Archive for January, 2009

Sampler Debut

We have just returned from a wonderful week of Junior Country Week tennis in Ballarat. The kids had a fantastic week of tennis and hanging out in the pool at the caravan park afterwards. Most of the Tennis Geelong families stay in the one park so we all get together for a fabulous week. We also have 30 – 40 children bussed up each day to play (for those whose parents are working). Paddy played in the U16 section and my niece and nephew were in U19. Paddy’s team made it to the semi’s and the others made it to the Grand Final. (Photos by the Ballarat Courier here). I took some embroidery with me and made a start on my sampler. I have been following along with Sharon B’s documentation of her sampler and decided I would try the stitches out myself. This initial sampler is 16 cm x 50cm (just over 6 inches x 20 inches) and is some linen I had bought when doing Sharon’s PLOS last year.


The title is backstitch in perle cotton. This first line of stitching is an exploration of Laced Triple Running stitch as seen in Sharon’s bands 1-4.

And some close ups.

sampler-c1sampler-cup2While in Ballarat I also popped into the local needlework shop and bought some hand dyed silk threads:

silk-threadcreswickeI might try some of these for the next bit of stitching on my sampler. I intend also using it for the Stitch Explorer Challenge that Sharon is running for 2009. The stitch for this month is ‘chicken scratch’.

We had a meeting yesterday for the Geelong Embroiderer’s Guild to get started on our xmas exhibition for the Johnston Collection (I blogged about it here). The group were happy with my proposal for ‘Sea Angels’ based on the figureheads of sailing ships. Mr Johnston travelled the world collecting Georgian, Regency and French Empire furniture, ceramics and decorative arts. There are many paintings of sailing ships in the collection and the theme of the xmas decorations will be based on his travels around the world. I am planning on experimenting with the process explained by Maggie Grey here to form the head/neck of the angels. The body will be based on a triangle shape to reflect the xmas tree centrepiece and will possibly incorporate fabric paper a la Pauleen’s sample, silk paper, fabrics, hand and machine embroidery, beading, hand dyed wool for the hair etc. The idea is to have the angels look like they are ‘of the sea’. I will be looking for lots of help from the new Creative Fibre Arts Group, who will also be invited to join in a workshop to create the xmas tree.

Finally, a request. I have been looking for a simple beading pattern to dress up this plain, black cardigan below. Any links or suggestions gratefully received. I have lots of hermatite beads of various types left over from this bag.



January 20, 2009 at 10:03 am Leave a comment

I was tagged (hmmm a while ago)

This week so far I have made my mum a chiffon cardi to wear over her dress to my nephew’s wedding on Saturday yesterday. I forgot to take a picture before I gave it to her, but she was very happy with it. ( I’ll post some photos of the wedding shortly, D1 has gone off to work with my car and the camera is in it)

I was going through my collection of patterns to find something to use (she’s a size 6 and most of my patterns are 12’s) when I came across some old ones. The one on the left was my 21st birthday outfit, the one on the right was my wedding dress. For the wedding outfit I made a skirt and top in taffeta and organza appliqued with satin leaves and afterwards shortened the skirt slightly (to ballerina length) and dyed it mauve (very 80’s).



I have also given the magazine (for catalogue killers) a dip in a bucket of water. I now have two bits to work with as it split apart!!! It is happily ensconced under some mulch under the rose bushes. I haven’t noticed the dog near it, the rose thorns keep him away methinks.

A couple of months back I was tagged by Mermaid’s Purse and said I would try to find time to pass on (well, find someone to pass on to). If I tag you feel free to take it as a compliment (and a recommendation to others to check out your blog)and not continue. The tagging requires 7 random facts about yourself.

1. I was a sports freak at school (and school sports captain) and generally played 3 sports at once. Some of the sports I have played/tried are: hockey, table tennis, squash, volleyball, basketball, tennis, football (AFL), surfing, athletics, marching, yoga, tai chi, aerobics, golf, softball, netball, lawn bowls, ten pin bowling….

2. One of my favourite pastimes is reading.

3. I love dark chocolate.

4. I’m fairly easy going most of the time but when really stressed I explode.

5. I am in the zone when I am sewing/stitching.

6. I love travelling anywhere, anytime.

7. I don’t enjoy too much hot weather.

I read many blogs but I will try to pick a range of types of blogs and hopefully not ones that have been tagged zillions of times.

Mara because her stitching is gorgeous and thought provoking

Beth because her felting is so individual and cool

Amy for the huge variety she blogs about

I op therefore I am because I do

Hayley because I love what she does to clothes in an ethical manner

and this one because I have a bag fetish.

I’m off to Ballarat today for Junior Country week tennis. (S2 is playing). Claudia, Paddy and I are staying at a caravan park for the week (the kids are happy because it has a great pool, tennis court, jumping pillow and kid’s holiday program each night). I’m happy because our cabin is directly in front of the pool/play area, so I’ll be able to sit on the balcony watching them and stitching. I’m taking fabric, threads and needles and hope to try out Sharon B’s stitches from her documentation of her band sampler. If I can get internet access at a reasonable price I’ll blog progress.


January 11, 2009 at 10:07 am 3 comments

Jimmy Rocks Torquay

I had a fantastic time last night singing and dancing along to Jimmy Barnes. Jimmy  and his band, which included his two daughters on back up vocals and his son on drums, were singing at the Torquay pub beer garden and we were squashed in like sardines. I went along with some girlfriends and one of my D1’s friends and it was great to see all the older Cold Chisel fans had brought their kids (18-20 year olds as you have to be over 18 to get into the pub) along and they were rockin’ too.

I have managed to catch up on a few outstanding p/cards and ATC’s. These will be sent off tomorrow with New Year greetings.

cards-08And here is a close up of one

cardAlthough they started with the same base, each one is slightly different. I decided to try out a few different colours and threads for the finishing edges. To add an Australian flavour I FME’d gum leaves onto organza to attach and collected some seed pods and she-oak seed capsules on my morning walk.

While my SIL was visiting from US she bought some sock wool and was knitting socks for the return back to the snow and freezing weather. Claudia was fascinated with the sock wool and how the stripes appeared so of course she ended up with a pair as well.

socksTo thank my generous SIL I made her a bracelet with some freshwater pearls and a beautiful stone someone had given me.

closeI had a lovely email today from Kim in the US who had seen my comment on Susan Lenz’s Cyberfyber site. Kim is visiting Australia and New Zealand in January and asked for some tips on places to see in Melbourne or Sydney. I put together an email with lots of links to places of interest in Melbourne, so if anyone else would like it just let me know. Also there is voting for the reader’s choice Postcard and ATC awards on CyberFyber so if you have time drop over, have a browse and leave some comments. There are some truly wonderful pieces of art on display, very inspiring.

Cheers, till next time.

January 5, 2009 at 8:34 pm 2 comments


January 2009

Notebook Project