Thursday 26 July 2007

Bright fantasy flowers, part 1

Tonight I have been working on some blocks for a swap in the Scandinavian fabric swap group. This particular swap is " bright coloured fantasy flowers on black background". For this I'm supposed to make two different flower blocks for each of the participants - we are seven in this particular swap. This is my first set:

Each flower is made up of six fabric circles slightly overlapping. I've used fusable interfacing and appliquéd them using a button hole stitch. Hopefully the ladies who recieve them will be pleased, and they will blend well with the others' blocks.

Unfortunately I ran out of interfacing so I haven't been able to do my second set. I have some sketches for ideas of what to do, and I have pulled the fabric from my stash, so hopefully I'll be able to make them in a short time - so stay tuned for part 2 :o)

Hope you have had a creative evening as well, sincerely
Anne Ida

Tuesday 24 July 2007

Ten days in the Norwegian mountains

Three hours after I had come back to my flat in Oslo on Friday 13th; my Dad had dropped in with some of my clothes and hiking boots and we had eaten a pizza while I repacked my bags, I was picked up by my friend K and her Dad to be taken to their family cabin in Rondane – a mountain range in the central part of southern half of Norway. When we arrived we were met by K’s Mom and Grandmother who had prepared one of my favourite traditional dishes “rømmegrøt” (porridge made from sour cream, flour and milk) – need I say more than this was a wonderful start to a relaxing and great holiday? Lots of fresh air and lovely food and no worries what so ever made this a great week! Their lovely cabin is situated just a couple of hundred meters from Bjørnhollia tourist lodge, and the access to hiking opportunities are fantastic.

A cultural element on the first day was the gallery of Sverre Morken situated not far from the cabin. This is the man responsible for art most Norwegian sees every day; his work being on our money and stamps.

It was so great to walk around in his exhibit and hear him talk of the way he works, from the picture or painting via the engravings to the final product.

The weather was mixed over the time we were there, but we took every opportunity to hike in the area around the cabin, walks for everything between a couple of hours to six seven. The neighbour had their daughter’s dog with them, so we brought him with us when we had the opportunity. We even took him out for a walk on the Tuesday in pouring rain and fog that left the sight 15 meters – but that walk only lasted an hour *lol*. I thought I’d share some of my pictures from the days I spent up there, and let you see some of the beautiful landscape:

Sunday 15th: we went on a hike to Musvolsæter. The weather was ok, and we had a good walk with the dog playing along the trail.

Monday 16th:
we went on a hike to Langglupen, a fabulous water feature in the valley beneath some of the grand mountain tops.

On Tuesday 16th the weather was horrible, we managed to walk the dog, but no pictures were taken with all the fog. I managed to stitch a bit on my SBS in the evening, though. These three blocks are all I can show for over the last few weeks *lol*, and some work on the rest of my swap blocks.

On Wednesday 17th
we took a walk onto the nearest top, Musvolkampen. We even signed the book kept on the top as a record of the visitors :o)

Thursday 19th we hiked into Villmanndalen (Wild man valley). This is a special botanical area, with loads and loads of plants that are not supposed to survive in those hights. Unfortunately the rain that had come down over the previous weeks the area was difficult to walk in - the trail beeing flooded several places. We ended up walking quite a long way along the ridge of the valley looking down into it, and had to wade across the flooded stream a couple of times.

Friday 20th K and I conquered Svulten; a top 1570 meters above sea level. It was stone on stone on stone and quite hard to walk (worse going down than up) seeing as it is not a part of the regular tourist trails - but we did it. As you can see there was quite a lot of snow in the mountains.

Saturday 21st we went on a hike to Vulutjønn - a lake about 2,5 hours walk from the cabin. All in all we were seven people on this hike. we had a wonderful lunch wit coffee made on open fire. The scenery was fabulous, the guys got in some fishing (only caught one, though) and I got a gozillion mosquito bites *lol*

On Sunday we went home... I hope you have enjoyed my little holliday diary, and I leave off this post with one more picture of the beautyful area I got to visit.
Sincerely, Anne Ida

Monday 23 July 2007

My time in England

Well, I’m back after first a holiday/work in England, and then a wonderful week in the Norwegian mountains. I thought I’d share some of my memories – even if they are not quilt related :o)

I had a few wonderful days in London; I stayed with my BF for a few days – relaxed and enjoyed myself. We went to the cinema, had some time shopping, and saw “Mamma Mia” a show based on the songs of ABBA – it was really entertaining, even if the story line is a bit thin, the songs are wonderful and makes a great show! I also got to meet Patricia – one of the ladies from the Sylvia's Bridal Sampler e-mail forum. We spent a fun evening together chatting away about quilting and life and everything. She is a lovely lady and it was so nice to meet a “name from a list” :o)

After my relaxing time I went off to Leeds for the International Medieval Congress. It was really fun to see so many medievalists gathered together in one place. I got to hear quite a few interesting papers, and - being dead nervous about doing my first public speach in English - I survived presenting my own paper :o) I have not the best stamina for sitting and listening to lectures day in and day out, so I picked what I figured would be interesting, and took the opportunity of sight seeing for the rest of my time (look at the sign in the bottom right corner!*lol*).

Leeds is a rather charming city, a mix match of old and new. On one afternoon I went for a walk to Kirkstall Abbey – one of England's best preserved Cistercian monasteries. It is a beautiful ruin in a lovely park.

Next to the park is a little museum with some of the history of Victorian Leeds: The Abbey House Museum.

They have quite an interesting textile exhibition with clothes from the 19th century, and also three lovely scrap quilts from the latter part of the same century. Two of the quilts are really colourful made by chevrons making up six pointed stars – they looked like they are made from cotton satin – perhaps a blend of lining and dress cloth? The third quilt was a log cabin made in many different calicoes and black/dark brown stripes around a rather large black centre square. Unfortunately I was not able to take any pictures inside the museum, but if you are in the area they are well worth a look!

Another museum in Leeds well worth a visit is The Royal Armouries. This is a grand museum of weapons ­– both for hunting, war and self defence. It is five stories of exhibition and you need a lot of time to take it all in. And their “hall of steel” is really impressive!

After five days it was time to go home. And after 15 hours on four different busses and an aeroplane I was home – just in time to repack my bags and go up to the mountains for a week – the story of that will be in my next post :o)

Sincerely, Anne Ida