Patchwork & Quilting Feed


With so many people coming and going from the house things have to be simple.  Those simple embroideries are great for stitching whilst you are sitting chatting, so three more finished.

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One member of my Patchwork gave me a machine embroidered piece as a Xmas present.  I wasn't sure just what to do with it.  Then my grand daughters said they thought it would make a nice wall hanging.  I have added boarders and now it is all pinned up ready for quilting.

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And one of the things I didn't put into the clean up, (which has now been delivered to the Salvos) is these small panels from France.  Another gift from a travelling friend.  They are about to be made into place mats.

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And I made a new 'skirt and binding' for the piece I have in my hoop,  this means I can fit smaller pieces of linen in the hoop.  I have the next Cross Stitch ready to go.

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Although, all this may have to wait until everyone goes home.  Even then I might need a couple of days just to catch up on sleep!!

Sometimes fate steps in.

I have been agonising over clearing out all my fabrics.  I had 6 bags full of fabrics.  All in good condition, all use-able but all surplus to what I needed.  I had to steel myself to load them into the car ready to give away.  But, it just had to be done.  I am seriously considering giving up teaching at the end of this year and I will not need all those supplies. 

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Now it is done.

My daughter and son-in-law came to pick up a motor scooter, that is also surplus to requirements, on New Year's Day and to arrange a loan so that they can start the renovations on their home.  Laura is teaching 'Summer School' at the University so things have to be fitted in around that.  At breakfast she excitedly told me that she had started a 'Sewing School' as well because so many people had approached her to teach them.  "Would you like to go through my fabrics to use in your classes?" I asked. 

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Now the majority of the fabrics, a collapse-able cutting table, a bag of extra zippers etc have all gone to set up her new enterprise.  She is also dabbling in quilting, so I know my stash and library will go to a good home.  I knew she could sew and also that she is a great teacher but I hadn't put the two things together.  She has a Doctorate in Business and is academically very gifted, I would never have thought she would love stitching more than this.

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Looking back I realise that my love of stitching, which I took from my Grandmother, has been there for my family to see.  I have never tried to 'make' them like the same things as me but it has been passed on almost like 'osmosis'. 

Now I wonder if anyone will pick up on the embroidery?

Bright fabric

I was looking for bright fabric to use to make a gift and came upon this Kafe Fassett designed fabric in my stash.  It was called 'Artisan'.  Heaven knows why I bought it, I think it was on sale.

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I know I bought it from a quilting shop but it wasn't really suitable for quilting, would have been better to make clothing with but I didn't buy enough metreage.  I have used it to make an exchange gift for a member of my quilting group.

We were given a list of patterns we would like to have made up as our gift and were asked to select one.  This list was then mixed up and we were given another members name and were asked to make what they had selected.  I was given this pattern to make up for a member I know loves orange and bright colours, hence the search in my stash.

I have changed the pattern slightly by adding a thicker and softer interfacing.  Reason?  Well I think it could also be used to store jewelry and for that you need a bit thicker wadding and I didn't think she would use it as a sewing equipment holder and when I gave it to her she agreed.

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I just had to work out how to attach the brightly coloured clip that holds the cover together.  I bought a set of plastic clips and a tool to attach them but I just couldn't get them to work.  I had to do it a few times but I finally got there.  This is going to be a useful tool actually and the clips are very strong much stronger than I had thought.  I will be using them instead of the 'sew on' ones in future for this kind of project.

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Only three functions this week, as if that isn't enough! At our quilting group we got hit with this horrendous storm.  We could see it building up over the city in the distance and were hoping it would head south.

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It just seemed to intensify.

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Still, we were all set up on the verandahs and one of our members had stitched bunting with each of our names on them.

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Because of COVID we self catered with some of our members doing the cooking, which was delicious.

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We had a visit from one of Santa's Elves who was actually my God-son's boy Leo. ( Leo has MS so we all raise money for research into this disease.)

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Then the heavens opened and this fierce storm descended on us and we had to beat a retreat inside.  Little did we know, but only a short distance away, at the Hungry Jacks Take-away, which in right in the centre of all the shops where we all had been at some time, a car was washed away from the parking area and a women drowned. This creek also ran through the playground of a school where I taught.   It is just something you don't expect to happen at the local shopping centre and there are many other shopping centres who's car parks border creeks.  I'm afraid that this has shaken me.  I will be very careful in all storms now.




