Thursday, March 31, 2016

End of the Month - Goal evaluations and setting April's

I wrote an end of month wrap up a few days ago and nothing has changed. I had hoped that I might get the quilting on the hashtag quilt done but it wasn't to be. I thought about it today but I realised that getting on with some of my blog posts for the A to Z blogging challenge was more important and so that is what I have done. So I end the month having accomplished all of my goals in full apart from that part of one goal ... I got it pinned just not quilted.

So what am I going to get up to for April.

Well my major goal for this month is to complete the Blogging A to Z challenge. For this I have to have a blog post for every day in April, apart from Sundays, and the theme will start with A on the 1st, B on the 2nd, C on the 4th (since the 3rd is a Sunday) etc.

As well as doing our own blog we are asked to visit and comment on at least 5 other blogs each day. So... its quite a time absorber.

April is already an insane month here. I am a bridal attendant on the 9th for a very dear friend. I am going to her place on Monday 4th to help her with last minute preparation and fun stuff so I'll be away from home for a week. 

I will come home for a couple of days and then Fixit Guy and I are heading off till the end of May. We are going to Brisbane to see our 3 kids who live there; Fangirl, Kombi Boy and partner Gamer Girl and our youngest Boyo. We need to buy a car for Boyo as he starts teaching prac end of May and needs a car to get there.  We also need to do some paperwork regarding  our new caravan. 

Then we head to Newcastle for the wedding of a special niece on the 22nd and from there we head to Melbourne to pick up our caravan and to see our oldest son aka The Beast.

We will then spend a few weeks exploring Victoria and catching up with some other special family and friends. We have to be back in Queensland for Synod meetings from May 20th after which we will see the family in Brisbane again before coming home for a bit before heading back down to Yeppoon for a quilting retreat. So... pretty busy times ahead

So ... its crazy  busy time and I am not sure how much time I will get to blog or to sew. I am trying to get my blogs for the A to Z challenge written ahead of time (I'm up to K)

I have a couple of projects bubbling away that I would like to get done whilst travelling... at least the tops done. I am hoping to get them prepped before we leave but not sure that will get done. Both are for people who may stop by and read this blog so I will try not to give too much away. Hand projects will be at a premium with so much car travel. I am blessed to be able to sew in the car.

So my goals for this month are going to be pretty simple to start with. I might add more as I go

  • Complete A to Z blogging challenge as well as keep up my regular WIP Wednesday and Sunday Stash reports. (this is my OMG goal)
  • work on sewing left over hexies together for the backing of the hexie quilt
  • find another hand project as required
  • work on some Handmade With Love projects (to be decided)
I've just discovered a linky party at Red Letter Quilts called OMG - one monthly goal.  So I will link up with that. Kinda nice to have a place to share my goals.

grab button for RedLetterQuilts

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

WIP Wednesday

Have had a busy and very successful week sewing wise.. and personally. On the personal front it was my birthday on Easter Sunday and to add to the pleasure and chocolatey joy of that occasion our oldest and youngest child had both travelled back home to share the day (and the rest of the week) with us. That was a great day. Fixit Guy made me my birthday cake

On the sewing front... this week I got the backing for Diamond Dash 2... which I have now decided to call Dash it All... completed and today at Patchwork Group Lindi helped me pin baste it. 

Had a whoopsie. Despite having 24" excess for width in the batting I managed to have it go crooked on the other side and the very bottom corner edge has no batting under it. I will patch a piece in before I start quilting... of course it was the last corner we pinned so the whole quilt was done by the time I realised. Mumble mumble. (I hate basting a quilt)

I completed another top this week. This quilt has trucks and machines all over it - a quilt for a special person. The panel which it was made from was actually for a rag book. I loathe rag books in general anyway so happily chopped this panel up to make an alternative. There were 12 "pages" that went into the quilt and I made the other 4 blocks from a co-ordinating border fabric. 

 As is my want, the back is also pieced using up various left over fabric from the front. Making the backing took longer than making the top... that is often the way it seems. 

I pin basted it at Patchwork this morning and quilted it this afternoon. This evening I put the binding on and made the label. A pretty quick finish for me!

