Friday, May 30, 2008

Quilt and Craft Expo

Have been madly preparing for the QCE next week at Rosehill - it's a trade only show where, hopefully, we will pick up more retail outlets - get more of our patterns into the shops!
But it has not all been smooth sailing! Not only did I have a busy week, but the photocopier needs repairs and the photo booth where I have my photos done has been out of order, prompting a state of panic! Wanted to get lots of patterns put together this weekend, but cannot, so we're having an enforced rest (I suppose this is a good thing)! Hmmmm....... The Bill and Midsomer Murders ....... looks like chocolate tonight in front of the telly!
Photo shows "Teddybugs Sunflower Quilt", made up of the four sunflower stitcheries. It's a specially priced "freebie" if you purchase the four stitcheries (see website).
For those of you who like music, let me spoil your day! Here is a link to my son's band, Hatchet Dawn. Turn on your speakers and enjoy! (Or should I say, get out the earplugs!!! My apologies in anticipation! (If the link doesn't work copy & paste it into your web browser.)

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Travelling Teds

This is "Travelling Teds", one of my first designs - inspired by a holiday we went on to the UK - I came home with a suitcase full of bears! We stayed in a very pretty little town in Wales, Llangollen, where my grandparents used to go for their holidays. There we found a lovely little shop called "Paws for Bears" run by a very friendly couple, Chris and Jeanette. Naturally I "adopted" a few teds, one of which has a growler. He went into my cabin bag when we flew back to Australia, much to the surprise of a fellow passenger who set the growler going when he put his bag next to mine in the overhead locker!
That was six years ago - I don't think Paws for Bears is there any more. I'd love to go back for another holiday!
I'll just have to keep on sewing!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Patterns and Parrots

I've just spent the day walking around and around my "work station in my studio" (translates to bench in the kitchen!) collating patterns - the most boring job I have! Thank heavens for an understanding husband who puts the pages in the packets and seals them for me!
We have had the most marvelous rain! Last night was spent in front of the fire listening to the noise of rain on the roof - one of my favourite sounds. But have a look at the photo I took yesterday of a very wet king parrot - he was watching the galahs eating from the bird feeder. There he stayed, in the rain, in the tree outside our front door for quite a while until his mate arrived and they both flew away.

Another Stitching Hint

I have had several requests for hints about stitching the teddies' eyes - getting the expression just right. Try tracing the facial features onto the cut out fabric pieces before they are fused onto the background material - use a light box or window, something with a source of light behind it. I like to use a fine brown permanent marker such as a Zig Millennium, which is acid free, waterproof and non-bleeding. Water erasable pens will stain the fabric if not properly washed out before ironing. Use a tiny backstitch for the outline, inserting the needle into the hole of the previous stitch - this allows you to create an even curve. Once the outline is done, use satin stitch to fill in the pupils.
I use a small fused-on fabric piece as a template for the noses, and satin stitch over this in a dark brown. This also helps to camouflage any gaps in your stitching. Ironing helps to even out uneven stitches as well.
Hope this helps!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Ernie Dingle

I thought I'd introduce you to Ernie Dingle - a well-travelled little ted! He's a Russ bear born in China, and he moved all the way around the world to live in Ireland. Back in 2002 we found him in a shop in the seaside town of Dingle, in a very beautiful part of County Kerry. The Dingle Peninsular has spectacular scenery and is steeped in history - I could wax lyrical about it, but I think it should be experienced to be believed.
However, we adopted Ernie Dingle and brought him home to Australia where he is leading a very happy existence sitting on a wooden ladder with all his mates!
He will be featured on the cover of one of my new designs, "Teddy Bear Cot Quilt" - in his very own little sleeping bag. I've nearly finished the pattern and will launch it on the unsuspecting public very soon!
So much sewing to do! Bliss!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Sew Busy Bears

Well, here it is! A sneak preview of "Sew Busy Bears". It features two things I love - teddy bears and sewing! I have not finished it yet, but it will be available as a pattern sometime in June.
I had an interesting day yesterday - an appointment with my audiologist. I wear a hearing aid and also suffer from tinnitus. She told me that there were reports (not proven) that red wine can aggravate tinnitus, as does chocolate (also not proven)! She's talking to deaf ears (hmmmm......!). Later I watched the Pilot Guides episode about Britain (We have a love affair with the British Isles) whilst enjoying a glass of red, then a taped episode of Time Team whilst sipping a hot chocolate!!!!!
Give up wine and chocolate? I don't think so! Is there any hope for me?
Back to the sewing machine!
P.S. Did you know that there is a new Cadbury chocolate - Tiramisu. My chocoholic friend, Sue, put me on to it. She has such good taste!!!!! (Or is that TiramiSue?!!)

Saturday, May 3, 2008


Hello to swapna who left a comment on the 24th April - I'll be posting some close-ups of my work soon!
In the meantime, here is another "latest" shot of Bobo!