Monday, 21 April 2014

oh, holidays, parting is such sweet sorrow...

Yes that time has come again, albeit too quickly for my liking!
why can't two weeks feel  like four weeks and not two days.
Back to normal tomorrow, I don't know how I am going to get up in time. It has taken me two weeks to perfect sleeping in! How wasteful to throw all that hard work away.
I shouldn't complain though the next round will come around quickly enough and I have had a wonderfully restful break and had lots of creative time.
two more blocks were finished for my live, laugh, love quilt and all the rest of the main blocks prepared.
I still haven't made up my mind about the upper and lower border but there is time to decide.

I made a few more of the little hexie pin cushions, I found lots of photos of these made out of fabric and crochet on the net but didn't find any tutorial to share for those who have asked so stay tuned when I make the next one I will share how I have made them.
Found another sweet little cross stitch design that fits in the hexie shape too.

Being the last day of my holidays I wanted to get to play with some special fabrics.
I have been wanting to use these little 1/2 square triangles that I got from Lynda ever since I sewed and trimmed all 300 or so of them. Boy was that a marathon effort!
so out came the machine and I had a little play....
Three blocks are a great start to I don't know what, but it is a start lol
Once you make a start the rest has to come eventually......right?

well there's no fighting it any longer....... Tomorrow will be here before I know it so I am off to enjoy the rest of today..
have a great week
See you all later in the week for my Christmas item for this month!

Thursday, 17 April 2014

the rest of that list....

Here are the rest of the ticks off the list to share....
 My quilted crow design table runner completed!
 I wanted to use some of the cross stitcheries I had made....
Still need to think of how to use the stitched scissors.....that can go on next month's list
I am very happy with these little pin cushions especially as I didn't have a pattern, I saw one when googling and took it from there. Mine are made from a 1" hexies. Mum has requested a blue one. That is in the works and these will go to the gift box.
 the reverse side...
 Found a way to display my travelling stitchery pattern. I have had this frame for ages and I had to turn the place upside down to find it. Whose idea was it to put it in a safe place? I have been having lots of these 'can't find it' issues lately... must organise better.
I also have another cross stitch finish but I will save that till the 25th as it will be my Christmas item for this month. It has been a long time coming but it is done now.
Besides my progress on my novelty hexies and quilting my Park Avenue, both of which have seen considerable progress, I also had this last finish to share.
My Great Nieces quilt. The top is finished and I just need to decide how it will be quilted.
I just love how bright and cheery it is. For now I will enjoy it a little longer on my quilt rack till it gets quilted.

I am off to do some dreaded housework before I have to go hunting and gathering.
It's ok though as I have already had some crafting time this morning tracing the rest of my Live, Laugh Love blocks. They are ready to go whenever I want to pick them up. The first three are completed and I am very happy with the result.
Hope you have a safe and happy Easter break

Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Project list progresses...

These holidays are just passing too quickly but I have been making the very most of them....
Today I went with my friend to see The Grand Budapest Hotel. The reviews have been good and it has so many wonderful actors that I just had to see it. After all Margaret Pomeranz gave it a 5 star rating!
I am so glad I went I think it was a fantastic movie, quirky, funny and very sweet.
The only distraction I found was watching Ralph Fiennes playing a great character beautifully but I kept seeing Lord Voldemort when he spoke! Once I got over that I loved his performance. All the other characters were wonderful too. Would happily see it again.

Luckily I have been having lots of time to dedicate to crafting too and I have made a tick next to every item on my list that I shared last month on my blog.  Some projects needed to be completed and others just needed some progress.
All those ticks encouraged me to start my new project Live, laugh, love quilt by Viv's Creations that I bought from Mrs Martins quilt shop at the Monbulk show. I made a start on the weekend and I have completed my first complete block . That little box on the side contains a stash of little berries. I am hoping that I have cut out enough for all the blocks. I am so happy with the finished block. It is stitched on Linen and I have used felted wool for the baskets and berries.

