Friday, 29 October 2010

Nearly There!

Morning readers, here we are at the end of another week, crikey where did that one go? I have been insanely busy since we arrived home from Yorkshire and I must confess am feeling a little jaded. However, I am also feeling pleased with what I've achieved and verrrrry much looking forward to tomorrow. More of that in a minute.

The other morning we woke up to a splendid sky across the capital so I grabbed my camera and headed outside in my pjs at about 7.30am. A pink sky, well that needed to be captured.

Another reason I have been shall we say, slightly hindered this week is that my little friend has still been at home on half term. Sometimes, I was able to secure a little peace with the aid of a good book...

...other times he was not so sedate!

So the reason I have been so busy this week is that tomorrow sees the very first fair, the "Vintage Bazaar" in Frome. This has been organised by two pros, Clare and Lizzie and there will be a whopping 40 stalls at the event all of which seem to be of the highest and gorgeous-est calibre. I hope many of you will be able to join us and get a head start on your Christmas shopping. Who needs (or wants) the high street? Do you remember this strippy patchwork and those lovely embroidered circles in this post? Well now they have undergone their transformation.

I truly adore these cushions (may I say that?) and I have kept back one length of strippy patchwork to make one for myself when time permits (probably next year at this rate!) I must again thank my lovely customer Mantha, who gifted me the gorgeous embroidery. Hope you approve Mantha! (Thank you also to my lovely customer Joanne for the beautiful crocheted cushion, it looks very much at home here, as you can see!)

Other strippy patchwork, it seems I just can't get enough, has been transformed into pretty covers for address books. I've used some gorgeous fabrics for these which I've accrued recently, modern and fresh but with a vintage flavour.

Also in the "stationery" line, I have had printed a large selection of postcards and gift cards bearing all the best HenHouse images over the past few years. There are photos of the furry friends, the Den, fabric, cushions, quilts, roses, you name it, they're there! Quite a few of you have received these along with your purchases recently and the feedback has been really positive. The gift cards will be available for sale singularly and the postcards in packs of 5 (all different).

Not forgetting my most beloved vintage fabric patchwork. This time in the new and seasonal guise of hottie covers. Hotties are microwaveable heat pads, so much easier than faffing with boiling water and stinky rubber! I have made several, coming with either turquoise or pink binding and vintage button closures. They are quilted with pure cotton batting for maximum snuggliness!

More seasonal fun comes in the form of these limited edition 2010 festive sleepy owls, Gabriel and Nicholas. I love this red polka dot flanelette which I sourced from America and along with lustrous gold metallic thread, stars and snowflakes, they are a special take on the popular sleepy owls.

Twit twoo! As you may imagine, the Munchkin is loathe to let these go!

And what is that I see you snuggling on, Gabriel and Nicholas?

Out into the garden then for a spot of show and tell. It was a bit gloomy by the time I was ready to take these photos but I think the fabrics are jolly enough to brighten the darkest skies!

I have worked really hard to have two quilts ready to bring along to the Fair. The first is my first ever Christmas quilt. I have been making the star blocks when I've had an odd hour or so spare over the last few months and have enjoyed selecting all these gorgeous Christmas themed fabrics. I do think so many Christmas fabrics are very old fashioned, not so these!

The quilt is uber snuggly, with Dream Puff high loft super warm batting and is backed with red cotton flanelette. The quilt measures a generous 48" x 68", perfect for all the family to snuggle under on the sofa while eating Quality Street and watching old films!

(Please excuse our "half done" garden border!) Hopefully your eyes are firmly drawn to the lovely quilt!

I have used quite a bit of quilting on this quilt, sitching both in the ditch around each block and then in a crossed star pattern across each block. This makes the quilt deliciously pouffey!

Secondly, a quilt which has been a long time in the making is this very special "Weekend in Amsterdam" quilt, so called because this new gorgeous fabric line is called "City Weekend" and the design of the blocks is called "Dutch Windmills".

I was lucky enough to pick up a jelly roll (a set of 2.5" strips) of these fabrics at the International Festival of Quilts in August. I pieced the blocks and sewed them together but have had to wait until very recently for the yardage of the fabric to become available to add the borders and binding. The quilt is crafted entirely from cotton and has the highest quality cotton batting which gives a real vintage feel. It is backed with a tiny pink gingham cotton. This is probably the most time consuming quilt I have made to date by a long shot!

I also have a fantastic selection of cushions to take along to the fair. There are vintage patchworked squares cushions, both square and rectangular, these gorgeous hand quilted heart themed cushions made with vintage feedsack fabric and many more!

Last but not least, one very special item which has claimed a lot of my time is this little beauty...

This is the second vintage crib I have managed to make over, the first recently went to a very happy owner, and I am hoping this one will make a little girl happy on Christmas morning.

