Wednesday, August 27, 2014

WIP Wednesday: the one before the one with the house


Not too much getting done this week. Mostly packing my fabric away:

So much fabric, so little time!

A project for See You In September:

See you in September

And sewing together a bunch of Cotton+Steel scraps for...something. I don't yet know what.

Thrift? Or obsession? #cottonandsteel

The birthday swaps are still coming in - I think I have one, maybe two left to arrive. But they've all been very useful and lovely, and most have been beautifully and carefully made! Such a talented lot of sewists!

#ahbcparty3 from @chambsvacc: shoulder bag, unfinished block (for use in one of my own projects), and adorable dog card! Thank you so much!

From @peaches1003 (getting it right this time - I hope!): pouch, sewing (make up?) roll, lanyard, and cutest card ever! #ahbcparty3 #aussiehandmadebirthdayclub

Trivets and ribbons and charm squares, oh my! (Thank you @peaches1003!) #ahbcparty3

Birthday swap from liannedgong

With every present is coming a handful of fabric scraps. I'm thinking that I'll patch them all together into a single piece, and use them in a bag - probably nothing more than a basic tote - but it can be the "birthday scrap bag" - made from the scraps that my birthday swap girls gifted to me!

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We take possession of our house next Monday, and pretty much the first thing I plan to do is to go over and take photos. Possibly with quilts. So excited! Or terrified. Possibly both?

So what have you been working on this week? I'm linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Monday, August 25, 2014

To Do list for September

With house things just about to start, I need to work out what really needs to be done and what's just make-work.

My sewing space needs to be packed up first, largely because we'll have to dismantle it to get everything else in the rest of the living space out. So this week is packing, packing, packing. Helpfully, my mother has let me know that I can store some destash fabric over at her house for a while, until I work out how to get rid of it. There's quite a lot of destash fabric, still - largely because I'm realising there's all this stuff that I will never use in my regular projects.

I'm presently looking into whether there's an organisation in Australia like Siblings Together, for which I can make quilt tops (since I don't want to do the entire quilt). Anyone know of one?

So my aim in September is to pack up my sewing room, finish the projects that are due during September, and any WIPs where there is time/space to get them done.

To Be Completed
1. See You In September bloghop project.
2. Make Modern Magazine mystery quilt
3. Build Me Up Buttercup (borders)
4. USA Hurray (borders)
5. All Around The World (borders)
6. King Of Bling (#redletteraustralia borders)

To Be Left Out For Doing Slowly
1. Millefiori Madness

Everything else can be packed up and go into storage for doing later. It has to; I don't have the time to manage it all. As it is, I should probably decide which sections of Millefiori Madness I'll be doing and just cut and bag those sections (along with a diagram of what's needed for that section) so it's all a whole lot neater.

Having to organise all the things I have is going to be a big headache: I have everything from 'bag notions' to 'dressmaking notions' to 'planned projects' to general stash. And it needs to be sorted before the move because I won't have space to do it afterwards!

*sigh* So tired.


Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

WIP Wednesday: the one with happymail!


So after a couple of weeks where I couldn't seem to do anything BUT quilt, now I can't bring myself to do any actual quiltingy things. Which is a problem, because I have the September Aussie Handmade Birthday gift to make, two Supernova Swap Blocks, the Secret MakeModernMagazine project, and heaven knows what else!

Work is busy, I have writing things due, and my brain is all HOUSE GARDEN HOUSE GARDEN HOUSE GARDEN right now, which isn't exactly condusive to quilting brain.

Incidentally, if you keep chickens in suburbia (or urbia, really) I'd love to hear your experiences. My 'house and garden' blog is over here: The Suburban Permaculture Garden.

WIPs

Passacaglia

Public transport projects...

Another rosette done! Sewing it onto the main section this weekend with the Sydney MQG gang...

Supernova Swap

I've cut out the pieces, and will be putting them together over the weekend. Maybe. Probably. If I can brain. Ugh.

No Movement

Everything else. Seriously, everything else.

BIRTHDAY GIVEAWAY

The winner of the Birthday Giveaway was Heather of Swing Station!

Congratulations, @swingstation! You've won my birthday giveaway! DM me your address so I can send you your winnings!

Her parcel will be winging its way out to her as of tomorrow when I get out to the post office.

Aussie Handmade Birthday Club!

I joined one of the Aussie Handmade Birthday Clubs - 12 people, and each one is assigned a birthday month. During your birthday month you're sent handmade gifts from other people in the swap club.

And my birthday month was August!

Several have already arrived!

