Wednesday, 11 July 2018

It's a finish!

I have repaired the quilt I gifted to Catherine 17 years ago. Never done a repair to a quilt before so this was a steep learning curve.. ..... I started with replacing the worse block, a log cabin which had two badly sun-rotted logs and replaced it, sewing one seam on the machine, the other threes sides I hemmed into place.  I was lucky to find little strips of the original fabrics in my strip stash.

Two more repaired blocks. Fabric strips under the ricrac darned and hidden by pink ricrac. Herring bone stitch around the centre of the Star square hopefully supporting thinning fabrics and a flower to cover the worst bit.
I gave the quilt a good wash on a gentle machine wash and dried on the line overnight when it was cooler. I didn't want it in the direct sun!

So, fingers crossed it works. And fingers crossed England wins their World Cup match tonight!!!

Wednesday, 4 July 2018

17 years old Quilt back for repair

One of the first large quilts I made back in 2001 was this single bed sized quilt called "In the Pink" for my cousin's daughter's 30th birthday.
I was so pleased to learn recently that the quilt is still on Catherine's bed at her parents' house  and she still enjoys it.
Unfortunately her room gets a lot of strong sunlight so the colours have faded badly, especially in the bottom half of the quilt. The hot sun has actually rotted two of the fabric strips in the log cabin blocks as you can see in the second photo. One of the appliqued elephants is coming adrift and the black stitches which represent his ear have disappeared!
So it's back with me  for repair - something I haven't done before so tomorrow I'm taking it to my Patchwork Group meeting to ask for advice.
Interestingly, 17 years later I still enjoy making Sunbonnet Sue and Overall Bill blocks ( I have some on the go as handwork at present) and I also applique names on the front of quilts, Baby quilts these days.
Happy memories.

Sunday, 1 July 2018

Traditional block but new to me

Here are my Sunshine Lotto blocks for July, the theme was Pink and Green.
I took the opportunity to try a new - to me - block, the Shoo fly. Middle two blocks in this photo.
 I thought the pink rabbit fabric would make a fun centre to the block and I'm happy with them.
These will be added to the 4 June blocks.
Off to the Post Office tomorrow.

Sunshine June blocks

I only managed to make 4 blocks in June as we were away half of the month.
The theme was Novelties. Im happy with the way the turquoise with white spots Wonky star shows up and emphasises the Woodland animals fabric.
I've had the teddy bear fabric in my stash for several years and never found the right place to use it. So much character in each teddy bear it has always seemed a shame to cut it up - so I cut large centres for the blocks.

Sunday, 24 June 2018

Woodland World baby quilt

I have finished the baby quilt I am gifting to my daughter's friend Aimie for her baby boy Tristan who was born on 5th June. We have known Aimie since she was 13 so we are all excited about this new baby. Aimie has chosen a Woodland theme for baby's nursery and fortunately I had several fabrics in my stash that fitted perfectly: featuring little owls, rabbits, foxes.

I hand quilted with my favourite Perle cottons and hand blanket stitched round the letters of Tristan's name and the little hearts at the top of the quilt.

The quilt measures 36" x 48" which I think is a useful size.
Our daughter is visiting Mum and baby on Tuesday afternoon so I will have a parcel ready for her to take - this quilt, the crocheted blanket and a little cardigan.
Can't wait to meet Tristan but unfortunately I have a prior engagement on Tuesday so I can't deliver the gift in person.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Ready for my Patchwork Group

The Patchwork Group was meeting at my house this morning so here's the goodies ready for our Coffee time ( or Morning Tea as it's called in New Zealand).
I tried a new recipe for the cake: Mary Berry's Orange cake with chocolate. A great recipe, all-in-one method so pretty quick to make. I have to say it was delicious! Moist and tasty, not much left!  But I think this is going to be a favourite recipe so more of these cakes in the future I think.
A plate of rock buns - a recipe from my NZ  Edmond's cookery book. Well tried and tested recipe but still tasty.

We had a lovely morning together, lots of conversation between nine of us. Friend Ruth brought her cousin along - Mary lives in Canada but it's the second time she has joined us.
Aren't Patchwork friends the best?

Monday, 18 June 2018

9 Patch Lotto Blocks winnings

Collected today from the Post Office ( parcel arrived a few days ago whilst we were away). 
My Sunshine Guild Lotto Blocks winnings: the theme was 9 Patch blocks. The 18 blocks include one of my own blocks.

