Wednesday, July 19, 2017

A finished quilt!

Would you believe it, I have actually gone and finished a quilt. After being sidetracked by trivia like work, family, study and weaving I felt the pull of the sewing room and I finished off this scrap number that I pieced months ago.



Not very exciting - scrap blocks and half square triangles - it was when I was in my "use it all up" mood and there were SO MANY scrap blocks in the drawer. This didn't make the tiniest dent of course. I also want to use up one of the two rolls of batting in the sewing room because they take up so much space ... that's a pretty strange reason to make a quilt isn't it. But a very good reason for actually finishing one off! There are another couple in the queue and I plan to get to them soon.

Straight line quilting, several inches apart, all very utilitarian. It is called "Ten Dollars a Day" because I was grocery shopping yesterday at Aldi and actually thinking that, if I had to and it was just me, I could feed myself on ten dollars a day, which it takes me less than ten minutes to earn. Isn't that ridiculous? When has food ever been that cheap? It wouldn't be very fancy food, but I could keep body and soul together. I was thinking this as I piled in the completely unnecessary smoked trout and soft cheese and beer....



I am currently half way through three weeks' leave. We are so quiet in the midwinter break at work that I'm taking leave again like I did last year (although not so much of it this time) and trying to catch up on domestic chores. This morning I went to the butchers to order a ham for Saturday's Christmas in July party, the hardware for a new exhaust fan and a hair trap for the shower, the mall to pick up some photos to put in the album and some cushion inserts for the covers I am going to make for the new sofa, I've just hung out the washing and now I'm off to the chemo ward for the regular injection and then into town to meet a friend for lunch. This afternoon I will attempt to make an intelligent contribution to the on-line tutorials we have to do for the uni course, some more of the reading for the assignment, then take number two son off to the first rehearsal for his new production and cook the dinner. Who has time to work? I mean really?

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Holiday week

It's the second week of the school holidays and we have had a lovely few days at the beach. The boys bitched and moaned of course because they cannot live without internet ... but once we were there they were fine. The weather was beautiful - cold but clear. And not nearly as cold as Canberra, although we had a few nights down to zero.



We went for walks along the beach, visited the sting rays and the pelicans, had back yard fires with bacon and fried bread, and drove an hour up to Ulladulla one day to poke around. And see beautiful Mollymook beach - I hadn't been there since 1995. It hasn't changed much. Some keen beans were swimming or surfing but far too cold for me. We went up the light house and watched for whales for a while - saw some not too far out flipping and flopping! It is very exciting when you see the first spout, then a tail, or a fin, or whatever they call them. We didn't have binoculars but still got a good look at them. Next time we will be more prepared (beanie and scarf against the wind! And binoculars) and stay a bit longer.



I also made a skirt, in keeping with my new resolution that the coast will be for garment sewing. My new loom is completely not portable and I find it too hard to drag patchwork up and down to the beach. I always forget what I'm working on. So the coast is where I keep my patterns and dressmaking stuff. It's not like I need clothes at all, it's just to keep me occupied, so no harm if I pick at things slowly over the months. I quite enjoyed making the skirt although it's very plain - I will take a photo when I wear it. These are the boys on the breakwater at Ulladulla. It was such a beautiful day.


And here are the pelicans down at the boat ramp. Just to the left of us is the fish gutting table, so you can throw your fish guts and heads into the water for the pelicans to take. They can't pick them up off dry land though - we know because we watched them try, it is quite funny to watch - and the seagulls get those ones.

Saturday, July 8, 2017

Two cotton scarves

Here are the two scarves I made from the five-metre mercerised cotton warp. Again, 24 epi and a simple pointed draft. The one on the left is plain weave, and the one on the right is a twill that goes one way then the other, which gives a sort of zigzag effect. 


Here's a close up of the twill one. The warp is just one colour - a pale blue. Weaving is so different from quilting with colours. You don't have to think about whether the colours match each other because they are not next to each other, they are actually mixed in together. Perhaps more like painting? I don't know, I don't paint.


