Thursday 27 December 2007


Here are my first ATCs:


The blue ones are made from the strippieced remnants for the railfence block of my sampler.
I like it that you can use all sorts of leftover bits and pieces for ATCs!

Sunday 23 December 2007

Reverse Garbage

Yesterday Karla (the bookbinding artist) and I went to Reverse Garbage, a wonderful non-profit store (no affils) that sells 'industrial and commercial offcuts, overruns, left-overs, outdated stock and seconds'. Apart from timber, cardboard, paper, metal, tiles etc etc etc, they have lots of fabric, very suitable for crazy quilting or... ATCs!
So I had a ball collecting lots of scraps:


And I also found this wonderful sample book with fabric and wallpaper samples:


I am sure I can use the fabric for lots of things... and Karla has kindly offered to teach me some basic bookmaking skills to make a book for the children using the wallpaper.

I haven't done anything quilty since finishing the puffin last week, but I have been thinking a lot about the ATCs and have some ideas now that I hope to realize somewhere next week. Some kind ladies have sent me some ATCs so I now have an impression of what they look (and feel!) like.

In the meantime my sampler is a favourite with Hugo:


'I don't want to go to bed! But I will lie on the floor under my quilt.'

Finally, I would like to wish all the readers of this blog a very happy Christmas and a wonderful 2008!


Wednesday 19 December 2007


Here's the second mini quilt in my bird series: the puffin!

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Not a bird you will find in Australia (or in The Netherlands for that matter), but one of my favourite birds ever since I saw it in Scotland years ago.

These mini quilts can be made in little time (a few evenings work) and are so much fun!
I plan on making an owl, an eagle, a parrot...
They will have to take turns hanging on the wall though; we haven't got enough space to hang them all!

The next thing I am going to do is probably not another bird quilt, but have a go at making some ATCs (Artist Trading Cards). I have signed up for an ATC swap in april, but haven't made any yet, so I need to practice. I'm looking forward to that - think it will be fun.

Comments on the puffin are very welcome; if you have any suggestions on how to improve the bird quilts I'd like to hear them!

Sunday 16 December 2007

Dutch quilt and more

At last I finished the Dutch quilt, that has been lying in the sewing room waiting to be quilted for months. I had already put a label on it and it says June 2007...
Looking at it now I realize how much I have learned since then!

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I intend to make it into a pillowcase to put on the couch were I photographed it.

Thanks for all the lovely comments about the kookaburra quilt! It is now hanging on the wall, next to the Christmas tree:

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I have started another mini bird quilt and hope to be able to show it here very soon.

Hugo made these farewell gifts for his Kindergarten teachers, using some of my scraps:

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I meant to take the box of scraps to our Playgroup last week and let the children make collages, but unfortunately Ernst was ill, so we couldn't go. We'll do it sometime next term.

Last week (12/12) was our 5th wedding anniversary and DH gave me this beautiful book as a present:

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It is the Sunset Book, made by Karla (a fellow Dutchie in Brisbane). She has more lovely books for sale on her site, which you can also find among the links on this blog. Do have a look!

Sunday 9 December 2007

Kookaburra quilt

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I just finished this mini-quilt (25 x 35 cm), using the method described in this book by Susan Carlson.
I immensely enjoyed making it, especially the free-motion quilting, and I'd really like to hear your opinion!

Here's a detail of the quilting:

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Wednesday 5 December 2007

Bow Bag

Here's the Bow Bag!

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Loved the pattern, very easy to make!
I'm really in a 'sewing-flow', so off to the next project!

Saturday 1 December 2007


Yesterday I finished the sampler from the beginners course at The Quilters Corner:

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I'm quite happy with it and Hugo loves it, so we have put it on his bed.
Hugo and Ernst's bedroom is starting to look very cosy with quilts lying on both beds and one hanging on the wall!

I have started on Monica Poole's Bow bag and hope to be able to put a picture of it here soon...

