Archive of ‘Noumea’ category

South Pacific Dreaming – Blogger’s Quilt Festival – Wall Hanging Entry


Once again I am participating in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival which is very generously organised and hosted by Amy’s Creative Side.  This time I am entering two quilts.  South Pacific Dreaming in the Wall Hanging category and “Celebrate” quilt #1 in the bee category.  If you’re new to Pretty Bobbins, welcome!  I am all about free motion quilting, it’s my passion and I host a weekly linky party on quilting process :)  I’m soon to become a longarm quilter, but for now I work on a Bernina 440QE.  I’m currently based in Nouméa, a French territory in the South Pacific but am about to return to live in Australia.

Set of three quilts


Back in June some very good friends of ours left Nouméa.  They had lived here on their catamaran for many years and are one of the happiest, nicest family’s that I know (can you tell that I miss them?).  They commissioned me to make a set of three wall quilts (above) for their family as a souvenir of their time in Nouméa.  Honestly, the pressure was on.  I don’t know if you know many “boaties” but they tend not to have a huge amount of belongings (because they need to fit them all onto a boat).  These three quilts were to be a key souvenir of their time not only living in Nouméa, but sailing around the world and the South Pacific.  (I’m tearing up writing this LOL).  I spent a lot of time talking to them and they gave me some special photos for inspiration.

They are kite surfers – go girl!!

I made three quilts for them but the one I’d like to enter into the festival is South Pacific Dreaming (also the title of the set).

I used a lot of techniques in this quilt that I have learnt in the last year or so.  The improv curve piecing was based on the class I did with Rachel of Stitched in Color.

The family portrait outline style thingy (very technical!) was self taught and involved merging two photos, tracing, some freezer paper and some free motion quilting.  I’m planning a tutorial at some point but I’m sure you can figure it out yourself :)  I merged two photos, in the original photo the Father and son were sitting in a hammock and I tried to keep the texture of the hammock to give the idea of my friend sitting with his baby on his knee (seriously cute baby!).  The second photo was taken years later and my friend was leaning in perfectly toward her now four year old.  Pairing the two photos to create a family portrait was a lot of fun and I love the outcome.

You can see the family silhouette better from the back.

The detail in the quilting is momentarily lost when you glance at this quilt.  I didn’t want the family portrait to be overly obvious and it took me a few days to work out how to quilt it.  Whilst I’m usually up for all sorts of fancy free motion quilting, this quilt called for lots of straight lines to really give the picture that I was after.  You can see that I went with the beach scene quilting a palm frond in the top corner.

A photo taken on a joint family vacation. See those palm fronds everywhere? :)

The white section is quilted to show the iconic shape of the Catana Catamaran windows.

My friend’s catamaran moored at The Isle of Pines. Can you believe this? Stunning!

To me this quilt really felt like a night scene in the South Pacific but I took the colour palate for all three quilts from the Mahi Mahi fish.  My friends gave me a great photo of a freshly caught (by them) Mahi Mahi and it took my breath away.

Photo courtesy of my friends


Whilst I am only entering the South Pacific Dreaming quilt in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival, it is a set of three and I’d like to briefly share the other two with you because they are deep with meaning.  ”She Travels” was for my girlfriend (the wife/mom of the family) and the pink symbolizes her sailing around the world.  I included some prints with French text to represent the French culture in which we live (and remind them of me – one has a sewing machine!).

For the quilting I followed the path that my friends took from Florida, to the Caribbean onto the Galapagos, Tahiti, The Cook Islands, New Zealand, New Caledonia and Australia (with many stops in between!).  I then echoed this route in ever expanding lines to give the idea of a map of the sea bed or currents.  The three circles come from details of the catamaran and I added the phrase, ”Know your dream, find a route” just above these circles.

The third quilt is called “Elements” as to me it represents the elements of the wind, water and land as well as kiting, a clear passion of my friends.  This quilt excites me.  I really pushed myself by pairing a busy pieced section with an expanse of white which I then quilted in bold colours.  Absolutely no room for error!

I took the shape of the island from the photo below, the lighter blue of the wake behind the board shifting into the darker blue.  The colours represent the turtles that laze about in the seagrass bed and the unsuspecting kiters that have to dodge them.  The flaming C represents the kites that my friends have used during recent years.