My first items I will share from my list are my Sweet stitches minis. One has been completed and the second has had borders added and is now basted ready for quilting and the third needed to be finished stitching.
quilted and bound
stitching done

a group shot.. one last one to stitch, that can be for next month's list.

love my pile of minis.

Mr Boo with his borders.
Another project was to complete a blanket of love to Send to Cheryll. It was posted over a week ago and has been received by Cheryll. I have enjoyed making these little blankets for her so much. 

Well that's enough photos for this post.
Next time I will share the rest of my project progresses.
Hope you are all having a great week!

Saturday, 12 April 2014

stitching with friends..

Yesterday and today I had the pleasure of sharing the days with some lovely crafty friends.
Yesterday Rosalie and Liz came over to my house for a stitch in, mum came along too and we were quite industrious in between maintaining our energy levels with  food.
This morning the sun came out after some terribly drizzly days so I bolted out of bed and organised some washing and then got ready to head to Gisborne to spend the day with the wonderful Gisborne girls.
There was meant to be a car load of 'city and outer suburban' girls but I ended up being the only representative from the 'burbs' as circumstances prevented the others coming. A contingent of 1...
There were a few other Gisborne ladies that were at the Patch n quilt stitching day too and they were very friendly and welcoming. This shop is gorgeous and has such a great variety of fabrics.
It was quite an industrious group and a great variety of projects too.
Of course there was photographic evidence of this event..
 Tracy, Annette and Marina (not me another Marina lol, I haven't started talking about myself in the third person)
 Sue, Tania and Donna....

Sue, Tracy, Me, Tania, Marina, Annette, Marg, Donna and Chris
(Now we have worked out who the naughty one is in the group. I didn't get in trouble once till I was at the end of the line up with someone who shall remain nameless.....)
There is also a photo of me buying up fabric out there in blogland...... Oh no it has popped up here too....

Your honour, I object, the evidence is circumstantial at the very least.....
I put to you that these said fabrics attached themselves to my person and could not be removed. Therefore I had no option but to take pity on these miserable fabrics and promise to take them home and care for them to the best of my abilities!
 These two fabrics were 'need to' buy so that I can tick another project off my to do list... that is proof enough of 'need'.

Now where is the crafting you may ask...
I thought seeing that I have been making such great progress on my list I could start this project that I bought from the Monbulk quilt show.
Made a decent start today.

Thought I would also share some of my easter decorations. I am not one to celebrate Easter anymore but I put my mini on display for this month and I thought I needed some more little decorations to add to my entry table. We have a wonderful Bed Bath & table shop in our new shopping centre and they have the most adorable decorations for easter. Not too close to the real meaning of easter but lots of prettiness, that's for sure.

these and the white tree were reduced by 50% and I couldn't resist them.
Well that's it for today's outing.... I will be back soon to show all the progress done on the projects on my list. Loving the holidays!!
I'm now off to make the borders for Mr Boo..
Hope you are having a great weekend!
Big hug and thanks to the Gisborne Girls for a wonderful day! (thanks Sue for letting me nick some of your pics too)


Sunday, 30 March 2014

and the winner is......


thanks to those that entered for the pattern.
If you can send me your address Jeanette I will pop the travelling pattern in the mail to you...


Tuesday, 25 March 2014

a christmas item and a travelling pattern and a list.......

well ring the bells, I have managed to add to my Christmas basket for the first time this year!
two little postcards- Bronwyn Hayes designs.

Now for the travelling pattern.....
Earlier this month I won a travelling pattern from Anthea's blog.
I managed to finish stitching it over the weekend and it just needs to be sewn up into something or framed.
Not sure which just yet.
I have stitched it on Linen, (not sure which count) and used cottage garden threads no 414. This is the same thread I used in the christmas stitchery above.

This pattern started it's journey in South Africa farewelled by Cucki. Since leaving Cucki in 2011 it has travelled to the UK then Poland and more recently to Western Australia and now to Melbourne.
Thanks to Cucki for sharing list bit of fun.
 Anywhoo I can't say it hasn't been fun but it's time to quickly send it on it's way.

