Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Happy Houses and stitching

I played with the Happy House blocks again today and finished a few, I am enjoying making them, and may just end up with an entire village. I will think about how to put them together after the swap has happened so they will be hanging out at this stage for a couple of months.. plenty of time to decide. I finished the stitchery ladies that I began last week. I am happy with this version and the colours are some of my favourites. Now I just need to decide how big to make the quilt that they are going in, and what to put with them. At this point my first choice is to embroider one of my favourite poems - 'When I am an Old woman I shall wear Purple' in the borders. I am glad that I acheived all this sewing in the past few days as the day job is going to get in the way again tomorrow!
Hope you are having a crafty week.
Happy Crafting

Monday, February 23, 2009

What quilt is on my bed?

Lynette Anderson posed the question what Quilt is on your bed, after showing the gorgeous quilt she is currently sleeping under, so here is a picture of my Bobby Bears quilt made using a design from the talented ladies at Angels in Disguise. I made this quilt in 2005, it is the first quilt that I completed and I kept it for me. I did the bear stitcheries in veriegated threads using lots of different colours. In winter it lives on the couch where I use it to snuggle under while stitching or reading, but is just the right weight for using on the bed at this time of year. This photo shows some of the stitchery detail. There are 25 different images and they were all fun to stitch. I did not follow the directions for the quilt construction, so while I bordered each block, I used a scrappy approach between the blocks instead of sashing.
I am still working on the stitchery ladies from the previous post and should be finished the stitching tonight. The purple fabric stash is patiently waiting its turn, I am looking forward to cutting it into lots of little pieces.
Hope you enjoyed Monday.
Happy Crafting

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Stitching and the day job

As I thought my work has begun for the year, I got a call Monday morning and worked two days in a row, a bit of a shock after two months. All this day job stuff gets in the way of crafty fun. Yesterday I recieved notification that my entry in the 'Think outside the square - quilting with circles' competition is to be part of the Living Creatively display at the coming Stitches and Craft Show. You could say I am excited! This week I started stitching this lovely design by Bronwyn Hayes of Red Brolly, which appears as an applique in Australian Homespun Magazine. It is part of a bigger project, I am not being that ambitious at present and thinking that I may just do this one. I chose to just do stitchery and not applique, so will wait and see how it comes out. The thread colours are all purples and the background fabric is a pale tan colour. I have some civil war fabrics in purple and tan tones which I am thinking will complement it to make a bigger project. Just playing with ideas at the moment and enjoying hand stitching in between the working stuff.
I haven't put the sewing machine back up since the outing we had last Saturday, which was most enjoyable. So good to be in the company of so many inspiring like minded people, and the feeling that we were able to do something to help those in need at this difficult time.
Happy Crafting

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Sharing some love

Friday I was most productive and made these two colourful Platypus from the pattern by Kate Henderson of Two Little Banshees published in the January 2009 Australian Homespun. They will be going to find new homes thanks to the Toy Society who is organising distribution to children affected by the Victorian Bushfires. I am hoping that they will brighten the lives of some little people. They were a lot of fun to make and very simple. A fantastic project from my favorite magazine. Yesterday I was out early to make my Valentines day drop for the Toy Society, I left Betsy bear in the Laneway off Pier st around 9 am hoping she would not have to wait too long to be claimed. There were already some poeple out getting their newspapers but I was able to leave her without being spotted. I had decided on this location as there are painted murals of local history and personalities on either side of the laneway, part of which is shown in the right half of the picture below.
Then I headed over to Brunswick to spend a lovely day with a group of enthusiastic sewers making fabric bags for young people affected by the recent bushfires here in Victoria. I was happy to be out doing something practical and sharing with like minded people. Thanks to Nikki for co-ordinating this sewing bee. I made several bags, well I should say I sewed several bags as there was a production line happening. These are some of my favourites, though I did make a number of bags that were in more boy colours which I liked as well I just didn't get a photo before they were collected. These bags will be used for the rainbow comfort packs being organised by Monica here.
I hope your weekend is a good one and you are sharing some love with those around you.
Happy Crafting

