Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Paper Piecing Fat Quarter Style (and a sew-along?)

You know I just joined Pinterest about two weeks ago?  Well in that time I have noticed a trend - I love paper pieced projects.  I've even created a PP board and have become obsessed with pinning every PP project I come across, I'm even hunting them down!  Here's a selection from my Flickr Favourites:

1. Skating on Frog Pond, Fat Quarterly Issue 8, 2. Christmas Sweet Jar for Melinda, 3. Vespa scooter PP quilt block (2), 4. PTS6, 5. Sewing Machine Block for Amisha, 6. Tardis zip case, 7. vintage camper, 8. Ringo Pie Design Classic Quant Mini- for Lynne, 9. Vintage Film canister for Amy- Ringo Pie, 10. Quilts on a line for Corey, 11. Untitled, 12. Paper Pieced Union Jack, 13. New York Beauty #2

So did you also know that the latest issue of Fat Quarterly is running a special on paper piecing!!  I grabbed myself a copy this morning but now that I have the issue in my hot little hands (ie on my desktop), I thought that I need a little kick-in-the-butt to actually get around to making the projects (and there are some really great ones including those ice-skates above, a teapot cosy, pillows, potholder, mini quilts and more).  Working through all these projects is a great way to learn these techniques (English Paper Piecing, Freezer Paper Piecing and Foundation Paper Piecing).  I really want to learn these techniques because these blocks are just so cute!

So do you think it would be fun to have a little sew-a-long paper piecing style?  I've never really been part of a SAL/QAL yet, I follow them and I always put off joining because I don't have the right fabric, don't want the commitment, too much stuff going on.... yada, yada, yada.   (Let alone actually host one!!!)  Yikes, what am I saying here?  Of course, there needs to be interest in joining along?  I think a support group is what I need to stay focussed.  I'm thinking something along the lines of the FWQAL where we share our finished projects on our blogs and in a Flickr group and pace it out so that it's not too much commitment?  How about leaving me a comment and if there's interest then I'll get organising.

EDITED TO ADD:  More details on the SAL can be found by clicking here.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Sunday at the Zoo

We headed off to the zoo yesterday to get a last visit in before our Zoo Friends passes expired today.  The weather was warm and humid as Sydney can be.  Taking photos is not a reflex for me which is why there are not many photos.  Oops!

We tried to see the Tiger cubs but there was a long queue and it was hot.  We were tired and the cubs were nearly due for their afternoon tea... so we ditched that idea and headed down to the Sky Safari which is free and definitely much better than walking back up the hill to the top entrance.  If you ever visit Sydney, Taronga Zoo is a must see not only for the animals but for the glorious views of Sydney harbour.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Good. Hair. Day.

Since having kids my haircuts have been few and far between.  Partly due to having to organise a haircut when someone can look after the kids, partly due to money (a good hairdresser is not cheap) and partly due to said good hairdresser being very hard to get an appointment with (we go back a long, long way and he looks after me though and always finds me something when I'm desperate).  Today was one of those days, my hair had been getting longer and longer and less flattering.  I've been wearing it in a ponytail for the last few weeks - bad. hair. every. day!

Here's my new do, I'm so in love with it.  The kids love it too and the husband is stoked.  No longer looking so frumpy.  2012 is going to be about getting ME back.  Putting a priority on myself again (shhh, not to mention there's a significant birthday looming).

* I just want to wipe that smudge off the mirror right in front of my eye!!
** No you can't have my hairdresser's number - I don't want to make it any harder to get an appointment

Friday, January 20, 2012

do.Good Stitches - January

About 6 months ago I put my name down on a application to join do.Good Stitches managed by Rachel of Stitched in Colour.  It took a while but about two months ago I got placed into the Care Circle (you might have noticed the button I put on my sidebar when I found out).  I was really excited to be involved with a bee since I have never done anything like it before.  The way this bee works is there ten of us, five Stitchers (who make 2 blocks per month) and five Quilters (who make 2 blocks per month, but twice a year they get to choose a block/quilt design, and make the quilt from all the blocks).  I was pretty bold because I put my name down to be a Quilter.  My turn is already coming up in February!

Anyway, for the January bee we had to make a red and aqua starflower block.  Here are mine, ready to post to Karen in Nthn Ireland (oh yeah, forgot to mention we are an international group).

DS Quilts & Central Park

DS Quilts & Erin Michael

So, how about telling me about your experience of quilting bees?  What advice have you got for me?

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Mouthy Stitches Swap

Via Flickr:
I tried really hard but No.20 would just not appear in the mosaic. You can still click on the link though.

1. Quilts on a line for Corey, 2. a is for apple pencil pouch, 3. pouch for pretty {little} pouch swap, 4. Fabric pouch, 5. DSC09176, 6. KOMBI LOVE, 7. IMG_8004, 8. Ringo Pie Design Classic Quant Mini- for Lynne, 9. Equalizer Quilt - Habitat Challenge, 10. Hexagons, 11. Pretty little pouch swap finished - front, 12. pretty {little} pouch., 13. PLPS - Finally Received!!! YEAHHHH, 14. A handbag for 2012, 15. Japan Fabrics - News, 16. Grey Linen Pouch Rainy days, 17. Retro Flowers Quilt, 18. Hexagon Pouch, 19. PLPS Crosses pouch inside, 20. Orange Zip Bags

Created with fd's Flickr Toys

I've joined my first Swap. We'll be making our secret partner a zipped pouch and adding a FQ worth of fabric. This swap group is already having a party over on Flickr, the Swap Mamas only wanted you to join if you agreed to be verbal on Flickr and I'm pleased to report that everyone is fulfilling that request!

