Friday, April 21, 2017

A Change of Pace.

As I had to pack up my quilting things for house inspections I decided it was time to work on a few things which don't create so much mess. LOL
   I finished the first baby quilt top I'd started and have put it away for now. It will be for one of my nieces or nephews' babies and I will add borders and the baby's name when the baby arrives.
  I also found a half jelly roll which has a Woodlands theme which is what my DD is having for their nursery. I didn't want to cut the fabric up too much and lose the designs on the fabric so I made it up like a jelly race quilt then cut 6.5 inches off twice and reversed one panel. I'll border the inner panel with white and then add borders so almost finished that one too.
 They are also talking about eliminating plastic bags for shoppers here, and some states already do this so I thought I'd make some more cloth bags. I started by covering eco bags I already had but will also make some without as I think that might be quicker. I will have very stylish grocery bags now.
  I also needed to start on more baby sewing as my DD is already half way to delivery. I made these little pants in newborn size but I think I will add to make the waist band higher on the next pair I make with this pattern as they don't seem to be big enough to cover a nappy. I'm also knitting baby jackets now that the weather here is cooler. I will return to finishing more quilts but it's nice not to have too much stuff to tidy away for house inspections. More decluttering will happen over the weekend too.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Wednesday, April 19, 2017

It Never Gets Old.

 As you can see I have been very busy finishing off more QAYG quilts from donated blocks. I still love putting them together and it is so easy when I receive donated blocks. I've even had bindings donated at times and that speeds up the process even more. These quilts will be going to clients at the Peter Mac Cancer Centre and kids in Foster Care.




 There was no sewing yesterday as we had 2 house inspections but I have quite a few finished quilts to donate now and these finishes have depleted my stash a bit as I used that for the backings and bindings. I still have more QAYG blocks to put together and will get back to it soon.
   Many thanks for your kind comments. Margaret, we live 2 and a half hours from Melbourne in the country, and we are moving to the outskirts of Melbourne to be closer to our DD, her lovely husband and our expected grandson. Marijke, if only we were close to emptying the house. LOL A large house and living here for 27 years, means that there is a lot to declutter and move, but we will get there.
   All of the house inspections have been very positive so far so fingers crossed.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

Quilting Frenzy.

It's surprising how much quilting you can finish when you have downsized the house and need to get some finished quilts donated before you sell and move. The first 4 quilts were tops made by members of my Melbourne quilting group and I volunteer to quilt tops for the group. It's always fun to work with new fabric and designs without having to store the finished quilts.



 These last 3 quilts were made from donated tops from my lovely blog readers.  It's fun to search my stash of fabrics for backings and bindings and again the cupboards are being emptied for a good cause. All of these quilts will be donated to Peter Mac Cancer Centre or to kids in Foster Care.

A huge thank you to everyone who has donated QAYG blocks, tops or fabric. They are all being used to make quilts for the needy and it's only been possible to donate so many due to all my wonderful helpers.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Time For QAYG.

 Thanks to the lovely quilters who have used up their scraps by making QAYG blocks I have a ready supply of blocks to finish off donation quilts quickly. I have made thousands of quilts from QAYG blocks and I never tire of them. While packing up my fabric I found more bags of blocks I had stored when life was too busy to finish them into quilts so I have been busy getting more finished now.

 I've been making more QAYG quilts and have another pile ready to photograph. My pile of fabric that has been in the cupboard is also being used up for the sashing and binding strips so I am emptying cupboards as well as getting quilts finished for donation. A win-win!
I hope you all enjoyed a happy and peaceful Easter break and thanks for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Friday, April 14, 2017

So Far.

 It hasn't taken me long to take the blocks apart, repiece them and get them ready to be joined together again. I think I've done about 2/3rds of the top but I will probably make it larger using similar fabrics.
I also started making a baby quilt as I have 4 due between July and Oct, 3 of them will be within 4 weeks or so. I usually wait to see what gender the baby is but this time I am going to piece enough tops for boys and girls, maybe 3 of each, add borders and then I will only have to applique the baby's name and quilt it. Hopefully I will be able to get them done before June as it looks like the rest of the year is gouing to be very busy with moving etc.
  I have also been busy quilting tops and finishing QAYG quilts so I will have more to share soon. Many thanks for your words of comfort, as it means a lot to me.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Thursday, April 13, 2017

A Labour of Love.

