Saturday, September 29, 2007

On Sale Date ...

I had meant to mention in my last post regarding the Sisters Choice Medallion quilt - but of course being flaky I forgot - that the on sale date for the Australian Patchwork and Quilting magazine is February 22, 2008.

I am thinking I may make a pattern available at my website if anyone feels they just can't wait that long, or if AP&Q is not available in your area. Email me privately if you'd like me to explore this option.

Thank you again for the wonderful response :-)


Thank you all so much for your amazing response to my last post. Each and every lovely comment means so much. I would like to say a special thank you to Sally from SC - your message is so sweet.

I have been working hard on the directions for the quilt, and they're around three quarters done. I thought I'd take a break this afternoon and make up something I haven't ever tried before. It's a purse/zippy. A lot of fun to make, and I can see more in my future. I've put this one in my Etsy store.

Amy and Marty have headed on over to the beach house. Amy for the week, and Marty for the long weekend. My Dad is putting up a verandah at the back of the house and Marty wants to help out. I didn't really want to travel just yet with Cam, so we're having a quiet weekend at home. I predict I'll having a few late nights - I'm sure it's no revelation that I'm a night owl! I'll check in again soon and let you all know how productive I've been :-)

Thursday, September 27, 2007

The home stretch ...

Can you see me doing the happy dance? Surely the ground is shaking the world over! I just wanted to share that I'm on the home stretch now. The final touch will be to hand sew the binding to the back of the quilt. Yay!

The next steps are to write the directions and make a few 'in progress' pieces. We have a long weekend, so I'll definitely have a little time to myself to work them up. My deadline is for the quilt to be in Sydney on Tuesday (which would mean I'd need to post it Friday), but my editor has kindly allowed me to actually put it in the mail on Tuesday - I'm always a bit antsy about having a quilt sit around in a post office over the long weekend.

Thank you to everyone for your kind words and good wishes for Cameron. Kids bounce back so quickly. He's happy and chirpy again, and I predict back to normal very soon. Talk to you all soon! x o x

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Days just disappear ...

It's really quite terrifying - three days have gone by and I'm really quite wrecked.

On Sunday night we had Amy's netball presentation. Marty stayed home and looked after Cameron. While we were out Cam was feeling sick and couldn't hold down his food. At first I thought it was one of those 24 hours things that would pass. Tue am he was still ill, so I took him into hospital. He was admitted and we stayed overnight. They were great with him, and while he's still not 100%, he's so much better.

After we checked into the ER, I cast on for a pair of my favourite socks. I had just quickly tossed a ball of wool and some needles in my bag. When we checked out this morning, I had turned the heel, picked up the instep stitches and had started working along the decreases for the gusset. I'm feeling so proud of myself, because I didn't remember to bring the pattern, and I've knitted the sock up from memory!

Also in the picture, the next installment from Z&S Fabrics which arrived while I was out. I know you all have developed an interest in the welfare of my stash. I liked the purple from my current quilt so much, I purchased a whole lot more. I actually ordered it thinking I may use it in the border, but obviously now that is sorted. The other is just well, you know ... justin fabric. Just in case. Still hasn't made a visible difference, but there are some useable pieces now.

Well, that's it from me - I really need to finish the quilt I'm working on, I'm kinda behind the 8-ball now ...

Sunday, September 23, 2007


Oops! I lost a day! I usually manage to write something at least every other day, and had planned to yesterday, but it just passed me by. I was super worn out, and ended up going to bed at 10pm. That's just unheard of for me.

Just something smallish to share - I've started quilting on the Sisters Choice quilt. I doubt you can see much in the picture. The only real evidence is the quilted line down the middle of the leaves.

The thread I'm using is this really cute Mettler one, it's a variegated rayon, which shines just beautifully. It goes from a cream to a gold to a brown. It's really nice. Perhaps a little subtle for my extremely limited photography skills.

Better run, we have a big day - lunch at my Mum & Dad's, and tonight is the Netball presentation dinner. Should be a fun day :-)

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Border found!

