Monday 29 April 2024

It’s Done.

Once again I have left my One Monthly Goal until the last moment.  This was also my Chookshed Challenge Number 9, so doubly important to get it achieved.

You may recall that my goal was to complete the Harry Potter donation quilt that had been sitting, cut out, for over twelve months.  I had the flimsy pieced at Scrub Stitchin’.

I’m happy to report today I have found some backing and batting pieces that will work, joined the backing, quilted and bound it.

I used the stars pantograph, as I did in the first version of this quilt that I made last year.

What made me very happy was that I won the bobbin lottery, not once, but twice during the quilting process.  Firstly, I used the last little bit on a bobbin to bast the top of the quilt and ended up with a couple of inches of thread left over.  Then, I was watching my first bobbin, and it ended up stitching right to the end of a row, to the very last stitch, so there was nothing on the bobbin when I ended off.  Phew!

While I’m going, let’s do a round up of this month’s stitching.

My Rainbow Scrap Challenge blocks were completed.

The Split nine patch while at Scrub Stitchin’.

The fish after I returned home.

Now to wait for a week or so until the next pattern is released.  I believe the colour is pink, so some pretty fish next time.

My spiked granny rug has the squares joined together, awaiting the ends to be woven in and the border to be added.

I have stitched some of the appliqué on the batik fish.  Five done, except for the eyes.  They will gradually be caught up when I want something simple to sew.

My Sashiko panels have once again seen the light of day.  The first and second panels are now complete and the third half done.

I progressed my Laundry Basket Spring Mystery Quilt.

The Half Square Triangle Baby Quilt also reached the flimsy stage.

Add to this the swap gift I made for Scrub Stitchin’.

There weren’t many finishes for the month, but several projects have been moved along.

I’ll link up with Deana for the Chookshed Stitchers Challenge, So Scrappy for Rainbow Scrap Challenge and Stories From the Sewing Room for One Monthly Goal.

I know I’m jumping the gun by a day, but I am confident that I will have achieved  my 15 minutes each day.  Some days that was all I did. I’ll be linking at Life in Pieces.

April = 30/30

Year to date = 121/121

Success Rate - 100%

All in all, I'm happy with the month.

Saturday 27 April 2024

Scrub Stitchin’ - Travelling Home

After a simple lunch on Sunday it was time to pack up everything and ship on out.  We didn’t have very far to travel, as we were staying with Miss Jules that evening.  It wasn’t a fast drive, as we had to travel mainly on gravel roads.  It was however rather scenic.
We spent a very pleasant evening around the camp fire.  Chooky and Mr Chooky, as well as Kylie were also there for dinner.
Frank looked quite settled for the night.
After a leisurely breakfast we were back on the road.
More dirt roads to start with.

I seem to have a thing for bladeless windmills this trip.
A quick stop in Gulargambone to check out the sculpture.
A coffee and cake stop in Gilgandra.  This sign out the front of the news agency alerted us to the fact that there was a coffee shop incorporated into it.
Out the back there is a lovely garden area. Behind Mick, that man is chatting to a couple.  We heard the voice and immediately recognised it.  Mick’s aunt and uncle from the north coast were sitting there having coffee.  We had seen them a few weeks ago as they passed through Bathurst, so this was a lovely surprise to catch up with them again on their way home.

By early afternoon we were back home and starting to unpack the van.  It had been a fabulous week away.  Scrub Stitchin’ is definitely a highlight of the year.  We can’t wait to do it all again in 2025.

Scrub Stitchin’ - Meanwhile, Back at the Camp

This year Mick and I were the only ones who brought our caravan to Scrub Stitchin’ and Mick was the only husband to tag along.  Quite a contrast to last year when there were several hubbies and Mick played tour guide.  He enjoys our annual visit to Baradine as much as I do.

He was looking forward to a quiet few days, reading, going for a walk, maybe playing some bowls.  So much for that….. He ended up being a gopher for all of us “Scrubbers”.

He helped set up the room on Tuesday, did a couple of jobs in the garden for Chooky’s mum, and most importantly, collected and delivered our scones for morning tea on Thursday.  He did receive payment for that little job, with his own parcel of scones.

On Friday, he went into Coonabarabran to have lunch with a mate who moved up there a few years ago.  While he was there he was given the job of collecting some items at the patchwork shop…….oh, and while you’re there, can you pop out to the other patchwork shop to pick up some things?

On Saturday, after taking all our photos, he did get to have an informal game of bowls with some locals, something he really enjoyed.  He then had his next job of helping to set up the room for our special Saturday night dinner.  

Add to all that, he had a bit of a play with “Frank”, starting to run some wires to connect the UHF radio and caravan reversing camera.  Both jobs that will be completed back home.

The poor fellow had not rest.

Having said that, he did get to finish the book that he was reading.

He was not starving either.  We had bought some sweet treats on the way up, so he enjoyed nice morning and afternoon teas.

Rather than join the girls for breakfast, Mick and I had brekkie in the van each day.  I love the way the steam shone in the morning sunlight.

Dinners weren’t too bad either.  He had dinner at the pub with Chooky and Jules’ hubbies on Wednesday, while all us girls were out the back.  On Thursday he cooked a BBQ.  Friday was Chinese and raffles at the Bowlo with the locals.  He always enjoys this, as they make him feel so welcome.  On Saturday night he received a serve of the roast dinner that we enjoyed. No slumming it for Mick.

The campground is such a nice peaceful place to spend time.

