Wednesday, July 16, 2014

WIP Wednesday - the one with plenty of snowflakes!

So it's been a week! What a week! I got a little bit more progress done in-between everything else, but not much. Not as much as I would have liked.

The main reason - the big reason - is that on Saturday, my sister and I bought a house!

Our house (to be)! Is a very very very nice house, with two cats in the yard... #yesweboughtit #holycow

Small house on manageable block in good location. Pretty much ready to move into, and seems in good condition - we need to confirm that with some inspections. It was within our budget and even if it turns out to need serious repairs, we can afford that. (At least, I'm pretty sure we can.)

I'm still in a state of "WHAT HAVE WE DONE??" though...


Rainbow Snowflakes

So this is most of the stuff I've done this week - getting my snowflakes up and moving.

There's the scrappy snowflakes which I'm piecing with painstaking care:

WIP Wednesday: snowflakes

And the two original snowflake blocks I made, which I'm turning into cushion covers:

WIP Wednesday: snowflakes

So basically, my design wall is entirely snowflakes:

WIP Wednesday: snowflakes


Sloooowly moving - getting onto the smaller rosettes!

Moving on to the smaller rosettes in the #epicmillefioriquilt...

No Movement

The six quilts and their backings are sitting in a package on my kitchen floor, because I haven't been able to get it to the post office. Saturday. Definitely Saturday...

SeaBreeze mini QAL

I have fabrics! I have plans! I just have no space to enact them!

step 1: finish the snowflakes by Saturday so there's not all these little pieces lying around
step 2: start cutting and sewing the blocks on Saturday
step 3: resist the urge to make it a big mini quilt (I don't usually do small quilts! I do ginormous queen-sized ones!)


1. Finish as many WIPs as possible before moving

1. Build Me Up Buttercup - borders
2. USA Hurray - borders
3. All Around The World - borders

2. Destash! Destash! Destash!

And this will be fabrics, books, perfume oils, drawing stuff - SO MUCH STUFF. My middle sister and I will be moving into a house that is basically one-third the size of our current one. Which we have lived in for the last ten years straight, and before that for thirteen years on-and-off.

That's a LOT of stuff.

At least we don't have to get out of our current house for another four months at the extreme range, although the parentals (who technically own the place) would like us out at the three month mark so they have a month to sort, garage sale, and bin everything we leave behind!

other things

The house we've bought has floorboards under the carpet. My only hard line before we move in is to remove the carpet and polish the floorboards. Which means we will have big expanses of floor needing rugs. I've decided to make quilt-rugs to cover the floor in each of the rooms. I can design them however I like, they'll be easily washable, and pretty! (That's my reasoning, anyway.)

So I need to start sourcing slightly more hardy fabrics for the backing.

How about you? What have you been doing this week?

Monday, July 14, 2014

Mad Monday: the one with a house sister and I bought a house on the weekend.

I'm still in the whole up-and-down "WHAT HAVE WE DONE" state of mind, compounded by the little things that are anxious-making, like mortgages, and inspections, and suchlike.


Our house (to be)! Is a very very very nice house, with two cats in the yard... #yesweboughtit #holycow

Our own house! Pretty much ready to move into!

(Did I mention the anxious-making?)

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

WIP Wednesday: the one with a QAL!

Done: Quilt Backings!

I got four of them together and they're being posted this morning!

WIP: Snowflake Quilt

I think I'm going to have to draft a paper-piecing pattern for these blocks. They can be done in pieces, but it's finicky. The first block was pretty bad. The second block was a little better.


Of course, the block that has all the really wonky seams is the one with the really visible colours!


WIP: Passacaglia

Another Rosette done!


Just have to finish sewing the last one together, And then we'll start on the smaller part-Rosettes for the lower half of the quilt! Slowly, slowly, slowly!

SeaBreeze Mini QAL

A group of Aussies organised by GnomeAngel has gotten together for a Blog-hop/Insta-hop based off the Sea Breeze Mini quilt by Canoe Ridge Creations.

