Friday, November 23, 2007

Bugs, Bush, balls and a bag!

Why hello! It feels like I haven't been here for a while. In fact it even looks different as I type this in. When did the posting graphics change I wonder!! How bad would I have been at posting every day in November....

We have been through the wars in this house this week with a stinking dose of gastro affecting every member of the household! But after a couple of days of loafing about at home we're all back to normal.

Dancing

Nothing a little dancing to Hi-5 won't fix!

Before we succumbed to the nasty bug, we had a very busy Sunday with two big family functions during the afternoon.

The first was a large gathering at a park with my Mother's family to celebrate what would have been my late Grandfather's 100th Birthday. My Aunt has put together an amazing booklet filled with our family history dating right back to the 1600's. I discovered that aside from English, Irish and Scottish ancestry, my maternal Great Great Great Grandfather was an American. Would you believe I share a common ancestor with the current President of the USA!

From there we rushed off to McClelland Park. My Brother-in-law Nik was one of 35 finalists in the McClelland Sculpture Award whose winner was announced shortly after we arrived. Sadly I missed the announcement as the little darlings needed to go to the toilet!

Playing with the sculptures

We did a brief wander around the gorgeous park but everyone was wilting under the very, very hot sun.

Playing on the sculptures

After checking out Uncle Nik's work 'We Refugees', we decided to take off.

We Refugees

Sculpture

The sculptures will be there until July so if you are in Melbourne go and have a look. It really is a beautiful gallery and park and the sculptures are wonderful.

I have found some time to do a little bit of crafting.

Carol's bag

This is for my other Brother-in-law's girlfriend whose Birthday party we're off to tomorrow night.

Carol's bag

Carol is a beautiful Lebanese girl so I wanted to make something really striking. The floral is from one of the new Kaffe Fassett fabric ranges which are just stunning.

Carol's bag

I have many projects underway including aprons, christmas ornaments and other gifts and will hopefully have more to show you soon. Enjoy the weekend!

Friday, November 16, 2007

Secret Quilting Business

I had a special project to complete this week.

Doll Quilt

Something that had to be done quickly.

Doll Quilt

I really enjoyed doing it.

Doll Quilt

But as it's a big surprise for someone.

Doll Quilt

I can't tell you what it is - or I'd have to kill you!!

No seriously, it's a big surprise for someone very special and I will reveal all when it arrives at its destination.

Now I'm off to start 9 Christmas decorations for the Freshly Blended Holiday Ornament swap. I have a lovely group of women from America, Canada and even an Aussie girl to swap with. And lucky me because one of them is one of my favourite bloggers house on hill road. I can't wait to see what will turn up in the mail.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

And the winner is.......

I promised Chloe she could pull the name out of the bowl so I had to wait until she got up this morning!

'Nicole' you are the winner!!

You wrote "wow i love your 'apple & pear' fabric, its just too cute for words. thanks for the apron tutorial :o) you made it so easy i think im off to spotlight next week to get something pretty to make your apron, it will be the first 1/2 one i have as i usually prefer the full ones."

And this is your prize.

Winner's Apron Frill

As you like full aprons, hopefully you will enjoy this one!

So please email me your address so I can send the apron on its way to its new home.

And I had planned to show the other apron but it just didn't get finished. I had a nearly 2yr old who refused to sleep today which put the mozz on any sewing plans I had. And would you believe tomorrow our power will be off ALL day. Yes from about 8am- 4pm. So I think I will camp out at my mother's all day.

Anyway I WILL tell you what I am working on.

Winner's Apron

This is the first of several aprons I have designed.

Winner's Apron Frill

I plan to make some to sell and eventually want to make them into patterns.

Winner's Apron

So any feedback will be greatly appreciated. Thanks for joining in and don't forget for those who are interested, the Freshly Blended Holiday Ornament swap is open until November 9.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

A Fine Feast!

Well you asked for it!

It was a gorgeous sunny day so we ate outside. The children all got on really well and had a ball. The adults got to sit down and have a glass or two of champagne and we all enjoyed a yummy lunch.

Cup Day Lunch

We stopped at 3pm to watch 'the big race' and then enjoyed a coffee and sweets!

Sweets

Poor kids, I made them wait until I had taken a photo - they were dying to pounce on the meringues!

I hope those who had the day off enjoyed it - our day was a big success!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Good Intentions!

With every good intention I said I would choose the winner of the apron giveaway on Sunday night. Well obviously it is now Monday night and I still haven't. Tomorrow is Melbourne Cup Day and the kids and Daddy were home today as the schools often make it a long weekend and hubby usually takes the day off. So together we prepared for a Cup Day party we're having tomorrow and I have had to drop all sewing (put it away) and clean, scrub and cook.

