Sunday, October 30, 2011

Quilt Show, Stitching and Crochet

I went to the local quilt show this weekend and spent a pleasant few hours wandering around but I can't say it was a great show. There were very few exhibitors and most of them showed the same old stuff. Nevertheless I was very excited to buy the last 2 packs of Moda's Malka Dubrawsky fabric. I have been following her blog for a while. She dyes her own fabric and Moda have copied her designs and are making it possible for us to buy these vibrant prints. I received one of her books for my birthday in April. I love how vibrant and energetic her stitching is.
I also bought a crochet book. It is written in US instructions but the illustrations are so good and they explain what the stitches are in both UK and US stitches.
My sister came over and this is the bag I am trying to copy.
I can see that my centres are larger than hers but they are close enough for me.
So what else have I been up to?
Some stitching.
Some binding.
And some elephants.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

More Crochet

I've been experimenting.

Once up a time my sister bought home a crazy crochet bag from Nepal. Apart from the fact that she should have bought more of them, the work in it is fabulous. I have envied and studied that bag for years now. It is old and shabby and yet she still wears it wherever she goes. It is made up of crochet squares.
I experimented with regular wool trying to get the basic pattern of the block. I am a very new crochet person so I really did not have a clue what I was doing. To make matters worse I have discovered that Americans and the English use different names for the same stitches. What a pain.
Anyway the regular wool just looked ordinary. The wool in her bag is made up of all sorts of blends of fibres.

I solved the wool problem in a dream. This is quite normal for me. I wake up and know what to do. About 30 years ago I studied how to do tapestry weaving. It's an awesome textile skill. I did about 3 short courses with the Australian Tapestry Workshop and still had, locked away somewhere, a fair amount of their reject wools that I just couldn't bear to part with. My loom is still hidden in my brother's cellar. I will have to rescue that one day.
Anyway, I found the wools and started making them into little 3 ply bundles and began making the crochet blocks. I have made enough blocks for the body of the bag. They are all sewn together  so now I need to stretch them as they are a bit lumpy. A wooden frame and some water spray should do the trick.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

New Stuff

I just had to get the fat quarter bundle of Paula Prass' Botanika range when Fabricworm went on sale. I saw it for $24 a mt locally but when this went out at $7.65 a yard I just had to get some backing as well. Love birds and butterflies.

I also bought some Piece O' Cake Designs Treasures and Tidbits backing and binding for the quilt on the right.
I have been so good using up old stuff from my stash but every now and again a little bit of shopping goes a long way. Work has been very, very stressful of late and I needed some cheering up. It helps!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Recycling and a Variegated Wool

It was Grand Final Weekend this weekend and that means chilling at home and enjoying all the hype around the game. I love footy, unlike most of my friends and I love it when my team wins and plays well.  I love sewing with the TV on, half concentrating on what is happening in the game while making things. 
On Thursday I was at my Mum's house and I found one of my Dad's old cashmere vests, hanging in the cupboard, full of moth holes. Mum doesn't throw out much. My son was rummaging through Dad's stuff too because these days his clothes are known as 'vintage'. It was a bit lean in the cupboard as my nephew had already raided Dad's stuff a few months earlier. Mum is thrilled to have her grandsons wearing Dad's clothes. I decided I wanted to wear something of his too so I took the old cashmere vest and cut it up, sewed some fabric on to it and made a scarf.
It is so beautiful and soft and took me about an hour to put together.

I am so besotted with granny squares but not into the changing of colours and sewing in loose ends. I bought a ball of variegated wool to avoid those annoyances. It is called Zauberwool and it is dreadfully expensive, as all wool seems to be these days. It makes the craziest squares and I am in love with the stuff.