I am coping with a broken rib and have been unable to get to a Doctor to get my Vit B injection.  Everything is happening in slow motion at the moment.  I have very little ligament left in my knees, (which I knew) after operations for non cancerous growths in the knee cavities.  I am always careful because I know that I could fall.  My knees have been very painful lately but I know that more operations would leave me with even less ligament so will not have them done and just put up with the pain.  I really don't know how I came to fall, I must have turned sideways and down I went.  Onto the hard concrete, Ouch.

So work is all in slow motion as well.

I have got all the stitching finished for the Kogin bag but have to put it together, thinking that through is a bit of a challenge at the moment.

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I have drawn up a rough design for a new applique and need to sit and refine it.  (Looking at that I think I have an idea how to solve my Kogin pattern printing problem.)


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And I have an idea hatching for a Boro (Kantha) Class.  I have made some book-covers before as gifts  I think they might make an interesting class.

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After travelling in South East Asia I was surprised just how wide spread this type of stitching was.  I found the same kind of work in India, Mirimar, Thailand, and Vietnam.  The big difference was the colours of the fabrics.  All used the indigo colour but in India they used bright coloured fabric.  It leaves a lot of scope for what I could do.

Palistinian Embroidery

At first glance this type of embroidery just looks like cross stitch but it is so much more than just cross stitch.  Traditionally it is called Tatreez and all the patterns have special meanings.  The patterns are mostly geometric, following Islamic tradition.

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In an exhibition that I once helped hang there were a number of women's dresses which were torn at the neck and then repaired.  I was told that this denoted that the wearer had been a widowed.

This company, that I found on-line, has some stunning embroidered scarfs in their shop.  (there is a lot of eye candy just to look at here.)


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I also subscribe to the Maydel newsletter and they also have a lot of Palestinian designs at the moment.  I am really tempted by this design.

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They do have a great video tutorial on how to decorate clothing using some of these designs.

Screen Shot 2021-09-10 at 6.21.34 pmThis one is a keeper.



It is coming to the end of term so working on assignments with my grand daughter on her home schooling takes up a lot of my time and has taken over most of my space. (Maths has changed a lot since I was at school and she is far better than me at Japanese.)

I am stitching a new Kogin piece for next years class.  My computer with the drawing program got replaced with a new computer for Monique and I have nothing to draw those types of designs on.  The drawing program I have does great vector drawings but doesn't print a grid.  I might just have to learn how to use illustrator, which is super expensive.

So it is back to the graph paper but I still find stitch and see just as good.  I am using an old design but am adapting it to fit the fabric I have.   Allana used the same design in it's original form on one of the bags she stitched.

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My version is similar but my space is smaller.

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A lot of trail and error, then reverse sewing.  But I think I have got it now.  I'm sure this is how the old people did this work.  They didn't have computer programs or even graph paper to work out their designs.  It might have been easier to just cut a larger piece of fabric!

Where I live and planning some more knitting

I am a bit stiff and sore after digging a new flower bed but it is spring and time to get things in the ground to grow. 

My 'feral flowers' this week are all from the bush with the exception of a few lavender flowers I put it for their perfume and a couple of azalea flowers for colour. The rest are considered weeds.   The crucifix orchid also come in a pink, purple and yellow but it is the orange ones that have gone wild.

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It has been a sad week with the death of a childhood friend across the border.  There was no opportunity to see her again or talk to her but that is COVID.  My cousin, who is also across the border has cancer, caused by the drugs she was given when she was treated for breast cancer a number of years ago.  Our mothers where first cousins who were brought up as sisters and my mother died from breast cancer and her mother survived.  We know that we carry the gene and Beverly has been the unfortunate one who got the very aggressive form.

Her daughter so wanted children but after years of IVF treatment finally gave up.  Now at 44 years of age she finds herself pregnant.  I just gave away all my baby wool stash thinking I would never need it again.  I should have known something like this would happen.  I can order more wool on-line to knit her a hap.

A Hap is a Scottish shawl that can be used for a babe or an adult.

