Monday, August 23, 2010

Playing catch up.



After a lot of this...



...and a little bit of this...


...I came home and did a lot of this...



...and truckloads of this...


...and when that was all over we celebrated this...






...and then peace reigned throughout the land until....


...next week.

The End.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Paradise beckons.....

Back in a week! Adios, amigos!

Monday, June 28, 2010

School Hols

We're swimming every day this week - well, when I say "we", I mean the boysies. I am just the driver and cheerleader. Swimming intensives are part of our holiday activity schedule now. They get us out of the house and out of our pj's. We would pretty much spend the whole week lazing about if it wasn't for the swimming. Then I'd get the guilts about not taking them to the Aquarium, or the Museum, or Scienceworks because I can't be arsed with the school holiday crowds. I can now let myself off the hook by getting them out of the house, at least!!

Next week we're off to Cairns! Oh, happy day! Warm weather! Pools! My lovely friend, Lucimar who has two wonderful daughters who will want to play with the boys all week!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Mum's birthday present

It is the year of the quilt when it comes to presents from me, it seems! Having made a quilt for my MIL, I thought it best to make one for my mum too, as her birthday is on Friday.

She's a big fan of red and black and I had bought at my first ever Australian Quilt Convention in Melbourne (2008) a quilt kit featuring vintage kimono silk in a beautiful, vibrant red and black- (it is, co-incidentally, the strip of the local rugby team her and Dad support) I didn't have time to piece it according to the pattern, which wasn't really to my taste anymore, anyway, so just sewed the strips, added a border to the sides and Voila!

 It is wonky. The seams are less than straight. And there are puckers in the quilting.

The silk was hard to stop slipping even though I used lots of pins in the basting.

I don't think she'll mind.


Backed it with black quilter's flannel (never again - picks up every bit of thread and lint possible) and Amy Butler Lotus that I'd been saving but was the only thing even close to the right colour and size in my stash. All to a good cause! Appliqued in red silk.

I really like the way it turned out, even though it is not as perfect as it could be. Bit like me, really!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

When only the best will do...

Only the finest vintage Japanese kimono silk for Madamoiselle Nina's lounging pleasure, if you please...


"That lazy minx of a seamstress is making me a little trifle to rest my beautiful self upon."

(Actually, annoying, middle of the night meowing, always hungry, prone to dreadlocks, not that friendly except to me, furball - the silk trifle if for my gorgeous mother's birthday on Friday - so GEDDOORRRRRFF!!!)

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Pincushion Parade


I've made a few pincushions in the past few weeks.
I quite like them, which surprises me...
.. I always thought they were a bit pointless!!

They're quick to do, cute and I love working with felt. 
Great way to use up your scraps.

This one was supposed to be for my little niece in NZ but in the last minute leaving confusion, the Drake thought both the pear and the elephant were pincushions and the elephant was for my MIL. 
Pretty bloody big and way too cute to be a pincushion, methinks! 
And she only sews a few buttons on and fixes a hem here and there so a bit wasted on her to be honest! 
Luckily she's lovely and the niece has soft toys, aplenty.
It's Eli Elephant from Two Little Banshees.

Now I've entered a pincushion swap and we had to do a flickr mosaic of the ones we like. My god! It's opened up a whole new pincushiony world to me!!!





As inspired as I was I decided to create
 Ludwig the Ladybird! 


He's not quite (translation: millions of miles away from being)
to the Mushroom House standard...but I like 'im!



Friday, May 28, 2010

Goat's Cheese is the new Chocolate!

I made a Chorizo and Vegetable Lasagne last night. I had it for dinner and again for lunch today. My god, it was divine! (If I may say so myself)



I have henceforth decided that Goat's Cheese is my new Chocolate. It's zesty earthy taste sends shivers into my tastebuds. 
I know it's not everyone's cup of tea, but I hate tea, and I LOVE Goat's Cheese. 
I most definitely would dance for it!

Recipe here, if you're innerested... You can easily leave out the Chorizo if you want.

Chorizo and Vegetable Lasagne

1 onion
1 tsp Garlic
1 (large) bottle Passata
Salt and pepper
1 pkt Philadelphia Light
1 small Goat's Cheese
Milk
Pesto
Thinly sliced Chorizo Sausage (as good as you can get)
Thinly sliced Pumpkin, Zucchini, Eggplant
Lasagne sheets - Fresh or Dried

Sweat the onion and garlic then add 3/4 of the bottle of Passata and cook for 5 minutes or so. Season well.

Process the Philly and Goats cheese, then add milk 'til it is a saucy consistency.

Layer the Lasagne - tomato sauce first, lasagne, pumpkin, GC sauce, pesto, lasagne, tom sauce, zucchini, GC sauce, pesto, lasagne, tom sauce, eggplant, GC sauce, pesto, lasagne, chorizo, GC sauce, pesto, rest of Tom sauce - add the last 1/4 of the bottle to the top. 

Make sure it's nice and saucy or it will dry out.

Cook at 180 degrees for about 30 or 40 minutes.

maaaaa!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Just a quickie post to show the end product of the Around the World Quilt that was started this time last year.
I quilted it in one night. A record! It's by no means perfect, but good enough for me! My darning foot that I use for free-motion quilting got damaged just before the end and it was a bit of a mission to complete. I wanted to get it all done to send of to my MIL today.

It's a rainy day here in Melbourne so the photos aren't the best. I'm not much of a photographer anyway, so I shouldn't think it makes that much difference!!!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Swap-a-Rama

I actually started my blog because of a swap.

SummerSadie started the Around the World Quilting Bee nearly this time last year and I must have been surfing the net for ideas when I came across her post. You needed a blog to join in, ideally, so, hesitant as I was (I was always a bit of a hit and miss diary keeper), I thought I'd give it a go.

