31 December 2010

Let's join the blocks

Now that you've made your blocks, you can see how simple they are. Here's the fun part - arranging them to make the most of the colours.

Join the blocks
The blocks are sewn in horizontal rows. Refer to the diagram below and lay out the 45 block A and 45 block B in nine rows on a large, flat surface or design wall. 

Start the odd rows with a block A and the even rows with a block B. Ensure that block A and block B are alternated in each row, with the long seams on block A running vertically. This will make it easier to sew the blocks together. 

Rearrange the blocks, if necessary, until you are pleased with the colour arrangement. You can see how some shades make blocks recede, while others seem to 'pop'. This is part of the fun of this pattern.


Pin and then stitch the blocks into rows. Press the seams of alternate rows in opposite directions.

Pin and then stitch the rows together, taking care to match seam lines. Press the seams.

Add the borders
Join the 5 1/2in pink and yellow print strips together into a single length. Press the seams. Measure the pieced quilt top through the centre length and trim two strips to this measurement.


Use pins to mark the sides of the quilt top and the border strips into quarters. Pin the borders to the sides of the quilt, matching the pins, and stitch them in place. Press the seams towards the borders.

Measure the quilt top through the centre width and trim two strips to this measurement. Use pins to mark the top and bottom of the quilt top and the border strips into quarters. Pin the borders to the quilt, matching the pins, and stitch them in place. Press the seams towards the borders.


How exciting! You have completed your quilt top. Come back tomorrow for the final set of instructions about how to finish your quilt.

30 December 2010

Let's start sewing

Welcome to all the new visitors to my blog! I am pleased that you have stopped by and would love to see photos of your quilts if you use my pattern. I drew this pattern using Electric Quilt software - fabulous to use for diagrams.

Enough talking - let's get sewing!

Make the blocks
 Block A


Join matching 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in yellow strips to two opposite sides of one 4 1/2in pink square. Press the seams towards the yellow strips.

Join matching 1 1/2in x 6 1/2in yellow strips to the remaining two sides of the square. Press the seams towards the yellow strips. 

Make 45 Block A, as shown above.

Block B


Join matching 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in pink strips to two opposite sides of one 2 1/2in x 4 1/2in yellow rectangle. Press the seams towards the pink strips. 

Join matching 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in pink strips to the remaining two sides. Press the seams
towards the pink strips. 


Make 45 Block B, as shown above.

Check back here tomorrow for how to put the blocks together.

29 December 2010

Let's get cutting

A couple of days ago I posted the fabric requirements for my Sunshine on Roses quilt. Do you have your fabric ready? Let's get cutting the pieces for this easy quilt.

You will be making two blocks for this quilt - block A and block B. All cutting instructions are in inches and include scant 1/4in seam allowances.

I recommend you cut and make sample blocks A and B before cutting out all the pieces to complete the quilt. That way, you can ensure your cutting is accurate. Tomorrow, I will provide instructions for making the blocks.


Remember, these instructions are for a quilt that measures 154cm x 164cm (60 1/2in x 64 1/2in). If you would like a larger quilt than this, simply increase the amount of fabric required, cut extra pieces and add extra rows of blocks.


Cut the fabric 
From the assorted pink prints
Cut 45, 4 1/2in squares for block A.
Cut 180, 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in strips in matching sets of four for block B.

From the assorted yellow prints
Cut 45, 2 1/2in x 4 1/2in rectangles for block B.
Cut 90, 1 1/2in x 6 1/2in strips in matching sets of two for block A.
Cut 90, 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in strips in matching sets of two for block A.

From the pink and yellow print
Cut six 5 1/2in strips across the width of the fabric for the borders.

From the pink fabric
Cut seven 2 1/2in strips across the width of the fabric for the binding.

Check back tomorrow for how to make the blocks. 

28 December 2010

Every home should have one

For ages, I have yearned for a letter opener. You know, one of those slender tools that helps you simply and elegantly slit open envelopes. (I tussle with envelopes - it's a special skill I have - and often they fight back.)

