Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Stash diet failed!

For a very long time I have wanted to make a quilt related to the sea. It was impossible to resist when I came across these two fabrics from Keepsake Quilting! Stash diet failed! I have collected a few other fabrics related to the sea too, and I have a slight idea how the quilt is going to look like. I won't say this is going to be my next project - what about the WIP's???

Monday, March 30, 2009

Stash diet - impossible?!

Is it really possible to be on "stash diet" for more than a short time? I don't think so! Last year I bought quite some yards of fabric from the US, as suitable cotton fabric for quilting aren't that available here. I have a large selection, but of course never the right shade! Isn't it always like that?! Never the right shade!!! :-) I don't know how many times hubby has asked me the following question; "what on earth are you going to do with all that fabric?!" I try answering the best I can; "you know - it's so important to have the right shade"! Where he shakes his head and leaves my "cave"! The truth is; I never have the right shade, which means I often buy THE right shade of fabric - when I need it!!! :-) Hubby says it's a typical "female brain" - is it??? Scientifically shown; females are gatherers - males are hunters! We should be proud of being gatheres - shouldn't we?! :-)
Recently Pam Bono Designs had sale on Robert Kaufman Artisan Blue Batik, to $6.95/yard. How on earth could I resist?! I love batiks - especially blue, and ended up buying 3 yards! Don't ask me what I'm going to make out of it - I just had to have it!!! You can see it on the photo above. Isn't it gorgeous?!
As mentioned in an earlier post I ran out of fabric for Johnny's bed cover... It's the green one to the right. Again I couldn't resist and bought Debbie Mumm's "Friendship Quilt Collection" book too - from Debbie Mumm Quilters. And as you can see I got the latest edition of the Australian magazine "Handmade" too! It was like Christmas Eve when hubby came back from the post office!
The next day was great too; I received two books I had ordered. In an earlier post I have mentioned the mini quilt my friend Kari made to me in a technique called "faux chenille". I became curious on how the technique is done - that's why the book; "Simple Chenille Quilts" by Amy Whalen Helmkamp. In her book she combines faux chenille and raw-edge patchwork to make such cuddly quilts. What I didn't realize is the number of yards required for a quilt - because it is made of 3-4 - or even more - layers of fabric.
The other book I bought is "Fun With One Block Quilts" by Cheryl Malkowski.
Yeah - I'm a gatherer! :-)

Monday, March 23, 2009

What is he up to now?!

I know! I know! There are a few months since Christmas, but I just wanted to share this photo with you. It was taken before Christmas last year - I had just received the Christmas edition of Australian Patchwork and Quilting. As you can see it seems Birre-liten is up to something - doesn't it?! :-)

Baby quilt finished!

As I mentioned in my previous posting today I haven't felt very well the last days. I want to do some sewing, but I'm still feeling too weak for doing much. In between heat- and cold waves I've done a little bit needlepoint as well as finishing the baby quilt! Hurray! :-) As you can see I have tied this one too. I intended to use silk ribbon, but had a hard time getting the needle and ribbon through the 3 layers so I gave up.... Instead I've used yellow- and pink pearl cotton for the tying.

The change of season...

The famous red-roofed church Notre Dame Auxiliatrice.

Cap Malheureux - the most northernly point of the Mauritian mainland. It was named the "Cape of Misfortune" for the numbers of ships that were wrecked along this stretch of coast over the years. It was also here the British fleet landed on November 6th 1810 to take formal possession of Mauritius after the French.

Old shop - stone building - at Cap Malheureaux.

Gris Gris (can be translated to "black magic") beach at the southern part of the island. Does a dip in the water look tempting? Don't try - the ocean is fury here, and sign telling "dangerous bathing" is put up. Strange to imagine the nearest neighbor south is the Antarctic! Needless to say it feels cold when the wind blows from the south!
There has been some days since my last posting, and the reason is; the FLU! OH JOY! I'm quite sure it has to do with the change of season; we're entering the beginning of "winter" these days, but still there are no cooler days yet. Of course the "winter" can't be compared to a winter with minus degrees and snow, but still it does feel chilly at times. Mauritians say there are two seasons; summer and "winter". The summer lasts from approx October to end of March and "winter" from April to end of September. Coastal temperatures range between +25C (77F) and +34C (93F) in summer and between +18C (64F) and +24C (75F) in "winter". On the plateau it will be some 5 degrees cooler, which perfectly suits a Norwegian! :-) July & August are the coolest months when the temperature may drop to +8C (46F) at certain places on the plateau. We are at the end of cyclone season too, which usually ends at the end of March. Fortunate we haven't been hit by any cyclones this seasons, but a few have given us some needed rain.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Hexagon challenge before August 2009!

My penfriend Jocelyn in New Zealand sent me these hexagon units last year. She wants me to make something out of them; cushion, bag, apron, wall hanging, tablecloth, runner etc...??? They are done by the English method of patchwork; on paper. Jocelyn wants me to complete whatever I decide making before her birthday in August this year. HELP! I've never done any hexagon in my life, so indeed it's going to be a challenge! I still haven't decided what to make and if I'm going to add some more units...