Here is the plain weave one. I did different warps to mirror the weft - a thin green stripe, then pink, then blue, then a fat purple stripe and back again. It is quite light and dainty because again I think the 24 epi is too far apart for a plain weave in this cotton. Live and learn!


I used my new fringe twister to finish off the fringes. So much fun! And it's nice to have a professional finish. To be honest I don't know if it's much faster than doing little plaits, but I like the look of it. The fringe twister has instructions for adding beads and things to the fringe which sounds like fun ... maybe next time.


And here is it sitting on our new IKEA sofa. After 17 years of hard use we have finally gotten rid of the old one and found something new to sit on. It is very boring and is an enormous corner IKEA sofa in beige! Could we get any less exciting. But it is super comfortable and it was heaps of fun to put together. My husband stayed out of the way and removed the packaging while number one son did the tricky things with bolts and screws and I wrestled the cushions into the covers. Teamwork! We definitely had a feeling of satisfaction at the end. Getting rid of the old sofa it proving a problem though - we would be  happy to let it go for free to anyone who wants to come and pick it up but so far no takers. We might have to pay someone to take it away....

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

More from Hobart

The rest of the course went really well - I think I learnt something but it's hard to know what really sinks in. We have to do two written papers over the next few months - one smaller and one longer - so that will be the proper test. I'm using this as an expiriment to see if I want to do further study. I've been tossing up the last few years whether I do some post-graduate work, but I've always chickened out. It's hard when the kids are younger - although I know people do it - and whenever I get some spare time I would rather do something crafty than intellectual! But I shall see how the research part goes and if it's OK I might take it further. It's not going to make a blind bit of difference to my "career" so I really do have to want to do it for its own sake.
 

This is a house in Arthur Circus in Battery Point - I did a self-guided historic walking tour on our free day. Such funny tiny houses but apparently very expensive now. There are lots of lovely old houses, with beautiful views to the water.


This is the Aurora Australis - the icebreaker - much bigger than I thought it would be! I always thought antarctic boats were little tugboat things but that is, now I think about it, quite stupid. The only thing I know is that I will never set foot on it, unless it is dry dock, and maybe not even then.


And here are Tasmanians doing what Tasmanians do - sipping organic chai latte and listening to a three piece band outside an old theatre at a farmer's markets. I had a wonderful vegetarian empanada and sampled various cheeses. Awesome. Back to Canberra and work and reality today.

Saturday, July 1, 2017

Hello Hobart!

Oh dear, another week since I posted! I've finished the next two mercerised cotton scarves but I can't take any photos because I am holed up in Hobart this week. Just when you think you can't get any further at the arse end of the world you wind up in Tasmania ... but I am not disrespecting it at all because it is a lovely city. I am doing a parliamentary law and procedure course at the university of Tasmania which sounds a bit dry but is actually quite interesting. There are a couple of dozen people doing the course and we all work in various parliaments in Australia and NZ, so it's kind of like a university course and kind of like a professional development course. Which is good - relevant mostly and lots of like-minded people to swap geeky stories with.


They're keeping us fairly hard at it but Hobart is small enough to be able to go for a walk at lunchtime and after lectures and see quite a bit. Above is Salamanca - a largely intact Georgian waterfront - convict labour and a very dodgy history but now all art galleries and hipster bars. Of course. Hobart managed to avoid a lot of unrestrained development in the twentieth centurty (poverty and neglect rather than good decisions, although I may be doing it a disservice) and is now very lovely to my Canberra eyes. 


We have been spending some time in Parliametn House as well as the university - it was originally the customs house and built in 1830 before becoming the parliament in 1856. It is much less ornate than the Victorian Parliament which is full-on mid-19th century neo-classical and has pillars and columns all over it. This is much more charming. Although very inconvenient, and most business is carried on in dodgy 1960s extensions. 

