Thursday 30 December 2021

The one that was delayed in the mail.

Santa surprised me this year.
He was a bit put out that this gift was the one that got held up in the COVID/Christmas delays. But it is here now and WOW! Santa did good.
As you know I have a Grace frame for quilting. I have not done a huge amount with it, I've pretty much mastered the meander and had a go at some custom quilting. I would love to have a go at some ruler work, so Santa bought me rulers, but they are thin rulers, for domestic machines. That's ok, he did not realise. Then yesterday, very early in the morning we heard a delivery van pull up outside our door, and this was delivered. Oh boy!
The starter set, for the Grace Company's Pattern Perfect system. 
It has eight quite basic designs, a great place to start .
It took very little time to get it set up on my frame. The templates have four patterns on each side and are very easily adjusted or turned over.
The stylus is also adjustable and slots into the grooves, just like the templates we used to have at school for practicing letters and patterns.
There are other pattern templates, a little more like pantographs and Santa knows that I would love some of those too, but he rightly thought that the starter set would do for now.
Of course it all came in a very sturdy box that was inspected
and repurposed very quickly.
I think she likes it.
I have a few quilt tops awaiting quilting, I'd better go find one and get it loaded up so that I can play.


Tuesday 28 December 2021

Christmas roundup.

Phew! Where to start. It's been a very busy few days.
Tony came home early from work on Christmas eve. He bought flowers on the way.
Unable to decide which ones to get, he had purchase two bunches.
Our neighbour had also given me flowers. They are away for a few days and we are charged with looking after their garden and collecting any mail. She had cut these lilies and gifted them to me as nobody would be home to enjoy them. 
On Christmas day My boy Joe and his family came to visit. There were lots of gifts and lots of fun.
I think young Torstein likes his eye spy quilt.
I backed it with a piece of fleece, so it is very soft and cuddly.
You can see just a tiny bit of Sea swept there beside Torstein and his quilt. I gifted Sea Swept to his mum Lee. She didn't want her photo taken, but this is what she said about it on her Facebook..
"They say in life the best gifts aren't what you get from the store but rather a gift that is made with their time, love and energy. A huge thank you to my amazing mother in law Lou Heron for making me this gorgeous quilt it means the world to me more than you will ever know and makes me feel so loved 🥰"
One more picture of Torstein.
I think all the excitement had made him hungry. He ate a very good lunch.
All too soon it was time for me to head off to work.
It was a lovely day, I very much enjoyed spending it with family.
Santa was a little put out as his big gift to me has not yet arrived. I have no idea what it is, but I'm told that it has cleared customs and is enroute to Timaru. 
But I still had things to unwrap on the big day.
A whole set of quilting rulers. 
These will keep me busy once I learn how to use them. 
He also  bought me this lovely book. 
They really are tiny, each embroidered  hexie  is only one inch.
My brother hit the nail on the head too, with another book.
There is some good reading and a few interesting projects in this one too.
On Boxing Day, we partied with Deb and her family. 
The 27th was a big day, at very short notice Chooky had one of her zoom sew alongs. I didn't have time to do much prep work, so only had a few Lucy blocks ready to sew.
As usual, there were ladies from all over the world joining us throughout the day.
It was good to see regular faces, who are fast becoming friends.
There were also some new faces too. 
And at least one person has been bullied talked in to starting a Lucy Boston quilt. 
You will enjoy it Chris, honest.
Once I had sewn together all the blocks I had prepared, I set about preparing some more. 
A quick count revealed that I only need eight more blocks.
Time to sort out the back ground fabrics and the squares.
Later in the evening I was joined by my friend.
She was fussing and taking too long to get settled, I had to show the girls what was going on.
It was a lovely relaxing day, just what I needed. Thank you Chooky for getting us all organised once again. I'm very much looking forward to our first Zoom of 2022.
See you Sunday. 😀
Today, the party is at our place. It's becoming a tradition for us to host a Twixmas party.
I do hope the weather improves. It rained all day yesterday, great for a zoomy sewing day, but not so great for our party today. 
I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and wish everyone all the very best for the coming year.

Wednesday 22 December 2021

Op Shop Blocks.