Yesterday at Handmade With Love (for Our Rainbow House) I made 2 bags from some lovely fabric that had been donated. I didn't have a pattern - I basically fudged it as I went along. The pattern featured ads from an earlier era and so was perfect for shopping bags. I forgot to take any photos of the finished items which is a shame. I was very pleased with them although I have to adapt the dimensions I think.

I have been trying to get organised for the A to Z blogging challenge as well. I have pre written up to D... only 22 more to go... eek.

WIPs on Wednesday

Sunday, March 27, 2016

End of Month Goal review

Its 4 days to go till the end of the month and I am delighted to be able to report that I have completed or made substantial progress on ALL my goals. Way to go me!
  • work on baby quilt for Megan DONE. Its been dropped off to the grandma who is going to Mackay to visit the new baby this week.
  • Do 15 minutes quilt related work each day DONE I managed this every day so far.
  • Complete Dash the Cat DONE Got it quilted bound and even labelled.

  • Work on Diamond Dash Quilt 2 - DONE - I completed the back as well. Hope to get it basted this week at Patchwork.
  • work on hexie quilt -Top DONE. I've worked out a design to use up the left over into the backing. 

  • Pin and quilt hashtag quilt- PINNED. I might get a chance to quilt it this week. Hope so.
  • empty scrap basket - DONE. I did this Sunday afternoon. I wanted it done before I started another project. I have a cute one planned, not too complex that I want to knock out this week. We'll see how that goes. Meanwhile Eevee made sure the basket didn't stay empty for long

  • make 2 Gruffalo capes for Kylie DONE. Kylie sent me a cut picture of her daughter A wearing the cloak I made.

Sunday Stash - More finishes

So excited. I am on a roll. I got another quilt finished. Dash That Cat is now done, even labelled and ready to go to its new home . It is great to have another finish under my belt. The finished quilt is 265 cm x 232 cms (91"x 104") and used 13.91m of fabric. It might even have been more since both the binding and backing were pieced but I will let it sit at just under 14m of fabric. I occasionally use a bit of fabric I have acquired and no add into the spread sheet so it evens out in the end.

I'm sorry I don't have a decent photo of it but its so huge its hard to get one, especially since my rotary hoist clothes line broke a few years back

I have also been making some cute little baskets for Handmade with Love. 

Anyway back to the fabric baskets I made. We put Easter Eggs in them for a little but it was so hot they were getting soft so we had to put them into the cold box to firm up. Some of the fabric in them was from Handmade Love but I supplied all the linings. 55cms in all. 

The pattern for the baskets was based on this link which came from an email from All People Quilt with links to Easter projects. I adapted it to make some slightly larger baskets and also to account for one way fabric.

We had a stall for Handmade Love on Saturday at the markets associated with our town Sunflower Festival. We didn't make a heap of money but $200 is a welcome addition to our coffers and it is encouraging to see stuff we make going on out into the community. 

It helps us recognise what sells and what doesn't. So far my zipper pouches for the ear buds haven't been a big hit but I love them and so does everyone I've given them to. I made another rectangular casserole carrier to go with one I'd made earlier in the week and 3 sets of pot mitts to match. The fabric used in the carrier and pot mitts came from Zambia, bought back by our project director on one of her trips to the school (Our Rainbow House in Chainda, Lusaka Zambia) 

I also made a little zipper purse for the stall. None of the fabric for these things came from my stash - all was from Handmade Love stocks. 

No purchases this week.

Stats from Weeks 13
                 Fabric used            14.46m

                 Fabric added           0.00m

Year to Date
                 Fabric used         29.38m
                 Fabric added       19.17m
Net Used                              +10.20m  

Yes I am finally into the black for the first time this year. Those two fat quarter bundles at the beginning of the year have taken a lot to pare back. But we are there at last. I have another quilt pinned and ready to be quilted - My Twilters Hashtag quilt, a quilt top finished that I am working on the backing for (Diamond Dash 2), and another top finished this week (My Hexie Quilt - still no name - maybe that is going to be it). If I became uber productive in this next week I could get all 3 finished (or not) They will make a giant leap in my fabric used stats.

Linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

WIP Wednesday

I am really excited. I have made fantastic progress on 2 projects this week.

