Thursday 31 March 2011

Three New Pages

I have added three new pages to my blog.  The links to them are above on the navigation bar.

My Quilts - is still very much under development.  I want it to be a diary of the quilts that I have made.  Right now it is just a list of the quilt names.  But I plan to add photos if I have them, and details over time.

Customer Quilts - contains links to customer quilts that I have quilted and posted on the blog. 

Quilt Projects - I am hoping the quilt projects page will keep me working on my unfinished quilts and maybe I will get more done.  Right now it is just a list, but I plan to add photos and links as I work on the quilts.

Tuesday 29 March 2011

Feeding Kangaroos

My nephew feeding kangaroos.  I am a very biased and doting Aunty, and I think he is absolutely adorable.  Just too cute!

The Drama

I have showed pictures of my quilt, Cherry Chocolate a couple of weeks ago - what I didn’t mention was the dramas I had with this quilt.

After many long days I had finally finished the quilt, and I was happy with how it looked although it was still covered with blue water erasable pen.  I now needed to wash and block it.  I had pre-washed all the fabrics, so it never crossed my mind there would be a problem. So I happily popped the quilt into the washing machine and went and watched TV.

When I pulled the quilt from the machine, and laid it out on the lounge room floor I was horrified to discover several places on the quilt where one of the red fabrics had run.

Picture the scene - I am sitting on the floor, looking at my stained quilt starting to cry, and my husband (fiancé at the time), like a typical male goes into Mr. Fix-it mode.  What I really needed was a hug, but he said “we have to get the marks out, and we have to do something right now”.  So he jumped on the internet to see what suggestions he could find, and I was still sitting on the floor all alone, feeling totally devastated.

A short while later, Paul came back with some suggestions, but the only thing I remembered him saying was “if the quilt is ruined, then you can’t make it any worse, so you might as well try something to fix it”.  But in my distressed state, I just heard “the quilt is ruined”, and poor Paul got his head bitten off.  (By the way, he read that somewhere on the internet, and it is actually good advice, but just not what I needed to hear at the time).

To cut a long story short, we managed to significantly lighten the stain to the point where it was almost undetectable by repeatedly applying a lipstick removing product which came in a stick application, then gently rubbing the stain with an old toothbrush, and then rinsing. 

Oh, and I really do appreciate the help I got from Paul that night, even if it might not have seemed like it at the time.

Monday 28 March 2011

Cute Heart Quilt

Here is a cute little heart quilt that I delivered back to Patchwork House this morning. Made by Kylie Hawkins at Patchwork House, she is planning to make up kits for this quilt.

The quilting is really light with ditch stitching and ¼ inching, giving a lovely soft finish which is so cuddly.

Sunday 27 March 2011

Ballan Quilt Show

Today Paul and I got up early and headed off to the Ballan Quilt Show.  It took about an hour to drive there, and it was well worth the trip - such beautiful quilts.  

This is a photo of Paul and my nephew Xavier at the quilt show in front of a gorgeous fairy quilt, which unfortunately you can’t see very much of. 

We were in Ballan a couple of months ago to have a delicious lunch at Mill Rose Cottage.  Sue the owner gave us a tour of the former Masonic lodge next door which she and her husband were converting into a patchwork shop.  Yesterday was the grand opening, and I had great pleasure looking at all the yummy fabric (and bringing some of it home with me). 

Xavi enjoyed helping me pick fabric.  (And Paul kindly took him for a walk so I could have some alone time in the shop).

They have done a great job converting the building into a light and spacious shop with a fantastic classroom area.  Don’t you just love the old floorboards, and the ceiling (and all the fabric).

Saturday 26 March 2011


Paul and I went to the Collingwood v Port Adelaide game today at Etihad Stadium. Paul being a Collingwood supporter was happy with their win, and it was an enjoyable game.

Last year Paul and I went to the first grand final which was only two weeks before our wedding.  When it was a draw, Paul was lucky enough to get a ticket to the second grand final the week before our wedding.  Of course he was over the moon about the result – even to the point of mentioning Collingwood in his wedding speech (and publicly thanking my dad for getting him the tickets).

This is a photo of me with the little league games in the background at half time.

Friday 25 March 2011

Bronwyn’s Daughter’s Quilt

I quilted this for Bronwyn in 2006.  She made it for her daughter Helen.  As you can see, I had a lot of fun.

I am really enjoying going through my old quilt photos.  It is interesting to see how I have developed and changed as a quilter.  I would quilt this very differently if it were given to me now.

Thursday 24 March 2011

Kym’s Mariner’s Compass

I am in feather heaven!

Today a customer delivered a beautiful appliqué medallion quilt with lots of plain fabric and she said to do whatever I want on it, so long as there are lots of feathers.

I am currently working on a gorgeous Dresden plate and vine leaf quilt with (you guessed it), lots of feathers.

And here are pictures of Kym’s stunning Mariner’s Compass quilt that I finished on Tuesday.  This quilt was such a pleasure to do.  I love the colours Kym has chosen, and it was beautifully pieced.

Wednesday 23 March 2011

Love Among the Briars

This is one of Bronwyn’s that I quilted for her in 2006. 

Bronwyn and I travelled to the US in April of 2006 to go to MQX and the Paducah show.  It was inspiring to see all the beautiful quilts and we took some great classes. 

When we returned home, Bronwyn asked me to quilt her hand pieced double wedding ring quilt with a view to entering it into Paducah.  We were both thrilled when it was juried into the 2007 Paducah show.

