Wednesday, April 30, 2008

April 2QAQ

You can read about some of this month's 2QAQ meeting on Linda's or Caity's blogs. On the way down, Caity & I did some shopping at Jindalee. First we stopped for coffee and I had to take a photo of this great hearse in the car park of the shopping centre.

It even had a coffin in the back! Then we went to DFO and my favorite shop was David Lawrence. I bought the prettiest top and a cotton knot top at great mark-down prices. I also bought another shirt wih interesting stripes at Under the Table. I think this one was made for the outlet store as it was not very expensive. We had a great morning.

2QAQ meeting was good and these are the ATC's I recieved in return for the ones I took.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Lets Go Crazy

Today after a boring start to my sewing day (hemming jeans...blagghh!!), I got stuck into making some ATC's.

I have made some before in a class with Kathy Adams. I made 4 in that class - gave one to Kathy (and got one back), gave two more away and never recieved a return card (won't do that again!) and have one left from that 'collection'. This is it... it had an underwater theme.

Today I wanted to make some more as there might be some ATC's to swap with at tomorrow's 2QAQ meeting. So my chosen theme was 'Let's Go Crazy' as I had been wanting to make some crazy patch ATC's.
This is my Vintage Bride version...
My Pretty in Pink version...
Denim & Lace (Marty Rhone has a lot to answer for)....
Disco Divas...

Thursday, April 24, 2008

New monster to feed...

We have a new toy in the house. I have been cleaning out the filing cabinet and felt very uncomfortable putting all the old paperwork in the bin (there was enough info there for someone to apply for a loan in our names!) so we bought a paper shredder. So now it sits near the study desk with a pile of papers next to it & every so often it gets fed a few sheets! It's like a new obsession to feed the monster.

On the sewing front I have finally managed to finish the Australian wild flower table runner designed by Helen Godden. Here it is....
The colours do not show true in the picture of the whole runner but are closer to true in the detail picture here...

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Raffle Quilt again...

We had a sewing bee on the TQ raffle quilt today and had a successful day. Now, I am trying to be more positive than I have been in the last few blogs because I have got over the worst of the blahs and I feel my sense of humour is starting to return. But (yeah there is always a 'but'), why is there always one person ready to burst your balloon? The day went well with only minor dramas which we coped with and everyone seemed to be happy with the progress of the quilt. When we get to the end of the day - we lay out the rows we have and blurt - one of the club members has to make a negative comment about the quilt - why do they have to do that? You know, think it but don't say it! That person is very welcome to design and organise next year's raffle quilt but please at this late stage don't start criticising this one! You know if I was to make this design again I would make it slightly differently - the design can always be improved but please don't tell me what you think is wrong with this quilt - positive comments only please! My skin has got very thin lately and bruises easily!

Anyway the rant has abated and I can now show you the photos of what we accomplished today. We realised when we started to put it together that we were one 'sun' block short, but Yvonne did a great job and whipped up one more! The only other drama is that Sheila's glasses lost a screw and couldn't be repaired, so she was blinking like an owl and had to check if she was putting the right pieces together!!
This is the sun blocks combined with the flying geese - the first row in summer now done (oops - photo is up-side down!)
These are the first three rows of the quilt which represent summer - the first two rows are finished and the third row of heart blocks are made but need to be trimmed and the blocks joined.
The spring section has a row of Dresden plates in spring colours. Today some of the ladies embroidered the centre circles of the dresden plates -
This is the detail of the centre embroidery -

I think everyone did a great job and should be heartily pleased with today's effort!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Day off

I was very lucky today and was granted the day off work. I have done no sewing today - which I think I needed a break from - too much lately - need to get my mind clear!

I went to Gym this morning and my only point of interest is that today in our Bodystep class when we got to the push-ups I accomplished for the first time ever in a class - about four full pushups (on my toes) before dropping back to my knees! I have been thinking for a while I must be ready to give them a go and so I was quite happy with doing the few I did. Progress!

The rest of the day has been spent trying to declutter and tidy. This is the state of my filing!

The drawer which used to hold it all has finally broken beyond repair and I have purchased these plastic filing boxes for the files as they should fit in place of the drawer. But doing the tidy up is mind blowingly dull - I can see why it built up to a stage of breaking the drawer! It is very tempting to just move the files over but I am trying to get rid of the unnecessary stuff in them - horrible job but I will persist.

I have also been reading this book today which Caity lent me. It is keeping me absorbed and now I feel I must go and clear out my wardrobe and think a little about what I will buy in the future. I also did some Internet shopping and bought some camisoles from Ezibuy. I need some to wear under open/low cut tops to hide a scar on my chest. Also it will make them more suitable for the office! It should make me gamer to wear some of the new clothes I have made lately with v-necks. I have made an appointment to see a plastic surgeon to see if I can get the scar fixed but in the meantime I will try the cami's.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

The blahs...

I am feeling very blah the last day or so...blagghhh! I know this too will pass (and I am madly ingesting evening primrose oil to try and aid it!)

