Free Block of the Month Wall Quilt - Block 9

I have a quick and easy block for you this month in our Block of the Month free pattern, 

So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you.  Col. 3:12

Some simple piecing and a teeny bit of embroidery!
You can find the pattern here
 in my Craftsy store.

It's the day of "small things" in my studio at the moment. I needed to have a break from making quilts so that I could have the satisfaction of accomplishing a lot in a short time!

I really DO have a short attention span!
Penny rug pincushion:

Apart from needing the "quick achievement fix", I'm having two stalls in the next couple of months, so it's an ideal time to get together some small items.

Embellished hand towels:

More pot stands:

Have a look also at my facebook page or my Instagram site for other things I've been making recently.

Did you watch any of the DVD's on Craftsy's free "All you can watch" Day? I watched seven series - of course, not right through all the lessons, skipping bits where I was very familiar, skim-watching where I wasn't learning anything new, and going over bits that were really instructive. I had a great time but now I need another life so I can try out all those great ideas!


Forget about sleep - 24 hours to watch free classes

All-You-Can Watch Day

Craftsy have an amazing offer of FREE
one-day access to ALL their online
Craftsy Classes.

  • Starts: Monday, September 4th at 12:01am MST
  • Ends: Monday, September 4th at 11:59pm MST
  • Offer: Stream 1,200+ classes - FREE!
Click on this link:

I've worked out which classes I want to watch!
Have fun!


A Time to Plant

With the demise of four magazines that used to publish my craft work, it was time to look around to see what other publications might be interested in my projects. I didn't have far to look because right in my own State, "Down Under Quilts" is produced! I liked what I saw in their magazines, so decided to offer my "Time to Plant" quilt to them.

I was of course delighted that they wanted to publish it!

It's a display of seed packets, so with our Spring just a week away, it's a great time to think about what to plant!

I tried Tete-de-boeuf stitch for the eggplant.

I love the Campanula above, as it's three dimensional with the top flap of the bell a separate piece.

The quilt has lots of texture with Perle thread embroidery.

Palestrina Knot stitch has become my "GoTo" stitch for felt work.

The pumpkin is one of my favourites:

Have I told you how much I enjoy working with felt?????

Turnip isn't my favourite vegetable, but I love how this one looks with its rows of Palestrina:

The pattern is in Issue 180 of Down Under Quilts. 

I sent off two quilts to a different publisher this week and had to spend DAYS on all the instructions and patterns to get them ready. It sure didn't feel like a very productive week with so little stitching done! I have another commissioned quilt to make but it has a long deadline, so I put off starting that as I really felt the need to make some QUICK projects. 

I use pot stands (hot pads/trivets or whatever you like to call them) constantly when I'm cooking. I did have two very pretty melamine ones, but they were chipped, scratched and with bits broken off, so it was really time to send them off to the bin where they belonged. I had a light-bulb moment and remembered those bits and pieces of orphan blocks I had stashed away. 

It was very quick and simple to cut two layers of batting, sandwich a piece of Insulbright in between, then place the block and backing on the outside. 

 A quick quilting line or two, add some binding, and I now have half a dozen lovely pot stands ... and the great pleasure of using up some bits and pieces, and achieving a LOT in a very short time.

I've also made some very attractive ones to put on my Craft Stall at the Retreat at which I will be teaching, but there are more than enough photos in this post, so they can wait till next time!


Free Block of the Month Wall Quilt - Block 8

For some people, "discipline" is a dirty word. In these days of "I can do what I like, when I like, and how I like", personal discipline has largely disappeared from our society.

But not so for those who love God. He has asked us to "Clothe ourselves with discipline", because He knows that this is the life that will satisfy us best, make us most productive, and make us a blessing to others. 

As you can see, "Discipline" is the theme for this month's block of the month free pattern,

So, chosen bv God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you.  Clothe yourself with discipline." 
Col 3:12-14

You can find the free pattern here in my Craftsy Store.

I seem to have spent the whole week writing up patterns. I have three quilts nearing the stage where they are ready to send off for publication. While in themselves the quilts are not complex, they have lots of different parts, and so there are pages and pages of details that I have to think about and try to write up in a way that can be easily understood. By the end of the week, I needed a break from them so that I can come back refreshed in a couple of days and pick up anything that is unclear, inaccurate or missed altogether!

My break has come in the form of starting on two cushion covers. I was given some beautiful Japanese fabric which has motifs designed to be used individually, not in yardage. They cried out to be made into cushions for our Family Room. One of our daughters has been in Japan for more than 30 years, so we have some of their amazing dolls scattered throughout our home, so these cushions will fit in perfectly. 

