Wednesday, March 31, 2010

I have the bestest quilting friend ever !!!!

It's nearing 11pm here...and I've just come from my friend Karen's house, no doubt she is still sitting at her machine quilting the Music Man wallhanging for me.!!!
I really need my sleep and she's offered to finish it for me in time to pick it up tomorrow after work.
(and she fed me dinner tonight too - yummo!)
My batting that I had brought was not quite right, so she's donated a piece of her own, and made the binding strips (because I forgot to last night!) and is finishing my top piece into the final work of art.

Good friends are hard to find.

I think I might keep this one!!!


Sunday, March 28, 2010

Music Man Wallhanging - nearly finished.... not look....turn off now!!!
not for your eyes at all...

has he gone??

Ta-DAH !!!!

Here is Harry holding up the top panel all finished....well very nearly. I'm going to hunt out some black aida (I know I have some) and stitch it across the top. Then I merely have to stitch the words - "The Music Man" , using a lot of gold and deep yellow DMC. I'll be stitching a small quilt label too, to dedicate the panel to dad for his 80th.

I'm feeling very, very smug and pleased with myself.

Music Man wallhanging - progress pics....part 3

And I've done enough for one evening.
Keeping in mind, these patches are 3" square, these are the smallest pieces I would consider stitching. I am in awe now of those who make mini-quilts.
I've got them now to this stage - and pressed the seams to the left and to the right, rather than open flat. The first square doesn't quite match on the points, but I'm not letting get to me.....
I'll continue on this tomorrow, in the daylight...

And isn't this the bestest fabric??? I have no idea just what I'll use it for, but I knew if I had left it at the shop, it wouldn't be there again when I went back to get it....

Question: When you trim your fabric and you are left with little scrappy small are they when you decide that they are of no possible use? I've found myself keeping pieces as small as 1" x 2" for 'just in case'.

arrrrgh it's an illness I tell you!!!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Music Man wallhanging - progress pics....part 2

It's mid-evening now...and I'm still plodding away.

Im showing a closer look at the fabrics for the side panels - and how I played with my graph book and pencils..
I'm feeling very clever - managed to make successful 1-1/2" half square patches - using 1-7/8" squares...I've been dying to use that technique..
Now I'm about to piece together the 8 blocks - I've laid them out 'just-so', in order that I don't mess up the sequence.
How do you think I'm going so far???

Music Man wallhanging - progress pics....

Dad - look away NOW !!!!
This is not yours to see until Easter Sunday!!!!

Today is P-day - the day I have finally admitted that I have fallen over into the dark side and am P-atchworking !!!!!!

Here is the centre panel for Dad's birthday wallhanging, the keyboard strip that I made and the fabrics I'm about to use to make sampler patches on either side.

I'll post progress pics - no rush...I have 8 days left to have this finished.....
back to the cutting board....wish me luck!

Friday, March 26, 2010

School Holidays are here......

....and for the benefit of the Victorian school Mums, I've added a count-down widget to my sidebar. Just a temporary measure, you understand...

I'm not saying my boys are bad, and that I abhor the holidays and are stressed out while they last.... I'm just an evil old biddy who likes to tease her sons.....

In fact, Harry's holidays have pretty much been planned out for him and he won't need to be supervised by his brother much at all.

To all the Mums - Happy Holidays!!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Keyboard Quilt border panel - help me - I've crossed over to the Dark Side!!!!!

