Mother and Child

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Mother of Mine

Today is 25 April 2010 - Anzac Day and 4 Years since I stopped smoking!  Do I feel better now?  Health-wise - there is great room for improvement; personal satisfaction - most certainly.  I just wish I could control my weight like I managed to stop smoking!!  Oh well, we cannot all be 100% perfect - but it does not mean that we cannot aim for that, yes?

Very proud of myself for a total different reason.  I finished my 'Mother of Mine' wall quilt for my Mum in South Africa.  Must get it off in the mail now but it may not reach her in time for Mothers' Day but Mum will not mind.

I know it is not 100% perfect BUT it is my first wall quilt AND I have learnt a lot of how NOT to do things.  Hopefully I can put that into practice as I continue with my quilting journey.  Do feel free to leave your critic - good or bad.

Mother of Mine Wall Quilt

Mamma Bear

Me Bear

Close-up of Mamma and Me

Now I can carry on with my log cabin quilt, get started on All Cooped Up BOM and look for material for Hens on Heels. 

I also only realised last night that I had put my name down for another BOM.  This one is titled The Three Friends of Winter and it is exclusive to The Sewing Sanctuary (The Sewing Sanctuary - no pics on the web page as at today yet) and consists of Japanese fabrics.  It was designed by Elizabeth Camping, winner of Best of Show 2008 SA Quilt Show and it depicts The Three Friends of Winter; bamboo, pine and plum who are faithful to each other during difficult times.

I think this is going to look absolutely gorgeous when done.  It will measure approx 44 x 34 inches

Yip, I think you can safely say that I am hooked!  I love the BOM system because it gives me enough time to complete a block and also ask for advice when I get stuck, before the next block arrives.  Now I just have to make sure I have enough walls one day for all these wall quilts!!

Have a great week!

Warm regards


Saturday, April 24, 2010

Lightbox duty


Had an odd day today - got plenty done and at least time did not fly!  And that was such a goooood feeling, you know what I mean?

Got up once MDH left for work this morning; pushed my dog off the bed (he gets let in in the morning and his treat is to snuggle up to his Mummy or The Dad, depending on who is up to let him in), and got going.

Washing was already going by the time I was fully awake and since I knew that we would have a visitor for the evening, I had to do the wifely thing and clean the visible dust and dirt.  I was striving to get all the homework down so that I can get started with the lightbox that I had borrowed from work (with permission!).  By eleven I had all the washing up for drying (and keeping an eye on the forecast rain), dusted, vacuumed, swept, put away dry washing and got the lightbox set up and plugged in.  I finished my BOM chook and then decided to do the hens as well.  There was one heck of a lot of tracing to do with this pattern!  Almost one metre of paper later, the hens were all done and here is the proof!  I felt so fulfilled and satisfied.  I wanted to do the other pattern I had but need about another meter of tracing paper (hopefully I can get some on Sunday morning).  Would like to get that done as well since I have the lightbox.

Will show you when I have the other pattern traced out as well!

Warm regards


Friday, April 23, 2010

Flippant Friday

Gosh, what a busy and rushed week it has been!

Work tempo was off the charts; tension was sky-high and the mood was blue.  Rabbits - must be because of the rabbits.  Why rabbits?  What have rabbits got to do with things? Nooooo idea, but I'm blaming rabbits - and sticking to my story.

Have been trying desperately to use the work's lightbox to trace my chooks in preparation for applique but ..... to my utter dismay ....... the lightbox remains stashed away under my desk.  No time.  Hopefully, with fingers X-ed, I may be able to do that when I finish off today and before I go home.  I do not really want to take the box home - just in case!  (I mean, I may become so attached to this useful quilting tool, I may not want to bring it back again LOL)

Got a number of very good and interesting books through the week and look forward to when I can start working on something described in them.  My dear friend, Saddle, is a great source of knowledge (and inspiration) and I will be knocking on her door for plenty of advice when I get around to doing it!  She is a great quilt artist and can do fabulous things with fabric - go check out her interesting collection : Sally's Stuff

I have now put myself on a strict QBD (quilt budget diet) as well.  Quilting can be very, very, very bad for the health of my budget - especially if I have not yet won the Lotto!  Until I have finished my current quilt, Mum's Mother of Mine wall quilt, my first BOM (All Cooped Up) - the chook in block called Hit the Hay (top left block) -

and at least one other pattern (yip, another lot of chooks [or chicks??]!!) - Hens on Heels

I am not allowed to buy anything new for myself!  Oh, No, woe is me!!