I have no idea of winds and waters but I absolutely love these photos of my friends kiting.  I can see how much they love it and I can feel the excitement.  These things zoom and on a good day there are dozens of them weaving around each other.  Pouring over these photos I could almost imagine the wind and I did my best to capture this in my quilting.

My friends now live in Floriada and are sorely missed.  You know the kind of friends that you can pick up with at a moment’s notice?  The ones that you randomly think about and imagine what they might be doing?  We will leave Nouméa in two months and I hope to make something similar as a souvenir for my family.

South Pacific Dreaming (set of three wall quilts)

Usually when I share a quilt I talk about the materials used, these quilts used more than just materials, there were memories and emotions and dreams involved.  It was a privilege and a pleasure to work on these pieces and I miss my friends dearly.  They sent me a photo last week showing me the quilts on the walls of their new home and I want to share their words with you, “…we hung your quilts today and I am feeling so much better. I wanted to get a photo for you with/before the sunset… Anyway, they have very much lifted our spirits – thank you so much again. They have just so much meaning in every stitch and really look amazing in their spots.”


Pieced and Quilted: by me on my Bernina 440Qe

Size: approximately 30″ x 20″ (from memory!)

Thread: Aurifil threads (2000, 1135, 5005, 5006,1128, 2810 in 50 wt and 2024 in 40 wt)

Fabric: Bella solids (the white is snow) and lots of favourite prints from my stash.  If you would like the details of a specific print, please let me know and I’ll try and help you, but I suspect I used around 40 different prints so I’ll skip trying to list them all ;)

Wadding: 100% cotton

South Pacific Dreaming – my entry into the Wall Quilt Category

Thanks for stopping by and I encourage you to participate in the Blogger’s Quilt Festival by either visiting and/or entering the festival.  This is my third time entering and it’s a great quilty and bloggy event.  Thanks for all your work Amy!

Vive le Stash


Today I’m hosting Sunday Stash for the lovely Fiona of Finding Fifth.  Fiona mentioned to me that she was thinking of doing an American related stash post to celebrate the 4th of July earlier in the week.  I hope you don’t mind Fiona, but I’m totally stealing your idea ;)

RWB prints
Rouge, Blanc, Bleu or Red, White and Blue :)

As some of you will know I live in Nouméa, Nouvelle Caledonie (New Caledonia), a special territory of France.  My children were 4, 2 and a few months old when we arrived in Nouméa and two and a half years later they all identify strongly with France.  I’m often asked questions such as, “Can we go to the Mountains in Suiss?” and “Is the Sydney bridge as big as la tour Eiffel?”  In fact my eldest is often heard chanting “rouge, blanc, bleu!” whilst his brother will argue that Canberra is not in Australia…

Bastille Day march 2011
Evening street march as part of National Day celebrations in Nouméa, 2011

So today I am going to share some of my recent rouge, blanc et bleu stash additions to celebrate both the 4th of July et La Fête Nationale which is on the 14th of July.

rouge stash

Recently I received my Red Stash Stack bundle from Pink Castle Fabrics.  I seriously love that store and their monthly fat quarters never fail to disappoint (no sponsorship deal folks, just good old fashioned loyalty based on great products and service).  As always there are a couple of favourites that jump out at me.

rouge sketch
I love this Architextures in red (I also have it in black and grey)

Blue makes up the largest part of my stash, not surprising really as blue has been my favourite colour as long as I can remember.  Here are some of my favourite blues.

bleu favourites
L-R: Lou Lou Thi, Little Folks (voile), Good Folks, No idea but I love it, Hope Chest, Kona Lagoon, I think it’s Japanese

The solid is Kona Lagoon and I have used it again and again and everytime I use it I think of the Foona Lagoona Baboona, yes I grew up with that great American Dr Suess and “The Sleep Book” was a favourite.

Spiderman rouge Spiderman bleu

My sons LOVE Spiderman, another famous American, and I recently stocked up on some Spiderman prints.  These are one of the most important parts of my stash, I have made a pillow or cushion case for almost every little boy we know as a birthday gift.  Always a winner and as popular in France as elsewhere.

superhero squad

Whilst I am completely unfamiliar with Captain America and his fellow superheros this print is another firm favourite and one I restocked this one recently, more birthday presents coming up (one this week in fact!).

bonjour blanc

Another recent arrival in two colourways is this fantastique Kauffman print.  How cool is this?  I have no idea what I’m going to make with it, but I knew I had to have it :)

bonjour noir

Whilst I could never have enough fabric I recently purchased two notions that you need!  First up is a clover unpicker.  This thing is sharp and makes unripping much faster and easier.  If you’re considering a new seam ripper I’d recommended you give this one a whirl, I bought it here.