The obvious place to look for such an implement is a touristy shop that sells souvenirs but, until today, I haven't been able to track one. Now I am the proud owner of this gorgeous souvenir of my own country.



Isn't it totally over-the-top? Just in case you want a closer look, here's the insert section.

Made in China, of course!

So now I am happy (and obviously easily pleased.)

27 December 2010

Let's get cheery!

Australia has now slumped into summer, even though it's raining in many places, flooding all over the country and we are being flogged in the cricket. In parts of the northern hemisphere, snow has cut off towns and is isolating many people. Just as well we quilters have other distractions!

Want to make a cheerful quilt project? Over the next week or so, I'll post the instructions so you can make your version of my Sunshine on Roses quilt. Anyone is welcome to join in, so tell all your friends!

 

Sunshine on Roses measures 154cm x 164cm (60 1/2in x 64 1/2in). If you would like a larger quilt than this, simply increase the amount of fabric required and add extra rows. It is simple to construct - all squares and rectangles.

Fabric requirements
Make sure you choose an assortment of prints to add to the visual interest of the pattern. I chose the colours for this quilt after I noticed the effect of bright sunshine highlighting the intense pink rose petals in my garden.

You will need:
  • 1.6m (1 3/4yd) assorted pink prints for the blocks
  • 1.5m (1 2/3yd) assorted yellow prints for the blocks
  • 90cm (36in) pink and yellow print for the border
  • 50cm (20in) pink fabric for the binding
  • 1.8m (2yd) 240cm (94in) wide fabric for the backing
The amount of fabric listed above is based on 100cm (40in) width, as this is usually the
useable width after selvedges have been removed. The backing fabric, though, is wider. I
always wash and iron fabric before cutting. This is a scrap quilt, so the amount of fabric
stated is only approximate.


I used a variety of pink and yellow fabrics to create a bright pattern all over the quilt. You can use scraps - for the pinks, you will need 4 1/2in pink squares and four 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in matching pink strips and for the yellows, you will need 2 1/2in x 4 1/2in yellow rectangles and two 1 1/2in x 4 1/2in and two 1 1/2in x 6 1/2in matching yellow strips. 

This pattern is perfect for an I Spy quilt. Choose novelty prints for the 4 1/2in squares and the 2 1/2in x 4 1/2in rectangles and bright colours for the strips.

So choose your fabrics and get ready for a fun sewing project. 
I'll post the cutting instructions in a couple of days, so you can get that rotary cutter revved up!

25 December 2010

Pleasures

 
 
 
The sun is shining, there's a gentle breeze and the washing is flapping on the line. Looking forward to prawn and mango salad for lunch and many hours of stitching. Lovely.

22 December 2010

At my house today

Thank you to my postman! I've just received 42 fat quarters of Kona Cotton solids in the Ocean and Hot Spice colour collections. How gorgeous are they?


Now I can get started on a very special quilt.

21 December 2010

Today

I am thankful

that I have time this week to continue my love affair with hand piecing blocks for this quilt.

As I finish each block, I am compelled to make another one and then another one and then another one... you get the picture! So yes Sarah, I think this may end up being a bed-sized quilt - just because I am loving the process so much. Are you shocked? :-)

Hello to Eva from Germany, who discovered my blog recently. Welcome!

18 December 2010

Can't wait to see this

Frank Gehry revealed the model of his design for a new business school building at the University of Technology, Sydney (UTS) this week. What fantastically amazing shapes. Love it!

15 December 2010

I'm in hand piecing heaven

I've been busily hand piecing blocks for the past few weeks to make a happy, scrappy quilt. Here's a peek of part of some blocks from my design wall.

I confess that constructing this quilt is making me feel totally content. I think it's the rhythm of the needle through the fabric and the pretty colours of the fabrics from my stash. I'm so easily pleased.

14 December 2010

Reflections on: fantasy personal shopper

Earlier this year, my stash was purged of metres of fabrics I will never use. I can’t remember why I bought some of these pieces in the first place! I have decided to prevent this happening again by hiring a personal shopper who specialises in advising quilters.

