Thursday, 4 December 2008

David's Completed Needlepoint

I am so proud of my lad David's latest creation. He made this as a gift for his school teacher. When he completed it, we had it framed and here it is.......

Monday, 24 November 2008

Game Farm

We went to visit friends who stay on a Game Farm a couple of sundays ago and went for a game drive. We saw a 5 metre long African Rock Python. It was gliding across the road. What an amazing sight.

Notice how thick the python's body is.....
Apart from all the usual game, we saw a 1 week old giraffe calf. What a beautiful sight. The mother hides to give birth to her calf and then about 1 week later brings her calf out and introduces it to the rest of the herd. We watched the introductions yesterday afternoon - a sight to behold. David took all the photos.

Tuesday, 18 November 2008


We had a tornado like storm last friday afternoon. We are very fortunate. A big tree on our verge fell onto our perimeter fence, destroying the gate in the process. It fell at 45 degrees to our house otherwise we would have lost part of our house. The dogs didn't even go out through the broken gate. It was too fast for me. I was at the shops, knew that a storm was on the way. By the time I realised that there might be a problem, the storm was almost over. Some people in our district lost their houses. They were flattened totally by the wind etc. Sad too lose everything.
These are some of the photos......

Monday, 10 November 2008

African Elephant

It's been a long time since I have quilted and written about my quilts. I have just started working on a new wall hanging - an African Elephant in Silhoutte on top of a crazy patch/log cabin backround standing under a Baobab tree. The backround will represent the green bush/grass, blue sky and yellow sun. I'll post photos as I go. Am looking forward to seeing how it turns out......

Tuesday, 29 July 2008

Vaulting - Balance in motion

My youngest son has taken up vaulting - gymnastics on horseback - more photo opportunities....... The children first practice the routine on a barrel before they move onto the back of the horse.There is a quilt in here somewhere.... :D

Friday, 4 July 2008

Salukis, Salukis and more Salukis

I have finally got round to make a photo quilt for a friend of mine..... She breeds Salukis and is passionate about them. I am going to "immortilize" them in fabric for her. Below is a sneak preview of the photos I'll be using. As always, I am going to use fabrics from the Amafu range. I just love the colour range that Amafu produces. The fabric that I am going to print the photos on is already on the line drip drying. Tomorrow I will attempt to print the photos onto the fabric....

And this is what the photos look like transfered onto fabric:

There is a trick to getting photos printed onto fabric......It takes about 30 hours and if the backing paper is longer than the fabric or vise versa, then the fabric folds and gets stuck in the printer..... but I am learning.....I think this quilt is going to look awesome but then I am biased..... :D. I can't wait to cut the photos out and add fabric to them - Crazy Patch here I come........

At long last, I have started putting the quilt together..... These are photos of the fabric blocks.....

Monday, 16 June 2008

My African Dream

I seem to have an obsession with my little African Tribal Dog, Niyka :LOL. Here is another quilt that she has inspired. For this quilt I have used only African fabrics. The fabrics were either designed and printed in South Africa or West Africa. The basic design is made up of string piecing blocks which are sewn together in strips of 4 blocks across. I have then cross cut these strips with wavy lines and inserted black stripes - to signify Niyka's stripes. I am going to quilt the top with circles signifying the "Circle of Life". The top is no longer square - any ideas how to get it square again? I am not keen on wetting the quilt as the colours might run.......

The quilting is finally done. I quilted spirals all over the top to represent the circle of life. The spirals are uneven - is life ever smooth and even :D
Now I just have to put the binding and sleeve on and then the quilt is done. I am really pleased with the way it has turned out - even if I say so myself :-)

Then it is onto the next project....... if I can get my back to behave.......

This quilt is finally finished!!!! I can't believe it. It is a success even if I say so myself. A celebration of the richness and variety of Africa. I am passionate about Africa.

Thursday, 15 May 2008

Darned quilts

I am taking a class through Online University called "Darned Quilts". It is awesome. Dena Crain is a wonderful person. I would recommend everyone who has the opportunity to do a course with her. I think I have finally found the vehicle to portray my little African tribal dog called Niyka - see photo of her below. She is a brindled AfriCanis. She is lying sleeping on the back legs of my Giant Schnauzer. Ok.... the red Persian carpet is not such a good place to take a photo of a brindled dog. :LOL

The next photo is the backround of my Darned Quilt - the next steps are to embellish the backround which I shall do this weekend........ As always, my fabric is hand dyed and comes from Amafu in South Africa. Glenda from Amafu produces the most amazing fabric.