The second notion which I mentioned on Friday (and yes, I did survive the sleepover, the last child standing was the 4 year old who finally fell asleep at 11.30pm) is my new Machinger gloves.

machinger gloves

AWESOME.  These are SO much better than my last quilting gloves which were so much better than nothing.  Seriously, they fit well, they breath, they grip the fabric.  The make the job of quilting easier and more pleasant and that is a BIG WIN in my book.  If you don’t have quilting gloves or you’re not happy with the ones you have, try these, they really are the bees knees of quilting gloves!

Last week the most popular linked up post was by Em at Sewing by Moonlight which is no surprise considering her beautiful new Liberty of London prints!  Have fun playing with your new prints Em, I have some Liberty scraps that I’m hoarding but have really enjoyed using the few times that I have :)

Now it’s your turn to share your stash.  I’d love to see some of your most recent additions, some favourites that you can’t bear to cut into or if you’re feeling full of national pride feel free to join the party and share some national colour themed prints :)  Thanks for stopping by xx

A Summer Holiday


It’s been rather quiet around here the past week.  It’s four days since I sewed but I have been swimming at the beach the last three days in a row.   My Dad is here (all the way from Hong Kong!) for a week, it’s 18 months since we last saw him and we’re totally focused on Poppy time.

l'ile aux canard marine reserve
Great snorkeling at l’ile aux canard.  We even saw two turtles on the way over!
The first few days Mr 6 woke at 6am asking if he could wake up Poppy.  Cute.  Well kind of, also somewhat annoying to be woken at 6am when I could have been sleeping in.  The kids are all over Dad and he is loving it.  I have pointed out to him that he certainly wasn’t this cool when I was a kid, but I guess that happens ;)

Watching Mulan after a big day of swimming and snorkeling at the beach
(sorry for the dodgy iPad pic)

Dad is a teacher, one of those teachers that live for the job.  He is incredibly passionate about educating children and I’ve asked him to spend some time with Mr 6 encouraging his literacy.  It’s a joy to see and I only wish he could spend more time with us.
But back to sewing.  Not much No sewing has occurred over the past few days, but I do have a few new things to share.
I made this orange peel block as part of the Curves Class.  I don’t know what to do with it, Dad likes it so I might try and find the time to whip it into something for him before he leaves.  I’m frustrated that the points aren’t perfect in the middle and next time I will pick a smaller print for the “windows” as the charm of this gorgeous print is lost.  I do love the block though.  It was time consuming but worth it.

orange peel block
I finished my February bee block for QCA Bee 1 (we need a better name LOL).  Fiona will use our blocks to make a gender neutral Polaroid quilt to be donated to a 9-12 year old child who went through the recent Tasmanian bushfires.

polaroid block
I also completed a little pattern testing for Kristy.  Her patterns are always easy to put together and look great.  This one is no exception, there are however some fiddly pieces (these blocks are 5″ finished) and I could not make an entire quilt from these blocks.  Happiness is about as far as I could get.  This will be sent to Kristy to put together into another charity quilt for the victims of the Tasmanian Bushfires.

happiness paper pieced
The last bloggy thing I managed before Dad arrived was playing with a new App called SimpleBooklet. I want to play around with it a bit more before I go into the details, but I think it will be great for crafty/quilty/sewing bloggers.  If you look up in the top of the right hand side bar you will see a Photo slider that I put together in about ten minutes (pasted below for the benefit of those reading in a reader).  It doesn’t have many photos in it yet, I just wanted to have a play, but I’m really pleased with it.
Now I better get back to it.  Dad is up and we need to go and buy Mr 6 some flippers today to capitalise on all the snorkeling he has been doing.  I feel like I’m on a summer holiday!

l'ile aux canard
Living on a small tropical island means everything gets shipped in.  The view is only spoilt momentarily.

