Wednesday, September 26, 2012

catching up after a break

I promised myself at some stage I would take six months off from sewing, blogging etc  and I have done that. In that time I have travelled to England and France, lots of trips to Sydney and Melbourne and done lots of knitting and cooking. I have loved the break and come back to sewing recently with an  a new enthusiasm. And now I have lots to catch up on!
Summer school in January in the Blue Mountains is looming and Karen Cunningham sent out the emails over the weekend. If you havent received one and wanted it, let me know and I will forward it on to you.
I am doing two new quilts for summer school. One is entirely in a bag at the moment but the basket quilt is well underway and I love it. I enjoy hand piecing and the appliques will be fun little things too. I can sit down of an evening and cut out and piece a basket block and then cut out the appliques, very relaxing and achievable and from a basket of scraps. Has this made any difference to my stash? Unfortunately no.

This has been very soothing while I worked out the maths for the other quilt and paper pieces made. With the hard part done, I should have something up to show you soon.

Monday, March 26, 2012

a weekend of quilting

Last weekend, we had a lovely weekend catching up with lots of friends for a weekend of quilting at our old venue in Wodonga.
Show and tell at lunchtime was fantastic. I was a bit late getting my camera out so I missed some of the gorgeous quilts, but here a few favourites.
Christine with her Nancy Horsfall's baby quilt ( a pattern from Karen Cunningham)
Simone's Duck Hill Farm, made from a pattern from me. This is the quilt that was photographed for the French magazine "Quiltmania"

Carolyn's gorgeous tumbler quilt made for her daughter, Sophie.

And another gorgeous quilt from Simone, her version of the "St Neot Band Sampler"

.... to be continued

Friday, March 2, 2012

trip to Melbourne

I have just been to Melbourne for a week, went in the heat and came home to flooding rain. The weather has been more than unusual this summer.
First stop was to order some more templates to be cut, more on that later. Next stop out to dinner with Lucy and then to the ballet on Saturday evening. It was the first performance for the year of the Australian ballet, a triple bill.
I came away with mixed feelings about this bill, as it seemed most of the audience did also. Two out of the three were not really ballet, but dance so I was a little disappointed, but the music and the last bill were gorgeous.
Next day, I taught a class of the clamshell quilt. Lovely girls and a nice escape from the heat. And of course a bit of fabric shopping as always.

The next two days I went to patisserie school. My husband gave me this a gift for Christmas. Loved it!!!!
It was so full on I was brain dead by lunch time, but hopefully when I go to cook it will all come back to me.

There was such a wonderful mix of students, from pastry chefs from all over the world to a couple of people like me, where cooking is just a hobby.

And lots of very sweet petit gateaux to take home. My daughter took a fancy morning tea to the hospital for two days in a row, she was the favourite medical student of the day.

So when Christine and I are asked are we enjoying retirement from the shop, the answer is a simple yes.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

new pattern release

I am finally catching up with all the things I need to get done.

I have listed my new pattern for sale "The St Neot Band Sampler"here

Now I just need to start quilting it.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Saturday Stitching

Most Saturdays, many of the girls who attended classes at our shop, meet at the Aspect school in Albury. Saturday was our first day back for the year and there was standing room only.
We have two challenges this year, first is to finish the top of a major UFO, and second to bring along a 2kg bag of fabric from our stash( anything and any size) and we would pool it, sort it out and then we will each get back a 2kg bag of fabric.
The fabric will be hidden in a brown paper bag, and once we open it, we can swap the entire bag with someone else's bag, but we cannot swap individual fabrics. All we are allowed to add is up to 2 metres of one other fabric. At the end of the year we have to bring back a finished quilt top, but not show anyone through the year.

So on Saturday we had bags and bags of fabric, and yesterday Christine and I sorted it out. We had one pile for donation to the girls who make quilts for the orphanage in Nepal , and we packed the rest into 2kg lots, sorting it out to useable lots. Tomorrow will be the beginning of the great challenge, when we start handing them out.

Last Saturday, we saw what most girls were finishing in the UFO challenge
Beth is finishing her Trundle quilt. This is a major project, a quilt designed by Karen Cunningham, with tiny little sampler blocks all around.
Christine and Bridget and Bridgitte looking gobsmacked as Beth holds up her UFO.

Christine is completing her machine pieced, very complicated frame quilt "Remember Me". This is a quilt I taught many years ago. It is a reproduction of the Charlotte Gambold quilt from Everton. Everton is about 1/2 hour from where I live, and my husband's grandparents are both from that area. The original quilt appears in the book on Australian quilts by Margaret Rolfe.

There are a few Swan Lake aka"Dancing Dollies" quilts to be completed this year

and a few "Little Garden" quilts, another quilt designed by Karen.
and a few Irish Circles quilts.

A few of the girls have grandchildren on the way, our first baby of the year was born this week. Ruby Matilda arrived on Tuesday. So it will be a happy but busy year.

And I think these two stories are more than worthy of a mention. Sarah completed her hand quilted quilt for her son Alexander. She was having nightmares that she would die and he would be the only child without his quilt. Alexander is 16 years old, and Sarah finished the quilt. Fortunately it has been a cool summer! 
Joy completed her embroidered baby blanket for her daughter Emma. Emma is now 14 years old, and loved getting her blanket, whereas if she had it when she was a baby, she couldn't have cared less, and as Joy said, probably would have just been sick on it.

Friday, January 27, 2012

summer school and new year's resolutions

Its been so long since I posted, but life has ben more than a little hectic. My daughter has kept me busy having some surgery, Christmas, a few trips to Sydney and most of all getting ready for summer school.

Summer school in the Blue Mountains this year, was terrific. It was especially wonderful not having to organise it! Lots of girls who attended our summer school at patchwork on Stonleigh came back ( so nice to catch up with you), lots of girls from fabric club ( so nice to put a face to a name) and lots of new girls, from all over Australia. Everyone had a great time, so next year we will be back.

The Blue mountains is such a lovely place. The last time I had been there was for my brother's first birthday and he is now 46 years old, so quite some time ago!

Each day at lunchtime we had show and tell. Some beautiful quilts, antique and new were on display each day, sooo much beautiful work to be seen and inspire everyone to go home and finish a few more projects this year. I just loved this antique sampler quilt from the 1930's.

Classes each day were busy busy, and a few great shops from Sydney came with lots of gorgeous fabric. Unfortunately I found a few new pieces of fabric I needed to take home.
I came away from summer school, tired, but inspired to get into my sewing.

So my quilting resolutions for this year, are to finish the applique, quilt and bind  my Ann Daggs quilt. This photo was before the final border was attached.
I want to complete the quilt top of Irish Circles ( so much to do this might be impossible!!!) but I will give it a try. First I need to find the box of blocks I have already started, and hope it has been busy growing inside without my help.

I want to hand quilt my St Neot Band Sampler

and finish my little sparrow quilt. I wasnt happy I didnt quite get this done before summer school.

I have a few other quilts to complete the top- my sparrows nest

and of course two new quilts for summer school next year. At least this year I have decided what I will make, so the worst part is already done.

I hope this year is uneventful!!!