Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Pinwheels and frills :)

Words can't really describe the time I spent in Melbourne over the last few fact, I probably won't even try :) What I will say is that I hope to make it happen much more often...spending time with my sister is AWESOME!

I have probably forgotten to tell you (in all the excitement) that it was my sisters birthday on Friday...the day we both flew in for our little catchup. I put my pinwheel stamps to good use and made her a card...
The stamps are from a set called Sweets for the Sweet by Stampin' Up, and are my favourites right now. Who can resist the yummy layers?

The grass is hand cut from my favourite polkadottie paper by Echo Park...thank goodness they have recently released some new colours. I was starting to run low!

I also made her a new bag, because one can never have too many...right?

I used the Frilly Dilly pattern by The Janelle Wind Collection, using various fabrics from my stash, along with some prints by Denyse Schmidt.

I really wish I would make myself one of these bags...I love the size!

Better get back to unpacking my suitcase...and finding homes for my new purchases. The shopping in Melbourne was unbelievable!

TTFN xxx

Monday, February 20, 2012

Tip of the Day :)

It's a fact...sitting still for any length of time without doing something with my hands is a challenge for me :)

So I'm thinking about my little trip to Melbourne on Friday ( excited) and wondering how I'm going to pass the time on the plane, when I remember a tip I read over on Cardygirl's blog quite a while ago, about sewing and plane travel. While you're not allowed to take scissors in your take-on cut your threads while stitching...the airlines have no problems with this...


She's a clever girl, that Cardy :)

Ten hours of uninterrupted stitching time for me over the weekend...WOOOHOOOOO!

TTFN xxx

Saturday, February 18, 2012

There's something about caravans...

...that is just so very cute! This little stitched caravan is almost enough to inspire me to go on a caravaning holiday with my family...almost :)

Perhaps the most exciting thing about this caravan is that it is the very last block of stitching on my A Family Gathering quilt...yes, the last! As always, it's the details that I love most, like the cute little bird perched on top of the car roof...
...and the silver window latches :)

Next month, the borders will go on and I can start thinking about the quilting, and we all know that this could take me a while...especially since this will not be the only quilt of mine that is in that pile. Gulp.

TTFN xxx

Friday, February 17, 2012

Farmers Wife Friday - The Creature of Habit Edition

They say it takes 21 days of doing something until it becomes a habit.

I don't know if this is true, but it seems I can't get through a Friday without succumbing to my Farmers Wife habit :) I tried to resist the temptation to pull out the fabrics, but it just wouldn't be Friday without Farmers Wife, would it? It simply would not do :)

So with very little time to spare, I chose some simple blocks this week.
Block 71 Puss in the Corner...

...and Block 66 Periwinkle.
At this point in the Farmers Wife journey, it surprises me that I'm still finding colour combinations that I haven't used before! I really must lay all the blocks out and take some more progress shots for you...the quilt is getting quite big now :)

I may have to prepare some blocks during the week for next Friday's post...being a creature of habit and all... because I am flying to Melbourne that morning! WOOOHOOOO... I sooooo can not wait! My sister is flying in from NSW, and we are having a girly weekend, full of shopping and shows, catchups and cakes, and all sorts of other fun kid-free stuff....oh my, what a treat!

Happy Friday...hope your weekend is an awesome one!

TTFN xxx

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Project Life 2012- Week Six

Project Life has been a "bits and pieces" effort this week...I haven't had a spare couple of hours to sit down and work on it, so have been grabbing minutes of time when I can. I guess some weeks are going to be like that :)

I was looking through some of my older scrapping supplies when I cam across a collection by Cosmo Cricket called Little Girls. I have hoarded this pack for years...and years...but one of the quotes was perfect for a photo of Riley I had this week, so I lashed out and used the whole lot.

I've printed off a couple of Instagram photos this the way they look on the page!

I would have loved to add more stitching and other details, but just don't have the energy...LOL. (4am starts are a killer!)

So there you have it...another week down :)

I'm struggling to take photos this week, so Week 7 pages may prove to be difficult! Hoping I can find some motivation soon.

TTFN xxx

Monday, February 13, 2012

The Photo Dilemma

Ever since we moved to the opposite side of the country from our families several years ago, I have made up an album of photos each year for my inlaws for Christmas. The album is a bit late (a lot late?) this year, but is finally winging it's way to NSW as I type :)

There is something special, in these days of digital photography, to hold an album filled with real pictures.
As I was filling the pages with photos and jotting down snippets of information for each one, each and every member of my family, at one time or another, peeked over my shoulder and made a comment. When I had finished, we all sat down and looked through the album together. It got me thinking.
Thinking about all the photos that I've taken in the last few years that are sitting on my computer. Or in boxes waiting for me to "do something" with them. Photos that are in such disarray that no one, not even me, will remember the details in the not so distant future.

