Thursday, September 30, 2010

Come on Down!!!! Quilt Show Alert!!!

Looking for something to do this long weekend?

Pop down to Mawson Lakes for a Quilting Extravaganza!

The Australian Machine Quilters Festival will be taking place at Endeavour College at Mawson Lakes from Friday the 1st to Monday the 4th of October.

There will be great shops and companies represented (including - Horn, Hettie's Patch, The Patchwork Apple, Patchwork on Parade, A1, Constantine Quilts, Sue's sewing world and many more) with super show specials.

Demos will be taking place all weekend. There will also be a fantastic quilt show to be inspired by - there will be over 90 quilts on display by some of the finest machine quilters in Australia.

This festival is for anyone who uses a sewing machine! More details can be found HERE on the official website.

I will be working on Mum's booth (patchwork on parade) and doing demos throughout the weekend so pop by and say hello!

See you there!

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Hibernation Complete!

Well it is a very long time since I posted! I am still here and, like Humphrey B. Bear, have been leading a very exciting life since April.

In May my husband and I made this :

And I have pretty much been asleep ever since.

I am awake now and ready to play. Stay tuned!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Friday, but not quite finished.

On Friday I spent a lovely day doing a workshop with Marg Low at the Patchwork Apple in Woodside.

We started the day with a little trunk show of Marg's designs. It was so nice to sit back and be dazzled by pretty things. Here is a little window into the lovliness....

A wee table-topper made from sawtooth stars in reproduction fabrics. I have in mind to make something similar using Ohio Stars.

A sneak peek at a project Marg has designed for the Red Club. It was very gorgeous. I am a sucker for hexagons.

Here are some super cute Christmas stockings sitting on a miniature quilt again designed for Red Club.

How gorgeous are those sweetheart birdies? I bought this pattern from Marg on the day and am keen to make them to hang on the door handles. The button is from Theadora Cleave. She makes truly lovely things.

Vicki fondling Marg's wares...

We went to next door to the Lobethal Bakery for lunch. As you can see I enjoyed highly nutritious, fat free fare. But how can you resist happiness in a can, a bolognaise pie and what are seriously the best jam berliners I have ever eaten (and believe me I have done some research into the matter)? You can't, so I capitulated and enjoyed every calorie laden morsel.

So what did we actually do with Marg? This....

Rhonda's finished journal cover

Kris's bookmark.

My half-finished journal. I was so happy because Marg taught me to needleturn applique which is something I have wanted to learn for ages. Cop the birdie! He's appliqued!

As usual I have come home, uploaded my photos and realised that I was too busy talking and didn't get pictures of everyone's projects. So I'll just leave you with another bird picture. Did I mention that he is appliqued?

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Leapin' Lizards! I'm in Homespun!

Volume 11.4 is on sale now at your local newsagent.

This exciting moment has been a long time coming...I made this quilt during our quarrantine last June. I am so pleased with the gorgeous layout that the team at Homespun put together.

I have got a couple of other exciting things in the pipeline that I can't wait to share with you, but for the moment I am going to celebrate being published in this fabulous magazine with a cup of tea and some more little houses.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A new obsession

I love the American Better Homes and Gardens Creative collection and I especially enjoy Quilt Sampler magazine. You can see by the top right hand corner that this edition has seen some lovin'. What I love about this mag are the editorials about the quilt shops they feature. They are choc full of great photos of the shops - a wonderful source of inspiration and the shops featured provide a pattern for the magazine.

In the Fall/Winter 2009 edition there was a feature on a quilt shop in California calledTemecula Quilt Co. If there wasn't a large ocean between us I would love to visit this store. It has a focus on reproduction quilts and the photos from the magazine spread have been drooled over by me on more than one occassion. The quilt pattern that the store provided (it's on the cover) features little houses. I am in love! I started making some last night before bed and have done 3 already. I am going to make a chunky cushion out of them (there is just such a cushion in the photo spread). The houses are only 4.5" finished so they are made up of lots of tiny pieces. As a result my first one was a little 'how's your mother' but I have got the hang of it now.

I have a bundle of binding to do so those little houses are the carrot I am dangling in front of myself. I have got three more cut out and ready to go as soon as the last stitch is put into this quilt.

