Welcome to my blog about my quilting journey! I started quilting in 2006 with a quilt of my own design which started as a cushion cover and ended up as a single bed sized quilt! Now I'm totally hooked....maybe obsessed is a better word for it.

Sunday, 30 June 2013

Sunday Stash

A few weeks back I was lucky enough to win another layer cake in a giveaway on Carin's blog, Ullharvan to celebrate having 25,000 visitors to her blog.  I have been on a lucky streak lately so I'm enjoying unexpected parcels of fabric arriving!  This was my third win this year so I'm pretty sure that will be the end of it, these things generally happening in threes!

My parcel arrived this week and was stuffed to the gills with goodies, not just the layer cake.

I met (in internet land) Carin (who lives in Sweden) through Quilting Block Swaps Australia as she was my swap partner a few months back and when sending my block through the mail that month she sent me one of the lovely Daim choccies as well. They are lovely and so I was happily surprised when Carin popped another one into this parcel too - yum! (I may well be heading to Ikea to stock up on these!)  The other surprise all prettily tied up in pink was this very cute little owl pincushion.

 Too cute don't you think?

 On to the fabric, this lovely layer cake, Quilt Blocks from Moda.

 Some lovely fabric and colours in this layer cake:

Thank you so much Carin, I already have an idea for this one so will keep you posted!

Linking up with Fiona at Finding Fifth for this week's Sunday Stash.

Thanks for visiting!

Friday, 21 June 2013

And Now for Something Completely Different....Another Pillow!

Last week you might have seen that I whipped up a couple of pillows for my boys:
When my hubby got home they were showing him and I heard him exclaim (in jest) 'where's mine?'  Aha, I thought, good idea, so this week I decided to make him one too!  He loves native Australian finches (and other birds) but a big love since childhood has been lizards so a gecko seemed to be the perfect choice for a pillow for him.  Since it would live on our bed it needed to be blue and I had some great Aboriginal dot fabric in a dark blue I had bought for another project, so perfect!

I was in a bit of a rush to get it finished before he got home (lets just say there were quite a few interruptions late in the day) so I didn't quilt it, which I think would have looked better.  I may or may not decide to do something later but its made up now and harder to do so it probably won't happen!  I had the stripy fabric which toned in really well with the darker fabric so that went on the back as well.

The dark fabric is a bit hard to see in detail (it was late afternoon by the time I took the photos so the light was a bit dodgy) so here are some close ups.

Those little gecko toes were a challenge to applique!

All in all, I'm pretty happy with it, although I should probably have cut the white a bit narrower in hindsight.  It looks pretty good with my Star Value pillow too:

So now everyone has a cushion, I think I'm off the hook for a while.  Although come to think of it I do have another insert in a different shape that needs a cover......hmmmm......

Thanks for visiting,

Sunday, 16 June 2013

Sunday Stash

I have been trying to behave myself this year and stay away as much as possible from online fabric shops so haven't had a whole lot to share.  Last month, however, as part of Kristy at Quiet Plays And Sew On BOM I was lucky enough to win a layer cake from The Fat Quarter Shop.  Unfortunately when it didn't arrive after 4 weeks it turned out there was an error when they put in my postcode and it never got sent. Sigh!

The good news is though that it finally arrived this week (amazing it only took 4 days once I followed it up) so I can join up with Sunday Stash which is being hosted this week by Allison at Dreaming in Patchwork.

I should say this is probably not a group of fabrics I would have chosen for myself but I have to say there are some in there I quite like.

I love the camera fabric and the large spots which come in several different colours.

I'm really not a 'low volume' kind of girl so its not something I'm drawn to but I also won some fabric recently on another BOM and it too is low volume so I think the quilting world is trying to tell me something!

I'll have to think for a while on what I'm going to use this layer cake for.  I haven't used one before and I was surprised at how much fabric you get.  I'm thinking that if I throw some grey and maybe orange solids into the mix it might just speak to me!

Off to link up!

Thursday, 13 June 2013

A Bit of Pillow Talk (or Cushion Chat)!

