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

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

FABULOUS Opshop discoveries!

Have a look at these two embroidered items that were donated to our local opshop today.  It was very fortunate that I'd been asked to fill in for someone else this afternoon, otherwise I may have missed out on them!  Although the manager had grabbed the cloth before I arrived, and put it in a bag with my name on, so that was lucky.
Exquisitely stitched small table cloth with hand crocheted edging, in perfect condition.  I 've got it soaking in Napisan at the moment, so once it is rinsed and ironed, it will look even better.

This Asian style shawl or runner was in the bottom of a box of clothes, and it was a fluke that I found it there.  It looks like machine embroidery, but I can guarantee you that it is  hand embroidered.  Traditional Japanese and Chinese embroidery is perfect when done by a master of the technique.  Again, it will look much better once it has been carefully washed and pressed.

Girlfriends Stitchery Club.

I am absolutely determined not to fall by the wayside with this weekly project provided by Lyn Briggs.  She emails each design to the participants promptly on Mondays, and I print it off as soon as I get it.  Last week was crazy, and even though I had everything ready, I just never got started on the third pattern.  So when I found the fourth pattern in my emails tonight, I said "That's it!" and told Ken not to disturb me for ANYTHING.  (He likes to come and see what I'm doing, then tell me what he is watching on t.v and why I should be watching it too).  Anyway, I got my Cupcake done, and the four patch blocks finished ready for making up the quilt in a few weeks.

This is a 'scrappy' mini quilt, so I didn't go out and buy a pack of matching charm squares, as I have a box of my own fabrics already cut up into 5" squares, and want to use them up before I buy anything else.

I have nearly finished the Anniversary memory quilt for our friends, who saw it on Saturday and were delighted with it - phew!  Always a worry when you  make something for a gift and wonder if it will be appreciated or relegated to the back of a cupboard....I've added a tartan border and quilted it, now all I have to do is trim it, and bind it.  I took some photos tonight intending to post them here, but they were no good, so I deleted them and will take better pics when the quilt is finished.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Monthly Xmas project and child's apron.

I have just posted a pic of my April project for the One Xmas Project a Month here.  Very proud of myself to be keeping up with this!  It helps to have made a list in advance for the year, with the pages marked in the magazines that I've chosen, instead of looking through hundreds of patterns every month trying to decide at the last minute.

On Tuesday night I sat up until the early hours to finish this child's apron for the Ballarat Apron Festival.  I had actually finished making the apron about a month ago, but left the Sweet Tooth stitching till the last minute...hopeless.   Entries had to be in by 25th April which of course being a public holiday with no mail deliveries, actually translated to a deadline of 24th April.  I was thinking I could post my entries on Wednesday and they would get to Ballarat on Friday.  Well, I posted them on Wednesday, but it cost me $10 to send them by Express to ensure they would arrive by Thursday.


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Lap quilt top and some stitching done this weekend.

This quilt top is for friends who are celebrating their 25th wedding anniversary this year. It should have been bigger, but I had been stocking up on fat quarters of fabric featuring England and Europe, as our friends travel a lot, and wanted a memory quilt of their trips. I'd bought the fat quarters as I found them on eBay, not paying attention to the colours, so I've ended up with a stash that don't match each other! Stupid twit....(Not only that, I ran out of the paper backed cotton to print the photos from my computer, so I'm waiting for some more to arrive.)  I've made the four patch blocks to co-ordinate with one of the fat quarters, and put some of their photos in the middle of the blocks. I'm going to add another wider border, then will finish off with backing and binding, so it will be okay for either a wall hanging, throw for a coffee table, or just a lap quilt.
I'm making another small quilt like this out of a different fabric and four patch blocks, so will need three more photos for that.
This is the second stitchery for Lyn Biggs' Girlfriends mini quilt. I love doing these little embroideries as they only take half an hour to complete, and it is nice to have something finished so quick, even if it is tiny!

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Preview of linens to be sold at Eltham opshop week after Easter.

These are the linens I wrote about in the previous post. Mostly cutwork, except for the two damask napkins below, the round doiley, the tray cloth and the unworked cloth (last three photos). Some people aren't excited by white work or cut work, and I don't look for it myself, but I have to admit there is a lot of work in this technique, and it isn't something I want to learn!

Sunday, April 13, 2014

More vintage linens, but not for me to keep.

I volunteer at an opshop in Eltham once a week and we get some fabulous donations.  We don't often get linens (apart from manchester such as sheets and towels), but last week someone brought in bags of stuff that appeared to be from a deceased estate (always the most interesting donations!) because there was quite a pile of old cloths and doilies. They weren't badly soiled, but very crumpled, and one of our workers in the sorting room threw them into the bag which goes to the tip.  Fortunately her co-worker caught sight of them and retrieved them for me to look at.  I offered to take them home and bring them back to saleable condition and she was happy for me to do so.