What to do then?

Do I give up on the idea that they will get scrapbooked, print them all off in 4x6, buy myself some regular photo albums and simply place them in with a couple of words of date and place?

Do I attempt to deal with them in similar format to Project, pop them in page protectors and jot down some stories, with a bit of scrappy goodness thrown in for good measure?

Do I have faith that one day, some day, they will make their way into my scrapbook albums?

Or what? Who knew photos could be such a dilemma!

I'd love to know what you do with yours!

TTFN xxx

Sunday, February 12, 2012

One from the vaults.

Most crafters I know have what we fondly refer to as WIPs (works in progress) or UFOs (unfinished objects).

They are projects that have been started, usually with much enthusiasm, that somehow, somewhere in between that glorious feeling of picking out new fabrics and the triumph of completion, fall by the wayside. Maybe something more exciting came along to distract us, maybe the project wasn't turning out as originally envisaged, maybe we got bored with the colours...for whatever reason, they fall, neglected, to the bottom of our work baskets.

Believe me, I have more than my share of UFOs. So many, in fact, that at one point they were overwhelming me.

So I made myself a little rule...if I haven't sewn a stitch in a particular project in the last 6 months, it is allowed to fall off my UFO other words, it doesn't count :)

That rule was working well for me until I found myself on holidays in Esperance in January, with very little stitching prepared. Desperate for something to occupy my hands, I reached to the bottom of my work basket and pulled out a UFO that has been sitting there for years. And years. It was Block One of a quilt called Fairy Kisses.

I purchased the pattern as a Block of the Month back in February 2006. I know this because the receipt was still in the packet :) From there, they piled up each and every month, until I had the full complement of patterns, and MUCH less space in my cupboard.

So why did I not stitch them? Well, there were many reasons :)

I had seen the original pattern at a craft fair, and ordered it by phone (I had no internet back then). I had just started decorating baby Merryn's bedroom, and asked for the colourway to be changed from turquoise/pink to mauve/ pink to match her until Block Five arrived, I had no real idea of what the actual colours would be, so couldn't choose my threads.
And when the fabrics finally DID arrive? I hated them. And also realised that the pattern I was receiving was not, in fact, the quilt that I thought it was....and I really didn't like some of the fairies AT ALL.

So there it sat, at the bottom of my work basket...a piece of embroidery that looked like it would never be finished, let alone a whole quilt!

When I started stitching it, I realised that I really like the technique. You colour the fabric with coloured pencils, blending as you go. After the stitching is complete, you cover the pencil markings with a textile medium to hold the's sort of cool.

So I persevered and completed the stitching, adding some silver for the fairy wings, and changing some of the thread colours...there is some serious stitching in this middle block! Then I went to my stash and traded some of the fabrics that really screamed at me for some that are more my style...and added some polkadots for good measure :)

I'm planning to make more changes as I go along, and hopefully in the end I will have a quilt that Merryn will like.

And let's be honest probably won't look a lot like the pattern... this space :)

TTFN xxx

Friday, February 10, 2012

Project Life 2012 - Week Five

Two posts in one must be a miracle!

I thought I'd better get Week 5's Project Life up on the blog, because Week 6 is almost over. What can I's been pretty busy around here (but you can read all about that next week LOL)

This week I've based my pages around a 6 1/2 inch paper pad from Kaisercraft called Bonjour. The elements from this pad made co-ordinating my pages sooooo easy...I will definitely be using this approach again :)

The left hand side of the page...

I've added some inserts this week, the first being a little booklet that Merryn made about our trip to Esperance in January. I had a photo of her making it, so scrapped a mini-layout for the other side of that page protector.
The polka-dots is a piece of artwork Merryn created for me while she was supposed to be cleaning her room...hmmmmmmm.

The right side has some photo collages that I created when printing my photos....I'm loving this way of adding extra photos onto my pages. I know you can use several apps on the iphone to do this, and can also use layered templates in Photoshop, but I tend to forget until I'm actually printing :) I also find it easier!

The "Note to self: I am enough" is a little saying that I find myself repeating quite a lot, so wanted to include it. I've also included a lolly wrapper...I took a photo originally, but like the crispness of the colours in the actual wrapper.

Thought you might like a close-up of my note from Merryn... makes me laugh for many reasons, and is just SO her right now. Such a cheeky little monkey!

How are you going with your Project Life? Again, please leave me a comment so I can come and check it out :)

TTFN xxx

Farmers Wife Friday - The Two New and a Re-Do Edition

Hello Friday!

I'm back to "farming" this week, with two new blocks to show you, and a re-do of a "without white" block. The temperature outside is a blistering 39 degrees, so it's lovely to be sitting in the cool airconditioning, mucking about with fabric today :)

First up, we have Block 47, Homemaker...

