Monday 30 April 2012

RIP Mooshy

Thank you everyone for your kind thoughts and words in the comments, our pets really have a way of touching our hearts, don't they?

Our little cat Mooshy has died. She was a beautiful and gentle cat. She had lunge cancer, which I didn't realise could happen to cats. She was very ill and had to be euthanized.

In December she started losing weight very rapidly but had her normal appetite. We took her to two different vets and run tests, but both times nothing was detected. Both put her weight loss down to her getting old. Then, this last week, she had grown thinner and stopped eating altogether and looked so unhappy, so we took her back to see the vet, expecting him to say the same thing, that she was just getting old. Unexpectedly, after another morning of tests, he told us how very unwell she was. She was only clinging to life and in a lot of pain. We didn't know she wouldnt be coming home with us when we took her in, so it was a suprise. It's always sad to lose a much loved pet, especially when they have been in the family for 15 years.

She was always napping in my fabric stash or guarding the ironing board (which gave me a good reason to put the ironing off for later), and she loved watching me quilt and tapping at the sewing machine whilst I worked. I will miss my little companion whenever I sew or read, she was always by my side and gave all of us so much love and pleasure. She will be much missed in our house.

Friday 27 April 2012

A little bit of fresh air...

Winter has a beauty all it's own, so when my DH had some time to spare yesterday, we decided to go for a drive and take in some fresh air. Yes, I have a long list of things to do, but sometimes you just have to stop and appreciate the trees...and I'd rather admire tree moss than do the ironing!

I love toadstools and mushrooms of all kinds too, especially the poisonous ones, they seem to be the most picturesque!

On the drive home, this rainbow was 'following' us. We couldn't stop as we were on a freeway, and this picture is through the car window... but it really made my day to see such a radiant rainbow streaming colours through the gloomy rainclouds.

It's really the simple things that are so wonderful.

Wednesday 25 April 2012

WOW: Winter Cooking

WOW = WIPS On Wednesdays

Winter has really arrived down my way: the heating is on, it's raining outside and it's time for some serious slow cooking. I love cooking in my crock pot, I think slow cooking is a quilter's best friend. It means I can mix everything together, forget about it for 8 hours and then return after a days quilting to serve dinner.

This morning I have prepared my ingredients, mixed it all together and now I've got a day of sewing to look forward to. I feel productive already...and it's not even 9am!

How's Your Wednesday?
Hopefully this week I will be able to leave a comment when I stop by your blog, I've been having ongoing troubles with commenting on other blogs for a while now, this problem comes and goes. I just want you to know I visit each and every WOW, it's my wednesday / thursday ritual!

Wednesday 18 April 2012

WOW: Learning Curves

WOW = WIPs On Wednesdays

Remember when I asked your opinion about whether or not to get a Kindle? You overwhelmingly thought it was a great idea, most of you recommended it and many of you told me how much you loved yours. I knew nothing would ever replace books for me, but I also knew I was tired of carrying multiple books around when travelling.

Well, I have wanted a Kindle for a while now, but with one thing and another, hadn't given it much thought since that post last year...well not until DH bought home a tablet for us each last week.

Excited? Not really, at first I thought it was just another piece of technology 'I was going to have to adapt to'...and I was right, it has been a learning curve! However I have since realised the advantage of a tablet for me is browsing the web, checking emails and reading without the need of a 3.5kg laptop- which can get cumbersome when travelling. I'm still getting used to my new gadget, but am growing very keen on it already. I would never have wanted one before I got used to mine, but now I am starting to really love pulling out a slim journal sized 'access portal', wherever and whenever I want.

With the new tablet in the house, I decided to get savvier all round and have also enrolled in a Step On Pins online class and am working though my lessons...and I have to say, I am starting to get the hang of it! 5 years ago I would never have thought that my quilting interest would become so technically based, I had no intention of doing 'computer related things' and now I find that so much revolves around technology, I don't know how we lived without it!

Today I am working through a Step On Pins online Class...and I'm actually looking forward to it!

How's your wednesday?

Tuesday 17 April 2012

Cosmos Block

Details from my Cosmos Block from Part 3 of my Mystery BOM: Forget Me Not.

What a fun block this was to make. As I am making 2x quilts, each month I have to consider which block will best suit my dark quilt background and which block will suit my yellow background?

So far it's been really easy to decide. These cosmos pinks just sing out against the black whereas the Calla Lily white against my yellow background really suited. Of course, another consideration is that almost each listed flower option can have it's colouring changed. The colours I select are exactly that - the colours that speak to me, but you might yet change them to suit your own quilt background. I love the pink peony of last month's block, but I can assure it looks just as good in cream. And that's another advantage of the Yahoo Group - seeing what everyone else is up to with the same pattern.