I did have a cell phone picture here a minute ago, but it was so bad I had to change it out. I just really wanted to share that I made a decision on the border fabric for the quilt. With the help of Cheryl and my Wednesday girls at the quilt store I settled on a border stripe, which is much less bold than the other fabric, and doesn't draw the eye immediately away from the applique. The binding will be in the purple fabric, so I'm much happier with the way the quilt is progressing now. I've only stitched one border in place so far. I had planned to attach it after spending the day at the quilt store, but I came home to a pattern order which is more important, so put that together instead. I'll get the border on, and hopefully get the backing fabric ready in the morning.

I got a lovely surprise at the quilt store yesterday. One of my students from my 'Faith of Friends' applique class from 2004 popped into the shop. She told me she had finished working on the project, and of course I was dying to see 'show and tell'. It was a somewhat scary class for me, it was only the second I had ever taught, and I learned that there was a guild member attending. Anyway, today we had another visit, and we were shown the results of her hard work.

I was just thrilled to see the quilt. It's completely hand appliqued and quilted, and the workmanship is just wonderful. This is one of my most special quilts, it was the first quilt I ever had published, and it featured on the cover of the Australian Patchwork and Quilting Diary in 2005. If you haven't seen it, here is a bit of a picture of my original quilt.

I better run, there is still a lot to do before bedtime. Have a great day! x o x

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Fabric dieting ... not fabric fasting

Today I received a parcel in the mail. It was a the result of a little 'stash enhancement' I undertook recently. Z&S still have a number of sale fabrics, so I decided I really needed to give some of them a good home. You have all seen my fabric closet, this was a required purchase. There is another parcel on the way - I'm still seriously lacking yardage. Don't they just package the fabrics up in the cutest way?

Here are the four fabrics. There's a total of six (maybe 6.5) yards there. Does it show that I'm a 'reproduction' girl? I know I'll be able to put all of these to good use.

Not much happening on a quilty front here. The border fabric I have been auditioning simply hasn't 'spoken' to me. I'm still not sure that it's the right one to use, but the clock is ticking, so I'm taking it's silence as acceptance of it's fate to be used! There is also the problem that I don't really have a good substitute. I don't really feel I want to go on a fabric hunt with the deadline looming so close, so I hope to get it stitched in place by bedtime tonight. I also hope to get the batt tomorrow, and if I'm lucky I'll have it all pinned and ready to quilt by Friday. I have my fingers crossed.

The sock I showed in the last post was ripped back entirely. I started it again on US size 2 needles, and it's working up so much better. In fact, so well that I turned the heel last night. It's now back in the car as 'found time work'. I can manage from here without the pattern, and I've managed to 'find' 30 minutes of knitting time already today while waiting for the kids.

Well, that's it from me for today. For the next two days I'll be working 9.30 -4pm in the quilt store, so I'm not sure how much free time I'll have. Lucky me though - if you must work, do something you love! Have a great day everyone! x o x

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Girly High Tea

This afternoon the girls from Hubby's side of the family got together for High Tea. We don't all manage to spend time together too often, so it was nice to be able to chatter and nibble, and do it in a very civilised way.

There were 5 of us, Amy, MIL, SIL, Aunt, and myself. We had four of of these plates on the table. Quite the snackfest. Tea, coffee, hot chocolate aplenty, lots of gossip and giggles, and the afternoon was quickly gone. We've already made plans for another next month - super fun!

Last night I was just not in the mood for any quilting, so I decided I'd finish off the last little bit of the second purple mitt. I won't worry about a picture, as it's exactly the same as the one you've seen earlier. The finish meant that I need something new on the needles for the found time in the car. I had planned for some time to try a pair of socks I'd seen in a magazine, it would require some learning for me, so should be fun right? See there my first attempt at a picot edge. I'm loving it, and can't wait to use it again. Also my first attempt at knitting a lacy pattern. It doesn't seem to look that much like the picture in the book - but the pattern is at least looking consistent. A good start.

