Welcome to my blog.

Welcome to my world - mostly the fabric world that I escape to whenever I have time. Hope you enjoy it and please feel free to comment.....

Friday, June 29, 2012

In The Swim With My Watery Quilt

I was hoping to get all my sewing done with the strips for the Water Quilt tonight - 
nearly made it.
Here is my bundle of sewn strips.
 I thought I had them all sewn and had started  ironing them and then I noticed 
No idea when  or why the tension started playing up but it did so now I have 
 these that need re-sewing!  
That is a job for tomorrow.

Till next time...............happy sewing! 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Three kinds of cute!

First cute thing!

Last month I featured the wonderful award winning quilts of one of my new friends, Liz.  I "met" Liz through Aussie Heroes and I am so glad!  She makes the most amazing quilts! Check out one of her latest!  
She has just completed this one and it is a raffle quilt to raise funds for cystic fibrosis.  
Isn't it just magic!
She has just completed another gorgeous one for Aussie Heroes but I can't show that to you yet as it will be on the Aussie Hero blog tomorrow night - you might like to check it out then.  

And now for the second cute thing!

This is Maisy..


What a difference!  I reckon she feels so much better once all that hair cut off.  I think she looks so cute with all her long sily hair but what doesn't show up in the pics is where the knots are and it is so fine (and she is such a sook) that you can't get them out.

And just coz she has fans of her own (yes, really!) here is Snickers the Diva herself!
 And last cute thing!
Well sort of.  This is the beginning of the watery quilt I am about to start sewing for the Head Chaplain.  I just love this turtle fabric.  I think those turtles are so cute.  I have cut these squares but I am planning on more fussy cut ones once I work out how many I need.  

 I am going to piece these strips into squares - you will see what I mean tomorrow hopefully and then dot the whole picture squares in among them randomly.  

I know what it looks like in my head.  Let's hope it translates to the fabric!

Till next time..................happy stitching!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Advice from 1949.....

A  friend of mine called Marg sent this to me and it is just such good advice (LOL!!!!!) that I have to share it with you so you are all well prepared when you next sit down to sew!

I am sorry but no lipstick and powder happening here!

Yesterday I finally finished my RAEME quilt top.  Today I all but finished the back but I have to trim it so decided not to photograph that.  I am really pleased with this.  It came up so much better than I thought.  I wish I could get more of these flag panels but they are about $10 each and that is a bit much to buy many when you are making as many donated quilts as I am !  Still they make a cool quilt for a soldier.
Tonight's job is cutting out the next quilt - my water quilt for the chaplain and then tomorrow hopefully layering this one and a bunch of others.  

Till next time...................happy stitching!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Only two

Only a little wee post tonight - spent most of my day doing paperwork and making or answering phone calls for Aussie Heroes.  It  is all good though.  Just managed a little sewing tonight .  Two more pot holders to go to Ireland for the charity Bazaar.  
I still have a few more to make - can't wait til they are all done and I can get on to something else.  I am hoping to layer the Irish quilt in the next few days too but we will have to see.

Right now it is off to bed for me.

Till next time..............happy stitching!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sunday night catch up

One more sleep till I get some data back and my internet speed returns to normal.  
Yesterday I went out to an Aussie Hero Sewing Day at a wonderful shop called Penrith Patchwork.  The owner Jeff was so kind and let us use one of his classrooms for free!  Whilst we were there, my friend, Pam and I layered two quilts and when one of the ladies saw us pinning she lent us this tool -I WANT ONE!!!!  but they don't have them for sale any more!  Does anyone know where I can get one?  It made doing up the pins an absolute breeze!  
UPDATE - thanks for the link Angella - I just ordered a couple!  
I really do have the best followers!

 There was a class running whilst we were there in fabric painting and a lovely lady called Adelaide was painting these GORGEOUS pictures on fabric.  If you want to see all of the ones she has done you need to check them out on Aussie Heroes but here is one - my favourite - to whet your appetite!  I cheekily asked if she would ever have time to do one for our soldiers and she surprised me by getting quite enthused and has promised to do a WARRATAH for "our boys".  Woo Hoo - happy dance!
 I was looking for some cute fabric to make a baby quilt for a little one that is due to be born prior to Dad's return from overseas.  Not sure what gender it will be I want something neutral but I just to get some of this fabric as it was on special and so unusual.  Maybe there will be a baby girl needing a quilt soon.
And finally here is my progress on my RAEME quilt. All the stars are made.  This is the layout I think I am going to go with ......maybe!  Still thinking about it!  Another time to sleep on it!

