Wednesday 31 October 2018


It's Halloween today (which also means it's nearly Christmas!).

I know many of you have seen my Haunted House before, but for my newer followers, here's a couple of photos of my Haunted House that I stitched back in 2015. 

It's from a pattern by The Victoria Sampler, and you can read more about it here, and find all of my helpful tips and tricks on the Gingerbread Village tab at the top of my blog (or click here)

Happy Halloween everyone. 

Sunday 28 October 2018

Lady Wigram

I'm thrilled to be able to show this quilt that I've been secretly stitching for the last six months.  I gifted it to my mother in law yesterday, so now I can share it with you all.

My mother in law has always admired everything I make, but she isn't a quilter herself.  When my mother and father in law decided to move into a retirement village, I thought it was time I made them a quilt for their new home.

This pattern is called Bella Ruby and it's designed by Emma Di Stefano who owns Tree House Textiles in Melbourne, Australia. I met Emma at AQC in Melbourne, and she had her Bella Ruby quilt on display.  I loved the design, so I purchased the acrylic templates and started my own version for my mother in law.

People have commented that these aren't my usual fabric choices, and they're not, but I think it's important to make a gift that the recipient will like. My mother in law has always loved the burgundy colour in the William Morris fabric below.  I thought she would like the feed sack prints with all the little flowers in them.

Emma designed the pattern for hand piecing, although it is possible to machine piece it if you don't mind sewing Y seams.  I always planned to hand quilt this quilt, because if a top is hand pieced, it definitely deserves to be hand quilted! I used a combination of Aurifil 12wt and 28wt.  I use 12wt where it shows, and 28wt in the ditches.

I even tried some variegated Aurifil threads this time.

I've called this quilt "Lady Wigram" because my in laws now live in a suburb of Christchurch called Wigram.  Lady Wigram and her husband Sir Henry Francis Wigram, are both important figures in New Zealand's history. They have a strong connection with aviation history, and my husband thinks the 8 pointed stars look like propellers on planes.

I love how it's turned out, but more importantly, I'm thrilled that my mother in law loves it.

Quilt facts:
Pattern - acrylic templates from Tree House Textiles in Melbourne, Australia
Construction - I used the acrylic templates to hand cut the pieces, and then hand pieced them together.
Quilting - hand quilted with Aurifil 12wt and 28wt.
Size - 64" wide x 66" high  (163cm x 168cm)

Friday 26 October 2018

Needlepoint cushions

I do love a good needlepoint cushion! My mum and I both enjoy working on wool tapestries.  This is mum's latest finish.

It's designed by Bothy Threads and is called Morris Bell Flower.  This is how it looked before I took it to Nancy's Stitch Studio and got it stretched and turned into a cushion.

Look at all those stitches! Tapestry is very dense and completely covers the canvas.

I've made a tiny start on my new tapestry too.  My tapestry is by Kim McLean Designs and is only available from the Crewel Gobelin in Sydney, Australia. 

I'm looking forward to doing some slow stitching on this tapestry over the next year or so.  It's something I like to pick up when I take a break from other projects. 

I hope you all get some sewing time over the weekend.  It's Spring time here and I'm going to watch my son play cricket tomorrow.

Friday 19 October 2018

It's a Capital Day

I forgot to show you the mini quilt I made with my friend Anne for the Capital Quilters exhibition back in August.

The President's Challenge was titled "It's a Capital Day" and we had to make a mini quilt that represented our view of a "Capital Day".  Wellington is the capital city of New Zealand, even though it's not as big as Auckland.

It does hang straight and lie flat - it's the velcro making it crooked in this photo.

Anne and I decided that we would recreate the view in the school hall when our guild does our show and tell.  That is our idea of a "Capital Day".

We each made some tiny mini quilts and then we hung them on a clothes line with tiny wooden pegs. Yes, I English Paper Pieced those tiny hexagons and then hand quilted it.  It was so cute!

Anne quilted the background, and I had the job of stitching the lettering at the top.

The red bear paw block is on our guild's logo so it had special significance.

Here's what the hall looks like when we have our guild meeting. See where we got our inspiration from!

Friday 12 October 2018

Spring time

It's Spring time in Wellington and I enjoyed a lovely walk at Oriental Bay this week.  We're very lucky to have a sheltered beach within walking distance of Wellington city. There's no surf at Oriental Bay because it's within the harbour, but it's a very popular with swimmers and families in the summer.

  There are lots of lovely Spring flowers in my garden.


Vireya rhododendron or Azelea 


Flowering Cherry tree

My mum sent me a photo of the wisteria growing on her fence.  It looks gorgeous too.


All these flowers remind me of the wool felt applique cushions I made from Wendy Williams book - Wild Blooms and Colorful Creatures. 

I know a lot of you are preparing for winter, but we are looking forward to longer days and lots of outdoor living.  It's almost time to dust off the BBQ again.