just quick!

Started two new quilts.

A cot quilt, set on point, made with a forgotten Sugar Pop charm square set from whenever. June maybe? Who knows. So sweet and cute!

Sugar pop!

Very unfinished though. Tomorrow: cutting out the setting triangles and sorting the borders and the backing. Should be fun!

Quilt #2: a quilt for my mother, which a) has roses and b) is more traditional. I chose a tulip block from the ever fabulous Quilters' Cache and pulled the rose fabric out of my stash. I ran up to Cottage Quiltworks for matching maroon and green fabric and dug some creamy homespun out of my rainbow of solids. Hooray for utilizing my exisiting fabric first! Anyway this is the block.

Rose tulips

And now, word count for today: 3980. SHOCKING. Terrible. I'm spending tomorrow morning in the café writing with my headphones on. If I don't get to 7000 tomorrow I'm going to have to stay up late. I mean later. Or maybe take my sewing machine in to be serviced so I won't be tempted to sew when I should be WRITING.

Also, ALSO! Tomorrow, I plan on walking to the gym and signing myself up! I've got a three month old baby and I'm starting to feel really ready to shed some baby weight and get pretty for summer! I know I've left it a bit late, but hey, better late than never! Plus, one word: sundresses. There. Sold.


WIP Wednesday #4

Oh my. I can't believe it's WIP Wednesday already! But I have been busy sewing, which is AWESOME. As I mentioned in yesterday's post, I had Sel and Claire over to quilt on Monday, and it gave me the boost I needed to start a new project and finish an ongoing one, but I'll talk about that in a second!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

Firstly, in NaNoWriMo news, I haven't written yet today, so I have no word count. Boo. I'll get right on my 2,000 per day goal as soon as I'm done blogging!

New Projects: Bear Tracks quilt, tentatively called "Sophie's Tracks". I am excited to get started on this. I can't decide if this is a quilt for anyone in particular. All I know is, I love this fabric and I'm stoked to combine Sophie with bear tracks!

Sophie's Tracks Quilt

Ongoing Projects: 241 Tote. I've really been dragging my feet on this, but I did manage to sew the pockets onto the side panels and get the inside complete. I'm annoyed that I haven't been able to finish it.

241 Tote

Completed Projects: Birds' Nests quilt! I half-machine and half-handquilted it and finished up the binding this morning. I was able to wash it, dry it, and give it to Ellen and Joel and baby Olive this afternoon! I love making pretty quilts for babies, especially one as sweet as Olive!

Birds' Nests Quilt

Birds' Nests Quilt

No Progress: Walk in the Woods quilt, and Ultraviolet quilt. Basically, I need to gather my courage and take them to be machine-quilted. So they sit, neglected, in a pile. Also no progress on the Happy Camper quilt, though I did buy some fabric for sashing!


I'm dying to get stuck into the Sophie quilt but I want to make sure my blocks are perfect, so I plan to cut them and sew them slowly! But I have lots more quilts hovering around in my head, just waiting to be drawn, cut out, and pieced! The best kind of inspiration.

I'll be back with a word count! Happy writing & sewing!


NaNoWriMo Day 1

Word count: 3252

My favorite sentence: "The prints were blood-red but sparkled richly; when I dropped my fingertips to the liquid, it was viscous and stuck to my hands, burning the skin."

Ugh. I feel tired. It's been a long day.

On the way into the writing event, there was a car accident near the Burwood shops. A motorcyclist had been knocked off his bike, which was in pieces. A red car with the bumper hanging off was parked in the lane in front of the crumpled motorcycle. A man in shorts was sitting on the curb, his head in his hands, and a crowd of people surrounded the motorcyclist. His helmet was cracked; I drove within three feet of him. There was no blood, and the police got there as I was driving by, but it colored my whole day. For that guy, that particular intersection will always be the place he was knocked off his bike. He was alive, and moving, and it could have been so much worse.

I was there for maybe 45 seconds total, but it was as if it happened in slow motion, and I was crying before I even knew it. Wherever you are, motorcycle guy, I hope you're okay. I'm thinking of you today.

On to happier topics. Last night I had some great quilting company: Sel and Claire came over to sit and sew! It was wonderful. Mr Poppleton took Piper for a good hour and a half and it really rejuvenated me to have adult time without the baby. (I love the baby, but I do see her all the time.)