Now I have 2 sets of Lotto winnings so I think I need to get busy putting them together. Just got to finish a baby quilt first. And I also need to make my June blocks and send them off to the USA.

Tuesday, 5 June 2018

2 Pink + 1 blue/green for RSC18

Linking with Angela's So Scrappy blog for RSC2018. I finished 2 Pink Twinkler blocks and made 
one not quite blue/ not quite green Twinkler making them Leader/Ender style as I finished sewing my baby quilt top together. I love theses blocks, always pleased I spotted them on Cathy's Sane, Crazy, Crumby blog.

Sunday, 3 June 2018

Crochet blanket finish

I finished a striped baby blanket yesterday. It's for one of my daughter's friends whose baby is due in a couple of weeks. The baby's nursery has a Woodland theme so I chose two shades of green and a soft grey for the yarn. I found an excellent tutorial on YouTube by Bella Coco for a pretty shell edging and I am very pleased with the result. I shall use this pattern again for edging blankets.

I am also making a quilt for the baby - it's a boy apparently - which is now sandwiched ready for hand quilting. Again, in keeping with the Woodland theme.

The bay window you see in the background of my photo is full of cards and flowers for my recent birthday. I am very lucky to have such thoughtful friends and family. 😊

Sunday, 20 May 2018

RSC A little more pink

I made 3 more 9 Patch blocks for the Sunshine Guild's May Lotto Blocks. featuring pink fabrics so I could link them with Angela's So Scrappy RSC blog post.
I also managed to make another 49 Patch pink block using 1.5" squares and another Roman Stripe block, again using 1.5" pink squares.


Here are the 8 blocks I hope to send to Tammy for my May Lotto blocks. I need to weigh them as I now have the necessary information about postage charges from my local Post Office.

Monday, 14 May 2018

RSC Hints of pink

The colour for this month's RSC is Pink, a colour I love and use a lot as I make lots of baby quilts.
The request for this month's Sunshine Guild Lotto blocks is Nine Patches - of any type: Stars, Churn Dash etc.
I had a few tiny pink scraps so made a few Crumb blocks which I paired with blue homespun to make a regular Nine Patch. I found an already-made Crumb block which had a lot of pink in it so used that for the centre of another regular Nine Patch adding to some purple Crumb blocks.
A charm square of a strawberry fabric made the centre of a Churn Dash block.

The Guild member who collects our Lotto blocks is called Tammy and she frequently puts photos on her Flickr page of both the Lotto blocks she has received and also Sunshine Quilts she has made from gifted blocks. I recently noticed a block design that was new to me (I have no idea what it is called) and as it met the Nine Patch criteria I decided to try it out in the blocks you see on the bottom left and right of the photo. It reminds me of a nut - as in "nut and bolt" and I like it. If you know the proper name for the block please let me know!

I will probably make a few more blocks for this month's Lotto blocks but I'm going to see how many I can post to maximize the postage rates to the USA. Our local Post Office lady is very helpful that way. Postage now is so expensive I would rather make the most of the weight I can use.

Thursday, 3 May 2018

Lotto Blocks from USA


We arrived home from our long trip on Monday evening. A huge pile of mail was waiting for us, including a parcel of 20 Sunshine Guild Lotto blocks. Tammy, the Guild's  organiser had emailed me to expect them. I shall have fun sewing these up, I think they will make two quilts.

Tuesday, 10 April 2018

Teddy Bear quilt

I have had this Teddy Bear panel in my stash for years - can't even remember where it came from. 
So, it was time to make it into a Premature baby quilt.

Measures 17" x 23", just the size the local Maternity Hospital requests.

Monday, 9 April 2018

Sunshine Guild April blocks

I have made 4 blocks for the Sunshine Guild's April Lotto draw. The theme was "Boyish".

Hence  the dinosaurs, sheep and little elephants.
I really enjoy making these sets of blocks, nice to have a theme or colour requirement.

                               They will be posted to Tammy the next time I'm in town.

The Magic of Scraps

My lovely blog friend, Jo Butterfield sent me some scraps , some were already sewn into HSTs, all different. I trimmed them all and then cut them across diagonally. I paired them again to make Hourglass units. I worked out I needed 35 of these units so I could make a quilt top, setting them
5 x 7.

I picked  35 units I thought would suit a girl's Premature baby quilt. Then I sewed them up and added a pink spotted fabric border. At that point I ran out of suitable scraps in my stash so had to go shopping for backing and border fabric. I found a lovely pink fabric with a small white spot which nicely complemented the border fabric.


