Around the world blog hop + Winner

Jo over at Riddle and Whimsy asked me if I would like to do the Around the World Blog hop. Of course, I jumped in. Jo and I have been doing the Gypsy Wife Quilt Pattern together, and she has some great posts for Sunday Stash. Have you seen Jo’s Possum Magic Traveling Quilt group?? It looks like so much fun and you should see the border she added onto Sharon’s center…LOVE IT!! Take a look and get to know her.

I always find it hard to talk about me but at least there are questions to answer, so here goes.

1. What am I working on?

More appropriately, would be what am I not working on ;-). I have about 9 projects on the go at the moment, which is crazy, even for me.


I have a couple of secret projects underway….one is being revealed later today/tomorrow…so stay tuned. I am also part of the Quilt Design a Day group this is one of my favorite activities I am doing (though this week I took a break).

2. How does my work differ from others of its genre?

I would consider myself a modern quilter. I am still finding myself as a quilter though and experimenting, when I can on several different projects, big and small. I do predominantly like designing my own quilts and putting them together. A friend of mine calls me a “Topper”, as I like to finish the tops and then I lose interest.

I like the fact that I can incorporate in the design elements my background of math + science, arts and kiwi (NZ) heritage all in this hobby. I like everything from simple structural designs that play with the negative space, improv. piecing to the abstract.

3. Why do I write/create what I do?

I started to write and create around the same time. I was looking for folks that had common interests and also looking for a hobby in which I could do to break up the stress from work and also provide me with some me time. I found an answer through my blog and quilting to these. I really do it for myself, though much of what I make I give away.

4. How does my writing/creating process work?

Some days it can be easy, other days not. When I started, I would stress about getting a finish done or what I was going to post today, how many followers I have etc. Over the last few months, I realized that since I am doing this for myself, I am putting me first. I post when I can. I will say that I use this space to share what I am creating and also I hope to share ideas or inspire the people around me (follow me).

Instagram has been fantastic tool I have added….I love the instant feedback, so I have been sharing a lot more there (ml_wilkie) when I have questions or if I need to make decisions over the next step to take. I hate making decisions, so IG has been fantastic to also include.

Who’s up Next

My good friend Daisy @ Ants to Sugar, is up next week. Hopefully, the baby won’t come early – yes she is due this month. She has recently created her first paper piecing pattern, which is a fantastic sailing boat. I love the variety of projects she is working on this year…quilts, pouches, cushions, and aeroplane bags.

Winner of Savor each Stitch

The winner of Savor each Stitch is:
Screen Shot 2014-09-01 at 11.56.58 AMwhich is Delaine. Congratulations, and I will be emailing you to get your details today.

Stop by tomorrow, as I am celebrating my 2 year blogiversary and I will have another giveaway involving fabric and other goodies!!

Book Review: Savor each stitch

I am so excited about this book review as I have taken a couple of Carolyn Friedlander’s classes and loved every minute of them. Not only is she such a wonderful person, but she truely inspires me with her projects and fabrics. I had high hopes for her book and after several months of waiting for the book to finally ship, I was not disappointed.


SavorEachStitchTitle: “Savor Each Stitch” – 13 quilts to make with friends
Author: Carolyn Friedlander
Publisher: Lucky Spool Media
ISBN:  978-1-94065-501-7

I found this book a fascinating read which I read cover to cover. While it contains projects, the book is a study on various topics which are covered in the 7 main sections – Line, Contrast, Scale, Color, Emphasis, Volume and Texture.

Each section talks about the idea and concept and really helps you to think about what you are doing and provides guidance that can be applied to your own projects. Each section has a little workshop/exercise that you can try out to help assist in grasping the concept that is being described. One of my favorite things is the study/analysis of the topic continues in the projects. At least 3 examples of how the project could be applied are provided.

The projects are all fabulous. I will make, at some stage, the majority of these projects as either gifts for myself or for others.

