Please remember that any photos, images or text on this blog remain my property, but if you wish to use any that you see, feel free to contact me for permission. Thank you for respecting my request and enjoy your visit.......Joy

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

A great day of fun at The Patchwork Teahouse

The CBD group of Scquilters had their annual Christmas luncheon at The Patchwork Teahouse in Warburton - just outside of Melbourne in The Dandenong Ranges. An absolutely delightful place to have lunch and a coffee surrounded by quilts and the other goodies in the shop.

Some random shots of the girls enjoying the lunch surrounded by the quilts and other magical stuff.

Shirley and Fran bought along some Show and Tell -
First, we have Fran with her lovely quilt.
The embroideries on Fran's quilt were a Block of the Month from Willowberry Designs which she started as a take-along project in 2010 and finished it October 2014.

The next 3 quilts are Shirley's, 

This quilt with hearts, was actually designed by Fran and was a mystery quilt for her Scquilters' Mystery Group.  It is MQ No. 13. and is an original design by Fran Cox.
Finally, another lovely quilt by Shirley - unfortunately there was a fourth - but my camera must have had a couple of little gremlins in it when I took the photo - only half of it came out.  My apologies Shirley.

Sunday, November 2, 2014

A visit to Quilts In the Barn

A couple of weeks ago I and a couple of friends (Jenni S and LeeAllan) visited 'Quilts In The Barn' in outer Melbourne where they were having their annual show of Quilts in the Barn'.  This year's show the emphasis was on reproduction and older quilts, with some beautiful vintage ones which had been sent over from the USA by Mary Koval. Mary was supposed to be there in person, but unfortunately her health dictated that she stay home.

Patty Harants and Brenda Papadakis were there with their amazing quilts, plus they also gave lessons and lectures.  Alas, I didn't get the opportunity to attend either of these events.  But they were both very generous with their time and spoke with everyone who was able to 'get a word in'.....

Here are just a few of the amazing quilts hanging in 'the Barn'.  Hope you enjoy seeing them.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Winners are Grinners

And I am grinning........

A couple of weeks ago I entered a prize draw on Maggie Grey's Workshop on the Web Facebook page.  A few days later I received an email telling me I had won one of the prizes - a book by Elizabeth Barton!

Yesterday the book arrived in the mail (all the way from England).  I am absolutely thrilled with it.  At first I wasn't sure if I could use this particular book.  But after looking through it last night there are heaps of ideas and exercises in the book that I could relate to and put into some of my quilts.  Even though a lot of the photos etc are a tad 'arty' the actual ideas and the way of looking at things around you, relate to all types of art and craft whether you are a traditional crafter or an free form artist.

If you would like to know more about Maggie and her Workshop on the Web click here.  

Monday, September 29, 2014

It's nearly October already....

Time does fly.........

October is only a few days away and  I've realised I haven't posted anything since August....Dear me, I have been slack...

Do you ever feel you have lost your mojo for a while?  I did, but hopefully all is coming back gradually.

I finished sewing the top of my 'Blue Rhapsody' quilt - you know the one with all those blue and brown hexagons and now have it tacked ready for quilting.

My apologies for the clarity of the photo but the sun was shining right in the window and I didn't realise it till posting the photo.  The quilt is now at the machine and I have started quilting it.

I have also been very busy with hand sewing.  After all the years sitting at my machine I am really loving hand sewing and of course hexagons. (What else...)

This quilt started off being a copy of Martha Washington's Flower Garden in which all the flowers are shaped as diamonds, not the traditional flower shapes.

After sewing quite a few of these together - see some of my previous posts labelled 'hexagons' - I was playing around with them (as one does...) and I really liked what I saw when the diamonds were placed into a star pattern with a 'flower' in the middle.

This is now what I have decided to do with these diamond hexagons. Here are two that I have finished sewing.  What do you think?

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Lots of work done at Retreat...

Not very much from myself but a lot of others were in the sewing mode!!!