But ... and there is often a 'but' with my knitting. In her book 'Knitting Rules', the Yarn Harlot talks a lot about knitting a swatch to test for tension. A trap for young players ... I didn't do one. I confidently thought ... I'm a tight knitter, if the socks come out too small, I'll give them to my Mum. I didn't count on them being too big. Big enough that I could probably fit my foot and Cameron's in there. It's okay, lesson learned. I'm going to rip them back and eventually start something different. I'm not sure I'm into the lacy pattern enough to endure two socks worth. Maybe it was karma - the sock wool Gods knew I couldn't hack it and were saving me from the dreaded 'second sock syndrome'. Or maybe a higher quilter was telling me to get back to the quilt ... who knows ... but whoever you are, keep talking, I'm listening!

Saturday, September 15, 2007

It's still growing ...

I feel like doing a happy dance - now that I've finished with the applique, the quilt is coming together so much faster :-)

And just quickly ... raise your hands if you thought there was no way I was going to leave the applique melon border facing the wrong way. You would be right *blushes*. At the time I was determined that I would leave it be, but while I was out that night, my mind would wander back to the quilt. By the time I got home I just knew I was going to have to fix it, and so that evening I did. My sense of order is restored *lol*

Up on the right corner there you can see I'm auditioning the border fabric. I am still not convinced. There will be a 1" purple border after the sisters choice blocks, and the binding will be purple. I'm just not sure if the border fabric is too overpowering. But even having said that, I have a feeling I'm going to use it anyway.

Just a quick mention of the charm square workshop I ran the other day. We made up the braided table runner. I feel it was a great success. It was to run for three hours in the morning, but the majority of the girls stayed on for most of the afternoon. The braid was a new technique for all of them, and I think a revelation that it's not as hard as it looks. I should be seeing most of them again on Wednesday, so I'll endeavour to take pictures of their work for you.

That's it from me, I'm heading into the sewing room. I may just work on something different today, and let that border fabric 'speak' to me for a bit. x o x

Thursday, September 13, 2007

And some more Sisters Choice applique

As I said in my last post ... blow by blow ...

I see that I've attached the melon border on the right incorrectly, but you know what? I'm just not interested in picking the quilt apart to fix it. It can be my 'humility border'.

Have to head out to school chapel night tonight, so I'll check back with you all later. x o x

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

More Sisters Choice Applique

This applique is a time consuming business. It's taking a while to get thru it, so with a lack of anything else quilty to share, you're going to be seeing blow-by-blow pictures of my progress.

Having said that, I'm still loving how this is looking. It's one thing to design or envisage something, but it's another to see it come to life before your eyes.

I made a change from the original plan, I had planned to use a blue border around the middle applique block, and then there would have been several other blue borders, but I decided to use a repro-purple instead, and I think it looks better. Blue is always nice for a zinger, but it would have deviated too far from the colour scheme I have chosen. Today I don't have any 'children ferrying' other than school, so I should be able to get some more done. I'll be thrilled if I can get the next border on by the end of the day, but that may be a little ambitious.

In other news, I have listed some of my Thimbleberries blocks from last year's club in my Etsy store. I know I'll never get back to that project, so hopefully they'll go to someone who'll love them.

Well, that's it from me, I'm heading off to work on some applique ...

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Sisters Choice Applique

Looky here! I've been working some more on my applique - this block is starting to really take shape now. I predict that I'll be finished it this evening. Then I'll get busy with the applique'd setting triangles. I've had to force myself to work on this project, but now that it's taking shape I'm more inspired to work at it.

I need to have the whole quilt finished and the directions written by 2 October, so I will really start getting a move on now. It's due to go into an issue of Australian Patchwork and Quilting that goes on sale in February next year.

In not so good news - our fave football team lost the final yesterday. It was very hard to watch. They led most of the game, and in the last minute a goal was kicked that put them behind by three points and then it was all over. It's sad - especially for die hard fans - but in a way I'm glad I won't have to stress and get nervous over the three remaining finals. There's always next year.

Hope you're having a great weekend - I'm getting ready to do some chores ... and then I'm settling in for some more applique!

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Saturday Nail Biting ...

This afternoon I'm hanging around the family room ... trying to make busy while our local football team play in an elimination final. The reason I'm trying to make busy is so that I don't bite my fingernails down to nothing. If they lose today, as the name of the final suggests, they'll be eliminated from the finals series - and then it's year over for the Crows ... but of course I'm hoping it wont' come to that ... GO Crows!

