Monday, December 31, 2007

Royal Cross Update

Wow - our internet has been playing up, and after I typed up that last message, it took six hours before our internet was working well enough to post it!

I thought I'd quickly share how I'm going with my Royal Cross quilt. I've made twelve blocks now - thirteen to go. The blocks need to be pinned a LOT, so they are a little time consuming. Having said that, I still love working on them, and I'm loving how the design is coming together.

This will be my last post for 2007 - we're heading out shortly to ring in the new year with friends. It has gotten to just over 42c (108f) today, so whatever we do, we're going to be trying to stay cool! Have a great time celebrating! x o x

Final Stash Report for 2007

A big thank you to Hanne, for sharing this button on her blog for us to wear with pride.

My personal stash reduction challenge is not so much to reduce my yardage - because in all honesty, I don't have vast amounts of fabric. But more to use up my scraps, and pieces that don't qualify as fat quarters or yardage. Those are hardest for me to store, so I wanna use them up, and get them into quilts.

Purchases for the last couple of weeks: There were those three metres of fabric that I showed you recently. Not guilty purchases - the fat quarters are needed for Bonnie's mystery quilt. I'm starting to run low on the three colours I'm using. And the jet plane fabric - well, Cameron loves it, and I'll have to make it up into something for him.

Fabric use: I've been digging into my 1.5" strips, for the 'mosaic candle holder mats' which were Christmas gifts. Not vast amounts of stash used, but I guess with all four gifts, maybe half a metre used - when you include the 8" piece for backing, the binding, and there was also the use of scraps of batt. Nice :-) I've had to cut many many more 1.5" strips for the mystery quilt, so I have no clue how much I've used there - I even threw some Thimbleberries fabrics in the mix - something I don't normally do. I usually keep those scraps separate.

Overall for the year I'm thrilled with my stash progress. I've got 90% of the fabric organised to within an inch of it's life. I have new closets for it, and my yardage is all folded neatly, and so are most of my fat quarters. I have added to my container collection, and the 'Scrap Users System' is working a treat for me. Bring on 2008 and more scrappy quilts!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Carolina Crossroads Pt. 3

It has been hot here today 37c (98.6f), so indoor activities have been on the agenda. I've now completed part three of the Carolina Crossroads mystery, and I've got a few of the pieces put together toward part four.

I'm taking tentative steps with the new camera, always with Marty hovering close. I can see there is a lot to learn - I've been using a 'point and shoot' cybershot, and now with this beastie there are so many more options. I can see I'm already able to get so much more light in my pictures.

Also today, I've been doing some re-arranging in the hallway. Did you know that I love blue and white china? If you visit my home, you'd be left with absolutely no doubt ... and now you can see it from the front door too!

I treated myself to a new parlour palm. I've managed to keep the one in the lounge room alive for a couple of years now, so I thought I could try for another. If I look closely, maybe there is a tinge of green in my thumb after all!

Think cool thoughts for us - the next few days are going to be hot hot hot. On new years eve we're expecting 41c (105.8f). I'm thinking longingly of my buddies in the northern hemisphere with their snow drifts ...

Friday, December 28, 2007

Marty's New Camera

Just thought I'd share a couple of pictures that Marty took with his new camera. It looks big and scary to me - hopefully I'll be able to figure it out too. First up is Cameron ... and second up is Gracie in the Christmas tree.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Merry Christmas

A slightly belated, but nonetheless heartfelt Merry Christmas to you all, I hope you have a wonderful time with your families and friends.
*big hugs*
x o x

Friday, December 21, 2007


Ooops! I lost a day there! You all know how that kind of thing can happen during the silly season.

I just thought I'd share a little something that amused me highly ... I got Marty a shirt to wear on Xmas day (ssshhh ... he hasn't seen it yet ...) Isn't the cartoon super cute?? He'll love it I'm sure :-)

There hasn't been much stitching going on here. I've made two more of the "mosaic candle with mat" gifts, one for Natalie, one for Cameron's day care lady Christine, and I've one more yet to make for another friend (who I won't name, just in case). I would like to make up another Christmas gift if I can manage it ... I'll see how I go for time - some of our celebrating will be happening on Sunday, so it has been a bit of a time squeeze. I definitely haven't outdone myself this year on the handmade front.

In quilting related news - I fell down a little on the stash busting front. My friend Jenny and I went to Spotlight yesterday, and I came home with 3 metres of fabric. The fat quarters are to supplement my scraps for Bonnie's mystery quilt. The aircraft fabric was Cameron's choice. I have a few prints that he's selected, so perhaps an eye-spy quilt is on my horizon.

And in good news, my new drier was replaced without question. The store had a shipment come in on Wednesday, and they swapped them over. I've been washing away happily... a chore that I don't usually love!

I have to tell you ... when Jenny came over a little while back, she asked me what the huge noise was ... and I told her it was my washing machine - it sounded like I had aircraft landing in the laundry. So, you can't even imagine my joy at having such a wonderfully quiet machine - in fact, it's really easy to forget that I'm doing the washing!