We have a free day tomorrow (Sunday) and I'm going to wander around some more and see what I can see. You would think there would be some wool shops and weaving shops but I can't seem to find much ... or nothing that's open on a Sunday. I'll start at the farmer's markets and see where my feet take me!

Saturday, June 24, 2017

The Theo Moorman table runner

Here - finally - are some photos of the finished table runner that I did at weaving classes. I've washed, dried and ironed it. The technique involves weaving a ground cloth - the cream - then putting supplementary threads just on the front, that are held down by very fine threads. When we did the sampler I liked the translucent effect that you get when you put a fine supplementary thread over the top - and what happened when you overlapped them. So I did overlapping squares.
 

I tried to go with a 1950s abstract vibe, in pastel colours. The background cloth is a cotton/silk mix which makes it nice and nubbly, although using two separate yarns as one was a bit of a pain. Some of the supplementary threads are just about invisible, but that's part of the effect I was aiming for ... no, not really. I didn't have a clue what I was aiming for.



And here is the back. No sign of the colours at all. I hand-stitched down the hem. It makes quite a nice cloth, I might try and buy some silk and see what happens. Perhaps just for the weft though, not the warp. Now I have to find a table to run it along. Table runner! Never used one in my life. It's not long enough for a scarf, so I might fold it up and put it in the cupboard.


Thursday, June 22, 2017

Visitors, then working

It has been a nutso week at work as Parliament tries to wrap everything up before the long winter break. Which I am very much looking forward to - even in my gentle little corner there are waves of urgency washing up onto our sandy beach. Beach... I would love to be down the coast. Canberra has had some corking cold nights and freezing foggy days.

Last weekend we had visitors! My brother and sister-in-law came over from NZ for a weekend in Canberra followed by a week in Sydney. It was lovely to catch up - we did some very quiet things, like walking round the lake.



Saturday was a bit grey and grim, but Sunday was a beautiful day. We went to the bus depot markets for artisanal sourdough and handmade soap (actually neither of those things, but it gives you a pretty good idea of the markets) then dragged them up the hill to the trig point to see the landscape, then off to the outlet centre to look at sofas. Never say we don't know how to show people a good time!

It was wonderful to see them and we had a great weekend. They arrived and left on the train (my brother is a train driver) which added to the novelty. I go to the train station about once every three years ... one day I will actually get on.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Triple double chins

It's a tale of three selfies this week - two on the glorious south coast having a lovely walk on sparkling twenty degree afternoons ... and one stomping up to work on a foggy Canberra morning when it's exactly 0.5 degrees. I don't know why I look so worried in the selfies but I do know why I have so many double chins. Cheese, mainly, and chips.
 

It has been a crazy busy week at work which is my excuse for not blogging. I went down the beach just for one night to order the carpet. I had to measure the room myself because there was no way we were going to co-ordinate someone for a quote on any of the days when I could be there. But really, the room is a square, how hard can it be. They  made me sign something that said if it was horribly wrong it was all my fault, which I was happy to do. I measured it with a one-metre tape measure shaped like a panda from the dollar shop, so it should be fine.
 
 

I also patched the holes I'd made in the wall. It's not perfect, but at least it's not a great big hole. They were too big to use filler alone so I had to use the plasterboard mesh, which it is still slightly visible, which I think is bad, but it's done now. I replastered and repainted so it's better than it was ... but not perfect. I bought more brackets to re-hang the curtain rod but I didn't do it! I left it for my husband to do next time. I couldn't face the thought of stuffing it up again.

 
And this week has been extra crazy because we have to drop off and pick up Crutches Boy from school. He is much better though and prefers to walk short distances without his crutches. He was so happy to get the PICC line out, and onto tablet antibiotics. The wound is just about entirely healed and now only has a band-aid on it, which is awesome. We'll get him some physio and he should be back as good as new before you know it! What a relief.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Variety of twills

So this is my first effort - a variety of twills. I pretty much did a few inches of all the stitches in the book that would go on that particular draft (the way that it's threaded in the heddles. It's a pointed draft over six, note to self). And I changed colour every time I changed weave, so it's a bit motley.
 

