Missing in action!


posted by on Blooming Springtime, Botanika, Millrose Cottage, Patterns, Tulipa


Well…….. it’s been a while!!  Somehow despite me making a promise to myself that I’d post more often, life does tend to get in the way.  Not that I haven’t been doing any quilty things, but……….sometimes time just gets away.  .

I’ve been really busy since my last post, doing lots of other “stuff” but also including some quilting – I’m trying to finish two quilts – Mimosa and Tulipa but they both seem to be going very slowly.  I keep on getting distracted by diamond and hexagon quilts.

and what exactly have I been doing?

A week away at Byron Bay running a different kind of workshop (I also run meditation workshops).  We have one of the most beautiful retreat centres, Sangsurya and have the best time!

A fabulous day at Linda Collins viewing the Chester County Criswell Quilt which was the main feature as well as a number of other beautiful antique quilts.  Janet O’Dell showed us one of her quilts that I absolutely fell in love with – it had the most divine fabric.  Oh I wish some of the fabric used in that quilt were available… sigh…….

Another weekend meditation workshop in the Blue Mountains(aren’t I lucky I get to go to all the best places!)

My last Botanika class at Mill Rose Cottage.  I had a small lovely group of quilters, Lizzie, Lyn, Lyn 2 and Cheryl whom I hope to see again for more classes.  These lovely women were my “testers”.  Botanika was quite a difficult pattern to write and we managed to iron out all the little errors.  So that pattern is now available at Mill Rose or on my website.


That's Floral Beauty and Botanika hanging up at Mill Rose Cottage


Lyn's Botanika - so different to mine - and so beautiful!

My weekend away with Essendon Quilters to Castlemaine.  This came about unexpectedly.  I wasn’t supposed to be going as I had a class to teach, but fortunately (for me at least) it was cancelled so I was a last minute edition.  For the last two years we’ve met at the Castle Motel where we have a large room for sewing where of course nothing has to be put away at night – wonderful.  I missed out on this retreat last year due to other commitments so was very pleased to be able to attend this year and catch up with many old and new friends.  Sorry no photos here.  I took my camera and only remembered on the last day when most women had left.  I even managed to catch up twice with Jennifer for lunch (some sort of record I think).

Now something that is dear to my heart – labels!  Yeah…… I know …….. boring…… but….. after spending so much time making beautiful quilts I feel that the label should in some way reflect the quilt that I make, and I try to do this with most of my quilts – if I have time of course.  Here are a few of my labels:


Labels for Auntie Greens Garden and The Clamshell Quilt

Labels for Blooming Springtime and Floral Beauty

Till next time – hopefully sooner rather than later!



posted by on Mosaics, Patterns


For those of you who have been asking, here is my latest quilt.



Homespun Magazine


posted by on Homespun, Patterns, Stonehouse Baskets


Have you seen the latest issue of Homespun?  My quilt Stonehouse Baskets is a project in this issue – No. 111 Vol 13 No. 8.

Catherine Sanchez got in touch with me last year and asked if I’d do a project for the magazine.  Of course I said yes as I’ve always enjoyed reading Homespun.  She told me that she’d like something for her “garden issue”.  I had been playing around with some baskets, a block of which was in Gardenhurst.  I thought the baskets looked so cute and felt that they could definitely be made into a larger quilt.  So I knew that this quilt was destined for Homespun.

It took me a few trials to come up with the current pattern, working and reworking it until I was happy with the results.  By this time Catherine wanted some visuals of the quilt.  All I had done were a few baskets and a rough pencil outline of the border, which I photographed and sent to her.  I’m glad when she said that she liked it!

The quilt has been quilted by Rebecca Rae of A Stitch N Line of Jindabyne.  I was very pleased with the end result.

Walking through the Craft Show in Melbourne a few weeks ago, I was surprised to see the quilt up at the Homespun stand – but it was lovely to re-acquaint myself with it again as it had been quite a while since I’d last seen it.


Stonehouse Baskets

posted by on Clamshells, Floral Beauty


I spent another happy day with Andrea and a group of her friends, teaching them the easy way of doing a clamshell quilt.  We had 9 ladies all fired up to start.  It was fun to see the different fabrics chosen – including reproductions, scrappy, pinks/browns, red/cream, greens (in tiny clamshells)  and “gelato colours”.

Carolyn, Rosie, Lyn, Annie, Andrea, Alison, Andrea, Judy, Dee

We spent the morning working really hard and then the afternoon?  Well…….. we had some really interesting discussions going on – which I’m sorry I can’t talk about because if I do they will have to kill me!!