Then I chose Hourglass units that I thought would be more suitable for a boy's quilt and put a border around them using a new blue (with small white and navy spots)fabric I bought especially on the same shopping expedition and used that for the backing and binding.


Here they are, side by side. Both measure 23" x 19", just under the maximum size preferred by the hospital.

Sunday, 8 April 2018

Strings and Squares

I am finishing off sewing, ready to pack up here in NZ before we fly off on the next part of our trip. 
I managed to make 8 x 10.5" QAYG String blocks for Jan: the ones on the left in more feminine colours, the ones on the right more masculine.

Here are the last 8 crochet Granny squares. I have literally used up every bit of yarn I have here.
I did enjoy popping into the three Charity shops we have in town looking for odds and ends of yarn.
Using all the lovely bright colours, set off against some duller navy, brown and gold colours has been great. Rather like playing with a paint box when I was a little girl. Such fun!

We are shortly going into town so I can mail these to Australia.
Happy sewing and crocheting everyone!,

Saturday, 7 April 2018

Gift for my Best Friend

In a few days it will be my Best Friend's birthday - one of those significant ones, ending with a zero.

We have known each other for 45 years, so we have lots to celebrate. I am on holiday at present so I've made her a little gift to pop in the post with her birthday card. The other gift I hope to hand over in person the next time we meet.

I used the pattern gifted by my 103 years old Patchworth friend, Win. The yarn is extremely soft and warm: King Cole Sprite, 100% Acrylic, Shade is Sardinia

Sunday, 25 March 2018

For Jan Mac

These are the QAYG  blocks and the first set of Granny Squares I sent to Jan a couple of weeks ago.
My other blog friend Jo has sent me a link to help me upload photos from my iPad.
It worked, I think!

Saturday, 24 March 2018

46 and counting

Two more sets of Granny Squares I sent to Jan Mac in Australia  on Friday. I have been absolutely addicted to  making these squares, haunting the three  Charity Shops in my local town here in New Zealand for odds and ends of yarn. Great fun mixing and matching and doing all 10 rounds in a different  colour to make each square.
I've now sent 46 squares but I am finishing off a few extras at the moment. I have now run out of yarn so then I will start knitting a scarf as a gift for my friend.

March Green Sunshine Lotto blocks

4 Maverick blocks (using Bonnie Hunter's pattern from her  Free Patterns tab at the top of her blog) 4 of my own design "Bar blocks "

On Thursday and Friday we had very heavy rain so I took the opportunity to sew 8 green blocks for this month's Sunshine Lotto blocks.

I posted th m to Tammy on Friday afternoon so they are now on their way to the USA.
Happy landings, little parcel!

Monday, 5 March 2018

Parcel sent to Australia

A few days ago I sent  a parcel to Jan Mac in Australia. She is making beanies, Quilts and blankets made from crochet squares to send to New Guinea. Have a look at her blog to see what she's doing (sew many quilts  too little time blog) . I was pleased to read her post today to see that my parcel arrived safely. Take a look to see what I sent, I'm away from home at present and don't know how to add a photo to this post. I am not a techie!

Busy crocheting more squares, until my bits of wool run out. Or I go back to the charity shops to look for extra oddments of wool.

Happy sewing.

Thursday, 8 February 2018

Hooked on crochet

I haven't done any crocheting for a long while but when I read Jan's post about making Granny Squares to sew into blankets for Papua New Guinea I decided to make some.  I have so enjoyed myself, I have literally been crocheting every minute I can. My daughter says I reminded her of Madame Defarge knitting at the foot of the guillotine.  Lovely!

No ends sewn in yet, I'll leave that until I either run out of yarn or energy and enthusiasm!

Tuesday, 30 January 2018

Challenge set by Win, almost 103 years old!

Towards the middle of last year my dear Patchwork friend Win (103 years old in a month's time) set our Group a Challenge.  She had found a scarf pattern which used a 100gm ball of DK yarn.  She asked a friend to buy a ball of yarn for each of us in the Group and photocopy the simple pattern.

I was so busy sewing and lots of involvement with the family and knitting for a friend's baby that I'm afraid the Challenge was put to one side. However I recently started to knit the scarf and it is now completed.  It's really nice, one of those scarves that wrap around your neck and fill the gap between sweater and coat collar.  I've decided to gift it to Liz in NZ to use during the winter.
It was so interesting to see the pattern evolve as I knitted my way through the ball of variegated yarn.

I'll definitely make more of them, perhaps for gifts for friends.