Have a great day everyone! x o x

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Stash Report & Stuff

Here's my stash report for this week. No fabric purchases at all - even though I was tempted to go and purchase some fat quarters. I've done a little piecing - the mystery project, so I've used up some more of my 1.5" strips.

A tiny project for using up some of my brighter 1.5" strips was to make up a mat for the mosaic candle holder you see in the picture. It's a 6" log cabin block, I'm guessing the actual mosaic piece is about 10" high. It was a gift for my friend Sharon who had a birthday on the weekend, and of course I couldn't share it until she actually received it! I have a few more of the same to make this week toward Christmas gifts.

On Sunday night our family, and Sharon's family went for a trip to Lobethal to see the Christmas lights. This is a picture of our favourite of the light displays. My picture isn't great - and we're limited with the camera we have, but you get the idea. We're getting a new camera tomorrow - let's see if the quality of my pictures improve - or perhaps it's actually the operator *vbs*

I had some excitement yesterday, I purchased a new washer and dryer. I have been squirreling little bits of money away for a little while toward the goal. We've had the old ones for 18 years now - so they'd had a good innings. I love the new washing machine, it's a front loader, and I've heard great things about them. Today though, Marty was unpacking the dryer, and we were so sad to see that the side of it is all dented in. I'm going to have to take it back tomorrow. Keep your fingers crossed for me, they said it was their last one. They're going to have to work something out for me - it's just unacceptable that so often the customer is on the wrong end of quality control issues.

Tonight I'm going to some more work done on my friend Jenny's quilt. I'm hoping to have it finished for her tomorrow. Super fun! :-)

Sunday, December 16, 2007

More piecing

Today I've been piecing some more of the Royal Cross blocks. I made four, I'd like to have made another ... but maybe later. I'm just loving the interplay between the blocks and the circle pattern that forms. I'm also loving the scrappiness of the top. It's fun using up all these smaller bits and pieces that I have.

I now have seventeen more blocks to make - I really need to cut up some more dark scraps for some variety - I got bored while doing all the cutting back then, of course I wanted to get into the actual stitching!

And on the mystery quilt front - I've finished with step two (apart from cutting out the 3.5" squares which won't take long). I really need to cut some more 1.5" strips, I've really made quite a dent in the 1.5" strip container. Before I can tackle step three, I'll need a whole lot more lights in there, and some more blues and browns ...

I didn't have much of an idea about where the mystery was heading before, but now that clue three has been posted, I have absolutely no idea whatsoever. It will be fun to see the quilt progress.

There won't be much more piecing for the rest of today - I really need to get some chores done. I'm feeling a little edgy about the state of the house right now. I'd also like to get a few of the Christmas presents I've purchased wrapped up and under the tree. Best get busy ... TTYL :-)

Friday, December 14, 2007

Can you feel the love ...

Here are our two babies ... Holly looking much less like a baby. It looks like Holly is nibbling on Gracie's leg, but I wasn't really fast enough with the camera, she's actually cleaning her. Too sweet - they're friends already.

Do you see the little bows on the floor there, and the lego? The kitties have been busy taking the decorations off the tree, and chasing Cam's toys around the house. It's fun to see them playing together.

In quilty news, I'm still piecing away with the mystery nine patches, and I see that the next clue is up already. I hope I can catch up at some point! These little blocks are really taking me some time!

And last of all, sadly our netball girls lost the grand final tonight. They played so well, and the margin was only four goals in the end. I'm so proud of them all! They're just wonderful girls, each and every one of them.

Have a great weekend everyone! x o x

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Mystery quilt progress ...

Wow! Bonnie wasn't kidding when she said this step should keep us busy for a bit! Working with these little pieces is definitely time consuming. I guess I'm around half way through Part 2 right now - I'll be done with them by Friday I'm thinking. These little blocks are so cute, and I can't even imagine right now where we're heading with this project :-)

Not quilt related ... a number of you have asked how Holly is getting along with Gracie. I'm amazed and happy to say that after a nervous first couple of days they're actually playing together. Holly was very unsure of her to begin with, and we were a little concerned because she's so much larger than Gracie. We knew things were getting better when Holly wasn't hissing at her, and even went so far to lick her a few times. While I still wouldn't leave them together alone for any great length of time, I feel sure they're going to be snuggle buddies in no time. I'm really glad we didn't leave Holly alone for too long, it could have been a tricky situation.

And most importantly ... tomorrow is Miss Amy's birthday. Can you believe that my little princess is turning 13! Where did all that time go? I have to work at the shop during the day, so she's having the day at a friend's house, and then in the evening we're taking her out to dinner with family at her favourite restaurant. It should be a lovely evening.

I'll check back in with you all on Friday to let you know how things went. Have a good one :-)

Monday, December 10, 2007

Grace & Stash Report

Meet Grace - the newest 'fur person' addition to our family. She's Holly's niece - so she was family before she even joined us. I've been calling her Gracie, it sounds so cute. She's so tiny, I think she may even be smaller than Holly was when she came to us. (Ohhh, and I must mention - that is Holly's toy lizard on the floor ... not scary wildlife in the house *s*)

When we visited on Saturday to bring one of the kitties home, it was really hard to decide which one would come home with us - I decided on Grace because she was the smallest and shyest one and not the one with the prettiest markings. I knew all the others would find good homes because they were all cute and perky, Gracie seemed so shy, so my heart went to her. She's a darling little thing, and we're having fun welcoming her to our home.