@iamacraftykat! Thanks so much for your lovely gift! Such useful baskets - my basting pins are going in the middle and the clover clips in the smallest! #aussiehandmade3 @msmidge you made the #seabreezemqal for me!?!   and the onion relish looks so many kinds of delicious! Thank you! #ahbcparty3 I love me some quilty office practical in action. Thanks @megfishc! (Not shown: the spool of #aurifil and the cute heart -shaped paperclips!) #ahbcparty3

Now I have to think of what to make for the September Birthday Girl!

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So what have you been doing this week? Have you linked up to Freshly Pieced?

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

WIP Wednesday: The One With BIRTHDAYS!


Done Like A Dinner

SeaBreezeMQAL

Not the Heirloom quilt, mind you. That still needs the binding sewn down. It's been sewn down for at least three months! *blushes*

But the SeaBreeze mini, the Snowflake Cushions, and the Batik Cushions were all completed - fully completed - these last three weeks!

I was going to make a post about the Snowflake Cushions and the Snowflake Quilt, but I haven't had the chance. The Batik Cushions are old WIPs. As in, WIPs for six or seven years, quilted, but never completed, and never shown anywhere. They'll stay at home on a couch or lounge, or under a cat. One of those things. :)

Anyway, one of the Snowflake cushions and the SeaBreeze mini are both hanging in the NSW Quilt Guild offices in the city, hopefully being admired for their bright, bold, not-brown modernness!

WIPs

Passacaglia

Sewing the rosettes together!

#epicmillefioriquilt joining pieces together at SCQuilters...

And sewing some of the star-and-diamond sets together wrong on the morning commute: what happens when your brain and fingers go on automatic:

DSC_1612

King of Bling (a.k.a. "Red Letter Day" #redletteraustralia)

Top is all sewn together!

"Nearly finished Friday": #redletteraustralia top finally sewn together! I think it will go to the adopted daughter of some friends in the US.

I think I'll get it all-over machine quilted, and it'll go to the adopted daughter of some friends in the US.

It's called 'King Of Bling' because my youngest sister saw it, and those were the first words out of her mouth. When I finally stopped laughing, I asked why she said that. "It really has its disco on," was her answer.

So, 'King of Bling' it is!

Mystery MakeModernMagazine

Make Modern Magazine is a new online crafter's magazine in Australia, and they've asked for quilt pattern submissions for their first issue.

I think it's a bit late to submit anything for the first issue, and I'm pretty sure that they've had dozens of submissions from the various quilters all over Australia.

I haven't sent mine in yet. Mostly because I haven't done the math properly - this is, admittedly, where I fall over like a great falling thing. Because I'm good at math, but I hate working things out. much easier to just keep making them until one falls over! (Or something.)

But I got my Cotton+Steel order a couple of weeks ago. My original plan was pretty much just to get the basics, because the colours were pretty good, but all the mint and peach colours weren't my thing. And then I saw the fabric in person, on the bolt.

Peoples! Still so much @cottonandsteel beauty at @kimbradleycreations! I think I'm going to buy some more!

And I bought just a little more fabric...

Then I got it all home and started cutting into the C+S basics. And the longer I stared at the colours, the more I liked them.

And now I want to buy the linen for bag projects when I haven't finished the linen I already have. And I want to buy the prints that I didn't think that much of when I first saw the collection because I'm starting to think that they'll good nicely with [insert project here]. And I'm starting to like those crazy lions and the ibex thingummies and this is WEIRD.

I have decided that there's a spell on this fabric. Seriously. Because mint and peach are NOT MY THING. They have never BEEN my thing. They are STILL not my thing.

But I am finding that I really LOVE them in the C+S collection.

WHAT. ON. EARTH.

I swear @cottonandsteel have something in their dyes. I'm starting to like colours I wouldn't usually touch with a ten foot pole..

But I will say this: well played, C+S. Well played!

Piecing, piecing, piecing. #secretproject #ofDOOM and in the background my hard-driven Brother NS50 which I bought before I realised there were machines specially designed for quilting. And which is in for its first service in...um...as long as I've had i

And all of the rambling about C+S is really just to say that I has a Sekrit Projekt in the works. Made of C+S. Because it really is a ridiculously nice fabric line!

Destash

The destash has been going pretty well - lots of fabric bundles going out the door!

DSC_1608

Still more to go, though!

*sigh*

The Wall Of Crazy Projects

DSC_1611

That's the Millefiori Madness (Passacaglia), the Supernova Friendship swap, and a little handsewing I stopped doing over a year ago because I didn't imagine how I was going to finish it all. I think I'm just going to make a cushion out of it. (Convenient things, cushions!)

