Welcome to tales of my stitching life, home, family and friends.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

Binding Time

It’s always great to get up to the binding stage in the quilt making business.  I didn’t have quite enough blue go right around the rugby panel quilt, so used some of the grey/black fabric across the bottom.  It doesn’t look too bad, I hope.  Sitting at the dining table was very pleasant as I hand stitched the binding down.  Then I had lots of ends from quilting around the rugby figures to finish off.  I do like to sit outside if I can, but although it has been sunny, the breeze has been a little chilly these last couple of days.

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Hand stitching the binding

Finally this job was finished and it was photo time.  I’ll be donating this to Foster Hope charity and hopefully a youngster will love it on his bed.

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Most of this quilt was made from stash fabrics.  Although I did purchase the panel, at only $5 it was a bargain.  And the black and white spotty fabric I used on the back was part of a bundle donated recently to our Sew Wot group, so I gladly took it home and used that.

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Saturday, October 17, 2020

More Yellow Stitching

My Rainbow Scrap Challenge sewing isn’t over for the month, there was still some more yellow stitching to finish.  How about this little cutie?  I made another spool block with selvedge edges.  When finished this little wall hanging will be going in my sewing room/spare bedroom.

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Yellow spool block

Then it was time to stitch up some checkerboard blocks.  I made four in yellow and two in burgundy.  Why the extra colour, you may be wondering?  When I had a count up of the blocks, I needed two more to give me the number of blocks I needed, so burgundy it was.  These are nice simple blocks to make, and so effective, I think, and will make a great quilt for a teenage boy.

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Checkerboard blocks

And lastly, I made some simple little flag blocks, in yellow and burgundy again, using up the extra bits of fabric left over.  This project will be carried over to next year, as I only started making these blocks a while ago.

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Flag blocks

Once again, I’ve put off making the more intricate paper pieced Colourpoint Cat block till the last.  It really should have been stitched first, and got it out of the way.  Hopefully I’ll be able to do it before the end of the month.

Thursday, October 15, 2020

Still Working on Number Three

I decided not to “roll the dice” this week and work on project three again.  After all, I’m not too far from the finish line that I couldn't bear to put it away, and wait for the number to come up again.  Just as well I'm in charge and can change the rules a little, don't you think.  I have been working on quilting around the rugby players on the blocks.  Slow going for me, as I don’t know how to do it free motion very well so I’m going slowly with my walking foot.  How much I’m in awe of quilters who are so skilled with FMQ that they have their quilts finished in no time at all!

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Quilting around the figures

I’ve done most of the bigger blocks now and have the smaller ones at the top and bottom of the panel to do, plus finish off the borders.  When I went back to the sewing room for another session this is what I found.  Gemma all nice and cozy on top of those rugby players – I think she likes the All Blacks best.


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She knows she has to move

So Gemma lost her soft snoozing place and I got on with more machine quilting.  Almost there, and with any luck I can finish off the binding on Slow Sunday Stitching.  That’s the plan, let’s see how it goes.

Wednesday, October 14, 2020

Sew Wot Tuesday

As I had to miss the previous Sew Wot morning, it was great to catch up with everyone again.  And especially nice to welcome back Jenny N who has been convalescing for a while.  Carol was our hostess today.  And she had certainly been keeping herself busy, knitting a quartet of little dollies, with another one in the works.  All dressed beautifully of course, with lots of accessories, one even had tiny rollers in her hair!

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Carol’s knitted dollies

Helen had been busy stitching gifts, I loved this tote bag she had made for her SIL.  Such pretty fabric with the pops of coral.  And that wasn’t all, she had also stitched up two aprons and hand towel sets for birthday gifts.

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Helen has been sewing gifts

I had some show and tell too.  First was two pair of cozy wool socks – I may have to put these away till next winter now things are warming up here.  I’m feeling very pleased with myself now that I finally seem to have mastered the heels and toes.  This pattern is knitted on two needles so has a seam up one side.

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Two pair of pink socks

I had also finished two little baby beanies and two draw string bags, to be donated to Foster Hope charity.

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Then I had to check out what the others were working on.  Jenny N was making a lovely shawl out of such a pretty shade of blue wool.  Heather had her tiny dolls and was adding their clothes.  She confessed that this is indeed a very old UFO, in fact it was started for her daughter Mandy many years ago.  Perhaps she will now keep it for herself, she thinks.

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From Jenny and Heather

Mary’s “Lucy Boston” piece is coming along well – there is certainly a lot of work in this project.  She was busy appliqueing the hexies onto a background fabric, and this will be completed as a table cloth.

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Mary’s pretty hexies

Carol certainly looked the part when she took our tea and coffee orders.  And what a marvelous spread she produced for us, much appreciated.

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Morning Tea time

I always enjoy meeting up with this friendly group each fortnight, and seeing what they have been making.  We are all different,  some love intricate handwork, others do machining, and most of us do knitting from time to time.  

Sunday, October 11, 2020

A Weekend Away, and a Surprise Meeting

We have had a weekend away with the caravan club,  up at Himatangi so not too far to drive.  Just a short weekend trip, two nights away, so it seemed that we arrived back home before we knew it.  It is Spring here now, which can mean cool times along with the warm, and the season often brings blustery windy weather.

