Sunday, May 29, 2011

Interesting & amusing

I haven't any stitching to show at present: we have had our grand daughter staying with us for a few days so that has been the focus of our attention.  At 14 Ally is a delight and we were thrilled to have her here.  We minded the twins next door (as I do twice a day) and at 8 months old they were especially well looked after with Ally there to help.  On Friday evening we made Gemista (stuffed tomatoes & eggplant): Ally loves Greek food (her dad is Greek) and enjoyed the preparation of this dish.

This morning we were making breakfast and looking out the kitchen window at the fog down across the Moorooduc plain when we noticed a fox in the garden next door.  There are a lot of foxes around the area but I have never seen a live one before and it was very exciting to see.
On the way to take Ally home I saw this amusing advertising sign by the side of the road 
"Pure Organic Horse Manure".  

It did seem funny.

Monday, May 23, 2011

As promised

As mentioned previously I have been working on some small and quick projects lately.  

These little fairy slippers are based roughly on the design by Annette Emms (must check that spelling) which was featured in Stitch magazine years ago.  These ones are made of printed cotton stitched with some of the special stitches on my sewing machine.

 They are lined with felt and stitched with hem stitch.

The tassel is not finished - the top has french knots and beads: I am going to dip the ends of it into some dye to match the top and will make a twisted cord to hang it.

 These last two pics are of a scissor fob I made ages ago:  the design is my interpretation of a design that was featured in an Inspirations Magazine.

It is quite pretty and it hangs on a lamp in our bedroom.  

Now speaking of promises: I haven't forgotten the giveaway I promised in April.  The little packages are being put together and will be sent out soon.  I will let you know when.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Autumn is well under way now and there are more leaves on the ground than on the trees.

I am always fascinated by the changing colours of the different kind of leaves.  

The darkness closes in early in the evenings which means that there is more time for stitching and other creative activities.  

I have been making some fairy slippers and some tassels tonight.   I do enjoy these small items - easy to do and finished off quickly.  Very satisfying.  There will be pics in my next post. 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

holiday shopping

We are back in cold and gloomy Melbourne now: after our quick visit to the lovely warm northern New South Wales coast.  

It was good to see my father-in-law and spend some time with him.  We always enjoy our time together and the warm weather is a real bonus at this time of the year.

I managed to visit 4 op shops in the area and bought some lovely vintage doileys and a bag full of buckles and buttons.  I left most of the buckles at Maurice's (father-in-law) home as they were heavy and I can bring some  more home next time.  I  bought a pretty little cane case which I fitted out with scissors, tape measure, needles, beads etc and that also stayed for my next visit.  I think it is wise to leave some necessary items there in case of a quick and unexpected visit sometime.  Toothbrush and moisturiser etc are already there as are some bathers and beach towel.

The doileys will need a good wash and iron and maybe some starch; the buckles are a mixture of metal and plastic and will be ideal for future projects.

 I am looking forward to putting some of my recent purchases to good, creative use.

Saturday, May 14, 2011


Last Wednesday we left behind a cold, windy and wet Melbourne to travel north to a kinder clime.  When we arrived at Gold Coast Airport it was 21 degrees and the locals had their woollies on against the winter chill!
We have come to stay a few days with my father-in-law to make sure all is well with him and to have a little break from the pressure I was feeling at home.
Here there is no stress, just decisions about whether to swim in the surf or take a nap in the afternoon.
I have spent time with my sister-in-law who I first met in High School and with Elizabeth from 
Both of these lovely ladies accompanied me to the local op shops in search of treasures.  We were not disappointed.  Pics later.  It is such a treat to be able to catch up with friends who live so far away and to be able to take up where we left off last time.

I will post some photos when I am home again in chilly Melbourne: I only have prepaid broadband here and it disappears pretty quickly when uploading.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

gardening days

 We are making good progress with the new sections of the garden.  This first picture shows little shrubs; westringia, correa, native mint, grevilleas.  They are tiny now but by the time the spring arrives they will be lovely. 
 The fish pond is in position now, we just need to do some landscaping and planting around it and then we will be able to plant some water lillies and add the fish.

I have the pump, the lights, and everything else needed to finish off the project.

 This is the garden which is right at the back of the garden.  More Westringias and other favourite plants including the Gordonia which is in flower.
 Our neighbours over the back and across had some of their trees removed and this large one was trimmed and cleaned up a bit.  I am so pleased they didn't take it all down.
Can you see the man in the tree?  He is up really high and well secured with ropes and harnesses.

You can see from this last pic that the tree towers over the house, it is three storeys high and you can just see the top of the roof and if you look carefully you can see the tree man up on the branch. 

There are some jobs you just wouldn't want to do.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Silk Ribbon Embroidery

When I started stitching for pleasure a few years ago I didn't have books to refer to and most of what I did was pretty basic: I learnt a lot along the way.
This cottage is something I made early on, when I was exploring different stitches, materials and ideas.  The perspective is shocking but all in all I do quite like this piece.  It hangs on the wall in my workroom so it always around.  Of course there are lots of things I would do differently now but it was a good start.

I haven't forgotten the giveaways I promised for all those who commented during April.  They will be sent out by the end of May.  Thanks to all those who read my blog and leave their thoughts.

Speaking of thoughts: the broken vase is still in its box.  I cannot bring myself to throw it out (the seller didn't want it back) so I am thinking of smashing it up a bit more and making some sort of mosaic thingy with it.  

The weather here is cooling down as we approach winter and I am hoping to settle into some serious stitching soon.  I have managed to do a little bit while babysitting the last few days so I will show you what I have been doing soon.

I noticed on the news that there are forest fires in various places in the UK.  This seems so unusual, but I understand it has been particularly dry this past month or so.  Keep safe everyone.

Sunday, May 1, 2011


 Last week I bought a gorgeous vintage vase from an on-line auction site.  I was so excited about its impending arrival: imagine my reaction when I opened the parcel to find the vase in pieces.
The vase was not expensive and I have had a full refund but the vase was by a Sydney pottery and cannot be replaced.  I must stress that this was not purchased through Ebay or Etsy.