Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Kate Spain Charm Along - Progress Report!

Wow!  There have been some very busy bees this past week!  Here are some fabulous progress photos from some of the members of the Aussie Charm Swap.......  I'm sure there are some others of you out there who are participating in the Charm-along as well, and I can't wait to see what you're all making with your Kate Spain charms!  There's less than two weeks left until it's time to link up your projects and be in the running for all the AMAZING prizes from the sponsors!  Now - two weeks is a long time in my world - so if you've been under a rock and haven't heard about the Kate Spain Charm-along, then you need to READ THIS and get started STAT!!!!  Make sure you also go and check out all the fab sponsors and see why I chose to work with wonderful Australian peeps!

On to the pretty pictures.......

Clockwise from top left:  Bridie has started with something simple (!?!?!?), little old hexies!  Molli is throwing a plethora of ideas around as he battles it out with his head on which one to go with!  Susanne's crosses mixed with the low vol prints are just divine!  And that other project there - well, that's mine!  I pulled out some templates for half hexies I bought last year and gave them a crack!  I finished a little quilt top today.....

Clockwise from top left:  Jill has been tumbling.  Emma has her quilt top well and truly on its way.  Sandie will now be known as the HST Queen.  And Chrissy is making bags!

Amy has well and truly got her entry sorted, with this gorgeous Honey Honey quilt!  Love!

And Alyce has made this gorgeous table runner from some of her favourite KS prints.  

As of this afternoon, I now have TWO quilt tops made from my Charm Swap package.  TWO!  I am hoping to have them basted and ready to quilt for a sit and sew day on Saturday (my first ever time at a sit and sew day!?!).  Wish me luck! 

If you're participating in the Charm-Along, be sure to let me know, and send me some photos of your progress!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Blue Hues

I love making quilts.  I'm pretty sure I've made that clear?  I love making quilts for customers, especially when said customers leave all the finer details to me.  Last Tuesday, one of the Mums at school asked me if I had time to make a quilt for her by the 27th of July?  "Sure" I said - "Colours?  Style?"  The only specifications I got were "Blue is the recipient's favourite colour and can you please embroider some names on it?"  Ok.

Now because I literally had the s*its with the world over the epic disaster that was my machine's tantrums, I went straight home and pulled out my entire stash of blue fabric, and went to town.  By lunchtime I had all the fabric cut out and placed on my design floor (read: my loungeroom floor).  I stopped for lunch and was then ecstatic to find my machine's tantrum had ceased and she was ready to participate in some sewing.  A couple of hours later, I had a quilt top.  And the following day, a finished quilt.......

Blue Star Lap Quilt 

All the pretty shades of blue come together to make the most amazing sea of yumminess!  I snuck a little grey in and a delightful little white spot, which both blend beautifully with Valori's butterflies, Tula's eye drops and Art Gallery's florals.  There's a little Violet Craft in there too.

Blue Star Lap Quilt 

I grabbed my handy bolt of Ikea backing, which I think worked well.  Bella the cat thinks so anyway!

Blue Star Lap Quilt

The squares are 6.5" in size, which really just makes cutting so quick and easy!  And when it came to featuring the names on the quilt, I went with some little wonky stars, made from 2.5" squares and embroidered the names using Aurifil #2810 Turquoise.  I kept the quilting of the blocks nice and simple - straight lines using Aurifil #2605, my favourite silver/grey thread!

Blue Star Lap Quilt

And the very pretty binding is a great Spotlight print I bought last year and love!

This is a super easy quilt to make, and really effective when the right combination of prints are used!  If you are ever in need of a speedy gift - here's your go-to pattern!  Finished size is perfect for a lap quilt - 48.5" x 66".

I think I managed to both surprise and delight the customer by having her order delivered three days after she placed it?!!?

Saturday, July 19, 2014

Sewvivor - Ms Midge - Melissa G

Family Ever After have launched their third SEWVIVOR series, and this season is the Quilter's Edition.  Ahuh!  

It has taken me a couple of weeks to work up the courage to write this post and throw my hat in the ring, but here I am.....

I LOVE a good challenge!  I love being thrown a curve-ball or a quilt-ball shall we say.....  I have been told I am a "quilt-churner" or prolific quilt maker, and have on many occasions whipped together a quilt in a day.  So, I think if the judges were to throw in a Survivor like challenge of say, eating a kilo of chocolate whilst winding a bobbin and burying threads - I'd say I could manage that!

So, if you will, read this post with the background sound of Destiny's Child and Beyonce, belting out:

"I'm a survivor, I'm not gon give up, I'm not gon stop, I'm gon work harder; I'm a survivor, I'm gonna make it, I will survive, keep on survivin"........

