01 August 2014

Quilt Tops

After two weeks away on holidays, I was very happy to come home to my sewing machine and finish off a couple of quilt tops.

All of the blocks for "Red Letter Day" have been finished for a while.  Decided to add a border to use up the leftover nine-patch pieces and ended up cutting a few more.  This will be going to Sarah very soon to be quilted - just need to sew up the backing.


Another quilt top that only needed the blocks sewing together is "Basket Case" - since taking the photo I've found a block that has a mistake, so I'll get around to fixing that one day soon.  I'm thinking this will be the last thing I will make with this "Oh Cherry Oh" fabric - as much as I love it, I'm over it.


Five years ago I bought a load of flannel to make a quilt for my nephew.  Thought it was about time I made it for the poor guy.  I love this quilt pattern - it was designed by the lady who taught me patchwork and quilting.  I've made it at least 3 times.


So, a few more quilt tops added to the pile to be quilted.  In May I spent a bit of time cutting out.  One of those quilts is "Text Me", pictured below.  This is a great quilt for chain piecing.  I have 6 blocks finished now.


While I was away a parcel arrived - backgrounds and Fig Tree backing fabric - I love how the fabrics were wrapped.


Eisteddfod starts this weekend so that will significantly cut into my sewing/socialising time BUT the good news is that the flood repairs are underway and I'm hoping will be finished by next week.  Once the carpet is laid I'll be able to move everything back into the spare bedroom and sewing room and I'll be a happy girl.

28 July 2014

Holiday

I've been on a holiday - a fantastic holiday.  My dear friend Barbara turned 50 in January and invited a bunch of her friends to Fiji to two weeks - such a wonderful, generous idea and I was tickled pink to be able to go. 


Shopping for supplies at Sydney Duty Free


Fiji is such a wonderful place to visit.  The Fijians are so delightful, friendly and welcoming.  These guys sang every evening.


 Every sunset was a picture postcard.


Paula arranged for t-shirts for us all.


I took plenty of stitching with me but after a couple of days, didn't do very much - laying around the pool and occasionally reading my book seemed to take over.


Lots of fun nights out for dinner - Kirra celebrated her 23rd birthday at Hard Rock Cafe followed by a parachute jump a few days later.


Final photo is the Birthday Girl about to open our last bottle of champagne the night before we flew home.


24 June 2014

Red Letter Blocks

All of the Red Letter Day Quilt blocks are made - these blocks are very quick to piece together once all the components are made.



All the blocks are now finished but not sewn together.


I've had an idea for borders to use up the leftover nine-patch strips plus some extras that I cut (way too many):


I'll try and work it all out after my holiday.  The extras can go into the backing.  Sarah's quilt top is together and looks fantastic - hopefully she'll put some photos on her blog soon. 

The binding has been sewn onto Scrappy Trip Around the World and I've stitched it down.  Need to make and attach a label then I'll take some photos of the finished quilt.

17 June 2014

Red Letter Weekend

Lots of blog posts, instagram and facebook message have been popping up over the last 10 days or so about Camille Roskelley's visit to Australia.  As soon as Di Mill hinted that Camille would be coming here, Sarah and I stalked her blog so we could book into a class asap.  Last Saturday was the big day for our "Red Letter Day" quilt class with Camille.

Sarah flew up to Sydney on Friday and, after booking into our beautiful hotel, we had a wander around the cbd shops before heading up to Una's in Darlinghurst for dinner - introduced Sarah to my childen's favourite schnitzel restaurant.

Saturday finally arrived and we headed off to Quiltsmith for our class.  Quiltsmith is a wonderful shop with a fantastic range of fabrics.  I've visited there a few times on roadtrips with the girls.

When we arrived Camille was wandering around the shop choosing fabrics for her souvenir-Australian quilt.  We started chatting straight away and she was so delightful and friendly.  The class was wonderful - lovely ladies in our group of 16.  Quiltsmith loaned Sarah a sewing machine, which was fantastic for her and me, as it turned out, because, dumb bunny that I am, I left the lead for my machine at home - couldn't believe it when I was unpacking the machine.  Nevertheless, Sarah and I managed to make two blocks each, as did most ladies in the class - one lady was on to her fifth block by the end of the day.

Camille explained the chain-piecing technique she uses, I think it's called "webbing", and the blocks go together very easily.



Sarah's block in lovely French General fabrics

When I visited Tasmania a couple of weeks ago, I left my Scrappy Trip Around the World with Sarah for quilting.  Sarah brought it with her to Sydney and I took it along on Saturday to show Camille as it's made entirely of Bonnie and Camille fabrics.  I love the clamshell quilting Sarah chose - I suggested a couple of options and asked her to surprise me.  Camille posted a photo on Instagram, which was a lot of fun.