I've started the process and have prepared the appliques. They are going to look great on our grey lounge suite. With just the backing and binding to do, I am hopeful they will soon be on show!

Have a happy week!

The cardboard and glue phobia

Some years ago we lived much closer to the South Pole, where it was cold and windy. We had a separate garage which was a very bleak place to be in the evening in the middle of Winter.  That's where my husband was relegated to work on his electronics hobby!

The alternative of working with soldering irons and electronic bits and pieces all over the lounge room wasn't on the agenda of this houseproud wife. 

Needless to say, interest in that hobby waned. One day a friend offered some good advice: "You need to do something with your hands. You are using your brain all day teaching students and need to do some handwork to relax."

At the time, we had a male colleague who was very good at tapestry - so good he had won prizes for his work. So hubby decided to take a leaf out of his book and a new hobby was born. He took to tapestry like a duck to water and enjoyed "painting with thread". 

He was so prolific that we spent a fortune on framing in the first year! I needed to slow him down a bit, so the suggestion was made that he tackle cross-stitch ... and he liked that even better ... and I could do things with the finished project other than framing.

And so began a number of years of beautiful cross-stitches being produced.  They became cushions and calendars, and box covers and wall-hangings. They made ideal gifts - for the many students' weddings, for the family, for friends ... and some I liked so much I refused to give them away! 

But then there was that kit! It was a beautiful fan and listed amongst the requirements to complete the project: "Cardboard and glue".  Those words were enough to shut my mind down and to put the beautiful completed cross-stitch in a drawer 
... for a very l-o-n-g time!

Fast-forward a decade and I saw that project in the drawer (yet again!!!). I've used cardboard and glue hundreds of time, so what was the hang-up? Paper craft may not be my favourite but I really needed to do something about completing that kit after all these years ... and get over my phobia. Would you believe it only took me an hour to put it all together. Why oh why was I so stupid and left this beautiful piece uncompleted when I could have been enjoying its beauty for the last ten years!

Unfortunately hubby's eyes deteriorated and he couldn't see to do cross-stitch so hasn't done many at all since this beautiful fan. With successful cataract operations, he sometimes says he would like to get back into the hobby again.

The moral in the story of course is to tackle things head on and don't be stupid like me!
And yes, all the above are my husband's lovely work!

Happy stitching!

Free Block of the Month Wall Quilt - Block 7

This month's block in the free Block of the Month Wall Quilt
is all about 'humility'.

So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you. Dress yourself in humility.  
Colossians 3:12-14

There's a little bit of stitching and some pretty flowers:

I picked up a packet of these tiny wooden coat hangers some time ago. They sat in the drawer waiting for just the right project, so of course one of them had to appear on this wall hanging.

I hope you enjoy stitching this block.

You can find the free pattern here in my Craftsy Store. 

Another thing I had in a drawer was this beautiful red fabric given to me by a dear friend. With a bit of black, and white, (with a hint of green), it turned into my pair of "Petals and Points" Cushions.

The pattern is in Issue 36 No 2 of Handmade Magazine.

Winter tends to put me in hibernation mode, even though we live in the sub tropics!, so the production line has been pretty slow lately. However last week I did get a bit of a "go on" and completed a quilt and did some decent work on another - secret projects so no photos yet.

Now I'm waiting on the postman to bring me some special fabric. I can feel another quilt coming on!

Happy stitching!

More Fun with Felt

 In my last post I told you about the "Fun with Felt" class I will be teaching at the Creative Craft Retreat later in the year. The class has limited numbers so that I can give individual guidance to the ladies. This means they will have a wide range of choice, both of design, and felt and thread colours, rather than everyone doing the same thing.

I am going to encourage them to choose their design before they arrive so that they don't waste the first hour trying to make up their minds which one to embroider!

I was going to email them a dozen or so designs that I have drawn, from which they can choose ... but how boring is it to see a black and white drawing on a computer screen!?!   

I decided it would be much better to show them worked examples, so I've been having my own 'fun with felt' time and been stitching some of them:

We will be working on a small rectangle of felt which can be put on a bag, or Ipad or Journal cover or made into a needlecase or pincushion - ideas only limited by one's imagination. 

I am really hooked on felt at the moment!

Candy from Capetown recently sent me two photos of block of the month projects that she has completed. Here's "Keys to Contentment" from a couple of years ago:

and last year's free pattern "You are Blessed":

Hasn't Candy done a lovely job! Now she is starting on this year's "Hand-picked Wardrobe". If you want to join in this free Block of the Month programme, all the patterns from the last six months are still available and will remain free until the end of the year.

I hope you are having as much fun with your stitching as I am.