Monday 21 July – Angie @
Tuesday 22 July – Kelly & Gillian @ Secret Sewing Society
Wednesday 23 July – Leanne @ Daisy and Jack
Thursday 24 July – Rachel @ Little White Dove & Penny @ Happy Spider Knits Podcasts
Friday 25 July – Melissa @ on Ms Midge
Saturday 26 July – Amanda @ mucho xoxo & Kate @ Stitched with Love
Sunday 27 July – Linden @ Vine Lines Quilting Adventures
Monday 28 July – Sel @ Mad Quilters Disease
Tuesday 29 July – Raylee @ Sunflower Quilting
Wednesday 30 July – Cassie @ Cassie Madge
Thursday 31 July – Deb @ Deb’s Doodlings & Cindy @ Live a Colourful Life
Friday 1 August – Bec @ Skyberries Handmade & Jo @ Jo Loves to Quilt
Saturday 2 August – Angie @

And yes, that's me on the schedule, on the 28th July!

I'm also instahopping one of the days - I think I'm the 24th July for the instahop. I'll need something to show by then, won't I? EEP!


And today is the start of the Sydney Quilt Show 2014 - ooh, and Kim Bradley's Creations has Cotton+Steel in and it's being cut at her warehouse today! Looking forward to getting my hands on that.

I went with a couple of friends, among them Jenn of Penny Poppleton, who won second prize for her quilt South-West Sunset!

As for purchasing things, I was pretty restrained, and only bought one 'jelly roll' of Reece Scanell, visible on the bottom right of the photo.


So what have you been doing? I'm linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced!

Thursday, July 3, 2014

Winter Organising Series: Day One

Day 1: Take a photo of your workspace, and list your WIPs

Summer Organising Day 1

Summer Organising Day 1

Summer Organising Day 1

Summer Organising Day 1

To do:
1. work out a sorting system for fabric - collections, stash, projects, WIPs, and scraps.
2. work out a filing system for paper things - clothing patterns, quilt patterns, books
3. work out an organising system for notions - templates, thread, bobbins, rulers, etc.
4. sell the box of stash that is yet To Go.

- millefiori madness

- USA Hurray quilt top to complete
- Build Me Up Buttercup quilt top to complete
- around the world quilt (blue-to-gold)

- supernova friendship block quilt
- Red Letter Day blocks
- batik log cabin blocks
- 2 Camille Roskelley block quilts

- Sweetwater Town Hall
- Momo
- Farmhouse
- Pantone Quilt Challenge
- California Girl

- Mendocino Mermaids
- Honey HOney
- Rainbow Charms

- snowflake quilt (entry for SEWvivor?)
- Aviatrix Medallion quilt
- Heather Ross: Imagine Greater (Imaginary Creatures)
- Magic Stars by Aneela Hoey
- Juliet Dress in Washi Tape Fabrics
- baby quilt for Teddy W
- scrap patch block

Wednesday, July 2, 2014

WIP Wednesday: the one with Cotton and Steel!

I'm all quilted out this week!

I offloaded a heap of stash to a friend's mother whose quilting group will use it instead of just storing it.

Show quilts are done and handed in. And next week is the 2014 Sydney Quilt Show! I'm looking forward to seeing all the lovely quilts, and catching up with Sydney quilters all over the region.


Show Quilts

I couldn't change the quilt name in time for the show, so "Do You Know Where You're Going To" is still "Walkabout"'s label of the quilt in the show. Ah well. That one will be one to hang on a wall somewhere in the house.


"Mondrian Dreaming", on the other hand, will be gifted out to one of my friends. Exactly whom, I'm not entirely sure. We'll see who wants it, I guess!


Not much movement - I was so focused on finishing the show quilts that I put everything else on hold.

Friendship Supernova Swap

First supernova friendship block done!

