Thursday, August 25, 2016

"Taking Liberties" does it again

Sometimes a blogger just has to seize the day and ignore the fact that she has a gazillion unwritten posts to be written because today's news is just too exciting to wait for the correct chronological order to be observed.

When I pulled this elegantly printed fat envelope out of my letter box this afternoon I knew immediately that it contained my long-awaited copy of the Liberty of London 140th Anniversary commemorative book.

You might have heard my little squeal!

Last year Liberty put out the call worldwide for photos of Liberty memories over the years from 1875 to the present, and projects using their gorgeous fabrics. From these 140 were chosen for inclusion in this book, and my prizewinning quilt, "Taking Liberties", was one of these.

It's in excellent company, with some amazing projects featured, and I feel so honoured to have my humble work appearing alongside such talent.

Here it is, happily occupying the whole of page 46.  And look! Those dear folk at Liberty  have thoughtfully framed it!

And as if that wasn't enough, I'm a cover girl! OK, it's the back cover, and it's only half the quilt, but life's too short to quibble :-)

That little quilt, made from a charm pack of Liberty squares won in an Instagram giveaway from Australian Liberty suppliers Ava & Neve, came together quite quickly, won 3rd prize in the Small Quilt category at the Sydney Quilt Show last year, and has given me the most enormous pleasure ever since. 

It now hangs where I can enjoy those beautiful Liberty prints every day.

I've recently started another quilt using Liberties,  but you'll have to wait till another day when I have more time to tell you about that one...

Saturday, August 6, 2016

True friends

It's not all fun and laughter at St Mark's Quilters. Sometimes there are tears. And hugs. And stumbling prayers where the right words are hard to find. Our June get-together was one of those days. 

One of our ladies had just started chemotherapy following a breast cancer diagnosis, and in a gesture of support and encouragement we surprised her with a cushion. 


In case the front wasn't cheery enough we each signed a coloured strip, corresponding to a coloured hexie, and these were sewn into the cushion backing as a permanent reminder of how much we love her and hold her in our prayers. As I write this she is progressing really well.


I'd be lyin' 😂 if I said we didn't have lots of fun as well, making Blankets of Love for the Newborn Intensive Care Unit at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital here in Sydney and kindy quilts for "The Marcia", a KU preschool for autistic children at Liverpool.
Regular readers might recall when we received a very large quilt top as a donation, and Gail D took on the task of quilting it on her domestic sewing machine. Well, she brought it back, and it's magnificent! We're storing it for when an emergency happens and a call is put out to the quilting community for quilts.


Sophie and Susan made these three little Blankets of Love below.


Then we went a bit wild, with these three jungle/zoo themed kindy quilts, by Barb...



And Di C...


Sadly, one of the most loved members of our group passed away just a few days before our meeting. She was a foundation member of our group, and had been to almost every workshop over the last six and a half years. Meeting and greeting was her preferred role, and she has always made herself available for hugs when needed.

Yes, this special St Mark's Quilter was Di B's golden girl, Matilda, seen here recently enjoying a game of fetch in the park.


Quite the foodie, she enjoyed sampling tidbits from our morning teas with Di B. But 1 o'clock, which she knew as 'cheese o'clock', was her favourite time of the day. This was when she always enjoyed a piece of sliced cheese, to keep her going through the afternoon. 


She liked to wander around the hall, checking out everyone's quilt making, until recent years when her eyesight failed, but she still took great pride in her appearance and was a smart dresser, making sure Di matched her standard!
 Earlier this year Matilda enjoyed her 12th birthday. 

We'll miss you, beautiful girl, but we know you are in a better place, where your eyesight is perfect, your joints let you run free, and it's cheese o'clock every hour of the day!




Friday, July 1, 2016

Stacks more quilts!

Hello again! Thanks for saying with me. Now, where was I? Oh yes, showing off the fabulous work by our St Mark's Quilters at our May workshop.

Barb brought along two great kindy quilts...



Michaela knows you can't go wrong with sock monkeys.
Gillian showed us how easy it can be to make a quilt with lots of kid-appeal from a printed panel. Both the jungle quilt (above) and the farmyard quilt (below) are hers.


And finally, a wonderful team effort by Di B and Margaret. If you look closely you will see Di's signature orange peel quilting in those corner squares.


As usual, there was stacks of sweet goodness to fuel our efforts, this time a delicious lemon-iced bundt cake and a chocolate chip fruit slice cooked by Perdita. Yum!

 What bounty!


Stacks of quilts!


Over the course of the day, fifteen St Mark's Quilters had a fun, productive time at our May workshop (yes, it IS that long since I blogged!), finishing a bumper pile of colorful quilts for RPA Hospital's Newborn Intensive Care Unit and 'The Marcia' kindly for autistic children.


Barb and Gail caught the pieced hearts bug after I introduced them to the True Love mini quilt pattern by Megan Pitz in February, and here are their finished Blankets of Love.

By Barb

By Gail

And Liz won't be far behind once she's quilted this blue and white beauty.


Teamwork by Susie W and Di B resulted in this lovely Blanket of Love.


I wanted to smuggle this kindy quilt home in my bag. Di B used one of my very favourite Kaffe Fassett fabrics, combined with gorgeous brights!

 And this one too! Di B finally cut into her precious Emma Jean Jansen Linen Cupboard fabrics, and the result is totally amazing.


Chester gave it his seal of approval.

Margaret used a panel to make this quick and clever quilt, perfect for a little boy who loves big machines.


And Di C had fun with frogs for this one.

In fact, there were so many finished quilts to photograph that I needed to split this post. See you on the other side!




Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Many hands

Sorry about the blogging hiatus, friends. I just popped out for a spot of quilt making, self-organizing, and family time. There might have been a tad too much time spent on Instagram too.

Now, where were we?

You may recall that back in February Perdita brought along this large quilt top to our St Mark's Quilters workshop.

We all agreed that it would be perfect to have on hand to donate in case of an emergency, and Gail, bless her heart, offered to quilt it on her domestic machine.

Pinning could have been a challenging job for Gail alone, but there were plenty of willing hands at our March workshop.

A Kwik Klip is the best way Di B and I have found to close those safety pins without pricking our fingers, but without one of these some of our quilters chose to leave their pins open, while Di came along behind to close them with the Kwik Klip.

It was done in under 15 minutes!

Many hands do make light work.

Here are a few of our latest finishes.







Remember I shared this little pieced heart pattern at our February workshop?

Di J

A few of our ladies have started on their own versions, and this is Gail's Blanket of Love, with the heart shape cleverly repeated in the negative space. Perfect for one of the tiny bubs in the Newborn Intensive Care Nursery at Royal Prince Alfred Hospital.


Di C has pinned this cute Noah's Ark panel and plans to domestic machine quilt it into a Kindy quilt for The Marcia.

And Sue W has similar plans for this panel.

Finally, something I hope will make you smile. 

Like all of us, Chester loves *91 years young* Margaret, so when his friend Matilda the golden retriever (Margaret's grand-doggy) wasn't nearby he moved in for some love and pats. Beautiful picture of them both, don't you agree?