Archive of ‘Christmas’ category

A Cushion For Christmas Blog Hop


Ms Midge


It’s the 25th of November and in case you needed reminding, Christmas is just around the corner!!!!  Eeeek!  I’m joining the wonderful Ms Midge and a host of other talented bloggers in December for the “A Cushion For Christmas” blog hop.  You may have noticed that I have a thing for cushions (or pillows, depending on where you live in the world.  I’m talking the decorative type, not the ones you sleep on.) and I’m really excited to see what everyone comes up with.

A few of my all time favourite cushions that I’ve made <3

Ms Midge will be kicking off on December 1st followed by little old me on the 2nd.  You can see the full schedule below and Midge has promised to post tips and tutorials during the hop to get you started.  There will also be a linky party and some fun prizes at the end!

I can’t wait to decorate my new house with these pretties! I miss them…

If you’d like to join in, you can find the code for the button at Ms Midge and feel free to add it to your blog sidebar.  If you don’t have a blog you can join in by emailing your finished projects to Ms Midge (details on her blog).  There is also a Flickr group for you to join HERE.


Sunday 1st December – Midge at Ms Midge
Monday 2nd December – Me!!! at Pretty Bobbins
Tuesday 3rd December – Kristy at Quiet Play
Wednesday 4th December – Joshua at Molli Sparkles
Thursday 5th December – Alyce at Blossom Heart Quilts
Friday 6th December – Fiona at Finding Fifth
Saturday 7th December – Abby at Things For Boys
Sunday 8th December – Lauren at Molly & Mama Makes
Monday 9th December – Jodi at Tickle & Hide
Tuesday 10th December – Adrianne at On The Windy Side
Wednesday 11th December – Rachel at Little White Dove
Thursday 12th December – Gina at Party of Eight
Friday 13th December – Jane at Quilt Jane
Saturday 14th December – Round up of Blog Hop and link up YOUR projects at Ms Midge!
A big shout out to the fab sponsors of the hop -


Patterns Only
The Oz Material Girls
Fat Quarter Shop - $50 Voucher!


Polka Dot Tea - Fabric Bundle!


Intrepid Thread - $25 Voucher!
Blossom Heart Quilts - Quilt Patterns!


Quiet Play - Paper Piecing Patterns!
Now I have to get back to my moving lists and then get onto making my cushion.  I’m going to be focussing on fun colours and the Quilt As You Go (QAYG) technique <3

I Quilt Linky Party – growth


i quilt blog button

First up, thank you for all the kind words and support on my post yesterday.  You reminded me once again that when I put myself out there I get it back ten fold.  Thank you xx  Today has been chaotic (I got all ready for my first walk post packing and discovered that my shoes and hat have been packed!) but I will start to respond to comments tomorrow <3

Greek Cross Cushion by Aoife of thREDhead

A big thank you also to everyone who linked up last week!  I finally got around to visiting everyone’s blogs last night :)  I hope everyone linking up is showing some of the love and visiting other linkers, we all love comments and traffic :)  This week I am featuring the talented Aoife, I LOVE her blog name, thREDhead.  Seriously girl, how long did it take you to come up with such a great name?!  I thought about mine forever and I still question it LOL  Make sure you pop by Aoife’s blog, last week she shared her Greek Cross cushion which is absolutely stunning in bold solids with some AWESOME quilting to boot.  Aoife pointed out how dense quilting dramatically shrinks your quilt and she used this as a clever design feature and densely quilted half of her cushion back (photo below).  Aoife, you may have completely inspired my current work in progress ;) Thank you xx

Greek Cross Cushion (back) by Aoife of thREDhead

My post yesterday probably left you thinking that I’m somewhat introspective at the moment.  Yep, it kind of happens when you go through the moving process and touch every item that you own.  Left with an empty house I put up our advent calendar that I made two Christmases ago.  My idea was to make a Christmas tradition/symbol that was portable as we are often in transit during December.  I had very little quilting experience (and confidence!) when I made this wall hanging.  The wadding is synthetic felt, the white fabric is a super high threadcount sheet (NOT fun to quilt through!) and I did all the blanket stitching and binding by hand.  Yep, I have grown a lot since I made this baby!