Till next time.............happy stitching!

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Have you ever seen a Gumnut strip?

Gumnuts met again today and Glenys brought along her Round Robin Quilt so that we could see it now that it is quilted!  And it is AWESOME.   The quilter calls her business kay & quilting but there doesn't seem to be a website so leave a comment if you want the contact details.

Just look at the detail.

 Just an awesome job and perfect for this beautiful quilt.

Now Del goes to another sewing group on Thursdays (I know!  How could she?  LOL)  One of the ladies here has a sister who used to quilt but doesn't want these pieces any more so gave them to the Gumnuts to go to the Women's Refuge.  Look at this sweet quilt top.
 Now get a load of this one - all it needs is BINDING!
 And gorgeous quilting
 And beautiful dresden flowers - love these.  I can't believe that the quilter didn't want it and didn't have anyone special to give it to in that case.  Still whoever gets it will love it.
 And finally STRIPPING!  Each year we make a quilt to donate to the local Fire Brigade to raise funds.  This year we are going to make a string quilt.  Over the last two weeks Andrea has been cutting strips.  Sge couldn't make it to Gumnuts today but she dropped off all the strips she had cut.  We sorted them into colours and decided we needed a few more pinks so a few of those were cut them we all chose enough strips to make our homework - five blocks.   Andrea had also cut a huge pile of foundation pages for us out of an old phone book.  I grabbed a bunch and tonight I managed to sew up 7 blocks.  
I still have more strips left so maybe I will sew a few more before the next meeting.  It all depends on how much time I have.

And now I am off to sew more stars.....I cut them all out this morning and I think I have a plan in my head......

Just before I go - I have a request for a special quilt for Aussie Heroes for someone who LOVES the ocean.  No surprise he is in the Navy.  I want to make a quilt that speaks to the ocean, to all the colours of the water and so on.  If anyone has any ideas or anything that you think will inspire me, please share.

Till next time.......................happy stitching!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Oh my stars

I only managed a little Cherry Red sewing tonight - a few more stars in fact.  These are for my special RAEME quilt for Aussie Heroes.  I have a special sewing day happening on Saturday in a class room at a store that has decided to support us so I have decided that would be a really good time to put the quilt top together so I want to try and get all the stars completed before then.  
 The black and white star is to go on the back.  The recipient of this quilt is a fitter armorer so tools like spanner, drill, lathe, mill, grinder, file, guillotine, welder are his tools of the trade.  This Tool fabric will be great for the back so I thought I would add some stars in to connect it to the front better. 
The red, blue and gold are the RAEME colours but the white is designed to tie in the white from the Aussie Flag.  I am really looking forward to fiddling this all together!  Here are all the blocks I have made so far just so you don't think I am just showing you photos of ones I have already done!  LOL
Till next time................happy stitching!

Monday, June 18, 2012

Quilting and Planning

Busy, busy day today.  
First up a little baking and I am sorry I forgot to take pictures.  I had to make two batches of muffins - Chocolate Chip and Two Fruit Muffins and alas no photos!   

I think last time I made the Two Fruits Muffins someone from outside Australia asked me what they are.  Simply, they are a mix of diced peaches and pears.  
This is a very simple recipe but lovely and moist and I have to give credit to my friend Miss Irene for this recipe!  

2 cups SR flour
½ teasp cinnamon
½ cup coconut
½ cup sugar
250g sour cream
1 egg
2 tabsp golden syrup
2 tabsp oil
1 415g can two fruits

Combine flour, cinnamon, coconut and sugar.  Mix together cream, egg, golden syrup, oil and fruit.  Add fruit mix to dry mix.  Stir till just combined.  Spoon into ½ cup muffin pan and bake 200° for 25 – 30 minutes.  Serve warm dusted with icing sugar.

