Thursday, 21 May 2009

A giveaway not to miss!

When I saw this fantastic giveaway over at Jet Designs I knew I just HAD to be in it. You can win a book and two patterns (in Australia) or just the patterns if you're an international blogger. All you have to do is check out her store, pick your faves, comment on her blog and link it on yours. Easy! I have my name down for a contemporary quilting book and some fun Amy Butler Patterns. So cool. Fingers crossed tightly now...

Talking of giveaways, I am a bad, bad blogger. My 100th post past ages ago, as did my blogiversary. The blogiversary fell both times when my life was fairly hectic and I was unable to host a giveaway. So I have decided to do an unblogiversary giveaway instead! But before I do, I will have to make a couple of things especially for the occasion otherwise I will feel a tad pressured to make something after the event. So in the next few weeks I will get crafty and put three handcrafted items up for grabs. I just have to have a think about what sorts of things would make good giveaways. At this stage they will be baby/toddler related gifts, perhaps a baby block, a pair of baby shoes or a softie. If you have any other suggestions for things that are quick to make and fun to receive feel free to drop me a hint, and then keep your eyes peeled for my own giveaway.

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

Refreshed, graduated, ready to sew!

We arrived home from the US on Saturday lunch time, and while I was quite happy to return with a bag full of fabric and a freshly serviced sewing machine, I was equally delighted to find to special parcels sitting on the dining table.

The first one was a very generous gift from AJ, who made it in appreciation for the nappy bag pattern and newborn clothes I sent her in anticipation of the birth of her very special and much awaited "Russell". A fantastic nappy stacker to make accessing those nappies a lot easier. Currently I pull them out of the top drawer as I did for Austin, but since Madelyn has more fitteds than pockets, they are a lot bulkier and jam up the drawer when they are all washed and in the right place. The nappy stacker was made especially to go with this quilt from my EB Quilters friends, which AJ also contributed. The pic here is sans nappies as we are running a little low on supply now because I didn't get a chance to make as many mediums before we left as I would have liked and her legs seem to have tripled in diameter so that the few smalls (ie. the magicalls and my homemade aio's) that still fitted when we left are now ready to sell off to new owners. With all the unpacking washing to do, nappies have had to wait and are therefore all hanging on the line.

The second parcel was an adorable little quilt from Eden - my quilter for the flickr DQS6. Since I am not allowed to put quilts on the walls (at least until I get a sewing room again which will be several years down the track when we are ready to rebuild or rennovate), I was hoping for something Madelyn can use with her dolls as she grows older, but also something that I could pinch back when my sewing room came along so that I could hang in front of my desk. This little beauty is perfect for both, so pretty and classic looking with a contemporary feel to the composition and placement of circles. If you look closely you can see the beautiful fabrics she chose for the circles, but from a distance they blend nicely. And of course I love a wrinkly stippled quilt and admire anyone who can do it because I can't!

And to make the return even more enjoyable I had the latest issue of Ottobre Design waiting for me to peruse! What more could a girl want? I was almost tempted to trace something out and get started last night after I managed to hold the little ones up until 7pm (they had been droppping like flies the two previous afternoons and then thinking 3am was a good time to start the day - at least we could show Austin that the sun wasn't up yet so he laid quietly in bed but it didn't quite work for Madelyn!) Instead I decided I was too tired to trace and would probably stuff it up so made a dalmation all in one nappy that I cut out before we left. (Check out Miss parachuter! She is super strong in the abs now and does tummy crunches ALL the time as she hates to lay down).

Oh and I nearly forgot, here is the DQS6 quilt I made, and sent to John, who was also one of the swap mamas (& papa!) who did an awesome job making sure the swap ran smoothly and everyone got a quilt. Having never sewn for a bloke before, I was a little overwhelmed at first, but John left several hints on his blog and in flickr. I soon learned that he was a fan of Tula Pink fabrics, hourglass quilts, solid fabric in quilts, embroidery and loved the lime/charcoal colour scheme. With this information I tossed my original ideas and hunted down fabric. When I saw the Neptune range by Tula Pink, with it's rich lime, charcoal, seaspray and coral colours I just KNEW it was the fabric for John. I kind of let the quilt make itself, the mermaid springing to mind when the word Neptune conjured up images of old wooden ships with mermaids carved on the front. Unfortunately the quilt is small so those hourglasses are tiny. I normally love tiny blocks on little quilts but was a bit sad about cutting into those charms as it obscures the turtles and fish and sea creatures that you would notice on bigger pieces. It took a long time to tie in all those ends and get to stitching the binding down so this little quilt came on tour with me to LA, MI,NY and then LA again before it got sent to John's place. The plan was to finish it in those first few nights of sitting in the hotel while the kids slept, but one of those kids (the bigger one) decided it was not bed time, probably mucked around by the time difference and wouldn't sleep. It was affecting his behaviour and making it hard to drag him out of bed in time for breakfast so we did the only thing that worked which was to sit in silence and darkness in our shared hotel room until he finally nodded off, which isn't a very good environment for stitching binding down. So a little late, but better than never, I give you "Jewel of the Sea":