My quilting thoughts and inspirations sprinkled with a glimpse of life down on the farm

Monday, November 29, 2010

My visit to a big city!

As I hinted at in my last post, I had a wonderful weekend in Melbourne. For a country girl who lives on a metal road though it was all a bit mind boggling at first!! People, people, people everywhere - luckily I was with friends who had visited before and have a sense of geographical nous I will never have (it's hereditary - I blame my father).
We shopped until we dropped on the first day (although that's a lie in my case, as I think I was still shell shocked at being there and just bought a few touristy things) - and then I had my first-ever train ride out to meet my son (BB) and DIL when they had finished work.

How glorious to see them - it's my first visit to Australia, for a variety of reasons we have just never got over there and have relied on them coming back to NZ to visit us.

We spent the next day and a half at the Australian Quilt Market, which is put on for retailers each year. I had a lovely time accompanying Kerryn (The Country Yard) and looking at all the lovely things we could bring back to the shop. And so awesome to meet so many of the designers - we found them all really nice and helpful. Of course we couldn't buy everything but we did order a fair amount of stuff  - it will be fun waiting for the postie and rediscovering the treasures.
A plus at the AQM was a quilt display by Eileen Campbell and Mariya Waters. Absolutely gorgeous quilts; I recognised a lot of them from magazine articles from the past but to see them 'for real' was an absolute privilege.
My photos don't do them justice (And for some reason I only have pics of Eileen Campbell's work)—
Pelican Twilight, by Eileen Campbell, won Quilt of The World in 2002
One of these is Iron Lace by Eileen Campbell. Sorry not sure of the other.
Appliqué detail
Garden Memories of Japan By Eileen Campbell
Medieval Inspirations by Eileen Campbell.

I also was able to catch up with an old school friend, which was so great; we didn't have nearly enough time together (I feel another trip coming on!) and saw BB and DIL again on Sunday afternoon. Absolutely fabulous!!!! I didn't get nearly enough photos of the sights and sounds of Melbourne, but here a few that I snapped and actually turned out.......
Wasn't expecting this - all of a sudden the nightsky lit up with
these pillars putting on an awesome display.
There was a fabulous Christmas display with lights, music and fun surprises, somewhere in the city (!); we were lucky as its first night was our last night there.

Kerryn, Gina and myself

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Ups and Downs

What a week it has been; full of ups and downs.

The down side of course has been listening, watching, waiting for news of the 29 miners trapped down the Pike River mine, near Greymouth in NZ's South Island. Unfortunately a rescue was not possible and after several more large explosions, we are now mourning their deaths.

Shirley of dyeing2design of Rangiora has put the call out for heart blocks to make into quilts for the affected families. Up here in Northland, Leeanne has suggested that we put a quilt together to send down to Shirley... so....calling all Northlanders (or anyone else who is interested)...please send a block to either myself or Leeanne. Please email one of us for our address details.
Please make your blocks to the following dimensions - 

  • Cream background (calico is fine)
  • 6 1/2 " unfinished size (They will be 6" finished)
  • Pieced or appliquéd hearts - any colours or patterns

The Ups of my week have been my fabulous visit to Melbourne. More details on that later.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Happiness is...

Happiness is.....
...relaxing on a hot day.....
(as happy as a pig in mud) new SewEzi Table to go with my new machine...
...all the first blocks completed for the MOML's Christmas quilt...
..bags!! Off to Melbourne for the weekend!
Attending the Retailers' Quilt Market with Kerryn (The Country Yard)
AND will get to see my son and DIL
(big happiness)
Prepped stitcheries all ready to sew over the weekend, if I
don't talk too much, that is!!
...have a good one everyone, I surely will!!!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Stitching Around the Block

A few weeks ago I asked for friends to take part in the Hugs-n-Kisses Stitching Round the Block fun (see my side-bar for the link). We ended up with two 'teams' of 4 from that plea... some of my real-life-friends (as opposed to my bloggy-friends who I have met through blogging.... what do we call them all? In the skin friends, virtual friends?? And what about those friends who started off as bloggy friends and then you meet 'properly'  - are they real life virtual friends??? Sigh, I'm not sure where this is heading....!!)
Anyway, some of my friends are giving me ALL the blame for them getting involved.... but I did not make them push the SEND button after they said 'yes, they would love to take part...'  ANYWAY, inspite of it all, I think we are having a lot of fun with this project; there are a few challenges, like tiny hexagons, but we are learning new skills and mastering them!!
Here is my choice of fabric and the first block. 
I sent it to Leanne, and this (below) is what she has done so far....
OHH it was so exciting to see what she is up to!!
Janis sent me her block, here is all I am showing of what I have been up to on hers.....
I'm looking forward to seeing more and working on Leanne's and Nicky's blocks.

