Sunday 27 February 2022

Stash Acquisition and Zooooom. Oh! And a pie.

You had better get comfortable, this looks like being a long one.
 So yesterday was another amazing Zoom day hosted by the lovely Chookyblue
I called it Zoooom in the title, because it was a looong session.
Thank you once again Chooky for getting us all organised and in the same place. You are wonderful and I really appreciate what you do. 
A quick picture of a bunch of us all sewing and chatting, can you see yourself in there?
Some people made great progress on one project, some worked on many. It was fun to do it together even though miles, time zones and oceans separated us, we worked together and chatted together as we each made progress. It's always good to put a face to those names that we see commenting on our blogs.
I seem to have a reputation for making good progress during these zoom sessions and this time was no different.
Of course I was working on my lovely Lucy Blue project.
I started out stitching white pieces on to the completed blues.
Until I ran out of prepared whites.  
Then I began working on the remaining few packages of prepared blues.

I had one bunch of problem fabric that did not want to play,
No matter where I put it
But eventually after some shuffling about between packages, 
it found a home in the block below.
That blue with ditzy white flowers, is so busy I had problems finding a home for it.
Now there is another problem. After all of my shuffling about trying to make it work, I have another outcast. LOL That dark blue with the electric blue leaves does not want to play nicely with what I have left. I think I'll have to cut another set of fabrics for the final round of this one.
While we were busy stitching there was some chatter about how our other halves were managing without us. Some popped in to say hello, or help with show and tell, holding up one side of a quilt. Others were there quietly in the back ground.
As you know Tony is amazing and looks after me very well during these sessions. He made me cheese on toast for lunch and decided to order a curry delivery for tea! Yummy.
Today is his day, he is off on a fishing trip with his dad and his brother. Fishing trips need food!
Which I am told, must be bacon and egg pie. Good old Tony was happy to make his own, he just wanted a little guidance from me please.
The boy did good. He has every right to look like Punch!
Once it was cooled he sliced it up and popped it into a box.
He left me a slice to have for my breakfast. It was delicious.
I think it will keep him fuelled for the day.
If you remember I mentioned stash acquisition in the title for this post. I'm wondering now if I should have left that for another blog post, but the photos are already uploaded, so I may as well just carry on.
On Friday, Debbie and I went on another wee shopping trip. The Pin Tin in Geraldine are having their pre stocktake sale, with some very huge and tempting reductions on fabric.
There isn't anything I really, really need, but Debbie had a short list, so along we went.
I found a few pieces of fabric that looked like they may have possibilities. 
A bobbin box as my current box fell and broke.
And the cutest pair of scissors.
They were not in the sale and rather expensive, I really don't need them, but they are so cute.
I also purchased the last few DMC threads I need for my next cross stitch project. I started kitting it the other day. More about that another time.
Debbie got everything on her list and was delighted that the shop lady helped her to find the perfect white on white to use as sashing fabric for her big scrap project. Rather than normal quilting fabric, she got a huge piece of extra wide backing at less than half price and, because there was a mark on the fabric, (a tiny mark very close to the selvedge that will be very easy to avoid), she got a half meter for free.
Three meters of extra wide backing for $50. Ohmigosh!
After a lovely lunch we headed back to Timaru and visited some op shops.
Debbie scored in all three.
Me in just one. The very first one.
We both came away with a handful of wee plastic baggies filled with scraps of fabric/
There was a mixture of larger and smaller scraps in each bag.
I'll need to do some pressing and sorting.
As they are still lying on my cutting table.
I also scored some larger pieces of fabric.
The Russian dollies is a half meter cut, with a small piece cut away.
The blue is only about half the width of fabric, but is over a meter.
I think we both had a very good day.
That's it from me, I'm all up to date for now.
Well done if you made it this far. LOL
I have the day to myself as Tony is away fishing.
I'm sure I will find something to do, to keep me busy until I go to work at 5pm, for an extra shift. 
Have a great weekend.

