Thursday 28 January 2016

mad for plaid

Amazing isn't it, just how many options there really are?

Kathy, from Material Obsession, suggested I try a plaid
for the corner triangles on my latest WiP  'Organised Chaos' quilt {thanx Kathy!} 
I love how this soft plaid works, it sets off the florals really well,
and gives it all a more whimsical vintage-y look, which was what I was really after.

and now I'm thinking of  'plaid' as a very real option
 - for just about everything!

'Florence' by Denyse Schmidt for quilt binding
 an 'unknown' plaid for something soon - maybe something bold & graphic!
and 'Lucky Strikes' by Cotton & Steel for a baby quilt in the pipeline

 oh, and I'm playing with a tiny plaid & some stripes too...

Linking up this week with WiP Wednesday here
and with Kelly for NTT here

Monday 25 January 2016

Green Tea & Sweet Beans {update}

Thank you for all the comments & ideas last week about my 'new neutral' dilemma! Still not too sure which way to go yet, am inclined towards a "pretty" low volume vintage-y version! Will keep you posted.

So many QAL's & BOM's around just now, so easy to get tempted!
But I'm sticking to my one long term project at present, my Green Tea & Sweet Beans quilt.
In the cool of the evenings,
I'm slowly working my way through all the hand stitched applique blocks at present...

... and, I really have made some good progress been able to move forward a bit more
over the past week :)

For a few more pics pop over to an earlier post back here
and - oh dear -  do you want to see how my design wall is looking now?

Once all the blocks are made, there are 'filler' strips & 1" square checkerboard bits to make,
and then this quilt is put together in four large sections.
So, still a little way to go yet! 

Linking up with Kathy here for 'slow stitching Sunday'

a bit more #40
This sweet pattern is one of Jen Kingwell's and can be found here
over at  Amitie Textile Fabrics in Australia

Thursday 21 January 2016

maybe red is my new neutral

If you have stopped by occasionally, you will know that I love scrap quilts. I love making them, love gifting them, and I really love sleeping under them too! Over the last few days I've been trying to make a few decisions about my latest quilt, for which I used a focus fabric plus scrappy fabric stash, and was inspired by Sujata's 'Organised Chaos' quilt. {see here for earlier details} 

These really are hexagon blocks with a difference, quite addictive, and lots of  fun!

After making 20 blocks
I spread them all out on the floor and looked at them {and walked around them!} for a few days

I needed to make a decision about filling in those corner triangles

I trialled a few options first

First up - low volume creams & whites, which really emphasised the lovely secondary circles,
but very traditional, and to be honest, something I've done before!

Next up -  assorted blending colours, very colourful, but oh my goodness, very chaotic!

and then...

h-m-m-m- I think maybe red really is my new neutral colour!
So the big question now is
... do  I?
... or don't I?

*EDIT: my personal colour consultant {aka my daughter} requested a long distance pic
- so here you go twinkle!

Linking up with NTT over here at My Quilt Infatuation
and with 'oh scrap'  here
- where you can always find lots of scrappy inspiration!

Tuesday 19 January 2016

dining al fresco

Late last year, I finished my St Louis 16 patch in Kaffe, and have been waiting to find just the right home for it. Last Thursday we met up with friends for a bit of tree felling & lunch. "The boys" have known each other since those very first days at primary school, they were best man at each other's weddings, and these days we all get together once a month or so for a meal or concerts/show.

They were thrilled with my quilt!
We dined al fresco, my quilt looking right at home draped over their garden gate.
And then, right before the dessert, we had an uninvited guest joining us...

... it's ok, he's just going in for a closer inspection of the fabrics!

Many NZ weta's are quite large, they look similar to a grasshopper or cricket,
but their hind legs are big & spiny.
They are nocturnal and flightless.
They are found in forests, caves, shrub lands, and in our urban gardens.
This chap was about 4" long!

I love dining outdoors over summer, don't you? 
... hehe, but I do hope they shook the quilt out well before taking it back inside!

I'm so happy to have found a new home for this finished WiP
Linking up to really random Thursday for the first time
and with WiP Wednesday too 

Saturday 16 January 2016


I started out the New Year thinking that I too could have a word for 2016 ...

