Friday 22 January 2016



I need help!  Do I quilt an allover/E2E pattern on this quilt or do I go for a custom job?
I know that a lot of you may not give an answer, but I just had to write this for my own piece of mind.  This quilt has been so long in the making that I'd just like it finished, but I can't make up my mind.  I've been asked to put it in a small local craft show at the end of February, but not sure I'll be able to finish it in time, so another show (as above) is coming up in June, so maybe that will be the way to go.  My problem with a custom job is that I have so many strange shapes and as I don't really do much free motion these days, need computerised patterns for these.  I've spent hours browsing sites and haven't come up with much so far.  Oh well, I'll just show some of the shapes, then we'll see what else I've been up to.

One section of side.

Notice the odd shapes I need to fill.

What else has been happening?

A large moth on the wall outside our sliding door.  My fascination  with bugs continues.

A short trip to a vintage market in a small town near to us resulted in these interesting items.

I have a project in mind for the wrought iron corner brackets, so I'll show that once finished.  They don't have any age to them.  The bobbin is something I've wanted for some time and they were once prohibitively expensive, but this was very reasonable.  It is propped against a notebook in my sewing area.  We were going to purchase another item, which hubby had mistaken the price on.  We both kept talking about it, so we went back, did a spot of negotiating and are now the proud owners of this.

An old canvas map of the British Isles.  It looks lovely above the hall table.
These photos aren't as good as I would have liked, but it has been raining today and only 21deg.  Yeah!  This morning before the rain I picked more of these.  I've had kilos of them and have probably sold about 4kgs and given away even more, plus what we've used and frozen for later in the year.  More still to pick.

And today in the post this arrived.

A bulb catalogue.
I know that I put my name down for a couple more so hopefully they'll come soon too.
Today, as it was cooler, saw me do a spot of baking, namely an Anzac slice and some peanut butter squares.
I may be quiet on the comments front over the weekend, as we are on grandchildren duties Sunday and Monday, so everyone have a great weekend and take care.

Wednesday 13 January 2016


Here's a short version and some photos of our Morris Minor.

Back in 1991, whilst living in Tasmania, hubby spied an MM poking out from some large blackberry bushes on a farm.  He approached the farmer to buy it and was told, "If you can get it out, it's yours."
He and the 2 boys went along and managed to extract it and brought it home in this state.

Originally a panel van.
This what it looked like at first.  So much rust and a broken chassis meant a radical rethink.  All the work was done by hubby except for a few minor bits, such as re-chroming the radiator grill and new upholstery on the seats (eventually).

Top:  rust.  Bottom: broken chassis.

The next few photos are of the work in progress.  I've scanned these photos and some aren't the best quality (or poses), but you'll see the scale of the work involved.

Work underway whilst on her side.

Extending the cab to fit in my 6'3" other half.

The cab back finished.
Once a lot more work was done on the chassis, it was remounted and ready for an engine.  As it came without an engine, we bought a MM engine, which we later replaced with a Toyota engine.

Sprayed red, engine and 2 additions which kept popping up in all the later photos. (Our two boys as teenagers)

As it was not possible to keep the van part, hubby decided to make it into a ute (pickup).  Below is the start of the tray for the back.

Uhm, not the best photo in the world, but the only one we have of the progress on this bit.
Now for the exciting part.  Done, except for the sides of the tray.

Here she is for a photo with DD's Mini, our black sedan and part of my Cortina.

We'd had the black one since 1988 and belonged to the MM Club of Tasmania and it was great for outings with our 3 children, but hubby also loves a challenge.

In 1992, it was finally ready for it's first big challenge.  A trip to South Australia with The Morris Minor Touring Club of Australia.  We would be camping (just the 2 of us), which we'd not done very much of.  Here we are ready to go.

Err!  Yes, that is us.  How times change.
She has travelled to many places over the years including Alice Springs (7,000kms round trip), Ceduna on the edge of the Nullabor, back to Tasmania and lots of places in between. In that time we went from camping to using a camper van, shown below.  Camping in a 3 man tent wasn't all that comfortable and I'll leave it to your imagination as to how a tall person gets dressed in one.

The camper trailer.

 Hubby used her as his work vehicle as well, hence the amount of time that's being spent on her now.  She's been back on the road for 23 years now.


My first car when I was 18 in 1967.  My grandfather helped me purchase it and I had it for nearly 2 years and had lots of fun in her.  This is the "only" photo I have.

Wash day!

A short story of CARS, not quilting, but then we all have lots to life outside our hobbies.
Take care all.

Friday 8 January 2016


First I'd like to thank all for last post's comments.  We had a couple of those scary phone calls from someone with a foreign accent, saying they were going to cut our internet off, so tried to use it fleetingly for a couple of days.   They didn't of course, and as soon as they say that, I just hang up. Getting nothing from this old lady, though if they ring again, I'll be calling the complaints number.

