Tuesday, September 18, 2018

Lost Momentum.

 It's been a struggle to get my quilting momentum back after we were all so sick. I did finish quilting these 2 tops for my quilting group's Gift Quilt program but haven't gotten back into my previous speedy production. The first quilt was a jelly roll quilt top which was quite plain so I hand appliqued 3 orphan hexagon blocks to make it more modern.
 I'm also getting swamped with scraps of batting and fabric strips after so many quilt finishes so I think I need to make some QAYG blocks and get my sewing room tidied up and hopefully I will regain my momentum for more quilt finishes.
 Little Jake loves one of his birthday gifts of a retro rocker in the shape of a swan. He also spends lots of time pushing his toy train around and he can almost walk on his own.
We're off to Fraser Island for 2 weeks, at the end of the week,  and Jake and his parents are coming with us.  It will be lovely to enjoy some relaxing time in the sun and I plan on taking a break from quilting and come back refreshed. I always take my yarn and crochet blanket squares while we are away so I should be able to get another blanket finished to donate. The second shipment of beanies and blankets are on their way to New Guinea too and that was only possible thanks to the generous support of my blog readers.
  Jake is taking up more of my time now so there is less time and energy for quilting but he is such a delight that we are living being his grandparents.
Hugs, Jan Mac 

Monday, September 3, 2018

6th UFO Finish for 2018.

 After such a productive 2 weeks of quilting there was a real slump as time was limited and we were all sick with the Rotavirus, AKA the stomach flu. I did manage to finally finish my 6th UFO for the year.
  This quilt was completely hand stitched and started as a way to use some of the many 2.5 inch squares I swapped with international quilters as a Millennium swap.  So as you can see this UFO was started in 2000 so it's great to have it finally finished, although it was a very handy project when I wanted some hand sewing. I hand appliqued the stars to the borders but I did machine quilt it. I actually finished it a couple of weeks ago but the binding waited for a bit as other quilting had priority. 
   This quilt will also be donated to Peter Mac and will hopefully be loved. More to come as I get back into the swing of my routines after illness.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Wednesday, August 22, 2018

That Was The Week.

 Last week was also productive with all of these tops being quilted.  They have all been made by members of the Australian Quilters Association, to be donated to various community groups we support.
 This postage stamp top was too big so I reduced the size and have enough left over to make a smaller quilt by adding borders.

 I also added borders to the Basket quilt to make it a more suitable size for an adult.

Most of my days are spent with this little man so I rely on every 10 minutes I can spare. I have a good set up on the back deck which makes it easier to pin baste tops and prepare them for quilting. Having tops already pinned means that I make time to quilt when Jake takes his nap.
Hugs, Jan Mac 

Sunday, August 19, 2018

Many Thanks Margo and Sue.

 Margo B. from Tasmania sent these 24 lovely crocheted squares for a blanket for New Guinea and it was very easy to finish them off as a blanket to donate. It will keep someone warm in the cooler highland area and be very welcome.
 The organization who are distributing the warm items in the New Guinea highlands were also asking for more beanies as they are easy to deliver to them and loved by the locals.  I have almost finished one, being busy with other things, so I was thrilled to hear  from Sue V. of Victoria,  asking if she could donate 30. What a blessing it is to have blog readers who support these projects and I am thrilled to know that, thanks to Sue, there will be a good number of beanies to send in September/October.

My grateful thanks to Margo and Sue for makjng and donating so many lovely items to keep others warm.
Hugs, Jan Mac 

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

A Busy Week.

 August is a very busy month for the family with 2 birthdays and a wedding anniversary to celebrate as well as battling winter colds. However, I had a very productive week with all of these quilt tops finished for AQA. I try to quilt 8 a month for them as well as my Oz Comfort Quilts but by just doing AQA tops I finished 7 in a week as well as one of mine.

 I also delivered another 20 of Oz Comfort Quilts to Peter Mac so it's been very busy but also very productive.  Finally a rare photo of a sleeping grandson. He is almost one and is an absolute delight with lots of Nan Nan and Pa Pa said all day. Unfortunately he has a cold and sore throat but continues to be is almost usual happy self.
I have also reinvigorated my love of dressmaking and I am having fun making more garments to wear. We are off to Queensland for 2 weeks in September, with our little grandson and his parents, so some new clothes will be fun to wear in the sun.
Hugs, Jan Mac 

Monday, August 6, 2018

Thank you Margo and Sue.

 I received a lovely parcel of 24 crocheted squares made by Margo B. from Tasmania and they came at the right time as I am trying to get more quilts, beanies and blankets finished for New Guinea.  Thanks to Margo's donation, I will gave at least one blanket to send. Time is short to get more finished as the next shipment is in about 4 weeks time. I won't stress over it though as we are already busy with our other quilt projects.
   This lovely Cat quilt was one of the tops donated by Sue McP and will be a lovely quilt for a child in foster care.  Sue sent many blocks as well so I need to get busy and put them together into more quilts.
 The last photo shows my progress on my 18year old UFO. I have appliqued the star top to its borders and have now pin basted it. Hopefully I will get some time to quilt it this week and get another UFO off my list.
Many thanks for all of your help dear friends.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Thursday, August 2, 2018

Four More.

