Friday, 31 January 2014

I am the proud...

"If everyone else jumped off a bridge, would you too?"
 Mothers through generations

...owner of a mug rug!

After reading about National Mug Rug Day on Fiona's blog what could I do but make my very own. 

Now I'm finished, I suspect they are as useless as I had previously wondered, but hey, if everyone else is jumping off a bridge...pass me my water wings!

(And it's another January finish!)


Finally in...

"There's a proverb that says 'to err is human', but a human error is nothing to what a computer can do if it tries!"
Agatha Christie (Hallowe'en Party)

Aargh! Enough said on computers!

All is well again, the owls have been handed in, the sun is shining (actually it is cold and blustery) my UFOs are mostly sorted into calico bags with all their bits, I have another finish to add to my sidebar  (brooch cushion for my darling daughter) and I am heading off  later to scour the op shops for treasure!


The only downside for me today is having to go and have my photo taken for my new licence.

Life is good.


Thursday, 23 January 2014

Ta da!

"Never stop just because you feel defeated. 
The journey to the other side is attainable only after great suffering"
 Santosh Kalwar

The owl challenge is done!!!

At least I still have to hem the edge but the interminable machine quilting is finished! Despite it being secret business I am so full of triumph that I am going to share it here... today!

Actually there is very little quilting on it, rather lots of stop/start which destroys any rhythm but gives you a satisfying feeling every time you drop the needle and trap the fabric under the bouncy presser foot, and a thrill if you can land it in the right spot! 

It has been a long journey though, from the first excitement and hundreds of ideas of what a wonderful artistic piece it would be, through the procrastinating to the final (desperate) decision to do what will take least time, see what you can learn, if anything and just get it done in time. Actually I think a lot of my school life ran on this principle.

Things I have learned include to change the needle before starting, some threads work better than others, the quilting table could really use non slip legs, listen more carefully when my friend Fiona Quilting Diva sounds doubtful about lots of quilting stops and starts and that it doesn't matter if you aren't going to shine, as long as you have a go.


The moment is here...

hot from the sewing machine...

exclusively previewing only on this blog...


Cheers, Christine

Sunday, 19 January 2014

The affair I'm not having

"The course of true love never did run smooth"
William Shakespeare 

2014 was the year I was planning a new, deep and profound relationship. One that would change my life. An affair, if you like. It was all planned, we would be soul mates and agree on every stitch...

Of course this affair wasn't to be with a mere man, no! My sewing machine was to be the object of my passion, but like men 
 it   is   so   STUBBORN!  
Why can't it read minds and do what is in my head rather than what my hands guide it to do! And why would it think, no matter how pretty, that a row of loops along the back would enhance the project? Or even that I only want to sew in 6inch runs before rethreading? 

To add to my woes my black cotton has disappeared (using a bobbin of black in the top of the machine may be a hint why the machine is disagreeable). I can't find my quilting gloves, or even the back up gardening gloves - could they have eloped? And the owls in the very important quilt group owl hanger look as if they have had just a touch too much full moon.

Sneaky peek from the back.

There is romance around though. The unpicker and I are spending a lot of time together and really becoming quite intimate... ❤️

Thursday, 16 January 2014

Oh to sew...

"Nothing is really work, unless you would rather be doing something else."
J M Barrie

The MOTH had a sudden inspiration to do that final 10% of the many incomplete projects around the house so I had to step in as offsider/slave which has meant that I haven't had a chance to get any of my own many incomplete sewing projects done. My workman's hands catch on every bit of fabric and thread after a day of digging gardens, laying bricks, concreting, nailing, shovelling pebbles... 
Oh woe is me! (am I getting any sympathy yet?)

It is starting to look as if the end is in sight and I am getting time off today so I can go and have a wisdom tooth extracted. 
The high life I live!

There was a quick chance to play with some machine quilting on a project started ages ago. I had originally quilted along each seam but it was flat and unsatisfactory, so on impulse I decided to do two wavy lines over each straight line which surprisingly, for something requiring so little effort and thought, gave the piece more life.