It has the added feature of having a drop side, just like a real crib. It has the usual gorgeous bedding, a fitted pink floral flanelette sheet over the mattress, a pretty vintage French top sheet, a vintage woollen blanket, a vintage embroidered pillow case and not forgetting, a proper patchwork quilt, hand bound.

Phew! Now all I need is to get in the car and head West. I have fingers and toes crossed to see many of you tomorrow for what promises to be a wonderful day. I hope everyone has a great weekend. xxx

(P.S. The promised third and last holiday post shall follow next week.)


  1. Wow Hen! You have been busy. Your gorgeous makes and photos have brightened this very grey Friday morning here in Suffolk - thankyou for cheering me up! I wish you a very successful fair tomorrow, only wished I lived closer so I could visit. Your Xmas quilts are out of this world - someone will be very lucky to have them in their home. Happy weekend xx

  2. Hen, WOW!
    WOW and WOW again! How fantastic is that quilt?????? (christmas one) Its wonderful, you are so talented!
    Hope the fair is a huge success and that everyone who makes it has a great time!
    Happy weekend!
    love Melxxx

  3. What lovely things you have been making as usual- I dont know how you manage to do so much !
    Have a great time at the fair
    Sue x

  4. Golly you've been busy - and such lovely things you've made. Wish I could get to Frome, have a great day.

  5. I love them all! Only wish I could get to Frome. I'm sure you will probably sell out, but if you don't will some of those lovely items go into your shop? Good luck for the day.

  6. What a gorgeous post, hope the fair goes well. I love the photo of the Munchkin and your gorgeous owl, it made me smile x

  7. I thought that I had been busy!
    I hope that your readers understand that you refer to Lizzie & Clare as "professionals"!
    T X
    See you tomorrow

  8. gorgeous goodies as always! See you tomorrow Hen (ps I had to smile at the pro comment too!) xx

  9. Wow you've been busy. I love the quilts the cushions and the owls they are gorgeous
    Julie xxxxxxx

  10. You are an inspiration and I can't wait to meet you tomorrow in Frome. x

  11. How funny...we both posted sunrise pics this week!
    Are you sure you don't have little elves somewhere helping you.I'm constantly amazed at the speed at which you produce all these gorgeous quilts!
    Enjoy your weekend..hope all goes well. :o)

  12. Hen,I am so fed up that Frome is soooooo far away from Pickering.I think youll be coming back with nothing as it will all be snapped up.Such cleverness and beautiful,beautiful fabric.I am quite giddy!!.Have fun at the fair.Much love Anne x

  13. Hen, you have been so busy!! So many beautiful things, but my favourite is the Christmas Quilt, its perfect, I love your choice of materials, absolutely beautiful.
    I'm sure you'll have a wonderful day tomorrow, and I wish you all the best, bet you don't come back with much!!!! Except maybe a few purchases of your own!! Good luck and enjoy your day
    Linda O xx

  14. Hope you all have a wonderful time tomorrow - wish I could be there but maybe next time. Love what you have made. I had a very similar cot which my Mother dressed beautifully - takes me back. Karen X

  15. Wow you have been busy, Your stall is going to look amazing, and im pretty sure you will have an empty car on the way back home. I love your quilts, the owls, the cushions, little girls crib, the hot quilt covers there amazing. Wow really beautiful post. Good luck and i hope a fun day. Dee x

  16. wow you've been so busy! Love the quilts & the cards look great, now I wonder which one is my favourite? Have fun at the fair.... loads on today but I'm working :( x

  17. Gosh Hen you've been working like a whirling dervish! No doubt you'll be sold out and some very lucky people will be receiving your treasures. Your patchwork creations are the most beautiful I've seen.

    Hope the Fair goes really well. Got any exciting plans for the 7th?! We're visitng your neck of the woods and staying with friends in Chelsea and leaving the boys at home. Goodness me, we'll be running wild!

    Would you mind letting me know your address btw?(
    Lots of love

  18. I wish I had been able to get down to the fair, but alas, it's a long way to go from Kent.
    Your items are just so gorgeous - truly inspirational. I have sewn all my life, but never really been interested in doing patchwork, but seeing all your pretty items -mmmmmm.....I keep thinking maybe I should have a go.
    I'm sure you had a very successful day.

  19. Lovely to meet you yesterday. you looked very busy .hope well rested now. it was a plesure taking youre little chap out .good luck in all you do .from hesta.

  20. I like your pink sky! Sometime I'd want to pause and take a picture of it too, but time is my ennemy in the morning!

  21. Best of luck with the fair! All your cushions are lovely, especially the owl ones - yummy!

  22. I visited the vintage bazaar yesterday and had great fun. You and your stall looked amazing. It was so busy I did not get a chance to say how much I enjoy your blog. Thanks and keep up the good work!!


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