Sunday 28 September 2008

(Another) retail confession

Quilter Going Bananas suggested I should 'fess up on my purchases on our quilting trip last week. I feel Mum & I were reasonably self-restrained, despite the considerable temptations! We bought these fabrics ('Flea Market Fancy' by Denyse Schmidt & 'Summer in the City' by Urban Chiks)...
... to make up this pattern ('Candy' by Melly & Me) ...
... some 'Freshcut' by Heather Bailey, just because (!) ...
... a layer-cake-friendly 'Figgy Pudding' pattern by Figtree Quilts ...
... and a couple of fat quarters to add to my Dear Jane stash. These are from a beautiful new Moda reproduction range called 'Collection for a Cause'.
Weren't we well-behaved?!

Saturday 27 September 2008

Fancy a virtual tour of one of Australia's loveliest quilt shops?

After a very busy last week of school, my Mum (who is visiting for a few days) and I treated ourselves to a visit to The Home Patch, owned by the lovely Anni Downs, designer of Hatched & Patched designs. Oh, what treasures lie beyond this little green door! Unfortunately, Anni was away in Tasmania doing a workshop & many of her most recent samples were travelling with her, but Margaret, who was taking care of the store for the day, generously gave me permission to take some photos to show you all. So enjoy the tour!
Beautiful quilts line the walls ...
... here ...
... there ...
... and everywhere!
Luscious fabrics at every turn ...
Tempting bundles of loveliness tied up with bows ...
Freshcut fat quarters ...
Felts in every colour imaginable ...
... and felt designs from Anni ...
Sweet dancing dollies ...
Some Hatched & Patched needlepunch originals
... and more samples of Anni's whimsical stitchery & applique designs ...
Overwhelmed with creative inspiration we dragged ourselves from this wonderful shop, returned home & started planning our next projects! What better way to spend the day?!

Wednesday 24 September 2008

Walk like an Egyptian!

I have been helping to make costumes for the school musical, which has a decidedly Egyptian theme. Two performances down, two to go! It has been lots of fun. Joining a handful of other mothers, and taking on the task of making 150 costumes is a surefire cure for my perfectionist tendencies! There was some pretty rough sewing happening - LOL! By the end, my mantra had become: "If you can't see it from Row P, it will be just fine"! The costumes looked great en masse ... ... and the pure joy on the children's faces as they dressed up and performed made it all worthwhile.

Monday 22 September 2008

C is for cherries, crochet & colour

Last week of school for us, & musical performance week. I have been helping with costume-making for the last two school terms and tomorrow is the big dress rehearsal, so most of my sewing time this week will be costume-driven. I will leave you with the creative goodness of others:1. Blanket-WIP, 2. Suede and leather flower brooch - Cherry ripe, 3. Cherry top, 4. Untitled, 5. crochet skirt, 6. lille_maus, 7. Minny Muu Baby Quilt, 8. Bolsa Envelope Cherry, 9. cherries jubilee pillow, 10. wool eater, 11. Sweet Cherry Pie Lola Apron, 12. Farmer's Market Fabric by Sandi Henderson, 13. Cherry Insa, 14. napkin with button cherries, 15. A colorful weekend!, 16. Anne Claire Petit crochet wide Stripe Fox Since I'm talking colour, be sure to visit oh, fransson! and wonder at the evolution of her amazing Paintbox quilt, here, here , here and here.  I will lose sleep tonight thinking about this quilt - so, so clever & inspiring! May your week be creative, Bloom.

Thursday 18 September 2008


My 'Blue Wren's Nest' bag bears a remarkable resemblance to two previous bags I have made. Anyone would think they were sisters. It would seem pom-poms are a dominant gene!
Thank you for all your lovely comments on my new bag, and enormous thanks to Natalie Lymer for such a sweet pattern. I think I may just keep this one for myself as a bag for my stitching. It is very 'little girly', but hey, surely there is a little girl inside every big girl after all?!

Tuesday 16 September 2008

A stitching equation?

Three little Cinderberry Stitches blue wrens ...

... PLUS my favourite vintage pom poms & a little green glass button ...

... EQUALS this:

I did alter Natalie's pattern for the bag to make it a little larger and opted for a single handle. I constructed it much the same way as my 'Blossie Bag' in this post.

