Sunday, November 28, 2010

House Hunting

I've been reading lots of Thanksgiving posts this week. We don't celebrate the holiday here in Australia but it's been a nice reminder to be thankful for all wonderful things in my life. One thing I started this year and am so thankful I did is my blog. I've met so many lovely and inspiring people who are so generous with encouragement and suggestions and friendly words. Thank You bloggy buddies!!

Beth at Love Laugh Quilt has expessed the similar sentiments in a poetic post using a neighbourhood as a metaphor. It's really worth popping over for a read. Beth has also come up with a fun idea of organising some blogland quilts. To be part of the fun you just have to make a 12" (unfinished size) block of a house and include your blog name on it, or if you don't have a blog your name will do. She'll collect the blocks and organise them into lots of 9 or 12 ( depending how many she gets) and pick some random winners for the blocks to go to. The recipients then get to make them into quilts.
You only have to do one block to join in... I got a little carried away and made a few extra, I was having too much fun!!
I haven't written my name on the blocks yet. I forgot to do so before I took photos. Silly me, I'll do it as soon as I've finished writing this.

This is my first ever house block, ever!

I had fun fussy cutting! Note the blue Daisy fabric.

I loosened up a bit with this block.

Couldn't resist a scrappy house.

This next one isn't your usual house block but it's got lots of little houses on it.
Including one little house that says "cake"!

I found some friendly saying fabric in my cupboard.
This next one is a Blue Mountain Daisy block. Lots of Blue Mountains and a little blue daisy on the house.
My blocks seemed to get more and more abstract. I think this is my favourite block. That Ring a Rosie fabric by Michael Miller is just so sweet! I've had it for ages but this is the first opportunity to cut into it.
This little saying makes me laugh. I just hope a vegetarian dosen't receive this block.

The other big thing I'm thankful GBF and I did this year was take the plunge and move to the Blue Mountains for a tree change. We've been here for a year now and love it so much that we've just bought a house!!! Yippee!!! We're here to stay!!! How Exciting!!!

Here's our castle. GBF has put a 70's tint on the photo in keeping with the era.

Here's the back yard!!
I'm sure fairies live in this garden!!!

We won't get to meet them until we move in the New Year but that's okay, more time to get things sorted and packed. Maybe a few more house blocks...


Monday, November 22, 2010

Border Lines

The thing about fussy cutting and foundation piecing is that you can end up with a pile of scraps. I'm not saying that's a bad thing...quite the contrary.
Just grab and sew, add a few other scraps from the basket, maybe a few matching fQs from the stash
It's so nice to have a holiday from measuring and not worry about how pointy my points are.
So I've sewed and sewed and sewed lots and lots of scraps.
And come up with borders for the dahlia quilt. It's not all sewn together yet. I just roughly pinned it onto my design wall in time to get the last few moments of photogenic light.
What do you think? Too crazy or not crazy enough?

Saturday, November 20, 2010

In Full Bloom

Hello sunshine!!
These lovely Coreopsis flowers are really putting a show on for Spring here in mountains. I guess they are probably classified as a weed but gosh they're so cheery, and pretty as they wave around in the wind.

Down in Sydney's Circular Quay Jacaranda trees are filling the sky with magnificent branches of purple blooms.
The shade of purple is just so right...

...and almost electric when combined with such a verdant green.
I love the way the flowers create big purple carpets underneath the trees.

This Ibis seems to like them too.
One of the things that make Jacarandas special to me is that they flower around my birthday. I couldn't ask for a better gift from Mother Nature. Well, except perhaps the cocoa bean.


Sunday, November 14, 2010

Cutting No Corners

Hello! I feel like I've been absent from the Blogosphere for ages!!
You know how it goes - if you work too hard you end up getting sick. You can tell I'm not well when I can't find the energy to sew a stitch, but when I don't have the strength to even leave comments on my friends blogs you know I'm really sick. It's okay because I'm on the mend now so I hope you'll excuse me blowing my nose every five minutes while I'll get on with my show and tell.

Last weekend I had a play with this little toy- a Ratchet Rotary Compass Cutter.

It cuts the most perfect circles from 2 - 8.5 inches ( though I jiggled a few screws, turned the compass point around and was able to get a 9.5 circle)

Just for the sake of playing around I attempted to sew a circle into another piece of fabric by cutting a circle half an inch bigger. I didn't pin it and just used my quarter inch foot. It almost worked except for the pucker on the right hand side. I'm curious to have another go one day with my Curve Master Foot, and maybe a bit of spray starch to steady the fabric a bit, but at the time I was distracted by other ideas and ended up playing in my scrap baskets - to see what this little test block grew into pop over to Basket Full of Scraps.

The main reason I pulled my Ratchet Rotary Compass Cutter ( that sounds so wonderfully important) was to do a bit of fussy cutting. No more trying to line a bowl up against little marks on the fabric, or cutting freezer paper circles but then after ironing finding that they've moved half an inch. I just stuck my compass pin into the center of the design, did a swivel with a flourish and hey presto a perfect circle...

and a perfect center for my dahlia quilt!!

You've got to love Jennifer Paganelli's Sis Boom fabrics for fussy cutting, so many beautiful shapes and patterns that are perfect for featuring. Beautiful!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Smiley Day

I declare today Smiley Day!!

I'm smiling because I've had such a fun week with the Bloggers Quilt Festival!

I've seen so many amazing, wonderful quilts and enjoyed the moving, funny and interesting stories behind them. I've realised I have very broad tastes- A few of my favourites ( Am I allowed to have lots and lots of favourites?) range from

I've been amazed and touched by all the lovely comments everyone has left me.
To all of you, Thank You from the bottom of my heart!!

Isn't it wonderful how when you smile at the world...

It smiles back!!

I'm also smiling because it's the weekend!! It may be a cold, wet and grey day but hey it's the perfect weather to go into my sewing room and sew up a storm! No more dilly-dallying- my sewing machine is calling me.

Have a wonderful Smiley Day!!


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