It's a lot harder doing it at home than at uni with a very knowledgeable tutor to help you! I can see how many mistakes there are ... not just where I forgot what I was doing and did two rows the same (see weird pink line at right above) but also some of the warp threads weren't exactly the right tension, and some of the twills drew in a lot more than others. Which makes the edges wavey. The different textures are cool though. Quite a subtle effect.
 

And it's cotton so it crumples. I don't know why I didn't think of that but I wore it once to work to amaze my friends and confound my enemies and had to iron it before I could wear it again. Not actually super practical for a scarf. It's very light though and dainty. I might have not put it close enough together. I did a 24 epi sett (that's ends per inch, so 24 threads per inch, it's all in inches, just like quilting. Goddamn Americans, last imperial holdout) and it could have possibly gone a bit denser.


That's a couple of inches of plain weave at the bottom, and I plaited the fringe. I'm doing a much longer warp now - 6 metres - to make two scarves from the same warp. Just a plain draft but I might just pick one twill and stick with it.

My injured baby is rapidly improving, although exhausted from a couple of days back at school. They've given him a key to the elevators but I think it's all very difficult to hobble around from place to place. And the antibiotics are quite ferocious on his poor little system. Still, he is much better than he was.

Saturday, June 3, 2017

Back at home

Number two son is much better back at home now - although apparently still technically in hospital because he still has IV antibiotics. He is on Hospital In The Home where nurses come round every day and check him out, and he still has to wear his wristband. Which is fine by us. Much better for him to be at home than in hospital and heaps easier to keep him entertained. If only we didn't have so many stairs! Poor little thing is going like a rocket on the crutches but stairs are a nightmare. Especially with an elderly cat and a fluffy dog winding around your feet as you go. He face-timed into a couple of his classes yesterday which was fun, and hopefully school next week. Still with the IV and the crutches, but the doctors reckon he can, so why not.



I have been doing a bit of weaving in the quiet times. I've set my loom up in a un-used corner of the family room and warped it up with the new (shiny) mercerised cotton that I bought.



And weaving with my nice new boat shuttle that I never used on the rigid heddle because I couldn't figure out a way of winding the bobbins. The winders that you buy are $120 which seemed a bit excessive for a simple piece of kit ... so I used the electric drill instead.



It is amazing! Really quick and efficient. And we already own one. I have been so keen that I've nearly finished the first one so I'll take it off and wet-finish it and take same photos. I'm sure I'll have some free time....

Friday, May 26, 2017

What a week

Over a week since I posted! Unfortunately it's not because of all the fabulous weaving and quilting creations I've been churning out ... it's because number two son has been in hospital, and it's been a lot of waiting, worrying, hanging about and (foolishly) googling. After the GP on Saturday night, who said go straight to emergency, and X-rays and scans, then going back home, then back to the GP, and more scans, then back to the GP on Wednesday when he was just getting worse and worse, who called an ambulance, then emergency and admission to hospital, then surgery yesterday and he finally seems to be on the up! It turns out he had an infection around his ankle joint - in the lining around the bone and a bit in the bone itself - so they have cleaned it out in surgery and now it is lots of antibiotics and rest, and fingers crossed a full recovery. Very stressful though because he was in so much pain, and  clearly not well at all. I was busy at work early in the week so my husband stayed home and did the running around, and now he's showing his face in the office while I look after my baby (ie make him brush his teeth finally) and look at this lovely view.


Actually it is a great view - not only is nice to have light and trees to look at but it's over the road from his old primary school. So he could automatically connect to the wifi, and there's plenty of coming and going to amuse a child who can't actually walk properly at the moment. He should be going home in the next couple of days - but I just cannot fault his care. He's on the adolescent ward of the new Women and Children's hospital - which is beautifully set up with all sorts of things to make them comfortable and feel at home -  and he has just been surrounded by doctors and specialists and they have taken it very seriously, and operated within a couple of hours of deciding on surgery. Which is great, but scary. And it's free - thank heavens for first world government health care. We never take it for granted.