The Chocolate Chip Muffins came from this page and they are yummy too.  They got the rare seal of approval from my boys!
Photos next time.  All the muffins are gone as I used them to pay my friend to cut my hair and Fly Boy's.   That is her currency of choice.  LOL

Lots of quilting today.  
First up I quilted this Wonky Cross Quilt for Aussie Heroes.  I hope you can see the quilting lines.  It was dark inside today so I took it outside this afternoon and laid it on the front of my royal blue car - rather colour appropriate I thought - but it seems the light wasn't much better out there.  Still I hope you can see my random wonky line quilting.
And then I moved on to quilt another quilt for the Women's Refuge Quilts that the Gumnuts are making.  What I really like about this quilt is that these 10" squares of 1930's fabrics were donated to us, along with some huge pinwheels and all together we have been able to take some discarded pieces and turn them into a quilt that someone will hopefully snuggle under.  Someones scraps can have a new life.
 Now that I have finished the top of the International Charity Bazaar quilt it is time for me to start thinking about my next quilt.  This one is for my Sisterhood friend Sandy for her Christmas present.  It is such a pretty fabric - now I have to decide what to do with it!   Hmmmm, time to hang it up where I can see it and think about it!  Any suggestions?
Till next time................happy stitching!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

International Charity Bazaar Quilt

My International Charity Bazaar is finally a flimsy!  It is bigger than I intended which means more quilting but I am more pleased with it than I thought I would be!   Before I put the borders on I was a but ambivalent about this quilt but now with the borders I love it.  I will be happy to send it on its way.

Til next time..............happy stitching!

Friday, June 15, 2012

Happy Little Vegemites and RAEME

First up I had a couple of questions about VEGEMITE after that AWESOME VIDEO (which still makes me smile and cry at the same time!)  Apparently some of you poor souls don't know what it is!  Aussie kids grow up on VEGEMITE and we all know the vegemite song.   The official website  will tell you that 

VEGEMITE spread is a nutritious and versatile food. Proudly made in Australia, it’s one of the world’s richest known sources of Vitamin B.

VEGEMITE spread is virtually fat-free, with a mere 40kJ in a 5g serve, and is the perfect accompaniment for a wholesome, breakfast, lunch or snack. It’s far more tooth and gum friendly than jams or choc nut spreads, without compromising on taste. In fact, its unique and delicious flavour is what distinguishes the VEGEMITE brand.
VEGEMITE spread contains no artificial colours or flavours, and has absolutely no added sugar. It is suitable for vegetarians, is kosher and halal certified and contains rich sources of thiamine. 25% of the Recommended Daily Intake (RDI) of riboflavin and niacin are delivered per serve, as well as 50% of the RDI of folate, or 25% for women of childbearing age.
The B Vitamins in VEGEMITE spread assist in converting carbohydrates, proteins and fats in food into much needed energy and are also important for proper functioning of the nervous system, muscles and brain. Folate aids in producing red cells in the body and niacin helps to maintain healthy skin and a healthy digestive tract.

Here is the bottom line.  Toast just ain't toast without a swipe of butter or margarine and then a thin smear of vegemite.  This was my breakfast this morning - all in a good cause.  Couldn't let it go to waste! 
Let me tell you, when we spent nearly three years living in the States we took a bunch of huge jars of vegemite with me.  I was determined that the boys would not lose the taste for it.  Then I had to find a bread that wasn't too sweet.  American bread is much sweeter than ours.  If you live in the States - I finally found it at Trader Joes!  Still miss that place!  We gave lots of samples of Vegemite to lots of Americans but they just couldn't handle it.  Perhaps their palate is not quite mature enough poor things!

 I actually got to do a bit of sewing tonight.  It is actually for an Aussie hero quilt but I can't share it on that blog til I am ready to post the tutorial with it so you get a sneak peak.  
I have been asked to make a quilt "in RAEME colours or something with the Aussie flag if possible" for a guy who only went to Afghanistan this Monday just gone.  

RAEME stands for Royal Corps of Australian Mechanical and Electrical Engineers I the Army.
  The turtle mascot Belvedere is resting on RAEME colours - the red, royal blue and gold - on his quilt.   
I decided that this was a quilt I could put together fairly quickly and I have been wanting to do a star tutorial for some time for the blog so thought I would kill two birds with one stone (horrible expression really).  I usually don't let myself take requests because I have so much admin to do but this time I thought "why not".  