I have been wanting to make a Bear Tracks quilt for a few weeks, but I was unsure what fabrics to use and how to use them. Claire and Sel helped me become brave enough to open my Sophie FQS and decide what to do! I am usually forcing poor Mr Poppleton to play "quilter's helper", holding up fabric and asking, "What do you think about this? Or is this one better?" (much to his, er, disinterest), so it was AWESOME to be able to ask other quilters! And my quilt was planned lickedy-split.

Sophie Fabric

The small colorful prints will be the paw; the white with patterned blue petals will be the relief of the claw blocks; the red with white and green petals will be the skinny border, and the white with large floral prints on the far right will be the big outer border! Now i just have to sort out what colors go where.

I even had time to make up a block with the extra small prints we decided were too pale to use in the quilt.

Bear Claw

See how the print is the paw and the petals are the relief? That's how the whole thing will go, only with blue petals as relief and all the different prints. I'm very excited to see it. It looks so good here!

Mr Poppleton "helped" me with the block. He is ever so obliging!

simon's bear claw

At 6pm it became "No-Buy November"*, so I had to run errands quickly after the writing event in order to get the fabric I need for my Sophie quilt. Today was the first day of the fantastic Craft Depot November sale (a sale I will be VERY SAD to miss) so Sel and I dashed up to Pennant Hills to check out the fabrics. I found some pretty basics for $7.95 a meter and got the rest of the Sophie yardage I needed for the quilt. I'm not buying any more fabric for November, and I'm even secretly hoping I can make it to the new year! I have a trip to the States coming up in February so I've got to save my pennies so I can fabric shop with my beautiful Sarah!

Today's haul.

Today's haul.

Don't you just love that blue, pink, and brown? The brown and the pink match one of the fabrics I bought yesterday at Material Obsession...I've had my eye on this one for a while! (It's the fourth from the left, in case you were wondering.)


I've been eyeing that turquoise Lou Lou Thi for awhile and was happy to pick up the pink too.I'm on a real crosshatch kick as well; it's such a great modern blender. I've also been following Sel's lead and picking up Reece Scannell cottons whenever I'm at Material Obsession. They are just so vibrant and beautiful! This time I got light pink and light blue.

Tonight I managed to finish the Bear Tracks practice block.


I really like the way it looks, and it's satisfyingly LARGE (between 14 and 15 inches I think, I haven't really measured it). I just need to organize the colors and then away I'll go: snip snip and sew sew!

So, today was a big day. I wrote a thousand words while wrangling a squirming, squawking baby. I said a prayer for a stranger in a car accident. I planned and began executing a quilt with my favorite fabric range ever. I even got to take a little nap. I'm hoping tomorrow is calmer. I want to bang out another two or three thousand words in the café in the morning, then spend the afternoon sewing blocks and playing with Piper. Here's hoping it is nice and cruisy without any car accidents! Drive safe, world.

*As in 1 November, Pacific Standard Time. With the last-minute decision to make that Sophie quilt, I didn't have enough yardage for the border so I thought it would be a little bit okay to bend the rules! I'm done now, I swear.


it begins!

National Novel Writing Month (commonly referred to as "NaNoWriMo" has begun! I am going to be spending the next month talking about WRITING, as I have 50,000 words to finish in the space of thirty days! Add in a couple of quilts, a 3-month old child who has recently discovered whingeing, and a fondness for sleep and you have a recipe for an ACTUAL CHALLENGE. I'll keep you all posted on how I go, but I do apologize in advance if I miss WIP Wednesdays, Fabric Fridays, Sunday Planning nights, or posts on sewing in general. It's November! November is for WRITING.

You can find me here, you can learn about NaNoWriMo here, and you can donate here.

Word count for the day: 2195


Fabric Friday #6

No-Buy October, I'm glad you were a dismal, dismal failure. I spent 17 days yearning for pretty fabric, and now that I have broken (so hard), I appreciate my purchases so much more! This is good, because No-Buy November is juuuust around the corner.

(Don't look at me like that. I swear, no buying fabric! FOR REALZ.)

This week I picked up the last of the Christmas present fabric, some Kona solids, and a few stash-building basics...and some Japanese linen/cotton blends arrived in the post from Kelani!

Fabric Friday

I love the the riotous color!

I found some of the new Plume range at Hobbysew and promptly got half a meter for me and half a meter for a friend.

Fabric Friday

(I love the gilding.)

Kona I love you! I can never go past a good-feeling solid and Kona feels the best. This week I picked up the last of a bolt of Kona Snow, which is my favorite white EVER. (It's on my Christmas list...Mr Poppleton has strict instructions!) I also picked up some Dusty Blue and Turquoise.

