Friday, 31 July 2015

July ufo

July's ufo to work on was my little houses. I was looking forward to some progress and didn't even open the box of houses till the 29th and I realised there were only a few more days of July to go!
With all the sashings and corner stones already sewn on this wasn't the big job it might have seemed.
I really wanted to get moving so I retreated to the sewing room and zoom, zoom, zoomed.
Here I was playing around with the borders. I was leaning to a thin red border too but it just didn't look right.

 Borders on and red blocks in the corners.
I so love these little houses. Now just to get quilting.
 Maisie giving the seal of approval.
I also finished my July Baltimore block. This has been a favourite of myself and mum.
I feel I am improving and these are the neatest leaves so far. The flowers came together reasonably well too I feel.


After a speedy order of bias tape from Jemima's I have made a start on miss Lucy Kemper. Unfortunately the bias stems seemed to have puckered a little too much for my liking when I sewed the stems down so this morning they have been unpicked and it's back to the drawing board.
Pics will follow once some progress has been made, again.
Sun is shining this morning and Coffee and I headed out for a walk nice and early. Still lots of frost on the grass lawns but it was beautiful. Just gives me a great start to the day. I will be very happy once the sun decides to get out of bed a bit earlier so we can resume our walking routine.
Hope you all have a great weekend
Marina

Sunday, 26 July 2015

No more steps, just jump!

After a morning out and about, this afternoon I was itching for some fabric fondling.
Yesterday afternoon I got out the backing fabric for my tribute to Lucy kemper project and cut, cut, cut!
When I bought the fabric there was less than 3 metres left on the bolt but the lovely sales assistant worked out if this would be enough and it was thankfully.
So the backgrounds were cut and next step to arrange and collect my blues from my stash...
So pretty but would I have the courage to attempt to cut them and arrange them for the first block
 Well the answer is yes! When that inspirational lightning bolt hits there is no dodging it.
Like Ben Franklin flying his kite
The photo isn't quite true to colour as the above photo is a better pic of the colours. It is also missing the stems.
I wanted to have a go at balancing out the dark, medium and light fabrics and I am pretty happy with the results. If I had had the correct bias tape it would've been stuck down and my block would be on it's way!
A trip to spotlight will be in order this week.
Would love some feedback on what you think of my shade choices as I feel a little out of my depth.


The wintery weather doesn't encourage many flowers in the garden but our trusty Camelias are putting on a great show. 
Here are some of the blooms that are adding colour to our garden at the moment.

 this flower has some blooms that are as large as a large bread and butter plate.



well that's another weekend done and dusted.....
I'm off to work on my blueberry ripple blanket as I am definitely on the home stretch.
Have a great week
Marina

Monday, 20 July 2015

one more finish closer.....

Yesterday the sun was shining so after a morning walk with Coffee I earmarked the day for finishing the large  machine appliqued baltimore. There was one block to go and then the sashings and borders.
Hip hip hooray it got done. I took it to work to show my colleague that had requested the make and she loved it. I was half hoping that she wouldn't like it and I could keep it for myself as I am loving this project more than when I started it.  The original was a big 9 block quilt but as it is more of a throw for a child, four blocks were about my limit. Keeping it simple.
I ventured out in the frosty garden this morning to take a pic...
 
It will have the binding done in the red. It seems so difficult to get a pic that shows the colours accurately. They are quite bright and cheery.
Off to the quilter's this week hopefully....
and now just because some of you asked for it......
some pics of the entire Park Avenue Hexie quilt..
 and this one just because I love those fussy cut birds.
Last week I did some cutting out of 6 Sweet William blocks so they are all ready to be pieced.
Now that the machine baltimore is done I am one step closer to my new start!
Woo Hoo!
hope you all have a wonderful week
Marina


Thursday, 16 July 2015

a finish and a start

The Holidays are over and we are off and running again.
It was applique class this week and I was excited to get going on the new block and catching up with the others to see their lovely colour combinations.
I only just finished my fourth block in time to start the fifth.
block four
block five marked out and ready to go.

there was one big finish for the holidays too.... with the cold weather on the weekend I spent most of the time finishing of my Park Avenue hexie quilt and hooray it all got done. The binding went on Sunday night and it is ready to go. It will be a bed runner for our bed.
I'm even game to show some of the quilting from the reverse side..
 I'm so happy with this finished.
Some stats..... I started this quilt in 2010.(along with quite a few large projects)
The hexies all put together by the end of 2012,  Borders appliqued and sewn on to hexie top in May 2013.
October 2013 it was basted ready for handquilting. Started handquilting in April 2014. Completed July 2015

the gaps in the lattice quilting are where the wool appliqued pieces are.
now for the something new......
I thought seeing as this was a big finish I could indulge a big start.
A trip to Castlemaine last week saw some beautiful fabrics for the background of my new project.
I am going to try this quilt from Irene's new book. My plan is to use only my blue stash of reproduction fabrics.
I am so excited that I have cut out the freezer papers for the first block.
Is anyone else planning on making a quilt from this book? Would love to have some company...