The yellow checks keep the focus on the centre, I think. This is for my swap partner; the one behind (less well made) is for me. #supernovafriendship #blockswap

Now to start on the next one! I'll use a few of the fabrics from this one in the next one, and add some more based on the fabrics in the block that I receive from my swap buddy. I figure that will even out the colour choices of the quilt overall and make it more even-handed.

No Movement

- Rainbow Snowflakes: still up on the board

- Passacaglia: still in the handsewing bag with no progress

- six quilt backings and their tops to my quilter: nope.


Find and buy a house!

Our house is being sold, contracts exchanged on Friday, six weeks to settlement. We then have three months to vacate the place before the bulldozers turn up (since it's being developed) which means finding somewhere that my sister B1 and myself can afford to live.

Let's just say that Sydney isn't very affordable right now. *sigh*

However it turns out, it means I'm going to have to start sorting out my sewing supplies, because we'll definitely be moving to a much smaller place, and while I will get a room for my crafts, it will be much smaller and will need to be considerably better organised! I'm going to have to work out a system that's better than "toss it in this drawer and I'll find it later". Which is my current system and it doesn't always work very well!

other things

Ooh! I got to have a look-feel at Cotton+Steel in the flesh on Saturday. Sydney quilt shop Kim Bradley's Creations had the RJR C+s reps come in, and I went to check out the samples!

Walkabout, Mondrian Dreaming, Cotton+Steel

It is a lovely collection, but the colour combination is not quite me. I did pre-order the Basics collection, though - those will be useful - and a few of the fabrics that I think will look better as pieces of clothing than in my quilts.

If you're in Australia and looking for this collection, Kim Bradley's Creations is ordering in the ENTIRE COLLECTION in bolts, and selling them in FQ bundles. With a payment plan if you can't afford all 140-something prints at once! They're supposed to be arriving this week and will be on sale at the Sydney Quilt Show next week. And after this lot is gone (and it will go) there isn't anything more scheduled to come in until after August!

Blogger Sherri at "A Quilting Life" put together a Summer Organisation Series for cleaning up quilting spaces. Looking through it, I found it pretty useful. And I suspect I'm going to need it. See above re: "current system of organisation". I've been thinking that I might start putting my scraps ( < F8 size) into the boxes that fit in my IKEA EXPEDIT bookshelf (4x4). It would mean I couldn't see them easily, but I'd only pull out the scraps when I'm actually making a scrap quilt. And I don't need to be reminded that they're there - scraps are an inevitable by-product of the quilting process and somewhat unavoidable. I do need to work out exactly how small they are before I should just throw them out or start using them as cushion padding (or something, IDEK).

Finally, I still have a bunch of stash fabrics to sell - more 'traditional' prints, fewer modern ones. And quite a bit of coloured homespun. Maybe I can piece it together for curtains in the new house?

Anyway, that's me. Hope you've been busy, and thanks for stopping by!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

WIP Wednesdays: the one damning the torpedoes

Racing towards the Quilt show!

Why is it that everything is always due ALL AT ONCE? I'm going to be binding quilts at Bible Study tonight, at a tea party on Saturday afternoon, and probably while watching my hockey club's D-grade team on Sunday (I'll be on the field for the A-grade game and padded up as goalie for the C-grade game).

Let's not even talk about labels and hanging sleeves. Oy.


Show Quilts

Both are in variable states of binding, but they're looking pretty good!

Ready to go! #quilting #latergram

That's Mondrian Dreaming on the frame on Saturday.

Waiting to register for quiltcon...

And that's last night when I stayed up to register for QuiltCon. Alas, I suspect I borked something up in the rego with the MQG, because I didn't receive the email with the registration link. *sadface*

I think I'll just stick to the online classes and the tutorials, and do any local classes with designers that turn up in Australia. The Camille Roskelley class was great fun, and she was so sweet and lovely. And it's nice to meet up with other women who also love quilting!

On the plus side, not going to the US in January means I might be able to get to Europe next summer when a couple of friends will be over there working/travelling! And go to the US in September for Dragon*Con. With extra bonus cosplay?