Curves class; the hues of the Pacific


rainbow road front

I love this wall hanging, but it has been really hard to photograph, I hope you can get a sense of it…  I completed this as a project in the Curves Class I’m taking with Stitched in Color.  I’m loving the projects but I’m feeling a little lonesome.  Is anybody else out there sewing along?  If you are and you feel like chatting, I’m keen :)  It’s always more fun to have sewing buddies :)

rainbow road front on grass   rainbow road back on grass

I used some scraps from the piecing for the back.  I LOVE the back and am so pleased I didn’t just go with some yucky old fabric that would forever remain hidden.

rainbow road back

I’m loving the course but I did find that this project took a lot longer than the description stated.  I don’t mind though the end result was worth it :)  This project involved a few firsts for me.  First time improv curves, first time organic straight line quilting, first finish for 2013, first time using that mustardy yellow colour and being happy.  I just can’t decide which side to display…

rainbow road in situ
I am constantly inspired by the bright colours of the Pacific

Usually I photograph my quilts in the shade, so nice bright light, but not directly on the quilt.  This baby needed the glare of Nouméa mid morning sun to shine.  On the weekend I was talking to Mr Husband about how I am inspired by the colours of Nouméa, I really don’t think I would be making such bold fabric choices in a grey, traditional setting.  If you’re interested in seeing more of Nouméa’s colour, check out this post.  But to give you an idea here is a house in our neighbourhood.

Anse Vata, yellow shack

Would you like some close ups?

rainbow road detail 3

rainbow road detail 2

rainbow road detail 1

And of the back:

rainbow road back piecing close up

rainbow road detail 4

Not that this baby will be rolled up often, but it does make a good photo ;)

rainbow road rolled

Size: 15″ x 53″.
Cloth: a mix of organic quilting cottons, essex linen and quilting cottons (back Bella bleached white with scraps).  I found my Pink Castle Stash Stack club a fantastic source for this quilt (and no, I’m not paid to say that, I just love it!).
Thread: Only the best ;) Aurifil 50wt 2000, 2692and 2810
Batting: light weight cotton (it was a scrap piece so not sure what brand)
Binding: Moda Bella black.  I love how it frames the quilt

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.

Gah! No really, argh!


Anyone else experiencing the full blown panic that seems to accompany Christmas?  If I wasn’t completely ashamed of the HUGE MESS that is my sewing room I would share a pic as it really reflects my sewing stress (good stress, not bad).  It really looks like a bunch of monkeys have run to the fabric shelves and randomly pulled out fabric and thrown it all around, stuffed that in to bags, tried to hide it, then started throwing fabric around again.  I’m telling myself (and anyone who will listen) that I’ll tidy in January.  Gosh I hope so or I might get lost in here!

This week I’m finishing off a few WiPs:

A dress (requires button to be made and stitched on):

toddler dress

A cushion cover (Alien needs an pupil and mouth):

Alien cushion cover
A little reverse applique and raw edged applique.  Usually I quilt cushion covers but didn’t this time. I think he is cute :)

A Christmas mini quilt (can’t share as it’s a gift for someone who reads my blog).  It’s super awesome and totally Christmas and I’m thinking I’ll do a tutorial on it as I love it so much :)

A gift for the Director of our school.  Fabric has been selected, PP pattern printed.  Um, work has yet to begin and school finishes in two days…  Gah!!!!

Gifts for Mr 6′s classmates.  Half are done.  No idea what to make the boys (the girls are getting hairclips or ties).  Any suggestions?  I need something quick, simple and suitable for 13 six year old boys.  Like super quick.  Key rings?  Argh!

I did have two finishes today.  If I didn’t have enough on my plate today with an early finish for school, followed by swimming lessons, followed by a birthday party and Mr Husband working super late, I decided that even though I had struck it off the list as it was INSANE, I needed to provide handmade gifts for the birthday boy and girl.  So with less than an hour I made two zippered pouches.  I didn’t even use batting or interfacing.

zippered pouches
About 10″ x 6″ using a 9″ zip

These two pouches (complete with the initial of each child) were gifted along with a bought present (a Hello Kitty makeup set and a Playmobil Pirate set).  And you know what???  The birthday girl was carrying around her pouch for the whole afternoon.  How proud am I?

