31 December 2011

so long, farewell.............

Words are not flowing today, so here's a few of my favourite photos

Quilt for my nieces daughter

George - just watching

Vienna market
Beyond the sea

My new summer outfit


Just a small selection of tommies off our 28 plants!

2011 Goodie swap

Flowers from the garden

My first ever quilt

Dynobrani 20111

Sweet Potatoes chitting

African flowers

My effort for the Modern Christmas Table runner

Newly painted lounge

MCTRS received

Pips quilt for newly arrived Ruairi

Christmas tree (no!  It's not is it?
Teaching friends to crochet

Glad to be home

Thanks to all who joined me during 2011.  Hope you'll come back for more ramblings in 2012.  Happy New Year!

30 December 2011

Bloggers Choice Fat Quarter Bundle

Like just about everyone else, I couldn't resist making up my own fat quarter bundle for the competition over at Quokka quilts.  My first thought was that I would fry my brain, trawling through the Fat Quarter Shop, somehow narrowing it down to 15 fabrics, and then trying to make a mosaic.  I tried to join Pinterest but they very kindly put me on their waiting list.  What's all that about?  Sorry pal, moved on.  

Anyway, long story, short, etc,  Susan (Canadian Abroad) put me right and approximately 3 hours later I was just about ready to go when I realised I'd played the numpty card.  Not written down any of the fabrics had I?  So another hour later, here it is in it's full glory.

And the line up is
1.   Primativa Plum and Lavender Wavy Reed Stripes - SKU# 5528-P
2.  Stella Light Orange Solid - SKU# STELLA-SOLID-LTORANGE
3. Pear Tree Olive and Cream Allover Eggs - SKU# 5554-E
4.Curio Asparagus Camellia - SKU# 30274-15
5.Bohemian Soul Terra Tribal - S KU# BOH-506
6.Michael Miller Jewel Cotton Couture Solid - SKU# SC5333-JEWE-D
7.Ooh La La Lime Coeur De Fleurs -  SKU# DC5196-LIME-D
8.  Hyperreal Garden Cashmere Illusion - SKU# HG-7408
9.Modernology Deep Posh Florets - SKU# MO-3808
10. Kona Cotton Lime - SKU# K001-1192
11. Power Pop Strawberry Big Star - SKU# PWJM056-STRAW
12.Domestic Bliss Eggplant Beaded Curtain - SKU# 18077-11
14.  Power Pop Strawberry Pinkerton - SKU# PWJM057-STRAW
15.  Girls World Vibe Magenta Carrie - SKU# PWJP058-MAGEN

I would also like to thank all of the other fabrics that auditioned and didn't make it through to the final 15.  I'm not sure that those solids are the right colour in real life, but they do the job on screen.

In order to get me through this, I had to FOCUS.   So, I took the opportunity to gather together some fabrics to make that all elusive "Quilt for my own bed".   You know, the one you're always going to make, but never seem to do because your too busy making for other people, or the lastest bee or swap.

Here's the curtain material in my bedroom. 

This was a good find.  Czechs don't do curtains much - it's all nets (aaarggghhhhh), shiney stuff from the seventies and venetian blinds.   I have the blinds, but I still like curtains to soften the room - I know I don't have to explain this to most of you, but in our house, the word curtain is always followed by an explanation of why we need them  It's just habit.   One day it will sink in! I hope I've chosen fabrics for the quilt that really blend in with the curtains.   And if I won (no chance - I can't even win a random draw, let alone one that invloves a modicum of skill)  I truly will make this quilt. Honestly.  Just after I've finished the 4 baby quilts I have to do, the two I have promised for friends .............................................

Good luck to all the other contestants, but honestly, mine is going to win!

29 December 2011

So that's that then

Hi folks.  Sorry for the long absence - truthfully I didn't feel much like spending time on the laptop over the Christmas period.   Could be that my nearest and dearest has dragged me out for long dog walks every day.

The one on Christmas day (after a bottle of champers for breakfast - between us) was a killer.   We've had a lovely Christmas - very quiet but that's fine with us.   We had our pork pie and champagne for breakfast,

then opened our pressies.  Santa brought me a little iron, just for me in my sewing room, and a new breadmaker.  The old one had burnt out it's circuit boards or something, and hadn't produced an edible loaf for ages, so I was rather pleased with it's replacement.  I've made one loaf so far, and it was perfect.   The lamb dinner, made by Gordon, was splendid, although we both agreed it was as nice, if not better, heated up with bubble anad sqeak next day.  (Bubble and Squeak is a fry up of all your left over vegetables - I think every country has it under a variety of different names).  I took a picture of my table, with it's new table runner, just waiting for the food.

I really must get rid of those crappy blue table mats - maybe I could make some new ones

And you'll be pleased to hear, not a drop of gravy was spilt on it.

We also had the ritual game of monopoly which I lost spectacularly in record time.   It's not fair, I never landed on any good ones.   We always remember my mum when we play Monopoly.  She hated it with a passion after she lost early on in a game that went on for hours!

I managed to get a bit of sewing done, but not a lot.  I also took the time last night to tidy my sewing room a bit.   My hand made pressies for my friend and her children went down well, although the head band is, as I thought, way too big and is back in the workshop for repair!

