WIP Wednesday #7

It has been a week of getting not much done at all. But I have a legitimate excuse (or three). For about three weeks I've been feeling...sore. Just in my tummy, sometimes my back, but enough that I was worried. I went to the doctor and even had a scan, and it appears I'm fine! Just not feeling right. Hmm. I'll be a bit more mindful of my exercise and perhaps see a chiropractor. Couldn't hurt, might help, and I'm so ready to be 110% again.

And then, THEN, I was peeling Piper's little arm up to check under them (I do everyday) and under her right arm it looked like a Sarlacc! (Well, maybe not that bad.) But man, it was angry and red and yucky. I thought it might be thrush so I took her in to our wonderful doctor straight away and the doctor took a swab and prescribed antibiotics because she reckoned it is bacterial! Eek! I'm glad I've obsessive about cleaning/checking Piper every day and even happier that I took her to the doctor first thing, before it got worse. Even after just two doses of the antibiotic she is feeling better, more restful, and sleeping soundly. Poor lambkin.

So after all that, this WIP Wednesday is pretty pathetic. Sorry guys!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

So this WIP is one of my OLDEST projects. I started repainting these thrifted chair frames back in 2010. THe seat cushions have been reupholstered and I absolutely adore the chairs, but with only one coat of green paint they looked frightful.

Just painting some chairs

They look better now but it needs to stop raining long enough for me to do a few more coats!

In Progress:

Sophie Makes Tracks HSTs are sewn, pressed, and I am just sewing them into the right configurations!

stacks and stacks

Pretty, aren't they?

Garden Fence: 15/49 blocks completed

garden fence

I can't wait to finish them and square and sash these bad boys!

Lolly Fields is about 80% hand-quilted. Love that variegated thread.

lolly fields

I will use a plain thread on the crazy chain setting triangles, however.

Sophie Makes Tracks: 6/81 blocks completed. I'm happy to take this one slow and do it right though.

bear claws

New quilts: None, but lots of ideas percolating!

No progress:

  • A Walk in the Woods
  • Ultraviolet
  • Rose Garden
  • (Un)Happy Campers
  • Downtown Dots

If you are a Sydneysider and a modern quilter, perhaps I'll see you Sunday at the Modern Quilt Guild meeting! Come say hi. I'm the one with the baby and the pink and brown bag!

How are your WIPs going? Let me know!

Cheers and have a great rest of the week!


Fabric Friday #9

Ooooh. Fabric Friday is here. And it's a great Fabric Friday because Mr Poppleton is coming home tonight! He was away for work and I have been moping around waiting for someone to nail my tail back on. (Eeyore, incidentally, is Kona Slate colored.) Even Piper has been sleepy and cross. We really miss Daddy.

But, while I waited for him to come home, I went shopping.

(No...No-Something November...I can't remember exactly...was it No-Willpower November?)

Anyway, it's the prettiest part of the week!

fabric friday

I took advantage thing of the sale at Craft Depot and found some patterned fabrics to add to various project piles. Check out that Heirloom (second one from the left).

Fabric Friday

Then I went a bit crazy with the big, patterned florals! How beautiful are these? That's some Moda, some Anna Maria Horner, and another Meadowsweet. These are borders if I ever saw! Or even splashy pieced backings! Oh, the possibilities!

Fabric Friday

Then I loaded up on some sale fabric from Killara Village Quilts. Check out that yellow. Those dandelion puffs just make me happy. Not to mention that matching Free Spirit fabric...I think you'll recollect the rainbow dandelion puff from a previous Fabric Friday, yes?

Fabric Friday

Ahh. Fabric. Faaaaabric. My stash is so boss.

Not to worry, though– I've also been working on fabric I already have. My bear claw points have been steadily increasing in numbers, and the pile of squared-off HSTs is large in all its glory!

HSTs…almost done!

And, after 323 of them, I was EXTREMELY happy to square up lucky number 324. THE LAST ONE!


I made a few practice blocks, and they are looking so nice! Unpressed, of course, as I was too impatient to wait for the iron to get hot. I strike BEFORE the iron is hot. That's just how I roll!

bear claws!