Well this month the lucky number for the 13 UFO's in 2013 sewalong at Marti's blog 52 Quilts in 52 Weeks was number 9.

Off I went to delve in my box of UFO's and the lucky project this month was to make a pillow for my younger son, Simon, from some penguin fabric I bought a couple of years ago. He has a soft spot for penguins and I remember I bought the two penguin fabrics for a song on equilter.com in a clearance sale.  Given that he is now 17 (almost 18) I checked to make sure he didn't think the fabric was too juvenile!  He has a great sense of humour and still liked the fabric so yesterday and finally got my stuff together and made it.

This was one of those jobs that has been on the 'to do' list in my head for a while but for some reason I just never started it.  I picked up a couple of cushion inserts at the beginning of the year so I would be ready to go when its number came up.  Well, as is often the way with projects you put off for a long time, it came together in no time flat and here is the finished pillow:

Aren't they a cute lot of penguins? They're cheeky looking with a definite glint in their eyes! I still have a lot left, not sure what I'll do with it but, hey, its not like its going to go off right?! Anyway, its hard to see but the orange fabric at the top and bottom is actually rows of penguins as well, albeit quite small.  I've used that fabric on the back as well (which I neglected to take a photo of but is a simple envelope opening).

I chose to use the blue fabric specifically because it is used on the border of his bed quilt so at least there is some connection between the two.  That and its a fabric I have a soft spot for (not much left now though).

I have a soft spot for Simon's quilt as it was my very first - it started as a cushion cover to see if I liked the process and after quite a long (or rather LOOOONG) time it finally got finished. Its all paper pieced and I quilted it all myself.  I learnt a lot in the process! (There is a very early blog post about it here if you're interested but be warned its lacking a bit in interest!)

Well seeing as that pillow was so easy I decided that in the interests of fairness I would pull out another UFO and get stuck into that.  Why you ask? (or maybe not ask!) Well the other UFO was to make a pillow for my oldest son, Kieran, so being as I was in the pillow frame of mind I thought best to strike while the iron was hot! (Remember I said I bought a couple of inserts?!)

When I made Kieran's bed quilt (Fortune Dragon Quilt), I made 5 Chinese symbols but ended up only using 4 of them.  My loose plan was always to make a pillow using the last one but after working on the quilt for at least 2 years, and thinking 'dragons' for a number of years before, I was kind of over the whole theme!  Don't get me wrong, I LOVE the way this quilt turned out, but I just didn't want to look at the fabric anymore for a while!

However, yesterday its day finally came.  As luck would have it my son was actually home so I was able to consult with him about preferred fabrics (of the two boys he is definitely the fussiest!) and away I went.  In an embarrassingly short amount of time his pillow was also complete.  I think stuffing the insert into it took longer than making it!  He was very happy with the result though (and so was I).

This one ended up with another favourite fabric - the deep red in the narrow border above. It is just the best red fabric and I really wish it was still around.  I'm rationing the tiny bit I have left now!

This is the fabric Kieran chose for the back (as I didn't have enough of the black with red characters). This ties in nicely with the quilt too as its in the border (in very tiny pieces) around the dragon.  It felt nice and flamey for a dragon quilt!

It won't actually end up on the bed though as Kieran has couch in his room so that's where it is now but it does all tie in nicely.

So two UFO's for this month.  You know the best bit about finishing these two pillows? I don't have to keep moving the two pillow inserts to get to my sewing machine all the damn time!

I love Marti's UFO sew along. Its so much easier just knowing that you're going to get at least one project done and dusted each month, whereas a list just feels so daunting and you don't know where to start.
Off to pick another UFO to take this one's spot - Yay!

Thanks for visiting,

Monday, 10 June 2013

And Sew On - June Block

Another great block from Kristy at Quiet Play again this month.  I'm loving this BOM!