Does such a person exist? A personal shopper helps other people buy goods by making suggestions for purchases. Usually this relates to fashion items such as clothes and accessories, but also in other fields such as home furnishings. I can’t see why we couldn’t extend this to the quilting world.

Here is a job description for my fantasy personal shopper. She needs to have these attributes: empathy, tact, a sense of humour and patience. She needs to accept, without becoming frustrated, that often I will say I want green fabric when what I really need is pink. The ability to read my mind would be convenient for this purpose.

My personal shopper needs to understand that there is no such thing as too many blue fabrics, but one brown fabric is one too many. She has to accept that Sunbonnet Sue and yo-yos have no place in my world and that a look of horror will cross my face if they are accidentally encountered. 

I expect my shopper to have extensive knowledge of the current ranges of fabric and also the new ones just about to hit the shops. She should also have contacts in the quilting world that can help her track down an extra fat quarter of a specific fabric I bought in 1992. Knowing my habits so well, she will purchase a metre instead, so that when I finally get around to sewing in a few more years, there will be sufficient to double the width of the borders without panic. 

My shopper will have wide-ranging storage experience. She will be able to stack fabric on shelves so that I can remove a piece from the bottom of the stack without the whole lot cascading onto the floor. An understanding of creative chaos is important. I do not want her touching my carefully arranged piles of fabric on my sewing table unless I call for her help; in which case it will be because she has neglected to read my mind on this matter. 

Since my personal shopper will constantly entice me with purchase suggestions, she must have a firm grasp of budgeting principles. At the same time, she should know that exceptional temptations call for extreme action and that spending a week’s income on fabric that is 50% off retail price is sensible and is to be applauded. 

Wouldn’t we all love a personal shopper to help with our quilting needs? At the very least it will give us someone to blame for all those inexplicable pieces of strange fabric in our stashes. 

What guidelines would you give to your fantasy personal shopper?

11 December 2010

Unpicking




Sometimes a quilt design idea that looks good in EQ just doesn't work successfully once I convert it to fabric. Stitching blocks is the only way to see how the pattern translates.

After making a dozen of my current blocks, I've decided I just don't like one half of each block. Just as well I have my trusty pirate friend to help me with the unpicking.

I am happy to do the unpicking because I know the amended blocks will make a happy quilt. And that's important!

10 December 2010

Yesterday's dyeing

I dyed two pieces of fabric yesterday but I only like one of them. The first one is horrible, but it may redeem itself if I cut it and used for a pieced project. Or over-dye or stamp on it or print on it?
The second piece, though, I love. Really rich colours and interesting textures.


This was the first time I painted with dyes instead of doing immersion dyeing.It was fun, but very messy. A job best done outside in future.

09 December 2010

Podcasts


Please help me out here! I've just become interested in podcasts and would like to hear any recommendations you have for quilting, textile or design-related podcasts (and vidcasts, for that matter). Which ones do you enjoy and why?

08 December 2010

Inside my head

It's a very messy place. Yesterday I had the opportunity to join a group of friends who had gathered to share various techniques for creating pattern on fabric.We are working on individual projects that will come together next year. I am quite scared, but scared is good because it will make me develop my work.

In the meantime, my head is ready to explode. I can see my quilt in my mind's eye and I already have a name for it. Whether the project develops as I envisage it, or morphs into something completely different, inside my head it is complete.

If only it was that simple. First step this week: dye my fabric.

02 December 2010

They have to go!

Looking for a small gift for a quilting friend? Or maybe a reward for yourself for making it through this far in 2010? Here's your chance to purchase one of my selvedge pincushions (they are six inches square).

I'm not making any more of these, so once they are gone, that's it! Send me an email
or leave a comment that includes your email address and I will send you a PayPal invoice. Delivery only within Australia - no overseas orders, thanks.

Oops! Forgot the price - $10 each plus $6 postage within Australia.

28 November 2010

Magic

A baby triffid raises its head. Magic.


(It's actually a cucumber.)

