Sunday, December 30, 2012

Checkered chickens completed.

Its so lovely having the week of between Christmas and New Years off.  I have been able to do lots of my favourite things, like cooking, walking on the beach and of course sewing.

Yesterday afternoon DH and I settled in to watch a DVD and I stitched the binding on the chickens quilt whilst watching it.  We then went out last night to watch a band play that we used to watch in the 80's.  DH went to school with the lead singer and drummer, and they reformed for one show only.

It was a lot of fun and they played songs that I had not heard in 20 years.  Most of the crowd were old school friends and the news of the band playing was from word of mouth and good ole facebook.

Anyhow, back to the chicken quilt, here it is, simple as last shown with the small red gingham check for the binding and backed in a check fabric to tie in with the front of the quilt.  I quilted it in all over stipple, but not over the chooks.  Then I stitched around each of the chooks. 

Now onto my next UFO - a baby quilt for DD#3 who is expecting a little boy in Feb who will be Grand baby #7 for us. (Grand son #5)

This quilt  needs the borders done, and then pinned and quilted. 

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Getting stuck into it.

In the aftermath of Christmas I enjoyed a day relaxing.  My house desperately needs a vacuum after having about 30+ people through the day before,  but that can wait.

So what have I done?

Firstly I have allocated the January block swap partners, and changed the look of the blog - new year new background.  Check it out HERE.

Then I tidied up my own blog, I realised that I had old buttons from swap groups long gone, and my Completed 2012 page was only up to July, so I painstakingly brought that up to date.

I have also changed the background.

Then I set to work on my block obligations. Firstly made my two six inch baskets for Mary, then made two 12 inch blocks for my January partners Dawnelle and Tanya.

Then drum roll please........  I made my cushion for my cushion swap.  Here it is, but I am not going to tell you who it is for until she lets me know that it has arrived.

Now I have four quilt tops to turn into quilts.  I doubt I will get through them all, but I will make a start on that now.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Christmas Cooking

Not much sewing (actually none) has happened in the last couple of days as I have been chained to my kitchen

We are hosting the family on Christmas night ( Christmas lunch is at my DD # 3's house - Nicole), but I have all of the rest of the family for tea, something we have done now for about 12 years.

Tea is a simple affair of nibbles and bring a plate to share fare,  I am sharing lots of plates,
The menu is ...
Home made sausage rolls
 And onion tarts, I have also made some little pastry cases to fill with pesto and a cherry tomato but I will fill them before serving so they don't get soggy.
Tomorrow I have to make Thai chicken balls and a rice salad .
There is also a turkey roll that I will precook and serve cold on a bed of crisp lettuce with mixed greens and cranberry salad.  I also have a large ham on the bone to slice.

The sweets are..

For the littlies.
Ginger bread men - of course

and Chocolate dipped shortbread

 For the big kids there is...
Chocolate licorice slice and hazelnut slice (with shortbread base and white choc topping - yum)

As well as chocolate drizzled shortbread trees.  Sheree also made some Apricot balls, but I forgot to photograph them.
I have the base of a jelly slice chilling in the fridge which is the last of the sweet treats.  Fresh fruit is a plenty   There will be some lovely fresh Berenberg Strawberries, we are so lucky in South Australia to have the Berenberg farm here, their world famous jams are served on Qantas flights and in many major hotels all around the world, and we can go there and pick our own strawberries.

I also have some lovely Christmas cherries, and juicy fresh watermelon.

It was 41 degrees Celsius in Adelaide today  - to hot to even step out side for a minute, and with the oven on all day its lucky for us that we have air conditioning.  I should have just popped the shortbread outside and baked it there lol.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Checkered Chickens

I have been motoring my way through the blocks and tonight I sashed them all together.  Thank you for all your feedback, I a pleased that I decided to sash them.

Take a look ....

I guess now looking at it, the chickens stand out better on the check than they do on the chicken print, so if I were going to do another I would have all check backgrounds.  You also cant tell, but the chicken coop is a chicken wire print, and there are little chickens on the fabric in the doorway.

Now the next bit of advise from my design team please. 

Do I need another border ?  I was thinking of one maybe 4 inches in the red and white gingham check that I have used on the chickens crowns.  DH - my chief designer says no, he likes it like it is.

So while I settle down to do the stitchery on the banner (it says chicken coop), I will wait to see what you all think.  I think I will be backing this in a check fabric too.

I made it to spotlight today and picked up a few meters of batting, so now I can get all my flimsy's put together and quilted over my Christmas break.  I think I have about 4 to do.   EEEKK.  

And as you may have guessed, I have named the quilt checkered chickens.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Are you chicken?

For about two years now I have been saving chook fabric.

My first ever quilt was called roosting roosters, and I made this in country fabrics and checks, and it still sits on the sofa in my living room.