In Stash Report news:

No purchases at all this week. Good going too, as Hancocks of Paducah have free shipping going right now, including international orders. That took some strength to not take advantage of.

I haven't done as much piecing of my own as I'd like this past week - I've made up part one of Bonnie's mystery project, and I made up three of my total of four Royal Cross blocks. I've started piecing the nine patch units for the mystery too. I guess maybe I've used 1-2 yards of stash? Not sure, it's hard to tell.

Wool stash (does this count?) I finished one 'car sock', and I've started another. Hard to knit right now given that we're in Summer, but found time is found time, and I'm happy to use it. No purchases on the yarn front either.

Well, that's it from me - happy stashing everyone!

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Scrapping ...

I can't believe it's almost Christmas, I just don't feel like I'm ready for the whole festive season yet. Heavens, I have barely started the shopping, and almost no quilted gifts - this is so unusual!! Amy only has two days of school left for the year, and Cameron has five. Soooo ... I thought I'd put together the traditional gift for their teachers - Seasonal mugs with mug mats. I hope they liked them!

I should probably put a few more together, you know, as 'justin presents' ... just in case ...

And because I just couldn't resist - I decided to dive into Bonnie's mystery project. I haven't made many projects that use a great number of my 1.5" strips, so I thought this would be a wonderful opportunity to start.I decided to go with some brown in with the red and blue, I had to cut up some of the brown and red especially, but there were plenty of blue strings in there to use. I have three customer quilts I need to finish up before I can start working on step two, but hopefully by the end of the week I'll be up to date.

This weekend is sure to be a lot of fun, in one hour we're going to pick up the new kitten. Cheryl is going to have one too. The kids will definitely be entertained, and it'll be interesting to see how Holly deals with the new arrival. I'll share pictures as I have them! Have a great weekend! x o x

Thursday, December 06, 2007

More Royal Crosses

Four blocks down - twenty one to go! I made three blocks up on Tuesday - I wonder if I can keep that up on the days I don't work. The quilt top will fly together! Don't you love the circular pattern that is already starting to appear? I'm really thrilled with how it's looking.

I've cut more of the dark value pieces, so I'd say I'm 80% of the way thru the cutting for this quilt. Quite a few people were interested in how I'm cutting out the pieces, so I'll elaborate ... I made up templates from regular template plastic. I then layered up 4 or 5 fabrics with the wrong side facing me - traced the template shape on the fabric, and then used my rotary cutter to cut out all 4-5 pieces at once. Slow going on the curved pieces, but much easier and faster than tracing out each shape and cutting with scissors like I probably would have done it in the past.

As I've been cruising blogs these past couple of days, I keep seeing all the wonderful results of Bonnie's mystery quilt. I'm teetering on the edge of diving in with you all. The only thing holding me back is the fact that I don't have a lot of 1.5" strips cut ... but I'm seriously contemplating just getting busy and cutting some more. Don't be surprised if you see me having a go at it ... I'm on the verge ...

Today I have a couple of things I really need to do before heading to the quilt store. I MUST put up the Christmas tree and get busy decorating. And I MUST get busy with Christmas gifts. Last year (and in other years) I started in around August. Where did this year go, and why did it go there so fast??!!?? Better run, lots to do, and not much time :-) x o x

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Mug Mats/Coasters

Just a quickie post this morning. Sooooo many people have commented on and totally loved the mug mats/coasters I often make for people, so I thought I'd share the pattern.

It's available as a freebie download over at my website. Just click on the 'free patterns' button. It's super easy - I guess the only tricky bit is the binding, but once you know how to do it, you'll be churning them out in no time. Enjoy!

Monday, December 03, 2007

Royal Cross Beginning

I promised in my last post that I'd start working on something for myself this past weekend, and true to my word, here is some evidence that I did.

My stash-busting effort consisted of almost cutting out all the pieces for my Royal Cross quilt. I cut all 100 of the light value pie shaped pieces and triangles. Also cut are all the medium value squares, and half the medium value cross pieces. I've cut a few of the dark value pieces too.

In the foreground is one block I put together, because I just can never resist the lure of the piecing. I just love it!

Amazing how much more time consuming cutting out curved pieces can be. This lot took a few hours on Saturday, a few hours yesterday, and I'm still not done!

Today after I get busy with some chores, I need to get back to some customer quilting. When I've finished the one quilt that is half done, then I'll allow myself to get back into some cutting. Better run - those chores won't take care of themselves! x o x

Saturday, December 01, 2007

Today I'll work on ...

... some of my own stuff. Really, I mean it! I put together a drawing of a quilt a little while back, and I'm going to start chopping up some scraps to make it up.