24 November 2010

Printing gift wrapping paper

I came across instructions from Electric Quilt this morning, explaining how to use EQ7 to design your own gift wrapping paper. What fun! I'll be exploring this as a way to create personalised wrapping paper for special events.  Click here to learn how.

23 November 2010

Oh, lemon tree

Regular readers of my blog will remember this: my Eureka lemon tree after I heavily pruned it last February.
I know many of you wonder how the poor thing is now, so here's a pic I took a couple of days ago.

I'm happy with the new growth on the tree. Resilient, isn't it? Next weekend's task is to pull out all the grass around the base of the tree (all the rain we've had lately has encouraged grass to take over my garden beds) and lay down a feed of chicken manure and a layer of mulch. Then I hope to have fruit next year!

20 November 2010

Sorted

I have three projects on the go at present and it has been driving me mad trying to keep the pieces for each one separate. Today I bought these nifty (cheap - $2 each) A4-size pouches and organised my piecing. It's extraordinary how such a simple act has such a positive impact on my productivity.

17 November 2010

Kambrachallenge 2011

This is the challenge fabric I have to work with for next year's quilt. Yuck.

14 November 2010

Words


I think I have used all my words today writing other things and I have just about run out. Do you think we have quotas for each day?

10 November 2010

Magazine heaven

I'm a magazine addict and always have been. I love the smell of a brand-new magazine and enjoy the feel of turning the pages to expose something I've never read before. When my faves arrive in the same week, I am in magazine heaven.


Issue 144 of Down Under Quilts is now available. I have a couple of articles in this issue. One of the most glorious quilts you will ever see is included in one of the articles - it is Kim McLean's Blue Toile quilt. I first saw it at the Australasian Quilt Convention last year and was blown away by her precision. Gorgeous.


Issue 3 of Down Under Textiles has also arrived. You can't buy this one in a newsagent but, if your local quilt shop doesn't stock it, you can buy it here. I have a couple of articles in this magazine, also. There's also an article about sun printing by Julie Haddrick that has me reaching for my fabric paints - her samples are fab!

Now even though I can't hold this magazine in my hand (it arrives by email), I forgive Fat Quarterly because issue 3 has the theme of fussy cutting - oh, bliss! It gives me great pleasure to fussy-cut motifs from fabrics and to stitch them together to create different patterns. Great patterns. You can buy your copy here.

And if that's not enough, the Winter 2010 issue of Studios is heading my way. Truly magazine heaven this week!

On a sad note, though, another of my fave magazines has ceased publication. The November issue of Notebook: magazine is the last, since News Magazines decided it wasn't making enough money. That's the harsh reality of magazine publishing - magazines can't continue on love alone. So I'm determined to enjoy the ones I have!



07 November 2010

Spring perfume

Star jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides) in my garden. The fragrance is wafting into my house on gentle puffs of breeze. Divine.

06 November 2010

Sorry

Issue 3 of Down Under Textiles magazine arrived this week. It includes an article I wrote about using painted fusible webbing in textile art. Despite the article being given a title of "Make a Sorry quilt", it is absolutely NOT about how to replicate my journal quilt.


I made Sorry in February 2008 as a personal response to the Australian Prime Minister's apology to the Stolen Generation. I have previously blogged about it here. I would sincerely hope that other textile artists have their own unique responses. Sorry is not a project.

The article is actually about painting fusible webbing and I included six samples. The photographs and captions are incorrectly numbered in the magazine. I have been informed that they have been corrected in the digital version, but I haven't seen that.

If you have a copy of the print version, here are the corrections.
Photo 1 - caption 4
Photo 2 - caption 3
Photo 3 - caption 5
Photo 4 - caption 2
Photo 5 - caption 6
Photo 6 - caption 1

01 November 2010

Confirmed!

I'd heard a whisper some time ago that the well-known Perth shop, Calico & Ivy, was going to open a store in Sydney. Well, it's happening next month! 

I've visited the Perth store several times, starting a long time ago when it was operated by Joanna Brazier as Calico House. The business has evolved over the years and is now a hub for quilters and lovers of yarn and other crafty goodness. I can't wait to visit the Sydney version in Balmain.  Read all about it here.