I have now decided I will leave the drawing of the competition until Wednesday when I have finished the new aprons and can show you them properly. In the meantime, just so you don't think I'm completely useless I can show you a little sneak peak of one of the new aprons which I personally think are well worth the wait!

Apron Giveaway sneak peak

If you are wondering why I am saying 'aprons' you will have to wait until Wednesday and I will reveal all.

Now I'm off to cook a lemon tart. We are having a barbeque with lamb cutlets done in cumin, garlic and lemon juice, chicken marinated in sesame oil and soy, sausages (of course), chargrilled sweet potato, zucchini, asparagus and red and yellow peppers, tomato, basil and bocconcini salad and potato salad. I will prepare a yummy antipasto to start and have already roasted some marinated mushrooms - mmmmmm! My girlfriend is bringing her delicious pavlova and the kids will get some banana and choc chip muffins. Not a bad spread all round topped off with a few bottles of champagne - it is the races after all!

So I'll be back on Wednesday with a winner and some aprons and hopefully I'll back a winner tomorrow!!

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Button Bounty

Goodness what a lot of apron love there has been. I had a grand total of 508 visitors on Friday which is a little overwhelming really. I am enjoying seeing all the other fantastic tutorials coming up each day - a brilliant idea for all of us who would prefer to make our own gifts this year.

I've been tagged by my mate Jade for a craft meme. And as I answer I will throw in a few photos of my freebie button haul. There was actually a lot more in there than I expected and these are a few of my favourites!

1. When did you start to create and make craft?

Not sure but definitely under the age of 10. I was always making stuff for my Barbies and my dolls house. I remember the first thing I knitted was a bright yellow and red vest - very 70's so I must have been about 10. I don't recall ever finishing it. I got my first sewing machine for my 18th Birthday and prior to that I used my Mum's. During the early 80's I used to race home from work and sew something up to wear out that night. Most of it without a pattern and it can't have been well finished - but I thought I looked great and at least different to everyone else. I spent many hours knitting in the 80's - remember all those fabulous multi coloured jumpers! I was also mad on drawing and up until my early 20's did a lot of painting and drawing - something I really want to get back into.

The Cream Buttons

2. Why did you start creating?

My Mother was an avid sewer/knitter/crocheter and made pretty much everything we wore. I can remember sitting patiently waiting for an outfit to be finished before we went off to a party - which drove my Dad completely mad! She also used to make all our doll's clothes too - some of which I still have. She was given huge bags of fabric from a friend who worked in some kind of textile factory and I used to spend hours playing with them - just like I do now with my fabrics. So I guess being constantly surrounded by it encouraged my interest and desire to create. I also had a lot of craft books and did things like macrame - very groovy.

The Green Buttons

3. Why do you create?

I think because I have to. I just LOVE making stuff. From the creative idea to the cutting, constructing and completing I get so much pleasure. I have so many ideas swirling around that will probably never see the light of day. The discovery of craft blogging has had a huge impact on my creative output though and I have been extremely productive this year. And that in turn gets those creative juices flowing - such constant inspiration! But you all think like that too don't you?

The Black/Metallic Buttons

4. What do you create?

I like to sew bags, aprons, some clothing, quilts and other bits and pieces. I love to knit but in fits and bursts and I occasionally do a bit of crocheting. I also really enjoy embroidery and hand sewing like quilting. I would love to be better at making softies but they are a bit too fiddly for my patience. I really enjoy the swap process as it challenges me to come up with something that suits my swap partner but reflects my personal style as well. I like making things up as I go along and don't often use patterns.

The Yellow/Red Buttons

5. Has this changed since you began crafting?

Not a lot but my interest in quilting is new (it's just slightly addictive). I don't make as many clothes as I would like to and I have a huge passion for aprons that I didn't have before but maybe that's just fashion. I also like doing various crafts with my children now that they are old enough to really participate. I hope I can do more drawing and painting one day.

Treasure

So Amy, Fiona, Leslie, Liz, and Cathy you are all tagged. Tell us about craft in your life.

I have been madly sewing yesterday and today and will have a few new aprons to show you tomorrow. I will also draw and announce the winner of my giveaway. I knew that would bring a few of you lurkers out of hiding and it's exciting to see several of you are from Melbourne. Now, to bed...

Friday, November 2, 2007

Gifts Galore and a Give Away!

Just a quick post to let you know about this!



Sew Mama Sew have collected a huge amount of tutorials and ideas for you to make Christmas/Holidays presents. And I am really thrilled to have been asked to share my apron tutorial. So go on over and check it out.

And to all those who are visiting me for the first time - welcome! To celebrate all the new visitors (nearly 400 of you today!!!) I think I should do a give away. Write me a quick hello and I'll draw out a winner on Sunday night - November 4th.

Mia's Apron

I think the give away really needs to be an apron. I'm working on a few different apron designs so I'll surprise you with something new.

I'd better get to it!