Wednesday, June 25, 2008


if you like my blog, it has moved to

my Baby Jane is still at

Thursday, April 10, 2008

The (In)sanity continues..... like forever since I have posted anything on this blog.

Mostly the same things are happening every week, same dramas, different days.

Any way....the point of THIS post is to show that I am getting right along with the "Insanity" quilt

I had a small hiccup with the top border. I was following the diagram in the magazine, and the hexagon flowers weren't lining up like they did on the cover photo.


I rang the designer, and it turns out that the drawn diagram is WRONG!!

THEN.....I rang the magazine, and had to wait for the appropriate person to ring me back.

I can't remember the name of the woman I spoke to, but the correct diagram will (hopefully) be in Volume 17, issue 1 of AP&Q.

After all the discussion, I had to remover the whole top border of hexagon flowers, re-space them, and then sew them back into place.

There was no mention on the part of the magazine to try and compensate me for their error, or MY time in fixing it......but I WAS the first person to bring it to their attention.

And for some better news

Four inch charm squares on the left, and five inch charm squares on the right. Enough to add 100 centre losenges to my quilt,or 100 hex flowers, or a combination of both!

A four inch charm square gives me 9 hexagons.

A five inch square will give me 16 hexagons

I am trying to add 25 pieces to this quilt each day. My friend Lissa was kind enough to point out that it would take me 480 days total to piece the top!!

I think that I will keep a little noetbook for a while to see how many pieces I DO add each day.


Friends who do the math for you
Charm squares in very useful sizes
School is back!
a husband who encourages my piecing efforts
Quilty friends

Sunday, March 30, 2008

for want of a camera..

Dear Daughter (miss 19, now with an 'official' boyfriend) went to Sydney last weekend to visit.

She 'borrowed' the digital camera.

I'm STILL waiting for her to give it back.

So, no exciting pictures this post.

I HAVE made progress on "Insanity", got a little bored with the centre, and started to build a bit of border.

This looks like being the quilt that ate us all (LOL), it will be HUMUNGOUS!!. Maybe it's just that I hve a problem with imagining how big something will be when it is "?? x ##" I need to SEE the dimensions.

This probably won't happen, unless we get giant pattern sheets in quilting magazines that have solid colored line is for the XX quilt, green is the size of quilt get the idea. All of us that are visually challenged could then get out the sheets of patterns and drape them where the quilts would go, then see if the quilt was big enough!!

Our family went to a birthday party yesterday. Cousin J turned 2. It was going to be an afternoon tea in a park near the birthday boy's house. Dues to inclement weather, it was AT the birthday boy's house.

We had 7 of our children there. Apart from 2 other cousins, there were no children over 4. I thinkg the total attendance was 19 children and 30 odd adults. In a two bedroom, first floor walk-up unit.

Interesting party, I sat in a corner and prepped some hex's....and fought the urge to run out of there screaming. It was just too much, even with everyone on best party manners. The food was good though!!

Cousin J and his parents are moving to a house in two and a half weeks....I know his parents are reallly looking forward to it.......a HOUSE with a backyard....FIL will be installing a sand pit!!

That same weekend, we are doing some cosmetic front yard permitting

Also to note, the first week of two weeks school holidays has passed. Much easier to handle. Not nearly as stressful as I had feared

Miss 19 works full time, and Master 15 is besotted by busses, so rides them all day. Master (now) 12 goes bike riding with his friends, and miss 10 is off with her friends.

We had a small, family Easter, not too much chocolate.

All in all, things are going OK here.


Children (mostly) amusing themselves
Family celebrations
doing OK on meds....albeit sleeping 12-15 hours a day
everyone is currently well
*only* one more week of holidays

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

back from no-sew......


This will be a picture heavy post....if Blogger plays nice!

First....cast your mind back to when I made the quilt for the Berwick Show. I was originally going to enter this one too. Fresh is the Bloom by Jennie Osborne (Country Threads, Vol. 6 # 6 and 7) Part of the pattern was missing from the magazines. By the time I got the missing pattern pieces from the designer, the show was over. This is the top, without borders.

Next is a progress picture on "Insanity" I have completed the top row, now to finish building the centre (158 lozenge shapes) and get 'in the zone' for borders.......MANY plain hexagons....

Figured out that I can get 9 hexagons from a 4 inch charm square, so I will be on the look-out for swaps etc.

And two of my tribe had birthday parties to go to last weekend.

The first was Master 4. His friend is 'into' Scooby Doo. I used Google, found a picture, enlarged it, and appliqued the cushion cover. I was also able to play with my free-motion foot and do a little embroidery detail.

Miss 10 went to a party too. Her best-friend-at-the-moment LOVES skulls. Again with the Google for a picture....this cushion cover is straight satin stitch applique.

I thnk that both of these projects turned out pretty well.....seeing as I was up past 2 am to finish them!!....I think most mums can relate to that. LOL
...and hubby had no idea that I knew how to make cushion covers like these!! Neither did I really, until I tried.
If you are wondering........I sewedVelcro into the back closure, I cannot fathom buttonholes :>(
parties went well, presents seemed to be appreciated
I'm getting to know my sewing machine better
also stretching my boundaries with free-motion embroidery
the Insanity quilt piece is growing
having Blogger accept my third attempt at this post

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

just a V. quick post

have started a yahoo 'support' group for hexagon quilt makers

if anyone wants to join and talk about six sided piecing.

will be back later in the week to catch up on all the other 'stuff' in my life!