Wednesday 23 February 2022

Back to work.

My annual leave comes to an end today.  I'll be off to work this afternoon.
It's been a good week, with busy times and slow times. I've cleaned and tidied, cooked and baked, reorganised and sorted. 
I had thought I might be very busy with my sewing machine, but that didn't happen, instead I picked up my cross stitch and had some slow stitching days. So my brothers regiment badge went from this..
To this.
Not finished, but very close.
I'm pleased with my achievement and will hopefully get a chance to do a little more today before I head in to work.
I was busy in the kitchen again this morning, making a lemon and weetbix slice.
I had to try a piece, to make sure it's good enough for Tony to eat. LOL
It has a lovely flapjacky texture and flavour with an amazingly lemony icing.
It is delicious.
I also made a big bowl of coleslaw to keep us going for a day or two and tomato sauce for the freezer. 
That's it, my days chores and responsibilities are almost done. The only thing left to do is cook some lunch for Tony.
As it's too early to do that, I might go and pick up my needle. 


Monday 21 February 2022

A busy weekend.

My week off work is almost over. What do I have to show for it?
You'd think with all the lovely new fabric scraps I've acquired recently I'd have made a start at least on a new scrappy quilt top. Or put together some more crumb blocks for the latest squirrel. Alas no, I've been occupied with other things.
 I've been baking and preserving.
The hunt for a bar of chocolate led to a big turf out in the pantry on the very first day off, and from there the clean and sort continued through various parts of the house.
My collection of empty jars was sorted and some were given away as I realised I had far too many.
The shelf where I keep my recipe books was sorted and tidied, all the printed out recipes were put away into the ring binder and I managed to find a few that I had misplaced.
Even my lap top moved. I usually sit at the dining room table with it, but my Chiropractor says that is the wrong place and is causing lots of issues for me. So I've moved it, to my swing room, it's sharing the desk with my sewing machine....
So I had to sort out a shelf in the cupboard/wardrobe to keep my books and study notes on.
Of course the arrival of the latest bag of scraps stopped the big tidy up and I spent some time sorting, trimming and pressing scraps.
On Saturday Tony convinced me I should take a day off and rest. So I did.  I looked in to my room and was not inspired, (I blame the lap top, it's in the way.....). So next I wandered back in to the sitting room and my cross stitch almost jumped off my sewing cabinet and demanded attention.  According to my diary, I haven't touched it since 31st January, and you can see where I left it in the image below.
My Brother used to serve in Her Majesties British Army and this is his regimental badge.
Saturday was a good day. I didn't sit down to stitch until after lunch. I took the usual pit stops and helped Tony to make tea, then continued to stitch in to the evening.
Although it doesn't look like much I feel like I made significant progress.
Cross stitchers among you will understand the term Confetti Stitching.
There are four shades of yellow, that change every 4 to 9 stitches. It felt like I was spending more time changing threads than I was actually stitching!
 I did try counting my way over to the next patch of the shade I was using.....
After the second time I ripped it out because I had mis counted, I gave up on that idea and went back to changing threads every few stitches. I think I finally put it down at about 10.30 pm. 
I did think I might get back to my stitching yesterday. (Sunday). 
But something more exciting came along. While Tony and I were busy in the garden we received a phone call.
Would we look after Torstein while Mummy and Daddy go fishing?
We do see the whole family quite often, but this is the first time we've been asked to look after the little man. All alone, without Mum or Dad being present.
We were not sure how he would react to that.
No problem. He waved goodbye to his mum, then turned around and walked in to the house.
His toys were already out and waiting for him, so he got stuck right in.
Fabric is not the only thing I have scored at the op shop recently. 
While I was out with Debbie a couple of weeks ago I found a big bag of building blocks for $5. I snapped those up. When I got home and did some research, to buy them new would have been $45NZ
What a score!
Grandad and Torstein had fun with them.
Mummy and daddy came back  five hours later, tired and with no fish, but they were just in time to have Roast chicken with us, and some sweet corn cobs from the garden.
Of course Torstein and Grandad had ice cream too.
After all that fun and excitement I was too tired to stitch, so I had a glass of wine and an early night instead. 
Two more days before I have to return to work mode.
Today I plan to stitch.
Or maybe I will sew.
First, I think I might get dressed, as I'm still in my PJs.
I wonder if there is enough chicken left to make a pie for Grandads lunch?
I hope you had a great weekend. 


