Sunday 26 July 2009

Unexpected Outing

This is what I was supposed to be doing today……..

But…yesterday morning we heard about this on the local radio…….

What to do? What to do? Was there ever any doubt? We're not very good at staying home.
So… we headed off to Crookwell to visit two Edna Walling Gardens. Edna Walling is Australia’s most famous garden designer from the 40s and 50s. I have had this book of hers for many years (picked up for $2 – absolute bargain). Quite collectible now I believe.

Yesterday was a beautiful blue day, but today was grey and bleak, a big coat and scarf day.
Edna’s books have beautiful black and white photos, so I thought I would do the same as I think they suit the winter look of the garden.
We firstly visited “Kiloren” owned by Rob and Jennie Churchill. The house was built in 1951 and the garden designed at the same time. Very little has been changed.

We have wanted to visit these two gardens for ages but have never been able to get over there when they were open.

Don't you just want to explore through this gate.
Edna’s trademarks are low stone walls, silver birch and solid wisteria walks.
Lovely, natural looking country gardens.
Winter is a lovely time to see the bare bones and structure of the gardens.

After “Kiloren” we went into Crookwell to have lunch and found this homely café. It is run by a couple in their 70s who give just wonderful service and old fashioned homestyle cooking. The building is full of collectibles on display.

Crookwell has a lovely main street. Unlike many country towns it does not appear to be in decline at all and for a Sunday was really busy. There were a couple of lovely gift shops and I found my little extra to go with the wash cloth swap. Very happy.
While we were having lunch it started to rain – steady, set in rain – so we abandoned the idea of visiting the second garden until another time.

So, we had a lovely drive home on quiet country roads in the bleak weather. It was lovely. We really enjoy being out and about in bleak weather. We had quite a bit of dirt to go on and some of it was quite slippery. I’m just glad we were snug in the car and not on the bike.
And yes…. I still have to do the BAS ***by Tuesday*** Aaaah!! (It might just be a day or so late.) Shhhhh! Don’t tell.

Saturday 25 July 2009

Feeling Better Now

You know what they say about the best laid plans of mice and men? Well, I had them last Saturday (yes, I know, a week ago) to do lots of sewing and knitting. Well, I came down with the nasty tummy bug doing the rounds and got nothing done:<(

On the Sunday we had planned to go to Rylstone with the Historic Car Club for our Christmas in July lunch, and as Mick has missed out the last couple of years we went, despite me still being a bit off colour. It was the most glorious blue day and was even a little warm. It is a really pretty drive over there and the streetscape is lovely with old sandstone buildings. No, I haven’t got any piccies – blame my not feeling the best. I am so pleased we still went. We haven’t been to any Club runs for about 6 months and it was really good to see everyone.

I have been doing more wash cloth knitting in preparation for the Wash Cloth Swap. I tried some that I wasn’t really happy with, so they will be mine, and have now completed the one I will send off. It turned out quite well. I think I will do more of these as they are quick and easy.

This one is the first I did and it is for me in a waffle pattern, which is very effective - even on the back. I love the colour - it suits our bathroom well. The yarn is unusual – 75% recycled cotton and 25% acrylic. It will be interesting to see how it wears.

I decided to try and do a stash busting quilt for Mum’s 80th. I found a nice pattern by Michelle Marvig in Quilters Companion for a medallion quilt and have pulled out these fabrics. I’m having a think. (Click on the photo to see the detail better.) Another alternative would be to do a quilt using 80 different fabrics. I would be able to come up with the number, but what design? I don’t know. I’ll procrastinate for a while.

It was patchwork today and I have finished the embroidery on the blue wren. I should have it finished very soon.

So, after a slow start, I have actually done something. Lots more to do though.

Thursday 16 July 2009

Le Tour

We are taking quite an interestin in the Tour de France at the moment. We don't have a TV, so don't get to see any of it, just hear it on the radio and see the papers.

The reason for our interest is twofold:

1. Mark Cavendish has won 4 stages (to date). Mark is from the Isle of Man and we really like the Isle of Man.

2. Mark Cavendish's lead out rider is Bathurst's very own Mark Renshaw, who Cav has stated is the best lead out rider in the world!

When Mark Renshaw was still at school he did work experience at the engineering firm where Mick worked and was so good Mick (who was the hirer and firer) gave him an apprenticeship. But....he was too good a cyclist.... and left the job. He has done well, an Olympic Gold Medal in 2000 at Sydney, before going professional. It think it was a better option than being a sheet metal worker.

Go Mark and Mark and Team Columbia.

Sunday 12 July 2009

Blue Wrens and Lovely Things

I had a great time today doing the appliqué on the blue wren. Yes, it is just going to be a wallhanging and I’ll make a separate quilt.

I just have to do a bit of embroidery to finish off the panel before doing the borders etc. I’m quite pleased with the way it is coming up.
I also finished knitting my wash cloth. I do like it and the yarn matches our towels and bathroom so well.

Mick picked up his old BMW bike from our mate Norm today. There had still been an electrical fault and Mick just couldn’t find it. He spent hours and hours looking for it. It just needed a fresh set of eyes and Norm has now found and fixed the incorrectly wired fitting. So, the bike should be up and running and registered in the not too distant future and we will be able to start using it. It is our hope to take this bike and sidecar over to the Isle of Man next time we go.