Hexie quilt: The top is completed - as far as stitching goes. I put the last stitch in it at the conclusion of our church council meeting last night. It was a long meeting and I was able to get the "Sky" connected to the rest of the quilt.

This morning at Patchwork I took out the basting stitches and removed all the papers apart from around the edge. I am leaving them in till I have it pinned ready to quilt. The hand stitching is a little too fragile to take the dragging around. The seams unravel easily even though I double knotted them as much as possible.

 Now to work out the backing! I have left over hexies and I am wondering about incorporating them but think I might leave them for another project and do a non pieced backing

I am so thrilled to have it done. People ask me what I am going to do with it and honestly I don't know. I have no plans for it... no particular place for it to go. But I am sure I will find somewhere special for it.

Dash That Cat (that I have called Drat that Cat a few times....) The quilting is completed. Yes. under the needle was tricky although made easier by the fact I quilted in rows... along each row of blocks. Still restling that mammoth quilt (91"x 104") was awkward 

 Just the binding to go. I am a pretty slack quilter compared to some of the quilting I see others do. But... I don't get excited by it, quilting I mean. I do a pretty good meander and other times I do a lovely loose free motion free form quilting pattern and that is what I have done on DTC. 

I tried out a variety of different patterns on the blocks going across the quilt... spirals, meander and this loose swirl and dip thing... which I also did on the sashing and  the top and bottom borders. I did a chain of hearts on the side borders and they were all different sizes and free form. I enjoyed doing them. I used an Aurifil thread from Tula Pink's collection - choosing a varigated peachy pink. 

I made the binding at Patchwork group this morning. I needed 400 inches. I used some of the bits I trimmed off the backing after I had quilted it plus other bits of left over fabric and cut up one more fat quarter from the Japanese fabric bundle - Uki. There seems to be oodles of it but I can use leftovers in the binding for  Diamond Dash 2 quilt

At Handmade Love this week I was able to do some fun sewing. I made a little zipper bag to go on a key fob using a pattern called Teeny Tiny Mini Zipper Pouch keyring by So Sew Easy found here (the title is bigger than the pouch)

I also made a casserole carrier using some African fabric the director of Our Rainbow House Alison bought back with her on trip to our school in Zambia

It was good to get a couple of finishes under the belt. I cut out the fabric for a 2nd casserole carrier which will be the reverse of this one (green on the outside, blue inside) and there are scraps to make pot mitts to match. 

What have you been sewing this week?

Linking up with

WIPs on Wednesday

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Tuesday Museday

Greetings and salutations. This blog post is going to be a mixture of updates - monthly Goals, Marchalong and Blogging A to Z.

Starting with the last one - I have just scheduled all my blog posts for the month. I have scheduled them to come out at 8 AM each day of the challenge in April. At the moment they consist of a title, some labels and that is it! It means I am going to have to get my butt into gear and write those posts otherwise you will get a blank blog post. I managed, with the help of my friends on Twilters, to come up with a vaguely patchwork related theme for each day. Some of them are a stretch I acknowledge but you get that sometimes. My daughter (Fangirl) is coming up with 2 separate blogposts for each day AND is cross stitching 2 figures for each day as well. She is mad. But she is also committed, fiendishly organised and.... having just moved to the city not very involved in other things (besides her work). So.... that is where I am at with the challenge.

March Goals.

I have been busy but haven't completed any more of the goals from my last checking

1. Baby quilt for Megan. DONE Bub arrived yesterday but haven't heard the name yet so haven't made the label

2. 15 minutes quilt related work each day. This is part of Darla, the Scientific Quilter, Marchalong for March. Continuing to do more than 15 minutes each day... yay

Complete Diamond Dash quilt 1 Dash That Cat. I have started quilting this. I have completed the blocks and am now doing the sashing and border.

Work on Diamond Dash Quilt 2 Haven't done any work on this quilt so far this month. 

Work on Hexie Quilt I am up to the final bit of the top.... stitching together the sky to the rest of the quilt. Then I have to take out the last of the papers, make the backing and work out how to quilt it.

6 Pin and quilt hashtag quilt The quilt is pinned but not yet quilted. 

Make 2 Gruffalo capes for Kylie DONE

Empty scrap basket Not yet... 


