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

Tuesday, April 27, 2021

The Gruffalo

The Palace was taken over by Gruffalos last week. 
World Book Day was to be celebrated at the younger twins' daycare on Friday so this Ganma offered to make them their outfits.
After all, as I said to ED, it's what Ganmas live for, to make the grandies cute outfits! 
("I'll remember you said that!" said YD.)

The two are into the story of The Gruffalo bigtime at the moment so that was the logical place to start. I'd already decided what pattern I was going to use.
I have made Pathfinder vests before and knew there was an 'animal add-on' I could purchase with instructions and adaptations for varying animal ears, tails, etc.
I did need to buy some brown polar fleece for the outer, but was determined that the rest of the vests would come from my extensive 'clothes sewing' scrap cupboard. I found two brushed cottons that would be suitable to use - one a 'kilt' ED had for a Scottish study at Primary School and the other some offcuts from something I don't recognise so I think those may have come by way of Mum?
I only just managed to get all the pieces out of the 'kilt' fabric, having to join one small piece. This is all I had left so I think that was a pretty good win!
Making two at once put the pressure on but I was able to chain sew and they were (both) finished in time for Book Day 😀
Here you can see 'his terrible claws' —
'Purple prickles all over his back'. I decided just to knot lengths of yarn for the prickles —
I used Soft and Stable for the ears and the horns, which has kept them nice and light and of course means they stick up nicely —

So that was last week's efforts, hopefully I'll have more to share before the end of the month!
'til next time,
happy stitches,

Sunday, April 11, 2021

A social weekend —

This weekend for me was far more social than sewcial!
It started pretty well with Friday Night with Friends, kindly hosted by Cheryll of stitchingcubbyhole. Although I got home quite late after work and some shopping, I joined in with cyber friends and got a little bit of block five of The Santa, The Tree, The Turkey and Me done.
I decided to concentrate on the cute wee bird and made a wee faux pas early in the night which needed some unstitching. I discovered the beak was supposed to be sewn on top of the body, rather than underlapping it. (You can see in the second photo how nicely the body fits over the beak!!!)
I continued with it on Saturday night and feel like I'm making some progress. 
But still have plenty left to do!
I must say, I am enjoying the extra evening stitching time now that daylight saving has finished. As it's darker earlier, tea is slightly earlier and I'm settled into my stitching chair earlier!

As I 'should have been' at Scrub Stitchin retreat this weekend, these two trouble makers, Chooky and Sue called me during the evening.
A birthday party was in full swing so they couldn't hear a thing I said, but it was lovely to see them. I'm booked in for next year already. We'll be flying across the Tasman by then!

Yesterday I worked as we had a class at The Country Yard. Remember the bag I finished last month? Well we were running the class for it — 
Everyone did well, making good progress and have gone home with homework to do. We will start assembling the bags at the next class in a few weeks time. Then hopefully I'll have some photos to show you of the beautiful bags they're all making!

Yesterday was actually a fabulous day for the farm. Contrary to the forecast which predicted 5 mls of rain, we had over 75mls (3"). It absolutely bucketed down. From the dry (and cosy) classroom I fretted for YD and her family (including the toddler boy) who had a total of 6 netball/hockey events for the day (grading day) and also worried over the MOML, recovering from pneumonia, who had gone into town to watch SIL play rugby. We've had a dry summer/autumn and this will keep the grass growing and the cows milking for a bit longer.
A couple of nice photo opportunities first thing this morning —

Today I tagged along when ED took the kiddies to the local Quarry Gardens, gardens created in an old quarry. After yesterday's rain they were all looking lovely and lush.
These photos were all taken before a visit to a café and a subsequent sugar hit - whew!!

