Saturday, January 25, 2014

Bag making

I've been able to tick off the first item on my FAL list!  I made this bag using a tried and true pattern from my favourite bag book, 'Bags the Modern Classics' by Sue Kim.  It's a Stash Books book and although I've had it a couple of years I recently saw it for sale in Spotlight.  I've made this pattern a few times and it is a fabulous large tote.

The pattern is the Metro Shopping Bag.  It's a very roomy unstructured bag, and makes a shopping tote.  This one is for my niece Evie, she loves moustache themed items and should make a great beach bag.

 The purple chevron lining is a nice contrast to the grey drill main fabric.  I bought both of these at Spotlight, sadly my local store is out of these self patterned chevrons and the self patterned dots that were part of the same range.  I don't usually put pockets in bags but I thought a pocket for a phone and wallet would be handy for a teenager. 


An outside photo which is probably more true to the colour of the drill.

I also made my friend Pam a bag for her birthday.  I love the Wonky Chinese Coin pattern, and made a quilt quite some time ago here.  However I found it a pain to make, so many little bits of fabric all over the place and a fair bit of wastage.  I saw a lovely tote in the British magazine Love Patchwork & Quilting which used it as the front of the bag and I couldn't resist making one.


I was really happy with the finished bag.  I found the 'Handmade With Love' tin at one of our local coffee shops, Chickpea to include in it.  The background is a linen/cotton, and the lining is an Anna Maria Horner print from her line Field Study.

I made the collage above in PicMonkey.  I thought it would be hard but am so pleased it was quick and easy.

I've give both bags to their owners and they both like them.  I hope they get lots of use!  

Thursday, January 23, 2014

The Great Aussie Destash!

I'm participating in The Great Aussie Destash on Instagram, you can find me at here.  It was actually yesterday but there are still some great bargains to be had, check the hashtag #greataussiedestash to see what is on offer.

I love this Dream On fabric but let's face it I've had it for a couple of years and can't seem to find 'the perfect project'.  I've kept a couple of charm packs but decided to sell my half yard cuts. 

They are gorgeous.  Can you tell I'm in two minds about selling them?

Friday, January 17, 2014

Finish Along List

I've decided to join in with Katy at the Littlest Thistle and the Finish Along for the first quarter of 2014.  It's a great idea, we all list which projects we hope to complete before the end of March and then we report back at the end of this time.

Here's my list of projects that I hope to complete:


Beach Bag for Evie - shouldn't take too long and I want her to be able to use it during Summer.


Tunic Top for me, I haven't made any clothes for myself for years but have been tempted by some patterns recommended by my good friend Pam.  I got the lovely voile with the feathers on it from Spotlight on the bargain table so I'm going to try this one first.

Lisette Summer Dress for Indy.  The fabric is one of the new DS fabrics for Spotlight, they are way too loose weave for patchwork but I thought this print would make a sweet dress for my girl.  The pattern is one I've made before so hopefully it won't take too long.  I want it to be ready for her when she returns from the UK at the end of February.  


Open Your Windows quilt.  I need to buy another piece of the background fabric for this, I've finished all the blocks and laid them out so the they are ready to sew together.  Ambitious to put finishing it on the list but I'm ready for a challenge!

Vintage Tribute Star, I want to quilt and bind this and get it finished.

Boys Charity Quilt.  My quilting group make a couple of quilts every year to donate to The Royal Children's hospital to give to sick children who need a bit of comfort.  I need to quilt this one.  Not a great picture, it's made with Batman fabrics.


Schnibbles Spot wall quilt.  The top is done, the backing is made, I need to quilt and bind this cute quilt.  Still not sure how to quilt it.


Bag for myself.  I bought this gorgeous piece of cotton/linen from A Little Different in Geelong and I want to make a back similar to the large bag pictured on the pattern, but with some alterations.  It's the closest pattern I had to give an idea of what I want to make, but I want to add external pockets and leather handles.  Need to 'shop my stash' for more fabric for it but the actual making of the bag shouldn't be difficult.


Scrappy Tripalong.  Nearly finished, I have quilted it since this picture was taken so I need to bind it, and the binding is already made and ready to go.  Considering the temperature has been between 41 and 45 degrees celsius every day for the past 5 days I haven't felt like handsewing the binding on! I used a wool wadding too so it's thick and heavy

So that's my list!  Linking up at Katy's, it's fun to look at some of the blogs who have linked up, I thought my list was ambitious but some other quilters have very big plans.  I may have to make a bigger list next time, although I might just see how I go with my list.

Finish Along 2014

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Summer Time

This quilt is one I put together at Sewjourn last September.  It's made with a linen/cotton background, and a selection from my stash.  I even used some of my precious Architextures fabric.  It's a free pattern from the Art Gallery Fabrics website called Street Grid.  I've arranged my blocks a little differently to their pattern as I made my quilt smaller.  They have a number of really lovely free patterns and are worth having a look at here.

I try to do a little bit of sewing every evening, and with so little on TV to distract me I've been able to get a few things done over summer. Quilting this little lap quilt is one of them.