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Coral is an orphan

I made another orphan block quilt - it went together even quicker than the last one because I already had lots of the bits sewn together. And I knew what was at the bottom of the tub ... it was a journey of exploration last time. Into the wrinkly and thread-covered unknown.



I called it "Nice frock, Coral". To be said sarcastically I think. There is a small pieced "coral" in there somewhere from when I was doing a quilt that needed the word "coral" in it. I cannot remember why, or when, but there it is. It turned out a rectangular quilt - I was aiming for square, not that it matters.


It is quilted in big circles that (usually) touch each other. Like a massive pebble pattern. Here is a shot with the dog, helping me take photos. I was feeling quite sick yesterday so took the day off work and she followed me about, wondering what I was doing. Not much as it happened but when I napped, she napped. I am much better today - it's the drugs - I am pretty good at tolerating them but sometimes it is just like they all get together and make me feel awful. I'm not sure why, but it doesn't usually last more than 36 hours.



My weaving class has finished so my loom is back at home and I've started a new project. I ordered some 10/2 mercerized cotton sight unseen (you can't get many weaving yarns in Canberra, so it's all over the internet) and it is not weaving up at all in the way I thought it would. I think this will be the adventure of weaving as I try and get a clue what all these threads are and how they will weave in practice. I still have some of the wool that I dyed so I might go back to that - but I wanted to try different things. Might have to do LOTS more online shopping.
 

Monday, May 15, 2017

A Canberra week

The autumn colours have been particularly lovely over the last couple of weeks. Do I say this every year? I might do. Both in brilliant sunshine or against a grey sky, the trees look beautiful. The Chinese pagoda by the lake was the same golden colour as the leaves. I am saying I stopped to take a photo because it was so pretty, but I actually stopped because I was on a run and was completely puffed. And then I took a photo.
 
 
 

I had to walk down to a meeting during the week - through the trees and over the road. It's so nice to see some trees during the day. I walked past a pair of public servants going the other way up to Parliament House ... each dragging a wheeled suitcase. Not a great path for suitcases. Were they taking up documents? Or travelling somewhere? I didn't ask.



The public servants below were having more fun the next lunchtime - playing touch footy. It really was a lovely warm autumnal day and I was having a great half hour break and strolling through the gardens. Not as strenuous exercise as the touch footy players, but still pretty nice. I shouldn't whinge about my job ever when it lets me do this.


 
I hope you all had a nice mother's day - we went out for brunch with friends then I spent the afternoon warping my loom, refusing to share my chocolates, and listening to the "Every Musical Ever" podcast, which I can completely recommend.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

Sewing frenzy

I don't know why at the moment but I just feel like I have too much fabric and I need to use it up! It is quite unreasonable, because I don't have any more than I usually do, but for some reason it is bothering me. I've decided I have too many of the boring mid-browns and I'm trying to use them in a boring mid-brown quilt. And I have a great pile of scrap blocks, so they're being used, and I've sorted some of the very uglies for use as backing fabrics. I have learned to just roll with this mood ... it will stop soon enough. Here are the mid-browns, blending gently into the carpet.


I took one of my husband's old ties apart on the weekend too. He likes ties, but retires them after a few years of wear, and never throws any of them out. So there are a heap that could usefully be made into a quilt, where he can see them and admire them (hopefully) and free up some room in his cupboard. It was very easy to take it apart and there is a surprising amount of fabric in a tie. This is a lovely dotted silk.



I don't know what I'm going to do with them but I suspect something very simple. With reasonably large pieces to let the fabric show, because the ties are generally lovely and in vivid colours. Perhaps against a dark grey background? White or black would be too stark, and no colour will go with all of them. I need some patchwork fabric to include otherwise it will be too difficult (they are all cut on the bias) and too clashy.

