...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........

Saturday, April 30, 2011

YAAH, Yaaah, YAAAH!!

I am very proud of my achievements today. This one is ahead of schedule (if that is possible)! I intended to finish this at my quilting groups retreat towards the end of May but picked it up during the holidays and finished the star blocks and sashing strips. I had previoulsy completed the BOM stitchery blocks.

Today I had the pleasure of stitching with a new christian craft group called "Gifted Hands". It was their first meeting today and they invited me along. My intentions were to finish my cushion cover and another xmas BOM, but could not lay my hands on the BOM I had carefully cut out this morning, so plan B (in the last hour) was to get the 'just in case' project out of the car - this quilt top - but not a top at that stage.

I did not get it together whilst I was there, obviously in the hour remaining, but I did gain some motivation and continued to sew tonight and have just finished. It is now a top and ready to quilt next!! I am very happy with it. Here it is.......

This brings my April finishing total to 25 blocks and 4 finished projects!! Yaah, Yaah. I had a couple of other things almost finished today but that will just have to count towards May now - more tomorrow :)

Love Bonnie xxx

Monday, April 25, 2011

The last of my achievements these holidays

I think this will be the last of my achievements these holidays. I had plans for sewing tomorrow but the kids want to go motorbike riding and I need to do things with them as well. So I will have to delay my well laid plans. So today I zoomed away and finished a few blocks.

First there was one.....

Then there was more......

And finally there was even more!!

Yaah another 16 blocks to add to my total! These stars are part of a bom called 'Twas the nite before xmas'. I had hoped to get the quilt top together but now it will have to wait to my quilting retreat in May.

Luv Bonnie xxx

The generousity of fellow crafters!

I am always blown away by the generousity of others who also share the love of craft, despite any religious backgrounds, cultures or other differences. Craft seems to bring people together regardless of anything else. When you stitch together, how many times have you seen or even experienced the generousity of another crafter when something has been left behind, or you don't quite have the right color of cardstock or fabric, or you have forgotten a technique, or can't work our a pattern. I have to say that in general, 'crafters' are self-less.

During the last 12 months I have joined the cyber world, particularly by observing people's talents on their blogs, gaining inspiration and started to share my own accomplishments on my own blog in the hope that others will be inspired. Again, I have been conscious of how generous 'crafters' have been with a lot of give aways and incentive prizes to motivate our level of achievements.

Today I find I am the recipient of one of these generous giveaways. Cheryl from Willowberry blog contacted me this morning to ask me for my mailing address so that she could send me this wonderful pattern. It is so sweet and when I saw it a little while ago, decided it definitely had to be on my to-do list.

Baby tweet17

and there is more.....

Baby tweet04

Check out Cheryl's blog here - http://willowberrydesigns.typepad.com/willowberry_designs/2011/04/baby-tweet.html. She does some beautiful work :)

I am off, beaming of course, to chose the range of fabric I will be making this sweet set from :)

Bye all and happy crafting! Remember to add something to someone else's life today! :)


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Holidays are coming to a close :(

Yes it is sadly true. My school holidays with the children are coming to a close. The good news this time is that our holidays were a little longer than usual with the inclusion of easter and anzac day at the end of the hols making them 2 1/2 weeks long instead of the usual 2 weeks. I still have another 2 days and I am planning a fair bit of sewing in that time still! After all, why not take advantage?

Last post I promised to come back soon with more accomplishments - in fact I think I promised the next day! Well that obviously didn't happen and I can tell and show you why!

I decided it would be a good idea to do some 'minor' rearranging to my craft area to both tidy up and find some space for the extra projects I have recently acquired (somehow! Maybe the easter bunny?). I forgot to take a photo when I started, but of course in order to make it better, you have to make it worse first! So part way through the rearranging this is what things looked like!

A fair amount had to be loaded into YES - that's right - the bathroom! My craft area is a longways passage area that leads to our toilet/bathroom. It is what is left over of what used to be a sunroom until we relocated the bathroom to the end of this area rather than the middle of our house. I say 'used' to a sunroom as it sees little sun these days, in fact none if I can help it. I had a sunblock blind made for the window that is behind my racks to stop fabric and card stock fading.