Monday 15 September 2008

Another weekend flies by

The only stitching done over the weekend for me was just one solitary little Dear Jane block ...
... and the smallest bit of progress on my version of Anni Downs' 'Tim's Things' quilt:
I could tell you a whole lot that I learnt about violas (the musical kind) or perhaps the theme of 'resilience' in the movie Stuart Little, having coaxed my 12-year-old through two more school assignments, but I think my time and yours would be spent much more productively by popping over to see these girls at Princess Martha. They both stitch & quilt the most divine things, so be sure to welcome these new kids to the (blogging) block. Have a great week, Bloom.

Saturday 13 September 2008

B is for birdies, babushkas & bloom

A little Mosaic Maker magic today. I have a bit of a thing for birdies, so I am loving Natalie Lymer's latest bird designs, & especially her free Blue Wren's Nest pattern! Gennine has the most beautiful illustrations of birds here and here, and TskTsk has both birdies and babushkas covered delightfully on her blog. 1. Garland with russian dolls, 2. angels designed and made by rosalie quinlan, 3. birds and blooms screenprint (gocco), 4. Janelle and Snøfrid, 5. babushka lineup, 6. mini quilt swap, 7. Bloom, 8. Springtime in summer, 9. Featured in decor8!!!, 10. bird, 11. Babushkas with Pop Garden fabrics!, 12. Birds, 13. Matroschka, 14. Bird tags., 15. Embroidery detail, 16. Berries for Breakfast

Wednesday 10 September 2008

A red and white sort of night

My Saturday night was spent working on May Britt's Sewing Bag & watch the Sydney Swans vs North Melbourne elimination final. The Swannies got up and the bag is finished! Despite the champagne-induced bravado of my last post, I went to the shops on Saturday morning & bought some buttons for the bag! And I liked Satu's idea of adding handles. The choice of red and white for the bag was not actually in honour of the Sydney Swans (!), but more of an attempt to get a Scandinavian feel in honour of May Britt. A huge thankyou to her for her free pattern for this bag.
Go the Red & White!

Friday 5 September 2008

Out, self-doubt!

Have made a start on May Britt's Stitchers' Angel Sewing Bag. I've decided on redwork, using DMC variegated floss #115. Can't find red flower buttons though, so will have to improvise!Happy Friday night! I'm off to enjoy some 'improvisation tonic' aka a glass of champagne - who knows what my flowers will end up like!
I googled 'improvise' to see if I could find a clever quote & came up with this from Sylvia Plath, American poet & novelist:
“And by the way, everything in life is writable about if you have the outgoing guts to do it, and the imagination to improvise. The worst enemy to creativity is self-doubt.”
So here I am, writing about not very much, improvising just a little, & fighting the self-doubt! Wishing you a very creative weekend, Bloom.

Thursday 4 September 2008

Stitchers' Angels worldwide

There are some wonderful versions of Stitchers' Angel projects appearing all over the world. You can keep an eye on the progress of some of them at the Stitchers' Angel Flickr group. Very inspiring!

Wednesday 3 September 2008

Easy-peasy bag pockets

I usually use this method to do pockets inside my bags. It is easy and quick! Prepare lining fabric for your bag. For the 'Blossie Bag' in this tutorial, I cut my lining 9.5" x 21.75". Cut a pocket panel from a contrasting fabric, 8.5" by the width of the lining.

Cut a rectangle of medium-weight fusible pellon, 4" by the width of the lining. Press the pocket panel in half. Place the Pellon on one half of the pocket panel.

Fold the pocket panel over the Pellon & press into place.

Pin the pocket 6.5" from the top of the lining, raw edges towards the top.

Stitch the pocket to the lining using 0.25" seam.

Flip the pocket panel up towards the top of the lining & pin in place.

Topstitch the pocket 0.25" from the bottom.

Stitch the sides of the pocket to the lining, just to keep it in place.

Stitch a series of vertical lines on the pocket panel at desired widths, to fit pens, mobile, iPod etc.

Fit lining to the outer bag & complete as described in the previous tutorial. The inside will look a bit like this:

Hope this makes sense. Again, please email me with any questions.
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