Saturday, June 24, 2017


Image courtesy of Visit NSW

I had reason to travel to the beautiful Hunter Valley recently - renowned for its vineyards, Angus beef cattle, thoroughbred horses and coal.

The mines aren't quite so pretty as this but the whole valley is one outrageously large coal deposit. Quality ore. Which we dig up and sell around the world.

Let's just stick with the pleasant images, shall we?

I stayed in a beautiful historic home, now a bed & breakfast. Segenhoe Inn is a classic Colonial Georgian two storey built in 1837 from the same gorgeous sandstone used to construct so many Australian colonial buildings. The Hunter Valley was settled not that long after the settlement of Australia in 1788.

The walls are about 12 inches thick with the door jams and skirting boards made from wide planks of Australian red cedar felled from the area. Large rooms, high ceilings, big comfortable beds -  it has the lot. There is also a cosy cafe at the back.

In nearby Scone, there was a terrific restaurant - The Cottage - housed in another heritage property. Delicious food!

It was nice to catch up with family, many of whom I haven't seen for far too long.  On the way home I stopped in at Glendoon Patchwork Cottage.

Fabrics at Glendoon Cottage Patchwork
I know, I know. I'm supposed to be quilting from the stash but . . . .

Well, there was such a lovely selection of Civil War Reproduction fabrics that I just had to collect a few for my quilt.

This is a good time of the year to visit another historic town - Morpeth - so I might just have to call in to Glendoon again.

Sunday, June 11, 2017


You guessed it! YELLOW is the colour for June in the RSC 2017 Challenge. There are so many wonderful blocks being made for this quilt-a-long.

Canuck Quilter's butterflies escaped into the garden and I'm in awe of so many other RSC creations.

I'm linking up with SoScrappy's Saturday.

Also found time to make another Civil War style block. This one is called Jack in the Box.

I'm saving all the offcuts and leftovers from these blocks to make smaller blocks - maybe some of the Moda Blockheads?

I saw them used as the centre of Ohio Star blocks and I quite like the idea.  Looks like I've got some catching up to do!

Sunday, May 28, 2017


The Raindrops baby quilt is finished at last. Hooray!

You're right katiemaytoo - dots are addictive. I can see more dots in my future. Maybe I just need a new prescription for my specs.

Remember these?
I still use that one on the left. They don't make 'em like that any more. Beef Casserole and Parsley Mustard Dumplings for dinner tonight. 

I've also been making some jam. Aurora Plum; Rhubarb, Pear & Ginger; and Red Grape. I use the microwave as there is less mess and it doesn't make too much.

The oven timer bell just chimed. Better check on the Banana Raspberry Choc Chip Muffins and put the kettle on for a cup of tea.

Enjoy your weekend!

Sunday, May 14, 2017


It's RSC time and the colour selected for May is GREEN. Here is my block for the challenge.

It's about all the quilty-type sewing I managed to do here this weekend other than mending. Yawn.

I did head to the Southern Highlands yesterday for the Bowral Public School Market. A combination of food and crafts. Mostly, I focus on the food - sourdough breads, jams, cheeses, cakes, pastries, farm-fresh fruits and vegetables. 

Bowral Public School was built in the late 1800s and the government architecture of that era is marvellous. The same can't be said for the soulless brick and aluminium monstrosities erected in the 1970-80s.

The 1893 entrance to the school
 I do so like that sandstone feature. Across the road from the school is one of the reasons why the Southern Highlands are much visited this time of year.

The region is ablaze with the colours of autumn. This specimen is a real beauty. We are actually having an autumn this year and you can feel Winter nipping at its heels. The last of my sassanqua camellias is in full bloom.

Gratuitous garden image for Pam at Sidewalk Shoes
It's rather bleak today so I'm off to scoff the treats I bought at the markets yesterday, watch a movie and relax. Well, it is Mother's Day here.

Sunday, April 30, 2017


Finally managed to start quilting the raindrops baby quilt. That zig zag pattern makes it quick and easy. I also like the texture it gives to the quilt. It will be good to have this project finished.

Over the years blogging has connected me with lots of lovely people who live in far away lands. From time to time, I am blessed when a parcel of goodies arrives out of the blue. Or after several emails attempting to locate said parcel at the post office.

Gail is an amazing lady who recently gave a series of history talks to more than 1000 teenage students over several days; and who also likes to travel around the States with her trusty sidekick - a pretty Sheltie called Quinn.

As she was travelling about, Gail very kindly, thought of her Aussie friend at the other end of the world and collected bits and bobs, as well as making a gorgoeus sewing table mat and pouch. She even sent a map marked with what was collected and where. Neat.

I felt well and truly spoiled with all these wonderful goodies. Thank you very much Gail.


Saturday, April 22, 2017


I managed to get a little sewing done after the family visited over Easter. It was delightful to  be together again after a long time apart as they all live overseas.

This table mat was made from fabrics that were a gift from Kelli H - my blogging buddy from way back. Thanks Kelli!

I tried my hand at some fancee-schmanzee quilting after watching a Youtube video. Don't look to close, yeah - I didn't quite pull it off. The colours work well with the floor rug in this room. My father made the table (years ago).

I also decided to make some more multi blocks for the RSC Challenge.

