Saturday, December 19, 2009

I am feeling very proud of myself with 7 days to go before Christmas Day and I seeing as I am working up to the 23rd December I thought I should get the tables set for Christmas lunch today and avoid the last minute rush on the big day.

For those who have been reading my earlier posts you can see the end result of the BOM placemats.

I most probably won't get time to do another update on my blog before Christmas so I will wish everyone a very happy and safe Christmas and best wishes for 2010.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

I have been "playing" alongside the ladies of the Craft forum and making the mystery block of the month. I decided to use Christmas fabrics and make some new placemats for Christmas Day and this is the result.

I had to call for help on doing the binding and again the lovely ladies of the forum came to my rescue. It makes a difference when you are given the right advice and I am happy the way they turned out.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

If you want to know how to waste 2 hours on a Saturday morning just look below.

The annual ritual of putting up the Christmas tree always seems to involve the lights that were taken down last year and put away oh so carefully somehow becoming a tangled mess. One of lifes mysteries - up there with lost socks, keys and faxes!!

Anyway this job of putting the lights on the Christmas tree always falls to the male of the house (and the putting away of them - may account for the tangles!!!!) and after much sweat, a few expletives during a 2 hour period and getting into an even bigger mess - which now lives in the garbage bin - we are now the proud owners of 150coloured flashing lights.

Stay tuned for next year's Christmas tree light report!!!!!
Santa came early to my house as you can see by the photo below.

I just mentioned to dh a couple of weeks ago that my current sewing machine is not performing as well as it should be and I will just start having a "look see" what is around. I do not need to buy one just yet but will have a look to see what is available and how much they are.

Whilst driving between A and B we happened to pass the local sewing centre and I asked dh to stop the car while I just had a quick look. It must have been my lucky day as Janome were having a Christmas special apparently usually $1,200 down to $599 complete with sewing table, walking and 1/4" foot and $20 cashback.

Well want could I do but order one. The whole process took 10 minutes from walking in the door, having a demo and departing with my deposit.

Well I have had a steep learning curve over the last week. Everything is completely different from my old Elna but I love it even though I am still reaching around the back to lift the lever and going to the side to reverse. Old habits die hard!!

Must go and have a play with my new toy.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

I am not long home from a lovely day meeting up with two ladies from the Craft forum of which I have been a member of for the last few years.

Ronnie has been travelling around in her caravan with her "girls" - two lovely poodles. She left Victoria several months ago and hopes to be back home just before Christmas and has been calling in to catch up with as many of the forum members as her travels have permitted and today was one the days she was in Sydney.

Jo the other member of the forum kindly offered Ronnie a bed at her house for the last two nights and we all meet up in the City today.

As you can see by the photo below we found our way into the Botanical gardens for morning tea.

On our way back to the Rocks we wandered through the Gardens via Government House where a kind person offered to take a photo of the 3 of us together. Little did he know that he would have 3 cameras thrust at him! Poor man he did not complain.

Jo on the left, me in the middle and Ronnie on the right.

Ronnie leaves Sydney tomorrow on her way South to meet up Gail and hopefully other members of the forum.

Safe travelling Ronnie and enjoy the rest of your journey.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

I found my way to the Spotty sale last week and feel in love with the fabrics above. I especially love the can can dancers but then again the domestic goddess print is cute as well. They were all marked down and with 20% off on top of that what could a girl do - make a choice - I do not think so!!!

I was told there is another co-ordinating fabric that goes with the can can dancers so I will keep a look out for it.

I also grabbed machine needles, threads and a new blade for my rotary cutter and having a gift voucher to spend I was in 7th heaven even though it took 50 minutes to be served!

I finished off the "sea theme" quilt today and quite pleased with the result. I hope the quilt police do not look too closely at it as I machined the binding down instead of hand sewing. Naughty naughty!!!