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Staying at Himatangi Beach

Our club members enjoyed a scrummy morning tea on Saturday when we drove through to Sanson for a visit to Viv’s Kitchen “Food the way it used to be”.    We’ve been here before, but it’s a place well worth returning to.

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Viv’s Kitchen

This café specialises in Cream Horns, and they churn out thousands each week.  But this visit Robin and I decided on a yummy Chocolate Éclair each, and enjoyed every mouthful.  The busy staff look great dressed in their “I Love Creams Horns” aprons.

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Smiling for the camera

Back at camp Robin went to visit the owners of a Leisureline caravan, the same brand as ours, to see if they were aware of the Leisureline Owners Club, and would like to join.   What a surprise he got on handing over our business card when the young couple announced they recognised the name of our caravan, Romany Rambler.  And then, Mandy announced that her Mum Heather is a member of my Sew Wots quilting group – what a small world!  I popped over to see her a little later, such a lovely young woman, and we had a nice chat.  Of course I had to take a photo of the quilt on the bed,stitched by Heather.

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Many and her caravan quilt

Later in the evening our group went out for a meal together at the local Cossie Club.  As it was still light when we had been fed and watered, we ventured down to the beach.  What a lovely evening it was,  the sun was getting lower in the sky, and people were down at the beach making the most of the evening.

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A lovely evening at Himatangi Beach

In between socialising all the hand work I did while we were away was a little knitting.  Worked on a baby beanie, and then on this little blue child’s jumper.  A few rows here and there all adds up.

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Knitting in the caravan

It was a nice relaxing weekend away, we got to sit outside in the sunshine for Happy Hour, caught up with everyone, and enjoyed their company. 

Tuesday, October 6, 2020

Number Three Again

I rolled the dice on Monday morning, and it brought up number three again, the Rugby panel, the same as last week.  Not that I really mind, just that I was not expecting it so soon.  During the weekend I had stitched the backing, and layered and pinned it all together, so I was raring to go. After struggling down on the carpet getting a few pins in to secure it, I then picked it all up and finished the job on the glass topped picnic table outside.  So pleasant outside in the warm Spring weather, and much better for my back and knees!

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Pinning the quilt

In fact, I was on a roll sitting outside under the archgola, that I pinned up a second quilt too.  You haven't seen this one yet, it was stitched together leader and ender style, another donation quilt.  As quilters know, it feels good to use up some more of that never ending fabric, especially for a good cause.

At the moment I’m quilting with my walking foot around all those straight lines.  One step at a time.  I’ll have to see how far I get on this project this week.  No weekend sewing for me, we will be away in the caravan once again!

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Starting the quilting

I’m feeling quite virtuous, have spent a little time in the kitchen preparing meals.  Made a cottage pie for dinner tonight, and a fish pie to take away for the weekend - that’s popped in the freezer for later.  And we have done our democratic duty yesterday and voted early.  Our Members of Parliament and the hopefuls are in full campaign mode – out in the regions hustling for votes.  After a Covid rocky start and a change of date, the  General Election is not too far away now.  There was plenty of hand sanitiser on tables, and plenty of room available so we were well spaced out.  It was a good idea I thought to be offered a pen each  to keep, so that we could mark our choices on the ballot papers using a pen untouched by others.  All necessary precautions these days.

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Early voting locally

Gemma is not at all interested in these goings on, she hasn't even joined me in the sewing room today.  No, she’s too busy tucked us safe and snuggly in the hidey hole in her tower, probably dreaming pussy cat dreams while she waits for her dinner to be served.  What a life!

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She’s in here somewhere

Saturday, October 3, 2020

Yellow for Spring

It’s Spring down here in New Zealand, my part of paradise.  So yellow seems a very Spring like colour to be stitching.  So what have I been doing?  More butterflies, a trio of yellow lovelies.  The two brighter yellow scraps certainly brought back memories, I had used them on family quilts quite some time ago, one for my son, and one for my grand-daughter.

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Three yellow butterflies

It was time for all the butterflies to get together for a “meet and mingle”.  I’ve made thirty, so I’m going to call it quits.  This should be enough for a girls quilt with sashing and borders, I think.  I’ll be mixing the colours up more when I come to assemble them.

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Thirty pretty butterflies.

It’s been fun choosing the fabrics each month for this RSC project.  “I’ve done my yellow butterflies”, I told Robin, but his response was to look at me blankly.  “You know, for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge”, I added.  Don't think he really cared that much, although he does know all about leader and ender sewing, he tells me.

There is a splash of yellow in our back garden, with our Kowhai tree covered in big fat yellow blossoms.  Sometimes the native tui birds come calling, as they love the nectar.  This lovely tree was a self sown seedling and traveled from our former garden in Upper Hutt when we moved here to Levin seven years ago.  It has grown big and strong and we love this native tree.

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Kowhai tree in flower

Spring is also time for the clocks to be altered for Daylight Saving Time.  I love Daylight Saving and the longer evenings, when Summer arrives we will have those extra mild summer evenings  to enjoy outside.