Friday, 4 December 2020

Gingerbread Flower Shop

 It's December, and I suddenly decided to drop everything and start stitching the Gingerbread Flower Shop by The Victoria Sampler.  



Those of you who have been following my blog for a while will know all about my Gingerbread Village.  


I started making these delightful cottages in 2012.  Each year I bring them out for Christmas and we all enjoy looking at them.  


This time last year I was busy finishing the Gingerbread Retreat Cottage.


And the year before that it was the Gingerbread Needlework Shop.


I do love the Candy Cane Cottage - it's just so sweet (even though applying all those beads was pretty arduous!). 

You can read all about my tips and tricks, plus find links to each of the other cottages, in the Gingerbread Village tab at the top of the page. 



I know I won't finish the Flower Shop before Christmas, but I do like working on Christmas designs in December and January.  This pattern is slightly different to the others because it includes some ribbon work.  I've done a little bit of that before, but I'm not worried because Thea always includes such great instructions and photos.  

I'll leave you with a photo of the Gingerbread House - because that's where it all started for me. 


 

Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  What have you been up to this week? Have you got any Christmas sewing to share?  Feel free to link up a recent blog post below.

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Friday, 27 November 2020

A Wedding Quilt

A few weeks ago we went to a wedding.  Yes, we're lucky in New Zealand and we're allowed to have weddings and dancing.



I decided to make a quilt for the happy couple.  I showed them four different options and asked what colours they like.  They chose the Donuts quilt designed by Amanda Jean Nyberg from her book No Scraps left Behind.  You may know Amanda Jean from her long running blog Crazy Mom Quilts




As for colours - it didn't really matter because the bride and groom had chosen a pattern with lots of colours in it.  So I looked in my stash and found plenty of colourful fabrics with large motifs. 






You'll see that I modifed the layout to make this quilt square.  I also added a border with some of Jen Kingwell's Lollies fabrics.  I'd seen the Lollies used as a border on a quilt at Amitie Textiles, and thought this would be a good time to use some of the strips that I had.   


I used a lot of different fabrics in this quilt.  The large blocks meant that I could use some my favourite fabrics with large motifs.  


I pieced the back from my stash!!! There are so many beauties in here.  I particularly like the yoga girls, but there really is something for everyone on the back.  



I had this Donuts quilt quilted by Rayna Clinton of Tui Song Quilting in Wainuiomata.  Rayna did a great job and I was really happy with her quilting.  

The happy couple were delighted with the quilt.  I wanted it to be versatile and used, not kept as a museum piece, so they can use it on the bed, on the sofa or even on a picnic.  


Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  What have you been up to this week? Feel free to share a recent blog post below.








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Friday, 20 November 2020

Pandemic Sampler by Long Dog Samplers (3rd post)

It's been quite a while since I showed you my Pandemic Sampler.  

I'm very happy with my progress to date. 



I've managed to stitch my way down to the bottom left hand corner and complete the 2020 date.  I really wanted to stitch that bit before the end of 2020.  I know this sampler won't be finished before the end of the year, but it was important to me to stitch "2020" while we were still in 2020, and in the pandemic.  







I've taken care to cross reference my stitching double check that the placement is correct.  I vowed last time not to stitch out in open areas without cross checks in place, so I stitched down the left hand margin to be sure my counting was correct.  Thankfully I've had minimal mistakes to date.  



Here's the full view again - I've done more than a quarter, but less than half. 

Some people have finished this sampler already!!! But there's no point in me stitching too fast or I'll run out of thread! The wholesaler in NZ doesn't have any more in stock and they're waiting for a new shipment (and I mean it's coming on a ship - not a plane).  Also, I want to enjoy the process and not feel that I'm rushing through it.


I'm using 2 strands of black silk on 28 count linen.

Pandemic pattern is by Long Dog Samplers.  


Now it's time for the Peacock Party. What have you been up to this week? Feel free to link up a recent blog post below. 




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Friday, 13 November 2020

Neptune and the Mermaid

This week I've been hand quilting my Neptune and the Mermaid quilt.  I usually use a hera marker to mark my quilting lines, but this time I've used a blue washout pen because it was hard to see the marked lines on the highly patterned fabrics. 


I always use a hoop when I hand quilt, but I must have taken it off before I took the photo above.  Here it is on another section of the quilt.  

Aurifil 12wt is my favourite thread for hand quilting

I like to experiment with my quilting, so I'm going to try different quilting designs on each block in this quilt.  I want to fill each block out to the edge, and then do a wavy pattern along the sashing (to continue the ocean theme). 


I started this Pieces of the Past quilt in class with Wendy Whellum at the Quilt Symposium in Auckland in October 2019.  It was a hand piecing class, and although I already could hand piece, I wanted more tips and tricks to perfect my techniques.  I feel comfortable with my hand piecing skills now, and I've even made some videos you can watch if you're interested.  There's a tab for Hand Piecing Videos at the top of the page.  

