Cathy’s quilt #2

I haven’t managed to come up with a name for this one yet…

cathys-quilt-1-3You all know how much I love to name quilts; it seems to help me with ideas and impetus. This one’s got me a bit stumped. Something to do with the colour? Teals, aquas, blue-greens, water and air colours… The design? Basket-weave, stars, chequerboard, flower baskets… The future owner? The lovely Cathy, my sister-in-law, hard-working education student and mother, with a heart of gold.

I have three more blocks done. I realised about 5 minutes into the second one that I’d mucked up the first one I showed. So I’m saving that for a cushion cover unless I run out of fabrics, in which case I’ll have to do a huge frog and unpick the entire thing. Here are three new basket-weave/star blocks and the central flower basket appliqué block. I’m waiting to do the 8 inch chequer-board blocks round this till I see how much fabric I have left from the 16 inch outer blocks.


Flower basket 16 inch centre block

If anyone out there has a stroke of genius for the name, do please share it. I don’t promise to use any suggestions, but you never know, you might end up giving me the inspiration I need 🙂

And Cathy, if you have a name for this quilt, I want to know!


POSTSCRIPT:  Many thanks to Kate of Manic Mumdays, who provided the future name for this quilt. I give you Sea Glass!

F²F² January progress report

I know, I know, I’m very late with the report this month!

Screen Shot 2015-03-14 at 7.32.54 pmEsther’s unusual and beautiful colour combination of hot pink/magenta, muted dark green and grey on a cream or white background is producing some really beautiful blocks, some of which are already up in the Gallery.  To see her original colour inspiration, head over to the Members & Colours page, where we’ve all shown images that have inspired our colour choices. It’s been a busy month for all of us, catching up on the backlog after Christmas, but we’re currently up to date, and looking good!

I will be travelling at the end of next month, when the final F²F² round up is due, so I’m giving you advance notice that the final report will be a few days late. It’ll give us all time to get our final blocks completed in good order as we bid a fond farewell to Foot²Freestyle.

I hope those of you in the Northern Hemisphere are staying safe and warm this winter, while those of us Down Under are sweltering in a long and tiring heatwave of 30°- 45°C (85° – 113°F).  I wonder if there’s any normal weather anywhere in the world right now!

See you at the end of the month with the January round up.


Really? Another one…?

No, it’s probably not a good idea…

After all, I have three quilts making orderly but gradual progress (Hatbox, Anemone and TWX) and two more in block form (F2F and F2F2) sitting in the cupboard waiting to be assembled. So what on earth prompted me to start yet another?

cathy-sample-blockWell, after the creative log-jam I endured last week, the dam has burst: I got my three F2F2 January blocks out (stay away from that gallery, Esther!), I’m up to date with my ScrapHappy, Bee Myself and I and Stitch Along work, and I need to wait for more TWX blocks to come in before I can make a real start on that one. So I didn’t have anything pretty to play with 😦

cathys-quilt-designYou know what’s coming, don’t you? Yup. Started another quilt, this time for my sister in law’s bed. I have a lovely selection of jelly roll strips and co-ordinating fat quarters, a nice straightforward pattern drawn up, and best of all, no deadline! Sometimes it’s good just to have something pretty but undemanding to sew. I often find that in that situation, I’ll get loads done, and the quilt almost feels as if it’s assembled itself.

The blocks for the outer border will be 16 inches square, all the others will be 8 inches square. And it’s a sorta, kinda medallion: the centre block is 4 traditional flower basket blocks where the bottom triangle is in a basketweave fabric and the top triangle is a floral. Round that will be 16-patch chequerboard blocks, and outside that again, a basket-weave with simple stars at the intersections. I think there’ll have to be a plain border round the whole thing to bring it up to size, but I’ll see how I get on.

And if you’re thinking you’ve seen the top picture before, you’re right, but since then, my cutting table is entirely covered with 8½ inch strips of jelly roll, and this quilt is galloping away with me! I’ll still be working away at all the others, but at the proper time.

Hurrah, and tally ho! I’m off again 🙂

ScrapHappy January

As you can see, Anemone’s in bloom!

anemone-start-of-assemblyAt left you can see three more hexie flowers I’ve made (loads still to go) and I’ve actually started assembling the centre section. The pace on this project has slowed a bit now that I have another OCA quilt in progress, but things are still happening. The two quilts I’m working on concurrently, this one and the Hatbox quilt, are symbiotic; a fabric I’ve used for the Hatboxes will then provide scraps for Anemone. All very satisfactory!

Once again, it’s the 15th of the month, the day my friend Gun in Sweden and I host ScrapHappy, a day for showing something made from scraps.

ScrapHappy is open to anyone using up scraps – no new fabrics. It can be a random or formal quilt block, a pillow or pincushion, a bag or hat, a collage or rag rug. Anything made of scraps is eligible. If your scrap collection is out of control and you’d like to turn them into something beautiful instead of leaving them to collect dust in the cupboard, why not join us on the 15th of each month? Either email me at the address shown on my Contact Me page, or leave a comment below. You can also contact Gun via her blog to join. You don’t have to worry about a long term commitment or even join in every month, just let either of us know a day or so in advance if you’re new and you’ll have something to show, so we can add your link.

