Saturday, January 26, 2008


Happy Australia Day! - I am celebrating by spending a day on my Bernina... surprised? I have finished the cover for my machine. My MIL, June, made a cross-stitch which was given to me the year before. I have used it in the middle of the cover for my sewing machine. It has also allowed me to use some of the cat fabrics I had been collecting. I also used a scissors charm I had bought once on ebay.
It all went well when I assembled the front and back panels the other day, but when I started today the crap fairy had certainly visited my sewing room! When I went to round off the top corners, I rounded the bottom corner (on both the front and the back!) I nearly put it aside then, but straightened the cut and added another piece of fabric - in a quilt as you go style. Then when I cut the piece for the gusset, I cut it an inch too narow! So I added the black strips - I think of them like a design feature now! Anyway I am quite pleased with how it has come out.

Friday, January 25, 2008

Telstra... finally!

After four attempts (once they didn't turn up), Telstra has finally fixed our ADSL problem. They, of course, assumed the problem HAD to be at our end - poor dumb end-users that we are! Hubby had of course checked everything at our end before we even contacted them, even to the point of borrowing another modem. He also set it up so that it automatically tries to log back in, when it drops out. One day it recorded over 30 log-ins - sure the problem must be us! Anyway the last technician was convinced enough to sit at the exchange until he observed the problem (why could they not do that in the first place instead of spending time at our end re-checking everything we had checked - twice!) Luckily our eldest son has been available to sit home in the four hour windows they tell you they might turn up in!

I have finished two more quilts for the 'Bags of Love'. I will take them in next week. Since then I have started on a sewing machine cover with has been at the back of my mind for ages. It uses a stitchery panel made by my MIL.

I have added a photo of Cosmo since his haircut - it is like getting a new dog every few months!

There is also a photo of my Dad's cat Miska. I have never seen a cat that enjoys boxes and baskets so much. My Mum was relieved that at least he wasn't sleeping on her half-made jigsaw like he usually would!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Quiet week, quilting-wise and probably otherwise ...

I had a lovely day on Tuesday at quilters. Since then not much has happened on the sewing front. My youngest son was picked up on Wednesday to go and spend a few days at my parents. He was really happy to go as most of his mates are away (either on holidays or staying with the alternative parent) so it was good break from the humdrum of being home with most of his friends not available. On Tuesday the only different happening was I went to see a naturopath. They have given me a good remedy for my hay fever/sinus as I can already feel it kick in. However the diet they provided was very high protein/low carb and I don't think I can bring myself to follow it as I exercise heavily enough that I worry I may run out of energy. Anyway I am doing my own diet this week, if nothing happens I may try theirs next week. Other than that I have been at work or at the gym the rest of the week. I have finished sewing the binding on the stripy quilt and am starting on the binding for the pyramids quilt. Tomorrow I an travelling to Brisbane with older son and husband. Hubby is going to a meeting. Son & I thought we might go up town and check out a movie and the shops (particularly Rocking Horse Records - it's a generational thing!) Then I will remember why we left the big smoke and we will spend the rest of the week-end with my parents. On Sunday, we will bring everyone home with us from my Mum & Dad's - a lovely week-end but no sewing. However we do need to spend sometime discussing our trip to Finland with my Mum & Dad so that we can make appropriate bookings - a motor home ... are we mad?

Friday, January 11, 2008

Quilting gloves

I bought these gloves the other day and have been using them today. They are heaps better than my old gardening gloves! I haven't tried threading the needle with them on, but I have been able to take out pins and pull the thread through from the back when starting while the gloves are on. They are also quite light and much cooler than the gardening gloves. Now I suppose I might have to spend some time in the garden to get some use from my garden gloves!
First up I have quilted my 'Dancing Beijing' challenge quilt. I was quite happy with my quilting, but the quilt isn't exactly like I pictured. That, I suppose, is the fun of trying new techniques. It doesn't photograph well so I am not sure if I will be able to get a photo up when it is done. It has an embroidered section which doesn't 'pop' as much as I hoped it would. I think I am still happy with it though. Now I need to bind it - the next challenge - inside corners! When I first started, my machine started skipping stitches, but I kept my cool and changed the needle for a larger size, and that fixed the problem... maybe I am finally learning something!
This afternoon I started quilting one of the 'charity' quilts. It is all done with the walking foot but will still take a little while to do. I will add a photo when I get one - my camera battery was flat just now when I went to take one - I need to remember to check it!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

A taste of my day & Coco's ability to multi-task!

Coco has shown her ability to multi-task today. Not only does she help with sewing (- see earlier post) but she can also help with playing of computer games (with my youngest son). She then had to have a large nap to help get over the hard work ( the lead leaving her basket is the heating pad in the basket, even though it is reasonably warm today she loves it - she really seems to feel the cold.) We looked it up today on the interweb and her 20 years is the equivalent of 97 years of human age - so we have got to give a cat a break!

My youngest also made giant anzac bikkies today - Yummm!!! perfect - just slightly chewy in the center!
The last piccie is of my camera case - the case itself is slightly wonky but I had heaps of fun decorating it!

Monday, January 7, 2008

Tiring day...

So far today, I have done half an hour session with a Personal trainer - doing weights , then a class for an hour doing Pilates. After I showered and had something to eat, I went and did the grocery shopping. This afternoon I should be doing something useful around the house - continue the decluttering, etc but I have spent the time completing some more charity quilts. I have decided to leave the string quilt the size it is, so I found some backing and batting - have used some polar fleece for the batting, as I did not want anything too heavy. I have also finished another '1000 pyramids' quilt top, using the leftover triangles from the last one like this that I did. I must have gone really overboard cutting triangles! Anyway they are all used up now and I found a fabric in my stash to use as the backing. I am determined to not purchase anything but use what I have at the moment. So I started looking for batting and I have spent the last little while cutting all my leftover strips of batting straight and then joining them together with a zigzag stitch. Now the batting is patchwork as well ... anyway it all in the tradition of making do!
BTW is it more correct to call it 'batting' or 'wadding'? - that always trips me up!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Another quilt - size?

I have put the Jinny Beyer quilt away for the moment. My patience has run out for the moment. To do something totally opposite I started piecing a string quilt I have been collecting strips for. I thought I might use it as a 'charity' quilt (for a child). I made the blocks 9" (finished size), so the quilt is about 36" x 45". Is that too small? I don't think I have enough strips to increase another row each way. I am reluctant to put a border on it but have got a fabric that may be suitable. Because I used calico as a backing for the blocks I am concerned that if I add a border it will be relatively 'thin' compared to the centre (if you understand what I am getting at). The other concern is how do I quilt it? Maybe I should have made it quilt-as-you-go but I didn't want strips between the blocks as I wanted the impact of the blocks butting right up to each other... anyway it is too late for that now!