Friday, September 21, 2012

Friendly Friday- Joan - Gbfs Mum

I'm doing my happy Friday dance!!This weeks guest isn't a blogger but she's a very special friend and a faithful follower of my blog and she always listens as I chat about all my bloggy friends... It's GBF's mum!!! If Joan had a blog it would be all about yummy food, wonderful travels, fun family times and fabulous thrifty finds. She would have sneak peeks of  creative projects because they're often gifts, You'll find out more as you read on...

Hi Joan, tell us a bit about yourself?
I am in my seventies, and I live in a retirement village in Victoria with my lovely  "GBF" (the older version).

How long have you been quilting?
I tried to make a quilt many years ago, and it still sits in the cupboard. I do look at it occasionally - maybe one day!!

What other crafts do you do? I have always 'fiddled' with crafty things, I think this comes from my mother who always had busy hands. For years, I sewed clothes for kids, and ballet dresses and costumes for performers in our lives. I knit when we travel, and as we travel quite a bit, I knit quite a bit - mostly small bears for either Red Cross or the Salvation Army - small is easy to manage in the car

What do you love about getting crafty? It is fun to give shape and meaning to bits and pieces. Traditionally, my GBF and I have made things for Christmas presents, sometimes producing things that will be loved, other times making our family and friends roll their eyes and wonder where they will hide their latest gift. The gifts are always made with love as the major ingredient.

What's your favourite crafting tool or accessory? The unpicker seems to always feature in my projects, so I guess it could be called a favourite!

Do you listen to music while you sew/knit ? What is your favourite type or cd?  We both love theatre and classical music and GBF whistles a lot, providing a fun background to our 'works'.

What is your favourite food? Good question - sadly it would take ages to write my favourites - I haven't tasted many things that I would not like to have again.

Tell us about the house block you've made? My first block! When you put the idea for your quilt on your blog, I thought I'd like to have a go at that. With no knowledge, but a lot of sewing background, and a lucky find in a magazine, I produced the house. I made it orange for you and as we were away from home every stitch was done by hand. I did feel good about producing something for a friend that we both love a lot.

Joan, Thank you so much!! I really love the way your block looks like a happy story book house, a little bit like gingerbread, good enough to eat! You are right about my fondness of orange. It's fun because it's one of the only blocks that have been appliqued. And I think it's great you made it while travelling, that means there will be some sea breezes stitched into the seams. 

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!! I hope you have fun things planned!! I'll be sewing so I might just have something to show you next week... :)

Friday, September 14, 2012

Friendly Friday - Melissa of Clothwork

Super Happy Friendly Friday!! Yippee!! 
This week we have another one of my favourite Aussie quilters. Melissa of Clothwork constantly impresses us with her beautiful colourful quilts. They have a modern yet timeless quality to them. Melissa hasn't been blogging as much lately because she's studying full time but when she does it's always worth seeing what she's up to! In the meantime let's find out more about this week's friendly feature super star...  

Hi Melissa, Tell us a bit about yourself?
  Im a mum to two kids 7 and 5 and  I love to sew!  I got my first 'proper' sewing machine when i was 7.  Its an old hand crank Wertheim which was about 100 years old when i got it! and its still sewing beautifully,  (my kids now use it )  I used to make all of my barbie doll clothes on it!  Being a stay at home mum I was able to indulge in some sewing and blogging but this year I have been able to return to full time study - ( Residential Building Design and Drafting ) which has been a dream of mine for a long time.  = Lots of study and little sewing : (

How long have you been quilting?  
Ive been quilting for a few years pretty much since ive had kids really... I made a quilt when my daughter was small (still in a cot) and it took me nearly 2 and a half years to finish it!  Mind you i cut it all out with scissors and hand tied it and hand sewed the binding,  Its terribly wonky, no blocks line up, some of the seams are coming apart but i love it!  Thankfully my quilting has since improved and i invested in a rotary cutter!!

What enticed you to start quilting? 

 I think it was seeing some quilts the ladies from Material Obsession had made and the fabrics they used ( Amy Butler ) it really opened up a whole new universe!

What do you love about quilting?  
Definitely the fabric!!  Dreaming up endless fabric combinations!!

Is there any part of the process that you don't like?
 Not really, basting is a tedious process but its good to get that big sandwich all together!!

Do you have a favourite sewing saying or motto? 