This is the quilt I plan to work on, but don't think of it in terms of the colourway I'm sharing here - think of it in a really scrappy way, using reproduction fabrics in the light medium and dark colourway. I'm really excited to work on something that has curved seams. It's been a long time since I've made one of these blocks, so I hope I don't stress out too much over the curves. They're reasonably gentle. I'm sure you'll be seeing my progress.

And here's the last two customer quilts I worked on. The one in front is the end result of a class I taught a while back. The girls made up table runners from charm packs, and this one is from the 'Roman Holiday' range, with a little yardage for the border. It's very nice.

Behind is a courthouse steps quilt from a shop customer - very nice to work on and a very nice lap size. I quilted it for about an hour yesterday afternoon, and then finished it last night. I have four more quilts to work on for others - I'll space them out over the next week or so.

In sporty news - Amy's school netball team had a huge win last night. In the semi-final, they had a wonderful victory against a team that has not lost a game all year. This puts Amy's team directly into the grand final in two weeks time. I imagine we'll end up playing the same team again, so let's see how we go. Go team!

Have a great weekend everyone! x o x

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Mugs and Mats

I try and post every other day, but I missed a day yesterday (the 28th) ... I promise I had good reason ... it was my birthday!

The day was entirely wonderful - the girls at the quilt shop had arranged a suprise party for me, I was just gob-smacked. It was a full blown party feast - they must have conspired for the longest time. Thank you so much girls, it was just lovely.

I came home from the quilt store with four customer quilts to work on. I'm enjoying all the quilting I'm doing - but it is meaning my own stitching time is very limited - and for you guys, not a very interesting blog. When the holidays get here in two weeks time, I won't be working at the shop, so I'll have more interesting things to share - it's a promise!

My family visited last night, and we had birthday cake and treats. What a fun day. I received some lovely gifts too, my parents gave me some lovely gold earrings, and Marty and the kids gave me a DVD player for the sewing room, and the second season DVD of My Name is Earl (I love that show!). Regular TV has been terrible lately, so I'll enjoy watching (or at least listening to) movies while I'm quilting.

In the picture - I finished the binding late last night on the second of the placemats I showed you a little while back, and I've rolled them up, and today I'm going to give them to Grandpa and May, as a 'just because you're special' gift. I haven't seen them in a while, and I wanted to stop by for a visit. The two mugs I picked up yesterday at the store, I plan to make up some mug mats and give them to Cam & Amy's teachers at the end of the year.

Well, that's it from me ... I'm off to see Grandpa and then work at the quilt store ... Have a great day everyone!

Monday, November 26, 2007

Bits and Pieces

Marty and the kids went out for a visit yesterday while I was busy working on Maureen's quilt. What was their destination? It was the home of one of Holly's sisters. She's had kittens. They're around 5 weeks old, and will be looking for a good home in a few weeks.

We know of a good home - this one! We decided we didn't want to leave Holly by herself for too long, so these kittens have arrived at a good time. There are three boys and three girls (a grey one and another ginger one not in the picture). I don't think any decisions were made about which one will come home with us - but time will tell I guess.

On a quilty note - not much stashbusting happening for me this week, so not a great deal to report on Judy's blog. I have been quilting on Maureen's quilt. I guess I'm about 1/5 done, I hope to get a lot more done today.

Have a great day everyone! :-)

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Maureen's Quilt

Marty and I have done our civic duty this morning. We voted in the federal election. I think a lot of people had the same idea we did - get it done early and the rest of the day is ours.

We have a BBQ at 4.30pm - so I plan to spend this afternoon tinkering with my webpage, and tomorrow I'll have the day to myself to start quilting on Maureen's lovely quilt.

It's a Susan Murphy design - I'm pretty sure it's called Formal Garden. I'm just enchanted with it. It could take a while to quilt, I'd like to have it done by Wednesday, but that may be pushing it a little. I'll see how far I get.

I would also like to get the templates made up for my next magazine quilt. I've got yet another scrappy quilt planned, and this time I'm doing some curved piecing. I'm feeling very brave about it, I haven't done anything much with curves. I'll share a picture when I've started actually working on it :-)

Also, I'm a little behind on emails right now - I haven't forgotten you all. I hope all our US friends have had a wonderful Thanksgiving - and have a great weekend everyone! x o x

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Using the scraps ...

Just a quick post today - I'm starting to feel weary, and the day is disappearing.

Tuesday evening I started using up some of my 2.5" strips to piece some scrap placemats for my MIL. I figure if I start making a dent in the containers with the cut strips, then I can start cutting up some of the scraps in the huge bins. Of course, with only the four placemats, there was no visible reduction to the strips. And I'll be digging into the 2" strips for the binding. I hope to get to that tomorrow.

In the background you can see the folder cover I made for Amy the other day, I just need to sew the binding down on the reverse side. It used 2.5", 2" and 1.5" strips from my containers. I must have had a 'blonde moment' when I measured up - it it just a teeny bit small for a folder. I just can't believe I did it - a trap for young players! It will however fit two textbooks into each pocket, so I'll get her a couple and it'll still be useful.