I thought I would show the fruit of my labours this spring..... we went out the back today to  vaccinate the weaner calves. Here's all 102 of them (plus 15 at home, still on milk)—

...with a touch of ginger as my
zinger colour
 I enjoy looking at all the different shades of brown, thinking what a neat quilt they would make...
I have worked out why my brain was working overtime at the start of this post, when I started rambling about bloggy friends - it is because I was extremely brave and drunk this just before I leapt on the computer.... ED is now at home and she decided I needed to try her smoothie!! I don't think I have ever drunken anything so green, but it actually wasn't too bad!!
Now, while my brain and body is working overtime from that healthy snack, I'd best go and get some work done!!
Happy stitching everyone,

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Wednesday's Flowers on Thursday

In the weekend I went down to Auckland to Calico Christmas, the annual quilt exhibition of the Auckland Quilt Guild.  I had a fabulous day looking at all the quilts on display, and also did a little shopping. I bought some new fabric for my hexie-flowers and here it is sewn into Wednesday's 3 new blooms.
The fabrics in the bottom two are the new ones - cute — I just love those blues!!
 I ended up with only a couple of photos from the exhibition - obviously I was really taken with appliqué type beauties!! Leeann has lots of really good photos on her blog.

Some of you may have read this post about the MOML in a quilt shop and the reproduction fabric he impulse-bought.

I have decided to make this up for him for Christmas.  Here are the first blocks and how they will be arranged. There will be 9 of these, to make a lap quilt.
So far so good - this looks like it will come together quite quickly, the beauty of jelly rolls, I guess.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Hexie and Horse

After a late night (meeting) last night and 100s of follow-up phone calls this morning I decided to chill out and have a quiet afternoon ....
I did two things I haven’t had a chance to do for a while — make a hexie flower and ride my horse….I thoroughly enjoyed both activities!! (my first new hexie-flower for quite a while L)
Don't you just love it when you can combine two interests!
I’ve also finished my Quilter’s Poem, something to look at when I don’t feel like cleaning windows and just want to sew!

I’m still working on Block One of the friendship Stitchalong I’ve joined – I hope to complete it tonight and send it on SOON!!
Until next time, happy stitching everyone, and thank you for visiting, 

Monday, November 1, 2010

Exhibition and Challenge revealed

 On Saturday The Country Yard (My most favourite quilt shop ever) had it's annual exhibition. We had an awesome day with lots of people coming through enjoying themselves. I was busy being a helpful person so only managed a few photos...
The photos below help to show the atmosphere - relaxed and happy.

  All the quilts were on display in the house; I didn't take photos inside but Leeann did - you can see some fabulous photos on her blog here....

A little while ago I showed a sneak peak of my challenge quiltlet—
The criteria was to use at least 2 inches of the challenge fabric in an 8" x 10" sized quilt, using the first letter of your name as inspiration.

Being a scrappy sort of a person who tries to waste NOTHING, I decided the most relevant R-word for me was Remnants.
Here is my finished quiltlet. As you can see, I've made crumbs, maverick stars and foundation pieced flying geese - all out of scraps! LOTS of fun!!
The challenge fabric is the little blue floral at the front of the scrap basket.

WOW - here it is with the second prize!! Smiles all round!!
 Two other members of my round robin group made challenge quilts too —
Janis' Journal was full of photos of her quilts - very clever
Kerry's Kereru in a Kowhai Tree was just gorgeous!
- 3rd place!!
And changing the subject entirely,  here's a sneaky look at something to get you thinking about Christmas. It's from our Round Robin work so this is all I can show just now.

Have a good week everyone,