Saturday, March 14, 2009

It's done!!! The "nightmare" UFO is completed!!!

I'd never thought I was going to complete it! I decided tying it, which went much faster than I'd expected! (It's the first time I've done tying). This is the result after 4-5 days of intensive work! :-) For the tying I've used two colors of pearl cotton; light- and dark blue. The knots are placed every 3" (8cm) and cut approx 1" (2,5cm). It has 849 knots, and I've done running stitches on the diagonal lines.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Bed cover progressing...

Johnny's bed cover... I ran out of fabric for the green border! Some minutes of panicking until I found out the web shop still has a few yards in stock - what a relief! I can't do more on this one before I receive the fabric, which normally takes 10-14 days.

Baby quilt progressing...

I've been working on the baby quilt today; pinned the three layers together. I consider tying it with pink 1/8" silk ribbon, but no way the ribbon wants to go through the layers!!! :-( Perhaps I'm using a wrong needle? Well, I won't give up! Other possibilities are pearl cotton or embroidery floss... I mean, if the silk ribbon doesn't want to cooperate!!!

Friday, March 6, 2009


I'm addicted to everything chocolate!!! I can't resist chocolate & chocolate cakes! Brownies are one of my favorites! The brownie I made today is so yummy; added chopped almonds (didn't have nuts) and it became a bit "sticky", which I like the most!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Look what I found...

I have never been 100% satisfied with my "cave" (computer/sewing room), and after hubby pestered me with suggestions I finally decided to move my beloved bookshelf into the bedroom. The computer corner needed more "air", and in the end I got the idea to re-do that corner by adding half the bookshelf (yes, it consisted of two parts) to the left side of the desk where I placed all those "things" that belong to a computer. I even got space for my quilting books- and magazines! :-) I placed the upper part of the bookshelf in the bed room. Actually it looks cozier there too with some books! :-) Sadly I had to put some of the books into the wardrobe, but hopefully I'll buy another bookshelf soon... Some years ago I made two dolls that are displayed on the bookshelf. Last year I made the doll/angel (left) after a pattern in "Handmade". And then is my beloved teddy bear "Bamse" - poor thing - I still haven't got around making him clothes - as you can see!

Isn't it fun what pops up when not looking for it?! When emptying the bookshelf I discovered a small box with letters, and on the bottom of the box I found this beautiful small quilt made by my dear friend Kari in 2007!!! I had completely forgotten about it! Shame on me! The quilt is made from a photo she took during her visit to Mauritius some years earlier. The technique is called faux chenille. Now it is out of the box and hanging on the notice board in front of me! :-)

...And I found this one! It's a small DMC cross-stitch booklet! On the front it is printed "Bibliothèque DMC - Point de Marque - 3me Serie". I got it from MIL some years ago, and misplaced it - of course! I have no idea how old it is. The back cover is missing, perhaps it had shown which year it was printed... In addition to letters in different sizes, it has other patterns like; borders, flowers, people and even a horse! Oh, how I'd like to do cross-stitching again.....

Monday, March 2, 2009


Beautiful sunset tonight...

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Baby quilt & bed cover...

I've been lazy the last couple of weeks... Haven't done much sewing, except putting together the baby quilt, which is now ready for the batting and backing. I'm not sure I have suitable batting... If I don't have anything I have to go shopping at Hassamal (craft shop) in Rose Hill... It's not that I haven't been doing anything though; I've been busy with my blog.

The bed cover is still there, waiting to be tied. I'm just looking at it every day without doing anything to it... And the knitting is going very slow too...

Last night I thought of something else; needlepoint! I used to do a lot of needlepoint works 25-30 years ago, but got tired of it and wanted to do other crafts. A few years ago buddy Johnny visited us, and guess what he gave me for my birthday?! Needlepoint work!!! He knows how fed up I was doing needlepoint works some years ago and even then he dared!!! Most probably he doesn't remember I hate using wool for needlepoint, and even then he bought wool skeins!!! Hehehe!!! The work shows a cottage in the forest, a pine tree in front of it, mountains and forest in the background and in front a guy rowing his boat. He chose this one, because it should remind me of my childhood home - he said... As it is so many years since I did needlepoint work, perhaps I should give it a try - in between the other crafts I do... Be sure I'll get itchy because I don't find it easy to work with wool floss...!!!

A little bit later in the night...
I did give the needlepoint work a try... But as I already have said; the wool floss........ eeeehhhh! :-( I'm already tired of it...

Later on I decided to start cutting the fabrics for Johnny's bed cover. Last year I promised to make him a bed cover for his old four-poster bed. He wanted something a bit "old & rustic", and after doing some search at the net I came across Debbie Mumm "Rustic Retreat". The pattern is a wall quilt that I have to make longer so it fits his bed. I've already cut the fabrics for the trees and made one "tree-block" - see photo.