Sunday 30 March 2008

This and That

Finally finished the March block of Capricorn Quilts BOM. Can't believe it will be April already in two more days. I wonder what Bea has designed for us next.

So much for just reading the Civil War books! As predicted by some very wise bloggers, I had to have a play and so here is my first block Church from The Civil War Diary Quilt p 79. It's not perfect but I'm pleased with the result. I think this will be a long term project for me - slow and steady.

Had a tidy up session in my sewing room this weekend and took a few photos.

Here is my favourite accessory in his basket. He likes to be able to look out the window so has a few of these little perches around the house.

Hope you had a good weekend and had time for some stitching.

Friday 28 March 2008

Manor House Block

Well, I finally got the centre block of the Ryland Manor BOM done. I hope you didn't hear me swearing at all the 'reverse sewing' I had to do to get the roof unit right! The other units went together like a dream but this one just wouldn't cooperate! After much angst and cursing and a few minor adjustments (!) I am happy and looking forward to next month's challenge.

I have mail. Firstly, a prize I won from Katherine at Quilt Obsession. This is a little shabby chic Inklingo kit she was giving away. The hexagons are printed on the back of the fabric ready to cut and sew. Looks like fun. Isn't her sample gorgeous?

She also sent a very nice notebook and a cute kitty bookmark. Don't know how she knew I'd like that one! Thanks, Katherine.

I also received a parcel of books from Amazon. Through blogging I discovered and fell in love with everything Tilda so had to have these two. They are full to the brim with cuteness! I will have to keep a close eye on these as my sister has become a big Tilda fan too!

Fellow bloggers are also responsible for 'making' me choose these. I have loved seeing the Civil War blocks that lots of you are making and decided I'd have a try to. At the moment I'm just enjoying the books but I guess it won't be long before I'll be posting about some of the easier blocks.

Oliver, the resident quilt inspector (borrowed that title from another blog I read today!) is giving these new books the once over. Maybe he thinks the love letters are for him?

PS. A big thank you to my blogging friend Sarah from Georgetown.

Thursday 27 March 2008

Easter Bag

I made this little bag for my niece Tali from pink sandcastle and some Simplicity fabrics. The pattern is by Lynette Anderson and appeared in Australian Homespun Vol 6 No 2. The original used wool felt for the applique but I didn't have any cream felt so went with cottons instead.

I've seen some great pictures lately of bloggers cats - seems they all like to sit in and on all things quilty. Oliver is no exception - baskets, bags, boxes, cupboards - he has to try them all out. This is what happens when you take a fat quarter bag out of a cupboard - a cat moves in and takes over the space!

Mm, very comfy. And a great view.

Right, yes, she's got the camera out. I better do something cute now!

And how's this?


Tuesday 25 March 2008

Material Girls

Tonight I went to a stitching group in Burnie called Material Girls. I was invited by Vicki who I met in Launceston at the Creative Women Workshop. The ladies were very friendly and it was nice to meet some fellow stitching enthusiasts from my local area. They all bought along a Christmas block they had stitched for a Christmas in July swap. There was a nice mixture of stitchery and applique. The blocks were placed in paper bags then each lady choose a bag - they have to finish the block into a bag, wall hanging, cushion or table runner for the maker of the block. It will be interesting to see the end results in July. I worked on my March block for Bea's BOM - will try to finish it tomorrow.

I cut out the fabrics for the Ryland Manor centre block today - will hopefully have time to piece it tomorrow.

Here are the photos I promised of my Easter gift from Kathy.

Kathy has done a great job with this pincushion. All the fabric is from a plaid woollen blanket which she felted herself. The colours work really well together.

She is on a bit of a roll of late with her pincushions. The two orange ones were made from Nell's Flower Shop charm squares she found in Melbourne at the Convention Expo. I made the log cabin one years ago - this is how my well worn one used to look!

Kathy also made these two square pincushions - I'm happy to say one now lives at my house. I love the fabrics she used.

Went on a little shopping trip this morning. Spotlight had 75 % off Easter decorations - so got a nice little bag of goodies for $5. This cute chap jumped into my bag in Target so he has also joined the growing rabbit population in our house! Bargain off the day was a nice tailored Rockman's jacket for $5 at the Red Cross Shop. It will look very smart when I am playing at being a choir mistress at the Eisteddfods later in the year!

Hope you've had a good day wherever you are.


Monday 24 March 2008

Easter Gifts

Hope everyone had a happy Easter. Thought I'd show you the stitchery I did for my sister, Kathy. It is from Lynette Anderson's free Noah's Ark block of the month - she was very clever to share the rabbit block just before Easter. Must admit I was inspired by Stina's version when choosing my colours.

I wrapped the stitchery and some of my pincushion ornaments in a fat quarter, then tied it up with some ribbon.

Kathy gave me a lovely little Russ rabbit and a pincushion made from a felted blanket she is recycling. Will try and remember to take some photos tomorrow. Today I made an Easter gift for niece Tali but can't show you yet.

Yesterday I washed this quilt which Molly had obviously enjoyed sitting on some time! There were a few doggy looking spots on it.

I washed it in the washing machine and hung it on the line 'til it was nearly dry. Seems to have survived okay - actually looks more antiquey now I think. The pattern by Polly Taylor, was in Patchwork and Stitching, Vol 2, No 6.

I am on holidays for the rest of this week so hopefully I'll get some stitching done. Still haven't started the Ryland Manor BOM so maybe that can take priority.

