Monday, February 08, 2016

Quilts Flapping in the Breeze.

After lots of rain recently the weather cooperated for the Garden Party at Katipatch yesterday. The day was breezy and the quilts flapped out and touched the viewers which was amusing as the signs said "Don't touch the quilts."

 I will show you the quilts that most appealed to me. None were named so I can't tell you who made them.
 Loved the colours!
 Rocky Tims Idea? 
 Again very pleasing colours. It really made the focal point stand out.
 The varying tones of blue in denim.
 Click to enlarge to see the detail here.

 A view through the  Trellis and surrounding garden.

An advent calendar with little pockets.

Some of Eddie's potted fruit trees.
 As expected I met up with lots of ladies who quilt. A small group of us sat in the shade of the big copper beech tree and ate a pleasant lunch we purchased from local church ladies who were catering there. I perused the sales tables and made some purchases.  ( things I could make myself but I enjoy buying from others and the items were very well made  ) 
.At Carol's shop I bought a lovely pack of blue Bali pops batiks pre cut strips with a new project in mind, and some threads and pieces of felt in colours I am short of.

  I made my way home  early afternoon and  R was just finishing cooking up a large pot of tomato paste. We have lovely tomatoes ready and they may split with all the rain so needed using. 

 We later had friends from Matamata call in to return loaned books and stay for a catch up. They came over the hill to go to the movies in Tauranga.
 A very pleasant day off for me. I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Bench Basting my Quilt.

When we did major kitchen alterations 11 years ago I made sure I got one very long bench with no sink  or appliances in it. I did this with quilting in mind.

 I am now quilting my small Jewel Box quilt . Here is how I went about bench basting it.
 I lay it on the carpet to cut out my batting. from a larger piece.
 Using masking tape I smoothed out my backing fabric wrong side up. ( in this case it is a batik so made little difference ) and stuck it to the bench.
 I then smoothed the batting over the top and then the (flimsy ) quilt top over that . 3 layers. ( like a sandwich, hence the term sandwiching a quilt.)
 Using curved safety pins I then secured the 3 layers every 10 or so centimetres. At this stage I leave the pins undone.  I try and place the pins away from the seam lines as my first quilting stitches will be in the ditch.When it is pinned all over I rip off the masking tape and turn all 3 layers now firmly adhering to each other over.
 I check the back and adjust any pins by pining from the wrong  or backing side and feel underneath with my hand and take the pin I am moving away.

 I do this all over till the backing fabric is lying totally smooth with no tiny wrinkles. I then flip the whole thing back to the front and repeat the inspection for wrinkles.
 When happy it is as I want it I close all the safety pins.
 The sandwiched and pin basted quilt can now be moved around freely for quilting.
 So far I have done one half hour session quilting it.  I firstly stitch in the ditch ( seam line ) in one direction, then the opposite way width wise and lengthwise. This secures the quilt and some pins can be removed.

No wrinkles. No sore knees from basting on the floor.

Friday, January 29, 2016

Keeping Cool in Tauranga.

Yesterday part 1 of water supply repairs was happening here  at our place so I took myself off for most of the day to do messages and visit the inner city of Tauranga. As well as walking around shops I went to the waterfront to see what was happening.
 It was a very hot day and folk were cooling off in different ways.
 Just the kiddies and mainly girls were really having fun running through or standing over the water spouts.
 Bigger girls read good books under a tree.
 Not many walked for too long it was too hot.
 I hope this person didn't stay relaxed there for too long as she was no longer in the shade.

 Kids mostly have lots of energy to climb and slide and swing and explore.
 It wasn't long before Lynley Dodd's characters Hairy Maclary: Muffin Mclay; Bitzer Maloney; Schnitzel von Krumm; Bottomley Potts and  Hercules Morse were attracting attention .
 Is that Scarface Claw  hiding or up the pole?
  If you are visiting Tauranga soon be sure to take any little people ( and grown up ones ) to visit these Characters.

Friday, January 22, 2016

Good Day for a Picnic.

By tradition, our Tauranga Patchwork & Quilting Group start the year by having a picnic at Kulim Park. The weather was brilliant. 
 We sit and talk and stitch or knit or just relax.
 Most of us haven't seen each other since early December so there is plenty to chat about.
 Every year I take photos and they are never wonderful as the light and shade contrast is too great.  Notice in the background a train going by. The ground trembles and we have to stop talking till the train is gone. This happened 5 times while we were there.

  Before lunch the tide was well in but by the time a friend and I had been for a walk mid afternoon it was way out.
 Every one else went home early ( probably for Nana naps )  so M and I walked along the waterfront from Kulim Park to Ferguson Park and back along this walkway.
 Along the way is a very large tree with hollows in it big enough for kids to hide inside.
 Very pleasant to have a day out.