17th Thursday. Hand stitching on the hexie quilt.

18th Friday. Handstitching on hexie quilt

19th Saturday Busy day with pre-wedding party in the morning, guests for lunch and then a lazy afternoon stitching in my chair 

20th Sunday Handstitching again - working on stitching the little bits into the top of the hexie quilt to even it off - half hexies that will be trimmed down. Also wrote blog posts

21st Monday Started quiting Drat that Cat. Got all the block rows done and started on the sashing strips.

22nd Tuesday Spent the morning at Handmade With Love. Made a little zipper purse and a casserole carrier. Not bad for a mornings work. Home again I have spent several hours on the blog, setting up the blog posts for April's A to Z challenge, and writing this post.

Blogging from A to Z Theme reveal

I'm a day late according to Australian time for my theme reveal but still in time for other parts of the globe.

My theme is going to be quilting. No surprise there now is there! It was my theme last year too and my aim is to choose different things this year. I still have some blanks in my plan for this year so I might sneakily creep back to last years blogs and see what I came up with for them.

I do have a range of things I can talk about - different styles of quilting, different quilts I have made, tools, techniques and even blocks. I am sure it will be fascinating LOL. I had thought of trying to make a different block each day but to be honest April is going to be so hectic and I committed to this so late I don't think I am going to be able to do that. I guess I could try and then confess failure when it occurs.... but I won't commit to that.

Hope to see you around the place in April

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Sunday Stash Report A FINISH

I got a finish. At last. Only my second for the year... 2nd quilt that is. In fact it was basically a start and a finish in the same week. I had pulled the fabric out and cut some of it the week or so previously but had stalled again. And then... this week I got home from something... Monday I think it was and just thought... right that is it and boom... got onto it. Got the back and front put together and was able to pin it Wednesday morning and then Wednesday afternoon I got it quilted and I did the binding that night. BOOM. It felt so good. 

The quilt (that I have already posted lots of pictures of here) used a number of panels and fabrics to do with the Very Hungry Caterpillar. 

My kids loved that book. In fact when I was talking about it to my husband we were both able to quote reams of it off to each other (our baby is 21!!) so we obviously read it a lot. The mother of the baby it is for is someone we have known since birth (conception even !!!!!) Bub still hasn't put in an appearance yet so I haven't done the label yet. I am sure I read the book to her whilst she was little too. 

We bought a copy of the book to send with the quilt. (one can never have too many picture books or quilts)

So a finish! Yes... even if it was only a cot quilt (well 120cm x 130cm) Given that it was pieced back and front I added a bit extra fabric in the usage and came up with 4.17m fabric used.

I also purchased some fat quarters. I had to go to the fabric shop to buy more pins as I had to pin out 2 quilts, and already have one pinned. The one already pinned was pinned within an inch of its life as it was a bit out of shape and needed to be well pinned. Then one of the quilts I had to pin on Wednesday (not my finish) was huge.... Drat that Cat.... I bought 3 boxes of 150 pins and still needed to borrow some from Lyndi. The LQS had a selection of fat quarters on special for $3 and I got 3 featuring lady birds - 3 different colour ways. They will make cute little bags I think. 

Stats from Weeks 11-12
                 Fabric used            4.17m

                 Fabric added           0.77m

Year to Date
                 Fabric used         14.92m
                 Fabric added       19.17m
Net Used                              -4.25m

So I'm still in the red but clawing back gradually. I have 2 quilts pinned ready to go and another top made that I have to do the backing for... so I am making progress.

Linking up with Judy at Patchwork Times

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Blogging from A to Z

I wasn't going to go in this again. I did it last year. I blogged every day for a month (with Sundays off for good behaviour!!) with the theme for each day starting with a new letter of the alphabet, starting with A for April 1st.

Last year I did it. Even though we went to Malaysia for 10 days in the middle of it. I managed it but I wasn't at all inspired to do it again. I resisted the emails that arrived in my inbox letting me know that it was on again. Enouraging me to get involved. I ignored them. I ignored the one that told me it was sign up day. Yup. I let that one go... but somehow.... here we are... 14 days out from start up... with another killer April coming up ...including 2 weddings, one of which I am a bridal attendant for, neither of which are in my home town. Including travel again, this time for most of April... and ... yes... I have committed to it. Sigh. I think I am mad.