This month's block is 'A Stitch in Time'.  The block this month had a few different pieces but really wasn't an overly tricky block to put together.  You did need to think carefully about fabrics though.  I decided to include a couple of my favourite fabrics in the hexies but one is really a bit close to the blue I used for the table to be as effective as I would like.  I also had a bit of a hiccup with my saucer for my teacup.  The fabric I used didn't end up in quite the place I'd planned so I ended up with white on the edges of my saucer which made it look an odd shape.  

I thought it would still look okay and made the whole thing and then overnight decided I couldn't live with it and unpicked it a bit and put a new saucer on it:

I'm happier with it but its a bit wonky now and the block ended up a bit smaller than it should but close enough for me!  I ended up embroidering an eye on my needle to make it look more like a needle.  I haven't quite decided whether I will embroider some thread as well or just leave it.

I thought I'd see how everything was coming together and put all six blocks together.  The photo is at my usual slightly dodgy standard but you get the idea!

Pretty happy with them so far, looking forward to the last 3!

Thanks for visiting,

Friday, 7 June 2013

A Bit of Star Value

In my happy wanderings around blogland one day I came across this  tutorial by Melissa at Happy Quilting.  I liked the look of it so I printed it out and set it aside on the 'one day' pile and a surprisingly short time later I picked it up again.  I had a bit of spare time at the end of last month having been a smarty pants and finished all my projects for that month so I had a bit of an archaeological dig in my scraps to see if I could make a block or two.  I chose the 12" block option as I figured I had a lot of 2" scrap squares already cut to choose from and quite a few charm squares I could cut into 4. Easy peasy I thought!

First problem was a distinct lack of grey fabrics, and when I say lack of I really mean total absence.  Luckily Spotlight helped me out by having a stocktake sale at just the right time so I popped down and picked out a couple of fat quarters and a couple of bolts of French themed greys.  The best bit was finding out when I got to the cutting table that the bolts I had picked (which showed as $12.95 per metre) ended up at $4 per metre!  Now that's my price range - so a metre of each came home with me to help with the grey hole in my stash!

While the blocks aren't really difficult, they are time consuming I found but I love the way they look!

I wanted to use scraps I had so I mixed whites with low value creams (they really aren't quite as dark as they appear in this photo).  I do think it would look better with just white for contrast though.

A wiser soul than myself would have cleverly made the larger option (cutting instructions are given for 5 different sized blocks up to 28"!) but the reward is the pattern which appears when you put the blocks together.  I figured the smaller the blocks, the more pattern you get.  Here are my 4 blocks all together:

Thanks Melissa for sharing a great tutorial.  I'm putting these away for a little bit until the next time I have a combination of free time and plenty of scraps.  It won't be a quilt I'll finish in a hurry but I'm looking forward to seeing it come together eventually!

Thanks for visiting!

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

QBSA June Block (and a bit more!)

I can't believe we're in June already, this year is spinning by way too fast for me!

My swap partner for my Quilting Block Swap Australia monthly swap in June is Michell from New Zealand and she requested an Ohio Star all in the same red on a white solid background. I already had the pattern ready to go as last month I had to make an Ohio Star too!

After having a dig around in my stash I discovered my reds are decidedly denuded! So with only 2 to choose from I decided in the end to just use both and make two blocks.  As this block is a new selection for Michell I figured it would get her off to a good start!

I decided to ask for a different block starting this month for my QBSA as I thought I had enough blocks to make a quilt out of my previous selection.  I spread the blocks I had out in a square design first:

I felt it wasn't very exciting and so decided to try for a layout with them on point:

Much better! Not quite the right number of blocks though so I got busy with my graph paper and played around with a couple of layouts and worked out that to do what I wanted I needed at least two more blocks so I whipped up these two lovelies!

I haven't quite nailed down how I will resolve the triangular areas on the side of my design (which I'm not sharing yet!) but I'll either add plain fabric or make up some half blocks as well.  I'm thinking I'll probably border all the blocks in a variety of contrasting bright fabrics and perhaps sash and bind them in black as well.  However, its not a priority and a new month has started so I have other fish to fry, so to speak! (at least until this month's projects are done and dusted!).

Thanks for visiting,