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Another Part Added.

 When it rained  I got a whole afternoon sewing in. All my sewing gear and machine had been having a holiday in the cupboard . Luckily I had thought to write myself a few notes before I packed it all away some weeks ago. At the top of the photo is the latest section  I made and now have pinned in place ready to sew on. ( the width of 4 rows of the small squares ) In front on the table is a small pile of still usable parts for maybe one more section. I am having quite a hunt to find suitable lights for the half square triangles. They are quite essential to make the design stand out.

 The rain we have been having ( thank you ) is boosting the size of the pickings I am getting from my strawberry  and blueberry patch . It is also increasing the number of rots in the strawbs.

 Having recently got a new blender we have been having some interesting smoothies. These blueberries ended up in one last night along with other fruit and some pourable yoghurt and almond milk. and  ground LSA. No 2 ever turn out exactly the same.
 This is an earlier version using yellow fruits ( gold kiwis ,frozen pineapple some orange  almond milk and a spoon of R's marmalade ) ( Coconut milk is also good in them ) 
 Every 2nd  or 3rd day I have to do a lot of bending to pick these dwarf beans called Tendergreen. ( Watkins seeds ) . I don't care for frozen beans much so have been giving some away. 

 The courgettes are being quite generous now ( you know  how closely they need watching unless you desire marrows )  and I have been making various recipes. This one was in the NZ Listener 1 week ago. It turned out nicely but is really just a frittatta.
 The main ingredients were new potatoes and courgettes ( which we have  ) eggs some cream seasoning and cheese. Kumara would work just as well I think.

 I also made a Donna Hay recipe called  Raw Peppermint Slice. It is from her magazine called Donna Hay - Fresh & Light Power Foods. It cost  NZ $ 9.99  and has more yummy recipes in it than any other book or mag I have seen lately.
 Today we have a gang of 26 workers in to get us up to speed with our kiwifruit thinning. ( That means in one day they can do what would have taken me 26 days to get done. ) It needs to be done now so the fruit that remains can gain maximum size. The rain will help.
 We had fertilizer spread last Friday so that got gently washed in.( twice ) 
 It was a side dressing of 2 ferts and took this driver on his quad bike pulling a little spreader about 15 minutes to do all the kiwifruit blocks.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Time in the Garden.

We have been blessed with lots of rain so far in January. The birdbath tells the story.
 I spent the entire afternoon yesterday weeding my long border and around this tomato soup echinacea.
 I got such a lot done but realise all that rain will make the remaining weeds I didn't get to yet , double in size very quickly.Still it was just what the garden and our fruit crops needed so all good really.
 I have gift lilies in a vase inside and lilies in the garden.( a storm is coming so they may get trashed ) The yellow one is Lilium oriental belladonna lemon and the other in front is Gluhwein .
 The blue hydrangeas love the extra water.
 This Pink  Delight Vireya rhododendron is a cutting grown one in a big blue pot outside  the dining room door
 R spent some time weeding one vege patch  yesterday so the courgettes don't get smothered - they need picking daily.

 Beans just ready now too.
 My successions of plantings of Tom Thumb lettuce  are just enough for constant salads. They are crisp, with a little heart - that's how I like lettuce.
 The threatening rain still hasn't arrived  ( and it's 11 am ) so we may work in the vines this afternoon after all.

Thursday, January 07, 2016

Nice Day For a Wedding.

We were fortunate to be guests at a wedding this week. I first met the bride when she was 4, so am very pleased she has found the right person to spend the rest of her life with.
 You know I don't put photos of people on here without their permission so I took some shots especially with the blog in mind. 
 There was a Champagne Fountain and this amazing croquembouche that the groom's Mother made. It  ( they - the cream puffs, held together with spun toffee  ) was delicious .
 The tables all had names of different fishing flies as the groom ( and more recently the bride ) are keen trout fishers.
 Our table was the Scotch Poacher, a fly used in the evening or low light.The  beeswax candles  were made by the groom from his own 3 beehives.

 There were lots of flowers as the bride, who is a lawyer  has also  been a florist, so even on the cake.
 The bride's Mother made a large heart wreath with fresh red roses  that was hanging in the garden to stand behind for photos.

 The show stealing moment was at the ceremony where the ring bearer just 16 months old toddled up the grass slope, fell, grinned, got up again and kept going to make his delivery amid great applause from everyone. So, so cute .
 We had a lovely evening out with much talk and laughter with old friends and young ones alike.
 I hope the newly married couple have a long and happy life together.