Thursday 17 February 2022

And yet more scraps.

 Yes, I've been bagging scraps again. I scored this bundle on FB.
The courier dropped it off this morning. It's quite a big package
Which contained this big bundle of scraps..
Which were not really what most of us call scraps.
Hmm, blogger, why did you turn my picture sideways??

This floral stripe is folded double over my ironing board.
And this pink is folded in four! It's a BIG piece of pink.
There are lots of new stars in my stash. LOL
They were quite big pieces, with all sorts of odd shapes cut out, so needed a good tidy up once I had pressed them.
There were some other surprises too.
George was a very lucky doggo to have such a cool bandana. LOL
And how about this handkerchief? 
Pretty good for a Leo who loves blue.
I think it might make a good centre for a medallion quilt. 
There were several of these.....
In all it took me just over two hours to sort, press and tidy everything. 
The fabrics in the above picture still need to be trimmed in to shape.
As well as the big pieces there were also some very pretty smaller pieces.
Which will make nice additions to my scrap and crumb drawers.
I have been incredibly lucky with my scrap finds recently.
I might give it a rest for a while and try to use some fabric. LOL
On the subject of using fabrics...
I mentioned last time that I was hoping to have a play with my quilt rulers.
I foolishly had it in my mind that the ruler foot off one Janome, would fit on to the other Janome.
I knew of course that the feet were not interchangeable, but broke a needle before I remembered that wee gem.
So Tony and I went shopping.
NOT paying NZ prices. Nearly $200 plus P&P.
Aus prices were a little better, but the post fee made it more expensive than buying local.
USA prices were pretty good, post was ok too, but I'll have to wait...........................
UK prices less then half of the NZ cost, post was even ok. But no one responded to our query.
USA it was then.
I'm waiting until the end of March for my new ruler foot. 
NZ retailers, if you want me to buy local, then set realistic prices.
It is cheaper to get something shipped in from the other side of the world, where do you think I'm going to shop?
So, I'll keep myself busy with something else while I await the arrival of my new ruler foot. 
My scrap drawers and crumb baskets are bursting. 

Monday 14 February 2022

Oh Crumbs, another squirrel.

 My growing collection of scrap fabrics all needs to be sorted, pressed, tidied up and put away, which has meant that my baskets of crumbs were filling up fast. So over the weekend I've sat down at my machine and started to sew.
I wonder where all this little girls friends are? 
She's not really a crumb, but as she is alone I popped her in to the basket.
I'm not sure which bundle she arrived in but I do know she was the only one.
I made sure that she has good company.
It really does not take long to make up these crumb blocks.
I started to put them together in to placemat sized blocks, thinking they would be good for practising using my rulers, but as I laid them out on the floor a squirrel planted another idea in my head. LOL
If I just turn one this way, and one that way, add a little sashing, where is my tape measure.......?
There are plenty of crumbs left, so that particular squirrel may just happen.
How was your weekend?
I'm tired, I've done three extra shifts over the weekend, this evening and tomorrow evening with be 6 and 7 shifts without a day off, I'm looking forward to Wednesday.
Right now I'm off to prepare a very special Valentines lunch for Tony, to make up for the fact that I'm working this evening. 
Happy Valentines day. 

Thursday 10 February 2022

Retail Therapy and another bag of scraps.