Here are the rules if you would like the travelling pattern to visit at your house:

1. You must have a blog. 
2. Comment on this post only, saying you would like the chance to stitch it.
3. You must have an active blog to participate; if you have a blog but never post on it you won't be chosen to be the next stitcher.
4.The stitcher who receives the Travelling Pattern must stitch it within an acceptable time frame, finish it & share the finished piece on their blog. Stitch with your choice of fabric & threads; finish it how you wish.
4.Then the stitcher must offer up the Travelling Pattern for another stitcher to use and it will be off on its travel again. You only send the pattern, no 'extras' are required.

Now that all that stitching has been done it's time to get back to that quilting that just won't go away.
Last post I pondered writing a list of projects that I have on the go....I hope to tick some of these off in April.
. So here goes...
  • Sweet stitches winter mini to be quilted  quilted and binding on 28th March
  • Sweet stitches  Give thanks to be stitched stitched.
  • Sweet stitches Mr Boo to have borders pieced and then quilted borders done, basted ready for quilting.
  • Christmas Item for April done!
  • Some progress on Park Avenue quilting in the hoop and two flowers quilted. total of 21 all up-27 to go.
  • At least a row progress on my novelty hexies toptwo rows of flowers added, just need to add some stepping stones.
  • Make up the cross stitcheries into something  travelling pattern framed, two bees made into pincushions.
  • Finish Blanket of love- done and sent to Cheryll
  • Finish my great nieces quilt-top all pieced needs quilting
  • finish quilting my wool applique runner  quilted and bound 26th March
I wonder how many I will get done in April....I will have two weeks of holidays in April so that is going to be a bonus.
I am off now to get stuck in to that wool applique runner, am on the home stretch with that one so I am hoping to get one tick off the list by the weekend!
Happy crafting


ps don't forget to mention if you would like to win the travelling pattern in your comment and I will draw a winner on the 30th of March.

Friday, 21 March 2014

a whole lot of stitching going on

Stitching seems to be distracting me from quilting but I am enjoying doing some projects that I have on my list of to do's.
My great nieces christening quilt is progressing but won't make it for Sunday gift giving. I know my niece will understand. I just need to buy some fabric for the border of the stitchery and then I can work out the size and how to arrange the hourglass blocks
Little miss kitten will grace the centre, you may recognise her from my blanket of love that I made.
 She's been spruced up in vintage red and should blend well with the Scrumptious fabrics.
Another little blanket of love is in the process of coming together.
I have reused a pattern I bought and used a few years ago, and Ella and Skysie design. It has lovely little stitcheries that suit this project. Here are some big pics of a few of my favourite ones...

the contrasting blocks and border ready to go, perhaps the next school holidays' project.....
Another stitching project is one that came to me from Anthea of Hibiscus stitches. (you can click on the link to see Antheas cross stitch)  It is a travelling cross stitch pattern. Thsi pattern started it's journey in 2011 leaving south Africa where next it spent a few years in the UK then made it's way to Poland and from there it arrived in Western Australia.
It is a lovely little design and of course I had to start it straight away as i had prepared the linen and cottons as soon as I had won the pattern.
Some left over cottage garden threads from my Christmas stitching was a perfect pick.
Once I have finished stitching the pattern it will be ready to go onto it's next home.
I have prepared some blocks for my new project but have been a little side tracked with these other bits and pieces. Won't be long......
Definitely need to make that list!
Think I might do that right now....
Have a wonderful weekend and hope it involves some crafting

Anthea is also trying to organise a bloggers meet in Western Australia. If she was a little closer I'd be there in a flash as we all know how much fun meets are.... If you are interested pop over to Antheas blog and touch base as she would love to hear from you.

Saturday, 15 March 2014

a bloggy friend and a new project...