You can check out many of the projects in Carolyn’s blog post on the Spring Quilt Market.

I loved this book. It is one of the few sewing/quilting books that I have read vs. flicked through just for the projects.  I would recommend it to anyone so it is a 5/5:
images-6 images-7 images-8 images-9 images-4


Usually, I would attempt the project in the book, however, the project I will show is not from the book. My “Phased Circles” Quilt I had design and created thinking about the concepts in the book.  This quilt allowed me to explore multiple aspects: Emphasis (Design), Contrasts, Colors, and use of circles and lines.

Project: Phased Circles (Technique – Machine Piecing and Needle Turn Applique)
Phased Circles Outside
Continues to the back with the use of graduating colors.


One brand new copy of this book will be given away, all you need to do is leave a comment on “What is your favorite thing to do, to savor each stitch? Is there a project where you have stopped to think about the design or applied color theory or played with texture?”.

There is a second chance to win if you are a follower, just leave a second comment. A winner will be chosen at random this Sunday 31st August at 6pm EST.

A disclaimer, all reviews and opinions of the books reviewed will be mine, unless otherwise stated. Please note, I may not respond to all comments due to volume and bandwidth.

My list of WiP’s

This month, I felt like I got a lot accomplished. It is so hard not to share photos of everything you are doing!! I still have 5 days including today to get my list down….and I will be using every day, for sure.

  • Finish “Neighborhood” Quilt – quilt and bind (this will be my main goal for August for A Lovely Year of Finishes) [QUILTING PROJECT FOR THIS WEEKEND]
  • Finish “Spoonflower Sampler” Quilt – quilt and bind [TARGET: NEXT MONTH FINISH]
  • Finish “Phased Circles” Quilt – baste, quilt and bind (basting is complete and quilting will start in September) [TARGET: NEXT MONTH, expecting an OCTOBER Finish]
  • Finish testing a paper piecing pattern (Bjorn the Bear) – piece/top, baste, quilt and bind,
  • Project 1: Secret project ( ;-))  [PROJECT COMPLETE and WRITTEN UP].
  • Jungle Ave Tapa: this is the quilt I won for the design – cut, piece, top complete, baste, quilt and bind. [CUTTING AND PIECING UNDERWAY, maybe a top finished this weekend]

This is the only photo I will show of the “Jungle Ave Tapa” quilt, but here is a sneak peak just to prove I have actually started. I am excited!!


Linking up with Lee over at Freshly Pieced for WiP Wednesday (see button on the right).

Sunday Stash: Sewing Room Update

Last week, I posted about my fabric stash and the organizing of my guest room which was serving as a fabric overflow room.
IMG_2392 IMG_2396

On Saturday, I decided that I needed to move everything back into my sewing room and clean up that corner space. I added some shelving (from Target) on top of my book case and in my alcove space. The fabric is all moved back in, and my space is neat and tidy. I am doing a happy dance!!!


Shhh, I even have some room now  for a bit more fabric. Linking up with Molli Sparkles for Sunday Stash (see button on the right).



QDAD: Quilt Design a Day (Week 9)

I was a little behind this week, after working on the bear, Carolyn Friedlander’s Class and my son’s birthday. I spent much of the evening catching up on the week’s posts for Quilt Design a day.

14-16 August: Medallion Challenge Day 5-7

First up, the last 3 borders for the Medallion Quilt Design Challenge using these color palettes.
Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 10.31.10 AM Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 10.31.21 AM  Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 10.31.37 AM

QDAD_MedallionBorder4_14August QDAD_MedallionBorder5_15August QDAD_MedallionBorder6Final_16August

17 August: Mirrored Triangles
Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 10.31.48 AM

19 August: Zig Zaggy I
Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 10.32.12 AM

This design organically grew. I was adding a grey stripe to the back and had not as yet added the change to the mint green HST so they would blend. I decided to leave it as it created a different interest point which I liked.


