Tuesday, June 26, 2018

June's Goal Reached

Earlier this month my goal had been set at getting the last two final stages of the mystery square dance topper sewn together and if time allowed maybe a complete finish and I am pleased to say that this was accomplished.    I did debate for a few days on how to quilt this one and seeing that it was called "square dance" and we did a lot of straight line steps such as "bow to your partner" and "straight down the middle" I wanted to keep the quilting in line with that theme and went with cross hatching all of the nine patch blocks and with the blocks that had "Allemande to the left" I did straight quilting across them if they were pointing down or straight quilting down them if they were going across...confused????  Here it is below

My original thought was to use up some of the left over fabrics to make a patchwork binding but I did find a pretty piece in my stash for the backing and decided that it fitted in well enough with the fabrics to use it as the binding as well.

This one sits proudly on the dining room table.

Linking with OMG for June

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Happy sewing all

Saturday, June 23, 2018

A Star is Born

Over the last few months I have been doing a bit of "square dancing" in the form of a mystery table topper and I have Bowed to your Partner,  Bow to your corner, Come down the middle, Allemande left and last week was the big reveal.     After each step was completed I did have a bit of a play with the blocks in the hope of maybe guessing how they would all fit together but try as I may I would have never guessed the outcome.

Now you too can see "a star is born" in the middle of the blocks.   I decided to go with a plain white border and all that remains to be done now is to sandwich, pin, quilt and do the binding.    At this stage I think that I will use the left over fabrics to make a  patchwork binding.  

I keep looking at it to decide how to quilt this one.  Something to think about when I wake up in the middle of the night and cannot go back to sleep.

Linking with Oh Scrap.

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Happy sewing all

Friday, June 22, 2018

3 More ........

Fold up shopping bags have been added to the giftie box.   Before folding up

And after folding up

Once  these were finished off it was time to bring out my square dance table topper and  work on the final clue.     Before sewing the blocks together sometime was spent on re-arranging them - as one does - to get an even distribution of colour throughout the topper.   Tomorrow's job will be sewing it altogether and working out how I want the border.  

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Happy sewing all

Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Big Day Out

Today was the first day of the Annual Craft and Quilt Fair held at Darling Harbour. This year it is celebrating 25 years and from memory I think it was said that there were over 350 quilts on display  to wander amongst and admire.   The biggest number of quilts on display ever at the Show.      It is always inspirational and motivating to see what other quilters make.

As well as the quilts to see there are also plenty of demonstrations and workshops as well as  retail therapy to keep one happy for hours.   I had been looking to purchase a new sewing light but did not want it magnified and found just what I was looking for as well as a few other bits and pieces.

One piece of fabric that is missing from my stash is a white background with black writing and whilst I had seen some they mostly had very large writing and pictures on them - not what I had in mind so when I saw a bolt of what I was looking for today a metre was purchased for a future project.    I also stocked up on some more bobbin huggers and the black object behind the fabric is 50 metres of macramé cord.  That will be used for another purpose which I will show later.

My plan is to head to my sewing room tomorrow to set up my new light, wind more bobbins and put the huggers around them and with all that inspiration gained today work out my next project.

Back soon and in the meantime
Happy sewing all

Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Winter garden colour

A walk around my garden over the weekend proved to be colourful experience even though we are nearly at the end of the first month of winter.

First up is a bromeliad which gives a lovely splash of red in amongst some ferns.

This azalea which is near my sewing room flowers for the majority of the year

These colourful succulents have self seeded from where I do not know and provide a pretty cover in front of the garden fence.

My bambino bougainvillea obviously loves the spot that it has up against the front wall where it gets sun for most of the day

And lastly my Chinese tallow tree which by now should be just bare branches still has many green leaves as well as a mixture of yellow and deep red.

I hope that you enjoyed your stroll around my winter garden.   I am glad  these photos were taken on Saturday as it has not stopped raining since and even though the colour is still there it is looking very wet and dull.

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Happy sewing all

Friday, June 15, 2018

Purse size

Or shopping size

Now that plastic shopping bags will no longer be available at the end of the month it will be necessary to have reusable bags available at all times and while I do have a good supply of fabric shopping bags none of them can be folded up and tucked into a pocket on the front keeping them neat and tidy in my handbag.   This problem was solved today when I made the above bag and of course I could not stop at one.      I have had this aqua fabric in my stash for quite sometime and I thought it would make a pretty bag and even better  as it is the colour for this month's Rainbow Scrap challenge. 

And after making these two another 3 were cut out.  As you can see they are all pinned where necessary and the plan is to sew these up tomorrow.

Thanks Wendy for hosting another fun FNSI.

Linking with Finished or Not Friday, So Scrappy and Oh Scrap.
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Happy sewing all

Wednesday, June 13, 2018

Third time lucky

My walking companions and I have been washed out  twice over the last couple weeks when we tried to do the walk from Mosman to Balmoral but today was the ideal walking day....not hot, no strong cold wind or rain.   On with the walking shoes and packed in our bags were water bottles, an apple, some nuts and  a camera of course to capture our adventure.    The sign shows the beginning of the walk.  Normally I am travelling on the Manly ferry but today I was able to see it as it crossed the harbour and the third photo shows one of the many secluded bays along the harbour front.