Needing to give my quilting hand a rest so I am spending some time with an old faithful friend.
Being a big fan of the films you can forget a lot of the beautiful detail that is in the book. So many things that were left out. I know they can't include everything and I do love the movies but I think I love the book more.
It's enjoyable to just spend time between the pages and take it all in.

A favourite quote from the part I am reading now is...
' .... Many that live deserve death. And some that die deserve life. Can you give it to them? Then do not be too eager to deal out death in judgement. For even the very wise cannot see all ends.......'


Hope those that are enjoying the icy weather we are having are keeping warm!
cheers for now
Marina


Tuesday, 7 July 2015

friends and craftiness

Yesterday I got to spend a lovely day with the gisborne and city girls, roped mum in for a day out too. We were missing  a few of the girls sadly but we need some people to represent us in the work force while we were all slacking off. otherwise engaged.
Not much crafting seemed to get done but there was laughing and eating and silliness.
Sue was photo snapper for the day and she has posted some pics on her blog.
I had a lovely surprise from the city girls who brought me a wonderful gift for my neverending birthday.
I had done a great job of hiding it from everyone but once they knew they brought me this lovely clock for my Sewing room.
It's gorgeous..
 it has a sweet pendulum that swings to and fro.
 Here it is in it's perfect place!
 This afternoon Hub who played coffee barista for the girls yesterday, put up the clock for me.
Thankyou so much girls I have been annoyed at not having a clock in my room. Annoyed no more!
It matches well with these gifties from my sister in law. These haven't quite made it to the sewing cave yet. I am enjoying them in the kitchen.
How many crafty friends can you squeeze into a small sewing room?
As many as you want!
 It was quite fun yesterday when all the girls wanted to come in to see my sewing room. I really love my special space. It has lots of reminders of all my crafty friends and non crafty friends, childhood memories-mine and my boys. It is very much me and yesterday it was filled with laughter as we all squished in.
It was a bit quieter in there today, just the gentle ticking of the clock and the steady hum of my sewing machine.
I worked on one of the applique blocks- total....Two of these blocks are now done (minus the leaves) 1 completely done with the leaves and all.

some crochet and applique has been dabbled in too. Do I have an attention issue?
This is what I added a few stitches to yesterday when the girls were here....not many mind you!
Definitely need to get some stitching action happening too....add it to the list.
hope you are having a great week!
marina

Sunday, 5 July 2015

ufo update and bits and pieces

At the start of the year allpeoplequilt's.com had a ufo challenge for this year. I thought it would be great to play along from the side lines and perhaps make some progress on some ufo's.
You had to chose 12 projects, my list started in February.
Thought it was time to have a little stocktake.
  1. little houses -July
  2. Shirt Challenge (not really a ufo but added it to the list) started in January-top pieced borders to be done
  3. Fig tree blocks 1/2 square triangles.
  4. Sweet Stitches -April- no progress
  5. Park Avenue Hexies June-most of quilting done, one border to do.completed in July 2015
  6. stitcheries -March-2 stitcheries made up
  7. hexie runner -Made up in April, completed 
  8. spare park avenue hexies -May-no progress
  9. Lisa Bonegan sew along -February-completed and quilted
  10. second Lisa Bonegan sew along -top completed in February, some wool applique still to do, thento be quilted.
  11. hexie scarves -June-finished x2
  12. clamshells

So some progress done. This month it is the turn of my little houses and I am looking forward to working with these again. Fingers crossed I can tick some progress off on these by the end of the month.

New things have been happening here too. I am chomping at the bit to start a project from Irene's book but I need to hold off just a little bit more and finish some sewing commitements,
The main one is a quilt I said I would make for a work colleague's daughter.
Friday I decided to prep the remaining blocks and get to appliqueing the remaining leaves on block 1.
A photo all together to keep me enthused......
The blocks are around 20" and I will add some sashing and borders to pad it out a bit.
The lover right block is almost complete it just needs the centres on the pink flowers.
I am machine appliqueing the blocks. The design is from a homespun magazine.
After a little sewing time yesterday I have done most of another block, minus the leaves. They will be added after I have finished the other parts of the block. Ideally I would love to finish them all these holidays. Fingers crossed.

After running out of quilting thread that activity has halted this week and I have kept my hands busy with some crocheting..
A scarf for a friend

I made a start on last months Baltimore block..
Lots and lots of leaves to applique, I better get a wriggle on! I was very happy with how my flowers turned out. They are the best I have done so far, or maybe the busy fabric just compensates a bit more? either way it's a win!


Hope you are having a wonderful weekend. I am looking forward to catching up with some lovely crafty friends this week, gotta love the holidays!
Happy days

Marina

Saturday, 27 June 2015

a day of retail bliss!