Fabric Friday

It looks like the sea and the sky, doesn't it?

Here are the last of my linen/cotton blends. I am already stoked to make Christmas presents for my friends and family!

Fabric Friday

Which one's your favorite? Mine is probably still the viewfinders, but that turquoise is making me exceedingly happy.

Here are some splashy colors for the week. I have been eyeing off the grey and pink, the dotty trees, and the bright vines for AGES and finally I broke down and got them. The yellow leapt out at me, too: a summer dress for Piper, perhaps? And the grey stripes just looked like a refreshing, cool addition to a pile of warm tones.

Fabric Friday

Mmm. Fabric.

While picking up more cross-hatch (it makes such a perfect blender while still looking fresh and contemporary), the very helpful woman at Craft Depot showed me the matching dot. OH MY GOODNESS.

Timeless Treasures

Also, yes, I am addicted to blues.

Oh! A few last minute additions to my stash: a gorgeously bright directional/floral, some 1930s, and some more Sophie...ILU Sophie!

Fabric Friday


And, finally, the best thing I've seen all week...the look I get when Miss Piper wakes up from a nap. Check out that smile! Man I love this age. :)


Tomorrow is mine and Elle's Halloween Party so I'll be sure to post some pictures! Have a great weekend everyone!



WIP Wednesday #3

My goodness. This is going to be a very quick and dirty WIP Wednesday because, a) it's actually Thursday, and b) I haven't even started the costumes for my Hallowe'en party and it is in TWO DAYS. So: YIKES.

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

I only have two measly completed projects this week, the car seat quilt...

Car Seat Quilt


...and the Birds' Nests quilt top.

Birds' Nests

I feel so lazy. It's the worst. I've been really slack this week, even though I love sewing, because these Hallowe'en projects have just been looming. LOOMING.

So here's the tally.

New Projects:

x Hallowe'en costumes
x New color quilt (still in sketch mode!)
x Quilt plan for my Mama's birthday quilt

Ongoing Projects:

x Birds' Nests Quilt
x 241 Tote
x Christmas present list
x A Walk in the Woods quilt top yo-yoed

Finished Projects:

x Carseat Quilt (it needs a better name!)

No Progress:

x Ultraviolet quilted
x Downtown dots quilt
x Happy Camper quilt

So there you have it. I'm slack. I can't wait for inspiration to return...until then, however, I'll be moping around watching Life on Mars, trying to decide which kind of cupcakes to make for Saturday. Blah. Blah to me lack of inspiration!

Just to keep me inspired...




Oh man, I LOVE getting stuff done. I do. I love it when I snip the last thread of a quilt and then chuck it in the washing machine. I love changing the bobbin on my machine to a new color thread. I love putting the vacuum cleaner back in the cupboard, or the laundry baskets, empty, on top of the dryer.

So today was an excellent day.

Exhibit A: Piper will sleep if she is very warm. In the car, it is essential that she sleeps (because the alternative to sleeping in the car is screaming in the car). Normal quilts are too big, and a muslin wrap is too tangly. What she needed was a little lap quilt to cover her up but not overwhelm her. After deciding to whip out my large KaleidoRuler, this mini-quilt was born!

Car Seat Quilt

It's so cute. And it's just perfect for the car...and of course I finished it on the first hot week of the season! So long, winter. You've been kicked out. Spring is here, with a vengeance.

Exhibit B: The #1 increase in chores since I became a mother is laundry. Lauuuundry. My arch-nemesis. My best friend told me yonks ago that she dislikes folding laundry, and I scoffed at her. "I love doing laundry," I said. "Washing, drying, folding, it's all great! I just hate doing the dishes." I'm sorry for scoffing, Sar. Truly, madly sorry. Because I get it now. KIDS GENERATE LAUNDRY. How, I ask, HOW, can one tiny baby who has tiny clothes suddenly make my life full of TWO LOADS A DAY?


Anyway I did some laundry. It's not folded, but, I'll do it after I finish blogging.


Exhibit C: Hand-quilting has begun on the Birds' Nest quilt. I plan to machine-quilt in big Xes across the top, but hand-quilting in the minty-blue squares makes me so happy! I am doing lassos here, but I might do big flowers in the other squares, or geometric shapes. Who knows? I'll make it up as I go along, me and my Clover removable ink pen.


And, finally, not a finished project by ANY means, but certainly my best creation. Today she played quietly with her new cube toy for an entire hour! I couldn't tear her away and began to get quite jealous...a feat for me as I am usually impatient for naptime so I can work!