By the time I got home there was little time for serious sewing - so as you can see, lots more social than sewcial! At this stage I have some sewing time scheduled for this week 😀
'til next time,
happy stitches,

Thursday, April 8, 2021

A goal and a finish for April

This time last year I was making Xavier's Tractors and Trucks Buggy Barn quilt which I gifted to him in July —
Because I used a different layout to that given in the book, and because of the method of making the blocks, I had 3 blocks left over.
I had thought that I may use them to make a quilt for my (great) nephew, but in the meantime they were stored away. He recently spent a few nights in Starship (NZ's children's hospital) and the quilt idea came to mind again.
So I've pulled the blocks out and have decided that creating a quilt from them will be my One Monthly Goal for the month. I've started having a play, using a few leftovers for a start —
I was so excited last week when I finished my March goal and wrote about it in my last post, but forgot to link up to Patty's linky list!!! When I realised, it was too late - haha oh well, maybe this month I'll do everything right!
Thank you Patty of Elm Street Quilts for this gentle encouragement to help us achieve our quilty dreams.

Back in February I made a pair of Wayfarer shoes for young Odie. At the time YD and I dreamed up an idea for the next pair. I doublechecked with her recently and yes, she does still want the next pair.
This pair started with an old oilskin —
And some scraps of polar fleece I used to make myself a jacket years ago.
A cute little finish!
Turning the shoes through at the end —
The technique used is similar to that used when making burrito style pillowcases. Which reminded me of one I'd made earlier in the year and not yet shared - an early make for next Christmas! This one will go to the same family as these two, made a couple of years ago.

If I'm going to link up to One Monthly Goal, I'd better sign off now!
'til next time,
happy stitches,

Thursday, April 1, 2021

End Of March in April

Oops, my final post for March has become my first post for April! A bit of childminding lately and a last minute dinner invite at ED's last night means the month finished before I was ready for it!
Never mind, here I am :-)
Katems, who is still living here at the house (after living in a farm shed for at least 9 years) celebrated her 18th birthday recently in a basket under my scrappy Christmas blocks.
My One Monthly Goal for March was to complete the rest of the blocks for my scrappy Christmas Ornament quilt...and guess what, I actually did it!
I know 12 more blocks wasn't a major ask but I wasn't sure what I would be able to fit in, and when.
As it turned out I was super-motivated to sew these blocks and an afternoon spent planning and cutting for the month soon resulted in all the blocks made!
The last block. The cute fabric in the centre is one I found in amongst a whole lot of fabric I brought home from Mum's when she moved. She used it to make Christmas stockings for her grandies when they were little. So it's been around a while —
Here are all the ornament blocks for the quilt —
And here they are with the random tree block I made in my 31 days of blocks back in December (when this madness started). As I don't want to have to start another quilt to use the tree block, it is going into this one!
I completed the blocks several weeks ago and I thought I may have got a bit of joining started but I only got as far as laying them out on the spare bed. They still need a bit of rearranging —
Thank you Patty for hosting One Monthly Goal. I'm pleased I was able to join in at both ends of the month!

My evening stitching time has been limited for some reason, but last night I put the final stitch in block four of The Santa, The Tree, The Turkey and Me (by Anni Downs). Block Five is already here so that will be be pulled out soon....
Please excuse the blatant lack of pressing before I took these photos!
In other news, I have made a few more star blocks for the Scrappy Star Adventure at work.

I competed some more 9-patch and churn dash blocks for my Omigosh! quilt this month —
And I nearly forgot about these two which were hidden under a pile on the ironing board - one more for my Omigosh! and one more basket block for my lockdown quilt —
All in all, 29 blocks made in March. That will boost my tally for the 350 blocks project - in fact it will more than double my tally so that's exciting :-)

A couple more photos; following on from my last post showing our autumn bounty, I just have to share this photo of young Xavier, grapes in one hand, feijoa in the other - Life is Bliss!
Earlier in the day; what is it about small children and puddles?! —
And another day, the MOML got a bit ambitious on the quad and needed my help with the winch to help him get unstuck (big boys and puddles) —

'til next time,
Happy Easter! 
and happy stitches,