Wednesday, January 2, 2019

Watch this space!

Plans are afoot to update this blog over the next few weeks.
My lifestyle has changed since 2012 and I no longer have the opportunity or motivation to stitch daily.  My craft focus has shifted to patchwork and quilting, and today have started another blog to be dedicated to my quilting journey.
I will have to add to my Heirloom Christmas Tablecloth blog too, that is the most hand-stitching I have done in 12 months...
Thank you for your patience - I hope to reconnect to you all soon.
Here is the latest finish - hot off the needle.   All details can be found here: 3 Days from Cutter Down to Needle Up.

Thursday, November 23, 2017

Hi all,
2017 Christmas Time has rolled around - for the first time in for such a long time, I have my Christmas Heirloom Tablecloth stitched and ready - and it's not even Christmas !!!!

I've created a page for this blog with ever-so-slightly out of focus pictures of each square from 2004 to 2016.  I can't stitch 2017 yet, until it's been and gone and I can pick a theme for the square.
So if you are interested click >here<  and follow the story so far.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Recent quilting projects

I used to be so obsessed with this blog, but over the past 4 years, life has changed around.  I cannot promise to get back into the swing of things, as I really want to spend time stitching instead of searching pinterest, facebook, blogger.   I want to stop reading about stitching and stitch instead.

I'm waiting for this quilt to come back from the quilter - I am stoked how it turned out.
Fairy Princess Quilt - using vintage tablecloth and all my pink fabrics in my stash

I'm also stoked how the minion quilt finished up.

back of quilt - found the perfect quilt panel
Tipsy Tumbler from MSQC - using minion fabric

I made a small 'quilt for dolly' from the extra patches

The parents were so happy too.

The Boss, his wife and bub

Sunday, March 20, 2016

My Quilty Pleasures...

Add caption
Road Trip late January - Son, Partner and his dog in a small Toyota Yaris for 400km

Quilty pleasures indeed...  In no particular order - over the past few weeks, I have become intimately acquainted with my new Janome sewing machine, and am please to announce that I have fallen insanely in love.

My cross stitch pieces are waiting forlornly to return, and, given time and daylight and good eyesight, I will. In the meantime, my sewing maching, rotary cutter and rulers have become quite good friends.   I particularly love the instantaneous result.  Cross stitching built up over weeks and weeks of work, and I often fell asleep after a dozen or so stitches.  With patchwork, I can complete a small project in a matter of hours, or prepare the fabric one day, and stitch it the next.

Since November 2015, I've made Tote Bags:
Teapot Covers, Coasters & Mug mats

Table Runners
Cot and Lap Quilts

Window Sashed Disappearing 9-patch
Jelly roll race quilt in shades of purple
Tipsy Tumbling Minion Cot quilt

My next project is a pink quilt for a little girl who is about to head into a 'big girl's bed' for the first time.  She's a real fairy princess and I've had to raid my stash to find pinks and purples. The fairies will be fussy cut and the pattern will be another sashed disappearing 9-patch

Monday, February 22, 2016

I've been away for so long..... !!! Can you forgive me??

HI friends,

Can you forgive me?  I've been away for 6 months...
I lost the impetus for the ornie challenge by the time December rocked on..and another stitchy friend took it over for 2016.  I hadn't even purchased the annual magazine..

I've done little cross stitch.  Patchwork and Quilting have taken over my spare time.  I've come to the realisation that my eyesight isn't so great any more.  I'll work on the charts that I can see when inspiration hits me, hoping to finish what I can.  In the meantime, quilting is so instantaneous and I'm loving my new machine.

I'll post pics as I find them, most of them are on my mobile and haven't been moved to the laptop for sharing.

In the meantime.. I found myself answering a question on a message board. I had been asked just where was Victoria, Australia, by someone in the USA.
my answer went something like this....

