Thursday, March 28, 2013

The best laid plans can sometimes go wrong!

Following on from my last post I decided to sew together the remaining two panels in my scrappy bargello style quilt ready for folding and slicing. I then reviewed the measurements needed once again and realised that I had miscalculated - I need another 6" on each long side! So I now need to work out what I am going to do here.

I thought of a narrow strip all around the quilt in either a very dark
or very light then a half panel i.e. using 3 squares instead of 6. Alternatively I could still use a narrow
 border strip, then sew 6" strips in long panels on either side. If anyone has any ideas please let me know!




My next good idea was to pull a few weeds out of one of the garden beds, I was out there about one hour - noticed the ongoing tendon problem in my right wrist starting to play up a bit - never mind just down some pain relief and carry on a while longer.


Good idea yesterday morning was to hand quilt around the centre squares of the nine patch blocks in my light Kaffe Fasset quilt which I showed in my last posting.  Don't know why I did this really as I hadn't hand quilted for ages because of very painful hand problems.
Well, managed about twelve squares and the pain really kicked in.
The tendonitis had flared up with a vengeance!


That was the end of the quilting.

You can see the results on the right.

With my thumb immobile and my wrist prevented from bending with the metal in the splint I am reduced to sorting through a box of scraps which I had intended to cut up into tumblers and 1 and 1/4" wide strips. I think I could do this if I hold the rotary cutter very carefully. I will also have a rummage through my clean-up cuts.                                        


You will notice here that I have not managed to align these two pictures, one above and one to the right - more practice needed.

Good Friday tomorrow for us in NZ, hoping for a quiet Easter and catching up with family.

I hope you all have a lovely Easter holiday and will leave you with a shot of our local beach, hopefully we will find some time to have a walk down there over the holiday. More of my ramblings early next week.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Monday Sunrise

Another week - and what a glorious way to
begin Monday morning!

This was the sunrise which greeted me this morning from the window of my sewing room so I just had to head out with my camera. Streaks of apricot floating in the sky - one of my favourite colours.  Sunrise and sunsets are so special. When I first visited New Zealand in 1962/63 with Mum and Dad we sailed through Suez and most every evening would find me out on deck in time to enjoy the most amazing sights as darkness began to fall. No huge towering liners in those days with multi level decks, heaps of dining rooms, theatres and bars and glassed in viewing decks. Old style scrubbed wooden decks with the very basic style rails, just the right height for leaning on and looking at the colours of the sea and sky and enjoying the peace and quiet (everyone else seemed to have headed for the dining rooms by this time), just heaven.

I have been trying to work on a quilt for a friend who is unwell, I hope to get it to her for her birthday in early April. I bought a Kaffe Fasset book "Quilts in Sweden" and when I saw this small quilt pictured I knew it was for her. I ordered the fabrics from the States and what a pleasure it has been to work with these soft colours, I usually go for something more colourful. I was a bit premature putting the binding on (still to be stitched down on the back) when I realised I had missed quilting in a couple of places so that will be underway tomorrow.

I had another wander around the garden this morning as there was just one of these paint-brush lillies still in flower. They're actually called haemanthus I think but you can see why they are given the name above. They're a bulb, the speckled flower stalk shoots up to about six inches, flowers for only about two weeks then dies back, but about one month later two huge fleshy leaves appear - the slugs and snails love them! Seamus, our old Irish Setter, enjoys a wander around the garden so I have included a pic of him.   

Saturday, March 23, 2013

First post and last days of Summer


This is my first post, and without the help, kindness and encouragement of a number of quilter whose blogs I have followed for quite some time I may have given up! More work will be needed on my blog as I go along so please be patient with me and any feedback will be gratefully received!


We are officially in Autumn here in New Zealand and we have had an extremely hot, dry summer but the mornings and evenings are now becoming cooler and this is reflected in the quilts I am choosing to make, the plants remaining in the garden and the variety of birdlife. As you can see the blackbirds are having a feast on the remaining apples.

I have been a keen gardener for many, many years now and in the old days could spend all day out there, I find great inspiration for my quilts from the garden. Perhaps the following photos will show what I mean:
Rugosa hips
Bromeliad
I wait patiently for the rosehips at this time of year.

The bromeliad has the most lethal spikes on the leaves, not a plant to have near a pathway.




Scrappy Bargello 
I came upon a tutorial on the Quiltville site for this quilt, a jelly roll of Hoffman batiks in Watermelon plus lots of strips from my batik stash was the starting point. It is a work in progress and currently four panels are pinned up on the design wall, two more to go before I quilt  in two sections, this should be the easiest option on my domestic machine.

Thank you for visiting and do please call back again.