Thursday, 19 March 2009

~ Ta Da ~

It's finally finished!! My first SAL with Sandra for 2009 is finally finished .... yay!!!!

I stitched, I dyed, I crackled , I tore my hair out, I re-dyed, I re-crackled, I tore my hair out some more but then I resigned myself to the fact that I had tried my best and even although it isn't perfect, I did it and it is kind of OK!!

Sooooooo here is Blackbird Designs Autumn Song!!!!!

I made the tiny pouch for a cute little acorn waxer that Sandra sent me.

Now, here is Sandra's beauty....

Don't you just love that lining fabric and those little acorn accessories.

Thanks Sandra for doing this SAL with me . Autumn Song has been on my 'to-do list' for a long while and now, with your support and encouragement, it is done. We are now onto week two of our second SAL project for the year ~ With My Needle ~ Flowers For Lily which is a pretty little needlecase and shouldn't be quite as tricky to assemble as the box LOL!!

Thank you for your concern for us over the cyclone threat we had. Fortunately, the cyclone didn't cause us any problems personally but it did cause major environmental issues locally when a shipping container lost 31 containers overboard and up to 30 tonnes of heavy fuel oil leaked into the sea when the containers came loose and tumbled overboard piercing the hull of the MV Pacific Adventurer. It has been disastrous for the wildlife and required a huge clean up to our beautiful coast beaches.

I am also very cross with our local council at present who decided to cut down 50 beautiful trees which lined the street that our house backs onto. The beautiful weeping fig trees have gone!! We have been informed they will be replaced with 'more suitable species' but all I could think of was the poor little birds, who had nests in them, flying off when they were frightened by the noise and later coming back to find their trees, homes, nests and babies gone!!! I am thinking of putting up a sign in my garden..... what do you think??

I think that I shall never see
A poem lovely as a tree.
A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the earth's sweet flowing breast;
A tree that looks at God all day
And lifts her leafy arms to pray;
A tree that may in Summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair;
Upon whose bosom snow has lain;
Who intimately lives with rain.
Poems are made by fools like me,
But only God can make a tree.

~Joyce Kilmer, 1914

Monday, 9 March 2009

~ Things Sometimes Just Don't Go Right ~

Since I am almost ready to assemble my Autumn Song sewing box, over the weekend I attempted the painting and crackle technique I need to do. After following the instructions carefully , I waited with baited breath for the crackle to happen.....zilch, zero, nothing!! So off to Spotlight I went to complain about the crackle medium, buy a different brand and a new box. I also attempted the antiquing of the fabric also without too much success. Oh dear!! It just wasn't happening. The antiquing required me to remove some of the colour from the fabric and then to over-dye it with a tan dye but it was a bit 'hit and miss' as to how long I needed to leave the fabric in the dye remover before I removed it and did the over-dyeing. I was afraid I might have ended up with no pattern left on my fabric so I think I removed it too early. Actually, the colour looked pretty nice when it was still wet but after it dried, it seemed a bit too orange.

Here are the 'before and after' photos.

Hhhmmmm, I have yet to decide what plan B will be!! I think the acorns which were in the before photos, quite obviously look like acorns, now tend to look a bit more like Christmas lights :-/ I still have half of the dye remover and tan dye left so might try again on another piece of fabric. I guess it is all a learning curve.

On a more positive note, my shadow continues to be well and really enjoyed his trip to the beach on Saturday.

These photos show that he does do more than just lie around the house which is what he always seems to be doing in the photos I show of him. LOL!! He loves the beach and gets so excited when he knows he is going.

We are on Cyclone alert here in Queensland at present with 'Tropical Cyclone Hamish' making his way south east. It has been downgraded to a category 4 which is still very strong and could potentially cause a lot of damage. We really hope it will blow out or head off out to sea before it reaches us here.

As always, thank you for visiting my blog. It is really special to receive your comments.

If a mistake is not a stepping stone, it is a mistake.

~Eli Siegel

Sunday, 1 March 2009

~ Autumn, Beautiful Autumn ~

You probably get the picture - Autumn along with Spring, are my two most favourite seasons. Not that here in the sub-tropics, we get a lot of the beautiful Autumnal colour changes that the cooler climates get, but it will eventually bring a reprieve from the high humidity and very hot temperatures that can be rather exhausting.

My current SAL project seems very appropriate ~ Blackbird Designs ~ Autumn Song. Sandra and I have both finished the box top stitching and Sandra has also finished the box band and has started on the pin cushion, while I am still lagging a little behind and still finishing the alphabet box band.

It is interesting seeing the subtle but noticeable differences in our two projects ~ Sandra's (bottom picture) is stitched on 32 ct even weave fabric with GAST threads and mine (top) is on 30ct Korty's Special Blend linen with WDW threads.

Although I have read over the instructions for assembling the sewing box several times, it is still not really becoming clear to me yet so I can see that being quite a challenge.

On a trip to Brisbane to see my two darling grand-daughters last week, I managed to finally stop off at a little Patchwork shop I had passed by on the way many times before, so this time I stopped off for a look. I picked up these three fat quarters and a pair of cute little floral scissors.

The fabrics are Blackbird Designs from the Harvest Home series and the other Cottage Charm is a sweet sampler design alphabet.

Ben, hasn't made an appearance for a while so here he is enjoying a treat the other day and sporting a little shaved patch on his arm after a trip to the vet for a check over and blood tests. Sadly, he recently gave us another scare when he had a second seizure. The first was last October, and it seems the diagnosis is epilepsy. This apparently, is quite a common thing in dogs and often occurs around Ben's age. (He turns four next month) For the present moment we have made the decision , with the approval from our vet, to watch and wait before making the very serious decision to put him on medication, which will be every twelve hours for his lifetime.

Ben also reminded me that I needed to say thank you to all who take the time to visit our blog and for leaving us comments which we love to receive.

Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree.
~ Emily Bronte