I've used a ribbon meander, it's quilted quite lightly as I used a very thin wadding which I bought at the now closed Ballarat Patchwork many years ago.  I didn't get a photo of the back, it's a Spotlight Voile.  The quilt is so light and feels like butter.  I'm very pleased with the quilting.  Now I have to choose a binding though, usually I have a good idea of what I'd like to use to frame my quilts but with this one I am stumped.

It was fun to have a different venue to take some photos.  These were taken at my sister's house, her husband collects musical instruments of all kinds and they look great with the quilts.  I have another two that are pinned and ready to quilt so I'm hoping to get them moved onto the 'finished' list soon.  It's so hard to not get distracted by new ideas and quiltalongs.  I'm hoping to join the popular Economy Block Quilt Along soon, the pictures I've seen in the Flickr group and on Instagram (#economyblockalong) are so enticing.  It's easy to find lovely new ideas!

Monday, January 6, 2014

Sandi Frames

This quilt has been in the works for at least 2 years, I think maybe three!  I made most of the centre blocks at Sewjourn, a sewing retreat with quilty friends.  I think I may have had a bourbon or two before I sewed some of them up as a few are a bit wonky.  I used some of my carefully hoarded Sandi Henderson fabrics, with some shot cottons and a white background which I think I got at Spotlight.  I ran out of the lovely Farmer's Market Paisley print, needing only about a 10" square to finish the blocks. 

So the search began!  On and off I searched for that out of print fabric.  I had got to the stage where I thought I would just cut my losses, unpick and replace it with something else when someone in my facebook destash group noticed my year old 'searching for' post and contacted me.  She had 3 metres of it!  I really wanted to buy it all, but I settled for a half metre. 

I love this quilt top.  I wasn't sure about such a huge expanse of white but it really works well.  I adore the Sandi Henderson fabrics too.  They are mostly Meadowsweet I and a little Farmer's Market.

I may of course change my opinion when it comes time to quilt it!  Any ideas for a simple quilting pattern would be considered.  I think I'd like something loopy rather than straight lines, as some curves would compliment the trellis design.

It is such a windy day here I had to take the photos on my front verandah pretty quickly, so that it didn't blow away.  If I wait for good days to take photos I just won't blog much though!  I am trying to let go a bit so that I blog more.

I bought two of these lovely storage boxes from a clearing sale a few weeks ago.  Aren't they gorgeous? 

I have a confession though - this is the third quilt I've made using my Sandi Henderson stash and shot cottons!  I've also just realised that I've never blogged the other two - admittedly one is only a quilt top.  I will work on changing that very soon.

The pattern for this quilt is 'Frame Up' by Jessica Levitt in her book 'Modern Mix'.  It's a gorgeous book of quilts, pillows and other items.  I love Stash books, they make building a library of quilting titles reasonably inexpensive.  Spotlight have starting selling a few too, so they are easily available.  I've got quite a few now and love flicking through them.  Im sure if I spent some of my browsing time quilting I'd have a few more finished quilts.

Friday, January 3, 2014


I've been busy at the sewing machine and need to take some photos to share.  It's that time of year when I like to reflect over achievements and take stock of the WIP pile.  This past year I managed to finish quite a few quilt tops and I am becoming more confident with quilting, although I still have quite a pile of tops to quilt!

Rather than do a wrap up post for 2013, I'm going to update the lists in my side bar.  After I've picked myself up off the floor from the shock of just how many WIPs I no doubt still have to finish, I am going to also make a list of projects I hope to achieve this year.  I'm very excited about starting a couple of quilts that I have been thinking about.  One of them is this lovely 'Open Your Windows' by the clever Brigitte at Farbstoff.  I know I should be finishing a few things off but I just have that urge, you know, the start something new urge!

I've got a couple of tops pinned at the moment, one is this lovely Tribute Star.  The photo was taken inside and doesn't do the fabrics justice I'm afraid.  The background is a beautiful hankerchief linen in a soft neutral brown. 


This is the first Tribute Star that I've made, the second I blogged about here.  I'm so happy to report that my daughter's boyfriend's mother has received the other one, and likes it.  My daughter even told me she has it draped on their lounge.  It's always a relief to hear that a gifted quilt is being used.

I love this pattern so much, I don't think I've finished with it yet!

I've also been playing with these delicious blocks.  Called Chiral Music, the pattern is a free one designed by Cindy at Live a Colorful Life (I always have to go back and take the 'u' out of the word 'color' when quoting Americans!).  It is part of an online quilting bee, but I just really liked this block.  It's so different to most of what is popular at the moment, and I've found it a great block to practice using a good quarter inch seam and matching my points.


The very last block has the centre section reversed.  I'm still thinking about whether I'll unpick and change it or leave it as an 'on purpose' mistake!  I've cut out quite a few more blocks which I'm slowly working through.  I'm using all DS for Spotlight/Joann's fabrics, and I'd like to sash it but I'm unsure what to use. 

A couple of the blocks in more detail.  It is a gorgeous and unusual block, I'm enjoying making them very much.

Of course it's always nice to get some help when taking photos.