Saturday, 28 November 2015

RSC 2015 The End is Near

November marks the end of the Rainbow Scrap Challenge run by Angela at SoScrappy.  This year November is the time to sew with lime green scraps.

When I rummaged through my scraps I realised lime was conspicuous by its' absence.  Then I checked what I had made earlier in the year when I was supposed to be making dark green blocks and discovered I had all shades of green made.  So I just pulled a variety of light and dark green scraps to make my blocks.  I figure it will all work out in the end.

I started off by finishing the Twinkler stars I had laid out ready to sew - I showed them to you here.  Those ones were joined by a whole lot more.

I have an idea for layout for these, and will get into that as soon as I have pieced the Indigo ones.  I am getting impatient to see if my idea works.
Next I got stuck into the Bow Tie blocks and made 17 of those.  One little Indigo one jumped in under my needle and got made.

That's not a problem as I didn't get any Indigo blocks made when it was their turn.
I had a better run with the Crossroads block.  There seemed to be enough lime and light green strips to cut what I needed for a limish block.

On a roll, I made the Indigo Crossroads block too.

That's my RSC sewing for this week.
Why not go take a look at what the others have created for the RSC this week here.

Til next time.....Keep on stitching

Friday, 27 November 2015

Keeping Busy

With Christmas around the corner, the round of end of year parties has started.  Its a busy time, but it also heralds the start of the summer holidays.

I've been doing some secret sewing.  The parcel to Julie (who blogs here) for the random give away I did a little while back is posted, but silly me didn't take any photos!!  Hopefully she will share some when she gets it.

Earlier this week I put the borders onto this little quilt top donated by some kind soul to Stitching Hearts.

It was hand pieced and a bit lumpy & wonky.  A good go with a steam iron laid all the seams flat, and it was time for the borders. 

Nothing flash - just enough to get it to the size we use at Stitching Hearts.  The fabrics were very old, mostly 50s and 60s I think.  I don't think there were any patchwork cottons at all.

Cute little cartoon pup in a shoe

Voiles & lawn in this one

The pink in the centre bottom is a seersucker. 
Whose dresses were made with the other fabrics I wonder?

Old fashioned prints & poly/cottons
A bit of a challenge!

On Wednesday 25th November, 5 P&O cruise ships came into Sydney Harbour together to celebrate the official naming of P&O's 2 newest ships.   The ships were Pacific Dawn, Pacific Jewel, Pacific Aria, Pacific Eden and Pacific Pearl.  We almost always have a cruise ship in the harbour, but all 5 at once was a bit spectacular. 

They gathered at the entrance to the harbour early on Wednesday, and formed a V formation to all sail into the Harbour together at 6.30am.
The Dearly Beloved just happened to be going on the Manly Ferry that afternoon, so I asked begged him to take some photos.

Pacific Aria at the Old Passenger Terminal, Circular Quay totally dwarfing it.  One of the ferries which serve the wharves within the Harbour on the left and the Harbour Bridge in the background on the right.  Ferries to Manly are much bigger as they have to go out across open water at the Heads.

In the photo below is Fort Denison in the foreground, the first fort built in Sydney Cove from local sandstone and completed in 1857.  It was used as a prison for hardened criminals initially and was nicknamed "Pinchgut" because of the poor rations issued to the prisoners.  It is now a restaurant and wedding venue.

Think this next one is Pacific Dawn.  The yacht in the foreground is one of the entries in the Sydney to Hobart Yacht Race which will begin on Boxing Day

And this is Pacific Pearl.

Quite a spectacular sight!

Til next time.....Keep on stitching.

Sunday, 15 November 2015

When All Else Fails....

Start a new project!  LOL

With all the WIPs and UFOs in my cupboard and all over my cutting table, I was totally uninspired this week.  All I felt like was some mindless piecing.  So I reached for my baggie of 5" squares, which was obscenely full. Lime Green is the colour of the month for November in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge run by Angela, so to assuage the guilt I was feeling at not doing anything for that, I pulled a whole load of green 5" squares.  None of them are lime green, but what the heck, they are scraps.  It hasn't made a difference to the baggie!  LOL

In no time at all they were pieced into 4 patches.  Then I added some cream tone on tone fabric for sashing at Friday Quilters this week, and a few 3" cornerstones.  This is where I got to by Friday night.

