I have a major recycling project on my hands at the moment.  I had to pull out my spare sewing machine to lend to a friend (her machine had completely frozen,  I think it might be rust.)  And when I got it out from under the bench I found 2 big bags of scraps from my last quilt.  I'm glad I didn't put them in the bin because I have been able to make 16 place-mats from those bits and pieces, or I will once I get them going.

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I have now pieced all the small pieces of wadding and off cuts and layered my mats ready for  quilting.

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The first 6 are from a piece I found at Vinnies a while ago.  It was a cat print, so not technically part of my off cuts, but it is recycling.

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I am way behind on my 50 place-mats for charity but this effort, when I finish, should put me within striking distance.


So I have finished the first trial run of a brooch.  I am quite pleased with it, although, I didn't have the right coloured beads to sew around the edge.  I would have preferred a dull yellow. ( It is about  2 1/2" diameter in size.)

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I stitched this using broad chain but I think the next one will be in a normal chain stitch.  The fabric does the job but I want to try out a thinner linen.  I was able to iron it very flat on the back but I think this can be improved.

As normal the stitching was a pleasure and seemed to take no time.  It was the finishing that took the longest.  Hopefully this will improve as I stitch more of them.


I have started my Quaker samplers, Two Sisters, for my grand daughters.  Oh I do like to sit and relax with some music and just stitch.  I have to watch that I don't get carried away and just keep stitching, so I am limiting myself to one length of stranded cotton.  I divide the thread and thread my 3 needles and then just stitch.  Heaven.

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I am in the process of revamping some classes and designing new projects for others.  I actually find this kind of work exciting, although that excitement is tempered with quite a bit of swearing when I don't get the result I want and I have to start again.

The object of my attention at the moment is my "Machine Finishing" class.  In the past this class was just a series of samples but over the last couple of years I have moved to small projects that include those skills.  I find that there are always people in this class who don't know how to use their machine properly for straight sewing and zig zag.  You can't do anything without these two skills.  So I think this little bag, that takes less than 20 mins to sew and includes lots of straight stitching should do the trick.

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I get to see who needs a bit of extra help and the students get a finished product before the morning tea break.


Now that I have given this as a gift to my friend Angela I can show the finished piece.  I had it framed but found it hard to photograph because of the glare on the glass.  So this is the piece before it was framed.  I really liked working on this one.

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I stitched up those little pieces from Embroiderers Day and am making them into pin cushions.

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It was really enjoyable to do something quick and easy, embroidery wise.  I can't say the same thing for the machining.

I backed each one with some old quotes that I had bought by the metre in Houston.  These were left over from gifts I bought my friends.

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I wish I could stitch quicker!  Especially when I am testing ideas.  There are the highs when it works and the lows when it doesn't but then, how can I make it work?

It has taken a week to work up these three pieces from start to finish, and I still have another 6 designs I want to try.

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As usual it is getting the finishing right that takes the time.  Not only does it have to look right it has to be 'do-able' for a child.

So the deer outlined in Palestrina stitch looks really good, but will little ones be able to stitch this?  I know they can handle the whipped back stitch that I used on the other ones.  But this stitch used on the join isn't as good as the laced broad chain used on the first and forget about the join on the smaller one alltogether.

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Then again, I am wondering how it would go if I stitched around that circle using a perle thread wound onto the bobbin and then sewn on the machine?  I might be able to loosen the tension and then whip it using a double thread?  This might look better?

Just by the by, I tried using off cuts from my quilt batting to pad the base, not as good as the Pellum.  Off to Spotlight to buy some more where they told me is was $27.00 per metre!!!!  NOT.  I ended up at a discount store and got it for $10.00 per metre.


There hasn't been too much that I could talk about over the last few weeks.  Firstly, I have good days and bad days and there seems to have been more of the latter over this time.

I am back on the knitting.  Front, back and two sleeves up to the armhole.  Now I have started the yoke.  I will get there eventually.

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I have started on the "Minnie Mouse" quilt for Jasmine.  It is just a cheater panel but I have added borders etc to make it bigger.  All the straight line quilting is finished now for the outlining.

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And a bit more on the Kogin project.

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Now, I have to start thinking about Xmas!!