But first a finish.
Over the last couple of days I have found time to cut and add borders to my Edyta's Garden quilt top.
No backing or binding has been sorted yet, something else was calling out to me and I wanted to get to it.
Recently I've been very lucky to have some pretty good fabric finds at my local op shop.
As many of you know, I'm on the hunt for an orange coffee mug, with white spots, but also check out the craft section, while I'm there. Over the last couple of months I've found some good fabric bundles.
Many of which have included one or more of these blocks.
I ended up with eight blocks and a partial block that looked like it had been hastily hacked!. The fabric is not especially good, maybe from the blue shop with the red spot, or a similar outlet, but that's ok, I can work with them.
And today was their day. I set about giving some of them a little tidy up.
And to make up for the partial block? I had three of the darker fabrics, three of the pale fabrics and and off cut of the pale fabric just big enough to cut a forth piece. My stash yielded a neutral that worked well, so two squares of that were added.
Another recent find, the cute spotty fabric I mentioned in my last blog post, makes great sashing fabric for these blocks. So when Tony got home for lunch, this was where we were at.
After lunch, the hunt was on for some corner stones. I found just the right shade of blue in my stash and used a little up.
And in no time at all I had my second quilt top of the day finished and pegged up for a photo shoot.
I'm rather pleased with this very quick finish. It will make a great donation quilt after I've layered and finished it. I think I had better wash it too. It smells rather funky!
So I need to make some frankenbats from some of the many off cuts I have stashed away in my big tub.
But it's just too hot for playing with batting today, so I'll save that task for another day.
I still didn't start my December ornament, the one for my tree.
Maybe I'll do that this afternoon. 
Merry Christmas everyone.
I hope you all have a fantastic day. 

Saturday 18 December 2021

Can't sleep.

What do you do when you're awake in the night and can't get back to sleep?
I figured I may as well write a quick blog post.
After lunch on Thursday, Debbie and I just had time to have a look through a couple of op shops, before I had to head home and change for work. I scored again. I found another cute wee floral and a pretty spotty fabric.
Plus two brand new cotton pillow cases which will make great backing fabrics. 
Yesterday was a day off work. My studies for the week were complete, so I could play.
Was it last week, or the week before that I showed you the I spy fabrics all sewn up into four patch units?
Yesterday I got on and sewed them all together.
With a blue grey fabric for sashing.
And a spacy robot fabric for corner stones.
There are tractors and diggers, boats and cars, all manner of things for a boy to discover. 
I got them all sewn in to rows, before Tony came home for lunch.
Then when he returned to work I pulled everything together in to a top.
I not sure about how to finish this one. Maybe layered and quilted, or maybe I'll just find and add a fleece backing. Ill let you know.
I have a bundle of girls I spy fabrics that I plan to use in the same way. Maybe they will get the chop later today.
Right now I'm going back to bed because it is 4 am and I should be asleep.
I hope you are all sleeping better than I am.

Thursday 16 December 2021

It's looking Christmassy.

So last weekend, Tony had to go away again, for work. But before he left, he helped me to decorate our trees. If this is your first Christmas with me, yes, you read that right. Trees. Plural.
There are only three of them this year.
My beautiful white tree in my hall, decorated with blue and silver.
Some ornaments were hand made by me.
And some by other people.
Some are holiday mementoes. This pretty bell is hand painted and purchased in Prague when we visited in 2013.
Others were lucky finds at the local op shop.
Next to go up was the big tree in the sitting room.
There are glass angels, bells and of course a taste of home hanging on this one.
And another hand painted bell from Prague. Along side a hand made angel purchased on a visit to Gozo/Malta.
and right at the top, in pride of place a cute wee fairy made by a friend of my Mum.
She has sat atop our family tree for over 40 years.
Finally my favourite tree is in the dining room. The ornaments on this one are all hand made. Some by me, some by you.
If you look closely you can see evidence of SSCS exchanges. 
Of course my windswept Santas.
One from Janice and one from Maria.
There are many more handmade ornaments spread over all three trees, too many to mention, but all cherished and loved.
I have mailed out most of the ornaments I made throughout the year. But didn't start making my own yet! LOL Maybe this weekend.
I've been busy making ornaments of a different kind at work.
Some of the residents enjoy a little crafting, so Hayze (My colleague) and I encouraged them to make ornaments.
We made stars and trees from wooden lolly sticks.
Painting and gluing and sticking.
There are still some snow flakes to come and I'll try to remember to get a photo of our wee tree. 
I have been a very lucky girl and received two Christmas packages already. 
In the first was not one, but three new ornaments for the tree in my dining room.
My pal Clowie has an embroidery machine and used it to make her swaps this year.
An Angel.
A bell.
And a pretty little tree.
The other package I received had a card from Maria and a cute wee book mark.
Thank you Maria.
And finally, a package I received a little while ago. 
A paper pack for more EPP.
If you think this looks a little like Chookys Blue lanterns, you're right. I'll be chasing that particular squirrel as soon as I finish with Jenny's hexies.
Speaking of Jenny's Hexies, here they are. I started to join the 4 hex units together.
I'm thinking I might make it a little wider.
I have more 4 hexes made, but have been busy with my studies. My assessor has asked me to take a break over Christmas. So maybe I'll get a few things done.
Well, that's my news, I'm off to get on with my day.
Lunch with Debbie to swap ornaments, then off to work at 3pm.
But first, some fun I think.