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This pattern is from Shetland Traders.

The Danish Royals left hospital with their twins wrapped in haps.

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This pattern is an old Paton's one that I have used before.  You can still get it on-line.

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But we know the new baby is going to be a boy so perhaps a blue hap would be better?

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The baby is due in January so I might look at knitting it in 1ply yarn?   I can get that from Bendigo Woollen Mills or from Scotland.Screen Shot 2021-09-05 at 11.51.02 am

J & S knitting mills have a good article about haps.

And as an extra I see that Julie Williams from Little Cotton Rabbits is going to put out a koala pattern.  I must get that.

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I need to get my current knitting finished so I can get started.



I am working on my Kogin class.  I started with an edge to edge design but as I stitched it out realised that the counting would be too hard for some people.  With this in mind I extracted the centre design and have just stitched that part, to begin.  I am also using the very last of my old cotton.  (The manufacturers reduced the metreage in the skein for the new cotton.)  And you know like all older threads it tends to knot, so I will be happy when that is used up.

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The knitting is back out of the bag again.  This is being knitted in one piece, no seams.  I put the sleeve onto 4 needles as I think that it will be easier to manage.

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The native grass that I planted near one of the bird baths actually has flowers.  So pretty.  I will have to think about that as an embroidery design.  I have that AGM to night and will be glad to see the back of that.

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Back to those faces

I have set my work on the portraits aside.  I don't know life kind of gets in the way.  There are so many things that need attention, all at the same time.  But I do want to get them done.  I have been looking at how other people on line are stitching them and then I thought, what if I look backwards.  A long way.  Right back to around the times of Medieval times.  There was a lot of faces stitched in the Opus Anglicanum manner.  Problem is I don't know how to do that stitching.

I have a kit in the cupboard that I bought in Bayeau, France, I haven't stitched that because I'm not sure how to do it.  Time to think about doing it.  So I open up my computer and start looking for instructions, free if possible, but I'm open to paying for the class as well.

In my list of blog links, (that is so long I rarely look at them) I found a link to https://www.opusanglicanumembroidery.com . Now, I also have a HUGE photo collection of Medieval lead light windows, again mostly of faces and before I started this project was going to stitch those.  This site had lots of kits for sale, to add to ones I already have.  I loved the hounds, and have just realised where I have seen them before.

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But I suppose the ladies face would be better.

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Still, this doesn't show me how to stitch it.  So over to the blog https://opusanglicanum.wordpress.com to see what I can find.

Here I found a link to a free class on You Tube.  Great little video with clear instructions.  After I stitch this I think I might have a look at one of the classes.


I also found this 2 video set which gives a demo of the stitches you can use as well. 

I still think that I will purchase a class after this, just to get it right.




Where I live

Not being able to get out and about, most of my life seems to be centred around my home.  That is not necessarily a bad thing, just a bit different and I am sure there are a lot of other people around the world who's lives are much the same.

I had wanted to buy the house at the back of mine to move it onto another block so I could have a big garden but that didn't happen. 

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So, I have put most of my attention into the garden I have, including the patios and verandahs.


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  It is small and easy to manage and I have the bush across the road and the beach, so really I didn't need a big garden to look after.  I just wanted one.  It is a steep climb back to the house from the beach.

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Every week I collect flowers from the bush for the house.  I can't pick native plants but there are plenty of 'feral' flowers where people have dumped plants in the bush.

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I planted some more bushes to make the verandah more private and at the side of the house came upon feathers.

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My little assistant, who is my shadow alerted me to them.

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Then I noticed that the PeeWees have gone missing.  The males were always attacking their refections in the windows now they are suddenly gone.

I don't think it is the eagles, although they are always flying over.

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And I know of no cats anywhere nearby.  I suspect some of those big crows that are around are the killers.

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I suppose that is just how nature works.


The job at the moment is preparing for the AGM of the Coochiemudlo Artisans Collective.  So much paperwork!!  The meeting is next Wednesday 1st September.  As secretary I am preparing for the incorporation of the group.  It will be my job to get this task completed over the coming months.

