This blog should be called "The Adventures of a Fabric Junkie!". I am passionate about fabric, threads, colours and textures. I can record my crazy quilting, sane quilting, embroidery and everything else that I consider important in my life.

Photo shows my block for the Hurricane Katrina fund-raising quilt "All That Jazz".

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Southern Cross Crazies Christmas postcards finished

Today I took a sickie from work and made four dozen Spring Rolls for a Chinese themed dinner party we are having on Saturday, cleaned the kitchen, pulled up some weeds from between my bulbs and then finished these seven Christmas themed fabric postcards.   One of the two vertical ones I will keep for myself but I'm not sure which one I like the best yet.  There were seven participants in this swap so I hope the other girls like what I have done for them. Here are the photos.......and before anyone tells me, I KNOW that the reflection of Santa and his reindeers are going the wrong way to the actual silver charm ones, LOL.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Rebecca's cq bibs in the CQI FFT18 Swap

I have joined the Fabulous First Timers 18 round robin, (FFT18 RR) and for the last month I have been sewing on Bec's bibs.  Bec made two bib shaped blocks, one cream and the other BLINDINGLY bright.  They will go on the front of singlet tops when she gets them back.

I chose the bright one to work on but had trouble getting going because of the large floral patch of bright stylised flowers.  First of all I chose to sew in one strand of DMC cotton with 2 strands of Kreinik Blending Filament but it was too heavy.  I unpicked the flower and did it again but by half way through I could see that one strand of Rajmahal Art Silk with two strands of the Kreinik was still too heavy.  Finally, I stitched the whole thing in just the two strands of Kreinik Blending Filament and it was fine.

Bec had used a huge piece of floral fabric which swallowed up the embroidered flower so I took the liberty of adding another piece of fabric in the same orange colour as another flower which had also become lost.  The two together blended well so then I put some metallic gold lace along the two seams and added little irridesent blue flower beads.

I didn't take Bec's fabric from under the orange piece because I thought that if she had particular ideas for the large floral piece then she could unpick the orange piece and get back to what she wanted.  I remembered the Golden Rule of Round Robins - never do anything to someone else's block which can't be undone by the owner later.  Fortunately Bec loved the orange bit so I was lucky and it will stay now.  Here are the photos of the block - naked and dressed, LOL.

The two photos at the top are of the naked and dressed block and below is a close-up of the embroidery (long and short stitch and blanket stitch) with the Kreinik thread plus Kreinik very fine braid for the outlines.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Finally Finished Taylia's quillow

Last Christmas I made quillows for three grandchildren - Trucks and Construction Vehicles for Jesse, Dinasaurs for Beau and Baby Animals for Lola. I ran out of time to finish Taylia's but she has been very patient and I have finished it in time for her 12th birthday next week.  

Here are photos of the front and the back of the cushion.  The front (right) shows Taylia with the Janome sewing machine that we gave her for her 10th birthday.  While the machine is hers and she uses it whenever she comes to sleep-over, it lives in my studio.  

The back shows her on the new bike that she got for her 11th birthday from her parents. She was one very happy little Vegemite when she got that bike to replace her old one which was too small.  

Here is the quilt itself with the twelve photos which are in no particular order, I stitched them together so that the colours blended together well and added a coloured button on each corner to anchor the front of the quilt to the back. Several of the blocks have scraps of fabric from dresses that I have made for her over the years, including a smocked romper when she was 6 months old and a flowergirl's dress when she was 3.  I made sure that I included photos of two very big happenings in her life, the births of her little brother with she was 6 and her little sister when she was 10.

Saturday, September 03, 2011

1956 Fabric Stash from Aunty Amy

I met my cousin Jackie for lunch this week and she gave me another box of treasures from Aunty Ame's stash. For those who haven't read my previous blogs, Aunty Ame died in March 1970 and her boxes of fabrics, trims and laces ended up with my cousin who has kept them all these years just as they were 40 years ago.  Aunty Ame was my Mum's eldest sister and made dolls' clothes for Pedigree and Roddy dolls for a man who owned several toy shops around Perth and Fremantle in the 1950s and 1960s.

The contents of this box of tricks also included patterns for dolls' clothes cut from newspaper - dated 26th September 1956!!! I didn't know that before she made the dolls' clothes, she obviously did alterations for people so included in the box was the complete circular bottom 6 inches of a wedding dress with the hem on one edge. It had been shortened for someone and was a beautiful ivory satin fabric with a tiny rib pattern, perfect for crazy quilting.

Perhaps the greatest treasure as far as I was concerned were several cut-out bodices for Pedigree Walky-Talky doll size dolls where my aunt had probably cut out eight at a time and only needed seven.  There were lots of taffetas, satins, crepes, georgettes, voiles and unknown rayon type fabrics among the scraps and never having seen the light of day in 40-50 years, they were as bright and crisp as the day they were put in the box.  The only casualty was a gorgeous piece of grey voile fabric with a floral design in black flocking. The flocking had disintegrated into fine black "sooty" powder in some parts and landed all over my table, my clothes and the other materials in the box........rather than breathe in a lung-full of black flocking, I reluctantly threw that out.

It is so nice to meet Jackie and reminisce over our Aunty Ame, her boxes of iron-on transfers, cupboards of fabrics and drawers of laces and braids.  She was also a talented pianist with a dance band and was a wonderful cook. I can't believe it is 41 years since she brightened our lives with her lively personality and interesting stories which may or may not have been true.  Perhaps the best part was the smell - that fantastic smell of material from 1950s when the lid was taken off the box.  Sadly, now that the material has been ironed and allowed to breathe the fresh air again, the smell has gone - but it was Heaven while it lasted!!!