Friendship Supernova Swap

Cutting and piecing is taking place! And laying out. I think I want more contrast, although not quite so vivid with the yellow, perhaps?

Deciding on the colour layout for the #supernovafriendship #blockswap. It's harder than it seems!

This block will be in the mail by the end of June, but probably not actually received until mid-July. I better write to my swap partner about that. And ask about her food allergies... *grin*

Rainbow Snowflakes

Yes, I've started another project. With teeny-tiny pieces (1" finished diamonds).

Remember the pattern I made for Madame Parfait's "Rainbow Blossom" block back in 2012? I called it the "Snowflake block" because I'm lazy like that (or possibly just Australian), and made a couple and stuffed them in a box somewhere.

I'm pulling the pattern out again. This time going scrappy.


It's going to be a bit more difficult with individual scrappy pieces than it was strip-piecing, but I'm confident I can manage it. I'll be working with Michael Miller Cotton Coutere instead of Kona this time - the CC collection is a little thinner and finer than Kona, and will probably better for working with small pieces. (And I ordered major yardage from the Fat Quarter Shop.)

I think that's going to sit on the design wall for a week or two while I get everything else finished. Heck, I had that up pretty much the night I quilted Mondrian.


No Movement

- Passacaglia: lots of little pieces sewn, nothing worth taking photos. It doesn't help that I left my hand-piecing bag at bible study last Wednesday, and didn't get it back until church on Sunday night.

- make labels and hanging sleeve for show quilts.
- mail the NSW Quilt Guild and tell them of the changes in name and quilt size for the show: still haven't done this
- six quilt backings and their tops to my quilter: still not done!

other things

My sister and I 'liberated' a slow-cooker from the parentals, who are cooking enthusiasts, and have the kitchen and appliances to prove it. (They're also retired and have the time to bake and cook and entertain to their hearts' content, which makes a difference.) My uncle also has a yen for cooking, and he bought a sous vide/slow cooker combination that he liked so much, he bought my parents one.

They already have a slow cooker. And a pressure cooker. And probably a sous vide tucked away in a cupboard somewhere. I wouldn't be surprised. So my sister asked if we could take the slow cooker/sous vide the uncle bought and the parentals said yes.

I may be on the way to addiction. Throw the ingredients together in the morning! Turn on the slow-cooker! Come home to a house that smells delicious and a dinner that tastes as good - if not more so!


So far, I've made Pineapple Pork and Black Bean Beef. No, the alliteration wasn't intentional, it just happened that way. Recipes and finished pictures will follow, but they won't be, like, food blogger standard, because I can barely take decent photos of my quilting work, and photographing food levels up the difficulty by a thousand or something.

Anyway, how's your week been? Have you been productive? I'm linking up to Freshly Pieced's WIP Wednesday and anywhere else that I remember!

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

WIP Wednesday: the one with the World Cup!

It's been a busy week.


Mondrian Dreaming

Top is done!

Mod D9P

Not quite the effect I wanted, but good enough for the 'Modern' section of the Quilt Show. It won't win any prizes, but that's not my point in entering the show. I want to bring clear examples of modern quilting to a show that, previously, has been largely traditional styles, or art quilts.


Millefiori Madness

Still in many many pieces. More to show next week, with pictures. Now that I've finished piecing the two show quilts, I can get back to getting more Rosettes completed.

Still in desperate need of a plan.

Red Letter Day: Class with Camille Roskelley

Full post to come, but here is a snapshot of the class and the blocks we'd done by midafternoon.

Mod D9P

The blurry woman in the pic is Camille herself. She was a sweetheart and very nice - and gave us a really helpful tip on assembling quilt blocks neatly and in order!

More pics can be found on Instagram under the hashtag #redletteraustralia - including my full nine blocks as well as many others' finished quilts.

No Movement

- Friendship Supernova Swap (must start working on: needs to be in the mail by the end of June!)