Next project to finish off is my Christmas placemats. So far I have 6 blocks finished and I am aiming to have them quilted and bound by the middle of next month. I need a total of 9 altogether - I should have them all finished by Christmas. I also have a cushion cover to make but I will use the fabric as the feature so that will go together quickly.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

There I was getting ready for work on Friday morning and happened to look out the bedroom window and the two below were happily making their way around the back of the house. I saw them wandering around the park the day before however they obviously needed to explore further afield. After a couple of pecks in the garden they about turned and marched off again. They must reside in the wetlands across the road.

Yesterday was back to winter again, cold wet and miserable so what better than to catch up on the September BOM which I had fallen behind with. I had run out of the green fabric that I was using but found a similar fabric which is a close match.

Now onto the October BOM. I will need to do a little adjusting on this one as I am using 3 colours as my theme.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I have been at it again - making another bag. A friend saw my tote bag and asked if I could make one for her with the "specs" of blue and green and pretty fabric. Here is the end result. She loved it and I was pleased - so we were both happy.

I just love this mug that I was given as part of my birthday present from DS and DIL. Most appropriate as I sit and knit squares for Wrap with Love and sip my coffee. It even works well when I am sewing and sipping!

Monday, October 5, 2009

DH and I have just returned from a weekend away at Blackheath with 15 others. We all knew each other over 30 years ago and for some over 40 years ago. Everyone enjoyed themselves and the weather - well what can I say - it was typical winter weather. Funny thing this weekend was chosen as we thought the weather would be "spring like". Anyway what can you do and really it did not stop us doing a great deal. Everyone had waterproof coats and brollies. So off we set. A couple of the photos below show just how foggy it was.

I hope this cable knows where it is going!!!

Getting closer to the valley floor.

At the other end of that cable is a boardwalk which passes by the old Katoomba coal mine. Real rainforest vegetation and the rain to go with it. However vision was good at this level.

This lovely old tree was in the grounds of the resort where we stayed and the second photo is taken from the dining room of the birdlife being fed at breakfast time.

One of the guys insisted that we go and see the view from his favourite lookout

By this time the wind was whipping the rain up and blowing it everywhere however it did not stop him and his partner from undertaking one of the mountain walks around the cliff edge with a duration of approx 1 hour. They may never been seen again!!

The rest of us piled into our cars and headed off to Leura for some retail therapy and a meal to finish off the day with.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

The photos above were taken at 6 am on Wednesday morning as Sydneysiders woke up to the worst duststorm in 70 years with the highest recording of pollution ever. The sky was a horrible orangy-red colour with fine grit getting into everything, stinging eyes and causing everyone to choke and splutter. The air has now cleared but everything is coated in red grit.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

I have taken the last week off work and had just the best weather and time and I still have 1 more day to go before returning on Tuesday. We are planning a day at Manly tomorrow then followed by a trip to "Spotty" - DS and DIL gave me a gift voucher for my birthday and with the $10 voucher I received from Spotty last week I will have a spend up.

Talking of Spotty brings me to thinking about sewing which in turn reminds me of flying geese. I just had to take this photo the other day when we were at Bobbin Head. Isn't this the best flying geese you have ever seen!!! I know - a toilet but this must be the best one around.

Once we had attended to the coffee and call of nature DH and I set off on a boardwalk along the waters edge which would have ended up at Wahroongah 2 hours later. Not feeling that energetic we enjoyed the sights on offer and managed to see some of the wildlife as we took our time and "drank" in the peace and quiet.

This cute rock wallaby allowed me to get quite close to him whilst he was having his lunch.

On our way home we turned into McCarrs Creek Road and ended up at West Head. After driving through what seemed endless scrub the view is something else. If you look closely you can see a rather large "lizard" sunning himself on a rock. What a view he has every morning.

Well the champagne cork popped the other night as I finished my oriental quilt. I had given myself a challenge to finish it sometime in September and I did. It is very hard to photograph on the bed so I borrowed 2 tall people today and had them hold it up. The photo does not do justice to the colours but you can at least see the pattern and effect in the photo below.