Monday, 14 April 2008

Published for the first time

Fame at last..... Well local fame that is :D. The 2 crazy patch quilts I made for a friend's children (see earlier posts) have been published in a local stitchcraft magazine - I am so proud I am showing off the magazine to the whole world. Here is the article published in the magazine:

Tuesday, 25 March 2008

String Quilt

I have finally put the string quilt top together, well almost. I ran out of black fabric to do the side borders. Now all I have to do is buy the backing fabric and the batting and finish it off :D

The string quilt blocks have finally been sewn in very crooked rows. Now I have to straighten the rows and find some way of joining the rows together to make a quilt. Any suggestions, anyone.......

Well, I cut my nice square blocks up to make irregular shapes. The trick now is going to be to put all of them together to make a geometrically shaped quilt. I can't wait to see how the quilt turns out........

I am almost finished with the Animals in Log Cabins quilt so have decided to learn a new technique - String quilting. This is awesome - you play with offcuts of material and sew them on a backround fabric. These are my first 3 blocks I did last night. Watch this space for more blocks..........

Monday, 24 March 2008

Shweshwe pants

I made some cargo 3/4 pants from traditional South African fabrics called Shweshwe fabric. I used a big bold pattern for the side pockets and a smaller pattern for the main part of the pants. There are bits of yellow in the main fabric. I made the top pockets out of the main fabric. Retrospectively I should have possibly use the bold pattern for all the pockets. :-) Next time......... (I think I need to take better photos...... or crop them better.......:-)

Saturday, 23 February 2008

Playing with lines and shapes

I am doing an online course through the Quilt University called Playing with Lines and Shapes. It is a basic design course and wow, it is stretching the imagination. It is amazing where one ends up after starting with a straight line. I have uploaded a few of the many drawings I did. As I work through the course I'll add photos to this post. All I can say is..... watch this space.....

I have finally managed to convert one of the above sketches into a fabric sample - see below. I am not so sure about how it has turned out. Except I created it as the reverse image of the sketch :LOL

Tuesday, 5 February 2008

Pretty in Pink

I have finally finished this quilt and it has come out rather well (if you ask me). The girl I gave it to last night would not let it go. She was so pleased with it. It makes the effort all worthwhile.....

This is a close up photo of one of the blocks and sashing showing the trademark hearts that I tend to quilt on all the sashing of the quilts I make.

A quilt for a pretty little girl who loves pink. This quilt is for a friend's daughter. She is 5 years old and is such a cute little girl. I am not a "Pink" person so I really battled making the blocks. The more blocks I had to make the more I thought dark thoughts and gave the blocks black looks.... :LOL. However it is good for one to sometimes make quilts that are not easy to do, using colours that are not one's favourite etc. It stretches one's mind and allows one to conquer difficult challenges which gives one a certain sense of self worth and personal satisfaction which are very important. (ok..... philosophising over for the day....) I sewed the blocks together in conjunction with the "Under the Sea" quilt so putting the top together was a lot easier. Now I have to quilt it........

Tuesday, 22 January 2008

Under the Sea

I have finally finished this quilt and it looks great. I am posting photos of the whole quilt so you can see the overall effect. It is a traditional quilt using a combination of traditional and non traditional fabrics. What I find interesting is that the blocks look as though they are not straight in the sashing - they are, it is just use of colours that creates the effect. It is actually a study in colour using a traditional vehicle. The fish look as though they are randomly swimming in the blue quilt sea.

The next photo is a close up of a couple of the blocks. You can see the hearts that I have quilted on the sashing. My son David calls them "Mom's loving hearts" and they have become a trademark on all the quilts I make.

The last photo is one a close up of my stipple quilting. (Sorry, this photo is a bit blurred.....) I have finally mastered free motion stipple quilting and am rather proud of myself. Now I can't wait to put the quilt together so I can quilt the top with my free motion foot. :LOL It's amazing how our attitudes change...... At first I was scared of free motion quilting. Now I can't wait to do the quilting.....

More crazy patch fish quilts you ask? Well..... I love the crazy patch design and had some fish material in my stash...... so a friend's little boy has a fish quilt. I guess I enjoy doing traditional designs in between the hectic creative spells. It relaxes my mind and allows me to think of new designs while I am sewing these quilts. I also love the unpredictablility of a crazy patch quilt. There is no way of knowing how the quilts are going to turn out when made up into a quilt. Each block is similar yet different so it is a always a suprise to see what the quilt looks like when it is done. I love the fact that the blocks don't look straight. They look as though they have been randomly placed between the sashing and yet..... every block is square and the same size. How to create chaos out of order....... :LOL. I love it.