The Quilt I have chosen for this auspicious occasion is my Butterfly Bloom Bloom Quilt.  Some of you who have been around here for a while may very well remember it?  I finished it over a year ago, as a gift for my daughter Chelsea.  When I was debating which quilt to enter, I ummed and ahhed, but then took in to account what the Sewvivor rules tell me:

         "Be sure it is your best representation of you, your sewing skills, and your                                                                                        creativity!"


Although I have "grown" as a quilter in the past twelve months, I feel this quilt represents the beginning of a real LOVE for quilting and the entire quilting process.  This was my first quilt-along (with Lee from Freshly Pieced) and it challenged me in ways I did not even think possible!  It was the first time I'd thought, really thought, about fabric selection and the way it can change the look of a block.  I mean, who knew there were low and high volume fabrics?  And tones???  I almost gave up before I even began!


It was the quilt I really got the hang of free motion quilting on!  


I had a ball adding in words and butterflies.....


I also went to town piecing the back.


It was also the first time I appliqued scraps of fabric to a quilt.


 And lastly - it taught me all about the importance of precise cutting and piecing!

So - there you have it!  Consider my hat thrown!  I'm looking forward to watching Sewvivor unfold - regardless of whether I'm in it or not - I will be sewing along!

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

W.I.P. Wednesday - Warp & Weft Woes

Despite having a tantrum throwing sewing machine this past week and a bit, I have actually managed to get quite a bit done.  I am also happy to say that I think I may have figured out the cause of before mentioned tantrums from said machine - Inferior fabric.  Yes, I did just say that.  I am not a fabric snob - never have been, never will be.  BUT.  The project I was working on when my machine decided to lose its bananas just happens to be my secret squirrel Kate Spain Charm-along project.  In which I am using my good old trusty white Homespun from Spotlight as the mixer.  This did not occur to me to have anything to do with the problem until I got my machine back from Mr Fixit (who I might add said the timing was slightly out, but other than that, just had a regular service), it sewed like a dream.  I put my entire Sea Breeze mini quilt together without missing a beat (and using a grey homespun).  Then when I started back on my KS project - SNAP!!!!  What the???

 I ended up walking away from my machine, feeling dejected and depressed.  I organised to return to Mr Fixit and sit with him whilst he worked out what the problem was.  But then something strange happened.......

I was at school drop off yesterday morning, and one of my friends - a fellow school Mum - sidled up to me and asked if I had much on at present?  I grinned and asked why?  "Well, any chance you can make a quilt for me by the 27th??"  Of course I said SURE!  I figured it would get my mind off my broken machine and I'd use Mum's.

Anyway, I returned home from school and pulled out my blue stash........

Just had a request at school drop off for a quilt. ...in ten days!! So I've just cracked open my stash of blue to get this done!!

Then chose a bunch of yumminess, and started to sew - on my "broken" machine.....

Breaking news. ...... I'm back!  My machine has,  it seems,  ceased its tantrum. #thankyouforthecheering #onfire #quiltinaday

Approximately four hours later, I had a completed quilt top - and NO SNAPPING THREADS!?!!?!?!!  I was excited, relieved and soooo happy!  But wait?  How come no snappity snap??  I pulled out the KS project, and gave it another whirl.  You guessed it - SNAP!

So my friends, this is how I have come to the conclusion I have a dodgy batch of fabric.  To say I am disappointed would be a huge understatement!  I have managed to put together a very small quilt top, but just can't bear the thought of working with that damn white fabric any more......

In other news........

Just pulled these babies out! Going to be one fabulous quilt! #londoncalling @luellabella @mariekabespokebites @wherejanecreates @blossomheartquilts @partyofeightourstory

I pulled out all the London blocks I have received from my fellow Wombat Stew girls!  I have only made the Union Jack, but printed out a few other blocks to put together.  Aren't they fabulous?!?!!?!  From top left, clockwise:  Jane, Kristy, Lara, Marieka, Alyce and Gina.  Such talented girls!  This is going to be one super quilt!

And that pretty tub of blue up above?  Well, that is a result of the following work in progress....

Project #cleanthisshitup has begun! Blue and green in their own tubs.... and who knew I had so many b&w and text prints??? Got their own tub too!

I've started to clean up my stash.  And organise it.  I can tell you now - being able to grab that one tub of blue fabric off the shelf yesterday made life a whole lot easier!  I need to get to the shops to grab some more tubs!

And over here we have precuts and special collections. .... #cleanthisshitup I could be in this room for weeks. ...

And this is getting there.  All my precuts and fabric collections.....Slowly, slowly.

So - what are you working on this week?  I'm linking up with Freshly Pieced and Little White Dove   - You can too!

Little White Dove

Tuesday, July 15, 2014

{Coming Soon} Sea Breeze Mini QAL with Gnome Angel!

