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I am a quilter living in Woodbridge, Suffolk who has made quilts since I was a teenager. I also ring bells! Both are great British traditions....I will try to feature some of my antique Welsh and Durham quilts, the quilts I make myself, my quilting activities and also some of my bellringing achievements. Plus as many photos as I can manage. NB: Double click on the photos to see greater detail, then use back button to return to the main page.













Monday, 15 August 2016

Sandy Lush - Welsh Cot Quilts


Sandy Lush is a well known hand quilter who often uses traditional designs as inspiration and a jumping off point. This summer the Quilt Museum at Lampeter showcases a series of her hand quilted cot quilts. All develop the use of Welsh quilting designs, especially the paisley motif.


The original inspiration was this Welsh strippy from Jen Jones' collection by Mrs May Thomas.


Sandy combined the paisley motif with another pattern called the Welsh trail to create a cot quilt she called "In the Pink". Still rather a North County style format!


Excited by the design possibilities, Sandy went on to create a series of little quilts with a more Welsh flavour, having the all-over Welsh format.
See how experimentation with a few simple designs can create a great variety of results!
Varoius fabrics, plain and patterned were used....

Find out more on Sandy's website: http://www.sandielush.co.uk






















Thursday, 28 July 2016

Jen Jones' Cottage Shop at Llanybydder

On Saturday, we headed towards Lampeter - but stopped off at Jen Jones' original cottage shop first. I wanted Mike to see this tiny listed cottage.


Luckily, Hazel was there to welcome us in. I have been several times before, but always enjoy the display of blankets, quilts and other items here.



The cottage is just outside the village of Llanybydder - I wasn't sure that I could remember where it was...but we arrived...


The cottage is tiny but crammed full of stock. Upstairs, the rooms are arranged as bedrooms..


Some of the better quilts are to be found upstairs....


Hung on rails...


More quilts....

Quilts folded on racks...


Downstairs, there are lots of Welsh blankets for sale.


The main room has an attractive clutter of objects...

The main room....
More blankets....

Welsh quilts for sale...


Apparently, the tapestry blankets are not as popular as they were last year, but the Welsh quilts remain popular for decorating.

Hazel said that the supply of Welsh quilts had dried up, as people were no longer bringing them in to sell as before, although two good ones had come in that week (and were to be added to the collection). In addition, many of the auction houses have now closed, and this used to be a good source of quilts. The shop used to have lots of patchwork quilts; now only one or two. The red paisley quilts were also popular and the shop had just one or two damaged quilts on sale. However, there are two caravans full of Welsh quilts ready to be washed and repaired ( a slow business) so stock for the coming years will be available.

I have noticed that the best Welsh quilts that I used to buy are no longer available; also that the prices in Jens' shop have really shot up! I guess that it was a good thing that I started to collect some ten years ago, when these were still available.....I wouldn't be able to afford them now.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Walk from Cwmtydu to New Quay - Ceredigion Coastal Path

On Friday, the weather being relatively dry, we were determined to go for a walk. The Farmer suggested the coastal walk, starting at Cwmtydu. Basically, you followed the nearest road, up to the coast!


There is a walk around much of the Welsh coast. The section we chose is hilly, especially for us flatlanders from Suffolk!


This is the little bay at Cwmtydu - before the advent of roads, all goods would have been landed in small bays such as this. And, this bay was often used by smugglers, who hid goods such as salt  and   brandy in caves until they could be taken inland by horseback.


The local sheep....


The port of New Quay was 4 miles away...a popular seaside resort town, but with active fisheries.


New Quay has an enclosed harbour and is a popular spot for dolphin, whale and seal watching trips.


Low tide when we were there...lunch was fish and chips with a crowd of seagulls watching us...


Followed by an ice cream....we were able to spot some seals basking on rocks as we walked back to Cymtydu.
Welsh ponies grazing. 

My trusty old walking boots, which have carried me many miles in several countries over many years, suddenly felt quite different while in New Quay.......while they had been OK with the flat walks in Suffolk, they had come apart completely at the toes during the climbs and descents of the Welsh hills. I'll have to use my new pair of boots now, even in muddy conditions!

Tuesday, 19 July 2016

Trip to Wales July 2016

Here is our accommodation for our recent trip to Wales - yes, a gypsy caravan. I have been following Jinsy's farm blog for some time now, so when Mike asked what I wanted to do for my birthday, it immediately popped into my mind! And, looking at the visitors' book, most of the other guests were celebrating something special - a birthday, wedding or anniversary. Penyrallt Farm is located in the Teifi Valley in mid Wales, so a long drive from Suffolk....and the weather forecast was not good! But, I am glad to report that, although overcast, we did not receive any rain whilst we were there, so that was a good result.


The Gypsy caravan, our sleeping place - very cosy and nicely decorated,



The view - very peaceful and green....the farm is mainly dairy, so grazing cows as well.


As well as the waggon, there was a cabin and deck. It was a bit of a shock to realise that there was no wi-fi or TV! and it made us realise how reliant we are on these. After a day or two, I was getting used to this...there was a fire pit outside, too, and we enjoyed building a fire each evening. As the wood was well seasoned, this was not difficult to get alight.


The little cabin had a sofa, kitchen area and a bathroom with shower. There was also a wood-burning stove, which we did not try, but I guess would be useful in cooler weather!



The farm is a working organic farm, run by the Robinsons and their two sons. There is a holiday cottage, but the caravan is run by Katy, married to one of the sons.

In the next few posts, I'll be able to share our walk along the Ceridigion coast, our visit to Jen Jones shop in Llanybydder, the Quilt Museum in Lampeter and the waterfalls at Cenarth. I must admit, I was really in my element at Jen's....a lovely weekend to celebrate my 60yh birthday.

Thank You, Mike!!

Website for the caravan can be found here:
http://www.oldoakgypsywagon.co.uk/

And the link to Jinsy's blog can be found here:
http://farmlifeinwales.blogspot.co.uk/