- bind 'Walkabout'
- mail the NSW Quilt Guild and tell them of the changes in name and quilt size for the show
- six quilt backings for my quilter
- quilt 'Mondrian' - need to book Kim Bradley Creations' machine again!

World Cup Decorations

(This is related to sewing. Just a little. I promise!)

The really big event in my office right now is the World Cup. In an office full of guys (I work in IT) with several Europeans (including various Brits), it was never going to pass us by. So management decided to make a celebration of it - including assigning countries to particular areas, charging them to decorate in the assigned nationality, and having a party on Friday.

The decorations started off relatively small - with just a few enthusiasts:

Red Letter Day #redletteraustralia

Then it got a little bigger when people started getting competitive.

Red Letter Day #redletteraustralia

And by Friday it had seriously escalated:

Red Letter Day #redletteraustralia

This is my section - Spain - we were assigned countries, which is why all the different flags/nationalities:

Red Letter Day #redletteraustralia

On the whole, it was a lot of fun. And yes, those red and yellow pennants above the 'ESPANA' sign were sewn by me!

So, how's your week been?

Friday, June 13, 2014

FIFA World Cup (a post that is only marginally about sewing)

So, I have finally made bunting!

It was pretty easy. And I rather like the effect, although it took a bit of working out on how to use the 60degree line on my 24" ruler!

The full story is that my office is decorating for the FIFA World Cup, and we all got assigned a country for our area. We were to decorate our area to represent that country, and bring something for an Opening Ceremony Lunch at 1pm on Friday.

My section is Spain:

I'm quite pleased with the end result: simple and bright and not too cluttered. And the bunting does look nice!

Incidentally, I'm not actually supporting Spain; I'm supporting Australia. Sort of. When I remember that a game is on, and can be bothered waking up early or staying up late. I'm not that invested in the FIFA World Cup - the Hockey World Cup is much more interesting to me - like the women's game between Australia and the USA earlier today. For the record, I think the Hockeyroos deserved to win (they had possession more often than not, and more shots on goal) but damn the Americans gave them a run for their money, especially in the second half!

And those one-on-ones at the end? As both a goalie and a field player, let me tell you that it was stressful watching, but I'd prefer a one-on-one to a penalty shoot-out any day!

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

WIP Wednesday: the one with picnics!

...I wrote out this entire post once, and then my computer crashed and left me with nothing but the framework for my WIP Wednesday post. ARGH!


Oh My!

I signed up for the SEW We Quilt "Perfect Picnic" bloghop without thinking about the timing. All the things I'd have due. All the events I'd have on. Or without considering the weather.

So far, I've managed to keep my head above water. So far. And I finished my bright and happy fun picnic quilt last Thursday night...after a little drama with the bobbin running out of thread 20cm before the binding was sewn on.

WIP Wednesday: Walkabout


Still, it was done! Now I just had to hope for good weather. Which there was!


And a box of donuts (I only ate one, the rest went to church supper), Nalini Singh's latest book, and some handsewing (my Millefiori Madness).


Must go back to that park when summer comes around!

My bloghop post about the quilt is here if you're interested in taking a look!



The negative space in this quilt was always going to be for FMQ. The issue was that I'd never really done elaborate FMQ before, so it was all a big mystery, and slightly daunting.

WIP Wednesday: Walkabout

Me, being my slightly OCD self, did sketches. Lots and lots of sketches.

Lots and lots and lots of sketches.

FMQ designs for Walkabout.

My designs were very much influenced by Angela Walters' FMQ designs, and by Leah Day of the Free-Motion Quilting Project whose videos were extremely helpful!

And then I spent about 7 hours at Kim Bradley Creations on the longarm there, putting design into practise. It was a long day. A looooong day.

But it's done!

WIP Wednesday: Walkabout

I'm not sure I entirely like the end result, although I am pleased that I got to develop my FMQ skills. And I have no idea how to get the creases out... Suggestions?