No Movement

Snowflake Quilt

Haven't touched it since July. (Yes, it's only the 6th day of August, but still!)

No 'to do' list today. Just the observation that I think I have to cease piecing any new quilts, no matter how many cool ideas I get. Because in less than a month, I will have MY OWN HOUSE and it needs priority. Before I make all the floor quilts ever. (...I could make them out of Cotton+Steel!!! o.O SOMEONE STOP ME!)

BIRTHDAY GIVEAWAY

In case you haven't noticed, I'm a bit excitable today. That's because it's my birthday. (And because I'm at work typing this up because I finished three major issues that have been wanting resolution for a couple of days. SO RELIEVED!) Anyway, If the title didn't tell you it's my birthday, this paragraph probably did.

And this giveaway certainly will.

So, this birthday's blog giveaway is A Heap Of Heather!

Birthday giveaway!

To celebrate My Birthday, 2014, I am giving at least two yards of Heather Ross' Mendocino Mermaids fabric. Mermaids! Swimming sisters! Octopi! Seahorses! Chances are, there will be at least one FQ of Mermaids in Gold, and one FQ of Swimming Sisters in Fuchsia. The rest of it will be whatever I can pull together from my stash of Mendocino. (Yes, I have a stash.) And yes, they're re-releasing the collection next year, but sometimes it's nice to have a little of the original, too! :)

To enter, just leave a comment on this post telling me which of my WIPs you like best. (Or which of my finishes.)

eta: I have decided to offer a second entry for my instagram followers, after all. So one entry for commenting here on the blog, another for being one of my Instapeeps!

Draw will close this Saturday midday, Australian EST. What time is that where I am?

Have a good week!

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Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced. I didn't quite write five pages of WIP. I think. Maybe I did!

The Great Aussie Destash! (a.k.a. "the purge")

I've been destashing for a while, actually - since the start of the year when I realised that my fabric milieu had changed in the five years since I really started collecting fabric and that I needed to be rid of a lot of the older stuff, and needed to be more careful about what I bought.

Also, around April, I acquired the stash of a friend of a friend which she'd been sitting on for 10 years without doing any quilting. She didn't figure she was going to get back into quilting so would I like it?

Like any quilter, I contemplated the possibility of free fabric and went YES.

catherine's stash

Before I realised that all that fabric required sorting. And selling. And storing. EEK.

destash april 2014

There are some good pieces in there - like all these solid colour homespuns!

That feeling of complete organising failure. (well general failure, actually) Solids anyone? #fabric

Homespun, yes, but still useful for backings. I've already used quite a bit of yardage for backings. Donated a lot to a church quilting group out in the south-west (at the parental home of a Sydney friend). Sold a few on FB.

And instagram.

Destash

And more instagram.

Destashing

I'm debating the wisdom of FB, though. People only ever buy individual fabrics, not bundles. And when they buy the bundles, they fuss about the postage!

I suspect this is because Instapeeps (largely quilty peeps) order online often enough to be very well aware that quilting fabric has weight to it and that postage costs money. FB peeps (mostly home crafters) buy their fabrics from the local fabric store and so get it by length and don't think about how much it costs to send by weight. It makes a difference in how they approach purchases.

A final glimpse of my destash space (and my WIP space, and my fabric storage space, and my non-quilt-craft storage space, and...):

DSC_1608

Linking up to The Purge over at Stitched In Color, because it's fun when you're part of a team. (Everything is awesome!)

*runs away from the earworm*

Monday, August 4, 2014

it's nice to be noticed

At the Southern Cross Quilters group on Saturday, one of the women mentioned that she'd seen a blogpost about the Sydney Craft and Quilt Fair that mentioned my quilt. She couldn't remember who or where, but she said that the blogger was looking at the quilts just for things that appealed to her, not with the eye of quilting judges, and that mine was specifically mentioned.

Four hours later, upon arriving home from SCQuilters group, I get a text from Penny Poppleton with the link in it!

The blog is Forever In Fibre and the post is here: Sydney Craft and Quilt Fair - the quilts.

You might recognise one of the quilts. :)

Speaking of the Quilt Show, the NSW Quilt Guild (who runs the show) asked Penny Poppleton to speak at their August meeting about 'modern quilting' and the Sydney Modern Quilt Guild. And she asked if there was anyone willing to come with her and bring some quilts, and I offered to come and lend moral support.

I think it went quite well. The ladies were all older, but very open to what we talked about, and the Guild asked if they could hang a few of our quilts in their office for the month. Which is how my Snowflake cushion, the SeaBreeze mini, and my Mondrian Dreaming are all gracing the walls of the NSW Quilt Guild!