A big hello to Kelly - a faithful reader of many of our blogs. She came along to the quilt store today. It was fun to meet her.

That's it for me today - I have a reasonably quiet day planned for tomorrow - let's see how much I can get done.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Stash Shame

Judy has got a neat thing on her blog right now - encouraging us to bust our stash and share our efforts in doing so.

You all know that I don't have a huge stash, but what I do have is two bins of scrappage. They're really big - almost two feet wide, and one and a half feet deep. They just offend my eyes every time I see them. Some of the pieces within could be sorted into my fabric closet - but it's a matter of sorting through the mess. Other fabrics are small pieces, like 20cms of yardage - things I may have purchased for applique. I have no idea how to store that stuff.

The rest of the scraps are just that ... scraps and trimmings. I am often really good, and cut the scraps up into my strip bins - but those bins are starting to get really full - almost to the point of not getting the lids on - and I just can't sew them up fast enough!

I just need to get power sewing - it's going to take me years to get through it all, but right now I'm just looking at the bins, and that's going to get nowhere! Thank you Judy for encouraging us - we can do this - together!

On another note - thank you so much for your kind wishes and supportive messages regarding Madaline. It really means so much to know that you all care. x o x

Sunday, November 18, 2007


Today is a sad day, and I'm in some serious need of quilt therapy. Our dear sweet Madaline ascended to kitty heaven this morning. She was only seven, so she's gone way too soon.

I found her still alive under my quilt rack - she called to me in a strange way, and so we rushed her to the vet. It must have been Madaline's last big effort to call to me, as the vet had to revive her, but she advised us that we needed to let her go - she felt that Madaline was brain dead.

We're not sure what happened, but the vet said that snake or spider bite is at the top of her list of causes. The kids are devastated, as are Marty and I - we will miss her in the worst way, and Holly has been searching for her already. It gives me hope to think Madaline has found her long lost friend Sasha, and that they're playing together happily. Love you Madaline. x o x

Friday, November 16, 2007

Customer Quilts

Here's what I've been working at since yesterday afternoon - I have finished up the quilting on Jenny C's quilt, and applied the ric rac around the edge of the final border.

I was thrilled to quilt a free motion feather border for the first time ever - sadly it doesn't really show in the picture. I hope Jenny likes the result, I think it's wonderful.

And my work for the past hour or two has been to apply a binding to the cream wholecloth quilt you see there in the foreground. The customer had someone apply the binding for her - I suspect they may have not been a quilter - and she was really unhappy with the result, so she removed it, and I've done it for her again. I know she'll be happy this time. It's narrow and neat and much more in keeping with the lovely work she's done.

This weekend I will be busy writing the directions and making up some 'in progress' pieces for my scrap quilt - and hopefully I'll get a little quilting time in too. I still have three customer quilts to do. My pile of quilting is like the magic pudding - as soon as I get one done and back to it's home, another quickly replaces it. Lucky for me, I just love spending time in the sewing room.

Have a great day everyone! x o x

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Yay - it's finished!

Whew! A Galaxy of Scraps is entirely finished! I'm so relieved! I'm just loving working through my scraps, but there is still a long way to go. It's kind of funny - the more quilts I make - the more seems to go into the scrap containers - all part of the process I guess :-)

This evening, I plan to make up a couple of placemats with my strippy scraps. In the same vein as the Christmas one I made the other day, but without the piping, and with all different fabrics. Carole asked if it was a 'quilt as you go' project, and yes, it was. This is the first thing I've done that way. Susan Murphy is a wonderful teacher, and I love the ideas she comes up with. I've done her Christmas workshop for the past two years and loved it each time.

I was also thinking I may try and make a journal cover if I get the chance. There is one in the Thimbleberries club newsletter this year. Maureen had hers with her today, and it's super cute. Let's see how far I get before bed time.

I also thought I'd share a quick shot of my fabric closet - just so you know it's not quite so anorexic as it was. I know it's far from impressive (and my picture is very dark - sorry 'bout that) but I know you'll all be happy to know that slowly but surely I'm rebuilding my yardage stash. Kim has been desperately worried about the health of my stash - but be assured, I should be able to quilt for a good little while yet *vbs*.

Last of all, I wanted to share that today while I was working at the quilt store, the lady came to collect the Sunbonnet Sue quilt that we finished for her. She was just overwhelmed, and had tiny little weep, and lots of hugs for us all. What a dear sweet lady, and how wonderful to be involved in something which brought so much joy. Gosh it's great to be a quilter!

x o x

Monday, November 12, 2007

Galaxy's Quilted

My scrap quilt 'A Galaxy of Scraps' is quilted! Whew - it seemed to go forever! I started quilting on it at 11.30pm Saturday night, and I finished up around half an hour ago. (4.15 Monday afternoon)

This quilt ended up being bigger than I had envisioned. It's 216cm or 85" square. That's the size I drew it up at, but I didn't really make the size connection until I made the back up. I did the usual thing of joining two pieces of yardage together, selvedge to selvedge, and when I sandwiched the quilt, there was literally 1/4" of backing fabric to spare on each side of the quilt. Normally I would add more, but this time I decided to just go with it and see what happened. Luckily, the quilt didn't 'take up' too much, and I'm find to apply the binding. If I'm a really good girl, I'll get the binding sewn on tonight, ready for hand sewing over the next few evenings.