Late Saturday afternoon Camille's friend Holly, Holly's husband David and Camille's husband Jarom turned up at the shop.  The husbands had arrived in Sydney on Friday for an extra-quick visit to Sydney.  Jarom had spent Saturday having a surfing lesson at Manly.  Was lovely to meet Holly as well and see her "Red Letter Day" quilt - it's a huge 16 blocks.

Camille and Jarom with Camille's "Red Letter Day" quilt

What a day!  It was fabulous.  Can't thank Di enough for arranging Camille and Holly's trip.

On Sunday Sarah and I took our time checking out of the hotel then caught the ferry round to Darling Harbour to visit Madame Tussaud's.

Queen Sarah

All too soon it was time to drive Sarah to the airport and then the weekend was topped off with dinner with Elizabeth, Matt, Michael and Peta - almost perfect (would have been with Jenni there too).

11 June 2014

Picnic

In March 2013, I was very fortunate and won a fabric giveaway hosted by Di Mill - I gave some of the fabrics to the girls in our stitching group and kept the rest.  There was a selection of Comma by Zen Chic and Avalon by Fig Tree & Company.


The yellow, grey, chalk and black Comma fabrics (plus a load of extras I bought) were used to make Picnic - a quilt designed by Kim Brackett for one of her Scrap Basket books - and the quilt was finished on Sunday night.

"Picnic" - 80-1/2" x 98", quilted by Sarah.

Stitched out some labels on the embroidery machine and these have been sewn to the back of the quilt.


The quilt will go to its new home over the weekend.

All the Basket Case blocks that I cut out a couple of weeks ago have been sewn up.


I'd prefer this top to be bigger, so I've cut out another 12 blocks in the hope of using up as much of this Oh Cherry Oh fabric as possible.

2 sleeps until Sarah arrives in Sydney and 3 sleeps until the class with Camille Roskelley - should be a fantastic weekend coming up.

09 June 2014

Swap Presents

The theme for our on-line group's latest swap was "Kitchen" - I received two beautiful packages from Jenny containing these wonderful gifts:

Photos borrowed from Jenny

Love them all - how cute is the cupcake potholder!  Thank you so much Jenny - the colours go so well in my kitchen.

My other partner was Teresa.  I wrapped her present in a machine embroidered tea towel -

Photo borrowed from Teresa

Teresa's present was a covered recipe book with a Bronwyn Hayes stitchery on the front - 


Yesterday Mum and I went to see "Grace of Monaco" - the movie was not at all what I expected and I did enjoy it.

I've been sewing "Basket Case" blocks over the long weekend - will cut out some more blocks today.  I think the quilt could be a little bigger and it will use up more of this fabric.


Gotta love a long weekend, even if it is raining.

02 June 2014

Using up the Stash

To be honest, I'm a bit over my stash.  I would really love to buy so many of the new ranges but there is too much beautiful fabric in my sewing room.  About 2-1/2 years ago I put myself on a fabric diet and have pretty much only bought backing and background fabrics plus a few absolutely necessary fabrics to finish of WIP's.

The last week or so there has been very little sewing - I'm still cutting out.  A couple of Christmases ago I was given a kit containing these fabulous Holly Holderman (Lakeside Drygoods) fabrics but I wasn't 100% keen on the quilt design - then I bought the "Fireworks" pattern while visiting Sarah's shop.  I started cutting out the blocks at stitching on Saturday afternoon.  I think these will make wonderful Fireworks blocks.
 

I've had Thimbleblossom's "Marmalade" pattern for a while and cut into lots of scraps and smaller pieces of fabric for this design.  There is one more row that couldn't fit onto the design sheet.


The only change I've made is putting two layers for the white petals because the underneath fabric showed through too much - hope it's not too thick for pressing when I sew it together.  I'm enjoying machine blanket stitching.

There has been a bit of shopping over the last couple of weeks - the greens/whites/oranges plus the two aqua fabrics on the right for my "Red Letter Day" quilt.  Sarah and I are counting down the days till the class with Camille Roskelley.   Might make one or two changes to these fabrics ... I have another pink on the way.


I sewed up a "Text Me" block and am really happy with it.  I've had to order some more of the yellow background fabric.


The embroidery machine was doing its thing yesterday while Mum and I were chatting.  I can show the full design and my secret stitching/sewing next week.


On Friday night I had dinner with The Schoolgirls.  Denise gave me this beautiful embroidery - lots of different stitches and techniques.  It's so lovely and suits my loungeroom perfectly.


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