"It takes ages to finish a quilt you're not working on!"

Monday, November 25, 2013

Christmas bunting

As usual there are a hundred other things I could and should be doing, but this was something quick and easy that served a dual purpose. I have a rather large stash of Christmas themed fabric, and having bought some really pretty modern fabrics last year and this year, I looked at the older ones and thought "what the heck am I going to do with this?" I hate waste, and knew I'd find something to do with them eventually. I saw a blog with Christmas bunting on it and immediately thought of my old fashioned materials - perfect! So here is my Christmas bunting - in piles on my sewing table when I'd finished.
And here is some of it pegged on the clothes line. I am going donate one length to our opshop to decorate the shop in December. The other two lengths will probably be hung up in one of our front windows, and also in the lounge or entrance hall.

Ah. Now I've got those out of my system, I'll get on to some more quilts for PNG :-)

Saturday, November 23, 2013


Well, the editor of Aust Quilters Companion must have thought the article about the PNG Quilt collective was not interesting enough to include in the magazine, because I've just bought the latest issue and it ain't there! Don't know why they bother emailing me and asking for information and photos...That has happened to me a few times over the years - has it happened to you? Some journalist finds out something about you that they think would make an interesting article in their paper or magazine, and they want all sorts of information from you. I've had people come out and spend a couple of hours photographing me with my linens or other stuff, then you never hear from them again. I do worry about what happens to those pictures...

If you've noticed the Aussie Hero Quilts logo on the side of my blog here, you can read more about it in this month's Patchwork & Stitching Vol.14 No.11. Jan-Maree Ball has worked very hard to get this off the ground and to her credit it has really taken off.

I haven't done much sewing at all lately and am really cheesed off about it. I have been given boxes of fabric to make quilts for the PNG babies, as well as Aussie Heroes, but just have not had time to do anything with it. Life at our place has been taken up with medical appointments and tradesmen the last few months. Ken said last week he felt like he needs a holiday. I said "YOU need a holiday? I need a holiday you mean!" Driving him to and from hospitals and medical appointments, driving him to leave and pick up bikes and car from mechanics garages...The only way I get time to myself is to do full day workshops, and he doesn't like it when I leave him for the day! I've enjoyed the quilting workshop mornings with Linda, and I've done two art full day classes this month, but I'm going to look for more next year. Particularly sewing ones, where I can do some constructive work for a change.

Saturday, November 09, 2013


First update is about my quilting class with Linda Steele.  Our second class last Wednesday was very informative for me in particular!  We were busy stitching patterns on our sample blocks, when my bobbin ran out of thread.   I had another bobbin ready, so I popped it in.  The machine promptly made 'eyelashes' on the back, ie. the tension was all out of whack.  Linda came over and tried everything she could think of.   One of the other ladies suggested that the problem might be the different thread on the bobbin to what was on the top reel.   She was partly right; the thread I'd used to fill the bobbin at home was a very old reel of thread that I'd been given by someone having a clean out.  Linda warned us that old thread can really stuff up our machine, and said I should throw it out.  So I re-filled the bobbin with the same thread on the top reel, and while I was re-threading the machine Linda noticed that I'd placed the thread somewhere that didn't look right to her . So we scanned the instruction booklet and sure enough, I'd been doing it wrong all the time for the past six months! Once we'd fixed that, my machine hummed along happily.

The final class is not for another three weeks, which gives us time to practice what Linda has taught us on our sample blocks.  When we return, we'll start on a new block using coloured fabric and contrasting cotton, and Linda is going to show us how to do the 'feathers' design.  The lady sitting next to me commented after the class that she is glad Linda has broken the workshop into three days rather than learn everything all in one day, and I agreed.  We both felt there is so much to take in that if it had been a one day workshop, both of us would have gone home exhausted and forgotten everything by the next day!

Sorry this next bit isn't stitching related, but some of you left such kind comments here relating to my last post about my friend who has cancer, that I decided to give a bit more info . We visited our friends today and "C" was quite positive about everything, although once the guys left us for a few minutes we had a heart-to-heart talk . She goes into hospital next week and for the next few months life is going to be tough for them both, as many of you would know if you have experienced cancer treatment first or second hand. Here we are having a hug before Ken and I came home - I'm in blue, "C"  is in pink.  She is eight months younger than me.

Tuesday, November 05, 2013

No new posts for a while.

Remember the Elvis/Cats Ipad bag I made for a friend? We were going to catch up a few weeks ago, but I hadn't heard from her until today. She emailed me to apologise for not being in touch earlier, but she is 'a bit upset' at the moment. She has just been diagnosed with rectoral cancer which is spreading to her liver. I can't begin to describe how upset I am. We have been friends since we were 15 years old, and have gone through many ups and downs (and marriages) and been there for each other. Sometimes we don't talk for a few months, and Ken will ask if we've had an argument. We've NEVER had an argument! We are such good mates that we don't need to be on each other's doorstep all the time; when we do catch up it's like we talked to each other only a few days ago. A very comfortable friendship.
We spoke on the phone tonight and she was as chirpy as ever. She said that if she has to wear a 'bum bag' for the rest of her life, at least she'll be alive! She isn't even contemplating dying at this stage. Her hubby is not taking it well at all, and Ken had a long chat to him tonight. We are hoping to visit them in the next few days and she is looking forward to having her Ipad bag!
Sorry about this long explanation which is nothing to do with this blog, but I just wanted my followers to know why I have suddenly stopped posting stuff. I'll be back, but perhaps not for a few weeks.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Another quilt finished for the PNG Quilt collective.

I've just posted this photo to the PNG Quilt Collective blog, but am putting it here as well to show it off, lol! I've had the top sitting around for a month or so, but with so much else happening around here I hadn't got around to finishing it. This morning I decided today was the day, and once I got going of course it took no time at all.

And this is my new sewing machine travelling case, bought at Spotlight on Saturday morning. I took two photos and Tiger was determined to get in both of them, so rather than waste time taking more pictures, I've just left him in. I've always envied the women I've seen trundling their machines into sewing classes in these nifty little trolley cases, and now I can 'join the club' - makes me feel like a pro!

Friday, November 01, 2013

Machine Quilting class, Xmas ornie.

Last Wednesday, I attended the first of three quilting classes with Linda Steele.  There are eight of us in the class and it was very informative.    Linda showed us the correct method to baste the three layers of a quilt, and then we learned how to use a free motion or darning foot on our machines.   This was mostly how to use the foot on our basted samples, not doing any patterns.  That comes next week.  One of the ladies had a lovely little case to transport her sewing machine, and she told me she'd bought it at Spotlight.  I just had a look online and found it on sale until next week, so I'm diving over to Spotlight in Box Hill tomorrow morning!  I'd put my sewing machine in a suitcase on wheels along with my fabric and other stuff, as it was all just too heavy for me to carry from the car to the shop where the classes are held.  But it was unwieldy, so for $50 I hope to have a proper case next week :-)

In the meantime I've finished a little Christmas ornament in felt for a swap on another forum.  It is a 'snow globe' ornament which can be hung on a tree or from a door knob or elsewhere.