Saturday, January 2, 2016

SSCS 2015

I participated in my 4th Chookyblue's Secret Santa Christmas Swap. SSCS 2015 was another success with parcels winging their way from Australia to many parts of the world and parcels flying back here. It is a wonderful way for bloggers overseas to learn more about Australia, and of course the reverse is true.

This year I sent to Diane, The Cheshire Quilter in the UK. I had a lot of fun stalking, reading about her craft groups, renovations, anticipation of new life and more. I couldn't comment because that may have given the game away.
This is what I sent.

The Christmas decoration.

The main presents.

 Pot holders, because Diane bakes.

A shopping bag that folds up. Where Diane lives is getting rid of plastic bags. A very sensible place, if you ask me!!!!

My Secret Santa was Uta from Germany. Uta sent some wonderful presents.

My ornament.

My presents.

Uta picked two designers I admire greatly.
This little sewing bag was on my one day list. It is from Anni Downs' Some Kind of Wonderful book. Uta, it will be well used!

 This is a Gail Pan needle book. Beautifully stitched. Can you see the beaded dragonfly in the packet? I think I will attach it to one of my scissors. Chocolate Santa didn't last long.

Thank you very much, Uta.

Our Christmas was a quiet one this year, just my parents, hubby and me. Our son was with his partner's family for the first time, as it should be.
Next year will be more crowded table with a grandchild expected in March. Something to look forward too.

Take care,

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Sunday Stitchers Christmas Party

The last Sunday in November saw me travelling south to Coomera for our Sunday Stitchers Christmas Party.
Unfortunately I had to leave early for a family function north of where I live, so a fair bit of time was wasted in the car.
Still the time I had with the Stitchers was great.... a lovely bunch of ladies....just wish I could have stayed until the end.

First of all, we can't forget the December birthday girls. Here they are carefully (or should that be painfully) opening each present together. 

 We swap presents. We got our 'name' early this year, but I still managed to be sewing it right down to the wire. I am not a model for organisation. As per usual, the presents were well thought out and very well made. There is a lot of pressure when you know the standard of the work of the recipient.  :-)

 And a lot in inspection of what others got.

 The food table always groans under the volume and deliciousness of the food. Not a time for diets.

 I received from Maree...a pocketed mat for under my machine...filled with extra goodies...and lollies and biscuits and a diary. This mat will be very handy. I have been thinking of making one as I sewed my secret sewing lately. My tools kept dropping off. Now I'll have easy-to-get-to pockets for them.

 We got extras again the year. Lovely ornaments to add to my tree, a pin cushion jar, more lollies and a very useful placemat with engraved cutlery. This will be very well used!

 I gave to Deb a block holder. The embroided centre is a Rosalie Quinlan/Dekker design. I used Lynette Anderson fabric as I know Deb loves her work. I believe it will be well used as Deb has another special project underway.

 I was very pleased she liked it. Now to make one for me!

Plans are underway for next year's meetings and sew alongs....looking forward to it.

take care,

SSCS 2015

I have been doing a lot of secret sewing....anyway that's the reason I'm giving for my lack of posts.
It's been exciting though...lots of stalking to work out if what I wanted to make would suit my recipient.
It has been posted and recieved.
But all I can reveal is what Santa dropped off at my place.

My secret Santa present has the honour of being the only present under the tree at the moment.

This beautiful ornament is now on our tree.

I know this year has been a busy one for the organiser of our international Secret Santa Christmas Swap 2015 - Chookyblue. I believe Jannimary has been the supporting elf this year. So to both ladies a very big Thank You for getting it up and running again this year!

Take care,

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

Brisbane Open House

Brisbane has been holding as 'Open House' weekend in October for a few years now, but we always seemed to be busy and miss out. This year we set the date aside and other things were missed instead.
Some of the houses/buildings need to be booked. They may have size/numbers/parking restrictions. We were late organising our itinerary so next year we will be quicker to book some of these.
Can't complain though as we had a very entertaining day in the city and we saw lots more than we thought. In fact - 3 churches, 1 water reservoir, the base of the old windmill (need to book to go up top), the Grand Masonic Lodge, the General Post Office and the new ABC building.
After which my feet and stomach gave out and we ended up at Ole in Southbank with a pitcher of sangria and tapas.

 The no-longer-needed-but-can-be-hired water reservoirs on Wickham Tce. They would make a very unusual venue for a party.

 The Grand Masonic Lodge. The other floors were also on display with regalia and historical items. The long timber seating was installed via the roof when the building was being constructed. There would be no way any of could be moved now without going out the same way.

