Friday, December 3, 2010

A Workshop

I don't do workshops very often - I usually puzzle things out on my own but just sometimes it's nice to join in with others to learn something new.  This time I went with one of my groups to Mittagong, about 1-1/4 hours south of Sydney (depending on where you live) to Village Patchwork.  I have to say we had a fantastic day, doing both foundation piecing and curved piecing.  This is the block we did:

There were eight (yes!) sections to the central part of the block and then the four quarter-circles were added.  Mine was made pretty much according to the colours in the shop sample because I had only returned from Canberra the evening before and I knew I had a lot of the fabrics already.  The block did take a while to construct and if I want to make a quilt I have to do 12 more like this one.  If you want to see how I've progressed, I suggest you watch this space in no sooner than 12 months' time, LOL.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Another stocking

Here is the Christmas stocking which I've made for Henry's sister Jenna.  I think it turned out even better than the first one actually.

Another flaunt of a kind:  my DS and his lovely girl announced their engagement last weekend - it wasn't unexpected but still very exciting.  So there is going to be another wedding in the family in the fairly near future.  It's been a good year for us.

Friday, October 29, 2010

Christmas Stocking for Henry

Again, it's been a while, although I have been working on a few projects.  I've been doing Candied Hexagons with Kaffe Fassett fabrics as the feature but as I'm a glutton for punishment, they are all being done by hand.  Actually, they are great to do while watching TV or going to sewing/quilting group when you don't feel like lugging a sewing machine along.  Pictures of these to come later.

Another project has been a quilt for a child with cystic fibrosis which one of my groups do.  It's a simple design using three different 2-1/2" strips sewn together, then cut into squares and then HS triangles (half of which are cut on the opposite diagonal) and these are sewn together and arranged on point.  A very effective but simple block - again pics to come in a little while when I've done a bit more.  Sorry to tease!

What I have finished is a Christmas stocking for my now three months old today grandson, Henry and I have a photo of it!  Next up will be one for his 9 year old (half) sister which will be made in green.  I'm thinking though that the top needs to be of a different fabric - maybe felt? - but my DD is really happy with it as it is.  The reindeer is an Embroidery Library design - probably my fave place for designs.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

More about knitting than quilting

I've hardly sewn a stitch in weeks because, apart from the excitement of Henry's birth, I have spent the cold evenings knitting rather than sewing.  I am not making anything for him for now because it is now spring (although it will be cooler for a bit longer where he lives), so I am now busy knitting for him for next winter and the photo below shows what I have been up to.  It's a very cute little jacket with a hood from a Sirdar pattern which I picked up at the Darling Harbour quilt and craft show in June, weeks before he was born.  Lucky that I knew he was going to be a boy!

My DD has been visiting for a few days with Henry while her husband has been in Cairns for work and we have had a lovely time together.  It was all the more wonderful having Henry here.  He is now five weeks old and already changing.  New Nanna has been working her new camera overtime taking all sorts of photos of Little Man.  Here are a couple but I promise to (try to) limit the photos in future! 

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Meet my grandson, Henry!

Oh my gosh, has it really been that long since I last wrote something?  Very slack of me but a LOT has happened.  OK, so I worked for two months marking tests and while it was pretty intensive work, it was hardly newsworthy, although the money was nice, LOL.  I was almost at the end of that long slog when I got The Phone Call on 29th July from DD saying she had gone into labour a week early, so luckily I was able to down tools (pencil actually) and be on the road to Canberra within hours.   Unfortunately for DD, it was going to be a lot longer before little Henry would make his appearance as finally, it was necessary for a Caesarean.  It was all rather traumatic at the time but as soon as we saw our little boy, we were all in love with this darling baby.  He weighed 3180g (7lb) and to me he looked so tiny as my own children were quite big babies at birth.

He is my first grandchild and I am besotted!  Just wish I could see him every day!  I have been lucky though as I stayed to help out and consequently I got lots of cuddles!  Here he is:

Henry's quilt (as in my last post) is not yet complete but with the size it has become, it will be good for when he goes into a bed, LOL.  However, I did finish the one in aqua and white with the chenille and that one is waiting in his cot for him.  Otherwise I spent much of the winter knitting all sorts of things for him.  My sister got very keen too and knitted the blue jacket he is wearing above - it's part of a set. 

Friday, May 21, 2010

At last something to show

I started out so well with this blog that I'm sure anyone who has been reading it has probably given up on me by now.  Well, I have something to show that follows on from my last long ago post and that is the grandbaby quilt.  Here it is.....ta da......The Cot Quilt Top:

I am very pleased with it although I notice two blocks which perhaps should not have been put together - wonder whether I should change them.  I originally planned to set the blocks straight but suddenly had inspiration and set them on point.  Now they look like they're floating which is nice. 

As you can see, it's not a baby quilt as such but we're thinking the little man will be able to use it on his eventual Big Boy's bed.

Now to sandwich and quilt it - where are the quilt fairies?  They are real, aren't they?  I will be starting some fairly intensive work next week which will continue almost until our little boy's due date and I know that, as past experience tells me, I'm going to be too tired most evenings to do much.  That's where the knitting will come in.  I've been furiously clicking the needles and have four garments and a cap to show for it.  More pics may come in a few days.

That's not all - I have another quilt to sandwich and quilt - that's the chenille and blue one I showed ages ago plus a charity quilt to make.  Just need more energy and less sleep!


Monday, April 12, 2010

Back to some sewing

Oh my gosh, has it really been that long since I posted?  Life has been busy since the end of February and it has included a 4-week visit by friends from Holland and a lovely 2-week cruise around New Zealand.  I know, tough life, but someone's got to do it :-).  Following our friends' departure for home, I was off down the Hume Highway to Canberra to be present at my DD's second ultrasound at which time there was the distinct possibility we would find out the sex of the coming babe, and find out we did!  No pics this time but we are 99% sure we are going to be welcoming a little BOY into the family in less than four months!!  One very thrilling thing to have happened this past weekend is that I actually felt and saw him move!