I enforced device-free time on the children on the weekend - just a couple of hours - honestly you'd think the world had ended. No computer, TV, ipad or phone. Not even for homework. Number two son happily draws - which is his preferred pastime anyway - but number one son scratches around for things to do. I say excellent mum-things like "why don't you tidy your room" or "go for a walk and get some fresh air". He ended up making the North Island of New Zealand out of tantrix tiles. It took him ages because he not only wanted it the right shape but to have the different colour lines running between the tiles for as long as possible. Hmmmm.
 


 

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Scarlett Johanssen

I've made another quilt on my "scraps and solids" theme ... in case you weren't paying attention they are Twirly Shirley, Kinky Renee and Mean Green Evangeline. May I introduce to you all Scarlett Johanssen (or possibly Scarlett Johansson, I didn't google the spelling before naming and now I can't remember what it says).
 
 
This is another one from Tula Pink's 100 blocks modern city book, and it is block number 77. I was absolutely certain it would have a border, right up until I went to put it on, and it just didn't want one. So it's quite small.

 
The quilting is straight-line diagonals across the whole quilt. I felt like it needed something graphic. It's not stupid matchstick quilting though, because (a) I am not insane and (b) I want to use it as a quilt, not a table top ... it needs to actually fold. The quilting lines are probably just under an inch apart. No marking or measuring was done of course, that would go against everything I stand for.


It didn't make a dent in the scrap blocks so I am working on another one at the moment using them. Although there has been a short break for something more co-ordinated, to get away from scraps for a bit, and of course the second orphan block quilt is in progress too. So many quilts! The sooner I get my loom back home and take up my other hobby the better.

Friday, May 5, 2017

Another short week

So there was the short week before Easter, and the short week after Easter, and the short week for Anzac Day .... but that wasn't enough for me and I took Monday off work and stayed down at the beach on my own for another long weekend. There was sense in my laziness though - none of the flooring places are open on the weekend so I had to trek around on Monday and try and find samples of vinyl flooring that might remotely resemble the existing stuff. We would like to have the floor flow seamlessly from the living room into the new room, but I don't think it's going to happen.
 
 
These were the best three and they are hopeless. Not only the wrong colour but the wrong size! Apparently the standard size is now about seven inches wide, and the stuff we have is six inches. It must be at least four years old and there weren't that many brands around in Australia then, so we are thinking that we won't find a perfect match. Our back-up option is carpet in the new room, which is hardly a problem because it's a bedroom, and it's cheaper.
 

 
I went for a long walk on Saturday afternoon. The weather was still beautiful. I'd driven the first forty minutes from Canberra in a thick fog - the kind where you can't really see much more than 20m in front of you. Dad had luckily flown out Friday morning .... he wouldn't have been going anywhere on Saturday. But the other side of Bungendore I drove out of the fog into a beautiful clear day and it stayed that way until I left.

The river and the little jetties were all very tranquil. I needed some tranquillity after completely stuffing up a simple DIY task - putting up the curtain rods. Easy? Hah! One went up fine - screwed it into the wall studs. The other one didn't have studs in the right place so I just thought I'd attach it to the plasterboard .... a quick google to check on the right toggles, back to the hardware to buy a couple of different sorts just in case, and on with the drilling. Did it work? No. Not at all. I went back to Bunnings twice. And it kept falling out of the wall, no matter how many times I drilled and bashed and swore at that poor innocent plasterboard. That brand new, beautifully painted wall that now has holes in it I can put my finger in .... I don't know how my husband is going to fix it. Because it is his problem now. Luckily he can see the humour in it - he always thinks it's quite amusing when I am incandescently irate over THINGS GOING WRONG. This may be a survival mechanism developed through many years with me, or it might be the reason we have lasted many years. Either way, it's great.



I did go for a swim too, although it might be the last one of the season. Even with a wetsuit on my fingers and toes were a little bloodless by the end. And it was very flat - as you can see from the photo - so I didn't get to warm up by catching huge waves.