It was all too much for some of us  though

I'm off now to try and make a mosaic for the Blogger Choice Fat quarter bundle.   I could be gone some time, as they say!

24 December 2011

Itttt's Chriissssstmaaassss

Well it's almost here folks.  I do hope you have all calmed down a little now from the frantic preparations.  I must admit we don't have this pre-Christmas frenzy at Quiltova Towers.  Mainly because we have no kids and are away from the family.   Also we don't do many Christmas pressies in our respective families, because we decided years ago that we all spend way too much money on something people really don't want anyway.  There's still quite a respectable pile under the tree though.   We don't make things like mince pies and Christmas pud, because we can't get the ingredients, so we got some from M  & S weeks ago.   And there is a fairly well stocked freezer with a lovely piece of lamb in it, waiting to be defrosted today.   No turkey this year for the first time in years.  And a pork pie which my S-I-L brough over in November ready for breakkie tomorrow with a glass of bubbly.

I did make a few gifts for my friend Lenni and her children.   I know she really appreciates home-made gifts so I made her this ruched head band.  She has one which she has worn to death so hopefully this will be OK although I think it's a bit big and has too much fabric in it.  I think it works better with longer hair - you won't see me modelling it because it just looks stupid on me

It was really nice to do some ordinary sewing for a change, not quilting.  I have plans to make a top and skirt over the holiday period.  Well, at least I made the plan

No. 1 son loves anything do do with space, so I've made him a rockety cushion.

Details fo the tail flames

Rings around the planet
And finally I didn't make a presie for the little girl.  We were out for the day last week in Znojmo and I discovered another little patchwork exhibition.   I bought this little purse for her.

Before wrapping it up, I have taken a template so that I could make another one.  So these  pressies have gone off to their new homes - they will either be loved or destoryed within minutes (they are a little wild these children!)

The weather here is miserable.  It was foggy and mizzly yesterday, and looks like it is slightly less foggy and more mizzly today.   We're off for a nice (? in this weather?) walk with the dogs, then hunker down I think.  I hope you all have a wonderful Christmas with family and friends - you deserve it after all your hard work!


19 December 2011

A bit of this and a bit of that

Although there has been no evidence of it on my blog, I have actually been doing a fair bit of sewing recently.   Towards the end of last week I finished my boys Pips quilt, which I am really pleased with and even Gordon thinks it's nice.

I did a simple quilted line across the diagonals, and then a diamond pattern on the border.  This was a template in a book I have, but instead of using this, I measured it out, and did a "dot-to-dot" with my dissappearing pen.  This is the first time I've been brave enough to use it because it's purple, and it's very scary drawing all over your nice white fabric in purple felt tip pen!   But it did fade.

This label took me forever to do.  I had to have at least 1000 goes at doing the writing before I could get it right. 

I eventually got a good one, then Gordon told me you couldn't see it in white and I should do it again in a bolder colour..   Reluctantly, I had to agree.   This time the bloody machine decided to throw a wobbly and sewed a bit knot.      

Then I had to get a bone shape off the internet  becauses I can't draw for toffee.  And then I had to try several options for sewing it on.    Actually I reverted to my test piece which I did for my Christmas table runner.  This is becoming a work of art in itself!  I actually like the process of doing a practice piece.  I rarely end up doing what I first thought of.
He has got a point about not being able to read the writing!
Anyway we finally decided on a blue blanket stitch, which looks pretty good I think.  You can still see the purple pen which I used to keep the lines straight, but I hope it will fade.

The only thing I don't have is a name for it.   I'm going to send it off after Christmas now - I don't want it to get lost in the pre-Christmas post.

What else?   Oh yes.  Remember this?

The Dresden That Was Bigger Than Anyone Expected.   Having cocked up the corners and the quilting, I decided to make it into a cushion (or pillow).  I failed miserably to find a circular cushion inner, so about 6 weeks ago I made one myself.   Finally I thought it was about time I finished it, so came up with an amazingly brilliant plan to do two half dresdens either side of a central zip.

Oops - got the wrong photo - never mind eh.  She's cute - she can stay

Get the idea?   Well it was at this point I decided this was a really naff idea and went out and bought some green polka dot fabric instead!   To be continued................

Then I've been playing with a bit of paper piecing

It doesn't look it but that centre piece is blue.   I can't reveal any more just yet as it's secret squirrel..

And finally I started a cushion for my friends little boy who is a space cadet.

It needs a few planets and stars around it, and a few jets coming out of the engine, and bobs your uncle.  This one has the big Thumbs Up from Gordon!

I have also cut up some Melly and Me to make a quilt for one of the many babies due next year.

I'm going to make a D9P with them, keeping the blue as the centre block all the way through.   I don't really know any more than that at the moment.  (Just noticed the trivet on the picture - God I'm rubbish at this)

What I'm actually trying to do here, is to produce as many UFO's as poss before Christmas so that I can join in with Rhonda's  2012 finish along!   I don't have many UFOs (well not sewing ones, plenty of crochet, knitting and embroidery) and I didn't want to be left out in the cold!

Well must go now - line dancing tonight. It's been a long post.  Well done for getting to the end.!