Some time after making this I thought about making a chook quilt in chook fabric, and thats when my quest to save as many chook fabrics as I could began.

Finally the quilt has begun.  Here are the first two blocks ( I have not sewn on the button eyes yet), but you can see how cute this will be,

As you can see, the blocks will either be check with a chicken in chicken pattern or a check chook on a chicken fabric, (try saying that fast)

Below is a close up of the yellow one, this cute chook print was a Birthday gift from the lovely Cheryll, of Gone stitchin.  The green check is left over from my first quilt.

All of the chooks have their crowns in red check, and their heads are either in brown check or green check. 
The pattern does not have the blocks sashed, but I am not sure about that, I tend to like sashing between my blocks, what do you think of that?  I would be interested to know.

The centre block will feature a chicken coop,

This will be a project for me over my Christmas holidays.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Cushion swap update

Rolling Star, made by Sue Belleli 2010
Here is the list of the 16 ladies taking part in the 2013 cushion swap -
 stand by to see some amazing creations.
Anna Banks
Maria Wilson
Maria Goodwin
Fiona Robinson
Terry Fisher
Alison Zanchetta
Jeneta Masson
Carmen Johnson
Geri Olsen
Robyn Roberts
Jan Sage
Julieanne Keeler
Pat Converse
Lorraine Parkes
Christine O'Donnell
and me
(Sue Belleli)

Monday, December 10, 2012

Cushion swap - last call

Hello ladies,

We have 14 registrations for the 2013 cushion swap so if you have been toying with the idea of joining in you need to get in touch with me pretty soon to join in on the fun.

I will be closing off registrations on Friday and emailing partners on the following weekend.  You will have 6 weeks to make and send your cushion so oodles of time over the Christmas period. 

Simply pop a comment on this post or send me an email, If you are not a member of QBSA I will need an email to get your postal details etc.

I have 11 days of holidays over the Christmas break, so lots of fun times to be had in my sewing room while I relax.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Mystery BOM progress

Turning on my lap top, and ping, into my inbox popped the next invoice for the Fat quarter shops mystery BOM, where does the month go?

This was a reminder to me to get cracking on block 6, before block 7 arrived in my letterbox, so that's what I have been doing today.

(I did also plant some red and white petunias ready for Christmas).

But block 6 meant the end of row two, so this meant I had to make flying geese borders and join it all on.

Here is how it all looks - lovely.

Next year I am redecorating my bedroom, we are getting plantation shutters in white for the Bay window and  I am repainting my chocolate feature wall to a lovely sky blue. How perfect will this quilt look when its all done.  I am now at the half way mark on the blocks.

I still have the next striped border to do before I can add on blocks 7, 8 and 9, but that can wait till another day as completing them is still three months away

Now back to the sewing room to work on another project as I feel this one is pretty much up to date. 

Did you also notice my blog header had changed, I owed it to candy necklace to feature there as it is my first ever quilt sold.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

My first Etsy sale

OMG, Imagine my surprise when I arrived home from work tonight, logged on to my email to catch up on the goss and saw that I had sold a quilt on Etsy.

The quilt that was sold is this one....

I really enjoyed making this quilt and am thinking of making a version in yellows and oranges.  Its on my endless to do list.  The purchaser is in New York so it has a way to travel but first they would like me to put a hanging sleeve on it for them to display on their wall.  Imagine that, one of my quilts will be hanging on someones wall in New York.

Very exciting,

Well that's all for me, this week I have been catching up on my block swap commitment's and have also finished the flimsy top for my new (yet to be born) grand baby.  I still have the borders to add on, but need to purchase some more batting to complete that one.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Look what my hubby found

Now my DH is not one for bringing home rubbish, or others cast of items, but look what he spotted out on the side of  the street for hard rubbish collection.

Now it needs a good clean up, and the varnish on the oak case is flaking off but I am pretty happy with the find.  I have a couple of weeks off over Christmas so I plan to give this a good clean and maybe I will plug it in and see if it works. 

I saw that it had some serial numbers on it, so I was curious of its age, and found a website that lists all of the production dates based on serial numbers.  My new (old machine) has two numbers one on the base of the machine (you can see it in the top photo- in brass I can date this one to 1941. and that it was made in Scotland. 

Interestingly the serial number on the motor dates it to 1945 and says that it was made in Australia, but reading up on this the website explains that production stopped over the war years, so many machines have two stamps on them, one for when production started and one for when it was completed.  My guess is that the motor was added later, as the war would have made it possible to motorise what may have been a treadle machine in its initial design.

My other lucky find this week was on eBay, I am a bit of a nut for old buttons, button tins and cotton reels, and managed to win the bid on this.

Inside were lots of goodies, old buttons on cards, old glass buttons and metal buttons as well as a few accessories.  I am in heaven.