 


Now I'm involved in planning the next Symposium that will be in Lower Hutt, Wellington, in October 2022.  If you 'd like to know more about it, please visit our website and / or follow us on Facebook and Instagram.  You can pre-register now to keep up with the news and be in the priority queue when it comes to booking classes. We've already had over 900 people pre-register in just the first week which is amazing!

What have you been up to this week? Have you registered for Symposium if you live in NZ or Australia? Feel free to link up a recent blog post below.  



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Friday, 6 November 2020

Guy Fawkes Night


Last week was Halloween, this week it's Guy Fawkes.  

Guy Fawkes was a much bigger deal than Halloween in New Zealand when I was growing up.  Most families bought their own fireworks and let off some sky rockets, Catherine wheels, flower pots, and double happys in the back yard.  Sparklers were just for little kids!


Then sales of fireworks to the public became restricted, and city councils started putting on large displays at public venues.  In Wellington they used to put a barge in the harbour and let off massive fireworks for about 15 minutes.  However, because it's Spring here, and the days are getting longer, we had to wait until 9.15pm for it to get really dark before the show could start.  

Sadly it looks like it's going to rain tonight so there won't be many fireworks going off.  


My Ballet with Kaffe quilt from Millefiori Quilts 2 reminds me of fireworks and Guy Fawkes night.  The rosettes look like those giant exploding fireworks you see at major events.  You can read more about how I made this quilt on the tab at the top of the page, or by clicking here.  

I'm getting ready to start hand quilting this quilt soon.  It's been basted for months, but I've been working on other things.  Hopefully it will get an outing in 2021, so I better start hand quilting before Christmas. 

If you're a Kiwi, remember that pre-registration for Symposium 2022 opens tomorrow, Saturday 7 November at 9am.  Pre-registration is important because class allocations are based on pre-registration numbers.  The lower your number, the higher your priority in the class allocations.  Check out www.quiltsymposium2022.co.nz for all the details. 



  Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  What have you been up to this week? Feel free to link up a recent blog post below. 



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Friday, 30 October 2020

Happy Halloween

Happy Halloween.  I hope my gingerbread Haunted House makes you smile. 



It's 8pm on Friday 30 October here, so it's Halloween tomorrow and it's time to bring out my Gingerbread Haunted House again.  

This Gingerbread Haunted House was designed by Thea Dueck of The Victoria Sampler in Canada.  Here's a link to the pattern here.  




I've made most of Thea's Gingerbread Village, and I've got a full page on my blog detailing all my tips and tricks (click here or click on the tab at the top of the page).  The patterns give great instructions for assembly, but it's always useful to hear from someone who has done it themselves, so pop over and read my tips if you're considering making your own Haunted House.  


I always buy the accessories kits when I buy Thea's patterns.  The little buttons that she sources are just so cute, and I know I will never find them in my local shops.  The accessories kits also include all the beautiful silk threads - in just enough quantities to stitch the houses.  


Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  What have you been up to lately? Feel free to link up a recent blog post below. 



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Friday, 23 October 2020

Don't Leaf Me

This week I've been working on "Don't Leaf Me" by Wendy Williams. 



I've had this kit for over a year, but due to many other distractions, I haven't got very far with this one.  I decided that I needed to show it some love this week.  



I've done a lot of wool felt applique in the past, but I haven't done much needle turn applique. There's so many different ways to do needle turn applique! Everyone has a different method.  In the end, I asked one friend to show me her method, and that's what I'm going with.  I won't explain it here yet (because I've only appliqued 2 leaves so far), but this method seems to be working for me.   


Kits for this quilt are available from Material Obsession in Sydney - however, when I bought my kit they had run out of the green Anna Maria Horner print on the borders, so they substituted it for the same print in brown.  However, I love the green colourway, so I managed to track it down, and repurposed the brown into the backing for another quilt.  They also sell just the pattern which you can buy here.  

Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  What have you been up to this week?




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Friday, 16 October 2020

Aotearoa Quilters Aqua Challenge

The Aotearoa Quilters Aqua quilts were on display at the Taupo Exhibition. 

I always enjoy studying how different quilters interpret the theme.  I didn't enter this time, but the next colour is Lime, and I'm definitely going to enter that one.  

Here are some photos from the exhibition.  

The winners

First Place went to Fyvie Murray








These quilts will be travelling around New Zealand, so if they come to a venue near you, please do go and look at them.  There's so much detail packed into a very small space - 12" wide x 16" high.

There's a full gallery on the Aotearoa Quilters website here. but they're so much better in real life. 

Thank you for all your kind messages on my previous two posts.  It really was a thrill to have my quilts recognised and to win prizes.  Some of you are no reply bloggers so I couldn't email you back, but I've read all the comments thank you.

Now it's time for the Peacock Party.  Feel free to link up a recent blog post below.


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