Just a book cover, pot holders, (I found the pattern here,) and little bags for the jams.


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This year is nearly finished so time to set up a new diary.   I thought I would play around with some scraps of fabric I had.  No real plan, just stitch and flip.  It fitted the front of my 2022 dairy so I made it into a book cover.  The other fabric I found on a fabric scrap table.  This diary if for my quilting and embroidery meetings, classes and important dates, like the dates of all my friend's birthdays.

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I had a tutorial, back years ago (2011), for this book cover.  Still works.  The only thing I have changed is that I have bound the edges of the flaps, it looks neater.

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Things keep changing

It is the thing that things do, change that is, but I am finding it hard to deal with at the moment. 

My local patchwork shop is closing down and I was just getting really comfortable with going there.  I was only in there yesterday and today I get an Email telling me they are closing.  It isn't as if I hadn't expected it might happen, the owner Margaret is about my age and her husband died recently, but, I didn't want it to happen. 

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There are other patchwork shops. A bit further away and it will mean a special trip to get there.  Now that might make me use some of the fabrics that I have stock piled. 

My machine servicing man, Martin, has been moved to palliative care,  he had only just retired a few months ago.  He was such a support to me when I was running Textile and Design course in High Schools.  I would normally have about 50 sewing machines and he kept them in tip top condition, no matter what.  When I retired from the Education Dept. he helped me set up my sewing school that I ran.  Such a supportive special man.  He always ran special in-service days for my staff and kept me up to date on the latest developments of technology and sewing and he loved what he did.

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I have made so many special friends though out my life who have shared my love of sewing and textiles.  I am so grateful to all of them for their support and care for me.  I always knew these relationships were special and now that change is destablising my little world I appreciate them all so much more and I thank God for the blessing of having had them in my life.


Stuck at home.

Oh, that second vaccination shot date is getting closer, only a couple of weeks to go.  But until then I am stuck at home, mostly.  I missed the Carnival of Flowers and the Quilt Exhibition due to these broken ribs, that is 2 years now that I haven't seen these.  I am feeling quite sorry for myself.  Luckily I have the internet and even if I can travel here at home, or, overseas I can look at some of what I am missing on my computer screen.  So here is some eye candy.  Just sit and dream of the day when we can hit the road again.


Happy Birthday Pammie.

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.


Well as you can see from the last couple of posts I am drawing patterns for new embroideries.  I haven't been able to put my mind to this for ages but that Japanese fabric gave me so many ideas.  Then, I walk the dog twice a day and this takes me through the bush.  I never actually 'saw' some of the things that have now claimed my attention.  Amazing what one little thing can start.

So I am working on another small embroidery, this time of some gum leaves.  I was taken by the fact that the colours were the same as some thread that I had in my thread box, this is a Stef Francis thread.  The leaves are just gum leaves but the shapes and colours caught my attention.  It may not work out, but I will give it a try.

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My knitting is still here.  It has been unpulled and re- knitted a number of times but now I am up to the sleeves.  As the weather is on the turn I think this will be for next winter, so I have made it a little larger.

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And I'm still working on the backing for the quilt.   I have to use the left over fabric so it will be almost another quilt!

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Well, I have finished the quilt top, still the backing and the quilting to go. 

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But I am so pleased with the result.  I added borders that make the quilt a perfect size for a single bed, with a decent over-hang.

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I also love the fabric I found for the outer border. 

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It is a Japanese print of an embroidered fabric.  I am going to draw up some of these motives and see what they look like when they are stitched out.

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Now for the backing.


Looks like I'm going to be in lock down for another 7 weeks until I can get my second vaccination.  My little student will be unable to come here  and my life is going to be very contained.  Still, that's life in a pandemic. 

I am working on my quilt and it is slowly coming together.  All the vertical pieces are now in place and I will start on the horizontal ones tomorrow.

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But all those little 2" squares shed so many threads.  I seem to be covered with them so I have stopped to make myself a sewing apron.  I lost my original pattern so I had to start from scratch.  I now have it all cut out ready to begin.

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The kitchen island bench makes a great cutting table.  When I was teaching full time I always had access to drafting paper, not now.  I had a roll of paper I bought from IKEA for the grandchildren to paint on and I got creative with the sticky tape.  Does the job.  This time I am going to put the pattern where I can find it again.