Tuesday, 27 January 2015

Contemporary Quilt Challenge

I have decided to take part in the QGBI Contemporary Quilt Group Journal Quilt Challenge for this year.  The main criteria are that quilts must be 12"x6" and that participants have to choose to work in either landscape or portrait orientation and stick to it for the quilt we make each month, no chopping and changing.

I have opted to work in landscape layout and have also agreed some rules/guidelines with myself for the challenge.

1.  I will only use fabric from my stash (although I may buy threads).
2.  Some fabric from January's quilt is incorporated in February's quilt etc, to provide a link and some flow.
3.  The quilts are based on mood and seascapes.
4.  Each journal quilt will include some lettering, words or haiku.

January's quilt in progress is shown above.  The sea is dark and murky, storms have taken place and there is fear and sadness.  Roll on Spring!

Sunday, 25 January 2015

Sam's Birthday Party

Yesterday all Sam's favourite people gathered at the Rand Farm Park to celebrate his 7th birthday. 
Loads of smiles, cows, tractor rides, sunshine and cake, an excellent time was had by all, and, most especially, by Sam himself.

Saturday, 17 January 2015

Contemporary Quilt Group - 2015 Challenge

My copy of the CQ group journal has arrived and with it the details of this year's journal quilt challenge.  As a new member of this group I haven't taken part in the challenge in previous years but this year I am tempted.
The commitment is to make a quilt each month, 6" x 12", and to decide now whether they will all be landscape or portrait orientation.  My tendency is to start things with enthusiasm and trail off so I am giving themes and styles a lot of thought before I sign up.
When I did my annual new year tidy up in my sewing room I decided to use this wall hanging, made in 2008, to (almost) hid a multitude of sins in my room and so I could enjoy it again.  This is an early piece in my quilting life and full of a multitude of sins itself but I was pleased with it and still like it.  
Interestingly, I think if I was to remake it today I would do something very similar in idea, although it would definitely be hand quilted and have more stitchery than this has.  I know I was trying to do too many things with this piece, responding to a complicated idea rather than taking one part or theme to explore
This piece is, however, true to my likes, styles and techniques and I find it amusing that I have often concerned myself with finding my "style" when it's been there all the time!
So, back to the quilt challenge - watch this space!!

Sunday, 11 January 2015

Thank You

seem to have rediscovered both my blogging boots and my stitching slippers (if not my alliteration acumen!)
Today I started the sixth and last quiltlet inspired by NZ.  This, when pressed and stitched, will be the background for a piece based on a wonderful beach we visited on the Coromandel Peninsula, a place called Kuaotunu.

Today I want to say a massive 
to a small and very special group of people.  
These are the people who have stuck with me while my posts were few and far between;  who wrote lovely comments and continued to do so even when I didn't get around to replying to or even just acknowledging those comments and who stuck with Piece'n'Peace even though it seemed as if their own blogs had been abandoned by me.  
THANK  YOU, I really appreciate you all.

Saturday, 10 January 2015

Friday, 9 January 2015

Stitching Fish

Having survived a wild and windy night (although not as bad as in the north of the country and Scotland), much of it spent awake and thinking, I am working on my trout today.
My original thought was an appliqué fish, if I could ever get the design right, I even have some vaguely fishy fabric. Then, during one of those periods awake last night I thought of Angela Daymond, or, more specifically, of her Kantha Hare.  Let me explain...
Last time I did a workshop with Angela she was talking about two kantha stitch projects she had designed and made, the hare and a heron, and is considering offering as kits at FoQ.  She asked whether I and the other ladies at the workshop would be willing to trial the kits to help her get thread quantities right etc.  Of course we would!  So my thought process last night took me from appliqué trout to kantha trout.  
This morning I got out all my embroidery threads and made a cunning plan:
This afternoon, while the wind continues to blow and the rain is only a short time away, I am sitting in front of a lovely fire stitching my fish. Bliss, thanks Angela.

Thursday, 8 January 2015

Trout Stitching?

This is my fifth journal quiltlet from my NZ trip. I have just layered up the landscape ready for hand stitching, now I have to draw a trout.  I think it might turn out that catching one was easier than sketching one but I am quite determined. The inspiration for this piece was, of course, Lake Taupo and the stunning Tongariro mountain range beyond, plus those trout.

Saturday, 3 January 2015

Poppies and Drain Covers

Today I have been stitching and I also received a wonderful item of post - my poppy from the Tower of London installation, 'Blood Swept Lands and Seas of Red'.  I got goosebumps as I opened up the package and read the companying booklet.  While the poppy itself has been cleaned after its time in the moat, the stem and fitting have a poignant coating of rust from their time outside.  I was sorry not to have seen the actual installation, especially near Remembrance weekend when almost everybody I know was posting pictures of their visit to the Tower of London on Facebook and I was in New Zealand, the poppy is my "piece of history".

My stitching today has been a reminder of my time in New Zealand.  I have six small pieces planned reflecting different places I visited.  Three are hand stitched and ready to layer up and quilt, this is the fourth, in planning:

and stitched ready for quilting. 

Al declared this, "That's very precise.....that's really precise for you".  I think I'll take that as it was intended, not as a backhanded compliment, just recognition of a different style!  

The piece represents the capital city of NZ, Wellington, and the wonderful time we had there.  It is based on a drain cover.  Now, I first noticed interesting drain covers when I was in Japan, where each village or town area has their own design.  Then I saw the lovely covers in Wellington which I interpret to represent city, sea, mountains and bush.  A quick google proved that I am not alone, there are some very serious drain spotters (ouch, sorry) out there.

Have a great weekend.

Wednesday, 31 December 2014

Happy 2015

This wonderful picture, (from the Telegraph website), of fireworks on the Sky Tower in Auckland welcoming the New Year sums up all the hope of a new beginning.  May 2015 be a wonderful year for the World and for every individual in it.

Monday, 29 December 2014

Winding Up the Year

Shall I yet again apologise for erratic blog posts?  I seem to have got out of the habit, or have nothing to share!  So much so that Jean, one of my dear Indigo Sisters asked whether I had abandoned Piece n Peace.
So, here are a few things to end the year, before "that" post listing aims and projects for a new year!
I bought this needle case in a bric a brac shop and don't think I have shared it before.  It forms part of my decorations for Christmas but I wouldn't use the needles, I think they maybe past their best!

My fellow textile addict in Norfolk, Ros, was in South Africa while I was in New Zealand.  As well as doing some very wonderful work with a small community and their church she had time to shop and brought me home some splendid things.
This is a length of Shwe Shwe fabric cut and hemmed for use as a head wrap.
These are other pieces of locally produced fabrics and they are all gorgeous.  I am not sure how I shall use them as yet, I just keep stroking them and wondering.
Ros also bought me this vibrant bag, hand painted with a lovely elephant design.  I wouldn't like to risk damage to the design so I think I will make this into a cushion rather than use it as a bag.

I have finally got on with some stitching since returning from NZ.  Even though I have a journal full of ideas it took me a while to pick up a needle.  Maybe Christmas got in the way somewhat.  With only three weeks to "do" Christmas I was very glad to find that I wasn't entertaining at all.  DS David took us out for a wonderful pre-Christmas lunch, DD Sara hosted a splendid Christmas Day and Al's son is cooking lunch on New Year's Day.  I have been so lazy and spoilt that I think I might keep my fingers crossed that this year's arrangements become new traditions.
Speaking of Christmas at Sara's, I promised you Sam...
He had a great time and was overjoyed to receive the train tracks he wrote about in his letter to Santa.
And I love this picture of Saz, "Christmas Lunch....Done!"