With these extra blocks, I can now make the quilt square. This is the pattern again to jog your memory.

Saturday, April 1, 2017


April's Rainbow Scrap Challenge is Multi and while Angela meant multi-coloured fabric, I thought I would make a multi-fabric block.

Which gives me an idea but more about that another time.

Not much sewing happened last week - lots of chores and errands to run but I have some time off work in a couple of weeks so I'm hoping to make a dent in a few projects.

I did manage to make another Civil War block. I think this one is called Album.

I'm also leaning towards Block of the Week 2017 - aren't Love's blocks marvellous?! Those little 6 inch blocks would work well in the quilt and use up all the small scraps.

I might not be making them weekly though as I already have enough projects on the go but I could do a few at a time.

My thoughts are with all those in Queensland and Northern NSW whose lives have been so badly affected by Cyclone Debbie and the dreadful weather she brought with her.

Many families have lost everything - homes, businesses, crops, pets and lots of infrastructure - and here I was whining about a few weeks of rain. . . 

Sunday, March 19, 2017


These lovely fabrics were a generous gift from Leanne - lizziethequilter - after she read my posts about the cutting mistakes on the first Civil War blocks I'd made.

 If you read Leanne's current post, she writes about the generosity and friendship of the many quilters and crafters she's met through her blog over the years.

I count myself lucky to be one of those bloggin' friends.  Thank you Leanne for these beautiful fabrics and my quilt will be all the more special for having been made from yet more gifted fabrics.

So I used some of Leanne's fabric and the mistake blocks made last time to create one of the extra 12 inch blocks I'm going to need for this quilt. It's a nod to St Patrick's Day and that both sides of my family have Irish roots.

The next block to make from Kelli's *six-pack* was the Card Trick. I spent some time searching the interwebs looking for a clever trick to make this but alas, alack, no. Just use lots of starch and press carefully!


Sunday, March 12, 2017


Red is the Rainbow Scrap Challenge 2017 colour for March. One of the bonuses of joining in on this challenge is seeing all the amazing blocks (and eventually quilts) others are making. So much inspiration. I'm looking forward to next month's colour reveal.

Meanwhile, work continues on the baby quilt. Once this top is finished, I will have to set up the other sewing machine to quilt this and the other baby quilt. Unfortunately, I don't have room for both machines to operate at the same time but I am looking at modifying the setup so that both machines can be in use.

This is the main sewing table which faces East and overlooks a small garden.

This is the side wall. I'd like to re work this corner with a wrap around (L-shaped) work space but not lose the shelving. Maybe an office work station would fit the bill.  This room is also due for a re-paint. These are old photos of the room, the Austrian blinds were removed a few years ago and replaced with a sun-block blind. Not as pretty, but more efficient at keeping out the heat.

Saturday, March 4, 2017


I made another Civil War block from the BOM Kelli gave me using the No-Waste method.

Image reproduced with the kind permission of Persimmon Quilts

Sadly,  it wasn't all smooth sailing as I managed to reverse the fabrics and made these instead. You know, I'm getting rather good at stuffing up these blocks. It's a talent. Despite my error, this is a good method that doesn't require any fancy rulers.

These won't go to waste as I want to make 12 blocks for a lap quilt for my Dad who has a keen interest in the history of the American Civil War. 

After that shamozzle and a cup of tea, work started on piecing the top for another baby quilt.

Sunday, February 26, 2017


They say that good things come in small packages - well they certainly do for me.  These treats arrived in the mail from Joanne at canuckquilter.

She sent me a wonderful selection of aqua snippets from her stash so that I could make an  aqua block for the RSC2017 challenge. Such a kind and thoughtful gesture from a very talented quilter and another APQ Blogger from the old days. Thank you so much Joanne. 

The card is a beautiful image of a natural environment in Joanne's native Canada which is being destroyed by logging. Such a shame. I also like the stamps - images of the moon - as Joanne's DH is an astronomer.

Now that I have some aqua scraps I can make my aqua block for the RSC February.

I can't wait to see what colour is chosen for March. I'm linking up with Rainbow Scrap Challenge here.

Saturday, February 18, 2017


Look at this beauty!

This week I received a parcel of goodies in the post from a lovely lady - Kelli H - with whom I've been corresponding since we *met* on the APQ Blogs some years ago.

It's from a Civil War BOM that she saw at a local quilt show. The thing with a BOM is that you only get enough fabric to make the block.

Me: Yep, that's right.

There are no leftovers.

Me: Yep, I've got it.

There can be no mistakes.

Me: I'm all over it.

So then I went and cut the squares the wrong size. Not deliberately mind.


This meant I had to go diving into the fabric stash to see if I had something that could substitute. I found some fabric from Merrit - another APQ blogger I shared emails and little gifts with.

I like the idea that this project has fabrics from both these lovely ladies. I also found some fabrics from Ariane that I had stashed away and forgotten (sorry Ariane) which go well with some fabric Christine sent me. I'm getting a miniature quilts vibe for these.

I also thought I'd use up the last of the blue, brown, and dark cream spot fabric that I've been working with lately.

I'll be making alittelbitbiased's Square Dance Quilt. Here's her version. I like the colours she has used.

Square Dance by A Little Bit Biased

There is still fabric left over so I plan to use it in the backing.