I couldn’t afford to travel to the show, but Bronwyn was able to attend and see her quilt hanging.  

This is Bronwyn in front of her quilt at Paducah.

Tuesday 22 March 2011

China Blue

I have now finished the outer border for this quilt which I have decided to call China Blue. I am very happy with the final result, even though I struggled with it as these shades of blue are really not colours I would normally choose to work in.  (But as I mentioned in a previous post, it is a gift, and I think the person I will be giving it to will like it.)

Now to quilt it – I am hoping to find time to get it on the machine in April in between customer’s quilts.

Saturday 19 March 2011

Elaine’s Butterfly Quilt

I recently quilted this striking quilt for Elaine.  Elaine’s stitching and workmanship is first-rate.  It can’t really be seen in the photos, but her appliqué stitches are incredibly even and the embroidery butterfly detail is beautiful.

I particularly love how the McTavishing on the background looks like the air moving behind the butterflies, and the feathers in the sashing and border look like butterfly wings.

Thursday 17 March 2011

Helen's Quilt

I quilted this recently for Helen.  I really love the design, and I think it is a great way to showcase the fabric. 

Helen has made this for her grandson, so it was quilted with an allover meandering which complements the design and gives it a nice soft finish.

Tuesday 15 March 2011

Embroideries on Black

This is another quilt by Janet Sansom that I quilted late last week.  Janet is my most prolific customer.  Last year I averaged around two quilts a month for her. 

She designs the most exquisite embroideries - every single block in this quilt is different, and so detailed.

As the main embroidery blocks and the sashing square embroideries were divided into quarters coming to the centre, I decided to break the sashing into squares and then quilt feathers that also broke these squares into quarters.

Monday 14 March 2011

Cherry Chocolate

I finished this quilt last year.

I traced the quilting designs, and marked the straight lines onto the top before loading it. I found this rather tedious, but it made the quilting job easier.

It won the Matilda’s Own Excellence in Long Arm Quilting award at the 2010 Vic Quilters Show, which I was over the moon about.   

PS: I had dramas with one of the red fabrics running when I wet it to get rid of the blue water erasable pen.  For the details click here.

Sunday 13 March 2011

A New Project

I made the first block for a new project this weekend. 

I showed it to my husband Paul, and he told me that I needed to mitre the corners of the outer square.  Unfortunately he is right, I was just being lazy.

Paul knew nothing about quilting before I met him four years ago- maybe I have taught him too well. For example, we were having a disagreement once because he didn’t like the way I had my PC set up (he is in IT).  He said that to him it looked unattractive, like McTavishing with Cross Hatching over the top.

I first drafted this block several years back.  It is eight inches, so the pieces are quite small. 

I really liked the original eight inch block, but then I think I added too much that it lost some of it’s impact. So I always planned to make it again.

This was the final quilt.

Saturday 12 March 2011

On The Machine Today

This is Barb's quilt.

Scrappy and reproduction fabrics - yummy!

Friday 11 March 2011

The First Block Swap

The first block swap I was involved in was in 2007. It had ten members and we all made the same block, (although due to fabric placement they all looked very different).  We decided on a very bright multi-coloured fabric for our inspiration.  After the blocks were swapped, how the quilt was put together was up to the individual.

Below are two quilts made from the same blocks, but put together in very different ways.

This one is Bronwyn’s quilt.  I love the way she creatively arranged the blocks.

I quilted it for her, and had a lot of fun doing so.

This one is mine, and I pieced it with alternative blocks and used lots of bright fabrics.

I quilted it with an allover freehand curl pattern as the quilt was so busy it didn’t need anything too fancy.

Wednesday 9 March 2011

Chocolate Overdose

I made this quilt in 2006.  I fell in love with the main fabric in this quilt, and didn’t want to cut it into small pieces.   

Up until this point I usually made quilts with a limited number of carefully co-ordinated fabrics, so this was a challenge for me to incorporate so many fabrics into the four patches.

When it was finished, I felt there was too much of the brown fabric, which is why I called it Chocolate Overdose.

This is the back.

Sunday 6 March 2011

This Weekend

This is what I continued working on over the weekend.   I am making it as a gift, so these are not really the colours that I would normally choose to work with.  Because of this, I am finding it a bit of a challenge, but I am just starting to think it will turn out ok.  I think the person I am making it for will like it, so that is what matters.

I originally had three inch sashing around the centre blocks, so the dark blue was one inch thick.  This overwhelmed the star blocks, so a lot of unpicking later, I trimmed the dark blue on either side of the light blue back to half an inch to make two inch sashing, and it looked a lot more balanced.

It still needs an outer border, and I was thinking of a piano key border in both red and blue. By the way, the quilt was photgraphed on a red patterned rug, and the light blue border is the current edge of the quilt - although the rug doesn't look too bad as a border :)

One of Janet's Quilts

This is one of Janet Sansom’s quilts that I quilted for her in 2009.

Janet designs the most exquisite embroideries.

Friday 4 March 2011

Autumn Flowers

This is a quick quilt top I finished last week.  I made it entirely from my stash, including the back which was very satisfying (although of course the stash doesn’t look any smaller). 

The only thing I bought was the batting.  I use Matilda’s Own wool/poly blend batting for most of my quilts, but thought I would use the Hobbs Polydown in this one for a change.

My new Cross Hatching Rulers from Accents in Design were at the Post Office today – very exciting.  Maybe I will have to have a play with them on this quilt.

I am not sure how I will quilt it, but want to incorporate the flower in the main fabric.  Stay tuned…..but the question is, when will I get the time……