... maybe something like perhaps 'onethingatatime'
'cos I often feel I should try sticking to one thing, you know, from start to finish
- cut, piece, quilt, bind and hey presto, a finished quilt!

And for a while there I was going really well...

...but earlier this week I spotted my unfinished scrappy  'Greenfields' quilt, sitting on the shelf
with the binding all ready to go!
So one hot afternoon, with the fan blasting on 'high' in my sewing room,
I quickly sewed the binding on, later on out on the deck I hand stitched it down,
and in no time at all I had my first 'finish' of the year!

Linking up with tgiff over here this week

And then, just like that,
I was back into my lovely old habits flitting round from one thing to another,
just as the mood takes me!

I got busy with putting together a few orange peel 'filler' blocks

and in the cool of the evening, I started making some progress on my EPP 'clam shell' block
- both for my GT&SB quilt
Very pleased with how it's all coming together, slowly but surely!

*note to self: next time I do this... try a fabric glue stick!
{check out this great EPP tutorial}

and then today
I received some things in the mail...

Mostly Manor - Victoria Findlay Wolfe
Linking up with Molli here for Sunday stash #161

... and all too quickly I had forgotten all about my 'word- of- the- year'
and started dreaming up my next project using those yummy new fabrics!

a bit more #39
and you can see I'm in good company here {insert smiley face!}
- pop on over to read Gayle's post here at mangofeet

Wednesday 13 January 2016

an old favourite with a bit of a twist {a WiP}

Some days just call for some fabric play, yes? 

I'm always on the lookout for ways to use up my scrappy stash, and for a while now I've been contemplating trying out Sujata's quilt 'Organised Chaos' {see here}. It's a special twist on the old Kaleidoscope pattern. As usual, I didn't have an actual pattern, but I based my measurements on Ann's quilt, see her directions here. And luckily I already had the special ruler, which made it all very easy.

I wanted to make a quilt featuring Kathy Doughty's  fabrics released last year, Wandering Mind - a collection with uniquely different and modern designs. Not being a big fan of all-one-designer quilts, the challenge I set myself was to use the large bird print as my focus fabric and to combine my fat quarter designer bundle with assorted scrappy fabrics from my stash.

After looking at a few versions of the quilt online - this quilt here and this quilt here - I decided I needed to work within a few boundaries. 'Sewing scrappy' can sometimes end up sewing chaotic, so I selected a fairly restricted colour palette. I found by trial & error {and quite a bit of unpicking!} that value played a big part here, and that I also needed to add a few geometrics, spots and solids to help calm the chaos!

Here's a few progress pics...

- fingers crossed this will actually work!

-and look, making little flowers on some of the corners
{thanx Ann, Lee Ann & Sujata for all these extra ideas!}

- and then adding a few more of those corner triangles really got this quilt top spinning! 

It's a very clever variation, I love it!
And with so much to keep me focused, I'm just going to keep on playing with this for a bit longer!

Linking up this week with WiP  here at freshlypieced
- pop on over to see what everyone else has been busy sewing.

Sunday 10 January 2016

new year... new project... new book

It's always fun to start out the new year with a new scrappy project...

...and a new computer!
I made the big jump this week from XP  to windows 10, which all seems to be working!

...  but this is what has really kept me captivated so far this year

- my new book set in rural Sth Africa and such a good read!
Linking up to "oh scrap" over here
where you can guarantee finding lots of scrappy goodness to start the year off!

Wednesday 6 January 2016

handmade- at the beach

Some of my quilts have ended up down at the beach over the years. Apart from my most recent "trip around the world" quilt, all the other quilts were made way, way back, so they are "really old"! I grabbed a sunny day during the week and hung them all out on the washing line to air for a few hours...

... and then I looked around & started clicking... 

... all ready for a picnic in the shade

There are other little bits of handmade evidence
made by family scattered around the bach here at Waihi too, like ...

Mr D's mum's pottery

and cross stitch sun umbrella & seahorse made by my mum

It's so nice having my quilts down here too at the bach 
the old ...

                                                                                 or the new...

... they all get used! 

Happy Holidays!