Quilted Advent Calendar with felt decorations

Growth is good.  I love the quilts I make now (I love my early quilts too).  I’d never use synthetic felt as wadding now (never say never!!) LOL  I rarely mark my quilts anymore and for this quilt I even marked all of those straight lines in chalk.  I didn’t even own a walking foot so I dragged that sucker through my old Husqvarna.  Yep, I don’t do any of those things anymore, but I love this wall hanging and so does my family.  If I hadn’t jumped in and made that wall hanging and lots of other projects, I wouldn’t have ended up where I am now.  Marking quilting lines gave me the confidence to quilt.  Quilting gave me the confidence to not mark lines.  Not marking lines gave me the space to get creative and play.

my current quilt in progress 12″ x 27″

I would love to hear about how you’ve grown as a quilter.  How did you build your confidence?  Do you still have your early projects?  Did you have lessons and learn methods or did you just jump in and give it a go?  As much as I am a perfectionist, I don’t think there is really a right or wrong when it comes to quilting.  Sure, you might not feel every piece is “show worthy” but we learn from each piece we make and that is invaluable.  My Blessings quilt (below) was a major turning point in my quilting journey <3

I have also become a better photographer since then but I gave this quilt away so I can’t photograph it again.  You can see the quilting better from the back (where I learnt that sometimes whole cloth is better) ;)

Blessing Quilt back (I thought a pieced back was fun, but in hindsight it took away from the quilting.)

How is your quilting journey progressing?  I’d love you to link up below.  I ask that you visit at least two other linkers and link to me in your post and/or add my button to your sidebar/post.  You can find the button html code near the top right of my blog or, at the bottom if you’re on a mobile device.  Remember that this linky is all about quilting process, I’d love to hear all about your process!

i quilt blog button

Thanks for linking up xxx



Christmas Table Runner


Before you freak out and think that I’m super prepared for Christmas, please understand that I’m packing up my house in a month and all the sewing is actually just procrastination ;)  Normally my Christmas sewing is done around the 23rd of December!  But here we are in October and I’ve made a Christmas table runner!

Don’t look too closely at the table, it’s somewhat *ahem* worn!

I have been avoiding piecing chevrons as long as I have been admiring them.  I am not particularly fond of HSTs (half square triangles) and even then ‘easy’ patterns that I’ve seen around fill me with some sense of dread ;)  But I spied a cute chevrony Christmas table runner on Pinterest and I decided that I needed to make one.

After some contemplation I remembered how much I loved making my triangle quilt so I dug out my tri recs ruler set and got cutting.  Now quilt maths isn’t my strong point and I thought I cut enough triangles to make a 50″ long table runner.  In fact my table runner is 90″ in length and I have a dozen triangles left over!

My late Grandma knitted the Mr and Mrs Claus <3

I paired some Christmas prints by Kate Spain that I won as part of a blog hop last year with some Essex linen blend.  I cut the triangles to 6″ (finished) and a 3″ (finished) strip down the middle.  I actually just wanted something to quilt but figured some piecing was in order ;)

I went with a holly design (the last time I saw real holly was in primary school, approximately thirty years ago!) leaving out the berries as I didn’t want the quilting to over power the simple piecing and I couldn’t bring myself to quilt green berries ;)  I used a lovely soft green Aurifil thread (2840 in 50 wt) to quilt the holly design.

I don’t often mix blue and green together and I’m notoriously picky when selecting a backing fabric.  I have to use something nice but I don’t want to use something so nice that I will regret not having that print for a quilt top (ah, the dramas of being slightly obsessed with fabric!).  It turned out that I had the PERFECT print on hand.  An old moda print that I kept putting back on the shelf as it wasn’t quite right for any project.

I didn’t have quite enough so I added a section of the Essex linen blend.  I actually love the Essex section and it’s a reminder how much I love whole cloth quilts.

I used the linen blend for the binding as well and as always machine sewed it in place.  I also added simple hanging pockets and the quilting is directional so we might end up using it as a wall hanging.

I didn’t have any hooks high enough to photograph the whole quilt!

In addition to the holly quilting I quilted Christmas trees within the triangles.  I’m still having second thoughts about this as it takes away the abstractness that I loved but the space was big enough that it needed quilting.