My blog is a quilting blog. The name gives it away doesn't it. The name of the blog gives away quite a few things about me.

Pip. That is my nickname, used by my family all my life and by friends that know me through my family. My friends who know me outside my family life tend to call me by my proper name Philipa. Calling me Philipa or Pip doesn't signify how close you are to me. It just signifies how you met me. Its weird but people who know me through family have to call me Pip. Its weird if my sister introduces me as Philipa. Its just... weird. It also seems weird when people who met me as Philipa decide that since they know me well they can call me Pip. It doesn't upset or anger me... it just seems weird. The woman for whom I am bridesmaid next month calls me Philipa. She is, obviously, a dear and precious friend.

Ozzy - I'm Australian... a proud Australian. I'm 8th generation Australian on my mum's side (yes I proudly count a number of convicts amongst my ancestors!!) On Dad's side I'm 3rd generation. Because most of my regular readers are from outside of Australia I do try to put in photos of things that are unique about my part of the world when I can. 

Quilts. I'm a quilter. That is my main passtime and it is what I usually write about on my blog. I do ramble on about my life in general at times but mostly .. its about my quilts. Calling this blog Ozzypip raves on about her life just didn't have that same ring to it.

So I'm in and again my blog will be mostly about my quilting life. I don't want to go over the same ground I went over last year so have to come up with some new things around the same theme. 

I am thinking hard  - to come up with stuff about quilting for each letter of the alphabet. Wish me luck

March Goals Checkin

Its half way through the month so time to check in on my goals

1. Baby quilt for Megan. I have finished the quilt (The VHC quilt) all but the label which I can't complete until the little mister puts in his appearance which as yet he hasn't. So that goal is DONE

2. 15 minutes quilt related work each day. This is part of Darla, the Scientific Quilter, Marchalong for March. I have done more that 15 minutes every day. I am sure that it has been this in part that has finally got me moving on both the baby quilt (see above) and Diamond Dash (see below)

3 Complete Diamond Dash quilt 1. This has been now been named Dash That Cat.(DTC) I had already completed the top last month but this month I have completed the back and now have it pinned (as of this morning) Now to quilt it. Its a huge quilt (took approx. 600 pins to baste it)

4 Work on Diamond Dash Quilt 2 Haven't done any work on this quilt so far this month. The top is together already and some piecing for the back but nothing for March

5 Work on Hexie Quilt I have done a lot of work on this quilt. The centre and bottom parts of the quilt are together. The top part which is the sky and clouds are to be completed. I have started on it

6 Pin and quilt hashtag quilt The quilt is pinned but not yet quilted. I am not sure I will get this done this month as I have to quilt DTC

7 Make 2 Gruffalo capes for Kylie DONE

8 Empty scrap basket Not yet... I have taken some scraps out of it to use in the scrappy binding for the VHC quilt so does that count as starting? Perhaps not

March along update

8th - Tuesday. Some hand stitching on hexie quilt including some during panel discussion at morning tea. Made 2 Gruffalo capes for my friend Kylie. Watched some more Missouri Star quilt company videos. Wrote blog post for Marchalong.

9th - Wednesday. I babysat a gorgeous little girl today - the lovely Miss Teesh. She is 2 and entertained herself really well and then had a massive 3.5 hour sleep so lots of hand stitching time

10th - Thursday Babysat Miss Teesh again. She was more demanding today... thought I should play blocks on the floor with her as well as take her for a walk and only a 2.5 hour sleep during which I had a visitor to plan a pre wedding party for a friend... so not as much hand stitching time but still some. Lots more at night though - and I wrote a WIP Wednesday post

11th - Friday - took my hand stitching to bible study but forgot both the pattern (photo on my phone) and the needles... so not much done BUT did do a fair bit in the afternoon. (Go me) Fixit Guy was away for 2 nights so lots of uninterrupted stitching

12th Saturday The morning was spent at a Mud Run. Yes not only did a run (well jogged a bit and lots of walking) but I also waded, swam, crawled and slid through mud and muddy water. I also struggled over various obstacles and NO at this point I have no photos (all our group was in the mud so no one to hold onto phones or cameras and take photos of us although there are some professional ones out there on the net somewhere) After we got home I had another shower (we had one out there too) and then flopped on the couch for 5 hours and stitched and snoozed. Had dinner with a friend and then did more stitching

13th Sunday. Did a bit of handstitching during church but had a very busy day - early to church for singing practice, the service, morning tea and then a run through of songs for a cantata we are going to be putting on. Home for lunch and make scones and then up to Café 126 where I worked making tea and coffee for the residents who came to the café. (at our aged care facility) Home and got to sit and stitch for a while.