girls zippered pouch
For a Miss Z

Yep, being a little sewing crazy is so worth it when you make a 6 year old happy :)  Funnily enough I only bought a 25cm cut of Happy Hills to see what all the fuss was about and I really didn’t love it.  Turns out six year old girls think it’s pretty ACE :)

back of spiderman zippered pouch
The back of the Spiderman pouch for a Mr V

On completely different news…  I’m thinking of shutting down my other blog, Suburban Adventures in Nouméa.  I just drafted a post letting readers know but I’m going to sleep on it.  Whilst I’m much, much happier in Nouméa than I was a few months back, my heart just isn’t in that blog.  It was pretty much beaten up and left for dead with a few punches for good measure.  Yeah, you can see why I’m not so keen on being all chipper about life here.  My point being (there is a point!), would you guys mind if I shared some more of my life here?  At present I keep this blog pretty strictly to sewing and quilting.  But what I’m thinking is posts here and there about my life beyond sewing.  Like the awesome school concert we had that the local Kanak, Polynesian and Melanesian auxiliary staff taught the kids dances and decorated the school in palm fronds and local flowers.  Would that fit with your blog reading interests or would you just run screaming from another Crafty/Mummy blogger?  I’d love to hear your thoughts :)

school decorations Nouméa styleschool decorations Nouméa
Would you like to see more of this part of my life?

I’m linking up to Work in Progress Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Triangle quilt in progress (I need a better name for it! Any suggestions?)


I can’t believe it is Wednesday already.  How did that happen?

one third quilted
I feel the need to explain it is folded and on the ironing board.  Weird
perspective happening here…

I’m still working on my triangle quilt, I’m loving it but it is time consuming…  I love the pace of making quilts, but sometimes I wish I could speed it up a bit.  I’m about half way through the quilting now but I find quilting to be very hard on my neck, back and shoulders so I’m having to take lots of breaks.  Usually I find going for an hours walk three times a week is enough to keep the sewing aches away.  Today I mixed it up a bit and we went to the beach :)

a quilt ate my machine
Gah!  A quilt ate my sewing machine!

School finishes early here on Wednesdays, so I picked the kids up at 10.30 and we went to a local beach where we met a friend and his Mum for a picnic and swim.  I don’t think I actually swam, but it was a lot of fun.  Sand castles, pool noodles, a long lazy lunch.  I lathered everyone up with sunscreen and got halfway through myself and then forgot.  I remembered half an hour later but the damage had been done and I have red shoulders and back.  Not blister burnt, but not ideal.

This photo had a cool navy ship in it and then I thought,
“hm, in Australia they warn you not to take photos of things
 like this lest you end up arrested in a foreign country.”  So
in order to preserve my freedom you get a boring photo LOL

It was a nice way to break up my quilting.  My sewing machine sits in a horn sewing cabinet.  Whilst it is possible to lower the table slightly so that you get a kind of extension table, it has never really worked for me.  I decided to try it again today and it seems to be going well so far.  I still need to work on the ergonomics of it, but there is more table to take the weight of the quilt, so that’s a good thing!

machine lowered
Machine slightly lowered and using the cabinet top as an extension table.

I also managed to still attach my knee lifter which I can’t sew without (you push your knee against it to lift the foot).

cabinet front view
Front view, I can still easily use the knee lifter (on the right).

I’d love to hear your tips for ergonomic sewing.  Is it possible to sew for long stretches and not end up in pain?  Or at least keep it manageable?  As I was quilting this afternoon I was pondering whether I can bare to part with this one (I started it with the intention of selling it) and I did kind of think that the amount of pain caused by sewing kind of means that I shouldn’t be thinking of sewing to sell.  But then my neck problems are the result of working in an office and I don’t get anywhere near the satisfaction from office work that I do from sewing.  Maybe I need to find a new hobby and a new job LOL  Or maybe I just need to practice both in moderation ;)

quilting in progress
So pretty I might have to keep it for me Little Miss…
I’m linking up with Work In Progress Wednesday at Freshly Pieced.
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My sewing shop


If you follow me over at Suburban Adventures, you may have seen the first of a series of Streetscape posts that I put up today.  Whilst I try to steer away from cross promoting myself ;) I wanted to share this photo of my sewing shop.  It is located on the edge of the Quartier Latin in Noumea.  The lady who runs it is lovely, very friendly and full of character.  The floorboards are well worn and groan as she moves about the shop to help you find your sewing needs of the day.  Whilst there is a larger haberdashery shop just up the road, I love this little building and it’s keeper.  I’ve found some great sewing items that look like they’ve been on display for 25 years and it makes my day every time I visit.