I’m linking up with TGIFF over at Quilts Matters this week.  Big thanks to everyone who linked up this week for the i quilt linky party <3  I plan to finish the evening with a glass of wine and some blog reading ;)

Still no cigar


I would so love to be sharing Mr 6′s rainbow quilt today.  I really thought I had a good chance of finishing it this week.  But to be honest, the hand stitching is just a killer.  I am trying to do a little each day so at least there is still progress, albeit slow!  I’ll include a progress pic as I noticed there are quite a few new followers :)  Welcome to any newbies and thanks for reading about my creative adventures *waves*

I Spy Quilt top complete
This photo is a little out of date, I’m up to the final hand embroidery
 and binding but this photo gives you a good idea of why
 I’m so keen to finish this beast and share it with you all :)
I did have two finishes this week though :)
First is the rainbow road quilt I shared earlier this week.  It is a project from the Curves Class that I’m taking.  Each week there are three projects and I actually completed all three projects from last week (this week LOL).  I love how this one turned out.  There were lots of panic moments when I thought it would be pure vomit but I really, really love the final result :)
rainbow road front on grass  rainbow road back on grass
My second finish for the week is another Curves class project.  It felt very strange to be making at Christmas themed mini in January LOL  I actually used some of the Kate Spain fabric that I won recently which was nice, I had thought it would be 11 months before I was using Christmas fabric!

oh christmas tree mini
I kept the quilting to a minimum (Aurifil 40wt 2024 and 50wt 2884) which is rare for me.  I still might go back and do a little quilting over the hills.  I have read that wall hangings need to be heavily quilted to hang flat, so I guess this will be a good test.  Do you like the little snowman I added?  The snowman was stitched with Aurifil 12wt, the blue is a lovely verigated thread (3770).
oh christmas tree close up

I’m glad I decided to make this project in addition to Rainbow Road.  I didn’t get as curvy this time around and I also wasn’t quite as happy but I did learn a lot and have fun :)  I used greys and some white scraps to piece the sky.  I wish I had used paler greys for the sky under the tree.  The trunk kind of gets lost in all that dark grey…

oh christmas tree

I do really like this mini though and it will definitely be used (or gifted) this coming Christmas.  I also discovered that I need to build up my stash of greys (both scraps and yardage).  Any excuse to build the stash, right? ;)

I’m really hoping I’ll have a big finish to share next week :)  I’m struggling a bit with my thyroid condition at the moment (fatigue big time) so it is somewhat frustrating to be doing some slow handsewing rather than zooming away at the machine.  It would be nice to be zooming even if stationary LOL

I’m linking up with TGIFF over at Quokka Quilts this week.



First up I just want to say a very big thank you to everyone who made such lovely comments on my posts this week.  Unfortunately I am really struggling health wise and I just can’t reply individually at the moment.  I am so much better today than I was yesterday, so here is hoping that I will continue to improve.  I am very grateful that Mr Husband is on leave and is able to do everything because at this point I’m unable.

kuto bay

My family just spent a few days on a small tropical island, Isle des Pins.  It was amazing.  Our lovely friends were holidaying there on their boat and we spent a night with them as well as both boys having a sleepover.  Very special indeed.  I am very grateful for good friends and precious children.

Pool where Mr 6 learnt to swim

We were lucky enough to stay at a beautiful resort that had a fantastic pool.  Deep enough for me to stand with the water to my chin so I could help the kids and enjoy swimming myself.  I am so incredibly proud to tell you that Mr 6 learnt to swim yesterday!  I was more than happy to be in the pool as the water was much kinder on my body and Mr Husband took Mr 4 for an adventure with our friends.

in the pool

Mr 6 had spent two days becoming very comfortable with his pool noodle, paddling around the pool.  Without his younger brother (who learnt to swim recently) around he learnt to swim in an hour.  Not just swimming, but diving in, underwater somersaults, swimming down to touch the bottom of the pool with me.  I am so, so happy because on the first day in the pool he would panic if he couldn’t touch an adult.  It was a real eye opener for me that there can be some real benefits in separating the kids and being able to focus one on one.  I think we might try and do a bit more of this over the two month vacation, especially with our need to focus on literacy and numeracy for Mr 6.  I am very grateful to have had this insight at the beginning of the holidays, I think it will stand us in good stead.