I am also keen on doing something with pumpkins (looooooooove beautiful round yellow-green-tan pumpkins) and have a number of ideas floating around BUT I must heed my budget diet restrictions!

I have also yet to start my Teddy wall quilt, the Goldfinch (same link as Hens on Heels), towards the end of May I have another BOM starting, and then there are two or three others on my 'To Do' list.  It is just that when you look through magazines and on the web, your eyes always catch something you are NOT supposed to see and ta-dah, you end up in my position!!!  Four months ago I had NO idea what a stash was and now I have run out of space with my two drawers (OK, they are not that large drawers anyway).

Excuse me, who got me hooked onto quilting?  SADDLE!!!!  MJ!!!!! 
BUT, I sure do love this hobby!

Going to try and do more autumn leaf applique this weekend (hopefully finish it) - that may lift the guilt feelings I currently have. 

Damn  Rabbits!!!

Warm regards


Monday, April 19, 2010

Weekend's Over

Woke up this morning and realised that the weekend was over, it was Monday morning, and I needed to get to work!  Gosh, a real shock to the system!

Had a great day of quilting with the HQ quilting group from work on Saturday.  Was absolutely lovely to see Saddle join us for the day too.  I believe that in times of stress and hardship, keeping busy with something you love and enjoy, really helps with reducing your stress and trauma.  A very special Lady this!

Sometimes I wonder when I am going to wake up and take note of what I am doing when I do something at quilting!  Here I was using a great light box to trace the pattern onto Visa-Fix, only to realise (once I cut all the pieces out!!) that it was not Visa-Fix but what you use for strengthening the fabric!  Hello, what is happening to my grey matter??? AAaagggghhh.  Will now being doing the tracing during the week.

Have to finish my wall quilt for my Mum this week so that I can post it early next week to reach her in South Africa in time for Mother's Day - will probably be late!

Am enjoying the machine applique of the autumn leaves.  The bamboo leave applique with the verigated green thread came out looking very nice, even if I have to say so myself.

Here are some pics of the fun we had on Saturday:

Quick lesson in silk screening

Assessing the layout from a height and distance.  Does it work?

Yip, it worked!

I somehow seemed to be doing a lot of running around on Sunday and it felt like I achieved very little when, in fact, lots happened.  Washing, cleaning, bit of shopping, late brunch at the rain check lounge in Elizabeth Street.  They do great eggs benedict and eggs florentine .... yum!  Oh, I also took my puppy for a long walk in the woods and was surprised at where we came out after our long travels!  Not that far from home down the road!  Then got stuck into unpacking my sewing machine and doing a spot of sewing.
Warm regards

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Wordless Wednesday


Warm regards

Monday, April 05, 2010

Autumn Leaf Machine Applique

Well, I gathered up enough nerves, got stuck in and have now made a start to doing the autumn leaf applique by machine.  Here are the first couple.  Looks OK-ish - I hope - (and hope it does not unraffle when it is washed!!)?  The outline of the leaf on the left in the top picture will be on the inside of the quilt top (obviously?) - the leaf is on the other side.

Back to more sewing!

Warm regards

The Assessment and The Result

Although I have slowly been making progress with my large quilt (with the emphasis on slowly), I was not too happy with this situation!  Why?  Well, it is like this ....

I am a bit of a control freak and perfectionist when I do things.  When I am not too sure of what needs to be done or how it is done, I often slow down with my progress and just read and read and read up on how it must be done, until I am satisfied that I understand.  Quilting most certainly falls into this category!  It is close to reading from a knitting or sewing pattern (when working from a pattern) but not everything is given to you - you are often left with putting your own preference into place.  My log cabin quilt is actually fairly easy to make BUT because I am swimming in deeper water (my first project on my own with very limited quilting knowledge), I often hesitate to just go with the flow!  It feels like I procrastinate and look for other things to keep myself busy with instead of just doing it - like now!  Blogging instead of sewing!

I like things to look right and when it does not feel right to me, I know it will not look right.  Does this make sense?  It is not that I underestimate my abilities because I know I can sew, I know I can follow a pattern, and I know I can do it, just .......

I know, one cannot learn without making mistakes - the problem is, I always advise my kids to learn from the mistakes from others and I am looking for those mistakes and how they then got it right.  Gosh, this sounds heavy involved - even I am getting confused now!

Best I go and switch on the sewing machine and start stitching - follow my ideas, so to speak - and then find out what my mistakes were.  They say that no quilt can be perfect!  Phew, thank goodness for that.

Back to sewing ....... at least I have all the leaves glued onto the fabric.  Now just for the machine applique.

I can do it ........

Warm regards

Sunday, April 04, 2010

The Autumn Leaf 'Foundation'

Have now marked the centres of each block onto which the autumn leaves have to be appliqued onto.  Found out, to my dismay, that my one marking pen had died on me and, luckily, I had, for some unknown reason at the time, purchased a white marking pencil which came to good use this morning!

Lying in bed last night, thinking of ways to save marking off the centre of each leaf, I came up with the idea of stacking each type and pulling a cotton thread through the stack, then pull off each leaf as I need it.  This way the leaves will not go missing and the needle hole will mark the centre!  I am looking forward to finishing these blocks - another step closer to putting the top together.

This is a quick view of what each block will look like upon completion (minus the free-motion sewing onto each leaf).

BUT, before I get going with this, I came across this beautiful view out my back door.  We live against a gentle slope of a hillside and our property backs onto pure naked bush, trees and, well, forest!  Since moving into our house, I have heard Kookaburra cries come from the forest - and seen some.  There was a nesting pair who had a baby and I watched over many days how they would fly up to feed this little one.  Too far for a decent photo at the time.  Baby has now grown and I am sure that this must he him visiting this morning.  These are my favourite birds.  See for yourself!

Warm regards

Saturday, April 03, 2010

Easter Saturday

Time waits for no man!  So, to prevent time becoming history that cannot be changed, I have worked hard to get things moving forward with my quilt, besides doing lots of other little things.

On Good Friday, I took my dog for a walk then for a wash at the Dog Wash (at one of the car wash places - great invention this bath!), did some washing of laundry (just the most important lots like undies, etc), did only one meal for us (my DH knows where the kitchen is and there is nothing wrong with his arms and hands!), ironed all the traced off leaves onto the material - then cut out each and every piece of material leaf, ready to iron onto the fabric square and start my applique.  Packed things away just after 1 am - satisfied!

Autumn Leaves

And this will be the centre panel of my new quilt

Got up early this morning, let my puppy in - he turns one year today!  Got back into bed for a short cuddle with him and DH (once I am up, I struggle to lie around in bed when there is so much to do and time moves on).  Eventually I could take it no longer and got up, had breakfast (alone as usual), cleaned the kitchen, re-organised the electric wiring behind the microwave (plug board keeps moving around), watered my indoor plants, banged in a nail to hang up a picture, fed the pets and quickly organised facebook and my blogs.

Now - hopefully, I can sneak off to my sewing room!

Blessed Easter for any Christian passing through!

Warm regards

Thursday, April 01, 2010


I cannot believe that it is Easter already!  Feels like only last week when we were celebrating the New Year!

With four days off, I think need to try and get some things on my 'To Do' list ticked off.  These are only some of the things I have lined up:

  • Paint the Study (going to be shades of green to match the blinds)
  • Level the grass area in the front.  This will involve planting stay poles, then putting knocking the sides onto these, line this with thick plastic and fill it with good soil.  Will see about this job!!
  • Finish the leaf applique and sew the side panels onto the centre block
  • Finish my 'Mother of Mine' wall quilt for my Mum
  • Catch up on ironing
  • Take Paxton for some decent walks
  • Scan some more magazines for the library of our quilting group
  • Try to relax
And I have how many days off I said?

Friday, 9 April, I will try my hand at golf (going with a group from work)!  I do not suppose having played hockey will count for anything towards my handicap?  No?  OK, thought not.

Blessed wishes for a peaceful Easter with loved ones, discovering the true meaning behind all the chocolate eggs, fluffy rabbits and other delectable treats!

Warm regards