Sunday 18 November 2007


Haven't done much quilting since the retreat- spent my evenings watching The House of Elliott.
We saw the last part yesterday, so I hope to do some sewing this week!
I did make this block for the birthday block list:

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I like it very much; maybe I'll ask this one for my birthday... (still haven't decided on a block). It's the Laced Star from The Quilter's Cache.

The sampler I'm making at the beginners course is almost finished; 2 more classes to go. I'll show it here when it's finished.

I've started to unpick the meridians on the I Spy quilt. I just couldn't live with it. It's a lot of unpicking, but I'm doing it bit by bit, so I won't get frustrated and rip the fabric. Ernst loves it anyway.

Wednesday 7 November 2007

Magic quilt

I finally got around to hanging Hugo's magic quilt on the wall in his bedroom. I made it for his 4th birthday in February 2007. Technically it is far from perfect (I cringe when I look at the binding now...) but I still love it. The patterns are from the book 'Spellbinding Quilts' by Maaike Bakker (see my quilting library).

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Our house is starting to look very cosy with all these quilts hanging and lying in it! :-)

Monday 5 November 2007

Back from the retreat

Here I am, back from the retreat and proud to show the jar quilt that I started AND finished during the weekend! (hanging sleeve and label included!)

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The retreat was wonderful; I had a great time. Didn't even miss my boys. Good food, nice company, a bed and a shower and sewing, sewing, sewing!
Apart from the jar quilt I did my homework for the beginners course (sewing the sashings on my sampler) and made a block for the Dutch birthday blocks list.
Here are some pics:

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This was very hard (NOT!):

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The area was great as well, although we didn't see much of it...

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Julie, thanks for organizing the retreat; I enjoyed it very much. I'm looking forward to next year!

The jar quilt is hanging in our living room now; the boys love it (but this one's mine!):

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Maybe I'll applique a little hand on the quilt, as someone suggested on this blog. I have to buy fabric first though!

Sunday 28 October 2007

Birthday boy

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Well, I finished the I Spy quilt Friday night, so I even had one day left until Ernst's birthday party today! (I finished Hugo's birthday quilt last February at 10 pm the night before his birthday)

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After sandwiching the quilt I decided I didn't want the quilting to 'spoil' the world map on the backside, so I quilted the world map in the meridians and the circles of latitude, thinking it wouldn't matter much on the frontside with all the colourful patches. Outside the map I meandered along the seams on the frontside. I now regret quilting the world map, because it makes the front side too 'quilted' - just meandering all the seams would have been much nicer. But alas, it's done - if I ever make another I Spy quilt (which won't be for a long time) I'll do it differently.

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I also wish I had put the map on its side, so it would be easier to look at when it's lying on the bed, but that can't be helped either.

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Ernst liked the quilt, but of course his Thomas the Tank Engine railway set was a lot more interesting... ;-)

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I'm very glad it's finished and have promised myself that after I've made the rosy quilt for our bed I will not make a large quilt again for a while - quilting it on a domestic sewing machine isn't much fun... (I have a Janome DC 3050, not a quilting machine at all, but I'm quite happy with it and besides, we don't have the money for me to buy another one for a long time yet! This one's only 18 months old, so I should be able to use it for years and years to come) And small quilts can be very beautiful as well, and are a good way for me to try different techniques and themes.

I went to the Queensland Quilt Show yesterday and enjoyed it very much! Here you can view the winning quilts. My favourite without any doubt was 'Squared Up' by Lisa Walton, which won second prize in the Commmercially Quilted section and the Trophy for Best Use of Colour.
I also noticed again that I love pictorial quilts (there was a very nice one depicting a Queenslander); I'd really like to try and make one.

It's a bit disheartening to be at such a show and see so many beautiful quilts, and to realise how far distant you yourself are from that level of quilting, and wonder if you will ever reach it... Last week at the beginners course all my triangles were wonky - I'm definitely not a triangle person! ;-) And I suspect I'm not a traditional quilts person either, so there may be hope for me in other areas...