 I like the saying something about if you cant notice it galloping past on a horse its not worth worrying about.  Thats me, I like things to be well made but if its not perfect it doesnt bother me too much. ( It does if Im making it for someone else though! )

What model sewing machine do you use?  
I mainly sew on a Janome 1600p.  Its a very basic machine, straight stitch only but its really fast and has built in scissors! LOVE!!

Do you listen to music while you sew? What is your favourite type or cd?
Actually I dont, I enjoy the sweet sound of silence (after my kids have gone to bed - its usually when i sew! )  

What is your favourite food?  
I love all sorts of food!!  Hot and spicy especially!!

Do you have any furry friends that keep you company while you sew?

We have a Kelpie named Rainbow who keeps me company and she sometimes likes to get in on the photos!

Tell us about the house block you've made? I had lots of fun making the block for Rachael's quilt.  I used some of my favourite scraps and just improvised as i sewed it together.  

Its a quilters house with a tape measure front door, happy children playing, white fluffy rose clouds and a nice pink Monaro in the driveway for GBF!!
Enjoy your block Rach - cant wait to see the finished quilt! xx

Thank you Melissa!!! What a gorgeous house and garden!! So many special details! I can see your study in Residential Design is paying off!  I love all the scrappy fussy cutting, the pieced roof and the pink rose bud sky. And let me tell you, Gbf is over the moon about having a Monaro in the driveway!!! 
Pop over and say hello to Melissa at Clothwork. She hasn't posted on her blog for a while but the latest post has the most beautiful stitched alphabet sampler. 

Wishing everyone a wonderful weekend!! Gbf is making yummy gourmet pizzas for our dinner. Pizza and blogging.. what a great start to the weekend. 

Monday, September 10, 2012

UnRuly Love

Tonya, of Lazy Gal Quilting and author of  the wonderful Word Play Quilts book recently asked for contributions for a new quilt she has planned. 

UnRuly letters L-O-V-E , X-O-X's hugs and kisses and Hearts. A beautiful colour scheme of white, cream, all sorts of brown with hints of turquoise, red, pink and black. For more info go to this post.

I haven't pieced the letters because Tonya is planning to mix them all up. They've got quite chunky edges that can be trimmed to fit where they end up. 

 I made a wonky heart and couldn't resist resting it in an "L" .

And here's my very wonky and very UnRuly kisses.

Meanwhile on my design wall....

In an attempt to organise my way too many UFO's I pulled out this old top, made back in the days when I didn't even know what a blog was. I've had this quilt top out to quilt a few times but then I get distracted and it ends up back in the cupboard...
So last week I got it out again...
and I decided it needed to be a bit bigger...
So I pieced lots of 3 inch squares for the borders.
But I still wasn't happy with the overall look of the quilt...
There was a dark burgundy border around the center blocks and I decided it just didn't look right so I've unpicked that.
Then I swapped some of the borders around so the fabrics worked better which entailed more unpicking...

 So at the moment this quilt is all in pieces waiting for me to put it back together.

You might be wondering about the 9patch border, There's no rhyme or reason to the order of the blocks. I felt that it needed the irregular placement to add interest. That's one part of the quilt I like so it's safe from the unpicker... for now.

Let's hope I sew it all back together before I get distracted again...

Friday, September 7, 2012

Friendly Friday- Shay of Quilting in My Pyjamas

Yippee Yay!! It's Friday!!! In fact that rhymes with this weeks Friendly Friday super star - Shay!! Her blog Quilting in My Pyjamas is always such a laugh with real Aussie flair. Shay really knows how to tell a story whether it be about her quilting, family life, baking a fact there's often cakes. Sometimes her language is as colourful as her quilts but only ever in a fun way... Talking of words I really should let Shay do the talking, Over to you Shay...

Hey Shay, Tell us a bit about yourself? 
I live in Adelaide, Australia which is the state capital all the Eastern States poke fun at. Im happy to live in a place where it doesn’t take me three hours to get to work. 10 minutes people – it takes me 10 minutes and that’s if I get all the red lights on the way. Who’s laughing now? I’m married (this is my second go at it and I think I have it nailed this time since this marriage has lasted three times as long as the first one did  ) and three years ago I became a Bella (which is pyjama speak for Nanna ). Being a grandparent has been one of the best things that ever happened to me.