I'll start with the new project..
Today Hub and I headed off to the Monbulk quilt show. Boy there were some beautiful quilts.
I met up with the lovely Mrs Martin, she is such a friendly person and funny to boot.
As I was leaving I saw a collection of beautiful quilts by Viv's creations. Karen is still able to supply these patterns if you would like them. I saw one that I just had to have.
The pattern photo doesn't do it justice at all but it is so lovely in the flesh so I went back in and bought the pattern. There was also a breathtaking quilt called the unknown quilt by Max and Louise pattern co.I resisted as there is some incredibly tiny foundation piecing in the centre piece but you never know...... It was so tempting as it has lots of hexie flowers and the one they had on show was all in blues and tan/creams!
There was another tempter that I am thinking seriously about, a very sweet design by Peaches and Patches called Natures Gifts. Adorable stitcheries with some piecing.
I was very happy with my buy and a few extra goodies made their way into my bag on the way out.
Leonie West was there with her westalee rulers and I stopped by to let her know that I had tried her technique for piecing quite successfully if I may say so myself. Must have been because I was sitting in the front row of the presentation?
Here is my new project...
When I got home I couldn't wait to get started so I nipped over to Jemima's before they closed to get the linen for the stitcheries and a fabric for the borders. I hope to trace at least one block tonight
 these lovely cards just had to come home with me. The stall had some other gorgeous ones with sewing notions and embroideries. I couldn't resist the hexies though.
 Had to have this pin cushion... not sure if it will be for me of for the gift box..

Now as to that bloggy friend in the title.....
Teresa from All things Vintage and I have met a few times when she has ventured to Melbourne and as she was down for the Let's get stitched event another meet was in order.  A day time meet was a little difficult so Hub said he would drive me to meet Teresa for dinner.
It was so wonderful to meet up with Teresa again. We had a lovely dinner and catch up. If it wasn't for hub having to go to work the next day we would have stayed later but we were happy with our catch up.
There was only one official photo as my phone and hubs phone were playing up.
Thanks Teresa for the pic and making time to catch up!
One day I may make it to your neck of the woods.....

Teresa gave me a lovely surprise pressie brought on her travels during the LGS weekend.

Hope you are all having an inspiring weekend!

Friday, 14 March 2014

by popular demand....

picture from sbs website 

Italian Ricotta Cake
 Now I was starting to type this recipe out but decided to see if there was a link to the recipe on the Feast website and ta da!! there is....
so here is the link
The only difference I found was the cake took longer than the 1hr cooking time. I think it was closer to 2hrs.
Just see how you go at the one hour mark and see if it needs more. In my oven when I checked the cake it was still very anaemic looking so I left it in and kept checking it till it had browned a bit on the top (the same as the picture).

ps there are some other ricotta cake recipes on the same page! Yummm Ricotta it practically makes it health food!

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

love long weekends....

The long weekend was a real charger for the batteries. Like a mini holiday..
I made a mental list of some finishes that needed doing and while working on these had a brain wave.
That can be really dangerous!
Remember the two little bliss fabric quilts that I have mentioned recently.... well the recipients of those quilts have a little baby sister who is being christened in a few weeks and of course she will need a quilt too. So......out came the rotary cutter and a lovely charm pack. I can't remember which of the Bonnie and Camille range this one is but I am sure that I can get some extra metreage to make borders and sashings.
I started off with half square triangles but they just didn't seem to suit what I had in mind so after some cake and a cuppa I decided to cut them again and make little hour glass blocks.....
 (by the way the cake is a baked ricotta cheescake, and it was a big winner here, and yes I made it myself)
At our March Bluegum quilters there was a special speaker, Leonie West of Westalee rulers.
I didn't take part in the workshop but listened to a very informative presentation which offered some very useful tips on accurate piecing.
Leonie's quilts had the most amazing points, I don't think I saw one that was mismatched at all! I thought this piecing would be a bit of a practice in what I had learnt.
Leonie's method worked a treat and I was very excited by the quality of my points matching, sad aren't I?
Lots of careful pinning and matching really paid off.
 Here is the final result, in need of a little trimming. Aren't they cute. Now to decide how to put them together as I need to incorporate a stitchery, of course.
I had some forgotten bits that needed to be finished so here they are..
this will be ready for next Valentine's day. It just needed the binding.
these two little stitcheries will be fully revealed for my 1 Christmas Item for this month so I will just show a little peek for now.
Hooray, I will be back on track with a small start for my christmas gift box.
Hope the week is going well for you