For my birthday that we don't like to mention, the girls at work gave me a gift voucher for Patch and quilt in Gisborne. This was an amazing gift that I was looking forward to using!
Elyte had mentioned a trip to Patch and quilt to attend the book signing for Irene Blanck's wonderful book of patterns published by quiltmania. I hit the road with Thelma and Louise (aka Anne and Elyte) and we headed off to Gisborne. Now a visit to Gisborne would not be complete without a visit with the Gisborne girls so we met up for Coffee then headed off for some retail therapy and to see Mary and Irene.
Of course we had a fantastic and frivolous time and I even made a new friend. Wonderful isn't it?
would you like to see my goodies....
I have been inspired to add to my blues stash, some gorgeous fabrics and some wonderful inspiration in Irene's book. There are quite a few of the projects that are on my new to do list, now that I am such a fan of needleturn applique. I also booked in for a class with Irene for August-so exciting.
Can you tell that there was some laughing involved?
 Here's a pic of my companions for the day.....don't they look so demure and lovely?
 Well not always.....they can be silly and lovely. and you knew I would post it didn't you?
the silly girls are ... tania oops meant tracee, marg, tania, anne and elyte at the back

thankyou girls for a wonderful, fun and inspiring day!!  Sorry I didn't share


Now to share some quilting because some of you asked for it....
Nearly finished this edge border, My stitches are getting a bit neater. Another border to quilt and then it will be on with the binding. I can't wait but I know there will be a few more weeks to go.


Hope you all have a wonderful crafty weekend. I hope to make a start on my latest baltimore block.I am way behind well according to my agenda anyway.
Happy days!
cheers
marina



















Monday, 22 June 2015

some pretty pictures..

Nothing much happening here, quilting is filling most of the crafting time I get. 
I am working on the end panels of my Park Avenue quilt. I am quilting a lattice design and I am liking the effect.
I had quilted around the wool applique but decided to unquilt it as there were too many uneven and puckered parts. 
As I wasn't well I didn't stay at applique class last week, just popped in long enough to pick up the pattern and any tips that might help. I still haven't started mine as I can't seem to find my bias maker. I'll get to it this week hopefully. In the meantime I have some pics of the rest of Mum's Once upon a time blocks and her baltimore blocks. She has gone great guns with her recent block. I think she is going to leave me for dead this month.
block for June
 

the lovely princess...
the frog prince and regal accessories.. There are two of each block.
Won't be long and mum will be sewing them together.
Hopefully next post there will be some progress on one of my projects...
have a great week
Marina

Sunday, 14 June 2015

popping in

It's a beautiful sunny day in Melbourne this morning and I have had a rotten cold this past week which has seriously curbed my enthusiasm for most activities, including sewing.
It's been a lovely two weeks at home, besides the cold, and back to work tomorrow.
Yesterday was a day I was hanging out for, a great day spent at a sew-in with Sunbury quilt group.
Anne, Robyn, Elyte, Tania, Marg and Sue were there and we had a back up Marina as well (another Marina from Gisborne) another new friend too, Gabbi. Funnily Marina and I seem to sit together when we have been at sewing things. Can make for interesting conversations when someone calls our name or when we talk about each other as it sounds like we are talking about ourselves in the third person.
Sue was taking some incriminating pics , I was busy stitching (for some of the time) but I am a little worried about some of the photos that may turn up lol. There may have been some silliness.
It was lovely to have a laughing day with the girls thanks for the great day out!
I have some lovely pics of some gorgeous gifts that have made their way to my place and to the sew in yesterday. I wouldn't even mention the occasion but I do want to acknowledge the lovely gifts so I have to put it out there.  
 this parcel of lovelies arrived from Els in the Netherlands. Those fabrics are going to make some gorgeous Sweet William baskets... and the little dolly is an 'upside down doll' so cute.
 this loveliness arrived from Fiona (bubz rugz) Such beautiful stitches! I have always wanted to stitch this design. No need now I have a beautiful one of my own!
 A gorgeus pincushion from Robyn very regal don't you think (and so appropriate) and a very pretty charm pack from Elyte, my mind is already swirling with options for using this!
 Straight to the pincushion shelf for this treasure!
 thought I would share these as they have a sewing theme, from my wonderful SIL.
And the reason for all these gifties, you might have guessed...

 This morning our no 3 son insisted we come out and look at his car, this is his baby and he is slowly doing things to it to improve it (and sap money). It is a lovely old Panel van from the '70's. It can only be driven in fine weather as he doesn't want it to get wet and it has to be garaged so it isn't in the weather. What a princess!
Well we had to come out immediately to look at the tyre rims. Well aren't they amazing (yeah whatever)!
I told him I must take a photo and blog about it it's so amazing as I am sure my crafty friends would be dying to see it........(please insert sarcasm here)
Just had to share the excitement and joy with you girls.

It's so amazing it deserves a close up...

There you are motherly caring and sharing done for me now..
Now will share just one more pic... Had to have a play with Sweet William blocks just to get an idea of how it was looking. It will need to be a bit bigger but I just need to work out how much bigger. I might even make the blocks all facing the one way? Another option.  It's so exciting to see them together. Won't be long and I will get to making the extra baskets. In the meantime there is still some quilting to do...and a quilt to bind and wips that need attention, ufo's to work on etc etc etc... I know you all understand...

Hope you have a wonderful Sunday
cheers
Marina