Everyone brought a plate (except me as tutor – aren’t I privileged?), so there were many wonderful things to eat for morning tea, lunch and afternoon tea.  Yummy.

At the end of the day we placed what they had all done on the table for a photograph and I must say everyone was pleased!  However the photo I took didn’t turn out very well, so sorry no photo!

Carolyn has been working on my Floral Beauty pattern and I was blown away by her choice of fabric and her very clever use of fussy cutting.

Love that fussy cutting!

I can’t wait for her to finish the quilt to see her choice of fabrics – which is so very different to mine and so beautiful!

posted by on Blooming Springtime, Clamshells, Classes @ Patch n Quilt

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Taught a class of lovely ladies at Patch n Quilt today – 4 women doing clamshells and 3 doing needleturn appliqué using my Blooming Springtime patterns.  I don’t really have a pattern for clamshells – I just show them how I did my own quilt with lots of input from my favourite quilting guild, Essendon Quilters Inc.


My clamshell quilt

I enjoy seeing how women progress – women who say that they are “hopeless” at needleturn appliqué and eventually begin to love needleturn appliqué as much as I do.


Vicky decided to embroider a bee in this block - love it!

Angela is loving every minute of it!

Margaret is preparing as much as she can to take on a trip

We discussed how informative doing classes can be – and to be honest I still enjoy doing classes myself.  Not only do I learn from the tutor but with so much experience within a class, everyone brings their own techniques, advice and new ideas  to the class.  In one class where I was the tutor a “newbie” (or so she said !) showed me a better way of doing reverse appliqué!  (and you know who you are!)

And of course, teaching at a quilt shop can be a real drag – not!!  What could be better than just popping into the next room where there is a whole fabric shop just waiting for you to play in!  Patch n Quilt – which used to be The Drapers of Mount Macedon – is one of my favourite shops.  I just wish Mary would let me take a photo of her!  I love the service and everyone gets a great “hello” and lots of attention – and sometimes even I’m allowed to help out too!

Roxanne and her clamshells

I love teaching!


posted by on Classes @ Jukejema, Classes@ Carolyn's Quilting room, Mosaics

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I had some fun – and exciting – email a couple of days ago with the lovely Kim Goatcher from Jukejema.  We had been talking about me teaching there but as I live inMelbourne and her shop is in Nowra I didn’t know when that would be possible.

Today, I was going through my teaching schedule and realised that I would be down in Wodonga at Carolyn’s Quilting Room on the 26th and 27th October doing a trunk show on Friday 26th and teaching Floral Beauty on Saturday 27th.  Well……. I have to take all my quilts for this trunk show and I have to drive there.  It got me thinking ……… I’m almost halfway to Sydney….. and a little further on to Nowra.  Well…… how about I just drive on to Sydney after Wodonga.  Of course we both got very excited with this prospect.

So….. I will be doing a trunk show at Jukejema Quilting Barn on Monday 29th October followed by a two day class of MOSAICS on Tuesday 30th and Wednesday 31st.  So if you are in that area, check in with Kim.  I’d love to see you there.

Detail of Centre Block of Mosaics



posted by on Chat, Patterns, Tulipa


The start of a new quilt is always exciting for me.  I draft the pattern, then redraft it, then re-work it, then re-design it …….. you get the picture!  When I’m finally happy with the rough draft, I then spend time drawing each shape to how I see it in my mind’s eye.  This is the part of the designing process that I enjoy the most.  Once that’s done I’m happy – I have my quilt down on paper!  As I have a day job I then have to wait for a free day – usually on a weekend if I’m not teaching somewhere – as I much prefer to choose fabrics during the day with natural sunlight

Then comes the process of choosing – and playing – with fabric.  This too is fun.  I try and limit myself to a certain number of fabrics.  I choose from my large and extensive stash (don’t we all have them?), say 10 each of the colours that I’m going to work with.  I try not to vary from these fabrics…… so I don’t do that agonising over fabric choices that I once used to.

My fabric choices for Tulips - I know it looks messy but............

Then is the fun part –  cutting and gluing.  I love this part the best because I know that I can soon start sewing!!  Yeah!!

All ready for cutting - of course I can't do without my music!

I used to be quite messy with my designing.  I’d start with lots of A4 papers with scribbles all over them which I’d then put into a plastic envelope.  The last quilt I did made me realise how difficult it was trying to understand some of my scribbles as well as keeping track of all my papers.  I then took a leaf out of Margaret’s book and decided to be more organised.  So now I have a “design book” – which sounds very professional and makes me feel as if I am a “professional designer” instead of a “dabbler”!