...this one had me stumped for a bit, until I read the instructions in fine print at the bottom of the diagram. When in doubt, look for instructions :)

Block number 37 is called Flower Pot...
...and it was so out of square when I finished that I considered remaking it, but went with trimming off the sides instead. I may live to regret that decision when it comes to putting the blocks together :)

When I first decided to "add white" to each block, I envisaged myself just remaking the blocks from scratch. It's becoming apparent, now that I am finishing off a few more blocks and am almost halway to a queen size quilt, that I may run short of Rose Parade fabrics some time in the future. After all, I'm only using a jelly roll of that particular fabric combined with white and spots :)

So I'm going with the more fabric-frugal option and adding just a little bit of white to the existing blocks. What do you think? Can I get away with it?

Have a great Friday...and if you are in Perth...KEEP COOL!

TTFN xxx

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Not just one...but two!

I got on a bit of a roll with my scrapbooking yesterday...I think having December Daily all finished was just what I needed to boost my scrapping mojo a bit :) Having lots of photos printed doesn't hurt either!

I started with some of Riley's 14th birthday shots...
The colours in the detail shot above are much truer to the actual layout. I love the effect of different twines all tied in a bow...they just say "birthday" to me :)

The paper is Basic Grey Lemonade which I've been saving for a long time, and there's lots of stitching on there too.

While I was flicking through the big pile of photos, I came across the one of me on Christmas Eve...

I loved cooking Christmas goodies last year. I let go of the stress and expectation that I usually put myself through, and just went with the was awesome!

I used Echo Park Holly Jolly Christmas papers, to save me packing them up after I completed DD. I'm always amazed how easy it is to use the stuff on my soon as I pack it away, I tend to forget about it!

Two pages scrapped...wooohoooo!

TTFN xxx

Saturday, February 4, 2012

December Daily 2011...the end!

Something had to give on my desk. The paper and photos and embellishments for December Daily had sat there for way too long, and decision time had come...pack it up or finish it off!

With only a couple of days left to document, and a few spare minutes on my hands, I went with the "finish it off" option :)

You may recall, I hadn't even made the covers for this album (!!!) so that was the first thing to finish...

I usually do a little introduction-type page, but had very few embellishments left, so this is how it ended up.

It's not my favourite page, but it's done ;)

Day 23...

I wanted to include these cute gift tags that were attached to my pressies from Linda and Tracey...far too nice to throw away!
And Day 24, on which there were lots and lots of photos and stories to tell, but I went with just one...

...mainly because I was running out of time, and wanted it DONE! LOL

The Christmas cards I received this year went into a little pocket at the back of the book, secured with washi tape.

This was a new addition to my album this year, mainly because I could fit them in! The number of Christmas cards I receive seems to be dwindling each year...even I didn't send out very many this year, and totally missed sending my Christmas newsletter, which is previously unheard of!

So here it is, all finished and ready to take it's place next to December Daily albums from years passed...


Have a wonderful Saturday!

TTFN xxx

Friday, February 3, 2012

Farmers Wife Friday - The Clippered Edition

Feels good to be back on track with my Farmers Wife Friday posts...routine works so well for me :)

First up we have block 44 Gentleman's Fancy...

...which I made in the same colourway as a block that I have to unpick because it has no white (who made up that stupid rule, anyhow? LOL), but this one obviously DOES have white :)

Number 49 is Honeycomb...
...which somehow just isn't really doing it for me? I kept changing fabrics and colours all morning before I finally settled on these ones, but I'm still not loving them. It would seem that I work much better with a house full of kids and not a lot of time, as opposed to a whole, quiet day stretching out before me. Go figure.

I'll leave you with this photo of my precious dog, Clancy. Poor boy was really feeling the heat this week, so I booked him in for a "short allover" style today...he's looking pretty sharp (and so much cooler!)

Gotta love a dog clipper that makes house calls :)

TTFN xxx

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Project Life 2012 - Week Four

First month down...which is a bit of a relief, really :)

Project Life is an amazing tool for memory keeping...have I mentioned that before? As I look back on the first four weeks, I'm filled with a sense of satisfaction :) I have recorded more family stories in the last four weeks than I did for the entire year in 2011...and that makes me very happy, because I am ALL about the story in scrapbooking :)

So here are my pages...

I didn't use a single item from the PL kit this week. Some weeks are going to be like that I think :)

Instead, I've used bits and pieces from my stash that I American Crafts thickers, and October Afternoon paper, a quote sticker, and various other random things.

My children all went back to school today, and I'm wondering how much harder this project is going to be now that we are back into routine, and I don't spend every waking hour with them...time will tell :)

Thanks so much for looking...and please leave me a comment so I can check out what you've been up to in Week 4 :)

TTFN xxx
P.S. I'm hoping to add a couple of layouts as an insert to this week...just haven't quite made it that far yet!

P.P.S Lots more pages to see over here...