 Now that our home is ready for sale we are busy sorting through all of those belongings we have had stored in our shed. You know, all of those things you couldn't part with but didn't need, so they were put away for a decision at a later time. As well I have received a lot of donated tops and orphan blocks over the years and they have been carefully stored until I had time to complete them for donation.
  Now we have time for more decluttering I am gathering some tops and blocks from storage, as well as more QAYG blocks, to finish. This top was donated and I was going to quilt it but found it had been hand pieced by a beginner (that's OK we all have to start somewhere) but lots of the seams had blown as the stitching was too far apart. The fabric was good quilt shop quality and quilting it as is would mean it wouldn't stand up to much use without more seams coming apart.
  I've started to take the blocks apart and resew them so they will be able to become a much loved treasure as a donation quilt. The blocks were originally cut by scissors and the shapes varied, as well as varying seam allowances,so I am trimming the blocks a bit smaller than the originals so I have adequate seam allowances and the seams won't fray.

 It's a labour of love but I think it's worth it to remake the top and I know it will be treasured. As the stitching was done by hand it is relatively quick to unpick the stitches in the evening when I am taking a break from the sewing machine.
 As you can see they will look really nice when they are remade and I might add a few more fabrics to make it a bit bigger. I will keep going with this in between other finishes and hope to share its finish with you soon.
  Many thanks for all of your kind messages re my dad's passing. We had another memorial service yesterday at the care centre where he has lived for the last 3 years, so his friends there could say their goodbyes too. His biggest regret was not living long enough to see one of his friends celebarte his 100th birthday in September this year. It was lovely to meet his friends and hear how much he had meant to them and how they were missing him. Many people who had known us as children came to extend their condolences and I have realized that it has affected me more than I realized.
 Hugs, Jan Mac

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

QAYG Support.

 I'm late in acknowledging but I have been very lucky to receive more beautiful QAYG blocks from Linda A. who lives in NZ and the UK. Linda very kindly made more QAYG blocks and posted them from NZ before she flew back to the UK. The blocks are a great way to clear out your older scraps but my scrap pile doesn't seem to be getting any smaller.
 I also received another 3 bags of QAYG blocks made by Bev K. from Bendigo, and delivered by Lesley L. of Rochester. Bev does a great job using up scraps of batting and lots of string scraps from the Rochester and Ky Valley quilters.
 I have been busy getting more QAYG quilts finished from the donated blocks so I will have some more finished quilts to share soon.
Thanks you so much for your kind words on my Dad's passing. I really appreciate your comments and I also appreciate all of you who have supplied me with QAYG blocks to make quilts for the needy. We've been lucky to have some much needed rain over the past week and our resident kangaroos came up close to the house to feed on some new green shoots. I will miss them when we move but that means we will have to go camping more often to enjoy the bush.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Sunday, April 9, 2017

The End of an Era.

     My Dad died 10 days ago after a short illness. He would have been 92 in June and he is the last of his siblings and relatives of that generation. He has missed Mum every day for the last 10 years and we know he will be happily reunited with her again now. The funeral was last week in the middle of house inspections etc and life continues to be busy here but things have changed and I am still getting my head around the fact that he is gone as Ray and I had taken him to Drs appointments, coffee dates, shopping etc for the last 10 years.
    The packing and sorting will continue now after taking some time with family to reflect on Dad's life. We will continue to celebrate his birthday on June 22nd as a family gathering and will continue to get together with the extended family for an early Christmas gathering too. At the funeral we received exciting news that 2 more nieces are expecting babies this year so I now have 4 baby quilts to make which reminds us all that life continues despite our ups and downs.
Hugs, Jan Mac
    
    

Friday, March 24, 2017

Old Habits.