Debbie and I enjoyed our day out on Tuesday. We both had a very short shopping list, she wanted yarn for a baby knit and I needed a new blade for my big roller.  We drove to Geraldine, just 15 minutes away and visited the Pin Tin. Where we both found what we needed and I also found this pretty batik fat quarter sitting alone on the sale table.
There were lots of other fabrics there too, but it was the only batik, so I had to buy it and bring it home and store it with more of it's kind. LOL
After a very lovely lunch, we came back in to Timaru and decided to have a look at our local Op shop.
This spotty piece of fabric has been there for a couple of weeks now, I have managed to leave it behind three times, but on Tuesday it finally jumped off the hanger and came home with me.
I'm not sure how big it is, I didn't measure yet, but I'm reasonably sure it is a wide backing fabric.
I also found some bags of doilies and grabbed a couple.
I sorted through them and kept the ones I think I may use.
The others went back in to one of the bags and will be returned to the store, some one else may have a use for them. Don't hold your breath on this project, the main fabric collection has been sitting for....10 years? They came to me in a bag of curtain samples. LOL
Next I found a pile of Euro cushion covers.  These are not shop bought covers, but beautifully made and finished by a clever person.
Very nice too, I have no use for Euro cushion covers, so I'll turn them back in to yardage and stash them away until I use them for something.
While we were in the store, there were some children playing at the toy shelf and they had left something turned on. The noise was pretty annoying, so once they had left I went over to see if I could find it and turn it off. Easy peasy, it was the little train with all the flashing lights.
Look what was sat right beside the little train.
Some people collect old singers or Elnas. I have a small collection of the toys.
Even the modern ones.
They only wanted five dollars for it. My whole bill was only $22.
Once I got home and had a closer look at her I realised that there is nowhere for thread.
A quick look about on the internet and I came upon this video about these machines.
Turns out it works a bit like felting and only really works with felt like fabrics.
That's ok. I didn't really want to sew with it any way. She can sit pretty on the shelf and one day maybe I'll want to try sewing some felt together. 
Yes I checked, she works. There were batteries inside and when I moved the switch to on and pressed the big blue button, a light came on and she whirred away. I removed the batteries before I sat her up there on the shelf. 
I have been given another bag of scraps!
One of my colleagues who is a dress maker asked if I would like her off cuts, I said yes please, just to be polite. Oh my goodness look at what she gave me. There was easily half of one of those paper supermarket bags, full of lovely scraps. Some pieces are tiny and some are quite large. The majority of them are definitely useful in a scrap quilt.
And hiding amid all of her off cuts, were what I estimate to be about two charm packs worth of squares.
They look like French General to me.
My colleague said she had made a cot quilt for a grand daughter and had used some of the lighter pieces for that. 
I really do need to make a start on another scrap quilt. 


Tuesday 8 February 2022

The Jelly Roll Race is Run.

Last time you were here I'd completed the quilting and gotten the binding on to my Jelly Roll Race quilt. I had left the trimming until after the binding was added, because I was in a hurry. 
So on Sunday I took myself in to my room to trim off the edges ready to close the binding.
Belle was there before me. I've never seen her squished up on there before.
While I was trimming, she came over on to the cutting table to supervise, which made me nervous, what if she hopped in to the way of my blade?
But she seemed content to stay where she was.
Supervising, but not too closely.
Maybe she was inspecting my lovely wavy quilting again.
It took two sessions to get the binding closed. I started on Sunday before going to work, then completed it on Monday.
As Monday was a public holiday here in NZ, Tony was home and offered to model the finished quilt for me.
I think the stripes should go horizontally, but Tony wanted to try vertical.
Nope! I don't like it that way. 
Here it is temporarily pegged on to the quilt rail in my hallway.
I'm really pleased with the way this one turned out and I'm happy to have it hang out for a while. 
I'm off out with debs today, we're going to do a little retail therapy, have some lunch and then may be have a sit n stitch if there is time left.
I'd better go find something portable for the sit n stitch.