Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Easter weekend and knitting























We had a fab Easter weekend, time spent catching up with family,  a yummy shared lunch after church on Sunday, and sewing and knitting time for me.  Monday was fine so we tripped up to Auckland to visit the War Memorial Museum.  It is one of those places you could spend days looking through, we spent about five hours exploring it.  I loved the Easter egg display, the stained glass ceiling, the human history including clothing and gorgeous china and furniture, and the natural history.
I have been finding time to get some finishes over the last weeks: I have made my first PIF gift and have started the second, and have sewn a few items of clothing.  The tricky bit is getting photos of me in the clothes!  The sun was shining this morning so Charlie got some photos of my recently finished cardy, started back in February.  It is the Miette cardy by Andi Sutterland, a free pattern found here.  The only changes I made was to add a little extra to the length of the body and sleeves.
I had two skeins of yarn left so I knitted myself a cowl, also a free pattern found here.  I knitted with two strands of yarn to get the right weight.  You can see I wore it to the museum on Monday, even though I haven't blocked it yet!  I must say a big thank you to all those talented designers who give us free patterns so generously!  Wendy xx

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Western bluebird, fabric and fashion

Charlie and her friend Louise in 50's clothes
I just put the last stitches into the Western bluebird, my Christmas make for March.  It is another Posie: Rosy Little Things pattern from here and is an ornament to hang on my little white Christmas tree.
Last week an aunt gave me a box of her old fabric remnants and a Quilting Patterns book that looks like it will be very useful.  I have had such fun looking through the fabrics and am using some for a secret project.  It has a bit of a vintage vibe I think.
In June this year Charlie is going on a mission trip to Vanuatu with her school.  The team will be installing two large concrete water tanks as well as doing other things.  Charlie is excited to be going but the fund raising has had a huge impact on our time, hence the lack of making and blogging so far this year!  The latest fundraiser was a vintage fashion show which was a lot of work but a very successful evening.  The girls all looked gorgeous in clothes and accessories from the 50s, 60s and 70s.  Perhaps after June normal transmission may resume?  Wendy xx

Friday, 14 March 2014

Works in progress

Paul gave me a Christmas gift voucher for my local Bernina store and I made time recently to do some fabric shopping: the green fabric will be a skirt, the blue is almost finished and will be a top, and the patterned fabric will be a wrap-around dress.  I haven't bought any clothes (apart from lingerie) for seven months which feels strangely liberating!
My knitting I pick up in the evenings sometimes, I have almost finished the first sleeve.  It is actually a lovely golden yellow but the colour doesn't show up in the photo.
I started making a Christmas ornament for February and just didn't get it done, I'm hoping it will be completed for March instead.
I have started some secret sewing on my Pay it Forward gifts (see here), I would love to get them made in the next few months.
One finish I have had was little beaded booties, there's nothing like a deadline to get a gift made quickly!  These are for a colleague who is having a baby girl next month.
And the last picture above ... yep, we got to spend a weekend recently back at Papamoa beach.  It was for church camp and we went a day early which was such a treat to visit our summer holiday spot.  And yes, I did have a swim in the ocean :) Wendy xx

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Chateau hexagon and balls of yarn

I finally finished the row of flowers for my Chateau Hexagon block seven so I was able to join it to the quilt and add the row of hexies.  A poodle button goes on this block too in the gap among the flowers.  Only one more block to go for this quilt but I will put it aside for a while as I have some gifts to make.
My dear mum's wool winder came in handy this week.  I had a bit of fun turning hanks of yarn into usable balls and started on a new knitting project. I am loving the bright summery colour! And isn't my couch companion cute, Holly perches on the arm of the couch right beside me. Wendy xx

Friday, 14 February 2014

Thrifted fabric and Valentine's

*My time to sew has dropped off dramatically with the rush of February: back to school routines for the kids, back to work for me, and all my extra duties started up again.  Last week, while waiting to pick up Charlotte and Josh from the school bus drop-off, I popped into my local thrift shop.  The owner had just been given two boxes of fabric from an old tailor and she let me have a rummage through them.  This navy satin with white spots caught my eye immediately and I knew it would make the perfect Jasmine blouse which is a Colette pattern.  It sewed together easily and goes well with the navy skirt I made in December last year.  I have been following along with Colette's Wardrobe Architect series, with the idea of planning and building a wardrobe that suits me and works well together, very interesting!
*Paul's cactus has been flowering prolifically and looks beautiful against the morning sky.
*We don't really "do" Valentine's day but I enjoy making a special dessert for Paul and the kids to remind them how much I love them.  I found an easy Chocolate Mousse recipe with only three ingredients:

Three Ingredient Chocolate Mousse
200g 70% dark chocolate
2 cups cream
1 cup marshmallows
Carefully melt the chocolate, 1 cup of cream and the marshmallows together. (I do this in the microwave.)  Allow to cool to room temperature.  Beat remaining 1 cup cream and fold through the chocolate mixture. Pour into bowls and refrigerate until set.  Recipe from Annabel Langbein.

Enjoy! Wendy xx

Monday, 3 February 2014

Summer loves

Visiting our local zoo on Monday; thrifted picture (love the quilts hanging on the line); second hand books bought on holiday; fresh eggs every day; delicious cherry tomatoes; home grown corn; a new little doll to sit on our piano; so much to be thankful for.  Wendy xx

The doll is Charity from Homespun magazine, Volume 13.7.  I thought it was such a cute pattern I made a second one as a gift.

Monday, 27 January 2014

Summer holiday

Summer holidays, oh how I love them!  The teenagers are happily occupied with their friends in the camping ground and I rest and read and stitch and walk.  One of the things I appreciate most about our holiday is the complete break away from work and lists and responsibilities.  Then somewhere along the way I become ready to grab my diary and write lists of things I want to accomplish at home, things I didn't have the energy to do at the end of last year.  Once home I am refreshed and motivated to get my list done :)
My summer holiday stitching consisted of a red wool coat ornament for my January Christmas item, made from this kit, and my Chateau Hexagon quilt.  I am loving the addition of the rows of hexagons.  Now I'm up to block eight, stitching a row of pretty flowers.
Thanks again to Narelle for hosting the one Christmas item a month, this year we have a dedicated blog here.
I have lots of blog reading to catch up on, I will do my best to do that over the next few days :) Wendy xx