Friday, February 29, 2008

Happy Anniversary Paul

"This is the man that I plan to entangle
Isn't he fine? "
....with thanks to the "Once More With Feeling" soundtrack (Buffy and Josh Wheedon)
Well, eight years ago today (February 29, if blogger isn't on GMT +10) we DID get married
So, we are celebrating our official 2nd Anniversary. I think it is supposed to be paper.
Appropriate then, that todays mail contained a Mortgage Statement.
Oh yeah, 3 children also had a "free" day from school, so there were 7 of them at home for most of the day.
MIL called to say "Congratulations", and that was about it.
No $$ for a celebration or presents......but we do have dinner (meatballs and pasta) on the menu
we HAVE a mortgage
bills are (mostly) paid this week
Master 11 made us a card....brickwork with a bat on it
DH is REALLY a dear husband
my missing blocks for the applique quilt came today!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

lots to catch up on


My Secret Santa parcel arrived! It was posted in Canada on the 27th of November last year!!

It arrived last Friday. Lots of good things, and I love the bag "Do not disturb, Quilting in progress" There were even two cat FQ's that I didn't already have. And a little bundle of Olvia the Pig Christmas fabrics...too cute


This past weekend was the Berwick Show. It's basically an ag show, but since Berwick is now an outer suburb of Melbourne, it is really a lot like any other big show. Rides, sideshow alley and NOISE....oh, and CROWDS.

I went!!! I put a quilt in the handcraft competition, and wanted to see if it won a ribbon (I had a quilt come third two years ago)

Definately NOT worth the anxiety. I don't "do" crowds at the best of times, but this was awful. Not only did my quilt not win a prize, it was rolled up into a very small space, and couldn't be seen properly!!

And it IS hanging straight, the bookshelf it's hanging across is making it hang stupid!

Last but NOT least, Libby is having a contest.

She wants to see our ironing here's mine....ummm, it's REALLY not that old, but managed to get scorched and stuff already.

I do use baking paper when I use vliesofix, so the only other excuse is that one of the kids must have done it..... :>(


I have actual picture content
DH is willing to take me just about anywhere.....and put up with the accompanying panic/anxiety attacks
the kids all behaved and let me finish the quilt in time for the show
I have a nice FINISHED quilt
my SS present took a long time, but really cheered me up

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Am I REALLY a Headcase??

I bought the latest issue of Australian Patchwork and Quilting Magazine.

It has a wonderful Hexagon quilt on the cover

Scroll down the page, a slightly better picture of the quilt and a description are there

10,339 half-inch Hexagons

I had a few remnants of 30's repro's.....ones that I actuall like and use. How hard can this quilt be? I have done English-Style paper piecing before.......

Do you know HOW SMALL the templates are??? Half an inch on each side. A smidge more than my thumb nail.........

I found a site that offers free hex shaped graph paper. I have printed off four sheets (so far) for my own "Insanity"

These are the units I have put together.

The left hand picture is the start of the centre of the quilt. There are 158 'lozenge' shaped units in total.

I have 9 together, and nine waiting to go in (18).

*Only* 140 to go. Then there is the white border, the solid border and the scrappy border.

I will be "hexing" for a LOOONG time

As a small aside.... mentions the quilt on her blog.

Seems there are LOADS of orders for half inch EPP pieces at her website!!!

Ths quilt looks to be the "Next Big Thing"

In other quilty news (yes, I am SEWING) I have my units together for the "Carolina Crossroads" Quilt, (link in the side bar) and I participated in Bonnie Hunter's "Bargello Bowl", but I am still to put the icon up.

......and on a TOTALLY manic day, I have entered TWO!! quilts into the local AG, they are not completely pieces yet, and are due at the showgrounds NEXT Friday!!

BUT...... (justification here) I will have used almost all of my Thimbleberries Stash.


having $$ to but a magazine
the fabric to begin a new quilt
DH who (hopefully) fixed "Ethel"
blogger friends
the kits are behaving today

ps......if anyone would like to contribute 30's fabrics, I need either 7" squares or fat sixteenths (9 x 11 inches) I should be ale to find either fabrics or Aust. mags to swap!

....and no, DJ isn't forgotten, I just have to cut for more blocks, they reqire more concentration than basting hex's

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Good Mummy/Bad Mummy....and perceptions

Funny how I can be one thing to one daughter and the opposite to another.

Miss 3 inherited a pair of "My Little Pony" boxer shorts. Unfortunately, she is on the lean side, and the shorts elastic had stretched. Big sister tried to throw them out because they were "No good for you any more, put them in the bin."

Dear miss 3 got dressed today and refused to be without the boxers. I told her I would try to fix them.....after I had eaten breakfast and finished my coffee.

