Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Winter and w.i.p

This is the view from Karaka Bay, across the harbour entrance to the Wainui Hills and the hills behind Wainuiomata - the Orongaronga range I think.  How lovely it looks - and how cold it is!  we have been spoiled with such a long, beautiful summer - thank goodness for merino thermals!  Photo of course courtesy of my son Phil.

I've been sharing some pincushions lately, and here's another one -

Well, one face of the six to be precise.  And I think those pins are from Qantas.  The canvas was quite fine and the idea was to 'design' different stitches for each side; I always loved doing canvaswork, found it very soothing.

I've been doing more with strings and right now the sewing room is an untidy mess as I decided to check out the tops with their backings and which will I quilt next?  .........  found some I'd almost forgotten about!

I have started quilting the top my granddaughters made, or at least they painted the calico to make pictures, I joined them and have stalled wondering what to do - it is such a large piece!  I then had a brainwave, cleared everything off the big kauri table in the living room and hauled out the machine I bought on a whim after the Palmerston symposium.  I have no wish to bad mouth any product but have had considerable trouble with this machine so relegated it to a corner.......... out it came, set up, plugged in - and then I had to read the instructions!

So far I have done a wavy line round the pictures, lots of thread ends to be sewn in later.  Then I thought I might have a look at other stitches for the white sashing, so back to the instructions and I'm trying out some of the fancy stitches.

and I've numbered them for future reference - the ordinary stitched to the right were because I hadn't read that I had to press the # key first, before the number....... who says you can't teach an old dog new tricks?!

The table is great for moving the quilt around, I just have to remember to fold it away  - really don't want both cats sleeping on it all night.

I've enjoyed some lovely stitching days with my small group and when they come here, particularly at this time of year, I usually have a pot of soup on the stove and one of my friends calls in at the bakery on the way

It tasted great too!

This is the storm that probably brought the recent snow

The photo was taken from Petone beach, and that's Somes Island about to be engulfed by the southerly - courtesy son Phil.

I was about to say that I've made a resolution to post more often - then I read the thought for today - "That list of New Year Resolutions you made last year can be used again. It's as good as new." W.G.P

Thanks for stopping by, be back soon

Thursday, 2 May 2013

I'm hooked!

The fishing must be good to risk these conditions!  Phil took this photo over Easter when he spent some time house-sitting for friends in Auckland - do click on it to get the full impact.

No, my hooking is quite different.  A few days ago Leann put a link to the Great British Sewing Bee - thank you so much Leann, I have loved watching the competition.  Good Old Aunty BBC, it's all done in a very civilised manner, the contestants are such nice people - and what's more I'm seriously thinking of searching out the patterns and dress fabric still hiding in my sewing room - how's that for being hooked?

Right now though I have quite a few things I want to finish and I have finally got my Dreams of Venice put together to my satisfaction.    The block has several pieces and I chose it to showcase the lovely fabric my other son brought back from Italy - a few years ago I must confess.  I selected a range  fabrics I wanted to put with it, then found the block which was perfect.

Lots of auditions later I had two blocks on the design wall -

Oh, sugar-plum fairy - blogger is playing up - took me several attempts to put that photo up and it's all distorted - this block is made up of squares!

See what the next one comes out like,

At last!  I loved the pictures on this fabric,  I showed restraint and used only two, but this lady with her cats and pot plants was so appealing.

Here goes, this is how I finally sewed the top.  Originally I had all the blocks in the same orientation but it just didn't work;  I made the blocks, then started wondering about how they should be set - and then, shame on me, decided just to join them up as they were all ready.......... lazy, lazy and as my dear Mum would have said, lazy people take the most pains!  Well, it took ages to unpick one half, then re-arrange some of the pieces as they were directional - I also should have sprayed with starch as I can see I shall have some troubles with the quilting.......

I wanted the Italian fabric to surround the other units which are about my life here in NZ and hold it all together.

I have several more things I want to share with you, but tonight it's like pushing water up hill, blogger is having an off day!

I'll try one more photo, back to Wainuiomata beach for the sunset -

I'm sure there's a taniwha getting ready to leap out!

Maybe there is something in the air, new moon, old moon - I know the drivers around Petone these last few days have been paid up members of the Idiot's Club!! and as my thought for today puts it, "If shared problems lessen the burden, how come we get so upset in a traffic jam?", PK Shaw.

Welcome to my new follower; I shall return soon and hope blogger is in a better mood!