Now for a lovely hot soak to get rid of the aches which didn't disappear after a night of virtuous sleep, then off for the next ordeal.
Wish me luck!

Christine xx

Saturday, 11 January 2014

The morning after the night before

"Never  put off until tomorrow what you can do the day after tomorrow" 
Mark Twain

Yesterday had a chance to slip some crafting in, ending in my first Friday Night Stitch In.

 The perennial hexagons were revived as a project which requires little stress or set up, I think they will out last me! 

So as required here is a picture: 

I look forward to being inspired by what others have done.

The main other project was a secret quilt challenge from our quilt club. 
This consists of two pieces of fabric which have to be incorporated into two owls on a banner approximately 1 foot wide by 3 feet long. 

A moment of inspiration struck before Christmas and sketches were made. 
Sanity hit yesterday when I realised I had the same (lack of) enthusiasm as Michelangelo painting the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel and had set it up to be as sizable a task. 

Plan B was developed and before I could consider further, the pieces were cut and ironed and it lies waiting for me to do some machine work.
Now in the fresh light of a new day I am wondering 'what was I thinking'!


I would show you for opinions but as said, it is secret business...


Thursday, 9 January 2014

Singing in the shower

"Sing in the shower. Dance in the rain. Laugh as much as you can. Live your life to the fullest..." 

I'll be singing in the shower tonight after finishing my first project for 2014, in fact my first completion for an embarrassing length of time! The purpose of this project, which wasn't on my list, was to quickly and easily learn raw edge appliqué and continue practicing machine quilting.

The inspiration came on one of the hot weekend days we panted through when watching multiple visitors at my bird bath.

And the pattern was adapted from this Art to Heart quilt which I had made quite a few years ago and recently given away.

It was a wonderful chance to use one of these gorgeous variegated threads that my sister and I had bought in a pack at Spotlight over Christmas. 

I just love new coloured threads!

Now my dilemma is; can I add it my list so that I can cross it off as a finish!

Christine xx

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

A day of not much...

"How sweet and sacred idleness is."
Walter Savage Landor

Still persevering with the iPad blogging but not much progress in the finishing project goals - in fact I seem to be further behind than ever! When I am a roll, smoke signals begin to rise and suddenly I am in demand, from husband, children, friends and work.

Unable to sleep today after an unexpected shift last night I knew sewing would only end in disaster so  I answered the call of the op shop and found these lovelies:

Lots of inspiration and the sweetest cherub for my 'secret garden'. The blue and white gingham is an 
apron; I love aprons and noticing recently how well used some of mine have become it was a bonus to find one so new and fresh.

A wander in the garden brought these out of season flowers to my notice. All that heat we have been 
having yet a tiny cyclamen braves the world and pokes it head out in company with another Spring flowerer. My garden is always an absolute delight to me.

You might have to squint a little to see its pink petals.

Following record breaking heat, we had a number of storm warnings so I gathered the few roses from
 bushes in the back garden and a couple of days later they still greet me with the most 
amazing perfume in our small entrance. I wish you could share it!

Finally elusive sleep is calling me (and I hope work isn't similarly inspired)


Christine xx

Saturday, 4 January 2014

The Beginning of Resolutions

“The object of a new year is not that we should have a new year, but rather that we should have a new soul.”
 G K Chesterton

                                Happy New Year to all!

One of my (many) resolutions is to blog on a more regular basis and to make the challenge greater, I am doing it from the iPad! The impetus to blog is to have something to blog about and to do this I am joining Kris at Tag Along Teddies OPAM 2014 challenge which has a caveat that you have an active blog. But with blogging and learning new technology, will I have time to sew!

Edit: not sure the iPad, the Blogger App and I were quite on the same wavelength...

And I'm beginning to wonder if we ever will be... 

Edit again, but more exciting. While updating my UFO list I found I had completed a project!!!!! Some months ago admittedly but a completed project is a completed project!

This patchwork bag from Joy Patch which I take to every social sewing gathering.

Woohoo! One down, a dozen or more to follow!

Christine xx