Saturday, 20 December 2014

an Invitation...

to come and visit my Sewing room....
A sewing room has been my dream for a long time...but it is a dream no more.
A not so little bird left the nest a month ago and after the initial period of mourning of about 5 seconds the battle was on as to who would get the newly vacated soon to be spare room! Woo hoo I won!!
The room was mine and I took over with much enthusiasm and happiness.
We don't have the largest of homes so it is still a bit of a storage room with things belonging to the two fledglings being kept here. The room isn't huge but it will serve my purpose perfectly.
would you like to have a tour?



a place for all my treasures...I am so excited to have them on display in my room so that I can enjoy them. Lots of lovely items that have been gifts over the years.

the bed was a 3/4 bunk and we have left it as is for now as it provides ample storage under it at the moment.

 Well that's it. I know it's small, a little crowded and ecclectic in it's contents but it reflects it's owner well.
Hope you have enjoyed the tour.... but is there any craftiness to show?
Of course there is, it's not much but there doesn't seem to have been much enthusiasm or inspiration at the moment. I have some projects on the cards for these holidays and I will be sure to share.
These two toppers made their way to new homes for Christmas.
 Some loveliness has arrived her also...I will share a few of the arrivals
This gorgeous pin cushion from Robyn, one of the lovely city girls. It is in a vintage salt keeper.
She made it perfectly for me! It has happily joined my pin cushion collection.
 this pretty ornament arrived from Fiona,
 And this one was part of a gorgeous package from Els in the Netherlands.
 If you have lasted this long through all those photos-thanks...
I wish I could share the beautiful fragrance from these gardenias from my garden. They only last a short time but they make an impression to last.


 I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe Christmas shared with friends and loved ones.

Huge hugs to you all
Marina


Saturday, 22 November 2014

A finish and some Christmas crafting.

It seems the past month has just flown.. It feels like the whole year has flown by.
I haven't been idle in this past month there has been little bits of stitching and some socialising. There was the Mill Rose get together which was such a wonderful day. I call it Ballan Therapy! Laughing, eating, and crafting with a wonderful group of crafty friends.
I didn't take any pics but others had lots that were shared on their blogs after the day.
A finished baby quilt was delivered early in the month, I haven't heard yet as to how it was received but I am hoping it was welcome. I must say it was one I was very happy with, making it and once finished.


There have been a few Christmassy obligations to be met too. The first of which I forgot to take photos of..they were my swap gifts for the Mill Rose get together. I made a little brooch and a yo yo christmas tree.
After much swapping and stealing by  bad santa tactics Melody and I ended up with our own gifts and she kindly offered to take my gift and give me hers which was a lovely ornament and apron.
I thought I should get a little organised with some ornaments for this year's gifting too..
this pattern is a freebie from Rasberry Rabbits blog- Holly Hare. Couldn't stop at just one and had to make one a little boy hare.They were quite quick to sew up.
A bit of enthusiasm is a contagious thing so onto the next project.
These stitcheries have been completed for a few weeks just waiting to be made into tags..
I dug into my stash of ribbons and bells for all of these decorations.
But wait there's more....
These Theodora Cleave buttons have been hanging around for awhile and they just needed to get made up.
same theory.. why make just one. It's just as easy to make a few as to make just one!
That bell stash and felted wool stash is going down....
 These are the backs... Some pretty fabrics that had been waiting to be used too.

One last Christmassy item is for a swap gift too.
This is also a freebie design, by Crabapple Hill designs. I made it a little smaller than the pattern.

Phew there you go....
I think I am Christmassed out? I hope this makes up for the lack of Christmas crafting during the year Narelle?

Here is a pic which comes with a moral to the story..
On Monday I was pulling the retractable vacumm cord out so that I could vacuum. I usually put in a huge effort, as if I was starting a lawn mower to be honest, so that most of the cord comes out in one hit. Well....., now this is the lesson part of the story..... make sure you do this in an open space and not close to the open door.
I slammed my hand on the door handle behind me and it hurt so much that I couldn't even utter an expletive!
The ice came out and so did a massive egg on the back of my hand. It has been getting better all week but is still a little tender. No breaks in my hand just a lovely bruise that changes colour every day...
Today we have lovely yellow tinge and a lovely purply pink band across the knuckles. Thankfully the swelling is only slight compared to the past couple of days. I couldn't even wear my rings.
Mind you it didn't hamper my sewing much.
thanks for sticking with this long post.
Did I mention it is also my 500th post!!!
Thanks for visiting and listening to my ramblings and encouraging me along the way with my blogging and with my crafty endeavours and most of all thankyou for your Friendships.