Sunday, April 30, 2017

What I'm weaving

I finally remembered to take a photo at weaving of what we're doing. It's Theo Moorman technique where you weave a background cloth and add supplementary wefts that sit on the surface of the cloth, held down by (theoretically) invisible tie down threads. You can use it to do all sorts of shapes, and make landscapes and pictorial things, but after doing a sample I decided to go with transparent squares. Or perhaps rectangles, sometimes I keep weaving and it is no longer a square. I am calling it a table runner, but really I'm just weaving.



We are fairly confident that the slubby background thread is a silk, and I'm weaving it together with a cotton so it's strong enough. It looks a bit coarse in the photo but in reality it's quite an interesting mix and is making a nice cloth. The squares are in pastels - some so pale they're hardly noticeable - and it's fun, but a bit fiddly. The tie-down threads tend to lose their tension and go a bit wonky. And you have to manually put the colours through so it's hard to get a rhythm up.  But in some ways that's good - it's not automatic and every little while you stop and think about where you're going to put the next colour.


My Dad went back to NZ on Friday after nearly three weeks here. As usual it went by incredibly quickly but he managed to not only help with the painting but do some gardening, and cook us dinner on his last night of fish that he had caught himself and brought over. Yep, another few kilos of beautiful frozen snapper fillets made it across the Tasman. Amazing, and we all love it. This is not a great photo because we mostly have our mouths full...
 

Thursday, April 27, 2017

Finishing off

I took the scrappy mountain majesties top down from the "pending" shelf and decided it didn't need anything more - good to go! A sort of baptist fan quilting pattern - very easy when it is in such nice regular strips - and now it is finished as a finished thing. Despite the very old fashioned colours and pattern I really like it.



The red helps, I think. I still have a lot of mid-browns and colours-of-the-woodland in my fabric pile so I'm going to have to do another one to use them up. It's hard though. The clear modern colours kind of leap out of the pile and demand to be sewn, but these take a bit more thought.


This is (yet another) of Bonnie Hunter's free patterns. She is amazing, and I love everything she makes. Scraps forever! I look down on your co-ordinated fabric lines and trendy designers. Pah. This quilt is called "The Affluent Middle Ring" because I was listening to some podcast and one of the ABC announcers was talking about talkback radio and engaging with your audience ... and he said "sometimes though I just feel as though I'm talking to the affluent middle ring" and I thought "No shit sherlock! You have an afternoon show on ABC radio, who the hell did you think was listening" and named my quilt accordingly.

Monday, April 24, 2017

Glorious autumn

The nights are cool, the leaves have turned, Canberra is looking gorgeous and I will post photos of the autumn leaves, like I do every year. Because every year I am startled by how pretty it is. I like winter, and cold weather, so there's no sadness in losing summer for me. Mostly relief to be honest - it was SO HOT for SO LONG. This is the Manchurian pear on our driveway. Our driveway is quite steep so my Dad raked this all up in one marathon stretch because we were having trouble backing the cars out. The tree dumps its leaves over about a week - great piles of them.



One lunchtime last week I went for a run down past Old Parliament House and back through the rose gardens. There are still the very last roses on the bushes. It all looks a bit shaggy and unkempt and ready for a winter tidy up and prune. Yellow roses are my favourite flower of all time - I know that it's a bit corny and boring to like roses but I can't help it. They are just too perfect, especially against a blue blue sky.



The weekend was nice and quiet with a lunch with friends to break up our own company. Dad has been doing some excellent gardening, and the boys have had friends around and other social events. I did some quilting too so I'll take some photos and share. Weaving starts again this Wednesday! Loking forward to it.

We bundled the dog in the car and walked round the lake on Saturday afternoon to enjoy the prettiness. She bounds with enthusiasm for the first half then stoically trots around the second half. Her target audience - six year old girls- were out in force so she got a bit of cuddling and patting. They love her fluffy cuteness.



Yes, number one son has outgrown his father by many inches. We knew it would happen...