Sunday, September 18, 2011


Have just come back from the Wenty Quilters Show.  Went with Coral the Quilting Queen who, of course, knew most of the people there.  The Wenty Quilters are quite famous in Western Sydney - quite a large group - so large that it has a waiting list would you believe.  Anyway their bi-annual show is excellent and it did not disappoint this time.  It was held at beautiful Linwood House.

The main hall way filled with quilts

Look a long suffering husband passing his time reading about the 
house and ignoring the quilts

The House itself is National Trust - beautiful Federation style with tesselated floors and carving and leadlight (above it the fanlight and side lights for the front door.

There was of course a shop and you will all be proud - only bought two quite small things......this is amazing considering the temptation that there were on offer.  I got out of the well under $100 - this I can tell you is a first!!!!!

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Crafty Weekend in the Blue Mountains

After a few false starts and some mishaps The Sisters of the Travelling Quilt (more of this later) did actually manage to go for our crafty weekend.  We have been doing this for several years now.  A group of women at work, all who are craft fanatics or varying sorts decided we would escape from kids and work and housework and husbands etc every now and again.  We started as a group who met occasionally in one of our houses for a day of sewing and laughing and all know what we mean.

Anyway....latest instalment was at Katoomba in the beautiful Blue Mountains west of Sydney.  It only takes about an hour to drive there from most of the suburbs where we live, so it is perfect and the travelling does not impact on the crafty, laughing, eating etc.

The house we stayed in was called "Lyrebird Loft" - up a bush track that even an agile goat would have had second thoughts about, through the scrub for a short way and then there was the house, perched on the edge of cliff with a view that took your breath away

Here is the verandah which overlooks the view above.  The yellow tree is wattle which means that Spring is on its way.

As always with these little excursions, we never starve, so we had roast lamb and vegetables and gravy for dinner and patisserie cakes that Jen B brought.  Stoked up the wood fire, and drank and laughed and actually did some sewing.

We have infected Jen B with the quilting bug.....she is very crafty by nature, with a great sense of colour - she is actually Australia's answer to Martha Stewart....but she is now also a quilter.  Up to now she has been a crochet person, but we took her to a quilt show at the Rosehill Racecourse and she got sucked in by one of those chenille baby quilt kits. So she started on that.  She got her sewing machine out of the cupboard where it had resided for some years (her mother will be very pleased with this as it was a present from her mother, who was a little disappointed that it did not get more use).  Away she went sewing one big block to another big block....and that was all it took.  The Quilting Bug is more virulent that Ebola.  She kept saying "It's so much quicker than crochet!!"  She basically finished a lap sized baby quilt that evening!

Then there was Iris likes a chat on a hot day....if you know what I mean.  But when she is sewing - not a word - rather disconcerting really.  Like kids when they are quiet you tend to go and check them to make sure they are alright!!  She finished 3 quilt tops over the weekend and basically got all the blocks complete for a fourth.

The top quilt does not give anything like the impact of the actual quilt.  My camera is not the very best.  The blocks are purple and grey patterns and the border is dark purple....very impressive.

Kaz is another one of our converts to quilting and she finished two quilts as well...somehow the second picture went astray...but this jelly roll quilt is lovely.

I actually finished one as well....but to be honest it had been in hibernation for some time.  You know when you start a quilt all full of enthusiasm and then you meet obstacles and the enthusiasm wanes......anyway I discovered that I had actually done all the stars for this quilt and only had to do the quite simple block border.  I am still considering if it needs a border....will have to think about it.  What do you think?

Dont you love quilts that have feet!!!  In this case my quilt has two pairs of feet and a hand!!!

Having been doing a lot of cross stitch recently I really did love getting back to the immediacy of quilting.  I think I have been won over by jelly rolls....Coral the Quilting Queen (who could not come this weekend sadly) gave me a book of jelly roll patterns and both Iris and I are doing patterns from it.  I, of course, in my usual way picked a complicated once with 340 flying geese.  But they are all finished and only have to be sewn together.  When I post this I am going to the sewing room to do just that.

So thank you Sisters of the Travelling Quilt for a lovely weekend.  The Sisters started on one of our other weekends......we have decided to make blocks inscribed with some of the silly things we have said during the weekend.....this weekend will be "Was there garlic in that lamb?"  This from Iris....her digestive system does not react well to garlic.....I will say no more on this subject!!

Hello to all my followers....wish you had been with us....happy stitching!!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Finally something to show (off!!)

Have been busy so apologies for no blogging.  My excuses are a family wedding - my sister got married!! - my eldest son turned 17 and went for his driving test and failed (and was devastated!) and in amongst all that got close enough to finishing some things that with a clear conscience I can show you pictures.

First my sister married Katoomba Court House.  It was very charming and relaxed and friendly and we all blew bubbles instead of tossing confetti or rice.....I am sure the cleaner was happy about that!  

Beautiful bouquet with mixed pink roses and white ranunculus (hope that is how you spell it?)
The flowers went perfectly with the purple dress and the lovely green beads.  

Poor old big son having survived the 120 hours of practice hours that are required - mostly with me A VERY BAD PASSENGER - he then went for his test.  Darling son gets very nervous - he actually said his foot was shaking on the pedals as he started his test.  Oh wouldn't you just love to be able to do some of these things for them (useless in the long run I know but it just tears at your heart seeing them stressed).  On top of that he had to go through the worlds worst roundabout near the motor registry.  It is large, multi-laned and has traffic lights which are pedestrian activated.  During the whole of the 120 hours we had been practising the lights had never been activated.  I am sure that I had explained to him how they worked, and so would the driving instructor, as this roundabout is always part of the driving test at Blacktown Motor Registry.  But even with 30 years driving experience it is A BASTARD OF A THING!!  Anyway the upshot was that he hit the roundabout just at the traffic lights were starting to flash amber....he was close enough to go through them without losing marks, but he was so nervous and so busy making sure that he got through the roundabout that he did not see that traffic lights on the exit side of the roundabout, which by the time he got there had turned red.....FAIL!!  As I say he was devastated....close to tears my husband said - which is a big call for a 17 year old boy.  He was a bit more philosophical about it when I spoke to him that night when I got home from work.....but still, he hates not being able to do he said "I got really nervous mum....I wanted it so much"  Brings tears to the eyes.  So we are still practising and he gets to retry on Tuesday.  (saying little prayer!!)  Have actually bought him a bottle of vitamin based/natural ingredients "Chill Pills" (that is their name!!) and if all else fails the placebo effect will kick in and he will be a bit more relaxed for the next test.  

I have discovered there is a group on Facebook about this BASTARD that tells you something doesn't it.

Then of course I have to face the even scarier prospect of him out there by himself with all the loons who also occupy the road.  God help him!!

Anyway back to crafty stuff.  Did actually finish a couple of things and also took my Wedding Sampler and Bee's Birth Sampler up to the framers to get a quote.  Was pleasantly surprised with the price so that local man at Prospect will be framing them both.  As with most things I get involved with, there were a huge number of frames that I liked and I stood there for sometime playing with them and scratching my head.....but decided in the long run and will post photos when they come back.

Anyway here is what I have finished....I always seem to post quilts without binding....but they do get bound eventually......

This is an Advent Calendar for my nephew and nieces....I have just realised how crooked some of the little pockets are....oh well...too late now. 

Here are pictures of my Kaffe Fasset quilt - I have instructed my kids that I want this quilt in the coffin with me - happy to spend eternity with this daughter was aghast at the thought but I promised her I would haunt her all her days if she did not send me off with this quilt.