And, progress has been made with the Lolly Fields quilt. I decided to hand-quilt this wee lovely cot quilt. Hand-quilting is one of my favorite ways to finish a quilt.. It's such a sweet activity and I love the way it looks. Here I am using Valdani's variegated thread in M36. It is the nicest thread I use, and in color it can't be matched.


And of course, today was a beautiful day for sewing. The view from my window is nice even on a cloudy day, but on days like this, it's absolutely striking.

gum tree

And finally, I'd like to introduce you all to Beryl. She's the newest addition to our family and I have to say, I love her an awful lot. As you can see, I've already put her straight to work!


Look at all them purty buttons. Hee! Mr Poppleton asked me to make sure it doesn't say "SkyNet" anywhere on the machine...a valid concern. (Nor, to my disappointment, does it play the Imperial March. Boo.) I love this machine, even if it's going to take me weeks and months to figure out how to use it. Ah. So excited.

But Beryl is no match for this cutie-pie. Look at her. She's WATCHING SESAME STREET. (Or Gilmore Girls. I can't remember. I parked her on the couch while I packed my handbag and she was so drowsy she just focused right on the screen. Ooops...)

cutie patootie

That's her tired face. She's the cutest. I'm so blessed!

Have a great weekend everyone!


WIP Wednesday #6

Firstly, THANK YOU to everyone who stopped by last week! I am still trying to figure out how to reply to comments but I have been checking out and bookmarking blogs like crazy, and I loved the feedback. Part of the reason I decided to focus on quilting in this blog is because quilters are so supportive of one another. There is a lot of helpfulness and respect for differences in the quilting/blogging community and even though two people might have completely different styles, they can still appreciate the other's work for the effort and aesthetic value. It is a beautiful community and I am proud to be part of it!

So: WIP Wednesday!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Guh. What a week it has been. I've been ticking around quietly due to a creeper of a cold, just something making me feel flu-y and gross, and motivation to do anything except watch TV and cuddle Piper has been noticably absent. I have been focusing on sewing little tasks, in preparation for lots of big tasks coming my way. So though I have been ambling along getting a few things done, for the most part I have laid very low.

This quilt inspired my bear claw quilt, Sophie Makes Tracks. But I'm a little more ambitious and my quilt is 9x9, or 81 blocks altogether. I've been sewing half-square triangles together and yesterday I spent the better part of day at my sewing machine, chain piecing while Piper slept and I caught up on Downton Abbey. (Anna! Bates! MATTHEW! WILLIAM! I cried. And then I cried some more. And I'm only halfway through season 2!)

chain piecing

Sew sew sew. 324 pairs. That is 648 half-square triangles now sewn into blocks and pressed that have to be squared off before becoming bear claws. It is the right thing to do but my wrist, oh my wrist!

I've had some reprieve from the bear claws though. I've been steadily working on my Garden Fence blocks!

garden fence

Sel and I have been trying to determine if we should line them up, or offset them. Either way it could be a really interesting effect!

And this week, I conquered binding. Making it right, and well, and even cutting it properly (on the angle) to join strips together. I was always too lazy before but the more I quilt the more fussy and "proper" I become.


So sweet, these Sugar Pop trees. (Or are they lollies? I always think trees.)

Here is half of the backing for Lolly Fields. I used almost all of my scraps and I'm really proud of how this strip turned out. This is a good use of a charm pack, for sure.

pieced backing

Yummy lolly fields!

I woke up this morning to take my husband to the station. He is spending a couple nights away for work and I am absolutely devastated. But my husband very kindly left me a present. He knows how much I love to sew, and how quilting has become not only my hobby but my passion, my obsession...and he knows how much I've been coveting a nice machine. I've really outgrown my trusty little Janome.

So my gift? My gift was amazing.

new new new

A Bernina 440 QE.

As you can imagine, I have been fluttering around it all afternoon. I can't believe how different it is! It's so quiet, and smooth, and confusing. I'm going to have to watch a lot of tutorials and pick my friends' brains but oh my goodness. A proper machine. This is the godfather of all sewing machines.

shiny and new


Finally, my littlest helper has been falling asleep at the machine lately. She'll fuss if I put her down for a nap but if I stick her in the Bumbo on my sewing table, within ten minutes she melts into this perfect puddle of sweet baby. I'm a mean mother and I let her sleep a few minutes like this so she's well asleep when I put her down for her nap. I just love this moment. All moments with her. Amazing.