I am feeling like I am such a clever clogs. Here is the beginning of a wall hanging I'm making for my Dad's 80th Birthday. I should have plenty of time to stitch it, because his birthday is April 26, but as we are having a family gathering on Easter narrows the time I have to play with it.
I found a panel that had 6 musical instruments featured. I've saved the saxaphone, guitar, drums, piano and french horn for another project in the future (as you do), and used the panel featuring the trumpet. I don't have much other fabric to match, but I did know that I wanted to make a piano keyboard border on the bottom. I purchased 30cm each of black & ivory cotton.
I googled and searched everywhere for hints how to stitch a keyboard, but couldn't find exactly what I wanted, so dragged out the graph paper.....
I did not want even spacing between the keys - if you look at a keyboard, the white keys are wider than the black. I did not want to use applique - I knew what I wanted...
I cut the black into 1.5" x 4" strips. Then the ivory strips...1.25" x 4" and 0.75" x 4". These were placed in a row, so that I knew which pair to pick up. I also cut out of the ivory 1.75" x 3" strips. These are the bottom section of the ivory keys.
It would be important for the seams to match - and using an idea that I had seen in books and on the web, cut a small rectangle of plastic from an ice-cream bucket lid and attached it to the base of my sewing machine with double-sided tape. This gave me a guide so that I would have constant - proper 1/4" seams on all. I feel this was one of the cleverest things I did all night!
I started pairing up black/ivory strips, chain stitching. No pins needed, because 4" is finger friendly!
Then I pressed it - all white seams towards the black and all the pairs of white keys seams pressed open flat. I also stitched all the 3" strips together, making a long strip 3" wide.
Then I resorted to pinning the seams - here it was important they all matched.......and they did. So I stitched the key strip to the ivory strip..... and suddenly... here is is.......
Makes you almost feel like playing it - doesn't it????
More pictures as I progress on this one

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Giveaway and Stitchy Sunday

Found a great giveaway here at Sprinkles' blog. I only just started following yesterday, and there is some great reading - sounds like a great shop to visit.
You know, one day I'll get to travel the world, and all I'll see will be the inside of Stitchy shops!!!!

This afternoon, I'm hosting a Stitchy meet & greet (or stitch 'n' bitch as I tend to really refer to it).
I don't know how many are planning to attend. It may only end up being 2 or 3 of us, but you can be sure that we will have lots of fun chatting and stitching away. I'll take photos and share later.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

a Tardy T.U.S.A.L and musings of mice and musios

It's almost a week late, but here is my contribution to March T.U.S.A.L.
In here are orts from the B Sampler and the LK snowman. There are also threads from 'Inspiration', my current WIP. At the back you can see my goldfish bowl, which I use to hold bits and bobs - most importantly, all the bobbins I've recently used because I've been too lazy to spend the time to put them back in my boxes. Every so often I have a fit of cleanout and sort the bobbins back into their correct order. Also at the back is a FireKing jadeite D-Mug. I've a small collection of FK jadeite - perhaps growing at the rate of one piece per year. I've a set of 4 of these mugs, 8 chilli bowls and a Jane Ray creamer, and sugars and cup/saucer.

Of mice.... it appears that more than one mouse has made itself comfortable. Night before last, I was awoken by the cat and his acrobatics at 2:30. I was presented by one dead mouse. (thank goodness, because I just was NOT up to chasing a live one around at that time of morning!!!!) This afternoon, there was a commotion in John's room. The cat had yet another mouse. Harry was very brave and removed dead mouse to the garbage. I'm placing mousetraps in John's room tonight!!!!
so far the tally is...... mousetrap : 1 cat : 2
If if find more mice in John's room, then he is so going to spit it when I tell him that he'll be moving EVERY STICK OF FURNITURE an
d EVERY ITEM OF CLOTHING from his room until I find the nest of mice!!! Perhaps if I tell him that mice eat guitar strings it might become more important to him! ugh!

I also recently changed the blog lists on either side of my blog - thought I'd try to list them alphabetically. Doesn't work for me I'm afraid - it's going to take awhile, but I'm going to try to re-sort the blog lists into Stitchy/Patchwork/Thrifting/Frood & other. What category are YOU in????
I've got near to 200 blogs now on my reading list - It might take a while to read each one and re-organise you all. You all have such interesting tid-bits of information to share! Thank you.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Another Snowman finished - what next????