Incidentally, if you happen to be in Sydney, I strongly recommend visiting Kim Bradley Creations. She's a quilter herself, does amazing FMQ, is incredibly lovely (she was helpful and encouraging all day and even went back to her house to get some bobbin thread when I ran out at the shop), and stocks a very nice selection of fabric - she's getting in the entire range of Cotton+Steel. (If only it would arrive!)

Millefiori Madness

Nearly completed a Rosette 2!

#epicmillefioriquilt Rosette of them.

Need to sew the pentagons around the edge and then that's one down, only a bajillion more to go! *facepalm*

Red Letter Day: Class with Camille Roskelley

Camille Roskelley> has come to Australia and is teaching a class at various quilt shops along Australia's East Coast. In Sydney, she's teaching at Kim Bradley Creations, and I and some friends are taking a class with her on Sunday!

We've received the pattern and are cutting up our pieces to start with so that the day can be mostly spent sewing, rather than cutting.

Red Letter Day: fabric choices

I'm questioning the dark grey right now - especially with the purple, which is very saturated. I might have to riffle through my Kona stash for something a little more stand-out in the purple.

No Movement

- Mondrian Dreaming
- Friendship Supernova Swap



Go home, To Do List, you're drunk! (I wish...)

I have the fabrics for six of the backings out of the seven "Needs Backing (to Jo @ Thirroul Custom Quilting)".

Quilts and Backings

I can't actually find my Modern French Batiks quilt top, though. Curiouser and curiouser!


So, whew, that's me done!

Oh, wait, except for the #greataussiedestash sale that we had on Monday, 11th June during the Queen's Birthday Holiday. I didn't sell everything I listed, but I sold quite a bit! Better than nothing at all. :)

Have you achieved much this week? Have you linked up to Freshly Pieced's WIP Wednesday linky party?

Monday, June 9, 2014

Let's have a picnic with SEW WE QUILT!

I signed up for this blog hop because...well, I'm not sure why. I think I had a lapse of sanity given all the other things that I have on right now - quilt show quilts, quilt backings, destash sales, house buying... Nevertheless, I refused to give up, give in, or otherwise say 'die'.

Also: while it's heading into summer territory in the Northern Hemisphere, down here in the Southern Hemisphere we're bound for winter. As a result, the weather has been growing distinctly colder and chillier, with occasional squalls. And they'd been predicting rain for the entire weekend...

Luckily, the rain obviously hadn't yet gotten the memo when I nipped down to a local park for my quilt photoshoot with a basket, a book, my handsewing, and box of donuts!


I haven't been to this park in decades - not since I was a kid, really, but it's lovely and well-kept, and well-frequented by families in the area.


And here's my happy, bright picnic quilt, all laid out!


The fabric collection for the block accents and the border is Sanae's "Oh My!" line from 2011, and the background fabric is a print that I've had lying around for at least as long - little coloured speckles on cream. I pieced and quilted it on my domestic machine just this last week.

For my picnic, I brought a book (Nalini Singh's latest Psy-Changeling novel - just came out the other day!), my handsewing (in the little "ta-da!" bag), and a box of donuts.

Sunday morning picnic: quilt, handsewing, book, donuts.

No, I didn't eat all the donuts - just one. They're destined for church supper tonight. I was going to bake (both for this and for church supper) but after I had my 20 year high school reunion last night (Wait, what, twenty years? Who gave permission for it to be twenty years?), I'm exhausted and need a "nanna nap".

When I wake up, though, I'm off to admire all the other picnic quilts around the hop: I haven't had a chance to look in-depth, but there's been some beautiful work displayed!

My fellow picnickers for the 9th are:
Monday June 9
Cherry Blossoms
The Quilting Queen Online
Mad Quilter's Disease
Daisy Days
Buzzing and Bumbling
From My Carolina Home
Sew We Quilt

But the full list can be found here (my blog), or here (sew we quilt blog).

Have a lovely summer, and when our summer comes around, I will definitely be picnicking at this park with some friends!