Sunday, August 29, 2010

Small constellation finished....

The Small Constellation baby quilt is finished!
I'm thrilled with it. I think it's lovely.
But do I think it's lovely because it is? I think it's lovely because it didn't cost much? Or that it was born out of true patchwork values, making something out of virtually nothing? Now there's a few questions? I think the answer is 'yes to all of the above'!
You see the front is made completely from scraps....tiny triangles from the 2 1/2" binding offcuts and various white scraps that dictated the layout.
The back is a combo of scrap and stash offcuts .
The binding uses all those bits of left over binding from every other quilt all joined together in a scrappy haphazard way. (Actually that's not quite true. I placed them as stripe, dot, stripe, dot etc....!)The funny thing (or is it irony?) is that with scrappy binding is that you get a pile of new triangles to add to the collection for the next quilt. Fantastic!I really enjoy making these little scrappy maverick star 6" blocks, they're so easy and once you get the knack you can even chain piece, have the iron ready and speed up the completion process.
I got so organised this morning that I created another round of stars for a draw string bag to go with the quilt. Again, totally made with left overs.
I'd say that that's a very good week's worth of stash busting!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Small constellation.....

I admit it. I'm on the prowl for pretty much anyone in my remote circle having a baby. I love making baby quilts and look for any excuse.
And whilst I have a pile of unfinished quilts in varying degrees of 'unfinished-ness', I leap at the prospect of starting something small and baby-ish for a quick gratifying start and finish. What's more, baby quilts are a great chance to try out new techniques ....sort of prototype's for bigger versions.
The penny dropped the other night when R announced that Ms F's baby bump is now showing. did I miss the fact that her teacher had announced her pregnancy to the class. I must have been asleep. Opp-or-toon-ity!
I have a small stash of the little triangles that are cut from the binding joins. My stash is rather healthy given Kay's contributions. These little triangles make fantastic mini scrappy Maverick Stars, detailed in Crazy Mom's 'using it all post'.
So this little quilt has been born out of tiny little triangle offcuts and all the white offcuts that I also stash. So far, I have a small constellation made completely out of almost nothing! Fantastic!Here is a shot of me at work basting away tonight. R took the shot and I love it. It's blurry because of the camera settings but it makes me look like a quilter woman possessed. How true is that!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Top of the wazza.....

When you sing at the Town Hall and you're only in Grade 3 and the Junior's pretty much all up from there...isn't it?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Spring has almost sprung....

After a very cold winter I found this in the garden today. Along with a clear blue sky, mild breeze and the smell of spring about to burst. Love it!
It's forecast to rain tomorrow which we desperately need so I'll pop this little bunch of sunshine on the window sill and dream of warmer weather to come!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Skipping Girl....

I have been working on my Skipping Girl Katie Jump Rope quilt for ages and that's not even counting in the time that I dreamt of owning a quilt with these fabrics and the time it took to acquire the fabrics.
I cut the squares out in October 2009 and pieced the front in January 2010 school holidays. It has been folded over a coat hanger as a flimsie since then.
The reason it stalled again was because I just could not decide on a backing that would do these gorgeous fabrics justice.
I bought fabrics on line only to discard it once it arrived. I bought others from various stores only to decide they were too brazen for these subtle 'working class' prints. It was a dilema.
Then one night, or maybe it was the wee morning hours, as I tossed and turned in one of those wretched half awake sleeps I seem to have these days, I suddenly remembered the batch of solids that I had just purchased for my Munki Munki quilt. By many of these colours were very similar to those used in the Katie Jump Rope range. And as solids, they weren't going to compete with the prints.
I had around 15" left of my matching horde so I cut strips of 10" and 5". I thought these widths were mathematically appropriate given the front squares were 5".
Wash the dishes, dry the dishes,
have a cup of tea.
Don't forget the sugar.
A-one, a two, a three......

I'm thrilled! The Skipping Girl quilt is now back on the agenda for a finish!

Monday, August 16, 2010

He's done it again....