relaxing by the pool in the evening

Unfortunately my Dad’s trip to spend Christmas with us was cancelled at the last minute.  He is bitterly disappointed but we’re really hoping that he can make it for Spring Festival (Chinese New Year)  in February.  But I’m very grateful that the kids will still be on holidays in February so we will still be able to have a family holiday together :)

Some other exciting news that I am extremely grateful for is that we have bought a new house!  It wouldn’t be to everyone’s taste but we love it and it is near family and we can’t wait to move in to it at the end of our time in Nouméa.  Mr Husband was careful to measure up the wall in the stairwell as he really want me to make a quilt to hang there.  I’m so grateful that my husband is so supportive of my hobby!

new house new view
The view from our new kitchen window

I am spending a lot of time resting in bed and reading online at the moment.  I’m very grateful for all of the awesome quilting and sewing blogs that I have discovered this year, it certainly makes this trying time much more enjoyable!  There are so many amazingly creative people out there and I am lucky enough and very grateful to have made friends with some of them online this year.

If I don’t manage another post before Christmas, I’d just like to wish you all a Merry Christmas.  Whilst we will be having a very small celebration this year, there are so many special people that I will be thinking of and in particular one little baby boy who should have been celebrating his first Christmas but instead grew Angel wings.

Merry Christmas xxx

hotel grounds

A very special Christmas tree


This gift is now in the mail on the way to some very special recipients.  I’ll just put a spoiler alert here. If you have two fur babies named Roscoe and Lulu then do not read any further! :)

My current and last two quilting projects have featured pebbles.  Whilst I find it to be a very time consuming FMQ technique, I love the outcome.  For this project I pulled out the last (not very last, but there is not enough left for big projects) of the awful sheeting material I bought in Beijing.  I am trialing a range of different adhesive products at the moment so I decided on some raw edged appliqué using a little heat n’ bond.

Christmas tree mini

It was actually a fairly simple project, I traced each child’s hand onto heat and bond, cut it out, stuck it on to the fabric, cut out the fabric, ironed it on and straight stitched around the edges.  Then I got my FMQ on and even wrote the kids names and the year underneath the tree.

christmas mini back
Because I can never resist a good looking back!

I added hanging pockets on the back and used the Red Pepper Quilts method for machine binding.  I only missed one tiny section on a corner which was very satisfying!  I’m thinking these will be a great Christmas gift for all the Grandparents next year and I might even have to do one for us too!

I’m linking up to TGIFF!

Sunday Stash back in full swing!


I’ve had a few weeks break from linking up with Sunday Stash over at Finding Fifth.  Frantic Christmas sewing, along with end of school year festivities have seen me in a perpetual state of chaos. But with the last day of school on Friday a number of deadlines have passed and I am now back to a more reasonable pace of sewing.  I didn’t sew anything yesterday!  It was a nice break but I’m itching to get back to it today ;)

jardin du pere noel
To celebrate the end of the school year on Friday we visited the Jardin du Pere Noel with friends.

Santa is being very generous this year and has sent me a few quilting books, they aren’t wrapped in pretty paper but I am dutifully waiting until the 25th to open them.  We won’t mention that I selected them myself, but I’m rather forgetful so I should still get a surprise LOL

christmas mail

My November stack arrived recently from Pink Castle Fabrics as part of their Stash Stack club.  November was orange and if you ask me, orange is not a favourite colour of mine.  But oh my, this bundle is my favourite yet!  Look at these pretties!!

november stash pink castle

Of course I have a few favourites…

november favourite

november favourite 3

I girl can’t just choose one favourite ;)

november favourite 2

During the Black Friday sales (I think!)  I ordered the Hawaiian Sunset blogger bundle from Pink Castle Fabrics.  I ummed and ahhed, it didn’t really look like me but I was intrigued.  The name attracted me as much as anything (I don’t live in Hawaii but living on a small Pacific island anything kind of Pacific focussed draws my attention) some of these prints are super busy but oh so pretty.  It looked like a pleasing challenge.

hawaiian blogger bundle

They have actually been sitting unopened inside the bag they came in for a few weeks but I decided to include them in today’s Sunday Stash.  I LOVE this bundle.  LOVE it!!!  The photos just don’t do it justice.  I have no idea what I’m going to make with this one, but it will be either for my daughter or me because I love these colours together and they’re not leaving this house :)

hawaiian favourite 2

I will need to supplement this bundle to bring it up to quilt size.  I really enjoyed adding new prints to the last blogger bundle that I worked with to really make it my own.  I think I might do the same this time.  Although there is a great temptation to just buy a second bundle…  Yep, it’s that pretty!!!