How to find Australia on a world map...   Ok  start with the US and head towards Japan...  then drop down below the equator.. That's right.. we're the Great Southern Land...   keep going..... If you get to the big white bit.. that's Antarctica and you've gone too far..  (a bit of this white land is officially Australia too...)  Move away from the cold and head back towards the equator... don't go too far..  smoodge a little bit to the left of New Zealand and you'll see this lump of orange...   That's Australia. 
Now the square bit on the top left... that's the NORTHERN TERRITORY... Capital City of NT is Darwin...  bombed by the Japs in WW2 (Feb 19 1944) and because of its isolation, very little was known about the attack for some days.  Christmas Day 1974, at dawn, Darwin was hit by Cyclone Tracy - once again.. isolated area, but all of Australia rallied around and helped out the survivors...  I was 11 then.. and I remember the pictures of kids looking for their Christmas presents.
The top right has a pointy bit...well that's tropical QUEENSLAND.. crocodiles and humidity and heat and stuff... Never been there...don't know that I will.  The capital there is Brisbane, but it's a bit further south... near NEW SOUTH WALES...  Once upon a time, the entire island continent was called NSW, because the Englishman who discovered the place, thought parts of it he could see reminded him of Southern Wales in the UK.  Sydney is the capital of that state.. famed for the Coathanger bridge and the Opera House (special because up until it was built, most Aussies spelt culture with a capital K)
Speaking of capitals.. the Capital of Australia (where all the politicians are) is Canberra - located away from the coast in it's own state, (or rather, Territory), is the ACT, or AUSTRALIAN CAPITAL TERRITORY.  This city was designed in circles and is pretty and nearly insignificant, if not for the War Memorial, the National Art Gallery and Parliament house...
Flinging yourself to the left from NSW (roughly because the state borders are wonky) on the west of the continent is....  WESTERN AUSTRALIA.   Gee these naming guys had little imagination.
Once again, I don't know much about WA - Perth is the capital city, and there is a big Yachting community (remember America's Cup??), and a river and black swans..  and a lot and a lot and a LOT of space filled with orange sand. A few mountains known as the Kimberleys run in the north of the state.
Pretty much dead centre of the land is a big red rock sticking up - used to be called Ayers Rock and you used to be able to climb it, but now it's a special place called Uluru and the cultural inhabitants and owners are more discerning about letting people clamber over such a significant indigenous feature.  Dropping down south from the Rock (which is in the Northern Territory), you find yourself in ....wait for it... SOUTH AUSTRALIA (see I told you they had no imagination)  SA is the land of wines and Culture and genteel way of life and antiques and the clocks are all set to 1960.   The hills surrounding the capital Adelaide, regularly catch on fire in summer.
We'll skip to the right and down a bit and find ourselves in our only island state, TASMANIA.  It often gets left off the map and the locals are really cranky about that.  It's famous for it's Heritage areas, lots of trees, apples, chocolate, and convict history.  It started as Van Diemens Land, but after the convicts were no longer transported, had a make over and renamed for the Sailor who mapped a lot of the coastline.. Tasman.  There's a nearly extinct mammal, called the Tasmanian Devil, which looks nothing like the critter on the vintage Bugs Bunny shows.
That leaves us heading back to he mainland, to VICTORIA, named after the British Monarch.  Melbourne is the capital city, the suburbs are spread around Port Philip Bay.  I live in an outer suburb on the bay.  Victoria is famous for the gold that was found in the 1850's onwards.  Melbourne known for it's culture, and coffee shops and laneway lifestyle, as well as being a centre for the Arts. It is also considered to be the Sporting capital of the world, (F1 racing, soccer, tennis, horse-racing, football, cricket, basketball)  Our festival in March is called Moomba and we have a public holiday to celebrate the granting of an 8 hour work day.  In November, our state has another public holiday to celebrate the running of one Horse Race.  We don't have snow in Winter, but our ski-fields are less than a 3 hour drive.

Australia is a big place.  From Melbourne, for perspective, it's a 6 hour drive to the west before you hit South Australia and a 5 hour drive 'till you hit NSW on the coast and a 5 hour drive to the northern border. Although you can drive from Melbourne to Sydney in one day (11 hours or so in traffic), you'd be better off taking a day or two to sightsee.

