Saturday, 22 March 2014


My mum is my best friend when it comes to quilt buddies and she is always inspiring me by what she makes and how perfectly she makes things. As a young girl, i can remember my Mum making me all sorts of things on her classic Bernina (which was given to her as a wedding prezzie by her Mum in the early 60's is still rocking on today!) from clothes for my teddy to fancy dress princess outfits for school plays.

Today i just wanted to share with you my beautiful Mum's latest quilting creation and I'm linking up with Lorna for Let's bee social and AmandaJean for Finish it up Friday


Living in Australia means that we live with bushfire. It can be our friend and our foe. It is part of who we are and has shaped the vegetation and environment that we live in today. Fire diversity has promoted biodivesity in many of the most beautiful parts of our land. Living in the Blue Mountains, my folks have survived several bush fires including the latest last Spring which destroyed so many houses nearby. Both my husband and i have careers in bushfire research, so Mums latest creation is close to our hearts. This is super special Mum!

Inspired by a table runner by Elizabeth Long in the Patchwork and Quilting magazine, titled Bushfire,  Mums 'Bushfire' creation has been made using paper piecing, but she used interfacing instead and found that to work a treat. Featuring little geckos and quilted burnt stick and shrubs (which she did with her walking foot), the colours reflect fire and the Australian bush. Mum made this table runner as a gift for my husbands folks who live in Portugal, another country where bushfire's are part of the culture and environment.

Next week, we will take the table runner to Portugal to give to our Portuguese family and i feel our suitcase is chock full of quilted goodies....what a give and to have made......

Thanks Mum, it's truly lovely and i'm sure they will absolutely love it!

Finish it up Friday

Wednesday, 19 March 2014

Dreaming of Jacarandas

Hip hip hooray! It's finished. Waahooooo!

This quilt was inspired by a painting by Australian artist, Ken Done called Jacaranda reef . The colours in this painting drew me to it instantly and i knew i had to at least have a print of it on my wall.

When i found some beautiful, floral, Kaffe Fassett fabrics a couple of years ago that had some of the colours in them, i knew the colours would lure me to make something based on the Jacaranda inspiration. If you've never seen a Jacaranda tree before, when in flower they are covered in the most spectacular purple/blue, which fall and cover the ground, creating fields of  'purple snow'. Just gorgeous!

When my husband and i decided we were going to visit Portugal this year, i knew this was my opportunity to make a special quilt for my mother and father in-law, Rosa Maria and Ze Carlos, who live there. I got out my notebook and fabrics and came up with a quilt top, based on string piecing. I had plenty of blues, greens and purples in my stash to match and felt that the strips would still show those beautiful florals of Kaffe's.

To be honest, i didn't think it would take me nearly as long as it did, but after several months of sewing strips together while my little boy slept after lunch, it was finished.

Measuring just under 2x2m, my friend Carol Ikin in the Blue Mountains quilted it for me on her long arm machine using swirls in line green (thanks've done a beautiful job).

For the back i chose to use some of the pieced string triangles left over to join together one of my favourite Kaffe Fassett fabrics with a green and white spot pattern. I machine-bound the quilt using some pretty blue fabric left over, hoping it will be super sturdy and ready for lots of use....
It has turned out to be my absolute favourite quilt so far and will be hard to let go of.

But i'm happy knowing it's going to my dear Portuguese family. Best wishes Rosa Maria and Ze Carlos.....i do hope you'll love it!

Linking up with Lorna for Let's Bee Social and Gemma for I Quilt Thursdays @ Pretty Bobbins

Saturday, 15 March 2014

Last but not least.....

And finally in the placemat series, and quite possibly my favourite.

I made this placemat using some scraps left over from a quilt i've made for my MIL (stay tuned....i'm in the process of binding this one so will add a post on it shortly). These are my favourite colours at the moment and i really like the straight 1/4 inch quilting i did with my walking foot.

