Tuesday, 24 October 2017


My daughter bought this huge quilt at a second hand fabric market for $30! She had to finish a few edge bits off but then somehow I ended up with it for quilting. Just stipple as it will be used mostly as a picnic quilt. Yeah ok?
I had gone around maybe 3 1/2 sides - reasonably wide - before acquiring my new machine. So I got it out to practise the new BSR on and voila! it's finished!
The BSR makes quilting much more relaxing. I did not end up all tense and bent sideways trying to get my stitches the same length. And the increased length of the throat, although just a few inches, makes a massive difference moving a large quilt through. I stopped once and did a bit of folding but no clips or fussing to fit it under. Truely the 'dream machine'.

technology update

I had the recent good fortune to attend the New Zealand Quilt Symposium in Christchurch with a group of friends - a big thank you to them for a fun time had - good company and lots of laughs (and a few dramas!)
I did one workshop: Beyond Meander with Chris Kenna. It was a good class and was an update on machine quilting which, although I am experienced at, I've been a bit out of the loop these last 10 years and thought there were probably new things to learn.
What I did learn is that the process has not changed but the machines to do it with most certainly have. It challenged my belief that my 20 year old sewing machine was 'good as gold' and a new one would be no different.
Well on one side of the equation that is true. My trusty Bernina 1260 is still a great machine with another 20 years of dressmaking in it. But the technology advancements for quilters in the new machines are amazing.
So I decided to take a few new machines for a test drive.
Back in the day when I first got into quilting, we all lusted after the dual feed of the Pfaff that we could not justify. So I took a Pfaff and a few other brands for a test drive.  Then  I discovered that the 7 and 8 Series Bernina machines now have dual feed too! Wahoo!
And if that is not exciting enough there is this new thing called a BSR. What you might ask, is that?
Bernina stitch regulator. So for those of us who drop our feed dogs and do free motion machine quilting, this little gizmo regulates the stitch length for us. Amazing! I must admit that on first trialling it I did not enjoy using it. You have to make a mind shift away from controlling the speed of the machine with the foot pedal to controlling it by the speed you move the fabric. Once I got the hang of it I was sold! And the new machine still feels like the Bernina's I have been using for 35+ years.
Hence I have a new toy. A Bernina 770 Quilters Edition and it's wonderful. I love technology!

Monday, 31 July 2017

Nita Eileen

Nothing Gold Can Stay by Robert Frost
Nature’s first green is gold, 
Her hardest hue to hold. 
Her early leaf’s a flower; 
But only so an hour. 
Then leaf subsides to leaf. 
So Eden sank to grief, 
So dawn goes down to day.
Nothing gold can stay. 

Mum passed away on the 23rd April, in her 90th year.
Daily it seems that everything is still the same, but everything is different.

Sunday, 26 March 2017

i feel a quilt coming on

I began a hand pieced hexagon quilt some time in the '90s. However the fabrics I used no longer excite me - fortunately I did not get very far. I also made a small liberty quilt back then and the scraps from that quilt are just as timeless today as ever. Hence my plan to begin a Liberty hexagon quilt, something I can work on by hand for probably the next ten years and be confident I will still like it.


Visited Waihi on a stormy wet weekend.

Saturday, 25 March 2017

flower power

Not my best year in the garden, other things on my mind. But plants do their thing and even when you least expect it, amaze you with their beauty.


And here's the guy who wrote the song "My Hometown". The boss himself. Great concert at Mt. Smart stadium.