Time to get out the book of directions and have a rest before we climbed the next lot of stairs.   One of the many lovely sandstone rock formations that we passed along the way.    I was able to make it to the top of the stairway and took advantage of the seat facing straight out through the Sydney Heads to have a sit down and a quick snack before the descent  which will take us down to our destination.  

The descent took us 15 mins of walking down stairs which can be seen in the photo below.    We are about one quarter of the way down at this point.     Our destination - Balmoral Beach and our reward of fish and chips for lunch.   We all felt we earned it after walking for 2 and a half hours.    I have never walked up and down sooooo many steps in one day.

Fortunately there was a bus stop just across the road  which took us to the top of the hill and then it was out of that bus and into another one for the ride home.  

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Happy sewing all

Monday, June 11, 2018

A wet long weekend

We have been without rain for such a long, long time and once it started it has not stopped.    With all that dampness and lack of sunshine we have little clumps of toadstools popping up all over the garden.

Seeing that it has been far too wet and cold to do any outdoor activities like gardening so what better way to spend a long wet weekend than warm and dry in my sewing room.   Each year my quilting group does a  charity project and this year we are making library bags for students in underprivileged countries.   The group was divided into cutters, side seam sergers and I ended up in the group that was forming the casings for the drawstrings to be threaded through.   Each of us were given around 20 bags to work on.

My pile is now ready to be handed over to the  drawstring threaders.   I have also been given fabric to become one of the cutters so we vary the tasks between us.  

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Happy sewing all

Saturday, June 9, 2018

Can you see it??????

No nor can I.    What you are looking for is this hiding behind the thread holder.

The story behind this is last year I made a few snap top glasses cases and the metal tape measure somehow became unraveled from its holder and I had a "bright light bulb moment" to store the unraveled tape in a cardboard tube and put it in a safe logical place where I would find  it next time it was needed.    Not so.  Yesterday when I was looking for it  as hubs was in desperate need of a new glasses case I spent half an hour looking for a much smaller rolled up remainder of the metal tape and had forgotten all about my safe logical  place.

Anyway after much moving of things, muttering of not nice words  and just when I beginning to think that I must have used it all up because it is definitely not in this sewing room I  spotted it lurking behind the threads all upright,  safe and waiting to be used.     How many times does that "safe place" get forgotten about?    Far too many I am afraid.

Once it was retrieved, things put back to their place I was able to continue with my plans for FNwF which was a snap top glasses case for hubs.

Thanks Cheryll for hosting another fun sewing night and if you would like to see what the other 17 participants did last night this is the place to go.

Linking with Oh Scrap.

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Happy sewing all

Wednesday, June 6, 2018

A Team Effort

Miss M has been having "a go" on my sewing machine for a sometime now and it was decided that she could perhaps start to make a pair of pyjama pants for herself so into grandma's stash and we found some leftover fabric from a top that I had made her a couple of years ago.   The little video below shows Miss M making a start

She went as far as getting the side seams on both legs sewn up and then handed over the tricky bits of the construction part to me.   Here is our team effort below.

Hubs and I live opposite a wetland area and we frequently have  wildlife visitors come into our back garden.    During the week I was lucky enough to get a photo of a white faced heron.    I have seen this bird in the garden before but it is very nervous and usually takes flight when it sees me  however this time I was able to get up quite close without it realising.

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Linking with Friday Finished or Not.

Happy sewing all

Saturday, June 2, 2018

OMG for June

First of the month means goal setting and for this month I have been very slack in my "square dance lessons" so I will spend the time practising and catching up.   I did get as far as doing "Allemande left" which involved cutting a template and drawing a diagonal line from the top left hand corner to the bottom right hand corner and taped onto the ruler.   This was then placed on one of the previously made units with the diagonal line placed down the middle of the seam line with a cut being made at the top and the left side.   When this was done the unit was then flipped up to the other side and the process repeated  with the result  seen below.

Now I have to catch up on the "Promenade" and the final clue will be given  later on this month.   I may even surprise myself and have the whole topper ready to show.....I had better not get too far ahead of myself.

Linking with Elm Street Quilts.

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Happy sewing all


Friday, June 1, 2018

Out and about this week

This week my two walking companions and I caught the Manly ferry into the city

And from there we walked through the Royal Botanic Gardens

Until we reached the Art Gallery of NSW to view the annual Archibald Art Prize.

The Archibald Prize is awarded annually to the best portrait, 'preferentially of some man or woman distinguished in art, letters, science or politics, painted by any artist resident in Australasia’.

As with any exhibition there is always a variety of pieces to enjoy.    Some to my liking and others not but they all make for interesting viewing and conversation.  

We were to put on our walking shoes on Wednesday and do a walk around the harbour foreshore  from Mosman to Balmoral but it decided to rain so that adventure has been put on hold for another day so Plan B it was - off to the movies to see The Bookshop.    A movie that all 3 of us enjoyed.  It was shot in Ireland and Spain with some lovely scenery.   Whilst the move could be considered "slow"  I did enjoy learning about the characters and the story behind each of them.   

I have to admit that I have spent far too many hours getting my new computer sorted and learning where things are.   After having had my old one for 7 years I could do everything without thinking now I have to "look where" is that button and how do I do that.   However I did have time to whip up a  cover for my new hot water bottle from some left over fleecy fabric.   

Now that winter is here  my feet will be cold until next summer arrives a hot water bottle is a must when sitting watching tv or reading to put my feet on to keep warm.  

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Happy sewing all