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Archive for April, 2010

Union Jack Pincushion by Cath Kidston

You’d think that one of the first things I wanted to do when I got to England would be to go see a historic site or maybe have fancy tea somewhere. But, what was number one on my agenda (after having a well deserved snooze) was to go to John Lewis (johnlewis.co.uk) at the Bluewater shopping mall in search of thread. 

A few months ago I wrote about the wonderful 50 wt Coats cotton thread available in Europe, and it was the first item on my list of “to-do’s” to go in search of it.  Two years ago I had purchased all the reds and greens available in this thread line (the colors I seem to use the most in my appliqué) along with some great shell pinks and greyed mauve’s that I haven’t seen in other thread lines before. I ended up loving the thread so much that this time I wanted to flesh out the blues and yellows. So, off onto the M25 we went in our rental car in pursuit of thread. 

Thread Counter at John Lewis, Bluewater

Above you’ll see a photo that I sneaked of the John Lewis thread bins…not that they are any different from any other thread bins home…but mainly so you’ll see that we bought out many of the colors.  And, looking around the haberdashery (don’t you just love that word…Pam, I know you do!) department, I was able to pick up the first of my give-away treasures. 

So, for the offing is the cute little Union Jack pincushion shown at the top of this post.  It was made by Cath Kidston (www.cathkidston.co.uk).  If you don’t know about her, she’s a prolific designer of fabrics (ala earlier Laura Ashley) who has begun her own empire of household items including ironing board covers, tote bags, and sewing accessories made from those fabrics.  Check out her website for inspiration and other sewing items available. 

So, if you are interested in winning this little souvenir of my English adventure, leave a post by the end of the day on April 30th (under this post please).  I’m going to make it easy and not require that you tell me why you love England, or all things English…but you certainly can if you want to.  Just tell me why you’d like to give this little treasure a home. 

–Penny

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Where’s Penny????

Afternoon Tea

I’ve had a few comments that I haven’t posted for a while….where, there is a pretty good reason why I’ve been so silent.  And, it has something to do with the picture above.  No, I didn’t have a heart attack from too much clotted cream…although it is entirely possible given what I’ve been noshing on over the last month.  

One of the Quilts from the V&A Exhibit

As you may have guessed, I’ve been in England for the past few weeks to attend the opening of the V&A quilt exhibit that I’ve been talking about for some time.   So, if you will allow me a little time to regroup, and get my thoughts (and luggage) sorted out I have things to share about my recent adventures across the pond.

But, what I can tell you is that the V&A exhibit was everything I had hoped for.  And, lucky me…we went back a second time so that we could actually absorb some of what we saw the first time. 

So, if I have got you curious, there is a great little movie highlighting the exhibit.  Just following the link and you’ll have a great intro by Sue Prichard (Curator of the exhibit) to a groundbreaking event.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/entertainment/arts_and_culture/8578091.stm

And, you might be interested in knowing that when I brought back little gifts, I didn’t forget my blog readers.  So, stay tuned for a little English momento giveaway.

–Penny

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