Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Friday felty fun

My husband arrived back home on Friday afternoon after a road trip to attend his uncle's funeral in NSW.  I knew  we'd have lots to talk about so this little project was just the thing for FNSI. Cut with my favourite  Baby Go die, it's the fourth such brooch I've made recently.  Felt is lovely to work with and I have a collection of gorgeous colours so I'm sure there will be more.

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Friday night with friends etc

I signed up for FNFW but in between making and eating vege soup, beer bread and Karen Martini's lucious lemon and poppyseed cake and watching a movie all I ended up doing was cutting some hexies for the drawstring bag I'm planning to make. The pattern is Judy's Dilly Bag, designed by Judy Newman from a very fine house. It's hand pieced - hmmm, not sure about that - and will use up lots of  the accumulated bits and pieces of fabric that I can't bear to throw away. This will be a long-term project so don't hold your breath.

Friday was a cold, snowy, indoorsy sort of day; this is only the second time I've seen snow in Ballarat in the 10 years we've lived here and it was beautiful to watch. Yesterday and today began with a bumper frost (-2 this morning)  that brought clear blue skies.

Yesterday afternoon we headed up to Daylesford for a concert featuring the Melbourne Scottish Fiddle Orchestra and two travelling musicians from Scotland, Chris Stout (fiddle) and Catriona McKay (harp). We'd last seen Chris and Catriona featuring in a fabulous group from the Shetland Islands, Fiddlers Bid, when they played at the inaugural 10 Days on the Island Festival in Tasmania years ago, so we knew it would be a great concert - and it was. And at the end of the concert, the musicians left the stage, still playing their instruments as they left the hall,  farewelling the audience in such an unexpected, happy way.

Friday, August 1, 2014

CIJ swap and other stuff

So - the Christmas in July swap has been and gone and I am just wondering if the rest of the year will gallop along at the same pace as the first seven months. I'm not sure if it's just that I'm getting older but it seems that some years vanish faster than others.

Anyway, it was a fun swap and I want to show what I made for Sue in Dunedin. With overseas swaps (and yes, NZ DOES count as overseas!) I like to add a bit of Aussie-ness. The cushion cover I made has more than a hint of this - it was designed by Anorina at Samelia's Mum in NSW and the border fabric just screams Australia (or maybe that was the noisy cockies).  I used the same fun fabric to cover the front of a card and fussy cut a little piece as a "stamp" envelope. The other Aussie components were the pattern for the clutch purse (from the book Meet Me at Mike's by Pip Lincolne in Melbourne), a Santa button by Barb Smith (Theodora Cleave - I love the quirkiness of her button designs) and a little pattern by Lynette Anderson.

All the fabrics used were from my stash (gotta love that) and were purchased locally or from quilt shows in Melbourne. I love the reindeer fabric on the flap of the clutch purse and the lining fabric, which also featured reindeer,  was a lucky find at the bottom of one of my fabric tubs.  Aneela Hoey's
quirky fabric was just begging to be made into a Christmas stocking.

And now it's the end of the month and OPAM is upon us once again. Our weather has been dreadful for most of this week - so cold and wet - and yesterday's crafting efforts consisted of felty fun. So now I have a little scissor ornament (designed by Marg Low, who is one of my favourite designers, from a kit purchased from her at the recent quilt show in Melbourne) for myself  and a brightly coloured flower brooch for my young niece.And I've signed up for Friday Night With Friends  tonight so must be off and sort out a hand stitching project.

PS: I've just looked out of the window and it's SNOWING - hooray!

PS2: I was the lucky winner of this adorable pincushion made by clever Susan who makes gorgeous things; her blog, Thimblestitch, is lovely to read and having been lucky enough to meet her last year I know she is lovely too! Needless to say, no pins will ever be stuck into this little beauty. Sorry to have been so remiss in posting about this, Susan, you know I love it.

Friday, July 25, 2014

Christmas in July

Today all of us who signed up for Cheryll's Christmas in July swap were officially allowed to open the parcels that we have been trying not to open since they arrived (oh how tempting!)

When the postie delivered my big parcel,  I was chuffed to bits to discover that Peg was my partner. Peg and I have been partners in other swaps so I know of old how lovely her work is.

Just look at this
which turned into these.

There's a big table runner, a cute little gift bag, a wall hanging, the cutest mug rug and a teatowel decorated with Christmas fabric.  Peg also sent a mug full of coffee sticks , gorgeous chocolates and a notebook. Thank you so much, Peg, I couldn't have wished for a more generous partner. And thanks to Cheryll for another fun swap.

A parcel from me made its way across the ditch to Sue in Dunedin.  I was so pleased to have a partner in NZ - despite my 40+ years in Australia I am still a Kiwi at heart. I won't show what I sent to Sue until she blogs about the swap but I know she has opened and likes her gifts - she sent me a lovely email this morning.

Happy Friday, lovely people!

Monday, June 2, 2014

The party's over...

I didn't get to Chooky's party after all - I was sick on Saturday so couldn't attend my FMQ class and just hung around the house feeling sorry for myself.  I really wanted to join the celebrations because the Chookshed and I almost share a birthday (well, our birthdays are around the same date, just  60 years apart .... )

Not a stitch was stitched on Sunday either because I was feeling better but mojo-less so kept busy with other things.

But today, although the party's over, was a happy, productive day. I made an oat and quince jam slice (yummy, I taste-tested, well you have to, don't you?) and an apple and cinnamon loaf which also looks good. Oh, and there was a bit of crafty stuff - I finished this Christmas tree cushion cover for Cheryll's Christmas in July swap (love the scrappy look and those cheeky cockatoos) and found some pretty blue fabric to wrap around a little embroidery hoop to frame this  little stitchery. It's a Lynette Anderson design; so sweet.

I've been checking out a few blogs to see what the party-goers got up too - looks like lots of fun was had as well as lots of lovely things made.

Friday, May 30, 2014

Party, party

I'm not much of a party girl - but I'm very happy to be one of the  guests at  Chookyblue's celebrations  this weekend to mark the second year of her sewing space, the Chookshed. There will be lots of us joining in from all over Australia and from many other countries too, so it might get a bit crowded (and a bit noisy!) If you'd like to take part , whether on your own or with friends, just go and visit Chooky's blog and sign up. You'll be in great company!

My project for tomorrow will be  a smallish linen sampler quilt using nine different FMQ patterns in marked areas. It's a class, and I'm not confident with the stitching so I'm going to practise more this afternoon in an effort to not embarrass myself too much. It's something I'd like to be at least competent at - fingers crossed. And on Sunday I'll be going to a handmade market then choosing something from my UFO collection to work on.

So - will I see you stitching in cyberspace?

Saturday, May 17, 2014

Friday night stitching

I signed up for Friday Night Stitch-In  for the first time for the first time and as I buttonhole stitched, watched some telly, enjoyed a cuppa and chatted to my husband it was lovely to think of others doing much the same. Many of us will never meet but all of us are linked by our love of creating.

This is the project I'm working on - it's a cushion design by Anorina of Samelia's Mum. (Oops, knew I should have ironed it before taking the pic!)  I always mean to start crafting for Christmas around this time of year but this is the first year it has actually happened!

What did you all get up to? Thanks to Wendy for running the show and making things happen.