Have a great weekend
Marina


Sunday, 26 October 2014

some holiday happiness

I have had the end of this week at home and it has been a mini whirlwind of crafting, not quite on the scale of term holidays but there were a few must do's that needed to get done.
 this little stitchery was finished a few weeks ago. It is stitched with the gorgeous cottage thread that I was sent by Cheryl in her giveaway. I couldn't wait to use it.
 I finished this stitchery this week. It was my project that I took to Queensland with me.
I wasn't going to sating stitch all of it but after some unpicking It was the only way to go. Just wished I had been a little more careful in my tracing...
I have been enjoying doing lots of stitching but I really need to purpose them into finished projects!
Maybe next holidays?

 I spent a day this week having a play with my shirt fabrics....it is meant to be secret crafting business but Tracee showed a peek of hers and to repay the compliment I will show a peek of mine....



what would holidays be without some retail therapy!
A work colleague has asked me to make a boys quilt for her 3 y/o. A trip to GJ's was in order but they are only offering their discount now on cuts of 50 cm for their 25% special. Still picked up some bargain fats though.
I am going to make the Boys story quilt minus the stitcheries.  I have also added some brights from my stash so I think I will have a great assortment.
 Thought I would try these to tackle some more applique with Sweet William. Still haven't plucked up the courage to get back to them.....but soon
I have done the borders on the baby's quilt that I am doing for a friend with the little vintage animals stitcheries from a previous post. I sandwiched it and basted it so it is ready for some hand quilting. I think I am crazy! It is only a metre squared so hopefully won't take too long. fingers crossed. I will share a pic once it is done.
 A last pic of a beautiful stitchery Teresa gifted me when we had our get together in Queensland.
Michelle's stitchery designs are so pretty and how about getting one already done? Sounds good to me.
I will need to organise this into a finish too...

well it's back to work tomorrow...
It feels like I have been away for ages.... is this a sign of a rested holiday?
Off to hunt and gather... have had no car for a few days so it will be good to get out in my car instead of having to walk everywhere.
Hope you have had a crafty weekend too
cheers
marina

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

been up North.....


but not North to Alaska, north to Queensland.
Hub and I have been away for several days visiting the gorgeous Gold Coast and Brisbane.
It was a first for me and definitely won't be the last time I go there. The weather was perfect.
 Lots of walking to sightsee and there was lots to see.
I have to say I absolutely loved Brisbane it is such a beautiful city with easy access and beautiful walking tracks along the river. Everything was so amazing to look at, the flora and fauna was gorgeous.

I have lots of pics to share hope you are up for it?
Roll the pictures

beautiful clean beach at Surfers Paradise. I did stick a toe in but that's about it.
The sand squeaked when you walked on it!
The spectacular walkway along southbank in Brisbane. This archway continued for ages. No 1 son said that Hub should have told me a knock knock joke to make me smile. Smarty pants..


Fern growing on a live tree. Amazing!
Botanical gardens at Mt Tambourine
taste testing at a brewery on Mt Tambourine.... Yum, lovely lunch as well.
Carved Pagoda in Brisbane. I had to censor some of my pics as it had lots of fertility symbols and they needed to be PG.

Beautiful old home along the river and a superb Jacaranda tree in full bloom. The city was full of them and they put on a fantastic show.


amazing huge tree near where we were staying.

there were lots of these little fellas along the river.
of course there was some stitching, with a lovely view

Story Book bridge over the river... I tried to walk over it but only made it as far as the girders as my fear of heights overcame me and I skulked back to the main path and could breathe freely again.
The highlight of my trip to Brisbane was a get together with these wonderful, wonderful ladies!
I can't believe I got to meet up with you all and repay the visits you have made down south,  thankyou so much for making my holiday!
We sat and chattted for ages and laughed and ate.
Lucky we didn't have to pay 'butt parking' by the hour at the cafe! We would have been in for a hefty bill.
Fiona, Teresa, Me and Michelle.

Here is my lovely meal... it was the best and I didn't leave a scrap.
Now there was one last photo that was taken but not shared as it looked too dark on my phone but with downloading and enhancing it turned out ok..
As hub was taking the photo Fiona remarked that if we leaned forward we would look thinner...
Of course I wanted to look stick thin if that was the case and I tried to lean forward while holding onto the rail behind me. We all started laughing.. so here it is girls.. the silly photo:
Does it make me look any thinner?
I love laughing with friends
xx
Now that we are home I will catch up with blogs, I have been lurking but only had my phone to visit with.
Next post I will show a little surprise giftie I received.
cheers
marina



Friday, 10 October 2014

baby blocks and baskets

Well it has been back to normal here this last week.  Thankfully the week has flown but holidays seem like they are a distant memory.
I have been working on my stitcheries and I have only Miss Kitty to go. Then I will need to think about how to put them together. I have an idea but it just needs to translate to actions.
I do enjoy these stitcheries though..