So Nanna-to-be has been gathering fabric together (plus knitting madly) to make another quilt, this time for The Quilt.  The colours have been chosen according to the nursery colour scheme which was always going to be cream, smokey brown and green with either blue or pink to be added as a focus colour.  It's not going to be a 'traditional quilt' as I find myself moving away somewhat from that style, and besides, it has to be quick-to-make with other commitments I have coming up over the next few months.

These are some of the fabrics chosen but I may add a bit more blue.

Here are some of the first blocks.  On looking at them I am thinking they won't look so much a baby quilt as an ordinary quilt but I can't change my idea now or Baby might be three years old if I start making an applique quilt.  DD wants me to make a floor quilt (that will be three) so perhaps I can go to town there with a little 'boy' quilt. 

Until next time,

Sunday, February 21, 2010

At last, a finished quilt!

This is my latest effort so as you can see, I do sometimes finish a quilt!  This has been largely made amidst great preparations for overseas visitors and a holiday but it is finished, right down to the label.  This quilt is not for me or anyone I know:  it is a charity quilt for a women's refuge.  A group I belong to makes quilts for the children of women who must take refuge somewhere safe.

Again it is the Continuous Stairs design but how different it is with a complete change of colour and colour layout!  It is very bright as I wouldn't ordinarily use so much yellow but I am sure some child will like it.  Quilting has been very basic (in-the-ditch) just with stitching down the 'stairs'.

NB.  The baby quilt with the chenille as in the previous post has come a bit further and is now a top and I'm rather pleased with it but I don't think I will be sewing chenille again in a hurry!  My sewing room looked like snow had hit it for a while!


Friday, February 5, 2010

First Baby Quilt

Now that I've announced our coming grandchild :-), I thought I would flaunt my first item of sewing.  I had the kit for this quilt in the stash for a couple of years or more and pulled it out the other day, thinking that now was as good a time as any to start baby sewing, although it isn't going to be my piece de resistance.  Luckily though, I didn't choose pink - not that we know the sex of the unborn babe yet, although I am guessing it's going to be a boy.  I am sure though that bubs will need more than one quilt.  I haven't got very far with it - I think it will look good when finished but I'm not enjoying working with chenille and bias cuts.  I have, however, found that the walking foot makes working with chenille a little easier.  Hopefully the next time you see this quilt it will be no longer a Work in Progress.

Close up of the block.  The two aqua and white fabrics are alternated in each block.

Having a few little teething problems with Windows 7 in my new computer so it's a typed signature again.


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Very special flaunt

This flaunt is the reason for the Very Important Quilt I mentioned last week, in case you haven't worked it out.  We are going to be grandparents for the very first time, late July/early August, courtesy of our DD and DSIL!  Here is the very first indication that Bubs was on the way:

Yesterday was the first ultrasound which was at 13 weeks and yes, it's definitely a baby!  I am quite surprised that such a tiny being who is just 6 cm from crown to rump can be seen this clearly.  We are all very excited at the news (needless to say) and so is Jenna who will be big half-sister to Bubs (what do we call him or her at this stage??). 

Went out shopping this morning and bought the beginnings of Baby's 'glory box' (some washers and burp cloths) as well as looking at prams and strollers.  I had not looked at such items very closely for years and wow, how they've changed!  Lots of sewing and knitting ahead for me this winter - can't wait.  Actually, I couldn't wait and already am well on the way to having a little jumper made.  The parents intend to find out the baby's gender later which I am happy about because then I can get into some colours!

All very exciting (have I said that yet?) for this first-time grandmother-to-be.

Daphne (not on my usual computer so don't have my signature handy)

Saturday, January 16, 2010

A long break between flaunts

As I said, it's been a long break and even then I couldn't have this posted for yesterday - very slack.  Anyway, here's what I've been up to in the last week.  I found an interesting but simple design called Continuous Steps on Quilting About which kind of appealed and what was more, I could try it out with my Japanese prints (the colourful kind, that is) before perhaps using the design to make a VIQ (Very Important Quilt) soon.  More about that in the weeks to come.  It will need a couple of borders to make it a useful size though.

I am happy enough with it and you might notice I've tried a bit of colourwash technique with it.  However, if I make the VIQ in this design I think I will organise the fabrics differently.

BTW, Oscar (my dear old 15 years old ginger boy) even approves.  I found him quite settled on it in the dark one night where I had it laid out on the floor in my sewing room!  He left some of his personal embellishments on it which, sad to say, I had to brush off it next day.

Now for a MINI-TUTORIAL:  Last week I watched Jinny Beyer on a free video from Alex Anderson and Ricky Tims and saw the simplest idea for getting seams to meet exactly.  If yours already meet exactly then you don't have to read this but this is for the benefit of those like me who battle to get seams meeting properly.  I tried it and it works beautifully!

First, with seams pointing in opposite directions, butt the seams together and place a pin 1/16" each side of the vertical seam.  You can check how the seams will look by opening out the two pieces.  If they don't meet, then try again! 

Now stitch right up to the first pin, holding it at right angles to the stitching.  Remove the pin and do a couple more stitches and then remove the second pin.  Continue stitching.

Voila!!  The seams meet and there is no frustrating frogging (unpicking).  BTW, in case you are wondering why there are different fabrics in the pics, the last two turned out fuzzy and I had to do new ones! 

Let me know whether this has helped you.  I've been doing PW for years and tried a number of different ways of getting the seams meeting.  Very simple but it was a lightbulb moment for me.  Maybe I'm just simple ;-).