Thursday, March 31, 2011

Happy, healthy sewing machine

I gave the sewing machine some extra TLC the other night (using this helpful guide) and it's working beautifully again. Usually, when it plays up like it was, I figure it's time for a service, and bring it away. But I already had my other machine in for a service and wasn't ready to be machine-less for two weeks, so there was no other option than to do it myself. I'll certainly be doing this more often now! Thanks to a happy, healthy sewing machine, the latest quilt is now completely quilted and waiting to have its threads buried.

Today though, I am getting stuck into a rather crazy little sewing project (which I will show soon) which is keeping my mind off the fact that I have to do some public speaking this evening.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Book buddies

I love these shots. I love the fact that Daniel likes to settle in next to Caleb when he's reading. I love that Caleb happily shares his stories with Daniel.
I love that they are becoming the best of buddies.......just like two other kids I know...

Saturday, March 26, 2011

My sewing space

Today I packed the first boxes in preparation for our move into our new house. I can't believe we are finally that far - well, we hope to be in a few weeks time anyway. I'm really looking forward to the extra space and light. But it occurred to me as I was quilting away last night, that I will actually miss this sewing space I have here. It's right in the middle of things, sandwiched between the dining room and the lounge-cum-playroom. It's not beautiful, but it has enabled me to accomplish a lot of sewing in between all the craziness of life with four kids.

In the new house, the studio is about last on our list of things to finish, so I will probably be using this door-and-crate setup for a bit longer, just not in the middle of the living space!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Sewing wins the day

Yes, the sewing won out on Tuesday. It was a tough choice, though - I was certainly tempted to go shopping, Natalie. But I was also very excited about this latest quilt. I think it's my favourite to date! If I can get my sewing machine to behave (it's having some attitude issues) I will start quilting it tonight.

Oh, and for some reason, all of our babies have had an overwhelming urge to trample on my quilt tops and quilts the moment they are laid out on the ground...

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

A rather nice dilemma

My mother-in-law has kindly invited Caleb and Daniel to come and play for the day. Which gives me a whole day to myself! So now I have a dilemma - to sew or to shop. I have a new quilt top cut out on my sewing table, all ready for piecing. I also have a whole lot of shopping and looking to do before we move into our new house. Both options will be so much easier to accomplish without the two little boys. Which option would you take?

Friday, March 18, 2011

What is it about afternoons?

While I'm eyeing off that stack of fabric over there, my boys have other plans. One is on my lap crying because he's not allowed to have another drink of juice (he had his last one a whole 5 minutes ago).And the other one is pouting on the ground next to me, indignant that he's not the one sitting on my lap.
From about 3:30pm onwards, that pretty much sums up afternoons around here. It's all about 'just hanging in there' until dinnertime. And hoping that they grow out of it soon.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Creative juices

Working on another quilt got my creative juices flowing! With new quilt ideas filling my head, the only way forward was to get them down on paper. I'm really excited about the way this new design is taking shape, and I don't think it's going to wait till we've moved to be sewn up. The 28 blinds that still need to be sewn are just going to have to wait!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Sneak a peek at my newest artwork!

Here's a little sneak peek of the artwork I made for the Mt Romance Centennial Art Prize. I'll share the complete quilt when the exhibition opens (I think it runs from the 1st to the 14th of April, at the Centennial Hall in Albany).

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Spanish press

The Spanish magazine ArtePatchwork reviewed the SAQA exhibitions at the International Quilt Festival in Houston. We received a digital copy of the article and I was excited to find that they included images of both of the quilts I have in the SAQA Creative Force 2010 exhibition.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Improving a quilt label

I'm rather excited about my new quilt labels! Lyric Kinard made me a thermofax screen (somewhat similar to a silkscreen) with my 'letterhead' on it. I finally tried it out on Saturday, and it prints up beautifully. All I need to do for each label is write the artwork title and dimensions underneath. Definitely an improvement on this:

Wednesday, March 9, 2011


We have worked on all manner of projects here this summer, but I have been rather negligent in sharing them with you. I blame it on a couple of things. Firstly, the light (or lack of) in this house takes the fun out of photographing my work throughout the day. Secondly, most projects have been related to our new house (giving our old furniture a new lease of life) and they're either not finished, or its too awkward to take photos of them right now. Hopefully I can share some of those after we move (in six weeks time!)
One thing I wasn't planning to do this school term was make art quilts. I had agreed (with myself) to put them on hold until we move. But that only lasted halfway the term! The quilt pictured is my current work-in-progress. It's a response to the bushfires here last month, and I plan to submit it to the Mt Romance Centennial Art Prize in Albany. Nothing like cutting it fine - it was started last week, and needs to be at the couriers by next week Friday afternoon! So I better get back to it.

Friday, March 4, 2011

A certain useful engine

You may remember these play quilts for Aaron and Hannah? They are still very popular, and they still don't have enough blankets to build their cubbies! Well, it's high time for Caleb to have one too. I have had a few fabric bits sitting around for a while, including a couple of train prints, but needed more - preferably interesting, but cheap. So I was over the moon when I discovered a quiltcover set from the '80s in the opshop, featuring a certain useful engine...
Because of the large scale print, I could make up the rest of the quilt from this piece of fabric! The quilt is going to be a 3rd birthday present, but as you can see, we're not being very secretive about it - after all, half the fun is in the making. Caleb has loved watching me make this, and picking out the various engines.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Blue-eyed blonde

Just because he hasn't featured here much lately, here's a picture of our littlest man. He loves nothing better than to muck about outside, poking in the sand...
...or fishing in the fish pond. Yes, there is a fishpond hidden underneath that old security door. I am thankful for the safety that door provides, but can't help but wonder if it doesn't add a whole lot of allure to that fishpond.At 14 months Daniel believes he is able to keep up with Caleb in everything, which may go partway to explaining why he puts his teeth through his lips about twice a week!