I don't have lots to share with you on the quilty front - I'm going to start cutting out some more leaves for the Sisters Choice medallion project shortly - and then I can get busy working on some applique in front of the TV. Other than that, I just completed a custom order for my Etsy Store - a set of cute coasters.

Let's hope I have something more interesting to share next time ... I'll chatter soon. x o x

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Runner and Stuff

Hi everyone! Here is a much better picture of the runner I put together the other day for the workshop next week. I'm so pleased I finally did make it up, because while I was at the store after seeing the project one of the Thimbleberries Club girls signed up for it. I think the class is almost full - maybe 2 places left. How fun!

Lucy asked for some more details about the project. There's not a lot to tell really. The outside border squares are just as they come from the charm pack. The light squares in the middle of the braid are light charm squares cut in quarter, and the larger braid pieces are a charm square cut in half. When the braid is assembled, I measured 3" from the centre and squared up the edge of the braid. Super easy. It would be fun to keep going with the braids and borders and end up with a full size quilt too. For wonderful information on how to put a braid together, go to Bonnie's Quiltville website - very informative.

The fabrics I've used are the Rocky Mountain Quilt Collection II, and the Regency Collection I & II, both from Judie Rothermel. I just love her reproduction fabrics.

Last up, Jessica's How about Orange blog is always a great source of fun things. This is no exception: Spell with Flickr ... I couldn't resist!

T A_McElman_070710_0537 Z zed i E

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Gettin' a hurry on

On Thursday next week I'm teaching a workshop at the quilt store. Which is entirely wonderful ... except, I hadn't finished the projects yet. Or, more correctly, one of the projects I hadn't even thought of yet!

We're going to be playing with charm squares, and I've made up one thing we're going to work on, but the second project I just decided on yesterday afternoon. So, I thought I better get a move on and put the thing together. The picture shows where I got up to by 11pm when I decided to move toward bedtime.

It's a miracle that anyone has signed up for the class given that they haven't even seen what they're going to be working on. That's some kind of trust! I'm heading to the sewing room now to finish this up, and I'll show you what it ends up looking like. Have a great day!

Sunday, September 02, 2007

New Fabrics

Wonderful! On Friday my new fabric from Z&S arrived. I just love the fabrics I chose. A little surprising though - they have (I think in error) substituted a couple of fabrics. The third from the left should have been red, and the one on the right should have been green - the right fabric, just wrong colourway. I have total confidence that it will be sorted out.

The fabrics have already been folded up and put away in the closet, and it's hardly made a visible difference to the stash. Clearly I have a lot more fabric shopping in my future. I received a newsletter from them today, and it says they're going to be accepting Paypal, so that is a wonderful bonus.

Thank you everyone for your kind words and sympathy for Amy's injuries. She's doing just fine, and is wanting to go to school tomorrow. She's not as bruised as we were expecting, and probably will be just fine to go, but I think I'll keep her home just in case. I'm just a Mum wrapping my baby (who is bigger than me) in cotton wool :-)

And for fun, yesterday I made up another Shoo Fly Table Runner and put it in my Etsy store. I hope you like it. I'm having fun with these.

This afternoon I'll work a little more on my applique before we head to my parents house. I'm so looking forward to seeing my Dad, it's Father's Day after all. Love ya Dad!

Saturday, September 01, 2007


This morning I had planned to show you the tons and tons of stitching I would work on after we returned home from the netball game last night.

You know what can happen to best laid plans ...

Not too far into the last quarter of the game, Miss Amy took a great leap for the ball, and when landing it would seem there were too many feet in the one place. She ended up landing *horrors* on her left elbow, then her face, and last of all her body landed. Ohhh my goodness, it was just horrible.

After a trip to the ER, her arm is in a sling, thankfully it's not broken, it's suspected that her nose may have been broken, but we won't know. They decided that since it's still straight that they wouldn't x-ray it, as they can't actually do anything to fix it anyway. She's not feeling too bad this morning on her painkillers. Can you believe at the time she wouldn't allow us to take her from the court - she wanted to keep playing - she's one tough kid!

And she was very happy to hear that her school friends went on to win the game ... Gosh, all I can think of is this ... so much for a non contact sport!


Related Posts with Thumbnails