I guess by now you have figured out that it took me a little longer than a couple of hours!! In fact a lot longer!! Try 2 and a bit days! But I am happy with the result even if a little crowded. Do you love the wall of containers? Each contains either a quilt project or two, stamps or scrapbooking accessories. I added the sea grass baskets - I didn't have these before but it was a concept I have wanted for a while. Each one is dedicated to a different use - one for batting (the biggest!), one for stuffing and left over small bits of batting that I use as batting, and the third for scrap fabrics. Well I can't thrown them out can I? They could make another quilt or so!?!

The other side of the room....

Here are some of the feature "gloating" areas!! .....my collection of quick kutz die cuts...........

......and my collection (so far, he he) or go-cutter dies!!

So not a lot else has been able to happen. I have been working on these lately and after my 3 day break from it, work resumed on these tonight for a while. I am a little over it now. Check out how small the pieces are! Using paper piecing I have made 28 of these so far and need to make another 24.......a job for tomorrow and hopefully to show you what they are for, and hopefully, more.

So for tonight, I am going to continue on this stitchery and I think I might be able to finish this block so that I can stitch it into a...........oops.....nearly told you......a...ah.a..project tomorrow or Tuesday. I will show you when I am done! :)

For now, it is goodbye. Hope everyone is enjoying a lovely break over Easter :)

Love Bonniexxx

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Steaming along :)

There have been so many times, particularly this year as my work load has increased that I have had to bring work home. So many times I have had to ask the kids to be quiet, to let mummy work, and expect them to be independent. There have been so many times when I have sat in the car or on the sidelines whilst the kids have been at sport, getting the work done for teaching. Countless!

Don't get me wrong - I LOVE to teach and there are moments that make it all worthwhile, but holidays is the time I get to prioritise my kids! I get to have patience for them, as all too often I have run out of patience by the end of the working day - its like I have spent my portion of patience before I get home. Holidays is time to spend time with them, just sit in the couch together and watch a old movie or put on a DVD or take a weekend out together down the beach. We just love to caravan together - it gives us time with just us and far less distractions. This time we made it internet free as well so this was one huge big distraction less!!

We enjoyed our time at indented heads for an extended weekend these holidays. It was a lovely quiet park with a real community atmosphere. Everyone seems to know everyone and they were very welcoming. We were 5m off the beach! Wow. Spectacular.

Can you see the small body on the body board in the shot above? That is Caitlin being towed along by her Dad who is scuba diving below her (see his flipper). Kahle is also scuba diving below but can't be seen. This was Kev's compromise for Cate so she could be included as they went to check out the sucken paddle steamer. So sweet. By the end of this trip she had a go on the regulator with Kev and Kahle also helped her. The first time she was a bit freaked, but the next time she was so wowed by the schools of fish she saw that she is a definite convert to the sport of scuba diving. Man we are going to be broke. I told Kev we couldn't afford for me to stitch and scuba dive so I would have to stick to stitching (I am becoming out numbered :) ).

Ok, so even though holidays is about spending time with family, it is also a balance with 'me' time. It is important for mummy to have 'me-sanity' time, cos this makes me a better and saner mummy. The kids have grown up with me stitching since they were babies. I was always determined to find a way - determined that children enhanced life rather than inhibited life.

So today as Caitlin quietly played her Wii and Kahle had chosen to have some alone time in his room watching a DVD I got some, or rather a lot of crafting done. Here is what I have to show......

Today I have been playing with these, the fruits of my labour over 7-8 months last year. Red work backstitched. It was a block of the month called Twas the night before Christmas. I didn't get to finish though so now I am determined to make the supporting blocks and put the top together. I started with trimming these to the correct size - they look so impressive when you do this!

Then I started to play with these accompanying fabrics.

And made these......

Tomorrow I will work with this some more. But back to today! I worked with these that I stitched over the weekend and turned them from this.......

.....to this......yaaah, these are going to adorn my desk at work. Inspired by a fellow colleague, I thought it was about time that some of my character hit my desk at work and it became 'my' space instead of a sterile space :).

I was incredibly talented at creating this! Not today but I found it in my pin cushion as a reminder of what I had previously accomplished. I am not sure why I kept it other than it was so unusual. Sewing over this pin (as I usually do) created this and fortunately my machine kept going with no ill effect.