 One of the churches - St Andrew's  Uniting Church. Very restrained Art Nouveau.

 The GPO with its odd assortment of buildings attached as the need arose to the original sandstone building.

The news floor of the ABC building. We met people from the radio and television sections, heard how programs and the news are put together and broadcast. We went inside the TV news studio where we saw 'weathergirl' Jenny Woodward's green screen and learnt how it worked.
In all, it was an interesting day.

Take care,

Friday, October 30, 2015

Dressmaking....Who me?

Amongst the secret Christmas sewing, I have been trying out a few dressmaking patterns. Recently, I did a major wardrobe cull as I've lost a bit of weight. Very happy to have lost the weight (and determined to keep it off now) but disappointed to pass on a few items as I really liked them. Still someone else will get better use out of them.
Not a good day for photos.

 A bit lairy, I know, but the 2 on the left will be house clothes.
I tried the patterns out in cheap rayon from East Coast Fabric before I cut into the cotton/linen blends I also got from East Coast. The skirt is in a stretch woven something or other. East Coast are not good on labels. Experienced sewers like my mother would be able to rattle it off easily.
 Me on the other hand ..... strictly amateur!

Still I am happy with how they turned out. I've even worn the skirt out in public!

Take care,

Friday, October 16, 2015

Bathurst Bloggers Meet 2015

After several nervous weeks waiting and preparing, our special visitors came and went.
 It was then time to turn my attention to another much anticipated event - The 2015 Bathurst Bloggers Meet.
I really enjoy meeting this group of the picturesque comfortable accommodation....very well fed by Vicki and her in Anni Downs' Home Patch store.
Unfortunately, my body decided that now the stress of the previous weeks had gone and it could let a cold take hold. I was feeling good until the plane flight. I don't think the pressure on my ears and sinuses helped.
I really really hope I did not pass it on to anyone. I was trying to be careful.
I was very annoyed with myself as I was looking forward to walking with Fiona and talking. Talking is big part of this weekend, naturally. These days when I get a cold I seem to get it in the voice. It is hard to have wonderful conversation when body wants to cough and gag.

Set up time...grab your spot.

 The beautiful weather this year, meant we could sit and sew on the verandah.

This is some of the magnificent show and tell.

 Dinner Saturday night is "Make It, Bake It or Fake It" swap time. I might add the girls were offering to trace their feet if they could get a pair of socks from Georgina like the lucky Fiona received.

 What do bloggers do....why record everything, of course.

 These are just 2 of the finishes from the weekend.

 Kate made this entire pincushion and Trish stayed up late to get all the rows joined in this beautiful quilt top, made from a churn dash block swap.

 There were a lot of other high achievers there too.
Me...I was just happy to sit in my corner and take it all in.

Thank you to everyone who was there!

Take care,

Thursday, September 17, 2015

2015 Warwick Retreat......So Late ....

This post is so late that it's not funny. I've written it in my head and I really thought I had published it. I'm still going to do it as I want to keep on record  this year's retreat.

Same venue -Glenrose Patchwork B&Bs  at Warwick - why change perfection.
Same week - end of June/start of July.
Same people - well almost - One was unable to come, but we made sure she was there in spirit and didn't miss out.
Same lack of photos - the others do it so much better.

The photos will tell the story.

It's always my birthday on retreat. This year I enlisted DH's help to make a little present for everyone. Thread holders made from Silver Ash and Kewila.

 Here was our missing friend - Helen. We made sure she had her spot. Stick Helen came with us to lunch at the Warwick Garden Centre for my birthday. Here I am explaining the menu to her.

 I worked on a project that I had cut out on our first retreat 2 years previously.

Here it is minus the sashings which were put on before I left. It's 'Off Track' by Cluck Cluck Sew.

 De worked very hard to get this Natalie Bird wall hanging finished.

Sandy sped through Lori Holt's Farm Girl Vintage book. Fast worker that one!

 Teresa dug out a project to keep Stick Helen happy.

 Foxy ladies!

The girls even replenished the fruit bowl.


A lucky daughter is getting this Marilyn design.

Sorry Lynda, Alison and Maree. Your work for the week was also fabulous just not recorded properly by this slack photographer.
I didn't think I would be able to go next year as 2016 is a very significant birthday for me and I want to celebrate it with hubby and parents. But! It's a leap year so it moves the the end of the week. I might just be able to go still. Insert smiley face here.

Take care,