Monday, November 24, 2014


Yesterday we had the first sunny ( non windy ) day in ages. So good!  I spent many hours over the weekend gardening so no sewing. ( I'll get back to your question soon Isabelle. )
 As we have had lots of rain during Spring the roses in my garden are doing well. I'd like to share them with you.
 If I had to have just one rose it would be Charles Austin because of it's amazing perfume and hardy nature. ( I have 2 )

 Also flowering well are the 3 Graham Thomas roses on a fence at the edge of the garden near a Kiwifruit block.
 As there are 3 plants I can go out and pick a great big bunch to bring inside.
 Many of the roses have people's  names.
 Meg ( below ) has the prettiest face of all.
 Its the stamens and the colour I like.( not much perfume )
Her neighbour is called Penelope , she has a much paler face.
Pink Sparrieshoop  ( below ) almost died some years ago but recovered and is looking lovely beside the driveway.

 Crepuscule is up over a pergola - seen here photographed against the sky and the gum trees.
 Only the bottom got pruned as I can't reach the high up parts ; but it hasn't minded.

Also hard to control is Cecile Brunner ( the sweetheart rose ) . It frequently scrambles up into the surrounding trees.

 Lavender Dream is planted in the wrong place and is overshadowed by tall trees but manages to put out some flowers.
 Finally here is one of the Apple Blossom flower carpet roses that sprawl everywhere and can be pruned with loppers.I much prefer it's colour to the original cerise flowercarpet .
 These are just some of my rosy friends. 
 There is also Sally Holmes;Cornelia; Aryiles; Mutablis;Annais Segalis; Complicata; Veilchenblau White flower carpet and Petite Penny.

 Still living but not thriving are Sweet Juliette; Juliesquel;Wise Woman;Depres a Fleurs Jaune ( It  got damaged) and Loving Memory.
 When they are doing well Roses are a delight. I am battling bronze beetles which chew them - they have only been in my garden over the last 10 years - never had them before that. I can't spray them ( which would be the solution )( I digitally kill as many as I can ) because of the bees. It is just coming up to kiwifruit pollination time ( very late this year )and I cannot kill any of Wal's bees. Bees must be looked after.
 Do you like roses? What one is your favourite?

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Have You Been Eating Your Greens?

Last Saturday we had a big storm. It took the power out and trashed the garden and Kiwifruit vines. It blew one avocado tree right over ( bugger! ) 
 In the vege garden we had some silver beet plants that were just going to seed. It downed them over the newly planted tomatoes. R went and cut them off at ground level and I picked some leaves  for us to use rather than waste......
 I just selected the youngest tastiest leaves. Yes, we are going to have spinach tart and spinach everything else I can think of.  It keeps quite well washed and in a plastic bag in the fridge. I know it freezes but we always have fresh ready so I don't bother.
 Rainy, stormy days meant some sewing got done. ( the power outage was at 8.30pm so I had done my string piecing by then. )
 How do you photograph that.. ..wind it round and round.
 The first 2 ( of 6 ) long strips for my quilt top are successfully joined.
 Despite the rough weather my roses are looking and smelling rather good. Some pics in the next post. We haven't had to water any of the new vege plantings.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Wall Hangings that Appealed to Me.

This is a follow on from yesterday.
 There were several hangings in Bernina Aotearoa Quilters Challenged "Growth," I liked.
 On the left Mother Earth by Kathleen Burford of Christchurch.
 The stitching on the gum flowers was just right and the stamens were tiny French knots.( apologies to the maker I have cut your name off. ).... (Thank you, Maree. This gum flower quilt was made by Jennifer Pattison from Taranaki. )
 This green landscape around Auckland showed how the city has spread over the last few decades. The maker lives in Orewa  and the close stitching over the highly populated areas worked well.

In the Space Between,challenge , Charlotte Scott's Feather was lovely. ( see yesterday's post for a link to her website. )

  Hazel Foot's entry, deserved the ribbon!

 Valda Sutton's , Big Day Out in the Space Between Challenge was so realistic. She had used her own photo printed onto fabric of the figures  and placed them on her own seaside background.

The Judges for the show had their own displays.  I loved this by Judith Ross.( wish she had shown us more of her work )

 These 4 by Judge Jenny Bacon.


In the wall Hangings,  Altered Fabrics by Susan McRae also appealed.

 Hazel Foot's Fantasia  had amazing colours ( sorry I didn't fit it all in  - It was very long )
 The photo doesn't do Chris Behersing's Creamed justice. It was so pale and delicate. It would look amazing on a bed.
 In this close up you can see the detail of the Wedding Ring design around the flowers. The quilt had lovely scalloped edges.

 Finally some of the entries in the Hoffman Challenge.

 On the way home we were comparing photos and I discovered I had missed a couple of lovely quilts. I think this happens when there is a crowd in front of a quilt and I tell myself I will come back to have a closer look when it clears and that doesn't always happen.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Quilts That Got My Close Attention.

As promised here are some of the quilts I liked the best at  
The Auckland Festival of Quilts 2014.
 Caravan Quilt by Val Williams. The central panel was not parallel lines but sloped in towards the top.(  A camera parallax error could almost destroy this aspect ). Here is some detail.
 She has captured the vortex line( in water or air )  so well.

 The Grove by Ngaire Fleming.
 Detail of one of the trees.
 4 inch Delight by Julie Britten. This was all hand pieced and had many hours work in it.
 Detail of the little acorns block. 

 Crocus Wreath by Chizuko Hoy.
 Detail of one of the blocks.

 Pacific Dream by Lyn Winkel.

 I particularly liked these blocks in her quilt.
 A Dragonfly in Autumn was a delightful wall hanging by Lynette O'Donnell.
 The Challenges were displayed on the landing so I stood on the stairs to get a general shot of viewers looking at the Pins and Needles display.

 I will show more wall hangings tomorrow. If you wish to see what others thought, have a look at Debs Website. She has a quite different selection. So does Charlotte. (  )

I really enjoyed the quilts and wall hangings and merchants but for once didn't buy much.I found a fabric that might suit for my sashings but could only get a metre so will send for more.
 I was so disappointed that Minerva Books ( NZ Quilter ) were not there. ( so I came home new bookless! ) I also thought the food available in the cafe was uninspiring and not nearly up to the standard of previous years. 

Friday, November 07, 2014

November Treats.

 November brings some stormy weather but it also brings some treats. In the garden and with quilts.
 This little rhododendron called Carey Ann is flowering the best it ever has. As we drive out the gateway or coming the other way into the property it is a bright splash of colour at the moment.
 It can grow to 1.5 metres but this one isn't that big yet. It is neat and compact not at all leggy like some other rhodos.

Today I am organizing  myself for a big day out, with an early start, tomorrow. I am going to the Auckland Festival of Quilts. In the past our P and Q group  have taken a big bus, but we didn't have the numbers this year so one of our younger ladies is driving a 12 seater and taking us all to Auckland. Thanks Sandra. I am charging my camera batteries right now, so if you come back on Sunday or Monday I will have photos of quilts to share.
 I will be looking to see if there is any fabric suitable for the sashing on my flower quilt. I still haven't decided the best way to go with that. Maybe I will get some inspiration or clues tomorrow. I know I will have a lovely time looking at beautiful quilts and maybe a little shopping.
 I will keep my eyes peeled for you Kiwi ladies I now recognize from previous years or from your blogs.


 This ones a treat for my senses too. A bright orange ( deciduous ) Azalea Mollis is just coming into flower. It has an amazing perfume.