Here are my stars -the white has been added in to bring in the white from the flag.  I think I will have about six stars on each end , not really sure yet.  This an organic "design" which basically means I am making it up as I go along!  LOL!  Sorry the light is not great - it was very late with I took the pic.
I think when it all goes together it will look quite good and then I will have to decide how to quilt it seeing as there is such a large area of blue, 
or maybe I will ask one of the quilters to do it for me .....not sure yet.
I and thinking of having stars top and bottom of the flag but I need to make more and lay them out before I know for sure.
Busy weekend coming up.  Tomorrow taxi duty during the day intermingled with sewing, baking and a few errands of my own.   Tomorrow night is dinner with the girls for Jacqui's birthday - she is the baby of us - lucky thing!  Sunday I think I am having 9 1/2 for morning tea (the half is 4 months old).  One of the lovely soldiers is bringing his family over so that my boys and a friend of theirs, Jake, can talk to him about joining the army.  I hope they are not all too shy!  I am thinking ANZAC Biscuits, Chocolate Chip and maybe a chocolate caramel slice.  I want enough leftovers to send some home with both the lovely soldier and his family and Jake and his family.

I guess you will see baking photos tomorrow and Sunday.
 Till next time.............happy stitching!

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Hmmmm....I wonder .....

.....what these are - cute aren't they?
And what could this be?  
 No idea?  I am getting ready to write a tutorial but you will just have to wait to see what for as it is too late for this little bunny to stay up any longer........

And if you couldn't guess what those cute little critters are here is a hint!
Till next time................happy stitching!

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A day of frustration

 I auditioned my planned border fabric today and aside from the fact that I could not get good light to take a decent photograph I am just not convinced that it is the right choice.
So out I went to see if I could get some more of the black squiggly fabric which is the easy choice but of course it is not available.  I saw this black fabric and although I hate using such a black fabric coz it attacts lots of fluff I think it is the best bet.
 It is not actually a solid black but has these cool aboriginal motifs on it.
 I didn't know how much I needed so I bought half a meter and will do the maths on Thursday.  No time tomorrow as it is an Aussie Hero sewing day.

Till next time................happy stitching!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Baking, and Borders to come

I have been flat out today - answering and replying to emails after that awesome video from Egypt last night but I still managed to get a little baking done - as per a request from Fly Boy I made a batch of Chocolate Caramel slice.  I made some last week but decided that the base was too thick but I really loved the way topping was made and the resulting taste.  Then I was given another recipe and I thought, well you don't know until you try it so try it I did.  I still think the base is a bit too thick so maybe I will have to try again. What I have decided I like is using copha with the chocolate in the top as it sets better and stays firmer than butter does.  Hopefully Guitar Hero and Fly Boy will eat it up as this is a perilous thing to have in the fridge.  So far the signs are not good - it has been in the fridge ready to eat since dinner finished and savoury things have been the flavour of the night.  Grrr!
 I also managed some sewing but it hasn't resulted in a very exciting picture.  My quilt for Ireland is now ready for borders but I want to see it in the daylight before I commit rotary cutter to fabric.   It was so dark and rainy tonight by 430 you would have thought it was at least two hours later.
Hopefully tomorrow I will get the borders on as I would really like to get this layered by the end of the week.

And just before I go...

Jane M asked me for the details for the cute farmyard quilt that Amy completed.  Unfortunately you are a noreply blogger Jane so I can't email the details to you.  Hopefully you will read tonight's post and see them  
The quilt is called Little Macca's Farm by Kookaburra Cottage and is only available as a BOM.

Till next time..................happy stitching!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Why I love to quilt...

I am sorry, I don't have any sewing to show you although I had planned to.  My night sort of got hyjacked by a video from Egypt closely followed by Skype conversation with a soldier in Egypt!!!  That left me on such a high and it started me thinking about why I love to quilt ....