As soon as she was done playing, though, I got such beautiful smiles. I live for these smiles, and I'm so glad she's finally of the smiling age.

Definitely my kid.

She has two dimples on the right side and none on the left, and her eyes are definitely going to be blue or grey...not brown like mine. I was hoping for brown, but now I can't imagine her eyes any other way. Such a sweetie. I love her good temperament and her sense of humor and her hilarious and cavelier disregard for what happens when she tips herself from her tummy to her side. (A surprise every time.) I'm so lucky. Well, I'm going to go dote over her while she sleeps, and then fold some laundry. Tomorrow: Spotlight for more thread for the Birds' Nests quilt, a pattern for my Hallowe'en dress, and some quality time with my book. I can't wait!


sunday night plan #5

It's the weekend before my Hallowe'en shindig, so Mr Poppleton and I went in search of costume supplies today. We woke up at eight, courtesy of Piper, who gets exactly 12 hours of sleep each night, no more, no less. (She wakes me up by being so darn cute I can't help but pry my red-rimmed, late-night-up-sewing eyes right open just to look at her. I love my life.) So we got an early Sunday morning start to our costume hunting!

We talked it out over breakfast at Kazbah (which was amazing). We'd been toying with ideas for a while: me as Dorothy, Piper as Toto, Mr Poppleton as Obi-Wan Kenobi...but we couldn't settle on anything. Then I remembered when I was fifteen, I was on a field trip, digging through some costumes backstage and I found a tree costume! A green shawl for the head, a really simple trunk, and voila!  Mr Poppleton, on the other hand, decided to go as CSI. And Piper? I bought a meter of blue it looks like I'll have a very tiny Dorothy!

Anyway, it's Sunday, and my house is tidy, my baby is sleeping, my darling husband is busy watching's time to plan!

Sewing projects:

x Tree costume - dyeing shawl, attaching leaves, sewing trunk
x Dorothy costume - making pinafore and ruby red slippers
x Finishing Birds' Nest quilt
x Fabric yo-yos for J3's quilt
x Bat, back, baste J3's quilt (oh yes, I finished the top!)
x Spring Blossom quilt top backed, batted, basted

Writing projects:

x Plan for NaNoWriMo
x Write every day

Home projects:

x DVD to computer project

So: I do have a lot to do this week. I'm going to try and sew a LOT tomorrow, and at least get the costumes finished by Wednesday, so I can bake guilt-free on Thursday and Friday. I'm just making a lot of delicious junk food for the party and making some punch!

Meanwhile I started an entirely new quilt last night and finished the top! It's so bright and sweet. It's for a little friend of Piper's. Here's a sneak peek.

Birds' Nests

Don't you just love that minty blue?

Sneaky me, I had to include a little bit of hand-stitching. I have a hard time with writing evenly when writing large, despite having beautiful handwriting...chalkboards and quilt blocks have always been tough for me! Thank goodness for removable fabric marking pens!


Despite being busy, it was a lazy-feeling weekend. We spent plenty of time at the café, cuddled the baby lots, and even made time to visit the Parents. (Well, we do that every weekend. We're good kids.) Piper was a bit overwhelmed and whingey, but Nanna got to hold her when she was on slightly better behavior – taking a much-needed nap.

Piper & Nanna

Precious thing. She just hates going to sleep, but she does need her micronaps!

Also up for this week, just in case I get really lucky and have the time, is beginning my Sophie quilt. I picked up some more Kona Snow (I really should just buy a bolt) and I have an idea percolating. So once my costume is done, and the Birds' Nests quilt is finished...onward, quilt!

And, finally...a big hello to everyone who has come to visit this blog over the past few weeks! Some are from the Modern Quilt Guild, and others from Freshly Pieced, but wherever you came from, thanks for stopping by!

All right, off to bed...time to catch up on last night's missed sleep (and read more of my book). Here's hoping for a busy, productive week for all!


Fabric Friday #5

Wow, I can't believe it's Fabric Friday #5! (Or, actually, Saturday...yikes!)

I have to confess something. I know it's No-Buy October, but...I broke. I broke SO HARD. It should not come as a surprise that I broke, as I am clearly addicted to purchasing fabric, lovely fabric, precious fabric...wait, I'm off topic. Anyway: I am rubbish at willpower. And I have new fabric! Yay?

Patterned whites

I've been conscious of my stash not having a lot of patterned whites, so I've picked these up. They have a lot of corresponding colors to my existing stash, plus, they're pretty!

Then I stumbled upon some linen/cotton blends. Oh my...I can sense some Christmas projects approaching!