She asked me at LEAST 20 times if I was finished. In the end, I got the roll of elastic out, measured her waist and unpicked a little of the waistband to put new elastic in.

I didn't take the old elastic out, it was well sewn in. I just ran the new elastic in, using a safety pin to pull it through. It took me two tries to get the elastic the right length...miss 3 IS lean.

Sew up the waist band again, and I get "I LUFF you mummy!"

Next is miss ten. She is also lean....and TALL. "I need a new school dress"


"Cos I got this one last year...." I am not going to spend $40 on a new dress, I am letting the hem down.

"I HATE you, you NEVER buy me new things, I'm the ONLY one in school who won't have a new dress....."

........did I mention she is ONLY 10?

I freely admit that I repair my kid's clothes when I can. I replace buttons, darn holes, replace elastic, and take hems up or down. Simple stuff.

But, I have been asked if I am in dire circumstances, if I HAVE to do these things.

Many years ago, (miss 19 was about 2 and a half), she outgrew her favourite overalls, and she cried for ages. I put flowery fabric cuffs on the bottom, lengthened the straps (with dark elastic) and re-covered the denim pocket with the cuff fabric.

A few days later, I received 2 bags of clothes from an aquaintance. She didn't realise that we were "so short of money, that I had to alter the overalls"

She didn't 'get' it. The implication was that I did it out of necessity, not just to please my daughter

Now days, I regularly bundle up the "still good" clothes my kids outgrow and either pass them on to other mums I know, or give them to a Charity.

which reminds me.........miss 3's fairy dress needs fixing will have to go to large chain store and buy some tulle.....the stuff it was made from tore VERY quickly. (I actually wouldn't bother, but she got it with her fairy wings, and EVERYONE CAN'T be a fairy with wings and no skirt!!) LOL


knowing how to repair small "emergencies"
knowing that miss 10 will "hate" me a lot more in the coming years
also knowing that I am NOT the only mother who says "NO"!
loving all my kids, no matter what they say (or do)
if this is as bad as it gets?? I'm doing OK!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

motivation...and looking for fabric

I'm back to the land of blog.

and I'm feeling a little better.

the meds situation hasn't changed, but I have found a quilt I WANT to make.

......actually, it is for Paul (my husband).

I don't remember if I said, but we were married on February 29th, 2000.

so, this year is our second "official" anniversary.

Anyways, this is the quilt

and this is the focus fabric (ignore the fact that I don't have any "go with" Japanese fabric)

It is an Alexander Henry print, the name is "Miss Butterfly"

It comes on a pink, white or black background, just to make things REALLY difficult, I want the white one.

Paul is a fan of Anime comics anything Japanese.

Before he met me (nearly 9 years ago now), he wanted to tour Japan, and possibly teach English. HE even learnded Japanese for a couple of years.

Anyways....I NEED (the pattern says) 1.5 metres....that is somewhere near one and three quarter yards.

In my dreams, I would like 2 metres, or 2 and one ninth? math sucks!!

I have found ONE source, but they want AU $15.99 for a HALF yard.

Can paypal or barter.

Paul does SO much for me each and every day, it would be nice to surprise him with a quilt.

.....and school will be back, and I will have some time that he can actually leave me.

Childrens nap time permitting!! LOL

Will get around not having Japanese fabrics by using strips of I spy fabrics (I have a LOT of them)

This will be a sneak quilt........even if I hve to use my Brother 400 to quilt it instead of Ethel.

.....bit hard to pop a project box and the 12 foot table into the bus to go to quilting group....


my husband
his willingness to give up his hobbies (and time) to look after me
school holidays are nearly over!!
Miss 19 has a FULL TIME job
all my friends on the internet

Monday, January 14, 2008


It is the 14th of January, 2008

I don't feel like this year is much different from the last.

I do, however, plan to make some changes.

Buy the minimum possible fabric....the background for my Baby Jane being an exception. I also bought 100 fat sixteenths, so I am set for a goodly while there, and I do have a box of Civil War Repro's besides.

I am slowly knitting a shawl, these balls of wool are few and far between

I have no new needles for Ethel, but that is all right. I have neither the funds for needles, backing and batting, nor the expertise to right the problem and quilt.

I look around my Studio, and it doesn't make me feel Happy, or inspired, or content.

It is full of 'stuff'.....that I don't NEED or WANT. I have the urge sometimes to take it all into the yard and burn it.

But I cannot DO that. There is too much money invested in the shelves for that.

In magazines alone, I had 80 duplicates, or ones I no longer wanted, and half again of bear and doll magazines

I tried an Ebay store, just for scrap bags and bundles of magazines, but didn't sell a thing,

I have begun a mystery quilt, I indulged, and bought 6, 10 cm cuts of fabric to add spice, the rest is off the shelf.

Scary, that I can pull upwars of 9 yards of fabric without making a dent.

I had thought about opening a little internet business, but the paperwork, and accountability stopped me, well, that and the realisation that it takes persistance and money to be sucessful

For the moment, I am going to try to get up each day and not want to go straight back to bed.

For the moment it looks like the mental illness is winning.

So I will read other blogs when I am able, and perhaps comment, in the mean time, Studio Christine is on Hiatus