I forgot to show you these accomplishments from last week. For over 12 months I have wanted to start the farmers wife sampler quilt, after purchasing the book just before Christmas at my local. I just loved the civil war colors. So for my birthday my quilt group gave me a fat quarter each as it was my 'O' birthday last year. I was able to specify what colors I would like so I asked for civil war. I received over 7 metres of fabric! Such a delight. I just had to buy a few more (you know) to even out the colors and I was ready to start! Or was I? Just too many other things to do. So it sat there until this year when our quilting group decided to have a monthly challenge/focus groups and one of those is the farmers wife quilt - guess what I joined and finally started. We need to complete 4 blocks each month, supposedly the ones they tell us, but this naughty girl just wants to pick the ones that inspire her! I am using paper piecing method with it for accuracy and found this a bit of a learning curve to remember just how to paper piece as it had been a while. Well the first months is done! :) Always a good start.

Oh did I mention there are 111 to complete the queen size quilt and of course I want to do them all! I will attempt to keep you posted on my progress!

Here is a sneak at another little piece that I have been working on.......more as I progress on that too.

I hope life is working out for you at the moment. Enjoy the moments, even the small ones. I am off to sew with a friend tomorrow - this is our first time crafting together. I am so looking forward to it and will surely have more to show you after.

Love Bonnie xxx

Monday, April 18, 2011

More Catching up :)

I just love holidays! Teachers are often criticised, ironically particularly by parents who readily comment that they couldn't cope with 26 teenagers at once. They criticise that teachers get SOOOO many holidays - a perk of the job! Well first of all I welcome them to join the profession if they wish to have holidays like us, but it means coping with all those teenagers they refer to! Second, I refer to my holidays as stress relief! I don't think, as much as I enjoy it, that I could teach 52 weeks of the year. It is totally exhausting to give so much of yourself. So when holidays come around, I take the opportunity to do just what gives me the most stress relief and that is quilting and other crafts. Most of this has been on hold during the term as I give up evening to correct work, plan lessons, participate in parent evenings and conduct parent-teacher interviews so that parents are connected into how their child is going. Teaching is definitely not a 9-5 job and so holidays is a MUST to finally clock off for a short while, and clock on the craft for me. I have been catching up on a few things I have had going and I would like to share these with you.....

I have finished blocks 9 and 10 of the mystery christmas block of the month. Hopefully block 11 will arrive this week so I can get that one done too :) I can't wait to be able to put it together - only one more month to go after this months arrive.

I also FINALLY managed to finish block 5 of "down in the garden". It seems that I have been working on this one for many months. This is for three reasons, too much work to do to continue much craft, too tired when I don't, and a lot of work in this block. But the end result is great. Take a look....

I back tracked after this to block 4, which believe it or not, only needed the butterflies appliqued but I managed to put it off for quite a while - another finish!

Last post I promised to show you what I had made to go with my sewing mat, catcher and pin cushion set that I made during the summer holidays. Well here it is......

I am very proud to have been contacted by an editor at the HOMESPUN magazine (of which I am an avid subscriber and got the patterns) with a request for some high resolution photos of the sets. I am off to send them those next! :)

Tomorrow there may be more to show you........thanks for visiting.

Bonnie  xxx

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Catching up.....

Firstly I must apologise for being absent for so long and not posting sooner. Now it is really hard to remember what I haven't shown or told you about! I'll give it my best.

With new demands at work this year I am finding a lot less time to 1) craft and 2) blog about what I have crafted! We are going on a well deserved small break away tomorrow and some photos I have taken recently to help me update you all are still on the camera which is safely packed in the caravan ready for an early pull out. So I will have to blog again early next week!!

Just in time for Christmas I finished this toy box for my great nephew. I am rather pleased with how it has come up. Perhaps there will be more matching ones to come......

I hope he has some toys stored in it! Riley is 5 months old now.

I think this is my year of 'gift' quilts and this was the first for a niece on my husband's side who lives in Bendigo and had her first child, a gorgeous boy we are yet to meet. It seems he loves his quilt wherever he goes.

Do you remember this set that I made last holidays using the January homespun? I was contacted by the assistant editor and encouraged to add more to my set and asked to send them a photo when I did.........so next time I will show you more! That is all I am saying for now. :)

Ok well that's it for now. More soon....I promise. If you are having a break, I hope it is a good one. :)

Bonnie xxx