Here is my inspiration mosaic to help my swap partner get an idea of what sort of pouch I would like. So far this has been fun, I can't wait to find out who my partner is so that I can start cyber-stalking them!

Monday, January 16, 2012

Stash and Treasure Recyclers Market

My local town hall hosted the Stash and Treasure Market yesterday.  They held one a few months ago which I didn't make it to so I was kind of curious to check it out this time.  When Amy from Badskirt posted that she was going to have a table there and I knew I had to get there smack bang on 9am. I just love Amy's taste and wanted to make sure I had the pick of her stash.  (Amy and I have been crafting friends for a while now since we both used to go to the Inner West branch of The Craftroom, which is unfortunately not meeting anymore.)

Amy didn't disappoint, in my half-asleep-vague-state (making a decision was really hard) I bought three Oliver+S patterns that had been on the wanties list for quite a while, plus these two bundles of fabric.  Amy had a lot of great bundles I would've been happy to take home with me, but quite a few of them had at least one fabric I already own in them plus I really need some yellow for the stash.

L-R: Birthday Party Dress; Sunday Brunch Jacket and A-Line Skirt;
2+2 Blouse and Pleated Skirt Pattern

L-R: Early Bird, Cosmo Cricket; D's Selection; ??; Circa 50, Birch

L-R: D's Selection by Fumika Oishi & Kei Honeycomb

I've noticed I'm really drawn to red right now - it started with adding some red Xmas decorations to our tree (it has been white and silver for about 7 years), I bought a pair of chunky red beads on Xmas Eve that I have been wearing with just about everything and have had the wanties for a red handbag for quite a while.

Glide, Alexander Henry
Midwest Modern?, Amy Butler; Alex Henry; ??; Japanese

I also found 2 FQs of these gorgeous swimming ladies, the Amy Butler (love that particular pink with yellow) and two prints (one is definitely Made in Japan).  Plus some cute vintage buttons for 50c each which might come in handy.  The funny thing is when I went back to Amy at the end to show her my haul, she pointed out that all the fabrics co-ordinated really well.  I hadn't even been thinking about that!

It was quite a small market, there were people selling leather, lace, fabric, notions, vintage bric-a-brac.  I hear the tables are not too expensive so if you need to clear out the stash, this might not be a bad option.

Links to Stash and Treasure Recyclers MarketBadskirt, The Craftroom, Oliver+S.

Friday, January 13, 2012

New fabric arrival

This week has seriously flown by!  I thought I'd have heaps of time for sewing and blogging with kids at preschool, husband at work.... um, no.  I spent most of that time just getting through my Google Reader.  I honestly don't know where people have the time for it all including Pinterest (I have managed to stay away, except when it first started as I know that it will end up wasting so much of my time but everyone is talking about it, I can hear it beckoning... I know it will be a matter of time until I'm hooked).  

Here's some fabric I bought for the stash.  I really love the intense colours and these sketchy fabrics right now (the turquoise and coral are a great combination).

Sketch Bundle by Timeless Treasures

This Heirloom bundle of FQs are being auditioned for the back of my Habitat quilt.  The two outside are my favourites but I won't make a decision until the top is complete.

Joel Dewberry Heirloom

A better representation of the colours in this fabric

Fabrics purchased from Five Monkey Fabrics.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Somebody That I Used to Know

How's your weekend going?  I spent nearly all of yesterday sorting through make-up and toiletries since we did some repair work to our bathroom vanity this week (and since I'm a Make up Artist there was a lot to go through).  Unfortunately, the basin is still leaking but we're hoping that by being more vigilant with emptying out water, then the vanity can function for a bit longer until we have the finances to renovate the bathroom.  (I did look into replacing the vanity but it's quite a large size - 1600mm wide which is non-standard and therefore $$$).  Appreciate any advice if anyone knows of a way to waterproof the underside of an acrylic basin, it seems to be leaking where the drain meets the pipe?

In other news, and relating back to the title of this post, I came across this clip yesterday and I have replayed it so many times.  I do love this song and this cover version is almost better than the original!!  (I had a sneak peak at the original yesterday, funnily it reminded me of a quilt pattern and also doing work experience on a pilot for Young Lions where I had to bodypaint the extras!)  Check this out if you have a few mins, I'm sure you will love it as much as I do.

Found via Pottymouthmama

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

2011 in Review

1. Central Park Baby Quilt, 2. Sunglasses Pouches, 3. Name Tag, 4. Infinity Scarf, 5. Robot Softie, 6. Nikki Bag, 7. Market Bag, 8. Winter Bonnet 1, 9. Disappearing Ninepatch Baby Quilt, 10. Infinity Scarf, 11. Winter Bonnet 2, 12. Ooshka Babushka, 13. Baby Boy Bonnet, 14. Monogram Pillow, 15. Ripple Blanket, 16. Sunglasses Pouch Prototype, 17. Summer Bonnet 1, 18. Summer Bonnet 2, 19. Luke Skywalker Utility Belt, 20. Santa Sacks

I thought I would join in the fun of looking back at my sewing projects for 2011.  Since this is my first full year of sewing as a hobby I wanted to see what I achieved.  I don't think I did too bad, there were about 3 months when I didn't even touch my sewing machine.  I hope to be a bit better organised next year and accomplish more off my to do list (more quilts).  I cheated a little and added my ripple blanket to this collage even though it's still a WIP.

Mosaic created with fd's Flickr Toys (thanks Melanie for the tip)