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Happy Houses

Unfortunately the bushfires here have continued to dominate the news and our thoughts which makes it difficult to write anything here. I am amazed at the number of people here in Cyberspace who are making practical contributions to the bushfire effort. As previously mentioned I will be making some softies to contribute to The Toy Society effort to give to children who have been affected by this disaster. The Toy Society has already notified that donated toys have begun to be distributed. I had a wander around my neighbourhood today and chose a spot to leave Betsy Bear from the last post who is to be a Valentines day Toy Society drop. I will be out early on Saturday morning to drop her off, then I am going to join some others sewing bags for another project organised for the children affected by the bushfire disaster. I have been practicing making Happy House blocks and that has cheered me no end. Not only have I been using some bright cheery fabrics, but I also managed to clear a couple of the places where scraps had been stored, amazing how they end up in all kinds of nooks and crannies. So now I have begun the process of making Happy Houses I am thinking there may just be a few more than is required for the swap. I should get some photos when I put the borders on to make them wonky. Happy Crafting

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Toys and patchwork

Yesterday I stayed in and did some sewing, which I have been making a habit of lately. I am convinced there will be work soon and I will not be able to indulge as regularly. Betsy bear is my next Toy Society drop softie. As this Saturday is Valentines Day, Bianca has organised a co-ordinated drop. This is a project I am happy to be part of and I use it to make new critters. I had fun doing this simple bear and embroidered her face and a heart for valentines. Have just been over to the Toy Society and Bianca is organising a handmade toy collection to distribute to children who have lost everything in the bushfires which have devastated whole communities here in Victoria since Saturday. My other sewing task yesterday was to try the Happy House block which Lurline has on her blog. Well as you can see I am not good at following instructions, (there is absolutely nothing wrong with the instructions) and mine turned out around the other way. Compare with the button on the right for the Happy House Swap which Lurline is organising. As you can tell patchwork isn't something I practice often, but I promise to do the blocks for the swap around the right way.
As the fires are still burning in our state and the wind has picked up again today there are more communities under threat, could you keep all the people affected by this disaster and our emergency services and volunteers in your thoughts through this difficult time.
Happy Crafting

Monday, February 9, 2009

Bag sewing

The weather here recently has made for very erratic crafting. Saturday while the weather was very hot and windy and half of the state was on fire, I stayed in and cut out. It took most of the day to cut out this bag, it really was so hot it was hard to do anything requiring any activity. Sunday was a much more pleasant day, about half the temperature of Saturday and with much less wind and even a little rain. I sewed this bag for a coffee shop friend, I have one made from the same pattern and she asked if she could have a green one. The pattern is a design by Heather Waldron called Go Anywhere bag and it is a fantastic size to take anywhere. The pattern appeared in a Handmade magazine. While I am grateful that my family who live in the fire affected areas have all escaped the devastation, family friends have lost everything they owned. My thoughts go out to all those who have lost property and family in the blazes. Happy Crafting

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Miss Violet takes a trip

Well more shopping this week, I finished the Outer Eastern Fabric Frolic. Had a good day yesterday checking out the last three shops with a friend. Not only are these three shops full of inspiration they are located in one of the prettiest parts of the greater Melbourne area. It is like taking a trip to country, but only an hours drive. I added to the stash and even have some ideas about where some of the fabrics may be utilised, so they may appear here in projects in the near future. I made Miss Violet her own quilt to go along with her on her journey around the world. I hope she doesn't suffocate in that post pak, and that she likes her new home. As always I fell in love with her as her character came out, it was hard to say good bye and safe travels. I am having a day in tomorrow and sewing is at the top of the list of things to do, I need to make the most of the last few days of my break as I am sure that it is about to come to an end, oh and they are promising some more of that extreme weather this weekend so I guess not much craft will be happening then, although there is another field trip planned to check out a new shop, will report back. Happy Crafting

Monday, February 2, 2009

Sewing and shopping

What have I been doing since I was here last - lets see well there was some fabric frolicking happening here and there. Nine shops in the outer eastern suburbs co-ordinate this event every year and you get a passport which gets stamped at each shop and there are prizes and specials. Too much fun to miss out on. I still have a couple of shops to go, I can feel a little day trip happening later this week. I also managed a bit of sewing when it wasn't too hot, and the power was on. Last week was definitely summer!! I have completed my first bear in a couple of years and enjoyed the process, sometimes I just need to take a break to remember how much I like creating things. It was almost like starting all over again as I had to be reminded of the process, it really has been that long! I tried something different this time too in that I used a floral cotton fabric for the body, paw pads and inner ears, I am very pleased with the effect of this. Introducing Miss Violet, and yes she does have a purpose this is going to my Secret Sewing Love swap partner, I just hope she likes her. While I don't have a picture of anything my neices actually completed while they were staying last month, I completed this cushion cover which Miss 9 started, but we ran out of time. Miss 9 was just making stripy, but when I decided to finish it for her I cross cut it and changed to the checkerboard design, I was able to give it to her before they left, and she really liked the way it turned out.
Happy Crafting