Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Calm Blue Ocean

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You may have noticed that I’ve changed the header of my blog.  Was time for a bit of a shakeup.

This is the quilt I’ve used in the header – it’s my Calm Blue Ocean quilt, otherwise known as Mystery Quilt 2013.   I’ve had a few new followers lately (Hi!!) who may not have had a good look at what’s hiding here in the archives, so I thought I’d give you another look!

I’ve always loved this style of piecing– straight lines that look curved.  I’ve used up all my stash of these lovely cool blues, and overall I think the quilt worked really well!

Things are going along smoothly here – tree is up, lights are up.  Just about to take the children to the last ballet lesson for the year (thank goodness, I am so tired….) and then a week more of school and then that’s it for them!  I’m hopefully on track to have most of the ‘stuff’ done before they finish, that’s the plan at least.

Hope your day went well!

Saturday, 3 December 2016

I took a risk…didn’t really pay off

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I found some fabric on Ebay – cheap price, lovely prints, free postage, all good.  Come from China – I figured it was worth the risk.

It’s not worth the risk.  It’s so thin it’s like voile.

I do love the randomness of the prints they sent though, and I think the whole top cost me perhaps ten dollars.  I’ll probably use it for a backing.  Maybe.

It’s my husband’s fault.  When he stays away overnight I get bored and end up on Ebay.  So I buy fabric.  I won’t buy this stuff again.  I've got so much it, and I loved the look of it - it all looks like Liberty prints.  

How’s your day been? 

Friday, 2 December 2016

vintage dresden plate

I’m currently doing some secret squirrel quilting projects for two people who may possibly read this blog, so I’m not able to show you them yet.

But I’ve been systematically photographing, labelling and recording my flimsies, and have such a backlog of blog drafts to show you.

So I present the Vintage Dresden Plate.

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It was made as a demo for the Accuquilt machine, and now that it’s put together I realise I have no chance of finding any more of the background fabric.  It’s been made for years, but I keep thinking I should make it bigger.  But I’ve finally decided ‘Nup’.

It’s done enough.  A smallish wall hanging in vintage colours will fit nicely someplace.

We are currently being invaded by a plague of mosquitos as the weather warms up and I’ve just spent a good time sweeping the black, revolting mass of dead insects away from any window.  Every day I have to do this, and it’s all I can do to sweep them into a pile.  I can’t stress just how REVOLTING that is.  Our river is currently experiencing a ‘High Water Event’ (we are not allowed to call it a flood, as it’s bad for business).  The flood high river is fabulous really, the river is this big black, heaving mass and everything changes, the wildlife changes  – and we get many smaller pockets of backwater filling up and now we have mosquitos.  Mosquitos.  Mosquitos.  Everywhere. 

Apart from that life is puddling along nicely.  I’ve done most of my major jobs (like making 25 nun costumes for a school play – why do I say yes to these things?) and all I have left to do is make two pairs of socks for a Christmas present, finish two quilts, buy all my Christmas gifts, buy a tree, decorate the tree and make sure the house is spick and span (hardie har har) before everyone descends here for Christmas Day.  And do all my Christmas baking.  Easy peasy lemon squeezy.

I’m off out for tea tonight, so thank you for checking in on me and I will see you soon!

(pssst are you doing Quiltville’s mystery this year? – I can’t decide…..)

Thursday, 1 December 2016

Noah

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I think you’ve seen these guys before.  I’ve actually made two of them (why?  Oh who knows?  I’m an idiot????  I think I had two kits?? Lord knows why I do these things). 

This was a design by the Chook Shed ladies and over the years I have done many of their quilts.  Each daughter has a large Chook Shed design hanging over their bed.  It’s a little bit twee now, quilting styles having changed so much over the last ten years.  One of the reasons I’m not too worried about not owning a shop anymore – to keep up with all the latest trends is exhausting.  But I do think my little Noah is lovely.

I’ll not pop eyes on him till the quilt is quilted, but I’m thinking that I will get going on it soon and maybe donating it to some charity to be given out at Christmas.  I like the idea of a little one enjoying a quilt that he wouldn’t normally have had access to.

Hope your day is going well.

Wednesday, 30 November 2016

Disappearing Nine Patch

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Strictly speaking, this isn’t a disappearing nine patch as I’ve labelled it.  It’s the bits and pieces left over from my Pioneer Braid, the one that was bigger than a football oval.  I must have made a real mess up of my cutting because I had so many bits left over.   I didn’t know what to do with them, then it occurred to me that it looked a little like a disappearing patch, so in a fit of finishing, I stitched them together and here it is!

I actually think it’s a lovely scrappy design.  A real quickie, and would be ideal for a charity quilt.

As for the rest of my sewing endeavours, I’ve been crossing boring jobs off my list in the hope that I’ll have some free time soon.  Hah.  This close to Christmas?  I doubt it!

Hope you’re doing well, I’ll post some more soon!

Wednesday, 23 November 2016

stupid google

I’ve just discovered that stupid google has logged me out of blogger (but not livewriter, interestingly) so I can’t reply to your comments until I sort that out.

So if you’ve commented recently, and you think I’m a horribly rude person for not acknowledging them, please know that I have seen them, and I’m on to it – hopefully with a new password that will let me in again (don’t even get me started on the ‘must be 29 letters long with upper and lower case and numbers blah blah blah).

Until then, thanks so much if you’ve commented – it means a real lot to me!

Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Pioneer Braid

Another UFO/Flimsy to show you.