So just quickly, the tally:

New projects

  • Garden fence quilt, 15/49 blocks


Ongoing projects

  • Sophie Makes Tracks (HSTs)
  • Lolly Fields (backed, batted, and I've started hand-quilting!)


Completed projects

  • None! Shocking. BLERG.


Ignored projects

  • (Un)Happy Camper Quilt (crying)
  • Downtown Dots (and it's so EASY)

So there you have it! A quiet but kind of great week! I can't wait for the Lolly Fields quilt to be finished and listed in my shop. Let me know what you're working on, and I'll see you for Fabric Friday!



part one of two, done!

Once upon a time, I used to be able to move an entire household in 48 hours. Clearly (when I wasn't looking, obviously), this changed. I know this because it took all day long to reorganize the house and build one bookshelf, and to be honest, it's still not done. I hear you gain weight after you get married and had kids but I didn't realize it meant I gained weight IN MY CLOSETS.

Oh! I sustained a war wound. My wrist is hugely swollen. Typing is painful. Cutting ingredients for dinner was not fun. And trying to help assemble a bookcase actually hurt so much I had to go away and feel a little sorry for myself. Yeah, I'm a sook.

But...I have a proper workspace. AT LAST! Just look at this beautiful fabric shelf!

new! shiny! wonderful!

I also de-stashed. There was so much fabric I bought when I started out quilting that just isn't my style anymore, stuff I love but I'll never use. If you're in the Sydney area and want some free fabric, LET ME KNOW. I'm taking it all to Fabric Cave next Monday so you've got a little over a week to have a go! Free to a good home. There's yardage and scraps, a whole rubbish bag full, so leave a comment and an email address if you're keen and we'll sort something out! Free free free. Can't get much better than that!

The workstation itself has a few kinks to work out. I'm not sold on the baskets, and the messes on top of the new shelf are works in progress (Sophie Makes Tracks, Peachy Keen, Lolly Fields) that need, well, finishing. Maybe tomorrow I can do some sewing!

New sewing area

It was a hard day for Piper as we were both trying to get everything done in between being reasonably good parents. She's very happy now to sit and play with toys, but she'll let out a very indignant squawk if she thinks we're not paying enough attention. (She usually demands eye contact every 2.67 seconds.) She finally went to sleep, kicking and screaming, at 9. I think it's a growth spurt. We picked a tough weekend to baby-proof!

waking up is hard to do.

We just have a few things left to do this weekend – take out the recycling & rubbishes, vacuum the whole house, take donation bin clothes away, organize furniture to be picked up by the council, sell a few big items, and of course, for me, SEW! I missed sewing today, and I felt like a total nerd, looking at my machine with longing as it was buried under a layer of moving flotsam. No more changing things around, at least not for a long while. Gah.

Oh the sleep I'm going to get tonight...must remember to ice my wrist! Poor wrist. Sorry to mistreat you. I'm glad I rotary cut all my Garden Fence blocks last week...whew! Imagine trying to do that with a wrapped up wrist!

Time for bed...and a nice long sleep...mmm can't wait! Toodles! x


Fabric Friday #8

What a week it has been! So many Big Things, so few of them concrete, but the possibilities are tantalizing nonetheless. I have felt like laughing and crying and running in a big circle all at once. Whew. Exhausting.

And, when I get overwhelmed, I seek order. I begin new projects, or reorganize the living room furniture, or evict the spider webs from the corners of the ceiling. This week was so big that I've decided to baby proof the living room. That initially meant a late night trip to Ikea, where we discovered that they had free delivery if we bought a certain amount of stuff between the hours of 5pm and 9pm.

Let that just sink in: FREE DELIVERY.

So this morning, still in our jimjams, the nice delivery man dropped off a bookcase for my fabric, and a brand new big-baby bed for Piper! See the restraint I exercised? See see? Ahh!

