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January 2011

pips, pillows and a give-away!

Welcome to the Moda Pillow Talk Blog Hop!!!

For those of you that are new to my blog, let's start at the beginning.  My name is Aneela Hoey and I am a new designer with Moda.  My first fabric collection 'Sherbet Pips' will be available from April (though there are some pre-cuts already out there).

For the Pillow Hop I was asked to make one that described myself but I think that this is something that we all do inadvertently anyhow.  When we make something, it always describes how we are feeling, what kind of mood we are in, whether everything is organized neatly or chaotic and all over the place.  I think that my pillow shows that I live in organized chaos!  It also shows what my life is like day to day - The characters in my prints were inspired by my daughters playing, there is lots of movement (jumping, swinging and riding) going on - in the character prints, co-ordinates and also in the composition of my blocks themselves.

For the next part of the hop I was asked to answer a few 'Pillow Talk' themed questions -

What is a little known fact about yourself?  -   I am completely rubbish at driving.  It took me five attempts before I passed my test and in the two years I actually continued to drive, I had a number of scrapes like crashing whilst manoeuvring myself out of a multi storey car park at rush hour (not into another car I hasten to add) or crashing into a pump at a petrol station.  No people were injured in any way whatsoever during said scrapes and I stopped driving before that had a chance to happen. I haven't driven for over 15 years now, I walk everywhere.

How do you relax?   -  I bind quilts, browse the internet or sketch.

What do you sleep in -  PJ's or NightGown?  -  I sleep in a set of matching t-shirt and lounging style pants.  My husband hates it and always says I look as if I should be going out for a run.  I dread to think what he would actually like me to wear.....

What kind of pillow do you like, Hard or soft, foam or feather? And why?  -  Medium soft feather pillows, I like to be able to sink into my pillow.

When you were young did you sleep with  a  stuffed animal? If so what?  -  I think me and my sister shared a one eyed teddy that we took in turns to sleep with (it was those hard up olden days my daughters get fed up of hearing about).

Do you sew in bed? Read? Watch TV? eat? -  I wish I could sew in bed but I am dreadful at losing needles and the bed is probably not the best place to lose them.  Mostly I browse the internet on the Ipad.

How many nights have you or your spouse spent on the couch?  - None, as far as I can remember.  

Night-time toddy?  -  Camomile tea ( is that a toddy?)

Early to bed or all-nighter?  -  Always early.

Who would you most like to have a pillow fight with?  -  Both my daughters, children are the best for pillow fighting with.


from idea to design

This post is one I have wanted to do for a while and goes through my design process from original idea to final design.  I'm kind of intrigued by the way different people design and if you are a designer too, I would love to know more about your process. One thing I have noticed is that I don't use mood boards to pin up idea's in the form of photo's, postcards and fabrics to draw my idea' from.  This may be because, my workspace is in my front room but also I think I just never have worked that way.  My mood board seems to be in my head, idea's and thoughts are constantly added and only the strongest survive, which I think is a good way of eliminating the weaker ones.  I also constantly jot and doodle in a couple of notebooks and always go back to these when I start a project.

So you may have guessed by now that this post is about the making of my Scoot fabric.  The above picture was taken last week and shows my youngest daughter home from school out on her scooter.  I have spent many many hours out the front of my house watching this very view that even without a photograph it is an image that exists in my head that I can draw from memory.  Notice the grey tights, school shoes (I think those shoes appear in pretty much all my embroidery patterns) and the stripy scarf ( I knitted this for her and she wears it every day :)).

This time last year I was on an embroidery kick and the idea of starting a new one based on my daughters out on their scooters appealed to me.  I made a quick sketch of the image I had in mind.

There was a bit of space on the back of the scooter, so on jumped a pup, who is in fact a fictional dog as my real life dog looks like this,

((BTW - I still don't think she has forgiven me for being ignored in favour of a dog of fiction.))

The idea of the sketch is just a loose mapping out of a plan.  This embroidery was being made on a snowy day around this time last year and this is the reason my stitched girl is all wrapped up in cosy sweater and scarf!  It's the mum in me, I can't help it!!!

A few months later, I revisited this design to create a spoonflower fabric and this picture shows my original illustration which was scanned into the computer and the actual printed fabric.  The design was made in felt pens and a fine liner and the background was added on my computer using 'Paint'.

When it came to doing my first designs for Moda however, I decided I wanted to begin to design digitally and I decided with the help of online tutorials to teach myself to use illustrator.  The whole of the sherbet pips line was designed in illustrator and the drawing part was done by using a wacom bamboo tablet.  I don't find the tablet as easy to draw with as a pencil, it doesn't lend itself easily to the kind of sketchy drawing I like as illustrator likes to smooth out and auto adjust all the marks you make, which drives me a little nuts but I'm getting kind of used to it!

So I'm going to stop my post here, really I could write a heck of a lot more but look how long the post got already!!

I hope you enjoyed it, if not, let me know and I promise I'll never bring you the story of how the girl on the tree swing came about.

Have a fun weekend - sewing, designing or just thinking about it!!!

fan(tastic) tree quilt

I think this one is my favourite tree quilt mini so far.


I have always wanted to make a fan type tree block ever since Katy made this dreamy one for the Ten Make Two Bee a year or two ago.  For a while I hoped someone else would make one for me and added Katy's pic every time I made a flickr swap inspiration mosaic, wilfully wanting one to magically appear.

But in the end, I had to do it myself.

I didn't use a pattern or paper piecing but just winged it.  Adding each piece where I thought it should go. I was very tempted to hang a little tree swinging girl off the tree but decided it might make it OTT.

And so the little wall forest of the future grows.  I think may be two more and I'll be done (is 5 a forest?).

Hope you are up to some good quilty fun too?! 

little trees


I like BIG quilts.  Big quilts are the business for snuggling under and hiding from the cold.  But big quilts can be a huge operation to mastermind in the making particularly if you, like me, turn your front room into a sewing studio by day and living quarters by evening.  Sometimes I get tired of trying to hide all the STUFF that goes into big quilts.  At times like this I start to think about making small quilts.  Small quilts are pretty useless as quilts unless you want to keep one hand warm (at a time) but they make excellent make overs for walls everywhere in need of a little dressing up.  Small quilts are particularly useful to hang up and stare at whilst cosying up under a big quilt.

This little small quilt is what I was making when I wrote this post (yes, wayyyyyyy back).  It took a long time to actually get the binding on because life's like that.

Now, all I need to do is finish off (stitch the binding on) a few other little quilts with trees on and I can show you my very own little fabric wall forest (every wall should have one).

Bet you can't wait?????