27 October 2010

Sense and scents

It makes sense to take a break from life's routines and enjoy a day with a friend. Angela and I had a tasty lunch together today and caught up with all our news. The restaurant was at Eden Gardens, a most inspirational nursery. Luckily, I arrived home before the storms broke.

I wish this was a smell-o-blog so you could sniff the scent of these oregano plants I bought home with me. The one on the left is a variegated oregano and the one on the left is Greek oregano. Here, I'm rubbing the leaves now - smell that? Divine.


Chris - the quilt's not finished yet. I'll show a pic when I have completed it.

24 October 2010

Slow stitching

There is progress with my current quilt. Slow stitching aids thoughtful deliberations.

20 October 2010

Queensland Quilt show

I can't be in Brisbane to see the Queensland Quilt show this week, so I've consoled myself by browsing through photos of the prize-winning quilts here. There are some gorgeous designs on display!

Aqua shades

I'm loving these shades of aqua and I'm looking around my house to see if there's something I can paint with them...


17 October 2010

Kambrachallenge

This year's challenge was to use a bundle of eight fat eighths of hand-dyed pink fabrics. I added a single print and made my quilt, Passionflower, so I could practise hand appliqueing circles. I wasn't at the great reveal yesterday, but you can see the other Kambrachallenge quilts here.

13 October 2010

I should

- finish writing an article
- clean the house
- send some emails
- sew some more blocks
- write up a quilt pattern
- plant some bulbs.

But I just can't be bothered with any of that. Instead, I'm going to watch this:

09 October 2010

Reflections on: slowing down

For many of us, life moves at a frantic pace. There are family activities to coordinate, households to run and work deadlines to meet. Time is critical and we hurry from one activity to the next. I have never understand, though, why we rush our quilt making.

Over the past couple of years, I have deliberately tried to slow down my life. This has involved reducing the hours I work in paid employment and cutting the travel time to and from work so that I can take more time to do other things I enjoy. I am downshifting – trying to establish a slower rhythm so that I can appreciate everything as each moment unfolds.

It has been wonderful making more time for quilt making. I’ve never subscribed to the view that a fast quilt is a good quilt and, as a consequence, have many projects that are not finished. Now there is time to actually complete my projects, but still be able to enjoy the process.

I have often wondered why some people focus so much on speed. We see patterns for quilts promoted in terms of how few hours it will take to make them. We hear of quilters who churn out dozens of quilts a year, as if the high numbers are desirable achievements. I do appreciate that some quilters need to make quilts quickly because of the limited time available to them, but that's not for me.

I’d like to suggest that there are growing numbers of us who prefer a less frantic pace. The ‘slow craft’ movement fits beautifully with the current resurgence of people discovering the pleasure of crafting handmade objects.

I feel a cultural shift towards slowing down. This allows us to get in touch with ourselves, our families and our communities and to restore the natural rhythms of our lives. Many people are enjoying reconnecting with their food by growing their own vegetables, even in urban areas. Sharing with the bounty with friends also allows a connection with other people – something that quilters have long enjoyed.

Slowing down my life allows me to spend more time with friends than I did before. I can learn from them, share with them and just enjoy their company. I can try new techniques, perfect old ones and cast off the burden of unfinished quilts. I can’t tell you how much pleasure I have found in my stash.

Being mindful of every part of the quilt making process is so rewarding. Each step, including designing a pattern, choosing the fabric and stitching the pieces, creates its own joyful moments. By actively involving myself in the complete cycle of making a quilt, I can savour the pleasure every step of the way - no matter how long it takes.

06 October 2010

The Stitch Files

Hand stitching is one of my loves, but I have a very limited knowledge of different embroidery stitches. For years I have read Sharon's postings about stitches and marveled that there are so many. Today, Sharon announced her new project - The Stitch Files. These are nifty worksheets that show each stitch and allow space for you to attach a worked sample, enabling you to build up you own file of stitches, perfect for reference.

It is a brilliant idea. Click over here to read all about it and to download the first (free) sheets. Thanks Sharon!

02 October 2010

Simple

Such an unsatisfying week; having struggled with a stuffed-up head, constant sneezing and coughing and general lack of interest in anything. So it's the simple things that are occupying my days - reading (I'm half-way through The Legacy by Kirsten Tranter - it's riveting) and stitching. I've just entertained myself by pressing these half-square triangles and will enjoy the mindless pleasure of snipping off the ears of fabric. That's about all I'm good for!


26 September 2010

Sunday snapshot






Brilliant spring day in Sydney. Interesting series of talks about various aspects of textile design at Mosman Art Gallery. Great exhibition of Sydney textiles from the 1940s and 50s by Annan Fabrics at the same gallery (it's on until 10 October). Good company (thanks Sarah) and a lovely surprise gift - a bundle of eight pieces from Sarah's new fabric line, From Little Things, in my fave colourway. (Jump over here for your chance to win a bundle of this fabric - it's not in the shops yet!)

Sigh...such a relaxing day.

23 September 2010

Little piles

of half-square triangles are appearing on my sewing table. All hand stitched with pleasure.

21 September 2010

Reflections on: quiltmaking and shopping

Imagine a world without rotary cutters, special rulers and convenient quilt shops full of fabric. Twenty five years ago, the Australian quilting world was exactly like this. Would you still enjoy making quilts without all these modern conveniences?

Sometimes I am in two minds about all the tools and notions available for quilt makers today. Sure, it is handy to have a ruler that makes it straightforward to cut tricky shapes with a rotary cutter and it certainly saves time that can be used for stitching the fabric pieces together. It is very satisfying to be able to purchase exactly the desired shade of thread to perfectly match a particular printed fabric, but if you had to use a different coloured thread, would it stop you in your tracks?

Do we really need all the notions we buy? Do we enjoy the act of shopping for the requirements to make a quilt more than the actual making of the quilt? It has long been recognised that shopping makes us feel good. I have lost track of the number of times I have asked quilters who have recently visited a quilt show to tell me about the show. Inevitably, most of them start listing all the things they bought there. Rarely do they talk unprompted about the quilts in the exhibition – it is always the shopping experience they describe first.

According to an article by Willow Lawson in Psychology Today magazine (March/April 2006), when a person is faced with something new, thrilling or challenging, such as shopping, dopamine floods the brain’s pleasure centres. This produces an agreeable feeling and contributes to the act of buying. I think we often shop to enjoy the overall sensory experience as much as to actually purchase goods we need.

Consider how many times we visit a craft show or a quilt shop, not really planning to purchase anything specific, but just to look. In how many of those instances do we leave the venue with a clutch of bags containing interesting new acquisitions? It is very rare that a person does not come away with at least a fat quarter.

Think about all the quilt making tools and gizmos, patterns and fabrics we buy. Do we use most of them straight away to make quilts, or do most of them end up stored safely in our sewing rooms? Do we really need all that stuff, or do we just buy it because we enjoy shopping and the social activity with our friends?

Pared back to the essentials, quilt making only requires fabric, thread, scissors and needle. Many people still make quilts using these basic ingredients. They continue to enjoy the act of creating a quilt and they are satisfied with the pleasure and warmth the quilt provides. Their need to create is fulfilled without having to outlay a huge expense.

In fact, many quilters make gorgeous quilts from the off casts of others. Many groups that make quilts for giving away to members of the community work in this way – using donations from other quilters. They use the fabric that is given to them to make interesting designs that are gratefully received and enjoyed by the recipients.       

I'm not immune to the charms of shopping at a well-stocked quilt shop. I often splurge on must-have items, even though it wasn't planned. Sometimes an item catches my eye and after I buy it and use it, I wonder how I managed to sew without it. I am only human, after all.

It just gives me pause for thought. Are we so caught up in consumerism that we buy the latest ‘must-have item’ automatically before thinking through whether we will really use it? Or do we consider carefully before adding another tool to our sewing room or another fabric to our stash? In my case, I would like to think the latter is true, but I am sure it is probably mostly the former. Perhaps this is also true for you?