I hope you have enjoyed my little sojourn around this wondrous country.  Should you ever be fortunate to visit, I'd be honoured to show you around the bit of my world.

Monday, August 31, 2015

2015 JCS Ornie Competition update....

Not having posted since May, I thought you'd like to see what is happening, as I'm running this with a handful of TOL stitchers - people I've known online for over 10 years.
In no particular order - my march ornie before adding beads - still waiting to be finished into an ornament proper

 My April Ornament - once again waiting to be finished into an ornament proper....
 Elaine's March/April ornament - finished
 Marguerite's April Ornament - finished neatly
Sue P's April Ornament - a lot of work in this one.

Rather than leaving this post pic heavy... will post some more later.

Our September Challenge is for any Halloween Ornament. (ready for posting for any Halloween Ornie exchange)

Saturday, May 9, 2015

May stitching choices - JCS Ornament challenge

Drum roll...   I've collated all the votes, and asked Harry to cast his vote to determine the 2 runner ups as it was a 4 way tie for second place....

The most popular selection :

1: Tempting Tangles Designs - Christmas Stockings 2014
8: Wee Works - Star Tree Ornament
10:  New York Dreamer - Merry Christmas

Of course at some point I started stitching number 9...  but I'm sure I can rustle up another one... or two in my spare time....

Happy May Stitching ladies....

Saturday, April 25, 2015

JCS Ornament Challenge - Choices for May...

Hi friends - well it's the 25th of the Month, and ANZAC day here in Australia.  A solemn morning - dawn service and an afternoon of stitching.
Here is the next selection for voting...
The little strawberry (2) is cute & it's a simple enough pattern.   I like number 9 another simple design, number 8 is cute, but I don't have perforated paper here.  The wee stocking (6) is sweet - and would be a lovely exchange for another stitcher.  I like number 10, but feel that it would be too big to hang, but made into a free standing shelf display. Number 4 is intricate, but is it Christmassy enough? (I'm sure I've seen it in another year's designs.  Number 1 is again big enough to be a standing ornament and I would want to re do the lettering somewhat.  Number 3 is ok if you are into stitching houses... (not me), number 7 is a bit too fiddly sampler for my taste.  Number 5 could be nice all done in beads, don't like the finishing on this example....

Well it's all up to you.... what 2 ornaments do you like.   I'll collate all the votes and post the top 3 choices on May 5.

Harold Bacon - Served at Gallipoli WW1 - and his Great-Grandson John Bacon - soldier in today's Australian Army

Sunday, April 19, 2015

TUSAL - April 2015

For the life of me, I don't know what happened to my TUSAL March pic or post...   but here is my little jar looking somewhat more respectable than last year.   Those with eagle eyes will spot that there is no red or crimson floss amongst it all..  I feel guilty really for not stitching or participating in the 5000 poppy project that has been all over facebook and blogs.  I had every intention of participating, but somehow just never did.    I will honour the ANZACs in my own way.

I have been stitching diligently on my 2015 JCS Ornament challenge.   Never reading the instructions and totally using whatever floss strikes my fancy at the time.. this one will end up as a four sided ornament... I've done the hardanger and beads sections now,  just need to finish it.

A.N.Z.A.C. Day looms.  
My Great Grand-father served in the Boer War with the Kings Own Highland Guards.  
My father, born in 1930, was too young to serve in WW11, instead, he has honoured his mother's wish and has played the Last Post at every ANZAC and Remembrance Day service since 1939  -  that's 75 consecutive years !!!
My brother too was too young to serve in the Vietnam War (and for that I am secretly grateful)
My son John now serves in the Australian Army - I am tremendously proud of him.

Unintentional pic of my TUSAL, surrounded my by growing collection of long-necked cats....

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

JCS 2015 Ornament Challenge - April selection

JCS 2015 Ornament Challenge....
(drum roll please....)

This was the closest voting challenge

In order to find 3 clear choices... I had to ask a few people who had no idea about stitching....

2:  Faith by Nikyscreations
6:  Hark by Shepherd's Bush Printworks
7:  Star of Wonder by Julia Lucas Designs

Happy Stitching.....