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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Mum made this ...

She started it in 1978 (it was her first quilt too!)
and she thought it would take her forever ...
but I conveniently came down with glandular fever at the start of 1979, and
spent 3 weeks in hospital - so she got half the hexagons done while she was
in there visiting me!
I think she finished it later in that same year - I guess that once she had half of it done so fast, it was an incentive to keep working on it and finish it as soon as possible ;-)
It was made from all sorts of dressmaking/etc scraps she scrounged from
anyone and anywhere - so there was 70s fabric and 60s fabric and who knows
what else ... it isn't actually quilted - the magazine article she got the
idea from didn't mention that - so she just put a calico backing on it.

and the best part? - she made it for ME
(and yes - of course I still have it!)

Some of my first quilts and some stuff I crocheted at about the same time.

I was actually looking for a photo of a quilt that my Mum made ... but I fell across a whole heap of other photos that I thought I should put on my blog too.

These are couple of A4 sized quilts I did for a challenge back in the year 2000:

The theme for these 2 was "Keep it simple" - so how much more simple can u get than "Eternity"? lol

... the other one, "Continuum", was meant to be the simplest way I could "draw" a representation of life, the universe and everything ...

2000 was the year that the MQ yahoogroup was started - so that a group of us on the Scquilters yahoogroup could use it to do a mystery quilt that one of the members had designed for us - a few weeks before the sewing day the person running it posted (to the yahoogroup) a list of how many fabrics and instructions about what ones had to be light/dark/medium/bright/etc and what had to contrast, or not, with what (and yes, I chose bright pink for the "medium" and a medium green for the "bright" - but it worked out well so I am glad I did it that way) ... and shortly after that - a week or so before the sewing day - she posted some cutting instructions - so we could cut the fabrics into the bits we needed to start with (so that we were ready to start sewing on the day, and so the sewing/etc would fit in one day). Then on the sewing day we got sent some instructions about every hour or so until we were supposedly finished ... of course some of us got a bit (lot? lol) behind ... I actually joined in at the last minute, signed up for the yahoogroup the instructions came on at about 11pm on the night before the sewing day (while chatting on ICQ - some of those I was chatting with were doing it too), I went out for most of the day and then started cutting out my fabric when the fast sewers were putting their blocks together! But I decided it was about time I finished a "proper" quilt, rather than A4 sized things and one other big quilt that was badly quilted in a hurry with very thick batting (it is nice and warm though ;-)

One "quilt inspector" had to make sure I was quilting it snuggly enough:

... and the other "quilt inspector" had to make sure I sewed on the binding so it was nice and sittable:

... if you look closely (click to see a larger image ;-) at the bottom of the picture you can see my needle and thread next to the cat's backside - I had the camera next to me while I was sitting and sewing so when she sat on me I picked up the camera and took the photo ...

I also did this bit of freeform crochet around the same time as the quilt (give or take a month or 3)

it was originally meant to be a necklace but I use it as a hair thingy ;-)

and, because I do both quilty stuff and crochet, I just had to put some crochet on my quilt!

so it has a little crochet flower smack bang in the middle ;-)

and yes - I even put it in the Canberra Quilters Exhibition (cat hair included ;-)

... so here is the standard "brag photo" of me and my quilt:

this is the back - showing my attempts at stipple quilting ...

That quilt was "MQ1" ... and we did it fairly early in the year. Later in that year, during the Olympics actually, we did "MQ2" (over the next 2 or 3 years we also did MQ3,4,5,6,7,8,9 and 10 ... I joined in for all of them, but only a few of them are actually finished - the rest are UFOs waiting to be quilted, or still waiting for me to finish sewing the blocks/etc together)

I did my sewing on the day for MQ2 ... but this is one of those I never did get around to finishing - so mine is still a UFO ... all it is so far is a top, and a few ideas:

and no - you are not seeing things - I DID choose gold lame for one of my fabrics!!! ... I wasn't sure if I was being brave or stupid, and I got laughed at when I told everyone what I was using, but I love how it turned out!