I soaked them in Napisan over night and hung them out in the sun to dry yesterday.  Today I ironed them and they came up as good as new.  I have to take them back to the opshop to be priced and put out to sell, but there are one or two items that I'd like to buy, so I'll ask the manager to reserve them for me.  She is very good about doing that as she knows that we all work hard and is happy to let us have first pick on items that we collect.  Just as well we all have different interests - some girls like books, others collect china and other bric a brac, others love clothes, shoes, bags, but I'm the only one who loves linens!

In the meantime, I have a week to photograph all the linens I've just washed, and will post photos here for you to look at.  It doesn't matter if they don't end up in my own collection; I know some of my followers just like looking at any vintage linens :-)

Two small projects.

I'm actually glad I had to stay home today - I didn't spend any money, and I spent some time sewing!  Fortunately the pain in my arm doesn't extend to my hand, so as long as I support my elbow on the arm of a chair, I can sew quite comfortably. 
I spent some time on the memory quilt project I'm doing for a friend's anniversary, then I finished off a little stitchery that is the first part of a mini quilt project organised by Lyn Briggs here.  The participants received a pattern every Monday, and have a week to stitch it, and put a border around it.  At the end of seven weeks, we have a nice little pile of framed stitcheries which are made up into blocks with charm squares.

I made this little cutie last night after seeing it on Pinterest. I love all these cute things you can make with felt, so when I found out how Pinterest works, I 'subscribed' to any new links to do with felt crafts.  I have no idea who did this lion originally, so I can't give credit where it is due, but if the creator is reading this, please feel free to claim credit! 

So simple - just a white crocheted doiley attached to a round of yellow felt, with the features stitched in black embroidery thread.  And the paws added separately.  Isn't he a darling!

Friday, April 11, 2014

I won't be at the Quilt Convention.

I won't be going to the quilt convention tomorrow.  I have sprained my left elbow and been advised by my osteopath to avoid lifting anything heavy, driving for any length of time, and in general, just rest it.  At first I thought I'd knocked it and was waiting for a bruise to appear, but it didn't, and instead it started to swell. The osteopath did some work on it and said it would take a couple of weeks to heal. I can barely drive to the shops at the end of our street, it aches so much, so there is no way I'd be able to drive the 45 minutes into the city. Ken, bless his heart - offered to drive me in and pick me up, but the way I'm feeling, walking around the convention all day doesn't appeal at all :-(

Saturday, April 05, 2014

A/asian Quilt Convention.

The lastest post on L'ucello's blog reminded me that the Quilt convention is on again next week - gosh it came around fast!   My dear hubby is planning to go to a bike rally of some sort with his mates on the Saturday, and as we are committed elsewhere on Thursday and Friday,  it looks like I'll be going to the Convention on Saturday.  Not really thrilled about going on the weekend with the crowds, but never mind.  Are any of my readers going on Saturday?  It's always fun to meet up with bloggy friends at these crafty fairs!

Friday, April 04, 2014

Second apron finished for Ballarat Festival.

Melody, are you reading this?  I bet you didn't think I'd do it!  Two down, one to go, and at the rate I'm going, I'll have the third apron done within a week! 
This one is the gingham apron that I bought at our opshop - finished but with no embellishment.  I posted a photo here a few weeks ago when I'd appliqued the chicken fabric on to it, but here it is with the ric rac and buttons.

I made something else today - but not an apron.  Ken bought me a Samsung wi fi tablet for an early birthday gift, and I wanted to make a padded cover  for it quickly so I could take it out and about without getting it knocked around.  I used some kitty fabric I've had for years, lined with pink cotton.  I didn't put a strap on it because I won't be 'wearing' it around my neck, as  it fits in my day to day shoulder bag perfectly.  A few days after he bought the tablet, we bought a 4G prepaid modem thingy so I can go online when I'm not in a wi fi area.  The salesman said 'you can just leave it in your hand bag', but I didn't like the idea of that, so I added a little pouch inside my cover, and the modem will stay in there with the tablet.  This is what it looks like with the cover turned inside out so you can see the pouch.  I've also got a small microfibre cloth in there so I can wipe the tablet clean instead of looking for a tissue or something else when it gets fingerprints on it!

There is one press stud under the flap to keep it secure.  I couldn't be bothered doing buttons and buttonholes, and velcro is so hard to stitch on to anything.

Thursday, April 03, 2014

Vintage linens for my collection.

One of the members at the Embroiderers Guild is an opshop volunteer, and keeps me informed of any nice linens that arrive in the shop. She left these at the Guild for me last week and I collected them on Tuesday while I was on duty. I won't disclose here how much I am paying for them, but I can assure you I was very happy to pay the price!

While I was at that end of town, I dropped into the nearby opshop and found this exquisite little suppercloth for $10!