20 August: Playing House
Screen Shot 2014-08-21 at 10.32.20 AM

The doll’s house design was inspired by this shelf from The Land of Nod. Would it not look great with some fussy cut Heather Ross prints??!! I got great feedback from Amy to add the chimney and the red backing was a favorite.


Fabric Stash + Basting

Over on IG (instagram) this week, I owned up to my fabric stash and my fabric addiction. It actually was a really good exercise for me. My husband and I always had an agreement that I could buy fabric just so long as it fitted in my sewing room…..well then my shelf broke and that is where this all starts :-)

So, my guest room landed up being the temporary storage room when my shelf broke (fall off the wall). Finally, this weekend I decided it was time to organize the fabric that had landed up there and move it onto comic book boards. Folding underway….


After around 3 1/2 sets of boards (each containing 100 boards) folding was complete. In this lot I have cotton and steel yardage (all of the prints), Katarina Roccella – Indelible, all of Alison Glass’ lines, Joel Dewberry – Bungalow, both of Francis Newcombe’s lines, Heather Ross….and more.


So, that was my overflow room. I decided I would own this totally and also shared the fabric actually in my sewing room. The first side of my project table contains my basic stash….all prints organized by color [Blues | Teals/aquas | greens |reds/pinks |oranges |blacks/grays | multi-color | browns/yellows |Purples/low-volumes].


The second side has been organized by designer and has my solid stash (which is mostly Kona). IMG_2395

Lastly, this is the messy part of my current storage that does need reorganizing (underway and hope to complete before the weekend). Down on the floor on the left, it starts with a bin/pail for all pre-cuts. On the book-case contains Project bins, Aurifil thread boxes, Linens/ Japanese prints, my fabric line from Spoonflower | more project bins,  quilting books |Flannel, Corduroy, Minky and Batting etc. On the far right side on the floor I have two more bins, 1 contains all the kid prints, the other fabrics that I use for bee blocks. IMG_2396

My goal for showing this is threefold;

  • is to really admit what I have,
  • and then take the steps to use and reduce the stash,
  • reorganize and move my overflow stash back into my sewing room.

From a project standpoint…..I finally got around to basting two of my quilting projects. I was at Spoonflower, last night, and got enough space to baste this one. Yay, onto quilting.


Linking up with Lee over at Freshly Pieced for WiP Wednesday (button on the right).

Bjorn the Bear

The Norwegian word for a bear is “Bjorn”. What a perfect name for my new quilt top.

I had the great pleasure of testing this giant bear paper piecing pattern for Juliet over @ Tartankiwi. Once again she developed a wonderful pattern!!

UPDATE: Pattern is now available in Juliet’s shop on Craftsy.


Here are some more details…

Block Size: 30 x 30 “
Technique: Paper Piecing
Fabric for Bear: Umbrella Prints
Fabric for Background: Netorious in Kerchief (Cotton and Steel), Collage Texture (Carrie Bloomston), and Full Circle in Egg Shell (Eloise Renouf)

When finished this will land up being a wall hanging for my friend Daisy (over @ Ants to Sugar), who is expecting a new arrival next month!! [Daisy, feel to rename the bear for when its in its new home :-)]

On another note, but still related…..Juliet @ Tartankiwi is running a fantastic challenge with her butterfly patterns. There are prizes (oakshott cottons!!). So,  check it out, have a go with her patterns – entries are open until 31st August.

The Tartankiwi

I am submitting the Kaleidoscope of Butterflies quilt, I made with her butterfly patterns….which details can be found here.
Kaleidoscope of Butterflies

Just to inspire you/ challenge you all to join in….some close ups of the two bigger butterflies.

10in_Butterfly 8in_Butterfly

Linking up with a few sites to celebrate that “bear” of a finish (hahaha)…

  • Sew Cute Tuesday – Guest post by Quiltineering (see button on right)
  • Let’s bee Social  – with Lorna at Sew Fresh Quilts (see button on right)
  • Finish it up Friday – with Amanda Jean @ Crazy Mom Quilts