Ok, off to bind now. Must resist houses.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Chevron Quilt Tutorial

A few weeks ago one of my very favourite people had a pretty impressive Friday Finish of her own. My friend Alex gave birth to her first baby, Connor.

This is the quilt that I designed and made for him and today I finished stitching on the binding.

You can download the free tutorial for this quilt HERE

When I was thinking about what to name this quilt I got to thinking about pop songs, poems and romantic love - heavy stuff, but bear with me. A few years ago I saw an episode of Oprah (it always comes back to Oprah!) in which the songwriter Diane Warren was talking about the inspiration for her songs. The song which I want to talk about here was "Because You Loved Me" which was sung by Celine Dion and was the theme song for "Up Close & Personal". The movie was a very gushy, romantic film and I am sure that couples all over the world danced their bridal waltz to Diane Warren's song. However, this song was not written for a lover but for her father who had encouraged and supported her. This got me to thinking about how many other seemingly romantic love songs are not written for a lover at all, but for a friend, a parent or a child (Steal My Kisses by Ben Harper is a perfect example - written for his son).

So in my mind, Marvin Gaye's "Ain't No Mountain High Enough" is the perfect anthem for a mother to her child and that is what I named Connor's quilt.

Remember to drop by Amy's and check out the other fab Friday Finishes. Enjoy your weekend everyone!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Sleigh bells ring....are you listening?

Join us for a festive two day retreat at Mannum, South Australia to celebrate Christmas in July!

When: We have two weekends available -

Friday 2nd of July - Sunday 4th of July


Friday 16th of July - Sunday 18th of July

Where: The Pumphouse at Mannum on the Murray River

Getting There : Mannum is just over an hour's drive from the Adelaide GPO and is situated on the Murray River. Don't drive? No problem - let us put you in touch with your fellow retreaters to arrange some car pooling.

Accommodation : We will be stitching in the historic "Pumphouse" situated in the grounds of the Mannum Caravan Park where you can enjoy FREE accommodation in the bunkhouse in a dorm-style share room, sleeping 4 in bunk beds. Alternatively, we can arrange for you to stay in a deluxe cabin with an ensuite - this type of accommodation will incur an additional cost.

Catering : the weekend will be fully catered, including breakfast, lunch, morning and afternoon teas on both days, non-alcoholic drinks (BYO welcome) and dinner on the Friday night - we've booked a table at the riverfront Pretoria Hotel for a traditional Christmas dinner on Saturday night.

Projects: There will be 3 yuletide projects for you to choose from: A gorgeous Christmas Sack, an Advent Calendar or a lovely Table Runner (pictures will be available in early June). Or you can feel free to bring your own projects and get a head-start for your Christmas giving.

Don't quilt? No problem, we are open to retreaters of all craft denominations - bring along your projects be they knitting, scrapbooking, card making or whatever and enjoy the time to relax and create.

Shop : What is a quilting retreat without a bit of retail therapy? Patchwork on Parade will have a shop on site with a wide range of tempting fabrics, patterns, nifty notions, giftware and more.

Cost : This retreat is $200.00 all inclusive (with the exception of dinner on Saturday night). Contact Sharon on 0411 268 924 for more information and to secure your booking.

Click HERE to download the retreat information PDF to share with your friends.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Introducing the Tardis...

I was too ashamed to take before photos so therefore my after shots are lacking in oomph. But let me assure you, if you had seen the towering piles of fabric and the miscellaneous bags and boxes stacked up under the window on my side of the bed you would be gasping in admiration of my new cupboard.

We live in a small house and I have been pining for a sewing room for some time but let's face it - that is not going to happen any time soon. As my beloved says - you've gotta run what you brung - so when I saw this cupboard on the super cheap at Super Amart I plonked down my $149 super quick. I didn't like the dodgy plastic handles it came with so Greg (be still my beating heart) took to it with his power drill and attached some others that I picked up at IKEA today.

Over the past week I have been organising, labelling and culling and this is the result. How long it stays like this is anyone's guess. Mine is 3 days.

Hopefully I will be back tomorrow with some retreat photos.

Bye for now.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Free Antique Nine Patch Pattern

I made this quilt for my BFF's birthday last year out of Cotton Blossoms fabric.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Labels can be a good thing...

