Wishing everyone a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
However you are celebrating I hope it involves time with family and friends and that you laugh together, play together and cherish those around you.
I need to schedule a day in the week that I post as one week morphs into the next and then it continues with nothing written.
I am not that productive in my sewing room but considering my stash I should be pumping out the projects. Instead I have been working more hours (in my paid job as a midwife), working outside in the garden and painting the fences, and holidaying to Brisbane where I have family.
So what do I have to show-
Here is the finished Scattered Pinwheels quilt that is yet to find a home but will probably be donated to a charity. Don't look too closely as the design is not uniform-made it up as I went along and forgot what I was doing a few times.
Closer look at the quilting.
Then I moved onto a smaller project using a charm pack I had had for a few years and wanted to make a design with HST's.
On the design wall and I was liking how it had turned out.
I decided to quilt it with organic wavy lines and still liked it-until I added the binding.!! I decided to try machine attaching the binding (for the first time) and it seemed to make the quilt no longer sit flat and I didn't like the stitching not being perfect on the back Anyone do machine binding that can give me tips that will help me!!
Last week we had the Festival of Quilts Show in Auckland. This is the big show of the year and this year I met up with a blogging friend who I had never met in person and we had a great day, even though our tastes were different. New Zealand bloggers-maybe we should plan a bloggers get together next year like our Australian friends do at the quilt fairs????
I was pleased to see this year that there were a good showing of modern quilts so here is some eye candy from the show-
Road Block by Annie Whyte
Modern Quilt Display
Pacific Pathway by Donna Ward
Zigs and Zags by Helen Hanford
Apologies to the quilt makers that I have not given credit to but I didn't get a photo of the credits. Congratulations to all the ribbon winners. Lots of inspiration for sure and boy was it crowded. I'm sure everyone had a great time at the show.
My Scattered Pinwheel quilt on the longarm and I am about half way through the quilting.
When I loaded the quilt I didn't really have a plan but I like how it is going. there is a lot of stitch in the ditch and then ruler work which I decided to do using my new Accent on Design ruler-boy I love that ruler. My SID is not perfect but certainly better than it used to be.
I think I will leave the coloured areas unquilted to give it a bit of softness. Any thoughts on that thinking??
Well the anticipation is now over as the postie left a little parcel in my letterbox a short time ago. I tell you there was no gentle opening, but quick ripping of this parcel to reveal my Sister Swap gift. There was no identifying writing on the parcel to say who it was from except it had a UK postage mark on it, and the card inside was signed Penny.
After a lot of detective work I ascertained that the parcel was from Penny who blogs at fabric-scrap-happy.blogspot.com
So in my parcel was-
This little cat that is handstitched and is only about 5 inches tall, and the golf themed fabric covered notebook. I have had to use the photos off Penny's blog as mine kept loading sideways.
Thank you Penny for my gifts.
This has been a fun swap and it has been great to have the linky party so we can see all the wonderful gifts that have been sent and received. All except two were new blogs to me so it has been wonderful visiting everyone. A big thank you to Michelle for 'being the mom' of the swap for all of the sisters.
I going to wait until I received my package before I posted, and just combine what I had sent and what I received in one post but unfortunately I think the postie has decided to keep my package for herself!! I know my package has been sent but it has yet to arrive in the post box.
I got to stalk Pauline over in the UK who blogs at phoenixheirlooms.blogspot.com. It was fun stalking someone I had not visited before, but at the same time a bit daunting that 'I would get it right'. Pauline goes caravanning a lot, and also has a new kitchen in her house so I nearly made her a set of placemats but boy am I glad I changed that idea as she has just made herself some.
Instead I made her a wall hanging for her sewing room. I saw she has a love of Kaffe Fassett fabrics so out my stash of these came and here is the result-it was rather windy when I took the picture but it was the best I could do before it went in the post.
It is the Nested Churn Dash pattern and I did straight line quilting on it.
Pauline does a lot of childrens charity quilts so I included a pattern by a New Zealand designer, along with a little pin cushion and of cause chocolate.
My Patchwork Chevron quilt is now off the machine, has the binding attached and is now waiting to be hand stitched down. I love how it turned out but if I had realised how much it would shrink with the quilting I would have made it longer-lesson for next time.
This photo would not rotate so sorry but you get the idea.
I quilted the coloured area with a flower design that was inspired by watching one of Angela Walters Craftsy classes.
This is the back of the quilt and I have intentionally not taken the photo too close to the quilt as I continue to battle with the tension on my longarm-even though I have tried all the usual attempts to correct it. Still it is finished and it for my own bed so I am happy that it is finished.
This is a quilt made with blocks from members of the Bee Balm online group that I have been a member of for two years now-time to put the first quilt from the group together now!
On the design wall now is this lovely bright pinwheel quilt which is a pattern from the May/June issue of Fons and Porter's Love of Quilting.
Oops, sideways again! Just needs the borders attached then it is onto the longarm.
Then I have been working on a secret project that I will show once it has been received, but this is a sneak peak of the beginning.