So to other work.

I have the quilt all pinned up ready for quilting and I have lost the use of the end of my finger due to piercing it so many times.  It isn't the backing I was going to use.  After piecing most of that I realised that I had made another quilt!!!   So I went out and bought a wide backing.  I found a wide backing in the very fabric I had used in the front of the quilt.  So I bought a bit of extra metreage, I might use that to back that 'extra' quilt I made.

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I have finished the first class sample for "Exploring More Stitches".  I might restitch this one on some other fabric.  When I priced the even weave linen it was nearly $200 per metre!!!  I'm glad I used an off cut.  But even so I was shocked at the price of linen.

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And I have a long list of other things I want to start or finish but this up-coming AGM has taken over my mind.

And inspiration did strike with an idea for the applique class.  I am going to use the fruit and leaves of the Moreton Bay Fig Tree.

Preparing classes for 2022

Yes, it is that time of year again, getting the proposed classes out there.  I am not going to do the number I would usually prepare, people are not out and about like they have been and this year I have cancelled most of my classes.  I could move them on-line, this is what my friend Teena keeps urging me to do, but, I like to meet people face to face.  Old fashioned I know.

So this year I will do Kogin, Exploring Stitches, Applique and the introduction to Embroidery.  Plus I have a few small half day classes in the works.  I am hanging out for my second vaccination jab and nothing will happen until then.  We are very lucky in Queensland to have held out so long, but the Delta variant is rampant in some of the other states and will breach the border eventually.

The class which is giving me the most trouble at the moment is my Applique Class.  I renew my designs every two years and it is time for a new design.  So, I am out there surfing, just to see what others are doing.  (I have to explain that here in Australia Applique is the American version not the U.K. one.)

Two of my favourite designers are Kathy Doughty and Sarah Flieke.  Their work is a bit different.  Kathy's book Organic Applique has lots of inspiration.  Do have a look at the 'inspiration' section of her website.  It is inspirational.

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As is Sarah's new book and video, Growing Wild.  ( I see that Sarah has moved her business completely on-line.  Teena would approve.)

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Although both books are great my problem is that I try to include at least 3 different applique techniques, needle turn, freezer paper and some form of attachment of the pieces using embroidery.  Not all designs will accommodate this.  So it is back to the drawing board.  Hopefully inspiration will strike.

Moreton Bay Fig Trees

Often when I turn up for the barge or ferry they are not there.  I have knack for arriving at morning tea or lunch time, when they don't run.  I am getting better at this and if it it lunch time I will get a take-away to eat in the car while I wait.  But the car isn't a very interesting place to sit so I have been driving down the dead end streets that run off the main road that goes to the jetty just to see where they lead. 

Whilst doing this I found a small park at the end of one of these little roads and it sits at the waters edge. It only has a garbage bin and one seat but it has a beautiful Moreton Bay Fig tree to sit under.  (My husband looks like a bushranger with his mask on.)

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The same kind of tree that was in my book 'Memorial", but this one is only a teenager.  I shouldn't have been surprised because we live right on Moreton Bay but you don't see many of these giants around.  There are some here and there but like all fig trees they have invasive roots and most people do not have gardens big enough to accomodate them. This teenager spreads its branches across the width of three properties.

The trunk of this one has seen better days.  It looks like someone started a fire here, but it survived.

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The birds have dropped seeds of the umbrella tree that have sprouted at the base and up in the branches.

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The sunlight seen through the leaves is like a painting.

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The fruit hasn't ripened as yet.  I will have to check if it you eaten by the indigenous people that lived here.  It has such a huge crop you would think so.

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It was low tide when I took these pictures.  At high tide the water come right to the edge of the grass.  You look out over what some consider just a mud flat but there is lots of sea grass that extends far out.  No wonder we have Dugong living here.

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Source: https://www.worldwildlife.org/species/dugong

This will definitely be where I will sit whilst I wait for the barge in future.

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