I would have preferred it to be 4 x 4 layout, but if I had done that, the quilt would have been a bit big.  It is destined for Stitching Hearts, and we make our lap quilts a maximum of 48" wide.  This means we can get two quilts out of a single width of wadding, and minimise our wastage.
Choosing the border fabric.....

This is what I went with.....

I had just enough fabric to cut 5" strips for the green border - less than one 2" strip left over.  Whew!

All done and all made with fabrics from stash.  Ready to go with me on Thursday to Stitching Hearts for our meeting.  It will be the last working meeting for the year.
As it was still afternoon yesterday when I got that done, and there was some more sewing time, I reached for the squares I had prepped for my green Twinklers.  I went back to check what I had made earlier this year when we were doing green, and found that I had not followed instructions, and I had made a mixture of light and dark green and everything in between.  Here is the batch I made earlier this year.
First lot of green Twinklers made in May
This time I am doing the same so that hopefully I'll end up with enough of both light greens and darks.  I've got virtually no lime green at all, and as this is an exercise in using up scraps of what you do have, I'm not going to go out to buy any.  I got this lot half made before I had to leave off to make dinner last night.

Poor quality night time shot, but there you go.  Planning to finish them off, and the rest of the prepped Twinklers today after I have done this post.
Linking this up rather late to Angela's blog for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.  Time to go take a look at what others have pieced this week.
During the week I headed up to the library to take a look at an exhibition on the local ship building industry in the 19th Century put on by the Local History group.  Of course I came home with an armload of books.  I have been enjoying "A Quilters Holiday", one of the Elm Creek Quilters series.  Ages since I have read one of those and I am thoroughly enjoying it.  Have you read any of them?
Til next time.....Keep on stitching.

Tuesday, 10 November 2015

Quilting Shirley's Quilts

In 2014 our friend Shirley from Stitching Hearts passed away.  I blogged about Shirley here at the time of her funeral.

Some of her part completed quilts were given to Stitching Hearts to do with as we wished.  I was asked to quilt three of her quilts, and in the last week or so I have made a start.  The one I chose to work on first, is a sweet little quilt with baskets.

It is beautifully pieced.  The baskets have been made in two shades of blue, and they look like they are woven.

I used a Frixion pen in pink to mark a design in the large plain white sections.  The design was marked using a template I made eons ago.  Goodness knows where I found the original design, but I traced it onto templastic and have used it on several quilt.  
Here I am launching into the quilting on my domestic sewing machine. 

It is always a bit heart stopping when you mark up a quilt like this.  Even though I've done it before and I know it will vanish, there is always a slightly horrid feeling of "what if".

I shouldn't have worried though.  I used the "shot of steam" function on my steam iron to erase the markings.  You hold the iron just over the marked area and the steam does all the work for you.  You don't need to actually touch the fabric with the iron.  It works like magic.

I used a silky white rayon thread made by Gutterman on this section.  Love the texture the quilting has given this quilt.  It is due of course to the wadding, which is a good quality one, and I think is a wool/poly mix.

I have used a half motif on the sides and a quarter motif in the corners.  Only 2 more motifs to do and a few half ones.
I decided to outline quilt the baskets in a royal blue rayon embroidery thread, and I have stitched in the ditch on all the seams in the basket itself.   I think the section between the basket and the handle needs something.  Any ideas??

No idea yet what I will do with the borders.  Hopefully inspiration will hit when the time comes.

Til next time.....Keep on stitching.

Tuesday, 3 November 2015

Melbourne Cup Lunch

The Central Coast Leagues Club Bridge Club organises a Melbourne Cup Lunch each year.  It is one of the highlights of the bridge world in our local area.  As usual, the organising committee outdid themselves.  The theme this year was yellow.

