Monday, May 23, 2011

Bed time reading

This is my lot, reading in bed when I get the time, my husband has been away so here is his side of the bed covered with books, some cooking, some quilting. A few random ones just in case the mood strikes! I need to have them close to me! lined up like little soldiers !
I have recently read "Left Neglected", very good, could not put it down, like the other book by the same author "Still Alice". The author is Lisa Genova,  2 books well worth reading. Must see if she has written more.
Trying to find enthusiasm and passion for some projects, need to find energy for this, after a long day at work, labouring is such hard work sometimes, and then I don't get to keep the baby! pleased really as they are such hard work, and I need my beauty sleep...Peter would have a fit if I bought a baby home...

Sunday, May 22, 2011

UFOs - recapturing passion

No not unidentified flying objetcs, unfinished quilt objects/art pieces!
I have several, well a few less than last week, but still enough to keep me busy for a very long time. One is this cushion, I am donating it to the Coorparoo Quilters Exhibition, which is on June 4th &5th.
I have just finished quilting and binding the last of the flood relief quilts, thats my volunteering for this project over and done with - for the moment. Hooray!

Now to get on and work out which of the UFOs I am most passionate about and get it underway to being finished. There are some at the block stage, some needing quilting, one with some unquilting to be done! At the moment I need to be passionate about a project to do it justice, not to make a show stopper, but just to do it well and be happy with the finished piece. The flood quilts have helped to get the wheels of  my brain turning.
Being passionate about something that has been put in the cupboard for one reason or another can become difficult, we know that the piece is there, its in the back of our minds, especially when we start a new project - no matter how small. Then one day when you are doing a hunt for something else long lost in the depths of the room -there it is - a quilt top, once you were very passionate about it, but something better came along and it went to the bottom of the pile.

Now to recapture that passion and get motivated.

I promise not to start anything new till I have finished at least one large quilt from my cupboard.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011


After a week in Cairns with my mother I have come back rested and inspired. The vegetation in Queensland and more so in Cairns is vastly different from Tasmania where I spent the first 40 something years of my life! The Cairns Botanic gardens so different and lush and green.
There are large shiny leaves with remarkable shapes and colours. I am inspired to use these shapes in a quilt, maybe a sampler of leaves...

I also went on a helicopter ride - over reefs, islands and lots of blue water.
The snorkelling was fantastic - didn't have an underwater camera -sorry! my sister dragged me around by the hand when I got baffled with the snorkel, which made it worse as I got the giggles every time she held my hand - like crossing the road! then I got a face full of water.... In the end I got it and really enjoyed the relaxation, peace and serenity of the underwater world.
Such diverse colours and shapes under the water, so many fun fish, why have I never done this before? must go again soon.
Now to prepare the pieces for the Coorparoo Quilters Exhibition in a few weeks, and get cracking on my other unfinished pieces. Lots of cat hair to remove and hangers to sew on etc.

Friday, May 6, 2011


Todays post is about some flood relief quilts, I have machine quilted several for the Queensland Quilters , I am on my last one, someone has taken a lot of care with this quilt top. It has lovely batik fabrics, and is a type of sampler, lots of different block patterns, good piecing and good pressing. Whoever you are, you have done a good job. These fabrics are not cheap, and you have donated your time in making a lovely warm and cuddly quilt. It is a pleasure to quilt it. I am doing soft flowing lines in the blocks and a twirly vine up the sashings. Haven't worked out the border yet, but I will.
The purple thread gives a zing to these mostly warm orange blocks.
This is my bit of volunteering, a little more visible than doing school P&F things, which is a lot of work and not much thanks at the end - from some quarters.

Rewarding but sometimes hard work.
 My volunteering 'bones' comes from several sources in my family, my mother was on the school P&F, my great aunt did 'meals on wheels', one memorable Christmas my father and I did the Christmas day lunch, it was a bit spooky for a 12 yr old to wake up people at about 11am on xmas day to deliver their lunch.... It has made a lasting impression on me, so when I can't help put my hand up for a job that gives no financial reward, I have a little history, and will always remember that there are pepole worse off than me, and I can always make a difference with just a little effort.

I am just warming  myself up with this quilt, a masterpiece in the making is in my head...

Tuesday, May 3, 2011


At last I have finished this cushion!  it has been languishing in the cupboard for years, it started out  as part of a quilt, but the colours got changed a little and so did my idea!
Hand appliqued hand dyed, machine quilted - of course.

One of my groups Coorparoo Quilters is having an exhibition in June, and I needed to make
1.a mug bag -done even got a matching mug by pure chance!,
2. a place mat - done, 
3. cushion -now I have done the cushion too -hooray.
Might have to make a piece or 2 for the trade table- or maybe not, time is limited.

An exceptionally good day- gym, haircut, massage, sewing. It is almost pitch black in Brisbane, just a little after 4pm ( a big storm, well lotsof clouds, not much storm here)-sunshine state???? I think not.

Monday, May 2, 2011

Coloured paper

Yesterday I was given some used paper towel!
not just any paper towel, hand painted by a lovely friend.
Now what do I do with this?  I think now that I have ironed it to straighten it out, I may mull over the idea for a few days and then make a fantastic picture, as if I was making a quilt, but using paper and glue. I may even let my daughter do some zentangling on it!
The colours are vibrant, I also got some fun pages of art journal paper with great saturated colour. The Procion dyes give such great depth of colour.

How lucky am I to be given used paper towel!

Plenty of ideas to finish my quilts for the October QQ show- its never too late to start a quilt , but they must be finished on time. Unlike last year, a few lurking in the cupboard. Get off the computer and get sewing.... left overs for dinner after a lovely night last night with friends and family for a celebration of our son's 18th birthday.
How lucky we are to have such lovely friends and family.

My Hollis Chatelain class has me buzzing with ideas, and inspiration. Now to find the energy. Wish I was going to Coffs Harbour for a few days of uninterrupted sewing.

Now to get off into my sewing room and finish some stuning quilts....

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Inspired by thread

After my class with Hollis Chatelain I am well inspired.
Interestingly I ran a very much shortened version of this type of class at a recent Quensland Quilters meeting.
I will now - after cleaning the house for the dinner guests- do some serious sewing this week. There is so little time and so much to do.
The quilt line is so much a big part of the quilt, stippling all over is so hmmm, thread colours are amazing, and can change the look of a quilt so quickly, and a fun design can thrill and excite!
Now to order some threads, I have some Superior Thread colour charts, and want some more exciting colours -even flourescents. I did do  big order when I quilted a fantastic piece for a QQ raffle quilt a few years ago. Now I need more.
The shops in greater Brisbane only stock king Tut and some Bottom Line (inthe superior range) -not the full range of colours, and not even a  small stock of any of the rest of the Superior  range -sadly.
I wonder if they realise that there is more than King Tut? I find it too thick and unwieldy, and the colours are dull.  Bottom Line can excite and is so fine it can bring zing to my quilts. Also sadly I have been told that it is "bobbin fill" and "you can't use it on the top". Ha ha , I will use what I want and you just  lost my business..

Now after that grumble, a picture of Blue Dream, it won Best Domestic Machine quilting here  in Queensland a few years ago. I dreamed this quilt after seeing some fantastic red glass sculptures in a hospital where I worked. A bright, fun lively and heavily machine quilted piece of silk. I did upset  few people as I sent off a picture of a plain piece of fabric for my entry picture to the exhibition committee. The folds are a bit evident, maybe I should have steamed it and taken a new picture, but you get the idea.
Now as my friend Sue says I should work in a series, maybe this is it......