Norm and Cath sent this little gift home for me. They bought it at an auction last week in a box of stuff.
What a lovely thing. A Hussef. (I hope I have spelt that correctly.) My dad still has his from his army days, although his is quite different. This will definitely find a home in my collection of bits and pieces.
I bought another lovely thing yesterday when I was in town. I noticed in the “Garage Sales” section of the local paper that the second hand book shop had 50% off everything. I had been eyeing off an old 1950’s Singer Sewing Book, but have been too ikey to pay for it. So, I went straight to that section and it was not there!!! Mind you, it is quite a while since I have been in there. Anyway, I had a good rummage in the craft section and buried on the bottom shelf I found this. A Singer Sewing Book dated 1972.
The dust jacket is somewhat tattered, but the book is in perfect condition. I love the section on how to use all those wonderful old Singer attachments. I have LOTS of Singer attachments. Not only do they fit my old Singers (I have my Grandmother’s 1918 model and a 222K Featherweight and a couple of others), they also fit my Elna and Janome. I’m looking forward to having a play one day.

Over the Rainbow

It has been a lovely sunny morning here this morning…..and then…..there was a noise…..rain…..I rushed out the back to take off the washing I had just hung and was confronted by this.....

The most beautiful full double rainbow……and to top it off….. you can just see the moon setting between the two rainbows.
I couldn’t get the full rainbow in my photo, but just take it from me, it was stunning.

Just after I took the photos it was gone.
On the crafting front, I have been quite busy, believe it or not.
Although this doesn't count as a July finish, I have finished my second knitted square for Wrapped with Love and have delivered them to the local library. They are having a "Knit In" on 7 August. The wool was just long enough, I'd only have a couple of metres left. This was finished earlier than expected (my knitting at Mick's Dad's project) as we went in to watch the first session of the Ashes cricket match.
I have also knitted two more short scarfs (I'll try to take photos later today) and have started another scarf in lovely purples (so that I have some knitting for the State of Origin Football on Wednesday).
I also stumbled across a new swap about to start. Jodie of Jellywares is having a wash cloth swap. I have never made one, so decided there is no time like the present. I found some patterns on Ravelry and bought some cotton and have made a start on one for me as a trial. Thoroughly enjoying it. No photos, as I will probably use this pattern for the swap.

Yesterday I finally was able to go to our little patchwork group again, after missing three sessions. It was nice to catch up with everyone again and see what they have been up to. Although it is supposedly a patchwork group, a couple were embroidering (including me getting back into the Verandah Views blocks) and most were knitting. None were doing patchwork.
I did a show and tell of all my bits and pieces I brought home from the Isle of Man. I think I will have to make a pincushion from the Roof Pattern and then show the others. When I get around to it....
Mick is at work today (although hopefully knocking off at lunch), so I am starting my Blue Wren panel. I'm starting to think I'll just make it into a wallhanging and then make a separate quilt that will suit Mum's bedroom better. We'll see.

Monday 6 July 2009

She's Got Mail

My Mum has her 80th birthday in the middle of October. I've been planning to make her a quilt for this occasion for some time.

As she loves blue wrens I've been eyeing off an applique wall hanging advertised in the patchwork magazines from Dragonfly Fabrics in Darwin. Finally, I got around to ordering it and some extra of the border fabric. (This was when I realised it is only 3 months till the big day - mild panic attack happening.)

On Friday it arrived safe and sound. (Very exciting, as I normally don't mail order any supplies.) The pattern is by Pat and Helen Godden and the colours used in the ads and the kit are slightly different to the ones pictured on the pattern cover.

The grand plan is to do the applique panel and then expand on it to become a double bed quilt. How I am going to do that is still one of life's mysteries. I'm sure I'll come us with somthing at the time.


It's minus 3 degrees C and foggy out there.

Do I really have to go to work today?

Please Mum, can I stay home?

Saturday 4 July 2009

Lolly Legs

Just a quick post as we have an overnight visitor arriving some time today and I NEEEED to do a big tidy up. If I don’t do this post now, it won’t happen for a while.

My little niece had her 2nd birthday yesterday and I decided last week to make her a softie doll that was featured in the latest Homespun magazine (No 73 Vol 10.6). It is designed by Fiona Lech of Dear Fii. I have heaps of magazines and it is very rare for me to make something featured straight away.

This little lady was called “Pepper” in Homespun, but I have named my version “Lolly Legs".

I gave myself 2 nights before the birthday to make her…..and then realised I had a hair appointment on Wednesday night…..therefore, just 1 night!!! I sewed like crazy and got her done on time.

As my brother and his family often go camping or stay at the property where he works, I decided to make Lolly Legs her own sleeping bag. It is very wide to accommodate the skirt, but I think it turned out not too bad.

Lolly Legs and her sleeping bag were made entirely from my stash (except for the heart buttons), which was also good. The sleeping bag is actually a poly cotton blend, but for this it won't matter, and it used up a couple of pieces entirely.

Mick’s verdict of Lolly Legs is “That would have to be the ugliest thing I have ever seen!” Oh well, I didn’t make it for him and I hope the recipient has a little more positive attitude.

As it turned out, I didn’t need to do the mad rush, as I won’t get to see the birthday girl for about a week.

And a bonus....... I already have a finish for July.