The event is held on the Parkview Room at the Leagues Club.  It was all decked out for us with fabulous decorations.  We start with a morning of bridge, then have a lovely meal provided by the Club.

Our table - yellow flowers, and table runner

The "bookies" running the sweeps.  Yellow daisies every where.

Matt was our Director for the bridge.  Behind us was the "lucky door" prize.  

We were encouraged to place a gold "penny" with our name on it into one of the baskets.  Each basket had the name of one of the horses in the race on it, and when the winning horse was known, the "pennies" in the basket had a share of some chockies.
Did you see the yellow nail polish I am wearing in the photo above?  Just in case you didn't, here it is in all its glory.
The yellow theme was carried through to a wonderful spread for morning tea.  Every item had yellow on, or in, it - yellow icing, yellow smarties etc. etc.

The empty plates are a testament to the yummies.
The room is not called the Parkview Room for nothing.  Today was a bleak, wet day, but even so the view is gorgeous, with the waterfront in the distance.

There was a really good turn out today. Here is the play area, with the lunch tables just visible at the rear.  You can also see that heaps of people got behind the theme and dressed in yellow at least in part.

Yellow personal scorers were provided for everyone, and we found some yellow pens we had from a previous congress to use.

Surprisingly, we won.
Lunch was delicious, and plenty of it.

After lunch we had a quiz with all the questions having either horsy or yellow answers.  Can you think of 5 yellow animated characters?  What about 5 songs that have yellow in the title?  Our table got too many answers wrong to win that one. 
Then it was time for the hat parade.

The prize taken out - by Me!  Yay!  And here is my prize - a pot of pretty daisies wrapped in yellow, tied with a yellow ribbon.  We don't have any like that in our garden.
The men had a parade as well.

Won by this dapper race goer.

Lastly we watched the race on a big projector.  The actual Melbourne Cup this year was won by Prince of Penzance, a complete outsider at 100 to 1.  And I won $12 in the sweep, because my horse Max Dynamite came in second.   My Dearly Beloved won second in the lucky door prize - a couple of free games.

Did we have fun?  You Bet!

Were we lucky?  I'll Say!

Sunday, 1 November 2015

Good Bye Brown

And what comes next??  I have been wondering what colour Angela will choose for the November colour this year in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge.

I have been sick all week, so not much of anything going on around here.  Fed up with lolling about in bed yesterday, I snuck downstairs and made up these:

14 little brown Bow Tie blocks to add to the 6 I made a week or so back.  At the start of the year I had not intended to make so many blocks each month, but these are so quick and addictive to make.  I just love doing them and they keep on leaping in under my sewing machine needle unassisted.  LOL  I shall have to think about a setting for them before too long.
Then this afternoon I went and added the borders to this quilt.

It was brought into Stitching Hearts quite a while ago, but was a bit small as it was, so I brought it home to add the borders.
I have picked it up several times since it came home with no inspiration at all as to what the borders should be.  This week I was trying to tidy my workroom a bit (Ha Ha!) and found the quilt, sitting sadly in a heap.  As soon as I saw it I knew it needed a narrow purple frame border, and a large print for the outer one.  As it happened, last time I was at Stitching Hearts I brought home a pile of fabrics to destash for the group and the fabric I chose for this quilt was in that pile.
Just enough purple to cut 1.5" strips for the first border, and just enough of the print to cut the 3.5" strips for the second border.  Nothing left of the purple, and just one 2" strip of the fruit print.  Feeling chuffed.
The fruit print is not a fabric I would have ever purchased,  but I think it looks good with the quilt. 
There are some fun fabrics in the blocks, like this building in the corner.

And the blue pottery.

And also a lovely floral bouquet.  Wouldn't mind a piece of that fabric!

You might remember me telling you about a little baby quilt I made here to take to Melbourne for a Naming Ceremony.  Well here is the little cutie on her quilt.

Isn't that just the cutest photo??

Don't forget to go take a look at all the other brown goodies made this month in the Rainbow Scrap Challenge link up here.

Til next time.....Keep on Stitching

PS Just noticed that the colour for November is lime green.