hawaiian favourite

I will just add in at this point that Pink Castle fabrics are one of my all time favourite online fabric shops!  I have no affiliation with them whatsoever, I genuinely love their range and customer service.  In the unlikely event that you are unfamiliar with them, pop over and have a look, you won’t be disappointed :)

I’m linking up with Sunday Stash over at Luella Bella this week.

Finding Fifth

An emotional finish


Director's mini finished

Today marks the end of an era.  It is the last day of the school year here and Mr 6 will be moving from Maternelle (pre-school) to CP (Primary School).  Mr 4 will also be leaving our Maternelle and moving to a school with smaller classes.  I am an emotional wreck today.  We started at our Maternelle nearly two years ago, Mr 6 (then 4) walked in on the first day of school, the only kid in the school who didn’t speak a word of French.  We had a tough first year.  Like heart breaking tough.  For months he would cling to the car door crying in the morning when we arrived at school.  It was awful.

Not only could Mr 6 not speak French, he didn’t know anyone’s names because it was all a blur of words and he couldn’t differentiate a name from vocabularly that he was yet to learn.  He didn’t know what was cool and what wasn’t so he couldn’t even try to blend in let alone fit in.  It was tough.  On all of us.

At the end of the first school year Mr 6 was much happier.  He spoke French fluently and had made some firm friends in his class.  This year marked Mr 6′s second year at the school and Mr 4 joined the school in the youngest class, Section des Petites.  We were blessed with an AMAZING Maitresse (teacher) for Mr 6.  She is kind, gentle, patient.  She is obviously passionate about teaching and knows each child in her class and has a meaningful relationship with them.  With this teacher Mr 6 has gone from being OK at school to LOVING school.  Along with the standard curriculum our Maitresse has introduced the children to Yoga and Meditation, the classroom is full of inspiring images, classical artwork, letters, words and numbers.  A boring classroom was transformed into a fantastic learning space.  What a great place to spend five days a week!

school all festive

In addition to a wonderful teacher, the school is lucky enough to have a visionary Director.  He knows all of the children by name and always has a minute to chat to parents.  I feel that he kept an extra eye out for Mr 6 during his difficult first year and I am very, very grateful for that.  Under his direction the teachers worked secretly for four months this year on fantasy displays which were then placed in each of the class windows transforming the school into a magical fairytown for the inagural Christmas Soirée.

Christmas soirée display

I can’t explain how amazed we were, but it was truly magical with all of the children and teachers (and many parents) dressed as traditional fairytale characters.  There were jugglers and performers, storytellers, an enchanted cave, a secret fairy garden, roving singers and lights galore.

Christmas soirée fairy garden

We are very sad to be leaving the school.  It is great that we are moving on, that both Mr 4 and Mr 6 have aquired fluent French, made great friends and had some fantastic teachers.  But saying farewell to the school is very emotional.  So of course, I had to make some very special gifts for the people who made our time at the school so special.

You may remember the iPad pouches I made for Mr 6′s Maitresse

iPad pouch front

and Mr 4′s Maitresse.

iPad pouch inside

This morning I sent Mr 6 to school with a small gift for each child in his class (only two other children will go to the same school as him next year).  The girls all got two hair ties and a clip made using some favourite scraps.

The boys all received a monogrammed key chain using this fun tutorial.  I couldn’t find my pinking shears, so I reduced the stitch length to about 1.2 and just left the edge smooth.  I don’t think they’ll fray too much.  I’m hoping they might use them on their school bags next year and remember their Australian friend.

key fobs monogrammedkey fobs front

Yesterday afternoon I finally had time to get started on the gift for the Director.  Without much time I still wanted to give him something handmade and meaningful (we only decided on Tuesday to move Mr 4 to another school, so I did think I had another year to make a big gift for the Director).  Around 2pm I started a circle of flying geese using this free template.  I had the top pieced almost finished by school pick up, let’s say the kids got to watch a little more TV than usual yesterday afternoon…

Director's mini top pieced

I started to panic as the sun began to drop in the sky.

setting sun
Moment of panic as sun starts to set…

As the sun was setting I was madly hand stitching ”From little things BIG things grow”. It is a line from a Paul Kelly song that any Australian would know and most love.  It is actually a protest song, but I think it is fitting for a Director as our little kids have grown so much under his care.