The next photo is on the bed and the one underneath is of the backing fabric which I feels goes in well with the oriental theme.

Today was the first morning DH and I started back our morning regime at the beach. Now that the mornings are getting brighter and warmer it is not too difficult to get out of bed at 5.30am. It is the best time of the day for the beach before the seabreeze gets up and too many people around. It is a lovely way to start the day. I was very brave and put my toe in and DH was completely mad and took the plunge! It needs to warm up a whole lot more before I venture in.

My next quilt is well underway with another one on the drawing board. More on those later.

Monday, August 24, 2009

DH and Iwere in Berrima last Sunday and saw these lovely blossoms trees while meandering around the lovely quaint shopping village - via the patchwork shop of course!

It really does feel like Spring has Sprung with the smell of jasmine in the air, the azaleas just about to break into flower, the air warming up and shedding some of the layers of winter clothing!

The following is a photo of the current BOM and in keeping with my theme of using 3Christmas fabrics I am pleased with the result. I am looking forward to the annoucement of next month's block. Before too much time gets away I am going to start putting each placemat together as I do not want to have a great rush the week before Christmas trying to finish them off.

I found this fabric a while ago which should be perfect for the backing of the sea theme quilt- also come to a standstill like the oriental quilt. Maybe next weekend I will find some time to sew.

I did however find time over the weekend to pre-wash the next lot of fabric for a quilt using muted autumn tones. It is done with 5" blocks and has 9 white blocks with the block adjoining each of the four sides of the white block forming a star. It looks very effective in the photo I have of it.

I am looking forward to finishing off the other two before I start on this one. Then of course there are the Christmas placemats somewhere in that mix and during the week one the lovely ladies from the Craft forum very kindly sent me a pattern to make the cutest mice and I can see them looking good in the scraps left over from the placemats.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

DS celebrated his 30th birthday yesterday with a party themed on "come dressed as someone you wanted to be when you grew up"

DH always wanted to be a teacher, and did, hence his outfit in the photo below and I went dressed as "I wanna be teachers pet". As you can see I am standing on my tiptoes to give "teach" a peck on the cheek and then give him an apple.

Some of the other outfits were quite amazing and fun - a transformer complete with laser gun, wrestler, Audrey Hepburn with her breakfast at Tiffanys outfit, horseriders, mad scientist, gymnasist, magician, airline pilot (birthday boy) and doctor to name but a few. A fun night was had by all.

After seeing that photo I have made a mental note to myself not to ever wear a gathered skirt again. Not very flattering around the hip area.

Sadly I have to say that not much progress was made on the sewing front again this weekend. I only managed to sew the backing together for my oriental quilt. I did put a deadline of September for completion and hopefully I will still be on track - well maybe if I extend it out to the end of September!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

The weather over the weekend was very conducive to sewing. Whilst it was lovely and sunny yesterday the air was cool and today was just one of those grey, cold, bleak winter days - what better than to lock myself in my sewing room and sew after hubby and I treated ourselves to breakfast at Manly then did a bit of retail therapy on the way home.

I managed to get the top sewn together on the "sea theme quilt". These fabrics remind me of seashells and sand, ripples in the water, white caped waves and clumping seaweed with the border bringing all those themes & colours together.

I also finished off my third mystery BOM and looking forward to the next one. I found this one went together much easier than the last one.

I am tossing around some ideas for another quilt. I have a few fabrics that go together well however I am off to Aussie Patches and the Craft Depot on Saturday and will take those fabrics with me just in case I see something else.

More on that as time goes by.

My son is having his 30th birthday party in a couple of weeks time and the theme is dress up as someone you wanted to be when you grew up. Well what I wanted to be was to work in an office, which is what I do, however that is very boring when it comes to fancy dress. I also found the time to whip up my "costume" today. Cannot say too much on that as my dil sometimes pops in here. All will be revealed after the party.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

I cannot believe that it has been soooooooooo long since I updated my blog! What have I been doing.