14th Monday Hand stitching on the hexie quilt for the afternoon and evening.

15th Tuesday  Handmade with Love - folding and sorting donated fabric followed by stitching on labels onto the items that had been made over the last couple of months... by hand and by machine. Spent the afternoon and evening piecing together a cuddle quilt for a baby due soon. Used various pieces of Very Hungry Caterpillar fabric Pieced the front and back

16th Wednesday Patchwork group. Pinned the VHC quilt and Dash That Cat. That was 3 hours worth of work! In the afternoon I quilted the VHC, made the binding and attached it. I also wrote my WIP Wednesday blog post.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

WIP Wednesday

I didn't get a Stash report this week but given that there was nothing to report I guess you didn't miss much!!

I've been working on a few different things this week.

Hexie Quilt I'm going to have to come up with a better name for this project! Anyway - my hand piecing project. I have made great progress on this again this week. I completed the bottom section and added it to the centre piece which is all but done (has a few half hexies to be added to the sides)

I've started work on the top piece which consists of clouds and the sky. I completed the foundation row - the row that will attach to the part of the quilt that is already completed. I will built on that and finish it off before attaching it to the rest of the completed quilt.  I am going to have to redo a bit of it cause I made a mistake but still... it was completed for a little bit :)

Dash that Cat - the first of my Diamond Dash quilts. Today at Patchwork group I got it pinned out. I had to buy more pins for it. Its so huge it took almost 600 pins to baste it. I am not looking forward to quilting it on my home machine but I will. (I keep telling myself that anyway) I had lots of help from 2 friends at Patchwork this morning... thanks Lindy and Daph. I owe them big time. Pinning it got a bit tricky cause the batting was only just wide enough (I used the full width of the roll) and the backing only just long enough so between the two it took quite a bit of juggling. No pictures of this one. I forgot to take any... too busy pinning pinning pinning

Handmade with Love I finally managed to get to a sewing day for Handmade  With Love. ( For newbies to the blog this is a sewing group that makes things to sell to raise money for a school in Zambia. We also make things for the children at the school.

I have met up with the ladies twice this year - once for our birthday celebrations at the beginning of February and then last week when we went together to the International Women's Day celebrations. Yesterday was the first actually sewing day that I have made. I spent the 4 hours that I was there sorting some of the fabric we have been donated and then the rest of my time there sewing labels onto the completed articles, including the 6 little zipper ear bud pouches that I made.

I also helped Jasmine to make her first zipper pouch. She got the hang of it really quickly and plans to make some more for us and herself.

The VHC Quilt Regular readers of my blog won't recognise that name. That's because it's been only a short time in the making. True I did get the pieces out over a week ago and had planned to make a start on it but the cats did an intervention on me and kept me away from the project by camping on the pieces every time I thought about working on it.

Finally yesterday, after I got home from a morning of boring sewing (attaching labels) I liberated it from the cats and set to work on it and by the end of the day I had completed both the top and the pieced back. Go me. Today at Patchwork I also pinned out this quilt  and this afternoon I got it quilted, the binding made and this evening I finished it off attaching it. Still have to make the label but the baby it is for hasn't been born yet so can't do that.

I shared the photos of the quilt on the Twilters Group on Facebook and one of the members commented that she had the fabric too but couldn't work out how to use it. I have to confess I have had this Very Hungry Caterpillar fabric for 8 years. Fangirl bought most of it for me as a gift in 2008 and I bought the big panels for myself a few years later. Today at Patchwork Daph told me that she had some of the fabric too and likewise was struggling with what to do with it. Hopefully my efforts might inspire them to work on their quilts. So really VHC is not a WIP at all... cause its all but done. on Wednesday