This first one was made by Heather - Aussie animals foundation pieced from a book by Margaret Rolfe.

This quilt is a hand-pieced project from Annie

Judy's motor bike quilt for her father.

Partially pieced quilt by Lisa, from a Birthday Block exchange at Regent St quilts.

And this last photo is not a quilt as you can see, but beautifully painted sneakers that Jeann worked on. We all wanted a pair....Beautiful work Jeann.
I worked on my blue and brown hexagons and nearly finished appliqueing them onto the borders.  As soon a I have finished, hopefully this week, I will post a pic for you.

I hope you all enjoyed these photos - there were heaps more but as the lighting in the room at the time of Show and Tell was not the best some didn't come out as clear as I would have liked.  But a great weekend and looking forward to next year.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014


At last some progress has been made on a couple of languishing Phd's (Projects have done...) (I love saying I'm working on my Phd....)

It takes the thought of a quilting retreat/camp coming up this weekend to get a move-on.  Whoever thought of going to a retreat and not having something to work on!

Remember the blue and brown hexagon quilt I had started?  Well now I have completed the applique borders and them tacked them down to the hexagons in readiness to applique them on. The outer hexagon border is also completed, but I haven't tacked it down. That is happening later today. Once completed then all I have to do is to add a narrow border, sandwich with batting and backing, quilt, then put the binding on.  No big deal!  I can do this!  Although I won't be quilting it this weekend, but at least I will have it to that stage.
I have also completed some of my diamond hexagons for the Martha Washington quilt I am replicating.  Not in her colours as it is too hard to match up, but using what materials I have in my stash.  IF, and I mean IF, I have completed what I plan to do this weekend, I will work on some more of these diamonds.  I am loving them. They are 5/8" hexagons, not quite 1/2" but still small.  I love working with small pieces and love handwork.   I find it very therapeutic.

I guess this comes from all the stitching - embroidery; cross stitch and tapestries I used to do before I found quilting.  If I have the time I prefer to hand quilt rather than machine quilt.

These are some of the single rounds awaiting their final round.

And here are some with their final round applied.

No more rounds - they need to have the neutral hexagons in between.  For these I'm using a mixture of creams, beige, cream on cream, and some very very light patterns on cream.

When sewn together they will form larger diamond shapes, which also form a 'star' so you get a secondary pattern in your quilt.

Till next update, enjoy your weekend - are any of you planning on retreating this year.  I would love to know where/what you are planning with friends.

Take care,

Sunday, July 13, 2014

A great day

is always spent with family.  Today happens to be my birthday.  I just had to share a photo of the best Birthday Cake ever.  Made with help from Mummy, but completed decorated by Jorja (7) and Fraser (2). Jorja chose the green icing and made the flowers from marshmallows which were sprinkled with sparkles and coloured jelly crystals.  Apparently Fraser ate more than he put on the cake....but he is only 2.
I have been a bit slack again posting but have been very busy here,but I will let you know what as been happening here in Lara very soon.  Just need to get a few other important jobs done.  
The cake which was chocolate was delicious, albeit the icing very sweet.......

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Stage 1 - Starting the garden

Remember when I first moved and the lovely blank canvas I had for my garden.  Well I have cleaned it up, removed the mulch and dug it all over.  Added some compost that came with me from my worm farm. Sadly the worm farm has now found a new home.

First things first - I planted out the herbs that I bought with me, my quite large Rosemary (which by the way has been trimmed);  my oregano, just in front of the Rosemary, that is just starting to show new growth;  chives on the right - they transplant well; lemon thyme, left of the oregano (I prefer this to ordinary garden thyme).  This one has really pretty little flowers when blooming.

Lastly my perpetual Basil, behind the oregano an thyme..  The Bay Tree stays in the large tub (not shown here).

You can also see the small lime tree and in front of it sitting on the small wooden block is my sun dial and in the second photo it is showing the correct time (that is the time I took the photo last week.... You find where direct north is on a map of your street (Google is great for this) face the dial directly north. Then on the first day that sunlight is shining, at exactly 12.00 noon you adjust the arrow so there is NO shadow.  If you go out earlier or later and do your adjustments, the time will always be out by that 1/2 hr or so.  When I took this photo it was 11.35am.

