Wednesday, 16 December 2009

Busy Sewing

It's been scorching hot today - and being near my sewing machine was impossible, however I am very close to finishing the table runner and will have it up and available by the end of this week, most likely friday. How is yours progressing? Are you ready for Part 2 ?
I was luckly enough to receive emails from some of you sharing your favourite Cherry Thief themed photos - thank you so much for sharing these moments with me, I always love to hear from you and find out where and how Red Delicious quilt blocks fit into your world.. we all seem to have so many stories to share. Quilting really is such an evocative art and as always, it's such a pleasure to share my designs with you.

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Need A Bear Hug?

Tuesday, 8 December 2009

Christmas baking

Sewing, what sewing?

The Christmas party / group get togethers have started and so has the Christmas baking. We've been really lucky as it's not to hot to have the oven on yet, in fact it's raining - for which my garden is super grateful!

I feel very strongly about not commercialising Christmas as much as is possible - baking, gratitude and family time are the focus. The supermarket is avoided at all costs! (unbelievably the queues are already insane).

It's still to early for the really special baking that I like to do from the 20th onwards (and that's usually weather dependant over here) but the biscuits have started rolling out. Luckily my DD's enjoy making them so I get to 'supervise' without getting flour all over me. What can be easier than Classic Shortbread? So easy to make, bake beautifully - the perfect Christmas baking warm up.

Here's the recipe my DD's are using, they make a double batch of the Classic Shortbread , separate it into batches and then make each batch different with added extracts, nuts, zest, etc

Classic Shortbread
2 cups plain flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup butter (225 grams)
1/2 cup caster sugar
1 teaspoon true vanilla extract

Cream butter with sugar until smooth, add vanilla and mix well.
Stir in flour and salt.
(for batches, break up mixture now and add extracts, nuts, etc)
Wrap each batch in cling wrap. Chill for 45 minutes.
Ensure work surface and rolling pin is well dusted with flour.
Roll out dough to 1cm thickness
& bake at 180c for 10-15 minutes or until lightly crisp and golden.

Thursday, 3 December 2009

More Stash Busting

Using my time as productively as possible before the
Christmas season really sets in and I have no time for actual sewing.

More stash busting. This time I'm using a really great tool from Westalee Design, its called a "Stash Buster House Set" and it's easy to use, and I found myself getting through my fabric easily. It's so nice when stash busting can be fun.

I haven't actually made a Jelly Roll (this tool is ideal for Jelly Rolls) or House quilt before, then a few weekends ago I caught up with Leonie and Bill at the AQM in Vic and Leonie had a sample of some fabric worked with this tool...and my DD who was with me instantly fell in love with the pattern it makes. She calls it 'honeycomb' and promptly demanded a big throw for the house in
cool yellows and forest greens (added to the growing
quilt list) so I had to buy it and give it a go.

Of course it took me a few weeks to even sit down and open the packet, but just yesterday I started playing around and I'm so glad I did.

Although I always love designing new quilts, most end up on the wall, and with so much fabric in my studio,
it's ridiculous that I don't have more 'throw' quilts
that I can just have around the house or add to a bed when its chilly. My DD's are always complaining about the lack of quilts in the house...for a quilter!

Here I'm using a 'christmas set' of fabrics which also happens to be heavy on reds. However, I am also planning on making a large 'multi coloured' version.

This tool is perfect for those days when you want to
work on something productive, without having to
think too hard...

You probably all know Westalee Design Quilting Rulers, and I've added a link on the sidebar to their website. I definitely recommend their rulers and products. I was lucky enough to win $500 worth of their goods when my Quilt Sunshine and Shadow (won Best Original Design) and since then Bill has even gone to the trouble of 'inventing' a modified ruler (which I havent had time to trial yet *Sorry Bill, I'm getting there!*) for me.

Prior to Westalee Designs, I simply made my own templates for quilts I had designed but now it's so nice to know that there are great tools available to make quilting faster, easier and more accurate than ever before. Another great bonus is that Leonie and Bill are so approachable and willing to answer any questions you might have about their range and uses.

So I really don't have any excuses not to charge through my Quilting To Do List!

Friday, 27 November 2009

Cherry Thieves is launched

I've mentioned that Red Delicious just doesn't feel finished yet, so this month I have continued into a "Red Room" theme.

The Red Room will continue Red Delicious’s themes and incorporate them into a room’s decor. That’s right, we’re not finished stash busting reds just yet!

Now that Red Delicious the quilt is on
my wall, my table is looking a little
empty... so what better than to create a
‘Red Room’ table runner? Delicious.

This pattern is made available to you in 2 parts. This month is part 1.

I am finishing up a few more Red Room ideas before ending Red Delicious. There will be at least another project after The Cherry Thieves Table Runner is completed...I'm still thinking about it!

I will be keeping those fabric stashes dwindling until the New Year when a new Mystery BOM will be launched.

As always, I'm struggling to bring you good pics of my work ( I think Red and White is somehow particularly hard to photograph) but I know you will all make it your own and do great things with it.

Have a great weekend!

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Red Delicious Quilted

Red Delicious is quilted!

Wow it feels great to finally finish this BOM (not that I was embaressed to see that others had finished my own BOM before me or anything!)

My only disappointment is the photo - it really doesnt do RD any justice. It looks much better in real life. Actually I have this problem with nearly all my quilts - I don't have the 'perfect' hang and shooting spot so I am always having to work around lighting and space...and the space can be something of a problem in my home. I dont know how to work around this. I always love it when my quilts are made available as 'projects' in magazines because then at least I am guaranteed a perfect photo. Oh well....

A few have asked via email and I've noticed the same question in the comments a few posts ago, so to all you who are curious: I am a domestic machine quilter. I do all my quilting on a domestic Elna 1950's model sewing machine. I also have a back up Husquarna 1950's model for when the Elna is over heated or just plain tetchy.

In my house I have several sewing machines including a Singer and a Brother and they are good machines for other sewing work, however I have found that the old Elna and Husquarna are best and I am not a big fan of the plastic fantastic generation of sewing machines that are so present today.

Don't get me wrong - I'd LOVE a long arm (think of all the projects I could conquer!) and I wouldnt mind a new domestic as well. Again though, once you are used to solid metal construction, the new machines cant help but feel flimsy. And I dont think I will ever get used to having a machine tweet or beep at me! But, in saying that - I'm always excited at new machines on the market and would give anything a trial. If and when I upgrade my machines, they will definitely be introduced right here on my blog.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Mess means Progress!

Don't put your reds away just yet!

I know, the 15th has come and gone... but you'll just have to believe me when I say, I'm working on it.

Many of you are working towards finishing Red Delicious and I am, amongst other things, working on the next BOM... however, as I've said before, Red Delicious is not yet finished.

The Red Delicious work so many of you have created has inspired me to create a few more pieces to compliment the wall hanging. I know we all still have plenty of red in our stash (although I have seen some amazing RD's made in other colours too!) and so here is a sneak peak at what is coming.

It's a table runner. Of course! what better way to show off your wall hanging???
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...