You can see  what a lovely setting it is from his drone shots.

The weekend was capped off when he received this on Sunday.  He was tickled pink.

Now to wait twelve months until we do it all again.

Friday 26 April 2024

Scrub Stitchin’ - Swaps and Shopping

 An integral part of the retreat is the “Make it or fake it” swap.  It is such fun on the Saturday night seeing what everyone has gifted and received.

I had fun this year making a little sewing pouch with bits and bobs inside. It was all inspired by the random cute strawberry fat quarter I recently found.  The pouch is a combination of a couple of patterns from Anni Downs.  

I found the perfect coloured vintage ric rac in my stash.

It was a bit of a challenge to add the ric rac around the label, as I was using machine buttonhole, but we got there in the end, with lots of pins.

Betty of Rainbow Connections Quilter was the recipient of this little collection.

The gift I received was a fat quarter bundle of rustic, country style fabrics.  They will work well to make a blokey quilt.  This gift came from Sue.

Now to the shopping…… there always has to be a little retail therapy.

The only shopping plan I had was to buy the jelly roll ruler for the braided quilt that many would make during the retreat and to get one more batik fabric to add to the fish quilt I am making.  

I didn’t make the braided quilt on the weekend, but I have pulled out a junior jellyroll and coordinating fabrics to make a cot quilt at some stage.  Another one for the list……

Our first stop on the way up was Crafters Cottage in Coonabarabran.  As we had taken longer to get up there than planned, and we were to be giving Chooky a hand to set things up, I only called in very briefly, but did come out with a suitable grubby brown batik.  The best bit was that I ran into Jenny of Bird on the Border while there.

The other purchases were all made from the pop up shop that Deb from Crafters Cottage set up at Scrub Stitchin’.  Having that shop on site is such a bonus for us, and I’m also guessing for Deb.  Win, win.

I even brought home a gift for Monique.  I was delighted to see that there were bobbin cases to hold “M” sized bobbins, which are what Monique uses.  My bobbins were just thrown in a small tub beforehand.  This is so much better, and something I had been on the lookout for.

Pins with caravans on them are not something that was on my shopping list, but how could I resist?

Also, I didn’t NEED any more fat quarters, but when I saw that she had the same Tilda fabric that was used in our bag that we made from last year’s retreat I bought some more with a matching project in mind…… I just have to make it.

The other fat quarters are just ones that I know will be incorporated in something.  You can never have too many low volumes for a scrappy background, which I always prefer to just a single fabric.

Scrub Stitchin’ - What We Worked On

 There is always such a variety of projects under way during the retreat.  For the last few years Chooky has come up with a project that we may like to stitch at the same.  This year it was a braided quilt featuring a zig zag up the centre of the braid.  

It required a ruler that is custom made by Picton Patchwork in Coonabarabran and is cleverly made using a jelly roll.  It is a very effective design with minimal wastage.

The designers visited one evening, bringing their version of the quilt to show us.

Most of us bought the ruler, but only a small portion of the group started the project.  I took along suitable fabrics, but ended up too busy working on other things to make a start.

This is how things finished at the end of the retreat.  The way it works is that you make one very long braid and then cut it into segments to make the columns in the quilt.  It looks so different in the various fabric ranges.  I hope some of the completed quilts are brought along next year for us to see.  Hopefully, I’ll have mine done in time.

I couldn’t resist getting a photo of the papparazzi.

Let’s have a wander and see what else was happening.

And me.  Well, as usual, I took far more than I could ever achieve, but there would be nothing worse than running out of projects… if.
While I think of it, I took a new item to Scrub Stitchin' this year.  I usually have a mish mash of different bags to take my sewing bits and bobs.  This year I was looking for a better solution.  I bought this vintage Singer sewing box a couple of years ago, full of various sewing items, but have never used it.  It proved to be perfect for all my notions.  It is even now resplendent with a star, thanks Jenny.  I must remember to take it again next year.
My priority was to get the appliqué leaves, stems and berries completed on my Laundry Basket Spring Mystery Quilt.  That took way longer than expected.  Maybe it had something to do with the fact that I was talking and didn’t even stitch a stitch until after morning tea on Thursday.  Let’s face it, this is about more than the sewing, so it doesn’t matter.
Anyway, I did get the appliqué finished, the four quadrants joined and the hexy appliquéd to the centre by Saturday lunch.  Phew! Not the best photo, but you get the idea. Now I have to work out a final border.

What next?  I also brought fourteen fish blocks to appliqué.  Yep, fourteen.  After the last project I was over appliqué, so didn’t even touch them. 
I was in the mood for something simple and rather mindless. My two split nine patches for the Rainbow Scrap Challenge fit the bill nicely.
Two years ago, at Scrub Stitchin’, I made a heap of half square triangles as leaders and enders and they have sat in their little baggie ever since.  The plan was to make a baby quilt, but I would need to make a decision about layout.  After having a bit of a look through Pinterest I settled on a sort of off centre spiral pinwheel thing.  It evolved mainly due to the colours that I had.  Nothing, flash, quick and easy and once I quilt it, it will be another little donation quilt. It was finished by early evening on Saturday.
For the rest of Saturday evening and on Sunday I worked on my Number 9 of the Chookshed Stitchers’ Challenge.  This was my Harry Potter quilt.  Happily, I had the top pieced by lunchtime.  Now I just have to quilt and bind it by the end of the month.

It certainly was a very creative hub.