Yesterday I made 4 more QAYG String blocks for Jan in Australia.  Now have 6 to send her soon.
I have chosen darker/stronger colours for these 6 blocks as I know Jan always needs blocks for men and boy's quilts. They measure 10.5" square.

Monday, 29 January 2018

Getting ahead - February's Lotto blocks

I so enjoyed making blue and yellow Lotto blocks for the Sunshine Guild that I decided I would make some blocks using the February colour, Red.  This is a colour I rarely use (not sure why) so as a result I have almost no scraps.  I rooted through my fabrics: found two new FQs, a few assorted strips and a few 2.5" squares.  I also found a larger piece of striped fabric, the main colour being yellow with various coloured stripes.  As a few were red stripes I thought I could include that fabric.

I love making Star blocks so this time I used Bonnie Hunter's Maverick Stars free pattern and made 3 pairs of matching stars.


By then I only had scraps left (apart from some of the yellow striped fabric).
I made this block using strips framing a scrap square of fabric which I think I was sent in a swap years ago.

Then I used another of the black and red strips to make this one:
Combined the red 2.5" 4 patches with 4.5" squares.  In order to make these I had to cut into yardage, the only fabric I have in my stash that contains red - a piece depicting little red elephants which I intend to keep for backing a baby quilt - one day!

The red elephants feature again in this second block.
The only red scraps I have left are a few strings and a few 2" x 3" rectangles left over from making the blocks with the Chinese writing strips.
So, 10 Lotto blocks ready to mail to Tammy in Texas tomorrow. Knowing how few bits of red fabrics I owned I am amazed that I managed to eke them out to make so many blocks.
Just proving the old adage: "Necessity is the Mother of Invention" is alive and well.

Tuesday, 23 January 2018

Another baby born - another quilt gifted

My best friend's new grandson was born last week. I recently found out that the expected baby was going to be a boy and I already had two boy quilts in my stash. I decided which one to gift to little Albie , made the label and sewed it on. Now it's ready to wrap up and put in the post tomorrow.

I made the quilt back in October 2014 and it finally has a new baby to enjoy it.
The original quilt was called "Fairy Lights" from a pattern by Ruth Buchanan. But I have renamed it (at my husband's suggestion) "Magic".  Little Albie made a very protracted entrance to the world and his Mummy must have felt it was "Magic" when he finally chose to be born!


The quilt measures 42" square, a perfect size for a Playmat or snuggling quilt.
Proof  I have been steadily working through my scraps is that I only have scraps from the border fabrics in my stash.

Sunday, 21 January 2018

Little gifts

My New Zealand friend asked if I could make her a new bag for her to house plastic carrier bags.
Made it this afternoon using some Amy Butler fabric.  It's fully lined with a proper casing so it should be sturdy.  Based it on the Pink Penguin Drawstring bag tutorial.

Yesterday I made 2 x 10.5" square QAYG string blocks for Jan in Australia.
See her blog Sew Many quilts too little time
to find out what marvellous work she does making countless charity quilts, many of them from donated QAYG blocks.  She uses 2 sizes of blocks: 10.5" and 12.5".  I hope to make a few more in the next couple of weeks. Trying to use "man coloured strings" as I know she is always looking for blocks suitable for men's quilts.

Off to cut some small scraps up into 2.5" and 1.5" squares for my stash.

Saturday, 20 January 2018

First quilt finish of 2018

I had been asked to make a commission quilt back in August last year for a baby due in January.
I had made the top but was waiting for baby to be born and named so I could applique her name on the front and quilt it. Baby Ebony was born on 5th January and I worked hard on the quilt, finishing it on Thursday evening ready to hand over to Ebony's Aunty Jo who had asked me to make it. I did that yesterday and was thrilled at Jo's utter delight when she unfolded the quilt.  It's odd how nervous I am when I make a quilt to order - I'm always unsure of my colour and fabric choices when I am trying to follow the customer's requirements. Jo had asked for grey to be included and for it not to be "too pink and girly". I was pleased with the finished quilt and just hoped Jo would be too. Icing on the cake for me when I saw her obvious delight.  Phew!!

Here it is:

Ebony's Quilt entitled ( at Jo's request) "Miracle".

And close ups of the appliqued name panel:

I used the grey border fabric for the backing and binding too.
I hadn't made Tumblers before and really loved them and will make baby quilts with them again.  I liked hand quilting with Perle around the inside of each Tumbler.
The quilt finished at 38" x32".