My lovely friend Angie over at Gnome Angel is hosting a fabulous Mini QAL, using the Sea Breeze pattern by Canoe Ridge Creations.  I put my hand up to take part weeks ago, and then, you know, time crept up on me and before I knew it - BAM - it was just around the corner!

It all kicks off on the 21st of July, with a great bunch of bloggers to get you through, and show you a variety of finishes.  Let it be known - I have finished my little quilt top, and it is patiently awaiting my quilting attention.  After procrastinating and wondering how I could make the pattern "my own", I must say - I'm incredibly impressed with myself! Hahah!  The big reveal of my mini will be here on the blog Friday 25th of July.  I will also show you a couple of little tips on how to get matching seams.  But for now, here's a little sneak peek.....

I must be excited to have my machine back..... I'm sewing at night!  #seabreezemqal

Sooooo - pop over and grab yourself the PATTERN HERE.  And have a think about how you could make this little mini your own!  There is also a Facebook group HERE.  And the full schedule for the QAL is HERE.

Also, pop over and see Angie's interview with Canoe Ridge's Megan.  I love getting to know quilter's and what makes them tick!

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sunday Stash & Dash - Guilty Pleasures & Other Stuff....

I received a divine parcel of fabric last week, that shall now be known as "the last big parcel of fabric to arrive for quite some time".  You see, I just happened to book myself a ticket to TOKYO a couple of weeks ago!?!?!?!?!  Yes, you read correctly - I'm going to Tokyo!  This time last year I made a deal with my husband - come tax time 2014 he could get a new fancy television and I was going to Tokyo.  He agreed.....

  One of my dearest BFF's has lived over there for around 20 years now, and I've never been to visit her.  Plus, I just happen to have a God-daughter there too now, so it just had to be done.  Partner that with doing my taxes last night - which meant I had to add up all the receipts for the past 12 months, and well, I sort of had a mini heart attack at how much money I had spent on fabric.  Yes, being that I am a small business, I can claim it all as business costs, but who am I kidding?  Lots of that fabric is also a habit.....

Sooooo, in order for me to put in some serious holidaying (BY MY FREAKIN SELF!!!!) and fabric purchasing in Tokyo, I'm going to try incredibly hard not to buy big bundles of fabric for the next few months.  I leave for Japan on the 9th of October......

Anyways, back to the pretty pictures.... The following bundles were from Pink Castle Fabrics.  


Fat 16th Low Volume bundle.


Re-stocking my Word Up bundle....


A gorgeous bundle of colour for a custom quilt order boy's quilt.  Yum.


A little yardage of B & C and a yard of Waterfront Park to bind the quilt I am yet to finish!

Also arriving was this little bundle of love which I bought from Penny Poppleton, who kept them aside for me in her #greataussiedestash on IG.  Thanks Penny!!


Tsuru and Koi.  Now - if anyone else out there has some more Tsuru they would like to re-home, please let me know!  I would like to make a whole quilt from it!

Ok, bed is calling - School's back tomorrow!!!  Yeeeee-hawwwwwwwww!!!!!

I'm linking up - You can too!

Molli Sparkles

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Kate Spain Charm-Along - How U Doin???

It's been a whole week since the Kate Spain Charm-Along was launched!  Can you even believe?  I can.....it's been a week of pain in terms of not being able to get all the sewing I wanted to get done because of Ms Bernina's hissy fit.  I picked her up Thursday afternoon, got a few hours sewing done and then BAMM, she laid down again started snapping threads again!

Moving right along.....

My fellow charm-along'ers are doing a fabulous job with their charm squares!  So I thought I best whet your appetites.....

Riddle and {Whimsy} Spanish Chains top vertical

Jo from Riddle & Whimsy has well and truly put the foot down and FINISHED her quilt!  What???  How divine is it?

Keera from Live Love Sew has also been busy, with her quilt top complete.  I love all the white against the prints!  Keera has a tutorial coming for this very design.  Nice!

Jenny Doyle is one of the Aussie Charm Swappers, and I am loving her use of the Drunkard's Path blocks.

Luisa is another swapper and is doing a superb job with these twister blocks!  Imagine all the cutting!

And Tina - yep, my swappers are on fire - has made a few items, including this beautiful cushion cover.

And last but certainly not least - Quilt Jane has done it again!  I have a serious quilt crush on everything Jane does, and this one is no exception!  Swoon!

I'm so utterly impressed with everyone's enthusiasm!  If this is the first you've heard of the Charm-along, then you best go READ THIS POST for full details!  There are SEVEN amazing prizes up for grabs from wonderful Australian sponsors AND Kate herself!  Go!

Ms Midge

So - are your charming along with us?  How are you going?  Tell me!
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