But it is Saturday here in semi-sunny Sydney so I'd better get on with the fabric part of Fabric Friday!

My mother-in-law (RaRa) and I went to Craft Depot this week and I picked up some more Meadowsweet in the warm and cool colorways (the two on the right). Then I got another might be my favorite color yet (middle)! Finally, a few more pieces of Sugar Pop to make the pieced backing for Lolly Fields.

Fabric Friday

I've been seeing Etchings pop up in stores and I love the blue-grey and the old style maps. What a great travel case this fabric could make! I also grabbed some Iced Peach Kona solid and a blue/green star fabric I'd been coveting. I've made it a commitment to pick up some crosshatch whenever I have a spare dime, because it's such a nice, modern blender. And finally, a discount fabric I just love that will make a beautiful backing!

Fabric Friday

I was given a stack of fabric from a friend this week. She had the teddy bears to make something for her daughter, but her little girl is now, um, thirty, so she passed it on to me! Also in this stack is a gold mine: some Liberty fabric! I'm guessing some of that is vintage. It's so incredibly silky; you can see the nice sheen in the pictures. I'm not a huge fan of florals but these are just gorgeous. What a nice summer blanket they could make!

Liberty Lawn

Finally, in light of my Garden Fence quilt, I completed the fabrics by grabbing this Kaffe Fassett and the beautiful yellow with it. I've always regarded Kaffe Fassett as being too busy and splashy for my usual tastes, but for this quilt, which is so sensibly framed with white sashing, it just goes beautifully. I might be a late convert!

Kaffe & Yellow

Also, that yellow? I love it. I want a million posh bathrobes made out of this. Or! This in a voile, in a swishy superfull summer skirt. It is just bright and beautiful.

So! Progress has been made on my bear claws. They are taking forever because I am meticulously squaring up each HST square and then each block, as I go. I've never been that fussy before but I love the fabric so much that I am learning that doing the job well is being respectful to the fabric!

Bear Claws

I haven't gotten as much done on my mother's quilt as I'd like, but picking up the Kona Iced Peach helped. I can't believe I chose this without having a reference swatch. It matches so well! I remember once when I was very small my mother telling me her favorite color was "peach". I hope this is close!

Tulip matching

The other night, with the incentive of six new episodes of Community hanging over my head, I decided to cut out ALL the blocks for the Garden Fence quilt. This is an idea of the fabric I'm using.

Garden Fence

That is eight hundred pieces of fabric. And I still have sashing between the blocks to do! I'm running out of Kona Snow so I need to order some more but I have enough to do the blocks. They are surprisingly easy to sew and they look so nice when finished!

Garden Fence

(This one is crumpled from spending the day in my handbag, being shown off at the café!)

So that's Fabric Friday. I'll try and remember to post some before & afters of the house as we rearrange but since it usually takes an act of Congress to get my husband in a good enough mood, I might be forbidden from photogging!


this is the life.

Well. I spend a lot of time in my favorite café, but I promise, it's productive. I take things I, um, might or might not have purchased this afternoon, and I turn them into projects!


Aside from the Sugar Pop, which is going toward the Lolly Fields quilt backing, the new fabrics are for a Garden Fence quilt. I've been stash-building toward something bright, splashy, and sashed in white. (Or Kona Snow. You know how much I love Kona Snow.) Then a couple of days ago I repinned this picture and it has been percolating since.

Source: via Penny on Pinterest


Tonight, in the middle of sewing my bear claws (4 down, 77 to go) I began wildly pulling all my brights out of my stash. Fabric flew everywhere! Mr Poppleton was consulted. (And overruled. Sorry, honey.) I took a this and a that and a whatsie and a hoodle and came up with this!

My helper

Some Loulouthi, some Meadowsweet, some random Michael Miller, a Kaffe Fasset, and a random I found today while I was attempting to sign up for a quilting class. (I am GOING to do a class in the new year.)

So! I have six new episodes of Community, thanks to my gorgeous friend Kate, a tall glass of ice-cold water, and my schmick new rotary cutter. I'm going to cut this quilt top out tonight! WOO. This is the life.

Time to get my feet moving!


WIP Wednesday #5

It's that time again! WIP Wednesday! Yay!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

I like WIP Wednesday very much. See, I'm one of those really awful Type As. The kind who turn up half an hour early to everything so they have to sit in their car until it's actually time to go in.* The kind who, in their last semester of uni, wrote their assessments in their diary as being due a week earlier than they actually were just so it would be all over with faster.** I love accountability and I love having goals! So WIP Wednesday and I are BFFs.

All right! Let's get down and dirty:

New Projects:

None! I have enough going on! But I WANT to make a scrap quilt...more on that soon...and I started cutting out some brown and pink HSTs at SCQuilters the other we shall see. But nothing concrete.

Ongoing Projects:

Sophie Makes Tracks. I had a great night at Pinky's the other night with her enormous cutting mat (we were both using it at the same time...thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's cutting mat, thou shalt not covet thy neighbor's cutting mat...) and I got ALL my fat quarters cut into five claw's worth. Then I started on the petal fabric. I'm still trying to get those finished. Then I get to make them, all 81 claws!

Sophie makes tracks

It's going to be SO AWESOME.

Completed Projects:

I finished the 241 Tote! Oh my goodness. It's so handy! It's a great size for kicking around and it fits my (husband's) iPad perfectly!

Totey McToteness

I lined it with Sherbert Pips and whenever I dig out my wallet to get a fantastic mocha (thanks Joel) I smile. Best.

241 Tote

I also finished the Lolly Fields quilt top. It looks so sweet! I can't wait to piece the back. I have just been distracted with other things!

Lolly Fields Quilt

And, finally, I finished ------. That's right. I can't tell you because it is a SECRET. But! I will show you the super sweet fabric I used!


Bock bock bock! Chooks!

No Progress:

I took my sisters' quilts in to be machine quilted and, uh, the lady has already closed her books for the year! Either I hand-quilt them (urgh, summertime, nooooo) or I wait until January. That's it. I'm waiting until January. (Sorry, girls!)

Also no progress has been made on my (Un)Happy Campers quilt top...

(Un)Happy Camper

...or my Downtown Dots quilt top.

Downtown dots

I have been distracted by Sophie Makes Tracks. (Soooo...shiiiny...)

And, last but not least, I succumbed to the lure of buying a decent rotary cutter. I've been suffering through cheap ones but last week I had just HAD it, so I got an Olfa. And then I got rid of my insanely rubbish thread snips and got new orange ones today.

Tools are good.

I love these things because they WORK. Good tools, am I right?

And I went sewing machine shopping, but I haven't committed to anything just yet. (Well, my heart has, but my wallet has other ideas.) So there you go!

I have a huge weekend coming up and tomorrow is my planning day...I hope this humidity and heat don't last! I'm melting here...melting...ahhh...

Enjoy WIP Wednesday!




*Having a baby has leveled the playing field somewhat. I'm still usually early-to-on-time. It's sickening.
**I may have actually in real life done this...except in one class I was done FOUR weeks ahead of everyone else. My beach tan that year? Was awesome.



sunday night plan #6

Oh man. I've been feeling the urge lately. The moving urge. I come by it honestly: my mother, every few months, would systematically rearrange the furniture to make it feel fresh and new. I did the same in my bedroom and then in my first few apartments. I like moving house because it's a great opportunity to shed the unnecessary things and move forward with a fresher, simpler outlook. Or so the theory goes!

Anyway, I've been struggling with where my sewing desk is because it's in the part of the living room furthest from the windows. My fabric shelving was blocking any light I could get. So we swapped them around! Of course this happened at 10pm so we'll see how the new configuration goes tomorrow. At any rate, we're going to spring for an Expedit bookcase (this one, on its side) so even when Piper gets mobile, she can't pull it down on her head. Winning!

This week I am keeping the planning simple.

Sewing projects:

x Happy Camper quilt top
x Mom's quilt top
x Downtown dots quilt top
x Lolly Fields quilt back


x Plan the HST quilt
x Sunniest Day quilt


x Any. I'm doing terribly at NaNo this year! It's shameful. (But I'm back to writing every day!)

