I did my darnedest to resist, truly I did. But every time I walked past these fabrics in my local quilt shop, they were calling my name. Those sweet elephants, their innocent little eyes coaxing me, "Come on Bloom, you know you want to" ...
What is it with the eyes? The owls too have that pleading look, "Hoo, hoo, take me home ... take me home"!
And the monkeys? Well, who could resist such cheeky smiles!So try as I might, these cute creatures have charmed their way to my place, destined for what will hopefully be a busy weekend of sewing. They are from Melanie Hurlston's 'too cute for words' range, 'Little Menagerie'. Melly, you do 'eyes' way too well - I'm sure there's some subliminal messaging going on!
Not that my days are chock-a-block with tips, but here is my 'tip of the day' nonetheless. Inspired by this post, over at La Vie en Rosie, I made myself a block board today.
Armed with a $2 art canvas, some spray adhesive and some fleece, I made myself a block board. That is, I stuck the fleece to the board and trimmed the excess. How clever am I?! I chose the art canvas only because it is flat and inflexible. Any sort of 'board' would do.
I can now transfer my nine-patch pieces from my design wall to my machine (admittedly only metres away!) without losing bits or forgetting the layout I decided upon. The fabric squares stick nicely to the fleece, no slipping. What can I say - happiness from the simplest things!
For those of you who have been waiting patiently for my sewing machine cover pattern, 'Beyond Measure', it is ready and available at the shop! This pattern was originally published in the November 2010 issue of Australian Homespun magazine.
The cover is a tailored design, closed at the ends to keep the dreaded dust at bay. It has piping trim, simple running stitch embroidery and pearl button embellishment. The 'measuring tape' twill ribbon can be purchased at The Home Patch, who readily do mail orders. They sell the ribbon in metric & imperial markings.
I made the cover twice, changing the patchwork panel from the hip and happening 'Hope Valley' by Denyse Schmidt to the more subdued and elegant fabrics from the 'Martinique' range by 3 Sisters. It gives the cover and entirely different look.
I live by a theory that ANYTHING + LINEN = SUCCESS.
'Hope Valley' and 'Martinique' are such different ranges, but against the common foil of linen, I think they both sparkle.
Outside my window ... are my beloved roses. The day is refreshingly cool after a hot spell.
I am thinking ...how much I hate housework. Over the years, I have come up with all sorts of strategies to motivate me to get through the household tasks. Today is one of those days where there is so much to do, I don't know where to start. I have taken myself aside and we have decided to 'just do SOMETHING'! I dug out this little stash of squares, and have put them next to my sewing machine.
I am stitching ... therefore, between menial household tasks, little 9-patch blocks as a reward for my impressive domesticity!
I am thankful for ... healthy, energetic children, even though they fight with each other and wear me out!
From the kitchen ... I need to make up a batch of Thimbelina's Easy Scrolls. These have been a hit for school lunches. I make them at my leisure, wrap them, freeze them and thereby avoid the dreaded sandwich making in the mornings.
There is an awful feeling of impending doom here in Australia today. There is a severe cyclone due to hit the far north Queensland coast this evening. How much can the people of our beautiful northern state endure? The state is just recovering from devastating floods, and now this. I am old enough (just!) to remember Cyclone Tracy which hit Darwin on Christmas Day in 1974. And this cyclone is shaping up to be just as destructive.
To my blog friends in the path of tropical cyclone Yasi, we are thinking of you and praying for your safety.
Today was the first day of a new school year for my three kids. They are busy children. I love to have them home on holidays - they busily set about amusing themselves by 'making stuff'.
Miss 15 decided she wanted to make herself a pencil case. She found my Amy Butler scraps and went to town:
This little project signifies the emergence of 'a girl who sews' to me. Armed with Oh Fransson's excellent wristlet pattern, she made this entirely by herself.
The 12-year-old boy's obsession with origami continues unabated. These holidays it was all about increasing complexities ...
... and decrease of scale. The smallest of these is just a half inch tall!
And Little Miss 9 contented herself with prolific drawing in every colour imaginable!
For me, there was some time to finally conquer the dreaded 8-way pinwheel seam. This is part of a project to be published later in the year, so 'Mum's the word'!
The first day back for another school year leaves me a little melancholy that my time with my kids is flying by. For one reason or another I have had Colin Buchanan's 'Be Strong and Courageous' in my head.
Be strong and courageous the Lord of the ages
Holds all his little ones safe by his side
Be strong and courageous the Lord of the ages
Holds all his little ones safe
Do not fear the fire / darkness / enemy
Do not fear the water / sadness / poverty
Do not fear the thunder / sickness / eternity
Jesus has conquered them all
This was written as a message for children, but today I feel like it was written for me!
So today the house is quiet and there is time to catch up with all the jobs that have been on standby.
P.S. By the end of the day I was singing U2's 'Helter Skelter' in my head. What does that say?! School's in session!