 I quilted these 4 tops for my quilting group's Gift Quilt program and I gave a pretty good set up here now so I  can pin baste them ready for quilting.  I try to use even 15 to 20 minutes of spare time, usually while Jake is asleep, and I seem to get more quilts finished if I have them pinned and ready to quilt. Even 10 minutes will be enough time to get some more machine quilting done.
      I'm also trying to finish off more of the group's older tops so we can create more cupboard space and bring some comfort to those needing a warm hug.

I'm also trying to finish off my 6th UFO for the year and almost have the top ready for quilting. I  have appliqued the borders to the star top and now I am hand stitching mitred corners for the borders. Hopefully I can make good progress this weekend.
 I hope you're all enjoying some time to create.
Hugs, Jan Mac 

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Bless The Orphans.

Having a supply of orphan blocks has made it so much easier to get more quilt tops made and quilts finished. Peter Mac Cancer Centre had requested "superhero" quilts for children who are undergoing treatment,  so it has been wonderful to have blocks to add to the superhero fabric and get some finished easily.
   I had bought the fabric but didn't get time to make the quilts so I  really  appreciated the lovely superhero quilts made and donated by Maria W.  of Western Australia.  Now I have finally made another 2 and should have another 20 quilts to drop off to Peter Mac very soon.
Many thanks to my lovely supporters who donated orphan blocks, QAYG blocks, tops and quilts so that more people in need will get a warm hug of comfort.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

5th UFO Finish For The Year.

 I'm really happy to have finished another long term UFO, which makes it my 5th finish of my UFOs for the year. I didn't really expect to get this one finished so quickly but I do work quickly and once I finished the hand applique,  I only gad to nake 1r blocks to suit it.
 This centre block was started about 15 years ago in a class and I didn't really like the rest of the design for the pattern, so I  never got around to finishing it. I had lost the pattern so I used a light box to trace the design onto the opposite fabric and then used back basting to stitch the applique pieces in place. It only took me a couple of evenings to finish stitching the applique, so it shouldn't have been a UFO for this long.
 I back basted the pieces to hand applique and finding similar tones of fabric took as long as stitching them.
 Once the applique was finished,  I made 14 blocks in shades of cream and pink and framed up the applique block to fit.

The wind was blowing a gale but I grabbed a quick photo and this one will be donated to Petef Mac as well. It's so lovely to have another UFO out of the cupboard,  and even better to be able to donate it to a worthy cause.
   I have another long term UFO almost ready for quilting too so I am very pleased with my progress. Even better, I am making more room in my cupboards.
Hugs, Jan Mac 

Friday, July 20, 2018

Arrival of Treasure Troves.

 My stash has received a lovely infusion of new UFOs with the arrival of 2 large boxes of goodies to finish and donate. Sue Mc from Vic sent a fabulous large parcel of lots of bits and pieces to be finished and donated. The first photo shows these lovely embroidered blocks which are ready to be made into a quilt and will be cherished by a little girl.
 This lovely cat top just needs to be quilted and will make a lovely cot quilt for Anglicare.
 These beautiful cross stitched blocks have been beautifully stitched and the theme is cars, planes, tractors, etc so it will be lovely for a little boy.
 There are 3 lovely crazy blocks to add to some of mine for donation.
 Some lovely QAYG blocks which will join the current blocks I have on hand and make more lovely quilts.
 A lovely Christmas panel of the nativity scene which I will probably cut up and combine with light coloured fabric, so it will be appropriate for all the year.
 Some fabric and lovely heart embroidered blocks were also included as well as some QAYG hexagons which will also be used in quilts for kids. Such a lot was stuffed into the parcel Sue, and I plan to get some finishes from them very soon. Thank you so much for your generous donations.
 I also received a large box of donated signature squares from an onljne quilting group's retreats. I belong to the group and have been to some of the retreats so I knew that I can use them for donation quilts, as I have done in the past. There is a different theme for each retreat and those who wish to swap pair a 6.5 inch square of fabric in a colour to match the theme, as well as a 6.5 inch square of cream fabric that they decorate with their name, State etc. There are blocks from 7 retreats which means lots of fabric to use. Firstly, I separate all the signature squares and take off any buttons or decorative items which have been attached. As these squares show people's names, I usually use the back of the block so you can't read the name, as well as cutting them up.
 The photo below shows blocks from one retreat which had an autumn theme and we sewed two 4 inch blocks, folded diagonally, across the 6 inch signature block. You can see one in the photo above. As none of the cream or 4 inch blocks were cut, it's been easy to unpick the stitching and I will have a large pile of 6.5 inch cream squares and 4 inch fabric squares so I will select a quilt block and remake them.
 You can see I will have lots of fabric to use so I am sorting them into colours and themes as I take them apart. Ann B. from Vic. very kindly passed on the unwanted swap blocks and I plan to select a block, like Sawtooth Stars, and make lots of blocks from them, adding from my own stash as well.
In the meantime, I am taking some time to work on these while I put my feet up and recover from my head cold. I have several quilt UFOs I want to finish but they are so old that another week or two won't matter.
Thanks gor stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac