25 February 2012

Saturday in the garden

My garden always surprises me. These gorgeous flowers wowed me with their beauty when I wandered around in my garden this morning. All currently in flower! So good for soothing my spirit.

19 February 2012

Hand piecing

Those of you who visit here regularly know of my love of hand piecing and quilting. I would prefer to hand stitch everything I make. This means that it is a slow process and that's part of the reason I love it.

I make stuff because I enjoy it. I never claim to be an artist. It worries me that making quilts has become so commercialised, with consumers rushing to buy new fabric lines just because they are the latest thing or being persuaded to buy strangely-shaped rulers that allow you to cut shapes that you can easily cut with normal rulers or templates, if you only knew how.

That's why I felt relief when I discovered Serena Potter's blog, Evan Wren Quilting, today. The joy of accidentally coming across someone else who honours the hand stitch is one of the reasons I value the internet so much. It's worth hopping over there for a peek.

PS The block shown here is Lady of the Lake. I am hand piecing a queen-sized scrap quilt made of these blocks and have only one row to go. Such pleasure.

14 February 2012

Choose happiness

Some days, it's so difficult to be positive. We are constantly bombarded with negative, nasty stories in the media and I find that just wears me down. So I try to choose to be happy about the small things in my life, like this silk paper heart that I made a while ago.

It's easy to make. The wire is placed between two fine sheets of silk paper, which are then glued together. Once it dries, cut out a heart shape. I rubbed over the top with a crayon to emphasise the wire coil. Easy, peasy!

Looking at the heart makes me ridiculously happy. I think I'll make some more!

11 February 2012


Several weeks ago, I watched an episode of Design Matters TV (DMTV), where Linda Kemshall showed how to knit cowls from left-over yarn. I had a bag of small balls of variegated yarns that I had purchased about five years ago at a craft show. Initially I thought I'd use them for couching on textile works but hadn't. Perfect for this project I thought.

This was also an opportunity to teach myself to knit on circular needles, which I had not done before. After a few false starts (I had no idea that the needles came in different lengths and I struggled to work out how to make my stitches fit until I discovered that the ones I had were too long). I bought shorter needles and I was off!

This is my cowl so far.

I love the variety of colours and textures. So easy to knit in a simple moss stitch pattern.

Before anyone else comments - yes, it's blue! Would you expect anything less?

07 February 2012

06 February 2012

Singer is celebrating its 160th anniversary and has released this limited edition sewing machine - the Singer 160. Isn't it a beauty? I can just picture it in my sewing room!

Down Under Quilts is giving you the chance to win one of these limited edition machines (as well as other great prizes). The challenge is to create a quilt that speaks of what Abundance means to you. Full details are here.

The winning quilts will be displayed at the Australasian Quilt Convention in Melbourne in April. Closing date is 12 March.

01 February 2012

My quilt at Houston

Remember I had a quilt in the Textured Treasures exhibition at Houston last year? Here's Bonnie McCaffery with her video interview of Lisa Walton, who curated the exhibition. Don't blink, or you might miss my quilt! (Do enjoy seeing all the quilts and have a bonus beading lesson!)