Next weekend I'll go to the quilt retreat. I'm not sure what I'll work on there - don't feel like starting another large project yet, maybe I'll just make another bag (still have to do a Bow Bag!)... Or shall I have a go at creating some ATCs, I'd like to do that too?...

I'll let you know what it has become in the next posting - I'm quite sure I won't have anything to show or tell here before the weekend!

Monday 22 October 2007

I Spy top finished!

Yesterday I finished the I Spy top:

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Six days left to make it into a quilt!

How shall I quilt it? I haven't got much time, I don't really want to quilt in the ditch... Any suggestions welcome!

Monday 15 October 2007

Jars galore

It's been a while - we had a very nice holiday in Noosa (to keep this on a quilty note: I managed to finish 'The Runaway Quilt' by Jennifer Chiaverini - one of her best, I think); pictures can be found on our Going to Brissy-blog.

I'm working very hard on the I Spy quilt for Ernst; it has to be finished on Sunday the 28th of October, when we celebrate his birthday. I've made 19 of 24 blocks so far and hope to finish the top this week. I'll show a pic of it then and ask your opinion on the quilting!

I started the beginners quilting course at The Quilters Corner last week and loved it. I've already learned a lot of useful things in just one lesson!
We're making a sampler (of course) and I am using the lovely blue FQs I got for my birthday. I'm really looking forward to the next lesson on Wednesday!

And finally... the jars! I won the block lottery at the Dutch quilters mailing list last month and have got a lot of jar blocks now! (including the 4 I made myself)

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(the little hand belongs to my 1-year old, grabbing the jar just when I took the pic)

So after finishing the I Spy quilt I can make another quilt very quickly! Maybe it's a good project to take to the quilt retreat at Lake Moogerah... (I'm looking forward to that sooo much, if only because I'll be able to sleep a whole night without being woken by a teething toddler!)

Friday 28 September 2007

I Spy...

I've made a start on the I Spy-quilt for Ernst:

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I want to make 20 or 24 blocks like this, but it'll have to wait for a while, because tomorrow we're going off on holiday to Noosa!

A few lovely ladies have mailed me that they have some I Spy-fabric for me - Shirley and Helen; thanks very much! I really appreciate it!

On October 10th my beginners quilting course at The Quilters Corner starts - I'm looking forward to that. I've more or less taught myself to sew and to quilt until now and I'd like to have some lessons. I also really want to learn to applique - something I haven't dared to try yet.

But first a week without fabric - but with a tent, a beach and 'An Elm Creek Quilts Album'!

Friday 21 September 2007

Birthday presents

From the Dutch birthday lists that I belong to I got a lot of lovely fabrics (all fat quarters):

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A lot of rose fabrics for the queen size quilt I want to make for our bed, some gorgeous blue fabric and some very nice boys' fabric. These last ones come in handy for the I Spy quilt I have decided to make for Ernst's 3rd birthday in October. I found a world map panel for the backing on which we can point out to him where we live now (Brisbane) and where we come from (The Netherlands). I have done some cutting for the I Spy quilt last week and ordered an I Spy charm pack from an online store, so I should be able to start sewing soon.

DH gave me a dvd as a birthday present: part 2 of the series The House of Elliott . I got part 1 last year and spent some delightful hours watching it with my newborn baby in my arms (Koen was born 3 days before my birthday; he just turned 1!). Don't you just love that series!

Thursday 6 September 2007

Finished the babyquilt

Today I finished the railfence babyquilt,so DH can take it with him to The Netherlands tomorrow. I am quite sure the baby's mother won't look at this blog, so I can show the pictures here:

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When I finished the top I thought it was rather pale and maybe not very suitable for a boy, but with the bright backing and the green binding it is much better. The dark background on the photo doesn't do it right though.

It's funny; without meaning to I made a purple and green quilt again! (well, lilac and dark green, but still)

I think I will take a couple of days off from sewing and finish the book I just started (Jodi Piccoult, My Sister's Keeper - very good!). After that I may start on another bag or maybe on a quilt for Ernst's birthday; he'll be 3 on 31 October. I ordered some chalkboard fabric and intend to make a little quilt with that at the center. Maybe I'll use some of the Bob the Builder fabric that's still in my stash...

