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February 2019

January 2019

The book of the moment

I am just loving reading this book.  I bought it for my husband last year and I finally got the "do you want to read it?" message.  Silly question.  It is another book to be savoured, like a well prepared meal, and some of those feature in the book.

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The things that worries me is that being a Russian novel it will end with many "clouds of gray" as it says in the song.  Until then I will just love every minute of it.

The wish list

I have thought all January about my new year resolutions and decided that I will have a wish list.  I never know from one day to the next just how I am going to feel and if I will need to take to my bed.  I would feel a lot more comfortable knowing that these were wishes and I could just let them go if I have to.

No 1 on the list is to go to India with Pammie at the end of the year.  I will not commit till a lot closer to the date.

The trip is mainly to textile centres that I missed on my trips to India.  She has a great article on her blog about quilting in India and Africa and the links between the two countries.

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No 2 is to make 50 place-mats for charity,  so far I have finished four.

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No 3 it to complete the remainder of the children's classes for the year.

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No 4 A couple of bunnies for my grand daughters for Easter.

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This is a very short list.  I may have to add more to it later.


A day in the country

I haven't been up to Toowoomba for over 6 months, so, a visit was over due.   I wasn't sure if I was up to the 3 hr drive in each direction but found that I could handle it without any problems.  The problems come when I have to stand up, sit down or walk.  This called for another nifty solution in the form of another booster cushion, with handles to make it easy to carry.  (It is a rough job as I did it the night before the trip.)  Works a treat!

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The moment the car hits the highway past the city limits my blood pressure goes down and that feeling of well being settles over me.   I get to the top of the range and I am in another time zone.  Magic.  Besides spending time with my friend Angela, which is always great, I got to spend some money of fabric, which I don't really need but want.  We arrived at the patchwork shop and there outside was the exact fabric that I needed for backing a quilt I am making AND it was reduced to $5.00p.m. from $27.00pm.  Had to have that.

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Then there was all this other fabric I had to have.

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This is for library bags for the girls.

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And I have used all my charm packs so had to get one of those.

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Angela also gave me a pack as a memento of her trip to Canada, so now I have two.

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And as I am contemplating doing a bee embroidery I might need some lining depending on what I make, so I bought some bee fabric just in case.

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I left the shop with a bag full.

Then we had lunch at a new Deli, chicken and Leek pies with a great salad.  We finished the day shopping at Hanna's Department Store. I love this shop.  You get wonderful service and no pressure and they write the dockets the old fashioned way and add to totals using mental math!  (There was more than one docket!)

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We then headed upstairs via the lift and found some seersucker table cloth materials.  Had to have some of this.  I made one square tablecloth,

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and one round one, I like the round one best. It sits better on the table.  I might have to think about remaking the red one.

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I came home tired but very happy.




The legs are a problem!

My ankles and knees have decided that they will only work for a short period of time, then they say "that's it we are on strike!"  As a result I am doing a lot of sitting, again.  This has given me some time to ponder the problems of getting up and down into a chair.  They Physio says that I am doing damage to my other shoulder getting up and down and I couldn't stand to lose the other shoulder as well.

Then I came up with a nifty solution.  A bolster cushion.  I sent my husband out to buy me a 10cm thick piece of high density foam and it works a treat.  I can stand up and sit down without using my arms.  I made an under cover while I was thinking about how I would cover it.

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I have so much fabric here I will never use it all so I have pulled out a charm pack and patched it.  It now sits on one of my design boards ready to be made up.

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I have sent my husband out again to buy two more cushions.  The second is a bit smaller in diameter and this one I intend to add handles to so that I can take it with my.  I don't care if it looks strange as long as I can stand unaided.  (The doctor has given my a disability sticker for the car so I won't have that long walk from the car-park to the ferry.)

So I am on the machine and beginning to quilt again.



Children's Classes and Copyright

Our Children's Classes are on again at the moment and for 2019 we will be using "Free Patterns" from various sources.  Alongside this we will be teaching awareness of copyright.  I thought that this would be a straightforward exercise.  NO!  There are different rules in different countries and what applies in Australia doesn't apply in the USA or the UK.  (I have no idea about Europe or Asia.)  So, even though the first pattern is free from the internet and we fulfill the conditions of the designer I believed it was better to make contact and inform them of what we were doing.

This design is from Kelly Fletcher and I found a copy of the original free pattern from the English Women's Weekly magazine in the Guild's transfer pattern collection.  Kelly has adapted it to make this design, then I have changed the stitching to suit the students ability level.

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I have been trolling through the boxes of transfer patterns and came up with this one from" Weldon's Ladies Journal January 1934."

This company has closed and gone out of production many years ago.

Scan 9

From what I can work out the copyright has expired. It lasts for 25 years which would take it to about 1959, and in some circumstances there is provision for it to be extended for another 50 years.  That would still take it to about 2009.  So I think I am safe to say that the copyright has expired, I hope.  (Fingers crossed.) How confusing.  I think the safest thing to do if you using it for profit or to enter a competition would be to try and contact the designer or publisher and ask permission to use the image.  For just personal use I don't think there would be a problem.


I am really scared of snakes.  They give me the creeps.  I keep my eyes peeled all the time for them as we have some big pythons that live on the island.

But it Myanmar (Burma) they see snakes differently.  Here there are legends of kind, magical snake-like beings known a nagas.  They are said to live in the rivers, lakes oceans and at the bottom of wells.

This sculpture depicts the goddess  who rules over these spirits and her name is Naga Mae Daw. People pray to her for good luck and protection.  (Didn't know that!)

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Still looks like a snake to me even though it is a ceramic.

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And it still gives me the creeps.

Jakkai Siributr - 2

These tapestries are very interesting.  The use of running stitching, in much the same style can be seen in Kantha work from India and Boro from Japan.  This is very much the same style of stitching and Thai people say it is there traditional form of stitching.  As yet I can't find the name they use.

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In the craft markets I visited on my recent trip to Thailand the use of the stitch was prominent.

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Along with some western influence as well.

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Jakkai Siributr - 1

I am going to have to go back to this exhibition.  My legs gave out after about 45 mins and I didn't see half the things I wanted to.  By the time I got home I was a wreck and my aching legs kept me awake all night.

But to continue:


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The embroidery appears to have been done separately, the shapes then cut out and appliqued to the dress.

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A very interesting way to portray family life.

A trip to the gallery (QAGOMA)

It is time for the Asia Pacific Triennial Exhibition again.  I have been attending these since 1993 and they have grown in size and importance since then.  We get to see lots of works from Asian countries and the Pacific Islands that are not usually on the radar.

The most emotionally moving piece for me was an aboriginal piece from Australia.  Not only beautiful to look at but it was accompanied by wonderful sounds and the smell of eucaliptus.  It was a collection of tools arranged in a mobius shape and included tools used by males and females..

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Screen Shot 2019-01-11 at 12.12.01 pmWhen you looked into this work each sculpture was perfect and on studying the shadows they reflected one could see different birds and fish.

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I want to go back and just sit with this one after all the crowds have gone.  It is a meditation as well as a work of art.