I have managed to sew all the blocks together for my oriental quilt and sewn the boarder on. All I have left to do now is the backing (which is cut) and waiting to be ironed, sewn together and then the mammoth job of pinning all three layers together, the quilting and the binding. Here is a photo of my progress. I am a little disappointed in the colours as it was a very sunny day when I took photo.

I have also finished making my second mystery BOM - which caused me some grief - however I am pleased with the end result. I have cut out the third BOM but it is still waiting to be put together. Maybe this weekend.

I also have another quilt on the go at the moment using the colours of the sea - shades of blues and greens. If it turns out as I expect this maybe my first Christmas present. Time will tell or perhaps will make a nice comfy bed for the cat if it does not turn out as I expect. It is cut out and waiting to be sewn up. I hope to make a start this weekend. I need a long weekend by the sound of all I have lined up!

Sunday, June 7, 2009

I have taken this week off work for a break. I cannot believe that I have been at this job for 12 months! Where has the year gone? We have covered quite a variety of areas during the week including the Southern Highlands which is a favourite area of ours and only 2 hours from our front door.

This is a lovely old pub and a great spot for lunch - it is very conveniently located right across the road from one of the prettiest patchwork shops around. A good place to spend sometime especially when it is cold and drizzly outside as it was when we were there. Typical Southern Highland winter weather.

We also became "tourists" in our own city and caught the rivercat to Abbotsford for lunch at the Sydney Rowing Club. A must to put on the "to do list" again.

Some much photographed icons of Sydney but I never tire of looking at them.

We then set off the the Blue Mountains rugged up with coats, scarves and gloves. A must especially up towards Blackheath where there always seems to be a cold wind blowing. The air is definitely much clearer and crisper than in Sydney especially along the coast where we have very high humidity for most of the year. This photo is taken looking across one of the many valleys that make up the Blue Mountains.

I also had to do some stash building whilst popping in and out of all these delightful patchwork shops found in country areas. The bottom row of fabric is for my next quilt that I am planning with a sea theme. I love these blues and greens and with the white they should make a good contrast. I managed to also find some backing fabric (not pictured) which will fit in nicely with the other fabrics.

The top row of fabric is because I liked them - especially the end one with blue sheep. What better thing than to have sheep on a quilt!

I have also found time to work on the oriental quilt and pleased with the progess. I now have all the rows stitched together with the next step being to cut and stitch the borders. I hope to get this done tomorrow.

I have set myself a challenge to have this quilt completed before September which is when I take another week off work. I will keep you posted on my progress. I also have to do my second block for the mystery BOM which I am working alongside other craft forum members.

Sunday, May 10, 2009

I am feeling very spoilt indeed - as you can see below I was given a gorgeous bundle of fat quarters from my ds and dil for Mothers Day and the card just fits in with the theme. I think I will just have to savour them for a bit before cutting into them.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Last Sunday morning I spent an enjoyable couple of hours at the Eastwood Patchwork Quilters exhibition held at Brush Farm House Ryde. As you can see from the photo below this lovely old house certainly lends itself to a quilt exhibition. There were over 100 quilts to look at and be inspired by.

The ladies on the craft forum are doing a mystery BOM and have been paired up to swap blocks for a period of 9 or 12 months depending on the size of the quilt they chose to go with. I decided to just "plod" along at my own pace and join in each month challenging myself. For my theme and fabric I decided that I needed new Christmas placemats hence the choice of Christmas fabric seen below.

This month's block is the pinwheel. Below is a photo of my block which I worked on today. I am looking forward to the announcement of next month's block.

I think I need another 24 hours in each day just to get through my reading pile that is piling up in the spare bedroom. I am currently reading "Dear Fatty" by Dawn French and I think that my next book will have to be James Herriott but then again? Underneath that pile of books lurks a pile of quilting magazines that are just waiting to be studied for inspiration!

I hope all mothers enjoy their special day tomorrow.