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

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Sewing for the kids

While still busy, life on the farm is settling into a bit more of a regular routine. That means a little more time in The Palace for me. July was to be my month for sewing some bits and pieces for the kiddies. I didn't get through the big list of ideas I had set myself, and I was sidetracked from time to time by other needs/requests. I've caught up on a few things in the last week or so (and it's only nearly the end of August!). 
Lily finally received the baby basket I was wanting to give her for her second birthday —
It isn't quite finished as it has an attachable hood that I haven't quite completed. Her babies needed somewhere to sleep so she got it as is!
This is another Twig + Tale pattern that I've had my eye on for a while. The biggest hurdle for me was working out what to use as the interfacing/batting. Even though this is a NZ company, the products they suggested weren't available. I settled for Soft and Stable for the 'batting' and some Buckram for the iron-on interfacing. I had to keep in mind that the products needed to be turned through so needed to be flexible enough to do that.
Making it was interesting, with an extra step that seemed tricky but made so much sense. You know how when you make a bag with the lining, the lining is loose and floppy inside the bag? Here we turned the baby basket inside out again, sewed the seam allowances of the main and the lining together, turned it back out and wow you end up with the bottom of the lining attached. 
At this stage I was wondering if this was really going to work?!
At this stage I was wondering if this was really going to work! But it did —
Very clever, especially with children's play; I had visions of the lining in and out and driving everyone batty!

That out of the way, I finished the 7 snakes for Odie's windows, keeping the light out of his room. I'd done 5, had a break for a few weeks, took a deep breath and completed the last of them. 
Trust him to have a corner bedroom with lots of windows - I've just worked out that's about 5.5 metres of window! Each snake is 33 inches long and has a flap to hang down and exclude the light.

Also requested lately were a couple of swing tags for the younger twins' backpacks. They both wanted identical bags, and now they can see which is their own bag. I used scraps of soft and stable for these and a bit of vinyl on the back in case ED wants to insert phone numbers, etc on the label.

A couple more cot sheets. This has used the last of my stockpiled large pieces of brushed cotton so I'm happy about that. 

And a final request, more slippers; this pair is for Odie and should see him through to next winter when he can wear his cousins' cast offs!

YD has been knitting too. Isn't this hat for her young fellow cute? 
I'm more than ready to get back into my quilting again now - any kiddie sewing not completed will have to go onto next winter's sewing list (and maybe I should start a bit earlier!)!
'til next time, 
happy stitches,

Sunday, August 9, 2020

Friday Night With Friends

I was pleased to be able to take part in Friday's virtual sew along. The last few times there has been a Friday night event I've had other things on and I look forward to seeing who else sewed along with me this time.
I had an exciting time this week, starting a new project. It's one I've had in the pipeline for a wee while but  I wouldn't let myself start it until I'd finished the applique for Foxley Village.
Wings and Pretty Things is one of Michelle Ridgeway's designs. It's not an official pattern but she has kindly shared her notes with me. Both her top and Fiona's top are at the quilting stage so I am far behind!
I've collected up a few scraps from earlier projects and hope that there will be enough of them to complete the quilt!
On Friday night I continued on with the centre block. There are flowers in the corners —
After Saturday evening as well, I'd completed the first corner —
Earlier in the week I had made the Dresden centre. I machine sewed the blades then handstitched them to the background fabric. I still have to make a decision on what colour circle I'll put in the centre of the Dresden plate.

Progress so far —
I had a few evenings where I didn't have anything prepped to stitch so pulled out my 'Life is Beautiful' stitching. I pull this out at times like this, between projects, etc. After more years than I can remember, I'm about halfway through the stitcheries. It's very slow progress!
Thank you to Cheryll for hosting us for Friday Night with Friends. To visit her Gone Stitchin' blog and see who else sewed along, click *here*.
'til next time,
happy stitches,

Friday, August 7, 2020

Down on the farm

Cows and calves, calves and cows, calving cows, cows, calves —
(Warning  - photo heavy post and no quilts included)
Get the idea?!
Yes, it's that time of the year. We've been at it for about three weeks now, and have about a third of the herd in. So far I have just over 50 keeper calves I'm raising.
Yesterday we had a set of twins born; smallish but both healthy and Mum was doing fine —
It's a great time of the year for the kiddies, too. It's nice when they visit and get into the calfshed —
We've been fortunate to have had a mild winter. In the earlier photo you can see how much grass we have grown after the drought. The below photos were taken mid-March. Don't be fooled by the tinge of green you can see; we were in a dire situation.
Our main dam out the back —
Luckily the drought broke in May; the same dam now, fuller than it has been for a very long time.
Since then we've had our annual rainfall in three months. Several floods. The worst was just as we were starting calving a couple of weeks ago. It caused a lot of mess —
There's a bridge under there somewhere!
Of course after the waters recede, a big clean up is needed.
Luckily we had a good band of helpers and within a week all the fences, etc were operational again.
And we're fortunate, we didn't get as much rain as areas closer to the coast, and I understand there are still farms under water. We always drain pretty quickly after a flood and the water doesn't stay around long enough to kill the grass.
Ok so I warned you it was photo heavy and non-quilty related! If you got to the end, thanks!!
'til next time
Happy stitches,