Sunday, January 30, 2011

leading photo on blog

Karen- I've been meaning to say that I really like the leading photo that you chose/made for this blog - very creative, colourful and so 'us'!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Quilt blocks for flood victims

I came accross Jan's blog this week, she makes Oz Comfort Quilts for people who need them. For the people who lost their homes in the Victorian bushfires a couple of years ago and now for the flood victims as well as other groups. She asks for people to make blocks which they send to her then she puts them together and arranges distribution with people in the disaster area so they go directly to individuals, not to a warehouse.
She make hundreds of quilts, which would drive me crazy, but I've managed to make 12 blocks, 10 1/2" square, using the instructions on her blog. They were quite quick to do and used up some fabric scraps, some of which are left overs from years ago, sewing for my children when they were little. Below: my blocks arranged on the floor.

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Saturday, January 15, 2011

New quilt book

This is one of the books I received for Christmas with the beginnings of a project (potholders) from it. It's by Malka Dubrawsky. I like her fresh, colourful approach to quilting.

I received these back in the mail this week - they were done at the beginning of last year for Dale's (the thread studio) Textile Tantrum challenge. They are 20 x 30cms - 'Garden Tantrum' on the left and the other is titled 'Shattered' They've been travelling and in various exhibitions around Australia & the world.
She is having another challenge this year called Pick a Pocket which some ASG members might be interested in entering, - see the side bar of her website for details.

To see what else I've been doing, visit my blog - comments are welcome.
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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Silk chiffon!

Just finished a dress in ming blue embroidered silk chiffon. OMG - what a  challenge. This is the first time I have used this fabric. This garment is definitely NOT for show and tell. So to add to my challenge, I am now making a top out of the same fabric - hopefully to put all my 'learning opportunities' into practice and come up with a much better result. We'll see....

BTW, I did also make an under shift in matching jersey - for the sake of modesty!

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

January Meeting

January's meeting on Sunday was a jam-packed afternoon of learning, sharing and laughter that could have gone on until late into the evening ... but we had to bring it to an end just after 3.30pm.

Some tips for Internet shopping:
  • Research your websites and look for testimonials or endorsements from other trusted sites or bloggers.
  • Request swatches if the online store is able to provide them.
  • Dip your 'toe in the water' if you are unsure and make your first order small.
  • Always do a copy and paste of the onscreen picture of the fabric you buy. It's possible that when your package arrives, the online store may have sold out of stock and it's difficult to remember what you ordered. It's nice to check the real thing against the virtual image. is a must-go-to website for all sewers. It is the largest online sewing community in the world. It enables you to look for reviews of patterns you are thinking of sewing to see how they worked out for 'REAL' women. As well, there is absolutely HEAPS of other information there. By browsing, you can find reviews of sewing machines, overlockers, books, stores, etc as well as searching for tips about everything to do with sewing. If you go searching on the message boards, there is also a community thread for sewers from Australia and New Zealand that has some rather interesting discussion points from time to time. It's free to join but you can also pay to become a 'Friend of PR' that will provide some additional benefits. Being a member without paying a joining fee is good value and well worthwhile. Highly recommended.

I think we are almost all geared up to blog. Some things to remember:
  • Look for the 'New Post' symbol, click on to bring up a template and just start typing.
  • Look for the ABC tick symbol to do a spell check. After checking the spelling, click on the green 'done spellchecking' message that appears in the beige menu bar above your message.
  • Click on the blue 'Preview' message in the top right hand corner of your message to have a look at how your message will appear on screen. Sometimes that gives you an indication that you could improve things by adding in extra lines or making fonts bigger or a different colour.
  • To add pictures, click on the image which is to the right of the ABC tick symbol in the menu bar. That enables you to search for photos from your own computer and add them to your blog entry. Sometimes adding photos upsets your typing but play around with moving pictures and words.
  • There are only a few options available to you on the menu bar. From left to right they are: font; size of font; bold; italic; font colour; links; left justified; centre; right justified; left and right justified; numbering; bullets; block quotes; spell check; add images; add videos; and remove formatting.
  • When you have finished your post, click on the orange 'Publish Post' button in the bottom left hand corner. A new page will appear saying that your post has been published and asking if your want to view the blog. Always click on that message and sit back and admire your fine work!

Here is a picture of Maureen's skirt that she combined by using a Kwik Sew skirt pattern and adding flounces to it by using the flounce pattern pieces from a Burda pattern.

We were very privileged to have Maggie Thatcher, the WA State Liaison Officer of the Australian Sewing Guild, attend our meeting. Maggie joined in our 'show and tell' session by showing us a range of garments she has been sewing for her new grand child. In addition, she showed us a most jaw-droppingly gorgeous quilt that she has just finished that included some fantastic 3-D applique. This is likely to take pride of place in Maggie's home as a wall hanging.

Monday, January 10, 2011

Karen, your presentation was inspiring. You have given us another level to add to our sewing interest, and made it so "doable". Thank you.