TQ was fun today but even that had moments of blah as well! I feel like I have taken on more than I can chew this year (you know the old 'bite off more than you can chew, then chew like mad!') However amid much discussion on upcoming events I was strong and said no to organising a club event that I had no part in setting up. I think those who tell people we will do these things - can take on the organisation - I certainly don't feel like I need any more to do! Anyway I still feel guilty as it only means it will get passed onto some other busy person who already does much for the club - it's not really right is it? Do you find there are people who tell you they want to help but only on the fourth Thursday of the month and so long as it does not involve the colour orange! Get real people - either help or don't but don't add a million provisos and make it even more work for others to organise your 'help'! Anyway I must be feeling blah as I had not planned to rant so today.

I took this photo of my cushion covers hanging on the washing line. I took the photo because they looked so happy flapping on the line in the nice autumn sunshine! It also made me smile because now I don't have to look at them looking filthy and thinking when will I get around to washing those covers? ... like I have been for the last four weeks! I don't know why things seem so overwhelming sometimes.
I finished this dress yesterday so that is good. I am not starting anything new until I finish the table runner I started ages ago. I have the backing fabric and thread to quilt it with so have no excuse to finish it. It will give me permission to be excited about our upcoming trip as I am making it for a gift. I hope I have enough energy to make some more gifts as I would prefer not to purchase gifts for my family as making them something would be so much more preferable and pleasurable!

I started thinking about a new quilt last night in the middle of the night. I am really interested in all things vintage and how woman used to live so that is going to be the theme for this quilt. That's probably all I can say about it for now as this quilt will only be a thought in my journal for the next while. But while it is still a thought it means I don't have to be anxious to finish it. Plus it is pleasurable to think about this quilt and what I am going to use to make it, etc. It is like a soft quilt in my mind that makes me feel happy even though nothing exists of it yet. *sigh*
A few things have pointed me in this direction, including the starting of sewing clothes again. Sewing clothes has lead back to my interest in vintage clothes. I remembered this pattern which I bought at an op shop while in second year at university.
I loved this pattern - I should have made it then - I would have stood more chance of fitting into it. Anyway I think I will still make it one day. (that should be pronounced as one word i.e. 'one day' = 'wuuunday'... it is very overused in my vocabulary).

Don't the ladies look happy on the pattern cover? Who is the lady waving at... perhaps her beau is in the crowd at the function she is attending? Where does one go, that you wear short brown gloves? These and other deep and meaningful stuff passing through my mind...and all the other things you didn't want to know about me...

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Raffle Quilt (cont.)....

The guilts must have set in or otherwise its the looming deadline, but I have done some more on the TQ raffle quilt. I bought some more fabric on Friday at QuiltCraft in Margaret Street. I do realise now I got pieces bigger than I needed but I think we should be able to use the left-over fabric to make a lucky door prize for the Open Day or perhaps the Qld Quilters picnic, which we are hosting next year.
Anyway it was a nice coincidence to go to QuiltCraft on Friday as it was Cotton Club day and I hadn't realised so I scored a cuppa and got to catch up with some quilting buddies I haven't seen for a while and see their luscious quilts. There are some very productive ladies in that group. I wish they would join Toowoomba Quilters and display their quilts in our show - some are absolute knock-outs. One lady in particular does the most exquisite needle-turn applique (& actually finishes her quilts!)

Today I pieced these pinwheels - not as perfect as I would like but I think they will do. The photo colours aren't quite true - the pinwheels are orange in colour.

I also trialled these hearts. I have not finished the raw edge off. I am vaguely hoping someone might take these home with them on Tuesday and finish them before Saturday when we get together to work some more on the quilt. Anyway if no-one can take them home, we will do them on Saturday. I thought it best to finish the raw edge after re-joining the heart as that way if there is a little wiggle in the joins then it may be camouflaged with the blanket-stitch or sating stitch or whatever.
A note for anyone involved in the design of this quilt - I have made these blocks 6" square (finished). We had planned 10" before we adjusted the size. However on checking the other day, the template is for a 6" block and I decided it would be easier to leave it that size than adjust it. Plus the hope is that we have another narrow row lower on the quilt and it should balance or reflect that one.
On the homefront - I have made a lovely corned silverside with beans, corn and spuds, an apple cake type dessert and have now just realised that there is now only two of us home for dinner (instead of the usual four) - I hope Mr D is hungry! - whoops just burned the spuds - shouldn't blog while the stove is on without at least putting on a timer!

My clever husband...

Hubby won lots of prizes at the Toowoomba Show for his photography this year. Also got Champion Image for one of his digital images - so he gets a ribbon!

He even got his photo in the Chronicle on Friday -

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Lubley, lubley day...

I had a great day - very relaxing and calming.

I had a great night last night at the Gardam's opening night/ VIP night. Also spent time with the girls at Swish and it still didn't disappoint! Great food, lovely wine.

Gardam's was also heaps of fun - lots of faces I knew - still a novelty to someone from Brisbane! Also great champers, music and food. Lots of lucky door prizes but my lucky streak was not working last night and I didn't win anything.... and on top of it all first pick at sale price fabric.... yummm!

Today hubby went to the Toowoomba Show to help the Toowoomba Photographic Society and to take photos so it was a quiet day for me (show holiday - yeah!)

I spent the day working on this pattern. The great thing is that the books arrived from Amazon through the week so I was able to refer to this whenever I wanted to check anything..... I know what ease-stitch is, but where exactly do you sew it, on the seam line, inside??? so it was great to have a reference to refresh with. I took it slowly and carefully and now have the bodice and sleeves done. The next step is to attach the waistband and skirt. I am really happy at how it is going.

It really does help to take care and be careful in the preparation of the pieces, to take care in the sewing and the marking - I feel like it is all coming together. Hopefully I will finish it this week-end and make a really successful dress!

At Gardam's I purchased a clapper and in conjunction with the tailor's ham, I have much more success with my sewing - pressing truly is the key! Like most people I dislike ironing and avoid it at best I can but I am learning that there is a difference to pressing compared to ironing has been a revelation. Having the right tools makes it heaps easier - and results in a professional finish!

I bought two fabrics last night. This one is a silk that I plan to make a top with.

The other fabric (which is impossible to photograph or scan) is a black jersey with a pattern of gold concentric circles. I have enough of that I may even make a dress from it perhaps the short sleeve version of this pattern.
Then at the end of the day I had a phone call form an old mate - Fi (not the one exactly on this web reference but keep reading - the WW leader!)- always great to talk to an old gold friend! (new friends are silver, old friends are gold...)

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Keeping up ...

I seem to be running around in ever decreasing circles lately. The thing which usually slides at these times are house cleaning and bill paying. I have started to catch-up (do you ever?) with the cleaning but wonder at living with men sometimes. I am not a perfectionist house keeper but eeewwwhhh. I found an apple sticker on the toilet floor. Now which of the men in the house was in the toot, eating an apple? Like I said eeewwwhhh! The bills were caught up yesterday. I missed gym so I could spend two hours sorting all the paper on the desk and paying bills. I was late with two - very annoying as one is a credit card so I know it will incur a fee!!!


Some of the ladies at TQ were discussing the care of quilts - or lack of care by people presented with quilts. Now I have a number of quilts in use in the house and also cushions I have stitched/ patchworked, but I am afraid when they are dirty I do just throw them in the washing machine, and they bleach in the winter sun on my bed as I don't draw the curtains during the day. Also ...gasp... the dog sleeps on all of them. Yesterday he was napping on this cushion. (that ball of hair on the cushion is the dog btw!) At least he was on the back side of the cushion, but maybe that is because the other side was too dirty for him!

I do feel strongly that quilts should be used. If they are 'precious' hang them on the wall or put them on the guest bed (if you are lucky enough to have one). Only give serviceable machine washable quilts to kids and if you see that the quilt you have given to a child has faded from washing - be happy - be really happy! - it means they love it and use it - a great compliment to any quilter!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Just a rolling along...

Not had such a great couple of days - broke a tooth (and can't get into Dentist until the end of the month), have got a uti (if you don't know what it is, you don't need to know). At least I got into the Doctor's quickly and got some antibiotics. However I find that a Doctors appointment is magic for making me feel better...why do you always start feeling better while you are waiting to see the Doctor. Anyway the worst thing is, it is making me feel guilty as I have taken the day off work and I know there is stuff to be done there. I nearly had a bad accident at work yesterday running to the loo, so I don't need a repeat of that!
I just reread that & found a typo 'quilty' instead of 'guilty'! Freudian slip I suppose - however I am feeling guilty enough that I am finding it hard to do anything quilty today!

This is a photo of what I call a Japanese windflower which is flowering in my garden at the moment. I love this plant and thought I had lost it to the drought, so I am very happy to see it back - it must be tougher than it looks!

I am feeling a little better, so I am still planning to go to my Personal Training session today - I think I can hold off for half an hour betweeen visits to the loo. Anyway luckily I am trained by Gwen and she should be pretty understanding if I bolt in the middle of the session. I have already done one PT session this week. I am aiming for five weeks of two sessions a week instead of the usual one session. I am feeling the fittest I have felt for a long time and I want to capitalise on that and get as fit as I can before I take a 5-6 week break in the middle of the year when we go OS.
This week I have done - Monday - Pilates, Tuesday - Power Fit (weights/cardio class), Wednesday - PT session and Body step. Today I will do a PT session and tomorrow I hope to attend Kimax. Probably nothing will happen exercise-wise over the week-end.

I have a busy day on Saturday - TQ meeting and a lesson at Gardams in the afternoon. I have purchased a pattern and the fabric to make a jacket so I am going along to find out how to make it look professional, bound butoonholes, etc. Should be fun!

It's Caity's birthday today -Happy Birthday Caity!