To finish, I found a very nice new blog today called Vintage Lane Stitches. You might like to drop by and say hello to Jo.

Thursday 20 March 2008

How Embarrassing!

Well, after 63 posts, last night I made a very embarrassing discovery. When I set up my blog in December, I also started a gmail account to use for my blog emails. To make it easier to manage I set things up so that whenever a comment appears on my blog I get an email in my bigpond account - the account I use for everything else. What I did not realise was that if someone emailed me using the address in my Blogger Profile these messages did not appear in bigpond. Last night I logged into gmail for the first time since December and found 330 emails!!!! I am so embarrassed and if you have sent messages that I didn't reply to I apologise profusely. The good thing is that now I have 'rediscovered' gmail it is going to be so much quicker and easier to reply to all your nice comments.

On a brighter note, thought I would show how my felt Easter eggs are coming along. As often happens, I modified the pattern somewhat! Decided to applique most of the pieces using blanket stitch - looked much neater to me. I also just joined the egg segments with running stitch - my whip stitch looked disgusting and I was quite discouraged for a day or two. After unpicking and resewing with running stitch I am much happier.


Oliver was very interested in this strange basket which had appeared in HIS garden. I use it at school for Easter singing games with the early childhood kids. Came from Spotlight a couple of years ago.

Not to be outdone, Molly had to check things out too.

I will leave you with these pictures of Oliver greeting another one of my school props. Had this bunny for many years and it's always very popular with the kids - quite realistic really and they like to pat it. I picked it up very cheaply after Easter one year.

Nearly forgot - big thanks to Peg who is my third person for the Pay It Forward challenge.

Tuesday 18 March 2008

Harvest Stars

This little lot of goodies arrived yesterday from Foothills Fabric and Threads. It is all the result of the Creative Women Workshop I went to in Launceston last month. The white stuff is Weaveline to which I was introduced by Sarah. It is great for adding to the back of stitcheries to give a bit more stability - also stops your thread ends showing through to the front of your work. The little bottle is Roxanne's Glue-Baste-It which Gail and Rosie both recommend for holding your needleturn applique pieces in place. A tiny spot means you don't need to use pins. Can't wait to try another needleturn project soon - probably Gail's cute bag.
The size 10 straw needles will be great for this. The pink ric-rac was supposed to be for the Sally dolls hair. As I was too eager to get her finished and substituted linen ric-rac, maybe I will have to create a sister for her.
This little quilt is an older creation of mine called Harvest Stars. The pattern was from one of the first quilt books I ever bought called Little Quilts - All Through the House.
Some of the points are cut off and not all the seams match but I like the scrappy, naive feel of it. Most of the time it lives in the lounge room helping to disguise a rather unattractive stereo system!
Finally, thanks to Catherine from Quilt Obsession in Toronto, Canada who has decided to join my Pay It Forward. Catherine is another blogger with beautiful pets - two very cuddly looking pussy cats. There is still room for one more in the PIF and remember you have 365 days to make your gifts.

Monday 17 March 2008

Blossom and Bloom

Just had to show you my weekends handiwork. Yesterday I finished my first ever bag - now know what a gusset is! It all went together very nicely and I'm very pleased with it. The pattern is Blossom and Bloom from Cinderberry Stitches. I loved the fabrics that Natalie used in her sample and mine is the same except for a slightly different pink floral. Encouraged by the success of this first effort, I think this bag will be the first in a long line. Here you can see the stitchery on the other side.

It's been unusually hot here the last few days. Molly and I went to the beach yesterday. She had a lovely time swimming in the waves and running around with all the other dogs. Here she is recovering from all the exertion and drying off in the sun at home.

Olly was lying close by under a chair, keeping her company, and looking cute as usual.

Thank you to Stina who has joined my Pay it Forward Challenge. There is still room for two more if anyone else is interested. See my last post for the details.

I got a nice surprise yesterday when Catherine from Quilt Obsession left a message to say I had won a prize in her Inklingo giveaway. Inklingo is completely new to me so I'm very keen to try it out. Thank you Catherine.

Well, I guess I'd better go and do my school preparation for tomorrow. Should have started earlier but blogging seemed a more attractive proposition! Tomorrow is our Easter assembly - I have four little girls, including niece Tali, singing a quartet.

Saturday 15 March 2008

Pay it Forward Challenge

I've joined the Pay it Forward challenge over at Sarah's blog. I met Sarah recently at the Creative Women Workshop in Launceston. Her work is beautiful and I couldn't resist the temptation to receive something lovely made by her.

The rules are that the first three people to join the challenge on my blog will receive a gift handmade by me. I have 365 days to make and send your gift -hopefully it won't take me that long. You must then do a post on your blog inviting 3 more people to join in and receive a handmade gift from you. Hope that makes sense! Sounds like fun so leave a comment soon if you want to take part.

A much anticpated parcel arrived on Thursday and I am now the proud owner of my very own jelly roll.

It was on sale at the Fat Quarter Shop for $24 US dollars (do the maths!) and is the Allspice Tapestry range from Three Sisters. Until I decide what to make, it will be prominently on display on the hall cabinet.

I also got some Simplicity fabrics to make the bag and quilt Natalie from Cinderberry Stitches presented at the workshop in Launceston. Very yummy.

Today I found time to start the Blossom and Bloom bag. I love the pink floss on the spotty green fabric - although not the best photo!

I went a bit nuts with the pincushion decorations this week - including one not in the photo I'm up to 25! My sister has also caught the bug and is busy making her own little collection.

Getting late so bye for now.