Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Blogger's BOM, little houses and secret sewing

Already it is the 7th month of Blogger's BOM and the latest block comes from Allison Harris from Cluck Cluck Sew.  Here are my 2 blocks.

My housing construction is coming along slowly, but steadily. Below are my five recent completions.

All over the world there are hundreds of ladies making these little houses from scraps. Each house block is just 3 inches square. To see what everyone else has been making go here. Some very industrious ladies have   finished their quilts already!

Now for the secret sewing. :)  It was my sister's birthday last week so I decided to make her a needlebook. She reads my blog, so I couldn't post the photos until she received the package.

I followed the same design as Susan's Hari Kuyo needlebook. The pages are wool felt and all the other fabrics are from old kimonos.

These needlebooks are lots of fun to make. I have started my third one! :)

The last few weeks I have had less time to read and comment on  blogs. I hope to be able to get back into my blogging routine soon.
Thank you for everyone who has visited and especially to those who have left comments. I love comments! ......and replying to them. :)

Monday, March 26, 2012

Sewing, knitting, cooking.

Time for stitching has been scarce the last couple of weeks, but I have finished the second branch of panel 1 for the vine quilt. This quilt seems to be progressing very slowly! Saturday night I had a spurt of enthusiasm and prepared all the leaves for the next 2 branches.

More preparation with the start of the next block for Friends of Baltimore.

There has been some secret sewing happening too. More on that later...:)

Last week a young friend and his wife welcomed their first child. Tiny blue booties for a precious little boy.

My annual hot cross bun cook-a-thon has begun. :) I make the traditional fruit buns, but recently started making chocolate hot cross buns also.  There is a batch of chocolate dough rising in the kitchen at the moment. (a little sweet....even for me a true chocoholic!!). I love my fruit buns, with just a little butter. :)

Recently I went to a lecture by An Moonen, from the Netherlands, based on her book The History of Dutch Quilts. The afternoon was well organised by the Quilt Study Group Victoria and Somerset Patchwork and Quilting and it was very well attended.
An is extremely knowledgeable and was able to identify a quilt as being Dutch from one small triangle of  Indian chintz fabric sewn in the quilt. (the owner has previously believed the quilt to be English)

This photo was taken early one morning when the air was still. It is of a branch of a huge gum tree in our back yard. You may be able to see the blossom and the bees. While I was taking the photo the the bees were very busy gathering pollen and the air around the tree was full of tiny blossom petals raining down. The sound of magpies warbling completed the picture of a beautiful Australian morning.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Next Roseville Album block complete

I fussy cut the looks a little angry!  I think I will do something like put beads for their eyes so they look a little less serious. Lol

Six blocks finished now. Woohoo!!! :)

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Hari-Kuyo Needlebook finished.

I just completed my first Hari-Kuyo needlebook!

Susan Elliott has been running a very successful e-course for this book. There have been participants from several states in the USA, France, Norway, United Kingdom, Canada, Greece and Australia. A truly worldwide gathering of ladies eager to learn from a very talented embroiderer.

Here is the kit I started with, along with some embroidery threads I added.

I gathered supplies from my stash for 2 more needlebooks:

The fabrics in this one are from old kimonos.

William Morris fabrics and my favourite colours.

All the pages for the needlebooks are wool felt.

The first step was to embroider the flower for the cover:

Next the embroidery for the inside back cover:

This is the part of the book that takes it far beyond any other needlebook. This page is for keeping worn and broken needles until February 8th, when, every year, Hari-Kuyo, or the Festival of Broken needles is held. Hari-Kuyo is a fascinating tradition from Japan where people bring their worn and broken needles to a shrine where the needles are placed in tofu. The tofu acts to sooth and protect the needles. By this act the needle workers are showing gratitude and respect to the needles. In Japan they believe that all objects have a soul and that these objects receive part of our soul when we use them.
If you would like to read more, go here and   here for a very good explanations of the tradition.

My book complete with labelled pages and needles:

To learn more about the e-course click on the button on my sidebar.

I have started embroidering the front cover for my second book.

Have a great weekend, everyone.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

All is well

.....back again.

Sorry about the panicked post earlier.  I thought I had lost all my sidebar while trying to change to the new blogger. (I deleted the panicked post when I realised what was going on!)
Luckily the old settings had been saved!!!

Another new look for my blog.

Back to stitching......:)

Saturday, March 3, 2012

The postman rang twice....

....well, he actually came 3 times this week!!!

The first parcel that came contained the pattern for this beauty!!

Margo Hardie made this version of the Gorsuch Quilt (she is still quilting it) and she received so much interest in it she decided to produce a pattern.

Included are full size pattern sheets and a CD of photos of each block.
Margo doesn't have a website or blog (yet), but if you want to contact Margo her email is  (no affiliations, just a happy customer)
Edited to add.....Margo now has a website here.

The second parcel to arrive was a long awaited one.

Lisa and I both thought this package of goodies might have lost its way! It seems it took the scenic route. Late last year Lisa had a giveaway on her blog and I was lucky enough to be one of her winners.

On the card inside the envelope Lisa gave details of the fabrics (one Smithsonian and 2 Shelburne) with the book. (Lisa was very generous in including them because she had an unavoidable delay in posting the package)

The book has a wonderful collection of small and large, and pieced and appliqued quilts. Lots of wonderful inspiration.  Thank you Lisa, especially for parting with those great fabrics! :)

The last package was a surprise from my sister (who is not a quilter....yet!!!)

I have already decided on 2 quilts I would love to make from the magazine. The videos are on the list to watch today. The weather is cold and wet here, so perfect for an inside day.

My thoughts today are with those facing weather extremes. There has been flooding rain over a large area of the eastern states of Australia. More rain is expected today. Also thinking of those affected by tornadoes in USA.

Take care everyone.