Well, I'm running scant on five hours' sleep--NOT the baby's fault, but a bout of insomnia! I'm yawning like crazy so I'm going to seize the moment and head to bed. Night all!


the dulcet tones of...

...Bon Iver carries me through my Saturday night. By the way, "Perth" is my favorite song on that album. Not my favorite song ever. My favorite song ever is "Love Song" by The Cure. And my second favorite song is "Dramamine" by Modest Mouse. But maybe "Perth" is third. I just love it so much.

I have been sewing. My disappearing 9-patch became a quaint little cot quilt, titled Lolly Fields. Piper, before she got too tired, helped me organize my squared-off blocks. What a love.

Helping Momma

After a lot of sewing, I have a finished quilt top! It's a little wibbly. All my on-point quilt tops are wibbly. Quilters, any suggestions? I love this look but I'm frustrated with the stretchy factor. Argh. Anyway, it's cute!

Lolly Fields Quilt

Lolly Fields Quilt

I especially love the effect of the white against the bright colors...but the borders have to be my favorite. How can a skinny border/fat border combo ever go wrong? I think never!

Lolly Fields Quilt

And now that I've finished a quilt top, it's time to spend an embarrassing amount of time catching up on my writing. Let's not even talk about how far behind I am. Why is it that whenever I have a sewing deadline, all I want to do is write...and whenever I have a writing deadline, I am suddenly inspired to sew? I usually just go with it, but this month has been difficult!

Oh, before I go, there have been a few issues with subscriptions. The advice of my senior tech support officer (aka Mr Poppleton) was to ask everyone who has subscribed to delete their subscription and add it again. That should fix it, and if not, let me know in the comments!

Cheers and see you tomorrow for the week's plan!


Fabric Friday #7

...or should I say, FABULOUS Friday? Because today was GREAT. Today I signed up for a gym membership and as soon as Piper was safely ensconsed with Mr Poppleton at home, I dashed off for some quality treadmill time. Oh my gosh. Did I mention how much I missed running? I was going to take it slow, but my feet got bored, and so I ran for a kilometer! It was pretty tough and boy, my dark meat is burned but dang. I feel GOOD. It doesn't hurt that I got to spend some time alone, either! I feel renewed, in more ways than one.

As promised, I have been "No Buy Novembering" but I decided to amend it to "No-STASH November". I do have a lot of stash to work from, it's true, but there are times when you pick out four fabrics and still need a little something-something. This happened on Thursday when I decided to start my mother's quilt. I've been kicking around with the idea of roses for a while, considering buying a layer cake, hemming and hawing, when I finally just dug out my pink roses from, er, a couple of years ago. And I had enough. (I was worried I wouldn't have enough.) But the truth was, it wasn't strong enough on its own. It needed some help. So I picked up a strong maroon and a nice woodsy green, both of which are perfect. We're ready to roll now.

Rose Garden

flower block

Then, THEN! I was happily sewing and slicing my Sugar Pop charm squares (using a Kona Snow charm pack as well, natch) when I realized that the quilt I was working on wouldn't respond well to white setting triangles. I needed yardage. Sugar Pop is an older range and even though I know of one place that has lots, this was at three-thirty on a Thursday and I knew I'd never make it to Alexandria on time. So I gambled and went to Cottage Quiltworks, and, WHEW! They had some yardage!

Sugar Pop

Now, tomorrow is Southern Cross Quilters and I'll be there with bells on – after I head up to Craft Depot to buy myself a rotary cutter. I'm tired of cheap, crappy tools. I'll go Olfa or Clover or I'll GO HOME. (Or to another shop to buy an Olfa or a Clover cutter probably.) But the dedication! The dedication is what counts! As you can see, I have a lot of squaring up of blocks to do, and as you can see from my quilt plan here, I've got four flying geese borders to make. Whoa.


And that's it for Fabric Friday! I'm looking forward to tomorrow: should be busy but rewarding. I love seeing other women's work and the love and care for the craft of quilting. And by the end of the day I hope to have my blocks squared and at least one quilt top done!

I'll leave you with this: the way the sun looked coming through the trees when I came home from the gym. Totally beautiful.