One of my favourite parts of piecing scrap quilts is using up all my leftover bobbin threads, and odd reels of leftover cotton. I used up a lot with this quilt! I used up six leftover reels, and almost all the bobbin bits and pieces. It always makes me feel very thrifty *vbs*.

Unfortunately over the weekend I didn't get an opportunity to get back to the quilt show - we had too many visitors yesterday to get out for any length of time. Disappointing, because I wanted to get back and look at the quilt show - and I also wanted to meet Mereth and Kerryn - they were going to be there on the weekend. I consoled myself with a flying visit to Spotlight. I needed some more taupe thread for the back of the quilt, and while I was there I found some actual reproduction fabrics packaged up as fat quarters. I treated myself to a couple, and Cameron found a cute fabric with Soccer balls on it that he just had to have. I forgot to take a picture of the fabric - so I'll share it with my next post.

I better run - I need to get dinner on the go. Talk to you soon! x o x

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Christmas Placemat

Yesterday a few of my favourite quilty friends and I did a class at the quilt store. It was a Susan Murphy class, and we were working on Christmas items.

I chose to make the placemats, and here is the one I made up yesterday. Isn't it super cute! The fabric with the poinsettias was from my stash, and the red and gold one was purchased on the day - I don't have much red, and this one I thought was the perfect compliment.

Now, I know this will make Kim happy - in the spirit of stash enhancement and because I liked the fabric so much - I purchased an additional metre of each - you just never know when you might need it!

Today it's my hope that I'll be able to start quilting on my 'Galaxy of Scraps' quilt top - I haven't made any plans for today so I can get busy on it, but you just never know what will come up ... Have a great weekend everyone! x o x

Thursday, November 08, 2007

Shopping shame ...

Today is one of my favourite days of the year. It's the first day of the Craft and Quilt fair here in Adelaide, and the fair encompasses the Quilters Guild of South Australia exhibition.

I was lucky enough to be asked to demonstrate for the guild again this year, so of course I happily accepted - I get to work on a quilt within the show, and catch up with all my buddies, and after my duties are done I can prowl around in the vendor area.

For some reason this year, I just couldn't get into the shopping mode - odd for me, I know. All I purchased was the 'Better Homes and Gardens magazine' bag (which is filled with goodies and issues of the magazine), and one ball of 'online' sock wool. I should have tried harder right? I think I was kind of tired. In the spirit of healthy stash enhancement (and you all know I need it) Mum called earlier this evening, and we've made plans to go again on the weekend.

Funny to think it was this time last year that I purchased my first ever ball of sock yarn - from the very same vendor. How much I've learned since then!

On a quilty note, here is a quilt I'm quilting on for Jenny C. It is incredibly cute. It's a Mum's Moment pattern - they have just lovely designs. And Jenny has made it up most beautifully.

I also quilted a sampler quilt on Tuesday for Maureen, but I forgot to take a picture to show you. It has been 'all quilting - all the time' here. But not so much for me.

Well, I better run - I need to get ready for a class I'm doing tomorrow. We're making Christmas projects. I'm glad to be something toward Christmas, this year I have not made anything at all yet, and it's the most disorganised I've ever been!

Ohhh, and I keep forgetting - an Anonymous Mary asked me a little while back about what machine I use for quilting, and whether I do it freehand. Mary - I just use my Bernina - I don't have the one with BSR or anything, it's just a regular Bernina. I rarely mark my quilts, and do most of my quilting freemotion. It's super fun, takes some practice, but it's so worth it. I'm learning all the time, and having a ball. Thank you so much for asking, and apologies for taking so long to get back to you :-)

Well, that's it from me - hope you're having a great week! x o x

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Two tops done

This is Lyn's 'Floral Squares' quilt - I quilted it for her yesterday. It's made of the most lovely flannel fabrics. I've never actually quilted a flannel quilt before. I'm going to have the make one myself. The fabric was a joy to work with - delightfully smooth and soft under the machine.

Aren't the colours and fabrics pretty? I love all of them. Even the fabric on the reverse side is a really pretty gold and cream toile flannel - just lovely.

And this one is her 'Sunrise' quilt top - I finished quilting it on Sunday evening. This is from Thimbleberries Club in 2005. Lyn substituted many of the fabrics for different ones and changed a couple of the blocks. It's really pretty.

Cameron and I will have a trip to the quilt store shortly to deliver the completed quilts and drop off a pattern order. I did have plans for a lunch with Cheryl today, but I'll have to take a rain-check on that. Cameron has a temperature, so he's home from school. We'll be taking it very easy. He had his first transition visit to his new school yesterday, a very exciting time. He's such a little soldier - I can't believe he's growing up so fast!