Here are the links for everyone who joins ScrapHappy from time to time (they may not post every time, but their blogs are still worth looking at):

Usually has a scrappy post:

Gun at (in Swedish and English)

Titti at (in Swedish only)

Heléne at (in Swedish only)

Sometimes has a scrappy post:

Eva at (in Swedish only)

Sue at (in English only)

Nanette at (in English only)

Lynn at (in English only)

Norma at (in English only)

Lynda at: (in English only)

Birthe: (in Norwegian only)

Turid: (in English and Norwegian)

Cathy: (in English only)

Debbierose: (in English only)

Tracy: (in English only)

Jill: (in English only)

Claire: (in English only)

Susan: (in English only)

Jan: (in English only)

Karen: (in English only)

Deb: (in English only)

See you again, same time next month!

In a spin…

I can’t seem to settle to my sewing.

paper-piecing-patterns Normally, I’d know exactly what I wanted to do, and would focus on it and make some decent progress. Just lately, the past week or so, I can’t seem to focus. Burning my hand didn’t help. I was in the mood to sew and couldn’t. Now, I look at the several project piles and can’t decide. I pick something up… and then put it down again. Some of it is time-critical, but even that’s not enough to get my motor running.

cathys-quilt-cutting cathy-sample-blockThere’s only one solution. Go into my sewing room, close the door, turn everything on, and just get on with something.

I’ve designed two paper pieced patterns, but haven’t tried them yet. I’ll start there. As it happens, they’re the ones I need to finish first, so it’s a good place to start. I hope it goes OK, I don’t feel as if I can sew sweetly and smoothly today, so there may be extensive frogging. We shall see…

Wish me luck.

TWX6: ….and four more

More X blocks are on the way!

Here are photos of the four pretty blocks which are in the mail; the first two from Kathy in the US and the second two from Gun in Sweden.

kathy-x-1 kathy-x-2







gun-x-1 gun-x-2







I have to determine how these fit into the overall scheme; two are clearly light, but I have to wait and see if the dark ones are darker than others on their way.

If there are more than I need by the time everyone has sent their contributions in, I’ll save them for a future quilt. We’re getting there, and at this rate it’ll be sooner rather than later 🙂

And if you’d like to contribute but don’t have the time to sew, if you have teal scraps, I’ll take those too!

Clean food

By which I mean food free of things which do not nourish. Like pesticides, herbicides, preservatives, etc.

We’re trying to pay more attention to what we eat, and changing the nature of the things we put in our mouths. It has been months since I opened the sugar jar, and I’ve actually moved it out of the kitchen and into the store room. We’re buying heaps more vegetables, to the point where I’ve had to fire up the second fridge again; the weather’s too hot and humid here to keep them out of a refrigerated area. It’s paying off, we both feel better, sleep better and have less wobbly stuff to try and cram into our clothes. But up to now, it’s been a bit of a struggle to find some foods that are more rather than less as nature intended.

Until today. We have discovered a new Farmer’s Market which has been going for a short while in a lovely spot next to the Pioneer river in the centre of town. As this is still so soon after Christmas, there weren’t too many stalls yet, but I’m told that going forward, many others will return after their Christmas break.

On sale we saw: Home made jams, sauces and pickles; culinary and dessert sauces and locally made rum liqueur; freshly caught local seafood and fish; local garlic and herbs; local salads and greens; local pineapples, picked that morning; local pumpkins and zucchini; local jakfruit, watermelons, sugar bananas, pawpaws and mangoes; organic grass-fed, biodynamic pork, beef, bacon, sausages and proper pastured free range eggs; local musicians and coffee stalls, and more…

clean-foodI love a good porky snag (sausage, if you’re not an Aussie), so I bought a pack of them from Freckle Farm: pork, leeks, garlic, rice flour and salt. I needed eggs, so I bought a dozen of those too, from the same place. The hens are allowed to range freely, not yarded, and they are stocked at only 150 per acre rather than up to 4,000 per acre, which is apparently what the egg producing industry feels is free range. I don’t, and I’ll be buying these whenever I can in future. The farm uses no pesticides or herbicides, the animals are pasture raised on biodynamic principles, and visitors are welcome to see the animals and inspect their living conditions. I picked up a price list for the pork and beef, and while it is significantly more expensive than either the supermarket or the good butcher, I suspect we’ll be happier to eat smaller quantities of this superior product.

The Husband likes something a bit bitey with his eggs and snags, so we bought some sample pots of chilli sauces and chutneys, and we’ll buy a big jar of whatever he likes best next time we go. And finally, the nice man on the banana stall gave me a free sugar (Ducasse) banana and some very useful info about where to buy licensed slips for bluggoes (a kind of plantain), as I’ve seen no cooking banana types anywhere. This is a banana-producing state, so you have to go to a licensed supplier to avoid cross-breeding, pests and diseases.

If there’s anyone close enough to Mackay to pay a visit to the market, it’s well worth the time. Here’s the FaceBook page link, so you can see what’s on and what people think.

I’ll be going back next time I need eggs, that’s for sure. And I’m pretty sure the Husband’ll be wanting more of those snags…