Monday 31 August 2020

A quick finish and I'm finally catching up!

As you know, there have been a few changes in the routine here at our place. Tony's two days, two nights, four days off roster has us all a little unsettled. Poor Belle is sitting staring at his empty seat as I type. She is really not sure what to make of it all. He tried to sleep today, as it was the day between his night shifts, but Belle hopped onto the bed and made such a fuss she work him. Then later on she was crying and meowing in the hall way as he had shut her out of the room to prevent her from jumping up again. I do hope she gets used to the new routine soon. 
It does have it's advantages though, the need to be quiet while Tony sleeps has finally pushed me back into my stitching chair and I'm happy to report that I have finished June and July's Christmas ornaments. Now to catch up a little on my I stitch blocks.
I have to say, the new light Tony found for my lamp is incredibly bright. The old one was a daylight style fluorescent tube and was pretty bright. This new one is LED and seems much brighter. 
Like many of you, I'm continuing to make masks. 
Are you over it yet?
I know I am.
When I got in from work on Friday I decided to have a little rebellion and not make masks, instead I pulled out some charm squares.
Do you recall the quick little quilt top I made during the last Zoom sew along?
You can see it here, right at the end.
Well, I decided that it was not right and I wanted something a little brighter.
So it met Jack the ripper!!
After I had finished sewing the newcharms together and layered and quilted them.
I had a quick consult via messenger with Janice and Debbie.
Between us we all voted for the fabric on the left for binding.
And Voila!
One cute wee bassinet sized quilt. As you can see all made with neutral coloured fabrics. I think the charm square pack was called cafe au lait.
I thought about moving those darker squares to the corners, then decided I wasn't going to be fussy and just started sewing things together.
Sorry it's not the best photo, it was dark and I gave it to Joe and Lee already.
Maybe next time you see it, it will be in action.
Baby is due this week.
Poor Belle.
She is missing Tony.
Maybe if I go and settle into my stitchy chair, she will come and join me.

Thursday 20 August 2020

Crochet finishes, grumpy cat and a happy man.

One of the projects I worked on during the last Zoom meting/retreat with Chooky and the ladies was my crochet blanket. The one you see here on the left.
The colours here are not very good, the carpet is a soft green!
The one on the right was finished a little while ago.
They both need blocking to get rid of the curly corners.
I set out to make a larger version of the pattern on the right, but didn't enjoy the joining method I had chosen, so ended with a smaller blanket then set about the second one. Looking at them together now, I much prefer the version on the left, the second one. 
They will both go to Grand son number 2 when he arrives next month. 
I need to find myself another TV project.....
While I'm sitting here this evening sorting through my hand sewing and planning on getting back into that I had a watcher.....
Perhaps I was making too much noise?
Whatever it was, she didn't seem to approve.
And some very happy news.
My lovely Tony has started a new job this week.
It is a 14 week fixed term contract, but we have been told countless times...
'Now he has a foot in the door.....'
'Good place to work that, they keep the good ones....'
So fingers crossed these 14 weeks lead to more work.
What ever, it's good to see him happy and working, he has a spring in his step and seems quite excited by this new role. Thank you to all of you who asked about him, sympathised with his position and wished him well.
Someone heard you.

Sunday 16 August 2020

Another Incredible Day has Zoomed by.

Chooky had a birthday! So as a treat to herself and to all of us of course, she arranged another virtual retreat using zoom.
Just one day this time, not the whole weekend. LOL
It was lovely to see so many people turn up, from all over the world again. Nice to see some new faces too.  I enjoyed listening to the chat and even joined in from time to time.
I must offer here my sincerest and most humble apologies though. Life and work got in the way and I spent some time away from the sewing room dealing with things......
Before we started I had to find the laptop. It's on the table right there in this picture. 
As you can see I left a bunch of almost completed masks when I called time on Saturday night, but after I had found the laptop and connected to the party, I was summonsed to make breakfast before  I could get on with finishing those. I also did a couple of other chores in the kitchen, but more about that later.
One of my many interruptions was to make a sale. I have sold quite a few masks in the last week.
I've had some lovely comments about my fabrics, I think people are enjoying pretty masks rather than the plain paper ones.
Mask making done for the day I turned my attention to the purple fabrics I pulled for my RSC.
And three purple emperors were made.
Purple is not a colour that is high on my like list, but I seem to be using it a lot lately. LOL
I also made another of these blocks for the RSC.
The border looks a lot less pink in real life!
Another interruption was to deal with my bread.
I had set up the machine to make the dough while preparing breakfast, but then I lift it out and pop it into a loaf tin once it has risen.
That way we get a nice shaped loaf and best of all, there is no hole in the bottom where the paddle sits!
The angle at which I've taken this photo makes it look like a tiny loaf, but I assure you, it;s a normal size loaf of bread. LOL
After a lunch of home made chicken soup, (I made that yesterday, using the carcass from a hot chook from the supermarket.)  I got on a did some crochet, adding a final round to a baby blanket. That's two of those completed, so I'll have to find a new crochet project.
Then I was back sewing again. Just putting together charm squares.
A little bassinet sized top for the baby due in September. 
I now have 3-4 little tops that need quilting and binding. I'd better get on with that.
I was moving around quite a bit in my room, going from the table where the lap top sits, to the sewing machine off camera, and back on camera with my back to it while I was pressing. I feel like I got quite a lot done and also enjoyed seeing what everyone else was working on.
Very little effort will be required for dinner as another wee chore I did during the breakfast interruption was to put a piece of corned beef into the slow cooker. I just lifted it out 20 minutes ago. I'm off now to make cauliflower and cheese sauce to serve with it and creamed potatoes. 
Then it will be time to sit and hand sew for the evening. 