 I tried to throw out the scraps left from using the Tumbler Die to use up some of my fabrics and make more donation quilts. I really did try, I promise!! But old habits were stronger and I did fish out the fabrics which were left over from the triangular sides and pieced them into more fabric which meant I could cut more Tumbler shapes.
I am joining them with alternate plain cream fabric and it will be a very low-cost quilt to donate as, apart from the cream fabric, it will be made entirely from scraps. You can't beat that so I guess some old habits are worth holding on to.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Debulking The Stash

 I've had a fabulous few days in Melbourne going to the Adele concert with my DD. We were very lucky to get tickets and it was a wonderful concert despite the crowds when we left. There was also more baby shopping and we bought fabric to make cot sheets and cute fabric with animals to trim them.
    I've also been busy going through the stash of fabric I still need to move and I've been cutting up lots and lots of fabric using my Go Cutter and the larger Tumbler shape. Usually I save all the scraps to use up too but I have so many that I am ditching them if they are smaller than an inch wide.
 I thought it would be easier to transport tumbler shapes rather than piles of fabric and it's a great way to use up some of my much older fabric. I have been gifted with fabric too over the years and while I can't spread my sewing out at the moment, I can at least cut Tumblers and stockpile them for when I have time to sew.
I can't throw out larger scraps though and I am using them to make into Tumbler shapes by stitching them on foundation paper using old phone book pages. Then I run them through the Go Cutter and I have some usable pieces to work with. I have also been cutting some smaller Tumblers to make a quilt for myself one day, although I will probably donate it as well. LOL
Back to the stash.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Still Quilting.

 I've been powering through these donated tops and it's great to start to clear the back load and get them donated. The first 2 are from my Melbourne quilting group and I have sewn the binding on but left the hand stitching for other members to finish off at our Gift Quilt Day on Monday.

 The green and orange quilt is ideal for a cot sized quilt and I have backed it with Winnie the Pooh fabric for a child friendly finish.

Still lots to do but I can see progress has been made.
Hugs, Jan Mac

QAYG Abundance.

The large pile of accumulated QAYG blocks is on its way down again now I have had some time to make them into quilts. They are such an easy way for me to get finished quilts donated and even just a few blocks from someone can make a difference.
   I was asked for some larger quilts for a drug and rehab centre and I managed to get all of these done in a couple of days. I have to rely on my DH to be the quilt holder now we have taken down the wooden holder I used to rely on so please excuse the feet in the shot. LOl


I had saved a pile of blue blocks for just such a quilt and I know someone will love it.

Thank you all so much for your support with these QAYG blocks and joining strips. I really appreciate all of your help and I have some more QAYG finishes to share as soon as I can get my quilt holder to stand still again. LOL
 Also thanks for your lovely comments and for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac

Monday, March 13, 2017

Quilting Frenzy.

 Now the house is sale-ready, it's time to tackle some of the boxes of donated quilt tops in the shed. I figure if I get them made into quilts I can donate them so it's a win-win. Someone needy gets a lovely warm quilt to snuggle in and I have less stuff to move. LOL
  All of these tops were made by other generous quilters and I had the pleasure of quilting them.


 The owl quilt is bound but the binding is not stitched down as I prepared that for the hand stitchers to sew at our next Gift Quilt Day next week, for my Melbourne group.



This is where all the quilting is happening now. I find I'm using my industrial sewing machine more and more and it's an absolute workhorse. I have burnt out 3 sewing machines as domestic machines just aren't made for the amount of sewing and quilting I do so this one is ideal for all the QAYG quilts and tops I quilt. I've even started using it to stitch baby wraps, bibs and burp cloths.
   I have some more quilts to photograph and more QAYG finishes. Many thanks for your kind comments. I'm very happy to be back and still undecided on the Oz Comfort Quilts blog as I will have to start it again, so I need to make sure there will be time for that too.
Thanks for stopping by.
Hugs, Jan Mac