Last night after I finished up with dinner/dishes/kids, I pieced a back together for the 'Galaxy of Scraps' quilt top. I had planned to do a stash-bust with the 10" squares, but recently I found a bargain priced fabric at Spotlight, and decided to use it instead. It was the fabric I used in the setting triangles of Maureen's quilt - I had hoped to find more - and when I popped in the other day, they were closing it out for $3.00 per metre. So of course, I purchased 10 metres. I probably should have taken the whole bolt. But anyways ... now 4 metres have been used for the back of the quilt. And after that was done, I busied myself cutting up more scraps into my 'strips' boxes. I will tame those scraps if it's the last thing I do!!

Sunday, November 04, 2007

I'm into the quilting ...

Quilting item number one was Maureen's snippets wreath. She was so enamoured with Pauline's that she made one of her own. I'm just so into the Christmas fabrics that are around right now - so rich and lovely. I've quilted this one all but for the border. The thread Maureen gave me ... ran out ... this seems to be a big theme in my life right now! I'll pick some more up at the quilt store on Tuesday when I pop in.

So, I got busy on the second quilt on the list. Lyn has been a Thimbleberries club member for a little while, and had a quilt top from 2005 on the UFO list. She has changed a lot of the fabrics for ones she likes better and is racing toward the finish line. I've completed two bobbins worth of quilting - and I really hope I'll have it finished on Tuesday to give to her. I've got my fingers crossed. I feel confident I won't run out of thread on this one. I'll show you a better picture of the quilt when I've finished up the quilting. It's really pretty.

And now for a Meme that Cathi tagged me for ...

Tracy’s Why Do You Craft Meme

1. When did you start to create and make crafts? I don’t remember not being interested in crafts. When I was really little I recall getting in trouble for cutting up handkerchiefs to dress my dolls. I learned to knit at a very young age, and still have a little bear with his own sleeping bag that I made. I started quilting when I was first married in 1992. I was working part time and wanted something to fill in some time, so I took a class … the rest is history.

2. Why did you start creating? I’ve always been driven to make things … maybe it’s because my family have a very ‘arty’ background. So many people in my dad’s family are artists. My Mum has always been a sewer, as has my Grandma, and my Nan was a knitter … it was always going to happen that I would be doing something crafty.

3. Why do you create? I create because I can *vbs* I can’t explain it, but quilting is just something I want to do – from the moment I open my eyes in the morning to the moment I close them in the evening, I want to be in the sewing room.

4. What do you create? I make quilts – I love all parts of the process. Sometimes I make knitted items, but not nearly as prolifically as quilts. I have dabbled in other things, but patchwork and quilting is my love.

5. Has this changed since you began crafting? Well, I’m making the same end product, but I would say I’m doing it more accurately and with nicer tools and supplies. When I look back to some of my early projects, my skills have progressed – and fabrics are so much nicer too!

6. What are your crafting goals for the future? Quilting is my work right now, so I hope I can continue to be inspired, and have opportunities come my way. I feel incredibly lucky to be doing what I love on a daily basis. I love being part of a worldwide quilting community, so I would like that to be part of my quilting future too!

Thank you Cathi for tagging me for this meme – it was fun. I will ask anyone that would like to participate to do so. I always feel like I’ve left someone out if I name people … so I wont … but I’d like to stop by and read all about your crafting!

Friday, November 02, 2007

I'll be a quiltin' fool ...

Here's the back of the Sunbonnet Sue quilt - this is where I got to last night when I ran out of thread ... again! I can't believe it - So far I've used up two of those mid size Gutermann threads. There is only a tiny bit to go, so I picked up a small reel while I was out this morning.

I will definitely have the quilting finished and the binding applied before I go to bed tonight. I've made myself that promise. Time is going to precious for a little while ... because ...

Here are two piles of customer quilts awaiting quilting. Five of them, plus my own quilt down the bottom there. Wendy is bringing me a quilt on Wednesday too - so I have seven quilts to do in the next little while. Whew - I'm going to be burning the midnight oil for the foreseeable future!

In fun news - Sharon and I (Hi Sharon!) went to Ikea today. Gosh I love that place. I really love the Market area downstairs, I could ferret around in there for ages! We found things we'd never heard of before that we just knew we couldn't live without ... and of course more of that wonderful Daim chocolate. I can see me fighting with the kids for rights to that stuff! They had the cutest Christmas decorations - but I resisted those - the kids and I always pick up the new ones for the year when we visit with Santa. That will be on the list of things to do soon also ... the pageant is a week from tomorrow, and all Adelaide dwellers know that the pageant is the official arrival of Father Christmas ...

Better run ... I've got quilting to do ... be sure to have a great weekend. Ohhh ... and Cathi - thank you for the Meme tag, I will get to it soon!

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Coasters and Sunbonnet Sue

On Monday morning I finished putting together the top of my 'Galaxy of Scraps' quilt. I would like to further 'stash bust' with it, and when I'm ready I'll piece a back for it. I love Bonnie's 10" squares back idea, and use it whenever I can.

Next on my agenda for that day was to put together the back for the Sunbonnet Sue quilt. The lady who I'm making this for had included some yardage, so I just had to chop it in half and put it back together again - easy!