I joined the Ít's a Sister Thing Swap organised by Michelle at quiltsfrommycrayonbox.blogspot.com. The concept is to connect with a quilting sister and make her a handmade gift -the sister you make for is not the one who makes for you. The parcels are in the post now so I will be checking the mailbox every day.
I will leave you with a photo of what greeted me when I opened the door one day this week-
one of the neighbours chickens and she just hung around with my two cats for ages. She did make me laugh and has now had her wings clipped so hasn't visited again!!
This is my sisters cat Fergus giving her quilt the seal of approval.
For her 50th birthday (nearly three years ago now!!) she requested two king single size quilts with New Zealand themed fabrics-they have a duvet battle in bed!! What I thought she would like I got totally wrong, so it took along time going backwards and forwards with design and fabric selection to come up with the final plan. They live in Australia but we have holidays together often so a few visits to fabric shops were required.
In the end the request changed from two quilts into one queen/king instead. She selected a pattern called Lantern Lights by Kathy Adams of Koolkat Quilting in Australia, which I modified to get the larger size. The fabrics were both New Zealand themed and had the addition of a fabric featuring bamboo which my brother in law has a love for. I recently holidayed in Australia with them and managed to finish hand sewing the binding down while there.
I was pleased with how it turned out and I quilted it with a pantograph by Lorien called Waitomo, which is a place in New Zealand.
On the machine.
So although it was a rather belated birthday present I am glad it met with the seal of approval. My sisters house has most of the quilts I have made, including the very first one, which she now says needs replacing!!
On the longarm now is the queen size version of the patchwork chevron, with blocks made by my fellow Bee Balmers, that will adorn my bed when finished.
Blogger will not let me load any more photos so I will post this and continue my ravings later.
One of my colleagues recently gave birth to twins so what do you do but make quilts-of course making that decision at the last minute!! They did not know the sex of the babies before they were born but they have been blessed with two gorgeous healthy boys- Jude and Asher, who join their little sister in the family.
I used the pattern off Moda Bakeshop and while I used the same colourway I used different fabrics and different placement of the colours. I backed them with a beautiful soft minkee-one light blue, and one dark blue. I stippled the centre of the quilts (nice and quick) and did a piano key in the border then bound them in different colours.
The background fabric looks very weird here-it is a white with black dot.
The back of the quilts that also shows the quilting-if you wish to see it just click on the photo to enlarge. The weather was not playing well when I took these photos sorry.
I have also been busy making hot water bottle covers.
This is the second year I have participated in a project to make covers for children's hot water bottles that are then donated to the children of Christchurch, a city in the South Island that was devastated with earthquakes two years ago but there are still many in very poor living conditions. A company donates the hot water bottles and many quilters, sewers, knitters and crocheters around the country donate the covers.
Finished sewing the binding on this queen size scrappy disappearing four patch that will be donated to charity-need to use up my larger than necessary stash and it gives me longarm practice.
Now for the non quilting activity-
the beginning of limoncello-vodka and lemon rind to start, then a sugar syrup gets added. I have never made this before, but love drinking it!! I have a lemon tree in the garden for the first time so thought I would put them to good use. Will see how this turns out-it is so easy, just takes a little time to mature.
Hello and welcome to all my past visitors and to anyone new who may come across my blog.
My name is Marlene and I live in the North Island of New Zealand. I learnt to quilt about 15 years ago when a friend, who had just finished a class, suggested I take one and we could quilt together. I continued but she has only dabbled in it since. I have a huge stash of fabric, books and magazines and should stay out of the shops!! I now tend to quilt with brighter colours and am liking the modern look. Of course that stash has to be used up as well so charity quilts will be made.
Blogger will not let me load these photos side by side sorry.
This was a block I had my Bee Balm sisters make for me and before I tackled my Queen size quilt I made this smaller version-now claimed by my sister. My aim for this year is to become friends with my longarm Nolting machine and improve my quilting skills. This is the first quilt I have been really happy with roll on many more.
I have had a long break from blogging. mainly due to backlash from some content I had been associated with online being reported to my previous employer, and the repercussions that followed . Nothing related to blogging but it made me very wary of writing anything online. That is past now and it is time to move ahead. This blog was started as a journal of my quilting and things in life so that is what I need to get back to. I have been quilting and will slowly show them here but please don't feel obliged to view!
I am a midwife by profession and am working in a very busy hospital at present and love it. I have been very fortunate that my job has enabled me to travel the world having worked in Australia, UK and the Middle East.
I live with two very spoilt cats who think all quilts I make are for them, and Maisie, the one in the header photo loves the longarm and appears from anywhere the moment the machine starts. If I'm not at work or quilting I am on the golf course, enjoying the fresh air and exercise.
One more project to show and then I will finish as this is a bit long winded!!
I made this cushion from a Don't Look Now pattern, for my great niece Tilly on her birthday. She pulled it out of the gift bag and said 'Look what Aunty Marney made me Dad' so that was cute.
So that's me back to the world of blogging. Thank you for visiting.