We made a starter block (mine is the Prints Charming Dove, 2nd row, 3rd place) and sent it on to our designated person, who added their block and sent it on, etc, etc.

I have enjoyed that swap so much, learned lots and met up with lots of lovely bloggers from all over the world. It really opened up the beauty of blog world to me.

I sewed my ATWQB quilt top together this morning. It's travelled a lot of miles!
There are some gorgeous blocks in there - a lot of very talented people contributed.
I'm trying to finish it today so I can send it off to my lovely mother -in -law who has a birthday next Sunday.

More swaps...

Around the World Christmas Block Swap - same theory as above, my Placemat starter block (thought placemats would be of more use to me at Christmas than a quilt!)



Placemat Quilt swap - my lovely placemat from Caryn. It's an straight swap and I blogged about the placemat I made for Caryn a few posts back.
 I can't tell you how much I love this colour combo, which will reign supreme in my new kitchen one day - she must have ESP or something! Now I just have to add to them...

The Beehive God knows how you describe it succinctly...When your designated month arrives, you send your fabric off to the other swappers, they produce fabulosity and send them back to you. Well, the blocks I have received are the HEIGHT of fabulosity.

Here are my contributions to Katrina's quilt. Let's hope she sees some fabulosity!


Happy Sunday everyone! It's an absolutely spectacular day here in Melbourne and I'm inside, blogging and sewing a quilt top! The joys of crafting...

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Yawn....

 I dragged my littlest duck out of his cozy nest this morn so we could journey to the airport as Mr. Luv-a-Duck and big duckling are going on a soujourn to NZ for 4 days. I tried to persuade him that taking a taxi was better for all concerned (well, me...) but the guilt (and the thought of little duck's performance when he found out he's missed seeing the planes) overwhelmed me - the thought of a spiced chai latte at Villa and Hut may have helped too...

We are about to build a house over there. Our Dream House. On a hill, overlooking the sea and islands. We are having issues with the architect, though, hence the visit.

I don't really know if I want to leave Melbourne - whenever that day may be. I've made lots of friends here and I love this place. Kids seem to have so many opportunities here that are harder to come by in NZ. It's a sophisticated, cosmopolitan city. So many reasons to stay.

But man, I want that house. And that view. Every day. 

(Did I mention that there is a crafting room? It's pretty big. And it's all tucked away so it doesn't matter how much shite I leave lying all over the floor. All for me.)

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sew it Together

Foolish creature that I am, I have almost missed the boat on posting about my amazing time at Sew It Together on the weekend! The lovely Sheridan was an organiser extraordinaire and suffice to say, a fantastic time was had by all.

I took narry a photo, so have photographed the sum total of craft work I got done -

50 or so French Knots were all I managed to achieve! Andi made a whole quilt, for pity's sake and this was all I could eke out!!! I think my Form 4 Geography teacher may have got it right when he said in my end of year report...

"This is a surprising result due to the amount of talking that Tanya does. She must learn to control her tongue."


These lovely things were in our goodie bag...such gorgeousness!






Thanks so much  to everyone involved - It was fantastic to meet you all and I had a most excellent time both at the crafting session and the dinner. Definitely be in for next year!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Stitches and Craft Loot and Pics

Went Wednesday with Little Man and two of my Crafty Gym Buddies, Tori and Sniff

Thanks for providing the best entertainment ever, Tania. He spent ages making the sandwiches then "eating" them (so if you had any dribbly, manky ones at the end, you know who to blame).

Bought the Ink and Spindle fabric for this...



and the trim for this...


Admired this...



On Saturday I had booked into the Ink and Spindle screen printing course, so went a bit earlier, of course, and bought this from Earthgirl....



and this from Pear Tree yarns....


and this from Crayon Chick.


and this was one of the tea towels I printed at the most excellent course! The other one was raindrops and an umbrella that I gave away to a friend that night at a baby shower.


Had such a good time! Thanks to all the team at Ink and Spindle and Lara from Harvest Textiles, who taught us.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Fame

We have a slightly famous neighbour - that's if you follow the AFL, which we don't, really, that is until the little big man took up Auskick. He has become an ardent Hawks supporter. He even knows what "barack" means, previously a foreign and slightly sneered at Australian term.

We are from New Zealand, after all, where rugby is King and shall remain so for all eternity. Go, the Mighty Blacks! (I might add here that I am not a sports fan, as such. My husband is a huge sports fan, however. I tolerate this. He tolerates my overspending)

Anyway, back to said neighbour...I am in the bath, the doorbell rings. Dom says it is him from next door!
Alas, Alack, I must greet him in my dressing gown and Ugg boots!
He wants to borrow the kids to take photos for his new cooking with kids show.

Many photos were taken. Shirt was signed. Cooking utensils were wielded. Little Big Man got to cuddle up to his new hero - I'm surprised he didn't plant a kiss on his cheek! Littlest Man made himself at home on his couch.

Tv stardom beckons! I will become a "Stage Mom"! Let me know if autographs are required. I have Pay Pal (snort!)





Thursday, May 13, 2010

Skirt fever!

I've madly been making winter skirts, having seen some gorgeous fabrics around and feeling that, since I can sew in a zip (sort of) , I could actually make a simple pattern into something fantastic. 

First one was made with Ink and Spindle Birch fabric in two colourways, Black on Charcoal and Red on Cream.




I kept the selvedge on instead of making a hem at the front.




Second was from Prints Charming fabric. I saw a great photo of a similar one on their blog and felt that, seeing imitation is the most sincere form of flattery, that I would do my best to imitate it!






 Lots of lovely trim on the bottom.