Later that evening I pinned the quilt and set to quilting, and wouldn't you believe it, I ran out of the pink thread! I'm experiencing deja vu here :-) Because I was due at the quilt store today, I decided not to run out and get thread locally but to wait. So ... this meant I was looking for something to do last night ...

I've had a lot of orders from quilt stores for my Log Cabin Table Runner patterns, which meant that I've been playing with my Thimbleberries Christmas squares - so I wanted to play with it some more ... I didn't feel like making up log cabin blocks just now, but thought I'd make up some Christmas Shoo-Fly coasters. They were fun to make, and I see more in my future.

They're in my Etsy store if you're interested ...

This evening after I pick up Amy from netball, I'll get busy quilting some more on Sunbonnet Sue - I think I have a customer dropping off two more quilts for me tomorrow, so I need to get busy!

Hope you all have a grrrrrrrrreat Halloween everyone!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Getting there ...

Here's where I got up to last night putting the rows together of my 'Galaxy of Scraps' quilt. Thank you for helping me be sure about my setting triangles. I'm glad I didn't go with the more plain fabric - I wouldn't have been happy with it in the end.

I have three more rows to go, and then I'll call the top done. If I get the opportunity, I'd like to put the back of the Sunbonnet Sue quilt together this morning before I head out for my lunch date today. Maybe I should do it first ...

But back to the scraps - isn't it amazing how far our scraps go ... I still have sooooo many 2.5" squares. I've had to stop cutting them for the time being, and I'm concentrating on 2" and 3.5" at the moment. I have 1.5" too ... but I don't use them as much ... but seeing Bonnie's trees ... Ohhh - what would I give for a few more hours in the day :-)

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Setting Triangles

I've completely finished making up all the blocks for 'A Galaxy of Scraps'. All the blocks are sashed and it's now decision time.

This is another quilt that I don't plan to put a border on, and I had planned to use the biscuit coloured fabric in the foreground of the picture for the setting triangles around the edge of the quilt. I'm now thinking it may be a little boring.

I found the pictured Sturbridge II fabric in my stash, and I'm thinking I may use it for the setting triangles instead. What do you think?

Decisions, decisions ... I hope I don't lose sleep over it! :-)

Friday, October 26, 2007

On guard!

Just a short time ago I ambled into the sewing room - you know - to pet the fabric, and think about what I might like to work on later today ... and look what I found :-)

It's like Holly has laid claim to some of my recent quilts. Or perhaps she's 'guarding' them. Whatever she's up to, she's certainly comfy!

And here's a fun link for you ... Australian Patchwork and Quilting ... it's their 'current issue' page, and you can see one of my quilts at the bottom of the page there. I don't know how long it will be before they change it out for the next issue, but I expect it will be a couple of weeks at least. You'll have seen that quilt in progress some months ago - how fun!

And last up for today, I thought I'd take a quiz that's doing the rounds - What colour am I? Do you think it's accurate? What colour are you?

you are lightcyan

Your dominant hues are green and blue. You're smart and you know it, and want to use your power to help people and relate to others. Even though you tend to battle with yourself, you solve other people's conflicts well.

Your saturation level is very low - you have better things to do than jump headfirst into every little project. You make sure your actions are going to really accomplish something before you start because you hate wasting energy making everyone else think you're working.

Your outlook on life is very bright. You are sunny and optimistic about life and others find it very encouraging, but remember to tone it down if you sense irritation.
the html color quiz

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

More quilting :-)

Today I spent most of the day teaching at the quilt store - not many places I'd rather be :-) After I got home and dinner and sporting activities were out of the way, it was back to quilting on this beauty.

I've been working on it off and on as I get the chance, it's for one of my Thursday girls. You can see it's one of those wonderful split nine patch patterns, and Janine has made it up beautifully. I wish I could remember the fabric range off hand, but of course it's kinda late, so the brain is getting fuzzier. It's just gorgeous though, and I'm loving working on it.

I thought I'd include a picture of the back for you - Janine chose a really cute red, green and gold Mettler variegted thread, and the back shows it off wonderfully (not that you can see the colours in the picture very well - but trust me, they're there!).

As you know, I'm a bit of a two trick pony with my freemotion quilting - it's meandering or peacock feathers as a rule - and on this quilt it's the peacock feathers. I thought I'd get it finished tonight - but wouldn't you know it, with about three square feet to go, I ran out of thread. Just one of those things - I'll grab a reel tomorrow, and if I get a shop sample done, I'll finish this quilt up while I'm at the store.

Nothing else of any interest to show you right now - I'll check back with you all really soon - I promise! x o x

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Stitching Day

A big hello to Sue, Janette, Sharen and Michelle for spending a lovely day with me.

Sue (in the black shirt) organised for her group of sewing friends to come over for show and tell, some quilting and lunch. I'd only met Sue before, and have never invited people in that I've never met, and I wondered how I'd keep them busy for four hours - but let me tell you it flew by!

A nice time was had by all, and we'll make plans to catch up again soon. Cheers girls!


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