 At the end of last week I put these baskets together...
I thought I was so clever that they pieced together so nicely, reasonable job of the points but somewhere along the line I have sewn a smidge too much in the seam allowance and these blocks will probably be smaller than the others when they are completed. I will plod along and see where it ends up.
After some consultation with some of my cheerleaders I am not going to worry about it and hopefully it will work out.
(fingers crossed)

Tomorrow I am off to Kilmore Quilter's Quilt in with Liz and Rosalie.
Which reminds me I need to pack some crafting to do while I am there.....
...After I have cleaned this messy house and done the hunting and gathering!

Hope you all have a crafty weekend
Marina

Friday, 3 October 2014

some ups and downs..

Just when you think things are working out well, look over your shoulder because trouble is sneaking up behind you....
Sweet william and I had a falling out yesterday and yes there were nearly some tears, some bad words and some things thrown. So who does a girl turn to? Her mother of course!
 I thought I had worked out the process for my blocks and that they were coming together ok but when I went to make the baskets for the appliques I hit a snag. They didn't come together properly. 
I take part blame as I do struggle with instructions, I need concise instructions and some diagrams would be lovely if you don't mind. So that pattern was looking like defeating me. Mum helped me work out my errors and now I have written all the finer points that I will need to provide guidance with my future blocks. (providing there are any!)
 these two are only a little bit out where the applique meets the basket, but at least I did get the right size block in the end. Machine piecing the basket got me a much more accurate size basket.
 I had to redo the red basket and it is 1/4" too small so if I can't fudge it I will have to redo the applique, eventually. I did another basket  just to make sure my measurements were correct and that I did understand how to put it together and it worked out well.
I am determined to master this quilt!! Maybe we need some counselling with our relationship?

to make me not feel totally inadequate I felll back to some comfort stitching. I know I can do that without issues.... I just struggle explaining it to someone else.  Elyte will attest to that.
 these are the fabrics I purchased from Jemima's the other day to go with the stitcheries. These will be a baby quilt for a friend I used to work with who is expecting a new grandbaby.



I just need to decide how they will go together. There are two and a half stitcheries to go so I have a little time... then it will be another whirlwind quilt.
It's been a wonderfully creative few weeks and I have enjoyed doing a bit of everything that I have on the go and especially starting some new things, even if they are testing me.

Nothing is Impossible, the word itself says 'I'm Possible'

Have a great weekend!
Marina



Wednesday, 1 October 2014

what a day

Yesterday I got to entertain the wonderful city girls at my home. We had a great time spent chatting, eating and laughing with a bit of retail therapy thrown in for good measure. What more could you ask for?
I got some tips for my needleturn applique and after confusing Elyte, I tried to help her with some stitching.
Funny how when you do something without thinking it can be so hard to show someone else how to do it.
I took the girls to Jemima's patchwork shop, a shop run from home in Craigieburn. Can you believe that none of them had ever been before.....Some silly person didn't check their Tuesday opening hours and when we arrived the shop wasn't officially open but Shirley and Veronica were very accomodating and the girls and I got to do some spending. It's a great shop and has a wide variety of fabrics, something for everyone really.
I did notice that there was a big assortment of batiks that had multiplied since my last visit. I have found a fondness for them since making my aussie flag quilt. 
I'm afraid I didn't take pics of our get together I was too busy making cups of tea, stitching and chatting. Elyte was official photographer of the day so hopefully she will post pics soon.
the girls all commented that our get together was a therapy session, how appropriate that they come to the asylum...
thanks girls for a wonderful day!

It hasn't been all laughing and cups of tea all the time here...
The signature quilt is complete!! I finished stitching the binding and sleeve down this morning.
Hooray!
not a bad effort - started on the 12/9/14 completed on the 1/10/14. I think this is almost a personal best. I think it will come close to my aussie flag quilt.
hand quilted with crochet cotton( to speed up the process a little bit.)

 the left overs pieced into the back,
 I was very happy with how neat the quilting turned out, not many zig zaggy stitches on the back either. Wish I could channel that  permanently.

My third sweet William applique got done too.
I am using scraps from my flowers where I can. These are favourite scraps from a quilt I made some time ago. I have held onto them for ages, nice for them to resurface. I have cut out the two baskets for block 2 and 3. Hopefully they will get done soon.

...But a new project has taken priority... I forgot that I had promised to make a baby quilt for a friend who is about to become a grandmother for the third time. 
I picked up some fabrics from Jemima's yesterday to go with the stitcheries I have selected.
Was going great guns with the first stitchery when I ran out of thread. Typical!
Off to get some this afternoon so it doesn't hold up proceedings.
Will show you my fabrics and hopefully a finished stitchery next post.
Happy days!
Marina