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May 2011

A bit of Bijoux

I do love the small coordinating prints in Heather Bailey's Bijoux range of fabrics.


I took advantage of the strong Aussie dollar and recently ordered a few from the Heather Bailey online store.

And then when I saw this quilt on a blog recently, I knew what I was going to do with the fabric.

Swoon star

A quiet hour on the weekend found me in the studio trying out the pattern.

Swoon star detail

The other stars will have to wait as I have a busy week.  Lots on the To Do list.  Better get to it.

More Liberty

Townmouse will be at Mathilda's Market this Sunday at the Malvern Town Hall. In preparation I'm trimming some box pleat skirts with Liberty scraps. The skirts are trimmed in either a mixture of my favourite blue Liberty fabrics or pink.

Adelaide has been wearing a blue one of late and she's rather fond of it.


The fabric folder which holds my Liberty offcuts had grown to two.

Fabric folder

In addition to a storage box that holds larger remnants.

Liberty box

So I needed to do something with all that fabric. It felt good to reduce the amount I'm storing for a change. The two folders are now not bulging with scraps. It's rather cleansing.  I must do more of it.

Liberty stash

Kirsty from Kootoyoo has done something wonderful.  She's created a dedicated site for Our Creative Spaces, where you can share your link to your creative space.  Thanks Kirsty.

Liberty winter top

It's a frizzling day here today, as my boys would say; positively arctic. Hopefully that translates to a bumper snow season.

The heating is turned up and I'm in my woollens today, as I potter in the studio. I just made a little top for Adelaide in a Liberty remnant from about three Townmouse seasons ago.

Liberty winter top

It's the same pattern as this one, with less volume in the body and sleeves.  Adelaide is at creche today, so it remains to be seen if I have perfected the fit.

Liberty winter top detail

It's a bit hard to see the detail of the top in this busy fabric.  In this case that's a good thing, as there's a rather wonky seam there on the neckline that I'm not that proud of.  A few sewing challenges in this pattern.

My kitchen helper

Yesterday Adelaide and I made a cake together. It's a simple lemon cake with a lemon syrup that is poured over the top. I'm betting 9 out of 10 Aussie girls reading this have this recipe on their kitchen shelf.  It's from Stephanie Alexander's orange book.

One of my mothers' group friends used to make this cake when we got together with our new babes.  It's a quick and simple recipe and the boys all gave it the thumbs up after having it in their school lunch today.


Adelaide enjoyed the baking process.  Her role was that of quality control. Checking consistency (above) and taste with a bit of spoon licking.

Later yesterday she was happily running down Glenferrie Road after a visit to the butcher with me.  She tripped. Her rather pronounced forehead gets a beating as it's always the first part of her head to hit the deck. She split her forehead open and there we were, on the busy footpath, both covered in blood, her screaming and drawing a bit of a crowd. I didn't even have a tissue on me.

I decided a quick trip to the chemist was required. We dashed across the road - her screaming all the way and looking severely injured with blood all over her face - and we kitted ourselves out with steri-strips and wipes.  

By the time we got to Taekwondo to pick Tom up 10 minutes later she was happy as can be; just looking a little battle-scarred, and drawing shocked looks from the little children there.

But I'm happy to say my dodgy week has ended well today with a lovely girl's lunch organised by the boys' school for Mother's Day.  Always good to end the week on a high.

Sewing for sanity

I've pushed on with the kaleidoscope quilt and I'm liking it more as it gets bigger.

More blocks

It's been a busy, crappy week so these little blocks have been my therapy between dealing with less enjoyable projects. Like liaising with the builders next door who have done some damage to our property, placating sick and grumpy children, settling sibling disputes at 6am and washing vomit off bedlinen. Yes, it's been one of those weeks.  

A lowpoint was Henri appearing in the living room just as Kate and Will were about to say their vows last Friday, clutching his stomach and wimpering. He stood dangerously close to my teetering pile of clean laundry overflowing from the laundry basket (in the middle of the living room). Those 6 or more loads from our Easter holiday.

I managed to get him (almost) to the toilet before he was sick. So yes, as the wedding of the century unfolded I was on my knees in the loo with the pine-o-clean.

Quilt progress

Anyway, the quilt will have to wait as there are many other tasks on my list that I must get to today. When I find the time I'll be visiting these creative spaces via Kootoyoo.

Bits and pieces

I've been bitten by the quilting bug lately.  All those lovely quilts to be found on flickr.

I fell in love with this quilt yesterday - a kaleidoscope quilt. As it turns out, I have a Kaleido-Ruler in my arsenal, purchased at Amitie. I didn't even know about kaleidoscope blocks at the time of purchase, it just looked nifty. (Incidentally, Amitie is having a sale on Monday.)

Kaleidoscope piecing

This little ruler makes these blocks a snap.  It's much easier than I thought to get neat points all joining up.

Joining points

That's about the best piecing I think I've ever done, thanks to my clever tool.

Kaleidoscope blocks

I'm definitely not as comfortable making quilts as I am making children's clothes.  This was really enjoyable to make, but I'm not sure about the result.  I think there is too much variation in the strength of these different fabrics, that leave it looking like a bit of a mess.  I think I'd be better with prints of a similar intensity.  Oh, I don't know.  Sometimes it's all a bit baffling.  Maybe I'm just being too safe and too matchy-matchy.

I'd love to know what you think.  Should I push on with this? Or should I try the same pattern with different fabrics.  I do like the range, so I'm not sure whether to cut it all up, or save it for something that suits it better.  Please weigh in with your opinions, as I'm at a bit of a loss.