...there is a univeral language between women when they craft and come
together in this passion. It unites women in a place that takes them from the
woes of everyday life and provides fortitude and strength to each other through
unspoken word - it is as if each stitch taken together strengthens our bound and
friendship. Please join me on the journey and let us inspire each other........

Friday, September 24, 2010

.....time to quilt?

I love the school holidays for many reasons. It is stress free - no rushing to get up on time in the morning, push to get the kids ready on time for school, and ultimately in time, for me to get to work too. Then when I arrive at work there are the pressures of returning messages, organising for the day and for being prepared for more teens, and working towards motivating others again.
Ah holidays is about me, its about family and its about free time........time to reorganise parts of the house, visit friends, put some stitches in on a quilt or two or three and do some family events. That is what I had planned these September holidays but alas.....life has curve balls! (doesn't it always especially when we have it all neatly planned!?!) Sick, that is the flavour of our holidays so far. It is so disappointing to waste so much time that I could be using to piece, machine quilt, hand stitch, reading another elm creek quilters novel or delve into the dozen of free magazines that I got from my local patchwork shop. Unfortunately your body has a way of shutting down and ensuring that you do rest when you are sick! Bugger!! Double bugger!!
Well the good news is that I am starting to mend and thinking of getting back on track and reviving what I have left of the holidays. I am very grateful to the parcels of love that you find in antibiotics. Thank you to the doctor who invented those! With the grand final around the corner tomorrow, do you think there is any reason my antibiotics were hawthorn colored this time? Perhaps Collingwood or St Kilda would have been more appropriate?
Onto better things - I have been participating in the xmas mystery designer block of the month run by the fat quarter shop in the US. They started in June but were happy to let me join in late and catch up on the couple of blocks I had missed. What surprises me each month when the parcels arrive is the generosity of fabric! There is a lovely big piece of each fabric needed even when only a 3" square needs to be cut from it, leaving plenty left over. So each time I have got a new BOM I go back to the previous blocks and use up fabric from these first before opening the new parcel of fabric. I think I will be able to repeat some of the designs at the end for matching cushions and maybe a table runner too! How exciting?? I so love Christmas and decorating the house with homemade items at this time of the year.
I can't wait to receive the next BOM in this set of patterns each month. It won't be finished for Christmas this year as it doesn't finish til June next year, but hey Christmas 2011, it not only should be on the wall or over one of the couches, but also ready for our quilting group bi-annual exhibition in November 2011! :)
The last block I sewed up on Tuesday when stitching with some of my wonderful friends obviously does not fit in with the Christmas theme. It may be a little too bright. It is a sample block I made up using some of the fabrics from the "Bite Me" fabric range in combination with others to test my drafting skills as I drafted my own pattern for the quilt from 2 different patterns I saw, changing the size of the block to suit the quilt size I wanted. Don't the fabrics just make you feel bright and happy?? They are simply gorgeous and you could just eat those apples!!
It's top secret business as it is for my lovely niece for Christmas (so it does have a Christmas theme after all!) who just keeps hinting at loving my quilts when I put photos up on facebook. So I hope it will be a real surprise for her. I made her a quilt when she was a baby which I can barely remember which is still at her Dad's house apparently so I must have set her up as 'quilt needy' from that moment on. She has just turned 13 and had better not see this blog or I am in trouble!! I hope to sew a few more of these blocks on Sunday. I made the flying geeze units (for the star points) with a method where you make all 4 at once and had to guess at the ratio. They were a little small on this one and I had to tweek the outer border seams to make it finish at 16 1/2" which it did! So this one is in the quilt! Next block I will try a slightly larger flying geese measurement - I should get it right by block 12 huh?
Tomorrow is Grand Final day for AFL footy here in Victoria, Australia. Our team, the Geelong Cats did not make it in so hubby (who is the real footy fan in the house) has decided not to watch it. However I figure why should we miss out on a day of celebration? We have a footy lunch of hot dogs planned and a grand afternoon tea.
Oh there is something I wanted to ask you. You can probably tell that I cropped the block photos above using photoshop but had trouble squaring it up (thus why one looks like I madly cut off the point to the right, which I assure you I did not) since the photos were at an angle to the block. I have asked hubby for a compact camera for Christmas so that I can have it in the bag or in the car for that inspiration when you are on the move. I LOVE my SLR but lets face it, it is just too heavy and bulky to take with you everywhere, so a compact would fill the hole. However I don't want to compromise on photo quality.
I have done some homework and told to come back in October when the new camera releases have been made in the USA and they have hopefully arrived in Australia. Mean time they have showed me a Ricoh camera which has very fancy features and a realistic price - one great feature was to unskew photos like my block ones above - it would straighten it up as if I had taken it straight on and crop it to the image (in this case the image of the block). My dilemma is that the camera is a bit thicker than the others and has absolutely no style or sleekness like its competitors. In fact, I would go as far as to say that it is ugly :(. I just can't get my head around this as I like shiny and cute too! What do you think? What are some of your recent buys girls?

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