Of course the time is only correct when the sun is out - no shadows and you can't tell the correct time.

Ah, I hear what you're saying - what happens when Daylight Savings begins or ends.....when you change your clocks inside the house you change the dial outside - at the first day when the sun is shining at 12.00 noon.

Mr Garden Gnome is not forgotten - he is sitting on one of the round posts that are attached to the skirting board along the garden bed.  He loves it there - a bit of sun to keep warm and he is doing a marvellous job of looking after my plants.  And he has to take special care of my lemon tree.

Next is the planting out of some of the cuttings and pots I bought with me.  Still working on it.  Will post more photos when finished.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Sewing with Friends... always a lovely thing to do.  On the fourth Thursday of the month a small group of lovely ladies who belong to Scquilters (Southern Cross Quilters - an on-line group of Australian and ex-pats (ie Aussies who live overseas) that I belong to..) meet in the City (Melbourne) for a chat, lunch and a bit of sewing.

They are the 'CBD' group, and I am lucky to have been asked to join them.  There are a number of these small groups around Australia with members all belonging to Scquilters, who meet on a regular basis.  It's great to meet and put a face to a name that you usually only get to know on-line.

At a recent meeting my friend Jenni S showed her latest completed quilt.  Absolutely beautiful and she hand pieced and appliqued the entire quilt.  With her permission I can also show you :
Apologies for cutting a corner off but I only had my phone with me that day.  But I am sure you can see the amount of work that has gone into this quilt.  By the way - she also hand-quilted it!!

Sunday, May 25, 2014

AQC - a tad late but here is my visit to AQC

Well I've finally made it. After quite a few hiccups changing computers - I'm now in the 'really techosphere' world (not sure if that is really a word, but sounds good...) - I have upgraded my ageing desk top (c2007) to a new laptop with Windows 8.1.  Lots of trial and error happening, ie email wouldn't work; blog was not always there, etc; a few trips back and forth to the computer people where I purchased it and we are now up and running.

A few weeks ago the Australian Quilt Convention was held in Melbourne.  A thoroughly enjoyable day - ran into a number of people I know.  Sat at a table for lunch with 3 other girls who came all the way from Brisbane, Qld.  We had a lovely chat and then went on our separate ways.

AQC is held in the beautiful heritage listed Royal Exhibition Buildings located in the Fitzroy Gardens, Melbourne, Vic. Just a very short tram ride from the city centre. The building lends itself wonderfully for an exhibition of this type - on a sunny day natural light comes in from the windows near the roof and the floor plan which resembles a cross (one long wide passage with two offshoots either side) allows plenty of room for the stallholders and exhibitors also allowing for plenty of space for the quilts.

These two photos are of the outside of the building - you can see from the photo on the left how the 'cross' shape looks from the side view.  The photo on the right is the front view.

The following are a couple of photos of the inside of the building showing some of the murals on the large columns.  It is truly a stunning venue for a quilt exhibition.

The quilts were stunning but as I don't have permission from the makers I can't show them here, re copyright issues.

I hadn't planned on purchasing very much (??) as I am still trying to sort out my stuff from the house move.  Well, add good intentions got thrown out the window.  There were a couple of stalls having huge I need to say any more...... (ps I'm not showing...... maybe at a later date...)

I did purchase this lovely bag from the Kopanang Project.  This is a group of lovely ladies from a village in South Africa who with the help of some very generous people, are being taught to be self-sufficient.  It is beautifully hand embroidered and all the money goes back to the village and put towards the education of the girls, many of whom have been impacted by HIV/Aids in their society.  You can read more about this project, on the link above.

 Oops, sorry it's sideways.

This is the front of the bag and the one below is the back.
Beautiful colours aren't they?

Both sides are covered with the embroidery.