How long have you been quilting?
I started dabbling in quilting about 8 years ago. I made a few rag quilts and worked up the courage to plan an actual quilted quilt around 4 or 5 years ago . It sat without binding (actually being used mind you) for 18 months before I managed to finish it. Then I moved on to String quilts and made a couple of those. I would say I’ve been quilting seriously for about three or four years.  I’m just now finding my confidence and mojo.

What enticed you to start quilting?
I guess I was looking for a creative outlet of some kind, because my Monday to Friday life is high stress and  unpredictable . I like the idea that if I cut things and join A to B I can predict how it’s all going to turn out (in theory )   I had a sewing machine and could sew a straight line and since I cant draw, paint, make clothes, crochet  or sing – quilting was the obvious choice.

What do you love about quilting?
Getting excited about a new concept or idea. Sometimes stuff just  pops into my brain out of nowhere.  Then I love working out how to make it jump from my head into fabric (I don’t use patterns ), and then the starting part thrills my heart! Im going to confess I love doing binding because it means I can legitimately sit on my arse while Im doing it. It feels like doing nothing and I never do nothing! I love adding to and looking at my stash and keep trying to convince my husband that I don’t really have a lot. Most of it is hidden in secret places so he doesn’t have a heart attack.

Is there any part of the process that you don't like?
Im ashamed to admit this but I’m not all that taken with the quilting part of the process! Which is kind of the whole point to quilting really. I really must teach myself to free motion quilt one of these days!

Do you have a favourite sewing saying or motto?

It’s only fabric ...I have to remind myself of this often when Im stressing out about stuffing up! At my place stuff ups happen far my often than at other peoples houses.

What model sewing machine do you use?
I have a Janome QC 4618. When I bought it 8 years ago I had no idea that quilting would become an obsessive hobby. My next machine is going to be ultra special. I just have to wait for this one to die first!

Do you listen to music while you sew? What is your favourite type or cd?
I have an Ipod and docking station in the sewing room with some very questionable music choices loaded on to it. Im not going to confess all my musical sins in public. 

What is your favourite food?
Salt and Vinegar chips..oh and cheese. I love cheese. Rare steak. Usually all in the same meal.

Do you have any furry friends that keep you company while you sew? 
Our house is a zoo. We have two cats Mordecai and Moo and two German Shorthaired Pointers  Indiana Bones and Lola Daisy. I cant imagine my life without my fur babies.

Tell us about the house block you've made?
Im into cute and I was hoping Rachael was too , so my house block was born. I didn’t give it too much thought and just kind of delved into my scrap stash and this is what popped out ! 

Well Shay, I love what just popped out of your scrap stash!!! You've captured a sunny summers day in this block even down to the strawberries on the door. This block makes me want to wear a pretty summer dress, eat ice cream in the garden and admire the big blooming flowers. A very happy house indeed!!

Talking of fun in the sun, Shay is off on holidays.. lucky duck! I can just see it now, she'll be wearing a grass skirt, playing a ukulele underneath a swaying palm tree in Hawaii..
Pop over to Quilting in My Pyjamas if you want a giggle or two and wish her Bon Voyage. 

And a wonderful weekend to everyone!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Crazy Love

Remember this quilt top from ages ago?

It's now a quilt!!! 

It's actually been finished for a few weeks now but I've been struggling to get a really good photo of it.

 The fabrics, Crazy Love by Sis Boom, are so beautiful. They're rich and exotic, bright and pretty all at the same time. I've been trying to capture that on film. 

Although close, I don't think I've quite captured their true beauty.
Maybe it's been the light, my camera or maybe some fabrics just need to be seen in real life to be believed. 

For the backing I used a top I made a few years ago using mostly Brandon Mably fabrics.

I'm happy it's found it's destiny combined with the Crazy Love top. They make a perfect combo. Gbf calls it a Double A side quilt after the vinyl record singles that had great songs on both sides. A flash back to our youth!

Tanya Croft, my Long Arm Wonder Lady and I decided that circles would be a fun pattern to suit both sides. Those bubbly curves soften the geometric angles and make your eyes dance around in circles. 

So there you go, That's the quilt I call Crazy Love. And I am crazy about it! It's on the bed and brightens our room. One day I'm going to make lots of pillow cases in Sis boom fabrics to match. Can't have enough of a good thing!


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