For me, one of the best parts of quilt-making is doing the label. It means that the job is DONE! And it is your chance to put your mark on your own little piece of quilt making history, And if you quilt is a gift, it gives you the opportunity to tell someone how much you love them.

I thought I'd share with you how I make mine.

You will need.....

A print out of what you want your label to say, a rotary cutter, quilter's ruler, cutting mat, sticky tape, fabric for your label and a ZIG pigment ink pen. (Absent at time of photgraph - pins, contrasting fabric for border of label.)

But I am getting ahead of myself here. About the print out. I design my labels in Microsoft Word. This way I can use a lovely font, play with the size and the text and get everything just right. (My handwriting is not to be trusted to stay in a straight line).

There are loads of gorgeous fonts out there that you can download for free. I use either dafont or fontfreak for my fonts. The fonts in this label are Brock Script and Aramis.

I also like to include a quote or a little message on my labels, this quilt was inspired by Jane Austen and so I put the opening line from Pride and Prejudice on the label. A great source of quotes is quote garden.

There is all sorts of information you can put on a label but I don't like them to be too cluttered. I usually just have the name of the quilt, the quote, my name, who quilted it, when it was made and what is is made of. If it is a baby quilt/ utility quilt I just write a little message on it and that's it.

Once you have the text for the label printed out, use your ruler to determine the size of the label and cut your label fabric accordingly. Remember to include your seam allowance in the measurment. For this label I decided that 6.5" x 6.5" would be the size.

Next, tape the paper to your light box and then tape your fabric over the message, taking care that it is lined up properly and that the fabric is nice and smooth. If you don't have a light box then a window works just as well (it's just a bit more tiring on the arms).

Now, take your time to carefully trace the text using your ZIG Millennium pigment pen. I like these pens the best because they are lovely and fine but you can of course use another type of permanent pen. Done! Now carefully untape it and using a hot, dry iron set your ink.

The next step is to put a border on it. This is just like putting a border on a quilt. Determine the width you want your border strips to be (in this case 1.5") and cut 2 strips this width by the width of your label (1.5" x 6.5")

Attach these strips to your label and then repeat for the side strips adjusting your measurement accordingly (ie. the side strips in this case would be 1.5"x 8.5")

Next, turn your label over and iron a little hem about a 1/4" all the way around the edge of the label.

Then, pin the label to the back of your quilt and using a blind stitch, stitch it in place.

All done!

If you'd like to see some other examples of labels I've made click here.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Ready for the Easter Bunny

Easter Bunny can hop, hop, hippity-hop our way whenever he likes. Scarlett's Easter basket is finished and we are ready to collect eggs!

I made the basket from a kit from Hettie's Patch out of some cute Alexander Henry Fabric.

This week I also finished this cushion. I made it from the scraps of this quilt and Mum quilted it for me. You can't see it from the photo but this cushion has a covered zipper in the back - I have never been prouder of myself than I was putting that zip in!

I hope you all have a great week and maybe if the planets align I will have a Friday finish this week!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Retreat Wrap Up!!

Well we've been back in the real world for a week now, so it's time to share a few photos. I have to thank Loz and Vicki for most of these - for some reason mine came out blurry. Camera shaking from the consumption of too much Coke maybe??

The Venue
The Accommodation

The Interior of the Town Hall

The Kits and Attendee's Gift

The Projects

Happy Retreater

Hilary Painting

Mum hard at it in the kitchen


Special mention has to go to Kris in the photo above. She left the retreat on Friday night to go home for the birth of her grand-daughter and was back on deck the next afternoon. With all this going on she still managed to quilt, ric-rac and bind her quilt! Talk about above and beyond.

What a demon! Lorraine managed to finish two quilts. The 1st one she made out of fabric she bought at the retreat....gorgeous Garden Party and Old Primrose Inn. Now that is dedication.

Deb managed to whip this up from scratch over the weekend. And gorgeous it is too.

We couldn't have managed this weekend without Nana (Mavis - now dubbed Maisy by Vic). She cooked and baked and gophered all weekend without flagging. You'd never know she was 81! Here she is with Mum and a mountain of cakes that she made.

All done!! Here we are in our recliners stuffing in fish and chips. What a team! (Note the coke clutched in my hand...I think I have a small problem).

Thank you to all of the very special ladies who attended our retreat. We had an absolute ball and can't wait for the next one. On to Mannum!!


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