Thursday, July 30, 2009

Making progress...

Can anyone tell me how all these bright reds, ultramarines and turquoises came to be living in my stash? I have no recollection of buying them, and I've certainly never made a red quilt!

Yet there they were, glowing enticingly, when I went to my Great Wall of Fabric looking for inspiration, and they're just perfect for this quilt's intended recipient (I hope!). If you look closely you might spot a couple of my precious Kaffe Fassett fabrics. I don't cut into these treasures for just anybody!

The top's almost complete. Watch this space...

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Saturday, July 25, 2009

I can’t help myself

Call me unimaginative.  Call me predictable.  Whenever anyone who means a great deal to me has a Significant Birthday just can’t think of  a more appropriate gift than a quilt.  

Nothing says “You’re special” as much as a warm, soft, handmade quilt, big enough to wrap yourself in.  Now, does it?


I’ve been slicing away for several days now, cutting strips for just such a quilt, and in case the intended recipient is reading this you’ll just have to be content with this sneak peek at the strips waiting to be stitched together.

Shhhh…..  Say no more!

Friday, July 24, 2009

This made me smile - I hope it brightens your day too!

This is just one of those heartwarming video clips that makes you smile! An elderly couple (he's 90 years old) give an impromptu recital on the piano in the lobby of the Mayo Clinic.


Tuesday, July 21, 2009

It’s Tuesday and I can’t wait…

…to hop into bed with my laptop! (Do you take yours to bed too?)IMG_0998 On a cold winter’s night I just love to snuggle down and catch up with all my friends’ blog posts that my Google Reader has been saving for me through the day.  How many blogs do you follow?  What a wonderful world of creativity there is in blogland!

Then I might pop on over to Facebook to see what Lynda, Lindi, Neroli, Bec, Kate, Susan (even that smart-alec cat!) and others have been up to.  That’s always good for a laugh. 

Finally, if I’m not too sleepy, I’ll drop in on the Facebook Scrabble board and make a few moves in the dozen or so slow-burning games I have on the go – ever hopeful that my rating might at last begin to rise rather than continue the current sad downward spiral.  Just call me Pollyanna!

Then it’s “Goodnight friends”…..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

[If you’d like to join in the fun of “It’s Tuesday and I can’t wait…” pop over to ButtonsByLouLou where you’ll find the rules, as well as a list of all the bloggers who are playing.]

Saturday, July 18, 2009

More variations on a theme

Quilt 3

IMG_0977 A mere nod in the direction of The English Quilt here.


Appliqueed gum leaves and blossoms have replaced the hexagons, and cross-stitched blocks of colourful waratahs, boronias, wattle and Christmas bells make this quilt as Aussie as can be. Gorgeous!

Quilt 4

IMG_0985 Delicate English roses everywhere you look on this one. For most of us this was a stashbusting exercise – I just wish I had some of these delectable fabrics lying around in my stash! IMG_0987

Quilt 5

Instead I delved into my ridiculously large collection of blues to create this scrappy little number.IMG_0989 IMG_0990 How I came to have so many blues is a complete mystery since everyone knows I’m totally besotted with the colour pink!

Friday, July 17, 2009

How can I stitch thee, let me count the ways…

Five of us have just come to the end of another quilt journey (if you don’t count the quilting itself – and who does?!). 

We all started with the same pattern, Terri Brander’s “The English Quilt” (Australian Patchwork & Quilting Vol 14 No 5 ) but once we’d applied our individual styles to this traditional medallion quilt the result was five very different – and very beautiful - variations on the theme.

I thought you might like to see the results. (with permission from the quiltmakers)

Quilt 1

IMG_0966 Here the quilter has deliberately left plenty of space around the central medallion so she can have some fun with her machine quilting.IMG_0969 I love the way (not having enough to use it lengthwise) she’s crosswise cut that vintage Robyn Pandolph stripe.

Quilt 2IMG_0982 That soft green perfectly sets off the clamshells, hexagons and bows in the centre square


[More in my next post.]

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

It’s Tuesday and I can’t wait…

… for some spare time! (You too?!?)

Helen had a generous giveaway on her blog – her clever patterns for these delectable “cupcake” pincushions and pretty doiley – and I was lucky enough to win.  Thank you so much, Helen!  IMG_0971 I have to try those, especially since I’ve loved the doiley ever since I first saw it!

My friend Lynda also sent me three of her own beautiful patterns as a little “thank you”.  There’s a Bible cover, carpet bag and cushion, so clearly written and  cheery - and I’m itching to make these up too.  IMG_0974

Ah, one day soon……

[If you’d like to join in the fun of “It’s Tuesday and I can’t wait…” pop over to ButtonsByLouLou where you’ll find the rules, as well as a list of all the bloggers who are playing.]

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Our Golden Girl

image Chloe

Chloe was six months old when she came to us, a pretty little champagne coloured puppy with gentle, loving eyes. She had an impressive pedigree but she was small for a golden retriever – even for a female – and that, along with her mottled nose, meant she would never strut her stuff in the show ring. We didn’t care, though, because she was destined for a higher calling – to be our loved family pet.

Chloe was ‘golden’, but hardly a ‘retriever’ - she steadfastly refused to fetch a ball more than once, fixing us with an exasperated look that seemed to say “Why should I get it when all you’ll do is throw it away again?”

Built for comfort rather than speed, in recent years she loved nothing better than to laze on a warm garden bed soaking up the morning sun.IMG_4206 She enjoyed so many cuddles during her full and happy life, and showed endless patience with our tiny granddaughter. After all, she had been a mother herself – after a one-night stand with the border collie down the road. It sure made us smile to see Chloe suckling five little black bundles of joy!image-1 Here she is with her babies (in no particular order!) Winston, Billie, Sox, Satchmo and Whoopi.

Sadly, we had to say our final goodbyes to our darling Chloe yesterday when she became very ill. She was 14 years old - a good age, we’re told, for a golden retriever.

As one of our children said, “She was a good girl”.

I like to think she’s in God’s perfect doggy heaven now, her old bones warmed by the sun as she sleeps forever on His flower bed.

[I know this is basically theologically unsound, but please let me have my fantasy. It helps.]

Such generosity!

You might recall me telling you a couple of weeks ago how excited and busy I was preparing a sales table for a fundraising event for our local private hospital. This is one of the two annual events our committee organises, and the ladies who come along to play cards have this day circled on their calendars from one year to the next.

Well last Monday was the big day, and when I’d set up the stall ready for the first arrivals to the Bridge Day this is how it looked.

IMG_0960 IMG_0957 So many hands had made jams and biscuits, stitched, cut, glued and knitted to produce this glorious abundance of goodies. What a great team!

I’m jumping up and down with delight, too, as I can now tell you that the sale of this colourful array you see here realised $2,500!

[The profit from the Bridge Day itself was counted separately and is still being finalised.]

Saturday, July 4, 2009

Happy 4th of July!

Hi, from across the Pacific, to all my American blogging friends (known and unknown!).  I wish you a wonderful day spent with family and friends celebrating in much the same way as we do “down under” here in our summer on Australia Day.IMG_0952I picked this beautiful red camellia just for you!