Maxi Dress

The Maxi dress pattern for those that need a little challenge (and a new frock).

happy sewing

Monday, January 3, 2011

Meeting Schedule for 2011

Sunday 9 January
What the Internet can add to our sewing; and the personal challenge

Organisers: Jean and Karen
Tutor: Karen

  • The Internet will be set up to demonstrate to us - our blog, interesting sites and MORE!
  • Each person to commit to a personal challenge that they will tackle in the first half of this year
  • Be prepared to share your idea with the rest of us
  • Elizabeth to bring 'reflections' sheets for us to record our journey on creating our challenge

Sunday 13 February
Creating a pattern from a ready-made garment

Organiser: Maureen
Tutor: Ingrid
  • Use of Maureen's jacket to demonstrate techniques

Sunday 13 March
Tailoring Techniques

Organiser: Genevieve
Tutor: Kay Platts

  • Hands-on session
  • Bound buttonholes, welt pockets, tricky jacket corner
  • All day session, 9.30am to 3.30pm
  • Bring along your machine
  • You will also be advised as to what else you need to bring along and have prepared for the day

Sunday 10 April
Garment Deconstruction/Reconstruction

Organiser: Sandi
Tutor: Karen and others

  • Get inspired to turn old into new

Sunday 15 May (third Sunday: Please not that this is the week AFTER Mothers' Day)
Knits - finishes and coverstitch

Organiser: Stella
Tutors: Sandi and Karen

  • Finishes by Sandi - edge finishes, neck, arm ...
  • Coverstitch machine by Karen

Sunday 12 June
Brilliant colour on synthetic fabrics

Organiser: Maureen
Tutor: Linda

  • All day session, 9.30am to 3.30pm
  • You will also be advised as to what else you need to bring along and have prepared for the day

Sunday 10 July
Knits - embellishing

Organiser: Elizabeth
Tutor: Maureen
  • How to embellish knits for great results
  • Getting ideas that challenge you

Sunday 14 August
Parade of your now completed 'challenge'

Organiser: Karen
Tutor: All

11 to 17 September: ASG Convention in Launceston

Sunday 11 September
Adding the 'wow' factor to your garments

Organiser: Anne
Tutor: Elizabeth Morley

  • Hands-on session
  • Textile artistry for your garments
  • Challenging and extending your creativity
  • All day session, 9.30am to 3.30pm
  • Bring along your machine
  • You will also be advised as to what else you need to bring along and have prepared for the day

(A couple of pieces from Elizabeth's newest workshop, which she will be working through with us, are shown below.)

Sunday 9 October
Advanced techniques

Organiser: Genevieve
Tutor: Elizabeth
  • Design continuity across seamlines with different grains
  • Tips for sewing with fine fabrics

Sunday 13 November
Sewing for charity

Organiser: Karen
Tutor: All

  • Hands-on extended session
  • 12 noon to 3.30pm
  • You will also be advised as to what else you need to bring along and have prepared for the day

Sunday 11 December
Planning session and end of year celebrations

Organiser: Jean
Tutor: All
  • The plan for 2012
  • Celebrations - afternoon tea at the Waterwheel Cafe and Tea Gardens, Lot 2 South Western Highway, Armadale, Tel: 9497 3391

Responsibilities of the designated organisers for each meeting:

  • Commence and finish meetings on time
  • Liaise with the coordinator, Karen Anderson, re time available to the tutor(s)
  • Contact the tutor(s) for your meeting a month before the meeting
  • Let each tutor know how much time they have been allotted
  • Determine the requirements for the workshop/demonstration
  • Send Karen an email detailing what each member needs to bring along to the meeting
  • Karen to include this information in the email to all members prior to the meeting
  • Facilitate the meeting so that all tutors have their allotted time - so we can maximise our learning

Responsibilities of the designated tutors for each meeting:

  • Find our from the organiser how much time you have for your session
  • Let the organiser know what each member needs to bring along to your session

Responsibilities of all members:

  • If you are bringing your own sewing machine, arrive at 12.45pm so you can set up your machine
  • Let Karen know if you are unable to participate in a meeting

Responsibilities of our chief convenor:

  • Bookings for room to be made
  • The larger room to be booked for the all day sessions


Sunday, January 2, 2011

Great Work Genevieve

I'm having trouble at the moment adding comments so will post instead. Genevieve, your latest creation is fabulous! Great style and gorgeous fabric.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Why Make One When You Can Make Six?

I have a lovely outdoor setting on my back patio that gets quite a bit of use, especially over summer. However, the cushions take an enormous amount of effort to keep clean. Here is the setting shown below.

I thought that removable and washable covers would be a good solution, however my original plan was far too involved. In chatting with one of the ladies at my local Textile Traders, I discovered that she had a similar plan for her own outdoor setting but much simpler than mine. I ended up sewing some simple envelope-style covers with ties at the sides. By pulling the ties, the fabric sits snugly between the seat and the back rest. Easy to sew, easy to put on and easy to remove for washing. Whipping up these six covers only took three evenings after work and I am thrilled with the results.

The fabric is a sturdy cotton Mexican print from Spotlight. The colour of the fabric has also brightened up the entire back area.

It might be time to do some outdoor entertaining!