17 September 2010

Ooh, ooh! A giveaway




My very talented friend Sarah Fielke is giving away bundles of her very own fabric. This is Sarah's first fabric line, From Little Things (but I'm sure it will not be her last fabric design!)

This fabric is not yet available in the shops, so hop over here for your chance to win!

15 September 2010

Moving forward






We said farewell to Wally today, so I am ready to start a new quilt in colours that will cheer me, using this block.

11 September 2010

Entangled

It's been a mixture of excitement and sadness in my red-and-white life this week. There's the high of watching our team face elimination each week in the finals. Exciting and exhausting. So far, so good.

The low came with the news of a sudden death. For the past eight or so years, Wally has occupied the seat next to me at all our home games. He has made our life all the richer. We miss you already from our red-and-white tribe, Wally.

08 September 2010

Binding tips






Issue 143 of Down Under Quilts magazine is out this week. It includes an article of mine, providing the lowdown on quilt binding options. Enjoy!

07 September 2010

Oh to be in Perth


Thanks to my friend Stephanie, I now have a copy of the catalogue for stitched and bound 2010, an exhibition of contemporary quilts organised by the West Australian Quilters' Association Inc. It's a pity, then, that I am on the other side of the country!

(The cover shot is detail of He Reached for the Hem of Heaven and Chose by Margaret Ruane.)

05 September 2010

Lucky

I've been the lucky recipient of two gifts this week. The first is a set of postcards featuring some of the fabulous Twelve by Twelve quilts. I doubt that I'll be able to send them anywhere, though. I suspect they'll end up adorning my sewing studio.I won these in a giveaway from Brenda, but if you'd like to buy your own set (or a set for a friend), you can do so here.


My second gift is from Kate. She enjoyed playing with dye and fabric last week (you can read about her experiments here). Yesterday, at our scquilters' day at the pub, she gave me this fat quarter. This is the front - a dyed piece of white fabric that has a white-on-white pattern. The colour has a subtle effect.


When you turn it to the back, though - wow! I love the spiral effect that Kate has made. I will definitely try this particular folding method next time.

What a lucky week I've had. Fingers crossed the luck extends to the Swans winning the first elimination final this afternoon. It is not good footy weather. There are wild westerly winds here and it will be a real challenge kicking for goal (and keeping our caps on at the game!).

02 September 2010

Textile design

There's an interesting article in today's Sydney Morning Herald about Nance Mackenzie and Anne Outlaw, two designers who started their textile business, Annan Fabrics, in Sydney in 1941. Using Australian motifs, they screen printed their designs - up to 36 metres of fabric a day. Wow.


Mosman Art Gallery has an exhibition that includes examples of their textiles. It is on until 10 October. While I was clicking around on their website, I also saw that the gallery is presenting a Textile Design Symposium on 26 September. Put this one in your diary, because it is a fabulous programme of specialist speakers!



30 August 2010

Out and about

I walked too much today and now my already sore foot is very sore indeed.

Today's action:
- I stood in a queue for two-and-a-half hours to buy tickets to the Swans elimination final (curse you Ticketek)
- I met Brenda and we went to the Art Gallery
- We inspected the Paths to Abstraction exhibition (underwhelming)
- We looked at the Indian Empire, Multiple Realities exhibition (fabulous textiles)
- I caught up with the paintings of my fave John Olsen (no trip the gallery is complete for me without paying homage to his paintings)
- We met another quilter (from Adelaide! hi Jenny!).

Now, to prop my foot up for the night...

29 August 2010

More Pukka components

More of the textile delights from Fiona Wright. First, silk chenille kit - has base cloth, four layers of coordinating recycled sari fabric and a layer of hand-dyed silk or organza. Lush.

Then, a collection of recycled sari silk and hand-dyed organza plus fabulous Indian sparkles. I'm loving those colours.

Finally, button baubles.

Now, to ponder how I will use some of these tantalising textiles...