NSW quilt guild

I also got a pic of Mondrian Dreaming hanging up. I wasn't very assiduous about photographing the quilt show this year - not even my own quilts...

Mondrian Dreaming

(The black strip along the bottom is the skirting, and the grey is the floor; it disconcerted me for a few moments and I took the picture!)

This is a quilt that's gotten quite a bit of interest from quilters - especially after I explain how it's made. I think people are quite interested in the "traditional block in new designs" angle: and the fact that something so 'modern' can come out of something so 'simple' is attractive, too!

I'm really happy about that, as a matter of fact. The reason I put that quilt into the show was so people could see that quilts don't have to be fancy and amazing (I mean, the show is full of amazing quilts) but can be simple and pretty and practical - this is something that would easily go on a bed or a couch, be snuggled under, covered in household gunk, and thrown in the wash, not something that people would be all 'oh, I can't use that'. So to have people look at it and decide "hey, I could do that" is good. That's how I got into quilting myself, after all!

Also, while I'm basking in the glow, Di of Snippets 'n Scraps was so lovely as to include my Mondrian Dreaming in her 2014 Quilt Show post. Di's selvage skirt at the show was beautiful and has inspired me to try the same thing. Exactly when, I don't know, but I'm wondering if my Cotton + Steel selvages will be sufficient, or if I should stop selling the selvages I've got all collected up...



Monday, July 28, 2014

Welcome to the Sea Breeze MQAL!

Welcome to my day on the Sea Breeze MQAL bloghop!

I watched Canoe Ridge Creations run the MQAL the first time with some interest and delight in the design. However, my primary thought on seeing the size of the quilts was "oh, way too small for me to bother".

I'm generally a big quilts person. In fact, when I was basting a picnic quilt at the Sydney Modern Quilt Group sew-in a couple of months back, one of the women who knows me well studied my work, looked at me and asked, "Isn't it a bit small, Sel?" (And it was small compared to the size my quilts usually end up!)

SeaBreezeMQAL

So, mini-quilts? Not my thing. And then Angie at GnomeAngel decides to run the Sea Breeze MQAL on instagram and intarwebs and puts out a call. And I, like the overenthusiastic, DO ALL THE PROJECTS, A-personality type that is me, sign up to be even busier than I already am!

Plus, HSTs! HSTs are my nemesis. Or possibly my Jekyll-and-Hyde. On one hand, they're so cute and versatile, capable of making so many patterns and sub-patterns, on the other, they require cutting into squares, drawing lines down the middle, sewing on each side of the line, cutting along the line, pressing the seams open, and trimming! That's five extra steps in block development! Who has time for that, I ask you?

SeaBreezeMQAL

Okay, so clearly I have time for that. Or I like the result. One or the other. Possibly both.

With a name like "Sea Breeze" and given the stash of Kona solids occupying my shelf-space, I kind of felt like I really should go the blue fabric route. Lots of blue, and a nice, stormy grey in Kona Slate. (I don't know the specific Konas I used, I'm afraid, I didn't check.)

My day to instagram the #seabreezemqal with @gnomeangel: the story so far. Warning! Layout on instagram may not necessarily resemble final quilt!

Then there was the question of design. I wasn't as daring as some of the other bloggers in the MQAL (deviate from the pattern? *clutches pearls* Oh, how could you?) but I did want to do something a little different from the norm. The standard layout looks lovely - like a still, deep pool. But this is the SeaBreeze MQAL, after all. So I figured I'd mix it up.

SeaBreezeMQAL

('scuse the toes!)

Now it's more 'choppy seas' than 'rainforest jumping pool'. And adds a bit of intrigue to the design: the eye focuses on the dark grey rather than the blues.

SeaBreezeMQAL

I backed it in the remaining scraps, and quilted it on my domestic machine which doesn't have a BSR.

SeaBreezeMQAL

The quilting is pretty bad up close, so I'm limiting pics of the actual quilting. Amy Butler's Lark turned out to be the perfect colour for the binding and adds a touch of forest to the overall effect. And I machine-bound it rather than hand-bound it because I was in a hurry to get it done and didn't feel like sewing the binding neatly on.

SeaBreezeMQAL

And here it is with my other weekend finishes - two snowflake cushions and two batik cushions.

SeaBreezeMQAL

I'm still looking at the result wondering what on earth I'll do with it. Right now, I'm tending towards gifting it to the infant son of a couple in my bible study group.

Have you gone around and looked at the various SeaBreeze MQAL quilts yet? There's a Facebook page, an Instagram tag (#seabreezemqal), and GnomeAngel's blog to check out!