I've finished Cold Hands Warm Heart (Lizzie Kate). I changed a few colours around - as you do and found a simple button to use as the bobble for the hat. I'm going to finish this one into yet another cushion. If I can drag myself away from the computer, I might just work my way through a couple of WIP's next - I am trying not to start something new. Although Inspirations is calling me, I've recently aquired a Victoria's Sampler Xmas Tree Farm sampler...hmmmmm...there IS a snowman in the bottom corner. I'm also feeling like cutting up some fabric and making use of some of the patterns found in my oodles of patchwork magazines I'd recently aquired.... hmmmm so much stash - so little time!
Sneak peek at my chookies - sent off to the US for a chook block swap. No further pics until my blocks return!

Friday, March 12, 2010

Who wants to play at my place??? Stitchy Sundays

I've been thinking about this for awhile, unless I say something, another year will zoom past without a stitching day with my friends.
I'm having two stitchy sundays open house - March 21 and April 18. 2pm onwards.
For those in the Melbourne, Victoria area - if you want details - please leave a message on this post with your email details and I'll contact you with my Pakenham address.
Bring patchwork, applique, cross-stitching, knitting, crochet, tatting or any other needlearts for a show and tell. Such a wealth of knowlege is available and it will be fun!
Bring a small gift for lucky-dip exchange
I'll provide the nibbles and plenty of magazines for perusal.
I'd love to meet my bloggy friends face to face!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A sampler of BBBBBBBBBB's - finished!!!!

Hot off the needle - finished and taken outside for a snap before the thunderstorm hit....
Sampler of Bees - by the City Stitcher. the fabric is more a minty green, but the photo is fairly close.
I changed the charted verse from "Could we live without the bee - To fill each hive with sweet honey?" Sorry designer, that just isn't ME Can you read the verse I changed it to? "Bees that buzz near flower and stem - Making honey - I like them."
Now to move onto another snowman......

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Of Roos, WIP, Full-moon Snowman S.E.X., 50c bags and more....

To start is my current WIP of 'Cold Hands-Warm Heart'. I'm stitching with whatever jumps to hand, following the general colour recommendations. I think the blue in the mitten is a Dinky-Dye. The red in the beanie is one of the new DMC variations. I've used DMC silver metallic as well. It's on a hand-dyed 14ct aida. I can see this to stitch upon at night. It's been on hold for a few days while working on a Patch swap - I can't show photos of that yet, until the patch comes back...
As of this morning, here is where I'm up to on the B Sampler. I've done everything except for the bees and the final verse. I've changed the original verse to something that suits ME far better. It doesn't show well, but the fabric is far more a minty green. I hope to have this finished this weekend.
This morning, being a weekend, meant that I could take my camera and see the critters that make odd noises during my weekdday pre-dawn ramblings. It's a bit far away, but you can see one of the local 'roos in the next paddock. I saw 10 this morning, and a kookaburra sitting on a wire.
I was lucky to win a prize on the 123 message board last month, with tales of my idiotic full-moon behaviour. I was asked what was my preference in charts - and I replied 'Snowmen' and samplers.....well here is what arrived in time for the very next full moon! Lots and Lots and Lots of SNOWMEN!!! (Harry actually approves of one sampler - the Victoria Samplers Winter Sampler!!!) There is also quite a few DMC threads to play with...I just don't know what to start first....
This morning, while sourcing some fabric at a patchwork shop, I found a thrift shop asking 50c to fill a bag with shirts....I only picked 4 shirts, the one on the bottom right in particular leapt out at me. I'm not planning on wearing them, but converting them all into patchwork fabric. All 4 are cotton fabric (I checked the labels) and the other three are stripes and checks....I'm sure they will come in useful someday...
It's a disease, I tell you!!!

And following my last post....the mouse appears to have taken up residence in the bottom of the pantry or behind the fridge. ......... it's days are numbered!!!!