Director's mini stitch in progress
This is where I was up to when the sun started to set…  eek!

You can listen to Paul Kelly, Kev Carmody and John Butler preform it here and you can read more about the song here  Please enjoy the song for what it is, there are a few contentious comments below the clip on youtube, please ignore them, I’m not trying to get political, this is a song that most Australians love and know, I’m just trying to share the inspiration for my mini quilt :)

I finished up the mini at about 11pm last night.  I LOVE it.  I hope he does too :)  It measures about 15″ square and uses a mix a Essex linen and favourite scraps.  Although I was rather time poor I had great fun with the quilting!  It is machine straight line quilted in Aurifil 50wt 2605 with a little 40wt 2024 (the white machine quilting).  I broke out my new verigated 12wt Aurifil (4660 and 4662) which was a pleasure to hand stitch with.

Director's mini close up stitching

I actually attached the binding the wrong way LOL  It was late and I was desperate to get it finished and get to bed.  I should have sewn it to the front first and then was going to do the Red Pepper Quilts method of machine stitching in the ditch so that it is invisible on the front.  But I needed to keep going and get to bed so I selected a thread that blended into the binding and I neatly machine stitched it in place.  And guess what?  I love the way it looks!  Yippee!

Director's mini finished

I always love to see the back of quilts and the quilting on this mini was a lot of fun, so here you go :)

Director's mini back 2
A heart to hide them names :)  But we basically thanked Mr Director for providing a
wonderful school and community.

I have a few last Christmas gifts to sew that will be quick and then back to Mr 6′s Rainbow I Spy quilt.  Hopefully it will be done in time for Christmas.  I’m thinking I will pebble quilt in the sashing and hand quilt the borders in rainbow threads.  I’m quite excited about it :)

I’m linking up to TGIFF over at Quilt Matters and for the first time with Crazy Mom Quilts.

Christmas Tree Skirt


Are you bored of hearing about my Rainbow I Spy Quilt yet?  It’s been basted for nearly a week but I want the quilting to be just right so I decided to practice my FMQ by whipping up a tree skirt.

tree skirt with lights
All lit up!

It must be some kind of crazy crafter thing.  So many blogs I’ve read lately say something like, “every year I do some last minute Christmas crafting.”.  If you ask me, I will claim that I’m not into Christmas craft.  Evidence begs to differ…  And yes, it’s always last minute!

Advent calendar with all felt decorations

Last year in the first few days of December I “whipped” up an advent calendar.  Not content to put bonbons in the pockets I hand stitched a bunch of felt decorations including baubles with the names of the kids and “Mummy” and “Daddy”.  There was nothing speedy about it but I love that advent calendar and it hangs above our kitchen table really transforming the room.  The white fabric that I used for the advent calendar is a really tight weave sheeting fabric that I bought when I lived in Beijing.  It is so hard to sew with.  Remind me not to use it again!!

Each day the kids put up one decoration (although on the first they put up the three with their names and then waited until the fourth to put up another).

Advent calendar day 4

They know what is in each pocket (I don’t mind the peaking) and when I sneakily put them all up to photograph they always know because I put them up in different pockets LOL

advent calendar favourite ornaments
To give some perspective, no decoration is more than 2″ across.  Just a tad fiddly!

I have a few favourite decorations (most of the designs are based on ones I found on Pinterest, you can find them on my Christmas board) and the star doesn’t go up until the 25th.

Advent calendar star

We all love our advent calendar (even if it did take more time than anticipated LOL).

This weekend I decided I needed to whip up a tree skirt.  If I really wanted to whip it up I could have used felt.  No, I wanted something special.  I loved Kristy’s paper pieced star pattern that I tried as part of my wall hanging for the Sew Seasonal blog hop.  So I decided in a moment of madness to make a paper pieced tree skirt.  Luckily one of my quilting buddies planted the idea of applique saving some time!

tree skirt

I paper pieced 16 stars in a variety of blue prints and solids (our tree has blue and silver decorations).  I then completely failed to get my head around the quilt math of piecing a circle so I gave in and cut a circle from the largest piece of white fabric I had.  Yes, it was that horrid tight, weave sheeting fabric. I knew it was a bad move, but it’s so white, bright white that I thought it would be good for a tree skirt.  I trimmed back the stars to a diamond shape and appliqued them on using zig zag.