By the way the new quilt will be called TULIPA – named with the help of my friends who came to the Craft Retreat with me.  I find naming quilts quite difficult and wish I was more inspired with this.

posted by on Botanika, Classes @ Millrose


Had my second Botanika class at Millrose Cottage.


This is a 9 block quilt with sashing and viney border.  I had made this quilt quite a few years ago based on  postcards with leaf drawings.   When I completed the quilt I was told that the time wasn’t right for “leaves”.  So the quilt sat in my cupboard until Sue from Millrose Cottage saw it and asked if I had a pattern.  Of course, I hadn’t written out a pattern as yet so had to get cracking.  Sue and I decided to offer it as 3 classes with about 6 weeks between classes, which gave me lots of time to write out the pattern.

I have four fabulous girls in my class and you can check out their progress.  I always find it amazing how different all the quilts turn out – each one using their own special “blend” of fabrics.

Liz's blocks - she's using felt in some of her blocks

Lyn's blocks


Lynne's blocks

Cheryl's blocks

I am still trying to catch up with the pattern and should have it completed by the time we come to the last class in September.

Teaching at Millrose is so much fun.  The work area is large, comfortable and full of natural sunlight.  A great place to sew.


A busy class - all working hard!

Today was also Ballan Farmer’s Market day  with many visitors to the market as well as casual “strollers” through the shop and the classroom – with lots of interest in what we were sewing.  Lunch is served next door (included in the price of the workshop) – the tomato soup being a favourite and the afternoon tea of custard slices is to die for!!   Can’t wait for my September class.

posted by on Mosaics. Craft Retreat

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Don’t you just love quilting retreats?  The preparation that went on before is such that one would think I was spending a week there!  But you never know…… I may get tired of one project and want to do something else.  When I got to the retreat I found that most of my quilting buddies did the same – you should have seen the amount of “stuff” that we all brought with us.

We spent a fantastic weekend at The Craft Retreat in Hepburn Springs.  What a beautiful place.  The house has been designed specifically for quilters in mind.  The room that we sewed in was large with lots of natural light, fully stocked with all the gadgets and gizmos that we love and a great design wall; room for 9 to sleep comfortably, large dining/kitchen and relaxing lounge area.  None of us wanted to leave.  Of course, great food, good wine and wonderful company.  We’ll be back next year.  I wish I’d taken more photos – I meant to but got caught up with sewing and conversation!  I worked hard on trying to finish Mimosa, but conversation got in the way!!


Sewing around the work table

On the way there I caught up with friends at Digs in Newstead for a coffee and some business!  More to follow later.

Jennifer & Margaret at Digs .... very focused..... you'll just have to wait and see!!

I’m madly trying to get quilts ready in time for the Quilt and Craft Fair in Melbourne from 26 to 29 July 2012.  I’ve completed Mosaics and I’m in the process of getting all the “paperwork” done.  Getting a photo done was beginning to be a real pain……the weather wouldn’t cooperate here in Melbourne and time was getting away with me.    I bit the bullet and had photos done at a photographic studio – and I’m very pleased with the results.  So look out for Mosaics at Somerset Patchwork & Quilting.


posted by on Chat, Patterns


Long time no post!!

Its now been 8 weeks since Margaret and I got back from the US and I think I’ve only just stopping “running”!!  So much to catch up on.

I finally finished Auntie Green’s Garden, the pattern of which went on sale at the Craft Show in Sydney.  It is now available from my website and it will soon be available at Somerset. 

I’ve been madly designing.  As I sometimes only have weekends free, this has been somewhat difficult but………  at least I have some new patterns completed and some on the drawing board.  I like to have my appliqué pieces all stuck down with glue so that its portable and I can spend a whole day just preparing – one of the many aspects of designing that I love – my least favourite being writing pattern!  I should have another new quilt all stuck down by tomorrow.  So that makes it two quilts that I can take around with me.

My next new pattern will be launched at the Craft & Quilt Fair in Melbourne.  More details to follow.

Part of Mosaic quilt


Here is the centre of my new quilt in progress which I am really really enjoying.  Its my interpretation of Nancy Horsfall’s Wedding quilt.

Image of Mimosa quilt

Centre of Mimosa

I had a trunk show at Essendon Quilters on Wednesday night.  I’m still waiting on some decent photos and will post as soon as I have them in my hot little hand.

Also looking forward to my quilting group’s retreat next weekend at The Craft Retreat in Hepburn Springs.  A whole weekend to sew and eat, and sew and eat and drink, and sew some more.  No other responsibilities – yippee!

So keep tuned…….. hopefully I will be posting more often – after yet another lesson from my web person, Jennifer.

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