Can I just say, I Did Not Like making this quilt.  It’s one of Bonnie Hunters’ designs (well, I doubt she invented the Pioneer Braid but I followed the pattern from one of her books).  The stitching of this quilt is far too stoppy starty for my liking, and the long sections are very unwieldy to handle as they get longer.  None of that is Bonnie’s fault, of course.  And if you are going to make one, following her pressing guide is a really good idea because all my seams butted up against each other, which made stitching the rows together much more accurate.

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I had decided to make this quilt wider, and had it folded up to make more sections when my cat (god love him but I really don’t know why he did this) decided to pee on it.  He doesn’t do that as a rule, he’s very well behaved in general.  But he decided to pee on the worst thing ever.  I had to wash the top and then stitch two more rows on which was a flipping nightmare.

But now it’s done and it’s still hugely long – I must have made a mistake with my cutting because it was so enormous. 

But as I said, it’s done.

Thursday, 17 November 2016

Water Lilies Class–back at it!

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Hi lovely readers!

You may remember a few weeks (months….) ago I did a class with Rachelle Denenny, a local quilter who wins awards all over the place and taught me a life changing method of turned applique.

I’ve finally been able to work on the sample I did in class!   I know!  Don’t fall over in shock!

It’s still a long way from finished, but I have managed to do all the prepping for the top turned applique, and I have fused all the bottom section with vliesofix.  Now I need to stitch the top section before I can do anything.  And then I need to travel to another town to buy some tulle for the lower section.  Ah the joys of living in a small town. 

But it’s looking good so far, yes?  I think it is.

Have a lovely weekend, won’t you?  It’s going to be a HOT one here, and yet only a week ago we had hailstorms that wiped out many of our fruit crops (you can read about it here).  I didn’t post about it because it’s just so darn depressing.  They were bumper crops this year, and mother nature just decides ‘Nup, you can’t have it all your way – I’ll show you who’s boss!’ and leaves me once again asking myself, ‘who would be a grower?’.

See you soon!

Tuesday, 15 November 2016

Roses

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Just a quickie to show you before I put away the computer and get going on the housework.

This is a quilt we had at our shop, a million years ago.  I think it’s Tanya Whelan fabric, she does beautiful rose fabric.  We did very well from this range, if I recall correctly.  Very Shabby Chic. 

I had it out for a photograph and label check, so I thought I’d share it with you!

Hope your day is going fine!

Sunday, 13 November 2016

The most expensive coat hanger in the world.

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Doesn’t look that expensive, does it?

As with many of the things in my cupboard, it has a story.

As you know, I have two little girls.  It was very important to my Nanna, their Great Nanna who was a staunch Lutheran lady from way back, that those two little girls be baptised.  With all the trimmings – big fancy dinner, fancy baptism dress, etc.  She was such a darling Nanna that I happily obliged.

My first daughter was baptised in the family baptism dress (there’s a whole other story about that dress that I will tell you about at the end of the post).  It barely fit her by the time we organised the baptism (can’t rush these things!), and it took so long for me to get my act into gear that she celebrated her first birthday on the same day. 

Needless to say, by the time I got my lazy backside into order  I organised the next baptism day, my second daughter was too large to fit in the family dress. I had my reasons for taking so long, my husband was away All The Time, I was fairly well raising two kids on my own, and we had to wait for the godmother to be able to come here from interstate for the weekend, and she has a busy, busy job.

So we needed an outfit for baby number two.  She was probably closer to two years old by the time we had her baptised, and that first dress was never going to fit.  Nanna, as you may remember was a wonder with embroidery and smocking, and she volunteered to make a dress. 

All I needed to do was buy the fabric and get a pattern.  So off I trot to the local spotlight with two kids in tow (one five years old, one two years old – imagine that in a craft shop).  I found the pattern easily.  The pattern said I needed three metres (to this day I don’t know why it was so much – but I am a rule follower) so I found two rolls of fabric I liked – one averaged price (perhaps $20 a metre) and one fabric that must have been spun by elves from gold that cost $75 a metre.

Ohhh no, I wasn’t going to spend that much money on a dress for a two year old, despite how important the day was.  So I put one roll back and took the other one to the counter.

And you know where this is going, of course.

The clerk cut the fabric, rang up the sale, and told me it was $250.  Yep, I had put the cheaper one back and brought the expensive one.   The fabric was cut, she was not letting me get away with it, the kids were beginning to rebel and I just wanted out of there.  So I bit the bullet, paid for it and bought it home.  I gave it to my nanna and made her swear to please, please not make a mistake when cutting out the pattern!  I wasn’t going back to get any more!

And this is what my eighty five year old nanna made my two year old daughter.

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It’s really not the best of photos, but can I tell you, I cherish it.

So the reason the coat hanger is the most expensive in the world?  It was made with the left over $70 a metre fabric.

Sadly I have no photos of the day, because I was up the front holding the baby, and I gave my camera to my brother, who was totally useless and didn’t get a decent photo at all.  Brothers!

That’s the story of the most expensive coat hanger in the world.  The story of the family baptism dress?  When my husband’s grandmother died, we helped his Auntie clear out her house.  We had a six week old baby, but we drove over to offer some assistance.  In the cupboard was an outfit, clearly a christening dress.  The aunt didn’t know what it was from, but upon asking my husband’s mother, we found out that it was the dress that my husband had been baptised in forty years before. 

So it’s a special dress, and it’s waiting in the cupboard for the next generation. 

That’s it!  End of story!

Thanks for bearing with me.