Earlier in the year a Blogger friend of mine who lives in my old hometown in America confided to me that she had a few challenges ahead of her that wee not going to be fun.   At the time she said to me "Life certainly throws us curve balls, and this one is no exception. I just keep thinking that life will be back to "normal" in the fall."  I knew right then and there I had to do something for her.  I hate to feel helpless and what I do is make quilts but with my commitment to Aussie Heroes and a few other projects I knew I needed some help.  So I emailed some of my bloggie friends and some of the Gumnuts who I thought might have time and asked everyone to make some fall inspired pinwheels.  I told them the basic details and kept the recipient's identity a secret and hoped they would help me out.  I was not disappointed.  One of my wonderful bloggie friends, Joyce,  who also lives in America, offered to put the quilt together for me to save me from having to ship a completed quilt internationally.  That was just so kind of her.  Gradually all the blocks started to arrive at Joyce's house and when the quilt was finally completed Joyce devoted a whole post to pictures of it here - it is gorgeous!  And finally it was shipped off and arrived with its new owner.

I don't think she will mind if I share part of her thankyou message.

I am speechless. I am so touched, that words can not describe my feelings.  I LOVE my quilt. The colors, the design, the quilting . . . all wonderful.  This quilt will have a special place in my heart, and on my bed! To think that a group of women I have never met could make something so beautiful, just for me, is really quite amazing. This blogging world is so much more than the surfing and pictures and stories involved. The friendships that are made miles and miles away are tributes to the great spirit of quilters!

Then I told you about a very Special Quilt that my friend Louise made for our mutual friend Carina's daughter Georgie.  Georgie was born after Carina's lovely Mother in law passed away.  Unlike her siblings Georgie never received a quilt made by her grandmother.  All the grandmother's materials were given to Louise, who is not really a quilter but a wonderful dress maker.  Out of love, Louise made a quilt for Georgie and then rang me for advice on quilting it - I offered to quilt it for her and ended up binding it as well and then last Friday Louise delivered it to Carina.    The next thing I know there was a teary Carina on the phone to me to thank me for my part in the quilt.  Such a little thing for me to do but so important for Carina, her husband John and one day little Georgie (currently only 4 years old).

These are the sorts of reasons that I love to quilt.  I used to do cross stitch but there is something about being able to wrap yourself up in a quilt that just beats all I think.  If you want to see some more reasons why I quilt just pop over to the Aussie Hero Blog and watch the video we were sent from Egypt tonight.  I had a whole evening of Cherry Red sewing planned for tonight but this has somewhat distracted me!  I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

More sewing tomorrow night I hope but it the mean time I am just really happy that around 28 years ago (GASP!!!!) I took a night school course in Patchwork!!!

Till next time.....................happy stitching!

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Girly stuff

Some time ago, way back here, I showed some of my friend Del's work.  She is working on the most gorgeous pieced and embroidered quilt.   You can see more of it here.   Last Wednesday Del brought her latest block to show me and so that I could share it with you.  This is going to be such a pretty quilt once it is finished.
As far as I know Del said she has just one block left to finish and that is the centre one which is mostly embroidery.  Happy stitching Del!

And recently I showed you the tracksuits I made for my niece in Melbourne.  Guess I got the size right.  Honestly she is the spitting image of her mum!
This morning I had a lot of errands to do and then I came home and finished off this cake.  It is just a Triple Chocolate Temptation Cake as per the request but I made it with the cookies lying flat down instead of on their sides and layered them around the place and used several layers to build it up to cake shape.  Then I covered it with a second layer of cream so I was nice and white and added the pink marshmallow flowers.
The final touch for a 17 year old girl's birthday cake is edible glitter.  I think you can just see it on this picture.  In real life it looked so pretty and sparkly.  This is for a friend of Fly Boy's.  He has gone to her birthday party tonight and all she asked for was a cake-size cake as opposed to a log so I think she will be pleasantly surprised by the extra pretties.  I hope so anyway.
I doubt I am going to get much more done tonight.  I am off again in 15 minutes to collect Fly Boy from the party - that on its own would not be so bad except that I drive 30 minutes to the party house, collect Fly Boy and friend, drive 30 minutes to the friend's house and then 20 minutes back home.  Fun, Fun, Fun!   NOT!!!!!

Till next time.............happy stitching!