Take the pattern and colour it in before commiting with fabric, it gives you an instant visual on the look you are creating.

Select the right tone of pinks that work with your backgroud. My background is dark, so it was easy for me to use bright, vivid pinks.

I used raw edge applique for this block

and, I added petal lines with my Prisma pencils in assorted pink shades

I added a small amount of wadding for the centre yellow circle
of the flower for some dimension. 

...simple but lovely, just like a Cosmos flower!
How will you make yours?


Esther’s Free BOM 
Forget Me Not’ is my current free BOM
Blocks are available via my Yahoo BOM Group or Website only.

Monday 16 April 2012

Calla Lily Block

Details from my Calla Lily Block from Part 3 of my Mystery BOM: Forget Me Not.
Well, it was only a matter of time until the lily block arrived and here it is.

The technique used for the lily is turn edge applique, just like my Peony block last month.
 Once again, I used pencils shading to add some green around the yellow stamens.

Sewing the leaf lines. Like last month, I am sewing the back of the leaf so that the 'wrong side' becomes the right side and the the bobbin work is what you see on the front of the leaf.

I do this because I used thicker / heavier thread to achieve this look. This is done before the leaf shape is cut out, it just makes working the stitches so much easier.

 You can of course embroider the foliage background, I opted to sew it in

The pattern calls for tiny red points at the tips of the background foliage. I haven’t added these in yet as I am undecided on how or if I will do them. Because my background is yellow, I am still yet to decide if they work or not. 
The red tips might be too much…or I might change the tip colour so that it doesn’t stand out as vividly as red- on -yellow is certain to! These are the little changes that need to be considered when working with your selected backgrounds.
What will yours look like?

Tomorrow: details of the Cosmos block!

Esther’s Free BOM
‘Forget Me Not’ is my current free BOM
Blocks are available via my Yahoo BOM Group or Website only.

Sunday 15 April 2012

Forget Me Not Part 3 is launched!

This month we are creating either a beautiful Calla Lilly block or a joyful Cosmos block, the choice is yours! Remember, you need only make one block per month. I am making both because I am making 2x quilts ( 2 x DDs!) and the real pleasure of this is that no two Forget Me Not Quilts will be the same.

Over in my Yahoo BOM Group you can download the current block for free. The other advantage is the helpful chat we exchange with each other – sharing ideas and sharing photos. I have to say, whilst I love the chatter, seeing the newly posted photos of blocks is a real highlight of my day!
The Corn and Sunflower and Peony Blocks from last month look amazing, I am so impressed with what you have all done with them!
Tomorrow I will post up close pics of the block…

Esther’s Free BOM
‘Forget Me Not’ is my current free BOM
Blocks are available via my Yahoo BOM Group or Website only.

Saturday 14 April 2012

Sneaky Peek!

Who's ready for Part 3 of
Forget Me Not Mystery BOM, released tomorrow?

here's a sneaky peek of what to expect...

Esther’s Free BOM

Forget Me Not
is my current free mystery BOM

Wednesday 4 April 2012

WOW: Easter Egg Cozy

WOW = WIPs On Wednesday

Easter Egg Cozy is finished! I love it!

I was going to pop a chocolate Easter egg beneath my bunny cozy, but can you believe, there's no chocolate...Easter kind or otherwise in the house. So Easter Bunny is decidedly healthy this year and warming a better kind of egg.

I added some felt flowers around the edge
and voila! here he is, front and back

This week's linky will last longer than usual
so that you can share any last minute Easter items with everyone!

2017 update
This pattern was released for free to my online quilting BOM Group back in 2012. It is no longer available for free, It can be purchased for $2 USD as an instant download PDF digital pattern. 

Tuesday 3 April 2012

Easter 2012 Project

Easter Egg Cozy

I think this little bunny is too cute, he's from my sketchbook and the fabrics are all from my stash, so he's a stash busting bunny! 
After drawing him onto my fabric, I stitched the outline on my machine with wool wadding behind to give him some shape. Looking at the reverse image (below) I realised that he would look pretty cute the wrong side up too.

Then I coloured him in with Prismascolor pencils and Indian Ink

Then I outlined the overall shape and cut him out with a seam allowance

 Heat set the pencil work
Select the egg cozy background. I opted for felt.

Stitch the bunny down, turning the seam allowance edges as you go. You could also raw edge applique him if you wanted to.
And lightly stuff to puff out the bunny shape as you stitch
Don't forget his tail...
and this is the shape you will end up with. Simply stitch the outline together to create the cozy. I used 1 inch felted wool for the bottom edge you see here, cut with pinking shears.

I will post pics of my finished cozy tomorrow...

2017 update
This pattern was released for free to my online quilting BOM Group back in 2012. It is no longer available for free, It can be purchased for $2 USD as an instant download PDF digital pattern. 

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