Sunday 9 August 2020

Making Masks.

Even though there is no community transmission here in New Zealand, we are still all to aware of the threat of Covid. Anyone who comes to the country must remain in quarantine for 14 days, and longer if you test positive.  The health service and the government have advised us to be prepared and to purchase or make masks.
Last night Tony and I went to dinner at a friends home and all of the ladies present requested that I make masks for them. So this morning I made a start. 
I used this pattern which I found on a google search. I experimented with two and three layers of fabric and settled eventually on two.
In my research I came across many methods of wearing your mask. I opted for two lengths of elastic around the back of the head as I felt that would interfere less with my specs and also help to prevent the ear pain I have heard some people had struggled with.
This one is waiting to be adjusted to the wearers head size, then a quick knot and snip off the ends and it's done.
While I was digging about looking for appropriate fabrics I came across this one.

I just had to use it, there was just enough for two masks. One for me and one for my boy Joe.
This was taken before Tony helped me to adjust the elastic.
And a properly adjusted Poppy version.
I have a few more made and many more yet to make. Some in pretty floral fabrics and some more manly fabrics.
Hopefully I can get them done fairly fast and move back to the fun stuff.
I have a new picture of Floki and Daddy.


How did your weekend go?


Thursday 6 August 2020

I blame Raedene

Or Maybe it's Chookys fault!!
Back in June, when I joined in with Chookys Zoom Meeting to celebrate the Chookshed birthday, there was lots and lots to see with many people working on many different projects. A few of them have since started making a Trail Mix quilt. That didn't inspire me, but something else did.
 And here is another version. Well, I loved what she had done and spent some time on pinterest looking for a stormy pattern and came up with this one! Sea Swept, is a storm at sea, with a twist. I fell in love as soon as I saw it. I think this is why I couldn't settle on a new scrapper project, I just wanted to get swept away to sea. Sadly, with poor Tony still out of work, my days of just tripping off to the shop and purchasing what ever I want have ended and I had to wait........
Well I just had me a birthday.
I've been a very good girl, using up all manner of scraps and left overs and making do with what I have, so yesterday as a birthday gift Tony went with me to the Quilting Shed where we purchased all of the fabric required except binding fabric. (We thought it might be better to select that after I complete the top, just to be sure we get the correct one. And it means I have to take the completed top back to the shop and Cathy can see it in person! LOL) Tony even helped to select a few of them.
All Batiks of course.  😍
I do like batiks, especially these ones, they are so bright and fresh.
For the white back ground we opted for a single white on white.
Now I just have to prepare all of the foundation papers.
There are nearly 200 required.
I've been looking at the construction method and even with careful precutting, there will be plenty of scraps once I'm done....😀
I have one more quick project to sort out, then I can begin.
I have every intention of continuing with my monthly projects along side Sea swept, so hopefully I won't bore you with lots and lots of batik blocks. LOL

Monday 3 August 2020

Weekend Roundup

As I mentioned in my last post, Chooky had another Zoom party at the weekend.
It was lovely to have 'company' while I sewed.
I listened to the other ladies chatting away and joined in occasionally too! 
I managed to achieve a few small items.
Firstly I used up some of the scraps from my recent Kaffe finish and made them into a bright table runner. I'll need to find something to bind it with. 
There are still plenty of small off cuts left for another project.
I had a tidy up in my scrap drawers and came across these leftovers from a quilt I made a couple of years ago. I made some runners at the time with some of the scraps and decided that another made with squares wouldn't got amiss. 
I like having a choice of runners and being able to change them around regularly.
Tired of waiting for my new lamp tube, I decided I would put together the blocks for I stitch.
I have three blocks worth of stitchery to catch up on.
My tube was delivered today, so catch up can commence. 😀
Janice let me know that the new colour for the RSC is purple, so I fished out a few pieces ready to make a start on my butterflies. I'm in two minds about my secondary RSC project, watch this space.
I also managed to get the last of my coloured crochet squares joined. I have lots of thread ends to tidy and a border to add, then that is another one done.
It wasn't all about needle crafts on Saturday, I also made a loaf of bread and had a beef casserole in the slow cooker.
All in all, I had a great day.
I had hoped to have more time to play on Sunday, but alas life got in the way.
Maybe after work tomorrow I'll be able to make my purple butterflies....
I'm going shopping on Wednesday.
For a new project.
Edited to say
Floki loves his baby sister.

Sunday 2 August 2020

Meet Una.

If you were in Chookys Zoom party on Saturday, you will know that I was awaiting word of an important arrival back on the Isle of Man.
It took all day, but finally she arrived.
Baby Una.
A baby sister for now BIG brother Floki.
The two have yet to meet. Una is home, but it was pretty late, so Floki got to stay another night with his Grand dad. 
I'll post about my progress during the zoom party next time.