Actually it was funny when I draped it across a space in my sewing room one day - was trying to spread it out a bit while I pondered what i might do in the way of quilting ... and the middle was hanging down between whatever I had draped it over and the gold lame looked like it was lying in a pool in the bottom ... kind of like Odo (the shape shifter from Star Trek Deep Space 9) was lying in my quilt! ... so that kind of led to my quilt having the creative? title of "Changeling: from the Ole ympics to the stars" ... the "ole" bit is because they had the opening ceremony for the soccer here in Canberra and my son and I were part of it - he was one of a few hundred kids who were dancing to that "ole ole ole" song and I was one of a small group of parents who dragged out a couple of big banners that were unfurled during the dance. (the changeling bit is because of the Odo thing and because it kind of changed as it was made, and I changed the fabrics from normal to weird ;-) ... the olympics bit is because that is when it was made, and the stars bit is because the kids dancing were stars for the night, the athletes were stars and the quilt looks like a star, one of the fabrics has stars on, and I think I might put star shaped sequins (or maybe glittery beads to look like stars) on the quilt and/or quilt stars on at least some of it ... my quilt names can mean all sorts of odd things!)

I just found a photo of a crochet log cabin rug I made early in the same year ... actually I must have made it in 1999 ... because the filename says I took the photo on 1st January 2000:

It is an "Auntie Andrea" thing - I made it for one of my brother's kids ;-)

... I also made 2 more later - because he and his wife had 2 more kids ... lol

This is one of them - made late in 2000

actually that isn't an Auntie Andrea one - it is another one I made, but not for a neice or nephew.

ah - here is the 2nd one - I took a wild guess and it was in the first folder I looked in - I made it in late 2000 ... I wonder why I have that folder in with the 2001 folders though? ... I really need to sort out some of those old folders of photos ... LOL

and after much hunting around in folders of photos I found the 3rd one, made in 2003.

Hmmm ... i have found some photos of stuff that is not finished ... wasn't then, still isn't now! LOL

so ...

here are just one or 3 of my numerous UFOs :

(a UFO is an Un Finished Object)

this is really only an idea for some fabric scraps someone gave me, and some more I already had ... I will probably find this little pile somewhere in a box when i finish my sorting out ...

this lot is probably in a box somewhere too ... more scraps I got from various people/places

... they talk to me, and tell me they want to be things, but then I never seem to get around to actually making them all ... I need 50 more hours in each day ...

hmmm ... a pile of "sig scquares"

... we swap these on the scquilters yahoogroup ... I now have heaps more ... all in a nice pile or 2 in a box (and I know where that one is) ... I plan to make them into a quilt (or 2) one year ... I also have 2 piles of Scquilters ICQ sig squares to make into quilts too ... one year ... sigh ...

aaahrgh ... there is a mozzie in here (itch itch scratch scratch grrrrr)

... and I still have not found that other photo I was looking for ...

but I found this

a few years ago, group of us used to meet one evening each week and do crafty stuff ... one of the things we did was to all do blocks from someones copy of a quilting book ... not sure what the title of the book was - it was one of the ones written by Margaret Rolfe ... with lots of quilt blocks of Aussie animals etc in it ... I chose to do a kangaroo one - which is the block in the middle of this quilt ... it was supposed to be 2 colours but I couldn't decide between the green or the blue with the brown "skippy" ... so I decided to use both and have grass and sky ... then I added the black around it and then the border of furnishing fabric samples (which was what the block in the middle was made from too!) I decided that the "skipawobbly" (we give kangaroos all sorts of nick names ;-) looked like it was hopping away so I called the quilt "Oo roo" (Hooroo is one of many Aussie ways of saying goodbye/see u later/whatever)

This is something I threw together with 5 squares of fabric I got in a bag of scraps, and some black velvet!

I was going to arrange it the other way, so the black squares were not on the corners ... but my daughter was playing with the fabric and she said it looked better this way ... so I decided "why not?" and did it her way ... I think she was right ;-)

Anyway ... the mozzies are still eating me (probably means they will follow me to the bedroom too ... that or their mates are already there)

but ... I DID find that other photo I was looking for (it was in the same folder as the 3rd crochet "Auntie Andrea" rug ;-)

... I won't put it in here with this lot, because that is another story ... maybe tomorrow ... or later if I decide to blog about feather stitch first ... (that was the stitch for this week's TAST challenge).

goodnight ...

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

The things I find in my sewing room ...

I went into my sewing room the other night, and look what I found under the desk!

yes - Spook, sound asleep IN my box of nice black fabric that I have been using to make crazy quilt blocks!
(oops - I moved the other box off the top of it when I was looking for something in there the other day ... and I SHOULD have put it back ;-)

Sunday, February 11, 2007

EYE have still been stitching

This week's stitch, for the TAST (Take A Stitch Tuesday) challenge (on Sharon's blog ) is Algerian Eye stitch and/or Eyelet Stitch ... so ...

... I grabbed the first bit of felt I found, that still had some room on it, and had a play - so now I have a whole bunch of eyelet thingys next to my Borg cube:

... I also added an eyelet thingy, with a detatched chain attatched to it, and a row of dots to my Borg cube (it wasn't originally intended to be a Borg cube, but I keep calling it that because it reminds me of one ... "I am Loquiltus of Borg, prepare to have your stash assimilated" ?)

I also did another odd Cretan stitch thingy, on another bit of white felt, the other day:

It turns into something more like fly stitch at one end, and an eyelet at the other end (and I think I actually did that before Sharon posted it as this week's stitch! ;-) I hate the fact that I have to keep turning it around as I work it, but for some odd reason I seem to keep doing bits of Cretan stitch because I like it when I end up with things like this!

On the other end of the felt (which is actually a really odd shaped left over bit, so I will probably cut it into 2 rectangles when/if I actually join these up and make a wallhanging/quilt or something) I did a couple of black Eyes with dotted lines to make it look like they are drifting in the breeze (like those thistle seeds do ;-) and then I had a fiddle and did some more stitching underneath them ...

First was the row of black blanket stitch on the bottom, then a row of black Cretan stitch (with half an eylet at each end ;-) and then I did 2 rows of yellow blanket stitch (back to back).

I also started fiddling around making something with a bit of brown felt:

The bit of red/yellow/black ribbon was actually an old half rotten bit that I found on the ground while walking the dog a few days ago! It caught my eye because it looked interesting ... it actually has a design that looks like little bones embroidered on it! ... so I picked it up, took it home, dunked it in some water and then dipped it into the washing powder and gave it a bit of a rub and then zipped it into the pocket of something that I was putting in the load of washing I was doing ... and then "found" it again when I next wore the pants that had that zip up pocket that the ribbon had been washed in. (I do that a lot - it is a very easy way to wash little bits of stuff that I find/pick up off the sewing room floor/rescue from the dog/whatever ;-)

I have actually done quite a bit more on that bit of brown felt since I took this photo, but I have not taken another photo yet ... but I know what I am going to use it for now - it is going to be a small bag, with a polar fleece lining (because I decided that I could make it fit the rules for a challenge where the item has to be (or have something to do with) some kind of container, and include the colour orange, polar fleece, stripes, and a "found object" ... I hope we are allowed to make more than one item - I already have a couple of other ideas for that challenge too! (what I might not be able to find is enough time to actually MAKE them ... sigh)

I also still have some other stuff to post here sometime, but my posting will not be as prolific as it was in January, because I am back at work/kids are back at school/things have gone back to being a bit more busy and I probably won't have time to be in here all night very often ... LOL
btw ... talking about things I have not had time to post stuff about yet - guess where I went last weekend?

and guess where I would rather be instead of having to be at work every day ... ;-)

Friday, February 09, 2007


... into the sunset?

Wheeeeeeeeeeeeeee ..... ?

Sunset - yes, Flying - no
( ... I wish )

When I make the photo lighter you can see how high I wasn't:
... I was actually half way up a ladder beside the house - which is where I take a lot of my sunset photos from - I have to stand on something (in this case a ladder ;-) to be able to see any of the hills that the sun sets behind, over the horribly huge roof behind us ...

By the way ... hopefully you didn't even notice the change, but my blog has now moved/updated/whatever u call it to the new blogger ... I could have done it ages ago but I never bothered ... but now I kind of had to - I had been ignoring the link to change over, and signing in to the "old blogger" ... but when I went to sign in today there was an extra few words on that link ... that said "you can only do this once" ... so if I didn't do it this time, I would have had to do it next time I logged in anyway ...

Funny ... this bit I am using now (the page where we edit and create blog posts) looks just like the old one did ... LOL

... except it now has my gmail e-addy up the top instead of my blogger username ... but my blogger username was the same as my gmail one anyway ;-)

and ... the only thing I was worried about not working worked even better than I thought - I actually already had another blogger blog that I had created using my gmail sign in (so I could have a sticky beak at how the "new blogger" worked before I moved this blog and the other 2 I had on blogger before google owned it) and it didn't get confused and/or mess up or anything ... and it now lists that one along with the other 3 ... it is so nice to have things actually work like they should do.

Anyway ... I had better do the other thing that I came in and sat at the computer to do - I have some photos to put up somewhere.

- sorry ... unless you are a scquilter who is on my canberrascquilters yahoogroup you won't get to see them. (nor would you be that likely to be interested - they are just a few photos of a group of us who went to lunch together, to celebrate a member's birthday)

... and if you don't know what a "scquilter" is, then you are not one ... but if you are an Aussie or a Kiwi (or used to live there/were born there/etc) who is interested in being a member of a large quilty yahoogroup you can go to and join ...

I will try and post some more stuff here later tonight, or sometime this weekend - I have been doing some more stitching, and I have some other stuff to put here - stuff that I was too busy to put here during the week (I can't stay up until "stupid o'clock" posting to my blog every night now that my holidays are over and I am back at work ... sigh)

Saturday, February 03, 2007

More stitches ...

Last week's "Take A Stitch Tuesday" stitch was Cretan Stitch and this week was Chevron Stitch ... I have been doing the stitches, but I have been busy posting about bugs and stuff instead of posting pictures of the stitching ;-)

< ... we interrupt this transmission for a slight side-track:>

hmmm ...

so much for an early night ... I just went and put some photos onto the other computer before deleting them off the memory card ... and I heard a loud bang and the sound of sirens, and dogs barking, outside and then another loud bang ... so I went out the front to see what was going on and it turns out there was a house burning (and several fire engines putting the fire out) over in a nearby street! (I hope there was nobody inside and/or they are ok, ... and insured - the houses in that area are all only about 2 or 3 years old ... it looks like it started in the garage but with huge flames like there were, the whole house is probably burnt/smoke damaged inside) ... after seeing that there is no way I will go to sleep for another hour or so ...

< "We now return you to normal transmission" >

Anyway ... where was I?

oh ... nowhere much yet ... tried to upload too many photos at once and left the room after I hit the upload button ... came back to find that they didn't work ... I might just stick to doing them one at a time ... (that seems to work better with big photos - which most of these are - if you click on them in here you should get to see the full sized versions of them, provided thay come up as clickable links like they usually do :-)

I did some more fiddling on that white bit of felt:

I finished the blanket stitch worm, and the yellow detached chain "forget me not" flower now has some black on it (so it doesn't really look like a "forget me not" any more) and I also did a yellow spider that is sort of based on detached chain stitch. I also added a yellow "lazy daisy" middle to the circle of detatched chain between the fish and the snake's head. Then (I think it was after I did the Cretan stitch on the purple felt in the next photo) I got carried away and did some Cretan stitch on the side of the odd bit of herringbone on the bottom right corner.

I did a little bit of herringbone stitch and a bit of detached chain (and some blanket and feather stitch/etc) on a bit of purple felt, then I did a whole pile of Cretan stitch (with the odd bit of detached chain/etc to decorate it) on there as well:

I think that the Cretan stitch makes better chicken wire than herringbone does! ... especially if I work it so the rows overlap and twist around each other like chicken wire does. Herringbone stitch makes good "Cyclone fence" wire though (I think Cyclone is actually a brand name for that sort of wire fencing - it is the stuff they often use around building sites/etc ... and I have seen it on fences around schools too - it is wire looped together but it is thicker wire and not twisted like chicken wire is ... still not with me? - think of that wire fence stuff that the "baddies" end up climbing over to escape in those TV shows/movies where the police chase someone on foot and loose them ;-)

Then I realised that Cretan stitch might also make a good fish, so I did one of those, and also "fiddled" a bit more with Cretan Stitch, on this bit of black felt:

Someone, who saw it at a quilt meeting last night, said it looked like a dragon (it must be those weird bits that look a bit like chicken legs in the middle at the bottom that do it ;-)

Then, once I had taken a photo of the purple felt, I added this fancy yarn to the weird round Cretan stitch thingy ... that was something that started small and then kind of grew until it was touching the curly thing beside it ... so now they kind of look like a sperm fertilizing an egg!

I am not sure if I like the fuzzy stuff on there or not ... but my original idea for the purple felt was to use the yellow thread for my stitches and this fuzzy thread and a few other things that looked good with it as well and make an interesting bit of "arty farty" felt ... I might add some more stuff to it later, if Sharon gives us any more stitches that I think would look good on/with it.

This one did:

I think this was my first fiddle with chevron stitch ... I did 2 rows mirror imaged and then added some lazy daisy and knots and stuff. It sort of looks like a drawing of a space ship (maybe it is "Yellow Dwarf" - sister ship to "Red Dwarf" LOL)

Then I decided to try some chevron stitch in a sort of square pattern and - in keeping with the space theme? - I ended up with a Borg cube! (maybe it is assimilating the yellow space ship at the top?)

I actually added more to this after I took that photo ... but I might put a photo of that here in my next post about "Take A Stitch Tuesday" stuff, because I have not taken another photo yet ... LOL