Echino Linen/Cotton blends

I ordered some Echino solids to match, and I'm just waiting for them to turn up in my mailbox! I can't wait to begin working on [secret secret secret].

And now, some blues.


Beautiful, especially the Botany piece on the bottom. I love that spray of coral against the pale aqua!

For projects this week, I'm still plugging away at J3's quilt top ("A Walk in the Woods"). I tried appliquéd leaves and I hated them (!) so I'm sticking with fabric yo-yos. I took my quilt tops over to my in-laws' on Friday and my father-in-law helped hold them up against a wall so I could photograph them! This is my favorite picture of the bunch.

Ultraviolet Quilt

That's J5's quilt sandwich. It just needs to be hand-quilted!

Today was the first meeting of the Sydney Modern Quilt Guild and even though I was an hour late I had a great time. It was a good decision to put myself out there and commit to joining groups this year, especially with the newest addition to our family. I have a few thoughts on why I love quilters' groups so much, but I'll save those for another post. Suffice to say, despite my group-shyness, I enjoyed meeting other local ladies who love the craft. It was nice to not be the youngest in the room, too!

I'll leave you with this picture of Piper cuddling Olive. I love how intent Olive is on finding her mum, and how Piper is all business: "Right, Other Baby, look at me!" They are holding hands and it is so sweet. (And thank you Aunt Sarah for the pink romper!)

Piper & Olive

Until tomorrow!


WIP Wednesday #2

I had a surprisingly productive week! Piper is getting big enough to sit in her Bumbo and "play" with Mr Stripes (she throws him on the floor, whinges, I pick him up, tsk at her, etc) while I sew or iron or cut long strips to make borders. So, despite a rocky start to the week, dragging my sore, illness-wracked frame around, I feel pretty great.

I have to apologize for the photos this week. I had every intention of going to my in-laws today to take photos of my quilt tops in their beautiful garden, but we were all three all over the place! So please forgive my yellow living room photos and bear with me!

So, WIP Wednesday, let's get the kettle on the boil!

WIP Wednesday at Freshly Pieced

New Projects:

I finished the Go Anywhere Bag last week and I love it so much! It's so bright and colorful, and since me and my leaky self are stuck wearing black for the time being, it cheers me up to carry around something so bright and sweet. So I've started the 241 Tote, also from Anna at Noodlehead. I'm using Ruby Star Rising radios and Echino Spots for this one, with a sweet lining of Sherbert Pips scooters in blue.

241 Tote

I've also started planning the carseat quilt I'm making for Piper. I'm using the circular form from a kaleidoscope quilt and I'll round out the edges with binding. I'm just working out colorways. I'll be excited for Piper to have warm little tootsies during car rides!

Ongoing Projects:

Both A Walk in the Woods and Ultraviolet quilt tops were finished this week (hurrah!), but only Ultraviolet got a batting/backing. I love the pop of red in this quilt and I can't wait to get stuck into hand-quilting!

Ultraviolet quilt

A Walk in the Woods needs a few more finishing touches before I bat and back it, namely these sweet little fabric yo-yos.

Cup of Yo-Yos

I love the way the quilt looks though, and I wish I had a good enough picture of it all spread out. It's enormous (96"square, and that was with a REDUCTION in size) so you'll just have to be content with a corner.

A Walk in the Woods

Finished Projects:

I made a dress for Baby Olive! I am making her another one, to match Piper (because they are going to be best friends!) and a quilt that is Olive-specific, so I've got a few more projects to get stuck into before I wrap it up and deliver it to Ellen & Joel. I'm so stoked to be making them a girl-specific gift set, and it's even more challenging because I am trying to avoid pink! So hard for me. I love pink.

Olive's Dress

No Progress:

I do not want to talk about the Happy Camper squares that are from JUNE that I haven't even sashed yet. Seriously. Denial!


For the rest of the week, I plan to spend a bit of time hand-sewing. I've also begun mulling over Christmas present ideas, especially for my sisters who aren't getting quilts this year. (Sorry J2 and J4! I have ideas but no tiiiiiime!) I still want to do mainly handmade, so we'll see how we go. I'm really excited though. Giving presents is one of my favorite things in the world!

I'll leave you with a picture of my new sewing-stuff pouch. I like to cram all my bits and pieces in this little zip pounch and stick it in my handbag, so I always know I've got something to do with my hands! It's such a sweet little bag.

Sew what?

I hope you all enjoy your WIP Wednesday and I'll catch you next time!