The cushion for the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance

Babara Kitchenham from Bournemouth got in touch to tell me she was having a charity card party for the Dorset and Somerset Air Ambulance on 23rd May and could she have a cushion to raffle? I think we all know that the Air Ambulance teams do the most astonishing work and all their funding comes from charitable donations, so I’m delighted to be able to contribute something!

As the event is at a private house, we decided not to put the address on line, but if you know Barabara please get in touch with her for more details!

Yes, you’ve seen the cats before, but so many people have admired them, I thought, why not?!


A Cushion for The Variety Club’s Children’s Charity & Jack’s Place at Naomi House

Avril Owton of The Cloud’s Hotel in Brockenhurst asked if they could have a cushion for their annual fundraising cream tea for:

Jacks Place at Naomi House and The Variety Club of Great Britain. &

If you can pop in and support her on Sunday 14th July, it would be wonderful.

Here’s the cushion you could be pottering home with:


Lymington Sailabilty’s Cushion

Lymington Sailability We have many great sailing charities in the Solent and Lymington Sailability is one of those that offers the chance for folk who might not move too well on land to share the joy of speed, the wind in their hair and experience the joy of sailing in one of the most beautiful stretches of water in the world… I’m not biased!

Aly Gunn got in touch to tell me that it’s their first ever fete in Lymington on 8th June and their cushion will be raffled then. Go and support her if you can!

Yes, you’ve seen this before, but I feel the fabric is perfect for those who love watery activities! It will be turning up at a couple of RNLI events, too!


A cushion for The South Atlantic Medal Association

The South Atlantic Medal Association provides a huge range of support and care for all those who fought in the Falklands conflict.

David Leming, the Vice Chairman of the Association in Christchurch got in touch to ask for a cushion which can be raffled at their Gala Dinner on 14th June.

This one uses the beautiful pattern on one of Derek’s fabrics (for several cushions I’ve cut it so I could embroider the centre myself, but I couldn’t resist making at least one with the complete circle of embroidery!)

I’ve beaded it with beads left over from my daughter Sam’s wedding dress – when they catch the light they look beautiful, even if they were wee beasties to sew onto the firm fabric!


Phew, that’s more like it!

Finished six over the weekend and have several almost done! Got a proper ” line” going, so as the cats embroidered out on the machine, I frantically sewed buttons onto backs! Health and safety wouldn’t be impressed though! Sat at a funny angle and am now wondering about like wonky chicken!

Will allocate the new cushions and tell you where they’re off to tomorrow.


Pride comes……

Had decided to experiment with a VERY small construction line! Instead of preparing the front, then doing the backs and buttons, I decided to prepare two backs, overlooking them and sewing the buttonholes, so that whilst the magic embroidery machine got on with the fronts, I could be sewing buttons on.

Perfect, I was planning making a lot of backs, miles away, and hadn’t spotted I’d stitched the back to the front the wrong way round!

Ah we’ll, at least there’s something to do whilst the machine creates the next heart!


Bumble bugs!

Ok, so many things wrong with this! If I’d stuck to one heart I might have got away with it, but I thought I’d use up all that wasted fabric! My inexperience at appliqué shines through (I had intended to bead around the edges but hadn’t realised I’d need to, to hide the stitches!).

Working on velvet, I didn’t pay enough attention to the way the hearts moved on the nap, the slightly thicker, candlewicky stripe on the heart affected the switching coming back down, and one petal is too far out…..

Back to that drawing board. Oh, and when you see a perfect bit of appliqué (usually sensibly done on linen or cotton), silently applaud the skill involved!


Waste not want not!

Ok, having ruined a bit of the lively striped fabric with my wonky appliqué for cushion two, its time to rescue as much of the striped square as I can (well, I did back it with vilene to make it stronger, shame to waste that too!).

I’ve cut a large heart from it (as a useless drawer I had to online to find a free template – if you’re looking for template shapes, it’s always worth a search, lots of lovely people put them up for free). Now I’m pondering whether to have more than one heart and which fabric to stitch it on to!).

Humm….must be coffee time!


The Cushion for Macmillan at Christchurch

It’s lovely working with such a gorgeous fabric! Had some fun with the pale sequins and beads in the centre of the flowers. Wasn’t too sure about the red bugle beads I used on some of the petals, but husband Peter liked them and having asked his opinion thought it would be rude to take them off!!

So far I’ve backed all the cushions with a pale gold satiny fabric which I’d bought to make a Christmas table cloth of, it looked wonderful but I couldn’t iron the creases out after washing! The joy of it being tightly stretched over a cushion pad is that it looks fine!!

Using a different backing fabric can make a great contrast, save the lovely stuff for the front and, if you’re making buttonholes it’s easier to sew. If your cushion fabric is thick, two layers of it can be hard to stitch together, too.

The Macmillan unit in Christchurch. Offering essential and wonderful support to people facing cancer treatment and their families.