Meanwhile the envelopes for my birthday (18 September) keep arriving, I have 9 envelopes already waiting for me! So far I've been able to withstand the temptation to peek inside.

Did I mention that I am so very content with my carpetbag? It truly is a wonderful bag - have you seen the movie Mary Poppins? (one of my favourite Disney movies) Remember how she takes lots of things out of that bag you'd think would never fit in there? Well, it really is like that! It looks like a small bag, but you can put such a lot of things in it! Like all the usual things (mobile phone, keys, wallet, lipstick, chewing gum, sunglasses, pen) and also an umbrella, pack of sandwiches, apple, diary, battery charger for the mobile phone, book you're reading, present you bought for your eldest son, etc etc etc!

Monday 3 September 2007


Yesterday I finished The Carpetbag:

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It wasn't as easy as the other bags; I've had to do quite a lot of frog-stitching ('rip-it, rip-it'), but I'm very happy with the result! I took it to work today; it has a lot of room for all sorts of things:

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This weekend I bought the backing, binding and batting for the railfence babyquilt. I have to finish it this week, so DH can take it with him to The Netherlands on Friday. He is going there to defend his thesis and will be away for 11 days.

I had really looked forward to going to the quiltshop last Saturday, but it was a bit of a disappointment. I had hoped for some advice on the fabric for the backing and binding, but the ladies in the store obviously didn't feel like helping, they just wanted to cut the fabric and cash the money, I think. A pity, part of the fun of shopping for quilty things for me is looking at fabrics and discussing the possible choices with friendly shopowners...

Tuesday 28 August 2007

And yet another bag...

Here's Basket Style Bag nr. 3! They're addictive...

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I also finished the top of the railfence babyquilt and hope to get fabric for the backing and batting this weekend. And after I've finished this one I'll be done with flannel babyquilts for quite a while, I guess! I long to start on an 'adult' quilt. Luckily it happens to be my birthday next month and I hope to receive a lot of rosy fat quarters for a blended quilt! (actually I already have 5 soft envelopes here, but have managed not to open them yet!)

The colour workshop last weekend was cancelled, because the teacher was ill. Maybe I will do it next term.

The next projects for now are the Carpetbag, Bow Bag and (yet another!) Basket Style Bag. I should start selling them... ;-)

PS Look here for a surprise!

Saturday 18 August 2007

Back on track

Now that my teaching duties are over, I finally have time to get on with my quilts! I've started the railfence babyquilt and am also doing some delectable mountains-blocks for the Dutch quilters mailinglist that I belong to.

Next weekend I will attend a colour workshop at Quilt'n Stitch in Geebung. And in November I will go on my first quilt retreat, a weekend at Lake Moogerah! It will also be my first weekend away since Koen was born (15 September 2006). I'm really looking forward to it!

No pictures today - I hope to be able to show something again soon.
I've had a few compliments about the lilac bag from complete strangers; that was very nice! :-)

Sunday 5 August 2007

And another one...

I made another one... It's so easy! ;-)

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Saturday 21 July 2007

My second bag

Yesterday I finished my second bag:

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It's the Basket Style Bag from U-Handbag, my favorite blog/online store. You can find the instructions for making it here. It's really easy and can be done in one evening (as I did yesterday).
And you can see my bag here now as well!

Isn't it cute? I'm completely in love with it... And have fabric for 2 more! ;-)
(but there won't be much sewing in the next few weeks, as I have to prepare the lectures on TB that I'm giving at UQ in August...)

Last Monday I went to the Patch 'n' Chat Christmas in July function. It was great, I enjoyed it very much. Lots of beautiful quilts on display, guest speaker Sue Dennis who told about her quilting journey up till now and showed some of her stunning quilts, the handing over of Little Quilts of Love to a representative of the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital, a raffle and lots of delicious finger food! Here are a few photos:

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