L attended a school friend's birthday party yesterday.
When I phoned to RSVP I asked, seeing as it was on a pirate invitation, if the boys had to dress up.
"Yes....has he got any camouflage gear?", replied B's mother.
"It's a laser skirmish party....well it's not really because it's outside, so it's not really laser...but they'll be running around with guns doing you think L will be all right with that?"
"Ahh....yes", I said gathering my thoughts, "and if he's not we'll deal with it."
This party had all the hallmarks of being problematic if ever there was one! Not to mention that I have never purchased a gun or weapon for L, apart from the super soaker for the pool and the odd sword for dress ups. He does however have a plethora of video games that involve the odd shoot up, shoot them down action. All that aside, he's never been one to 'play' soldiers etc.
Leading up to the party I tried to explain to L what was going to happen.
This is particularly important because L has a severe receptive and expressive language disorder. Communicating and understanding his surroundings and peers is often extremely difficult. Melt-downs are inevitable. Explaining the day's proceedings was made even more important when one of the mums came up to me at last week's birthday party (must be birthday season!) and said that they'd been discussing whether L would cope whilst they were all standing on the sidelines at football that weekend. Now L's abilities are the subject of mother gossip....and some are brazen enough to repeat it back to me! My jaw dropped open and for once every witty retort I'm very capable of delivering fell silent as I just nodded and agreed rather meekly, "that of course he would be."
We got to the party and had another quiet word. I told L that if he didn't like it, that would be OK but try and have fun.....what else do you say?
The set up was fantastic with inflatable barricades and the guns which operate on infra-red sensors were impressive. The boys were super excited.
He lined up for the briefing with the boys. There were a lot of instructions presented by the gruff co-ordinator in army fatigues. I worried about how much he was absorbing but he was getting the slapstick and keeping up with the jokes.
Teams were assigned. L was in red which was positive as that's his favourite colour.
They played. He played. He contributed. He was involved. There was no melt down. No tears (only from the losing team which was blue!). He had a blast.
I went home a very happy mum, surprised at L's ability to handle the sitations that I think (and other people by all accounts) he won't cope with and left L to tell the tale. Good on you L!
Let's hope the discussion at this week's football game will consist of what a good team player L is!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

AQC....8 months and counting....

The girls made an executive decision at last Thursday's Sew & Sews and that was that now that the dates have been released for the 2011 Australasian Quilt Convention, we would take advantage of current low priced airfares and fly over the Melbourne for the day.The dates are 14th to 17th April. Saturday is the 16th. I reckon that's 8 months plus one from now! Whooo hooo!For quilters, this is an exhibition not to be missed....even if it's just to spend the day in Melbourne's beautiful Royal Exhibition Hall. We had a blast earlier this year and vowed to come back. Now we're on our way!
On the production line front....I finished the binding on my Munki Munki Rainbow quilt this morning.It's pretty dismal here today, cold and incredibly windy and obliging quilt holder uppers are in short supply. I've managed a few shots but due to the size (80" x 65"), it's impossible for me to get a complete shot on my own. I've still got threads to tidy up, so that's probably not a bad thing!I've used the last of my Ikea heart fabric on the back and bound the quilt in a white on orange polka dot. Speaking of which. Why is it called 'polka'? Humm....need to wiki that one!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Plodding along....

I managed to squeeze in some time on the weekend to baste my Munki Munki Rainbow quilt only to find that my planned time to quilt was turned upside down. I ended up having to stay with L at a school friend's birthday party....actually I was called back as soon as I'd got home, so that was even worse! But that's another story.
So I've been catching an hour here and there these past two nights to quilt. I have 8 more squares left to go which is just under a third, so I'll probably finish it off by tomorrow night. We have Sew & Sew's tonight...and you can't really travel with your quilting, so I'll be piecing my Hope Valley 1/2 square triangle instead.
I'm really happy with it so far. I've chosen what I would term a medium sized stipple. This is working well and not covering the beautiful munki munki prints beyond recognition! I love so many of these blocks, the images in the centre and the solid colour to frame them. I've managed to mix in some gorgeous aubergine, salmon, tomato, duck egg blue, violet and what's become my staple colour, celery.
I can't wait for this one to be finished!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Half square triangle charm.....

Having successfully finished the little Rainbow Magic 1/2 square triangle quilt, I've braced myself and begun a full sized project.
I've whipped out the notebook, calculator and my collection of Hope Valley fat quarter fabrics and after several calculations and permutations I decided on 5" squares....the same as charm squares. I debated about 6" which gives a convenient cut out of the 18" side of the fat quarter but I don't just seemed too big for what I want to make. (And I can always use the off-cuts in something else!)
The combo is the full suite of Hope Valley (24 colours) and Kona Solid Ash. Quite vintage and already yielding a few 'ooh's and ahhs' from certain members of the family!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Tickling my fancy.....

This is not what I'm currently working on.
It's what's working on me!
A lovely pile of Anna Maria Horner Garden Party prints that I've pulled out of the cupboard, piled up, unfolded, re-folded and re-stacked. Gorgeous!