The seams got a little bulky where the triangles meet, but it was the perfect way to use up the leftover string pieced triangles.

Best wishes in floral

Have you ever had some fabric that you just thought was too pretty to cut up into small pieces? Well, this was certainly the case for me. I purchased this fabric on sale and thought it was so pretty that one day i'd make it into something beautiful.

When i pulled it out of the stash earlier in the week, i wasn't really sure how to use it, but imagined it was the perfect combination of floral and pretty colours for a placemat of some sort for my aunt Fatima.

So, in order to keep the focus on the floral patterns, i haven't added too much patchwork. Just a little splash of aqua. Its very simple and in some ways i wish i'd tried more, but i do like the focus on the floral fabric.

In keeping with the floral theme, i've quilted running flowers (i can't remember the name of the pattern), which are a favourite pattern of mine at the moment.

Best wishes Fatima!

Tuesday, 11 March 2014

Whats on my inspiration wall?

A couple of things have really inspired me in recent days and i do hope, they will eventually inspire a quilt creation of some sort.

Sochi Patchwork

Did anyone else see the beautiful patchwork based paraphernalia for the Sochi Winter Olympics? I really loved the colours, design and patchwork foundation.... so pretty

Check out the Bosco site for history behind the making of these gorgeous designs....
Bosco patchwork design history
I'm wondering how i could turn this design into a pattern easy to patchwork? Perhaps triangles? Suggestions? I really like the idea of isolation colours by dark to light too.

Mokoh Design Eco Greeting Card

The other thing that has got me pondering how to make a quilt pattern like it is a card i bought the other day. I really like how the colours are grouped and the triangular/diamond shapes that create the blocks of colour..... a little like the Sochi patchwork i guess....

Linking up with Gemma at Pretty Bobbins for I Quilt Thursdays at Pretty Bobbins

Sunday, 9 March 2014

A placemat for Silvia

On my last visit to Portugal, my aunt Silvia, who lives in beautiful Viana do Castelo, gave me a gorgeous embroidered tablecloth. In traditional blue on white linen, embroidered cloth is famous in this region! It's so pretty....

So, i've made her a placemat. And while it isn't nearly as precious as the tablecloth she gave me, it is my favourite so far. I'm hoping it will bring her joy and happiness whenever she has breakie or a meal  on it out on her sunny Viana verandah. I can't wait to give it to her.

The pattern is based on the drunkards path design, but i loved the way Angela Pingel put hers together in Modern Blocks, so i've based the layout on this. This was my second attempt (after a bit of a disastrous first attempt), at sewing curves for the drunkards path, and i must say i'm pretty happy with it. I can highly recommend using templates!

I've done some spiral quilting using my walking foot in the hope of showing off those curves and it turned out well. I like the quilting on the back too (this Kaffe Fassett fabric is one of my favourites, so i like the back as much as the front!). The quilting is nice and close and other than the centre of each spiral, the stitches are ended off only underneath the binding, so it should be nice and durable after many washes.

 Here's hoping Silvia will love it.....

Thursday, 6 March 2014

Portuguese placemats

Over the last few weeks i've been busy making placemats. I want to give something special to my family on our up coming trip to Portugal at the end of the month. They've been a great opportunity to try out a few new techniques and enjoy quilting something that isn't too large.

So each afternoon when my little boy is asleep, i head off to the dining room, where i create and whip up something fresh to give.

This was one of the first and i like the colours and design very much. I based the design on the 'Mondrian' block designed by Jamie Moilanen that i saw in Modern Blocks.

I chose to quilt some spirals on it and had some fun doing them....

The next one i made used some Alexander Henry fabric i had left over from a skirt i'd made my sister for Christmas a couple of years ago.

Making and sewing the uneven strips was harder than i imagined, but i based the layout on the beautiful red 'Two by Six' block designed by Natalie Hardin in Modern Blocks. I think the quilting pattern turned out quite nicely.