Now, normally I see zig zag as a kind of faux pas when it comes to appliqué but it just seemed right for this project.  Unfortunately the sheeting fabric is a right PAIN, my needle came out of the shank 3 times!!!  I changed needle size, I gritted my teeth.  Not much helped, but I got there in the end.  I could literally feel the needle punching holes in this awful fabric.  FRUSTRATION galore!

tree skirt close up fmq

Anyway, once I got that done I knew that quilting would be easier with some wadding applied so I basted my top to some scrap bamboo wadding and got busy practicing FMQ.  It is so hard to see the design, but it is a scroll that kind of spreads out as it goes down.  It’s meant to look like Christmas trees and has the occasional star on the end of the branches.  Then there are lots of stars down the bottom around the appliqued stars.

tree skirt fmq

I love the quilting.  I really, really love it.  It isn’t perfect, but it is gorgeous and I so wish that I had used a light blue rather than white thread so that it stood out more.  But like I said, this was practice and I learnt to be bold in my thread colour because I’m getting good enough at FMQ to let my quilting stand out and not just blend in.

tree skirt adjusted to show fmq
Very poor attempt to alter the contrast to show you the FMQ

I wanted a more traditional alternative for the back. I almost went with gold and blue but end in the end the idea of an alternative won out and we have a much simpler back in red and gold Christmas prints.  I love it.

tree skirt back

This year we will stick with the blue and white side, but I love knowing that this tree skirt will be used even if we change our decorations!

paper pieced tree skirt

I really wanted this to be a quick project.  Which it wasn’t LOL  But to save time (and sanity!!) I quilted the top to the wadding and then sewed on the back right sides together, turned and top stitched.  Although I have seen lots of gorgeous tree skirts around that look great with bias binding, I am really pleased with my simple, crisp finish.

tree skirt all tree no skirt
Surprisingly difficult to photograph a immobile tree in a skirt!

I’m linking up with the Sew Seasonal linky party (again).  And if you ask, I’ll swear that I’m not into Christmas crafting ;P

November Round Up


November Round up
Details and links below

The main thing that jumps out when I think of November is our lovely family holiday back to Australia.  We all had a fabulous time but it did kind of steal sewing time ;)

Aus trip Nov 12 015
Hanging out in the garden
pizza making
Making pizzas!  I LOVE this pizza oven that our friends built!

I took part in two blog hops in November; Sew Seasonal and The Travellin’ Pic Stitch.  Both currently have linky parties so make sure you pop over to Quiet Play or Blossom Heart Quilts and Quokka Quilts.

wall hanging all done
Wall hanging for Sew Seasonal Blog Hop
ilot maitre palettecushion on bed
Travellin’ Pic Stitch Blog Hop

Whilst it’s not a finish, I did complete the top and back of my Mr 6′s Rainbow I Spy quilt.  It is all basted and ready to go :)

Rainbow I Spy basted
Rainbow I Spy Quilt in progress.

I also squeezed in some sewing for the TOTALLY ROCKIN’ school Spectacle (concert).

school skirts
I made wrap around shorts and skirts for Mr 6′s class to wear to the concert.

Being close to the end of the year I also completed some end of year gifts for both the teachers and auxiliary staff at school.

iPad pouch front inside
iPad pouch for Mr 6′s Maitresse
dumpling purses fmq
Dumpling Pouches for the auxiallary staff

I crossed the line a few hours late for my November Bee Block for Wombat Stew, but I’m going to put it in November :)  What’s a few hours between friends? :)

paper pieced sewing machine
Delilah (my Bernina 440QE) as a Paper Pieced block!

Oh, and of course there were a couple of orders :)

custom order pillowcase
Custom order

Gosh, I think I was kind of productive considering I didn’t sew for two weeks of November!

I’m linking up with Fresh Sewing Day at Lily’s Quilts

Lily's Quilts

1 2 Next