Friday 31 July 2015

Scenes from my Week


From the sewing room
  • this log cabin block for my scrappy sampler quilt
From the garden
  • these delicate cyclamen, that luckily haven't been destroyed by frost
From the book pile
  • The Truth According to Us by Annie Barrows.  I think this has been one of my favourite reads of 2015 to date.  Written by the co-author of another of my favourite reads - The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society.
From the mail box
  •  surprise mail from Carla who blogs at The River
Wishing you all a fabulous weekend.

Wednesday 29 July 2015

Wednesday WIP

I have to admit there hasn't been a lot of sewing coming out of my sewing room lately.  However I have had a couple of days where I have not been rostered to work, and because it is wet and windy outside, today seemed like the perfect time to clean up my sewing room and use up a few scraps from my never decreasing scrap baskets. The result - some more blocks for my scrappy sampler quilt, and a sewing room that looks just as messy as when I started. The little triangle sugar loaf blocks are probably my favourite from today's effort. and the pattern is available here.  Now I am wondering just how many blocks I need, how big I want this quilt to end up and whether I start making lots of low volume filler blocks and strips  and start trying to piece it altogether.

Linking up to WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

Sunday 19 July 2015


  • baking and eating - cinnamon and brown sugar brioche for breakfast, and also this chilli for dinner 
  • reading - this book, by the fire 
  • sewing - some secret and these not so secret blocks for my scrappy sampler quilt.  

Friday 17 July 2015

Triceratops Pillow

The triceratops pillow has been finished and is now awaiting packaging ready to be posted off to Australia.

I added a 2" deep denimy blue solid border to take the pillow up to 18" square.  Cross hatch quilting means it should be quite robust for a little boy to use in his adventures  This was the first time I have used masking tape as my guide line - so much easier than measuring and marking all the lines out like I usually do, so I will definitely use this method again.  Bound in sun print chartreuse feathers by Alison Glass, and there is a concealed zipper in the back..

This is also my first finish for my Q3  Finish-along goals.

Tuesday 14 July 2015


Looking towards Waihi Beach township

Sea anemone and limpet found in a rock pool

Waihi Beach on a cold grey Tueday

A slightly belated post I know, because The Scout and I have just arrived back home after a long weekend away without children.  We stayed at Athenree, near Waihi Beach. After the frost had thawed away on Monday we went for a short hike from Waihi Beach to Orokawa Bay.  This would be one of the most beautiful beaches I have seen, I am guessing that it would be a lot busier in the summer months, but there were only a handful of people there that day.  So much lovely driftwood I would love to have brought home to use in my garden too.

A final walk today before we came home shows a much different picture.  Now it's back to reality with work tomorrow for both of us.

Wednesday 8 July 2015

2015 Finish-along - Q3 Goals

Well it's time to list my Finish-along goals for Q3. This year, I have found that listing them publicly is really helping me to get them finished and not stray too far off course with other lovely quilty distractions.  I only have a small list this quarter - so here goes:
  • First up I have the Triceratops pillow to complete for my 4 year old nephew.   His birthday is early August, so it needs to be completed ready to post overseas.  This is top priority,
  • Next up is my birthday club gift for Deb - a mid August finish is required here, in time for our next sewing day - as yet I have no idea what I am making her.
  • Finally the binding needs to be made,  attached and sewn down on my Christmas place mats.
Of course there will no doubt some other little projects started and hopefully finished in this time too.

Linking up with 2015 Finish-along at On the Windy Side.

Tuesday 7 July 2015

Auckland Art Gallery

part of Paradiso by Imants Tiller 1994

Woven date palm feathers - Hou Angiangi by Maureen Lander

The old circular stair case

MMM - My Mu"umu"u Mamas by Ani O'Neill

This Spanish chest and the art  dated from the 15th century

Sea Holly No. 1  c1949 by Eileen Mayo

Tree of Knowledge  1938  by Eileen Agar

Industry 1936 by  John Weeks

MacKelvie Gallery Pilasters - rediscovered during Gallery redevelopment 2008-11, after being enclosed by building additions

Whangai 2  by Arnold Manaaki Wilson 1984
Currently it is the school holidays in New Zealand, I am certainly enjoying not having the morning grumps to get Miss B and Mr J ready in time to catch the bus, and the odd sleep in.

Today we caught the train into the city and visited the Auckland Art Gallery.  I last visited an exhibition here when I was 14, so this was something new for me too.

There were certainly lots of different paintings, photography and sculptures to look at.  Certain types of artwork caused slight differences of opinion  - which made for interesting listening.  I did have to laugh though, as we entered the section with all the 15/16th century paintings complete with ornate frames, Mr J comments. "... some real art now"   Mr J and I really liked the painting 'Industry', you could almost feel the heat coming off the painted molten metal. There was also an interactive section called Wavelength - here you see us striking poses for coloured shadows.

Mr J certainly wasn't as interested as Miss B, so I suspect there may be a mother/daughter excursion in the future for us.

Monday 6 July 2015

Birthday Sewing

My youngest nephew turns 4 in August.  Dinosaurs are his thing, so I decided to make a dinosaur pillow for his gift.  After googling dinosaur patterns, I picked the  paper pieced Triceratops from Tartankiwi.  This pattern has been sitting in my to do pile since February. Now I have a month to make it - the pressure is on.

After work procraftination sewing last week, resulted in this scrappy Wheel of Fortune block, destined for my Scrappy Sampler Quilt.  The pattern is from Jen Kingwell's new book Quilt Lovely.  I am really pleased with how the outer curves went on the scrappy section, those inner ones were hard though, and again I found it easier to hand baste them before sewing.

Anyhoo over the weekend, I knuckled down and started sewing the dinosaur.  I picked a batik from my stash (shock horror I know from all modern quilters), however I thought this fabric would help give the impression of large scaly plated skin.  This block was actually a lot easier to sew than I thought it would be.  It finished at 12' x 16", so I have added a little more of the backgrounds to even it to 16" square.  Now it just needs a border, quilting  and  then it can be turned into a pillow.

Hopefully I can get it done with out any more procraftination projects distracting me.