Wednesday, 30 November 2016

The 40 D'oiley

Phew! Breathing a sigh of relief that the 40th birthday d'oiley is finished.

I think I can safely say that my penchant for very fine crochet has come and gone. I think I will save it for the edging on fine linen tablecloths now - and I have already made two of those.

I am tempted to pin the d'oiley out and paint on spray starch to "block" it, but I am posting it to the U.K. and I don't think my gf will even notice if it's a little crinkly.

Besides, I like the way it feels soft.

Ecru and white in size 20 crochet cotton.

It's getting close to Christmas. Before then I would like to make a Christmas stocking, bind two quilts, and make some oven mitts - something I would do in one week when I wasn't a Mum! ;)

Monday, 28 November 2016

Observations and ramblings

There are a lot of things a busy Mum of young children misses out on in terms of time for herself and her hobbies.
Yes, it's been difficult to get the sewing machine out. I thought about it tonight at about 5pm.

"Ooh", I thought, "I could get the sewing machine out after the children are in bed, set it up outside (only space possible at the moment), and crack on with the Santa stocking for the youngest member of the family"....

Um... no. When 7:55pm came, I decided by the time I cleared and cleaned a space to sew and cut and spray and baste, there would be 45 minutes to sew and then it would be time to pack up, and that would be a late night! Woah there Nelly!

So how do people do it? And are they doing it?

I know my blog posts have suffered, but after having a look in the last week, I see that a whole lot of blogs I used to follow and read avidly, now show their last posts as 1 year ago, 2 years ago. Surely not everyone in the world had a baby in the last year.

Then I thought about it again. Blogging is largely a thing where we write, read and post while sitting at a computer desk (really, I would never type this many words on the phone). People don't have to sit at a computer desk anymore to see if they have an email (Yes!! Woohoo! Somebody wrote to me!), now they can use the internet on their phone if they want to (dang it, the phone bill is due). We are not sitting down to blog or read as we used to do. We are looking at our phones in the doctors waiting room, on the bus, eating our lunch at work or over a coffee. And we are not looking to see if anyone sent us an email.

What are we doing? It seems the new trends are: Pinning links on pinterest; Show and telling on Instagram; and raving about the latest fabric releases on Twitter. None of which have snagged me. However, facebook has fan groups (fabric designers, fabric ranges, shops, styles of quilts), and message groups, and show and tell pages, and I do get to see some inspiring works on there.

When I think about it, this really is my quilting journal, which I choose to share,  because I have been inspired by sooo many others' quilts and quilting journies, that I wanted to pay it forward and inspire others too. It is also a way of easily keeping a record of when a project was started and finished. What an easy way to archive the quilts I have made in my life by printing out a year at a time into a hard book.

There are quilts I made and gave away, and never kept a photo of, after promises by the recipients of a lovely pic with the baby when it was born. I have no idea how many quilts I made, let alone what they looked like. I was always whipping up a baby quilt and giving it away. Another reason for writing my blog - to keep a record for my ancestors and for recipients of quilts I have made. You can always find me online. Especially as I became interested in antique quilts, and if there was no label on the quilt, we didn't know its story. Always label your quilts.

Lastly, hellooo and a big wave to my quilting girlfriends all over who can keep up with my sewing, here on this blog, even if we don't keep up on the phone very often. Big Love to you all. xoxoxoxo

Saturday, 26 November 2016

Almost a year's work

It was last December I started planning a special 40th birthday gift for my Soul Twin who lives in the U.K.

We were going to be on the road for about 6 weeks, and as a passenger I would be able to take something small to work on.

Having decided applique would be too much to organise before we left, and stitchery wouldn't be special enough, I took a few 1970s vintage patterns and some crochet cotton along for the ride.

The first piece I started ended up being too difficult to follow as a pattern, and I would have to do hours and hours of crochet before finding that I might have made an error.


I really needed to have the gift posted yesterday, but as you can see I am still working on it.

In the last few days I made 50 of these little flowers in white, to contrast with the main part, and started to attach them to the d'oiley.

I found these lovely, lovely needles at my local quilt shop.

The packaging is lovely - it looks like fimo flowers, and it's useful. The needles cannot be accessed from the jar by my 15 month old toddler who is FINDing everything!

These particular ones are for hand quilting with perle thread, so the eye of the needle was perfect for hand stitching the little flowers onto the d'oiley and weaving in the thread ends (ohhh! the ends! Will they end?)

Best get back to the actual stitching, the d'oiley needs to head off on Monday.