A few odd photos.


Fox oven mitt, socks to keep my tootsies toasty warm, 2 scented candles and a candle mat handmade by Jo, a souvenir pin and a love spoon key ring.  

Close-up of pin depicting an Australian flag crossed with a Welsh one.  A very fitting end to a wonderful swap.
I can't thank Jo(2) enough for her lovely gifts and thoughtfulness.  Also a big thanks to my other Jo(1), for initiating the 12 Days of Xmas Swap.

I've finished the body of my CAL rug and have taken a photo, albeit in the garden over the handrail of our stairs, so that you don't see my wavy edges.  I still need to do the borders, which don't seem too easy.  Ugh!

I'm also working on this lot of fabric, all from my stash and last quilt I'm making for "that" book (giggle).

Not a lot happening on this front due to lack of rain, and our weird weather.  Although it's not been hot over the last week, it's been strange, sort of cloudy and close.  Hubby bought me 2 roses for Xmas, one being a favourite I've had before.  Pierre de Ronsard, which is a climber.  It has started flowering with very strange looking flowers, so cut one and took it out to the Rose Nursery, where we found that his are also the same at the moment.  He thinks it is because of our very hot days around Xmas and not much rain.

Poor Pierre, which should be pale pink.

My black scabious looking good though.
I did say that I'd show a photo of our Morris once hubby had finished doing the back.

Taken this afternoon out at the Rose Nursery.
Today, I noticed that it's been a good day.  First, I actually sold some blueberries to one of our local fruit and veg shops.  We've had heaps and they said they'd take some if I took them in.  I've been giving them away as well and met some of our neighbours in the process.  I'm even going to make a small amount of jam, I think.
At the nursery, it was great talking roses with someone else who loves them.
This morning  in town, I called in at a shop that opened whilst we lived in Ballarat and found that one of the salesgirls is an avid quilter.  This shop sells cookware and has some lovely range cookers and also have cooking classes, which I certainly didn't know about.  She took my  phone number and said she'd love to come around and see my big machine.   Funny how things can come about.
Enough of my ramblings for now.  The weekend is nearly here for us.  Wonder what it will bring?
Take care all, Susan.

Wednesday 6 January 2016


Weather wise, it's been a strange start to the year.  Extremely hot the first two days, a little cooler on Sunday, then cloudy and mild Monday and today, we've actually had rain.  Not lots, but still "rain".
I think our garden will appreciate it.

12 Days of Xmas Swap.

Next 4 little parcels opened.  I only have one more to go and then I can show the last 4.
I can't believe that Jo and I have actually thought of some of the same items to send each other, being pins and pincushion, calendar depicting our own country/state, buttons and handmade bits.  Love the calendar and will make, maybe, the recipe for each month.  We'll see.  Thanks Jo.


We headed south to Inverloch to have lunch by the sea and whilst there saw many of these, as it was quite breezey.

Kite surfers.
Admittedly not the best photo, but they were so quick to capture and this one has no people in it, which I do worry about at times.  We also saw rays, swimming in the water around the jetty.
We made our way back  along the coast before turning inland toward home.  We stopped and snapped this photo of Eagle Nest Rock.

Next carried on to Cape Patterson and realised we were on a no through road and parked at the end and walked to the end of a headland and looked out to sea.

This the walking track over the sand dunes.  It certainly gave our legs a workout.

A photo below of the hills, looking so dry already.


Ok, so no challenges this year, but gentle goals.  I felt that I didn't take up any of my challenges last year and as I don't make resolutions either, I'll just wing my way along with craft etc.
I know you've seen the "big star" quilt before, but it has borders now and I've got to find some backing fabric, which will definitely be 'wideback', as I have no intention of piecing one.  The quilting will be an easy edge to edge design, so that I can actually say IT'S FINISHED.

Looking through my "to quilt" box, I found a small  quilt that needed a border, so put that on yesterday,
Has anyone got "lots" of  SPECIALITY RULERS?  Hmm, I have.
I've used some and think, it's about time I tried out some more.  Every now and then I'll pull one out and give it a go with some of my stash.  What brought this on?  The small quilt was made many years ago with one, as you'll see.

The small quilt.

The ruler I used.  Don't laugh, but I bought because it had a funny name.

A small box of rulers and a big basket. with some in the other side too.
I'll discuss more about these sorts of rulers as the year rolls on.  Maybe some one would like to join in with me to use some of theirs.

Last, my darling hubby made this out of some scraps of timber he had on hand and these two corellas were our first visitors.  I hope that we can attract some of the more colourful birds too.  Buddy, my magpie still visits most days, but doesn't seem interested in the wildbird seed, although he's watching these 2 from the fence.

This post has been written over 2 days, and this morning I took more photos of bits and pieces, but will leave these for Friday.  This cooler weather is a huge bonus, so will make the most of it today.
Take care all, Susan.