Thursday, 30 August 2007

You´ve Got Mail

The last week has been like Christmas, the mailman being Santa... Every day one or two parcels on the mat. The patchwork party has begun! I´ve received my finishing kits, extra fabrics and 11 of the 12 blocks. One shop is still searching the map, where is the Netherlands, next to Denmark perhaps???? G.

Wednesday, 29 August 2007

Mom´s Choice

All´s rearanged by Mom.... Tell me what you think! All the bright pinks are removed, but for the heart of the quilt. With the suggestion to make the border pretty in pink... G.

Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Two Decades Later...

And we found ourselves another set of Aussie friends. McLeod's Daughters... with two great love stories Claire and Alex, Tess and Nick... currently filming the seventh season... although none of the original sisters remain...

One of the best lines: hey I am a station hand... he'd have been spade, decked and drenched.
That's Jodi for you.


Our First Aussie Friends

You might have been wondering about the 'Australian Outback' in our profile. Let me enlighten you at once... The Flying Doctors. The growing love between doctor Geoff and nurse Kate... had me hooked every Sunday night. You can imagine my despair when I found out that Geoff and Kate would be tying the knot while I was at university in the United Kingdom. Luckily I had a faithful pen pal to keep me informed... even got magazine clippings. Some fifteen years later I finally got to see the episode.


Dear Reader,

I think I may have been deceiving you. Let me show you my first attempt at sewing, dating back to the late seventies. I gather from this picture that I did not like rain. Although a vaguely smiling puddle?!?

Monday, 27 August 2007

Looking Back

Here´s some of my early work. First I was German-oriented then I turned French and later on I was addicted to Bobbies website "stitchingbitsandbobs" for my American leaflets with patterns. G.


What to do? Who can choose? or rather who can see the difference? I can!
I´m not sure which border to choose, I like the pink zinnia´s, but my customer wants the large fuchsia print with the orange background... I hate orange...

Little Miss T´s Birthday

A birthday is always celebrated with a Wilton-wise cake. These american cake pans are just great. M. brought this doll wonder mould over from a visit to the US. It had to be decorated in purple, as we all know, little Miss T´s favourite colour.
The dresses are a joint effort. M´s great tule underskirt is not visible, but so wonderfully made and it only cost her two (or three?) needles making it. All the straight seams are G´s signature stitches, and everything else is M´s super mom. You wouldn´t believe what she can do with a sewing machine, or rather, just look at the pictures and wonder....

Sunday, 26 August 2007

Plymouth's Progress

Finished my first house of the 'Plymouth Sampler'... notice the huge bird on top of the roof. I think the early settlers would have turned round immediately... because of the sheer size of the bird... had this been the right scale...


Saturday, 25 August 2007

Little Miss T.'s Quilt

Block layout for my first 'commissioned' quilt. Little Miss T. is quite the demanding customer who knows what she wants. I was quite relieved to find out she likes the fabric I picked. Fortunately her favourite colour features in the design as well: purple. I sense that she'd like me to get a move on... Please do not tell her that my sewing machine is 'fixed'... she still believes it is broken.
Any ideas for a matching pillow cover?


Palace Soestdijk

G. and I went on a guided tour of Palace Soestdijk a couple of weeks ago. Walked the grounds and saw the Palace from the other side of the fence... and from the back.


In The Year 2003

First project I started was 'In The Arms of an Angel' by Lavender & Lace. One of my favourite designers. I love the folds in the dress - solely achieved by using different shades, rather than using a lot of back stitching. Definitely sets her apart from a lot of the other designers. Also like the delicate 1 over 1 faces she designs.

Another favourite - hanging in my kitchen... cross stitch projects are scattered all over my house... none in my bathroom... just yet... - 'Family Treasures III' by Told in a Garden. Actually the same designer as Lavender & Lace. I call it my English Garden. It is stitched on a blue/gray Jobelan... an exception to my rule. I prefer high count linen.

Third project... 'Erzgebirgische Blumen Kinder'... cross stitch design based on the wooden figures from the Erzgebirge mountains in south-east Germany. I got a small Christmas angel when I was a child. My mother had to beg the lady in the household appliances shop to sell her one - the lady used them as Christmas decorations and hence they were not for sale. The pattern was bought via a German 'kreuzstich' shop G. found on the internet. This design features the Blumen Kinder. I'd love to own a Christmas pyramid with angels... one where the candles make the blades turn. I'd like to visit the area and workshops... one day. Look for more angels on


Wednesday, 22 August 2007

Moving On

The Dutch scene is finished. What to do now??? My sampler is almost finished! G.

Monday, 20 August 2007

Try Out

With my "baby" off to school, I had the afternoon to myself to try out this quiltpattern. It´s a Sister´s Choice block, to be part of a quilt for my sister. I discovered I have to be a bit more precise to make these blocks fit. I love the block, it´s flowery, starry and fun. I ran out of red fabric, so the block will return to the basket until I can visit the quiltshop. G.

Sunday, 19 August 2007

Tada!! - M.


Friday I suddenly felt... I need to start another cross stitch project. Although I said I would not start anything larger than 50 x 50 stitches for the rest of this year. Well, that did not last long.

I found this sampler at 'Needle in a Haystack' - a great shop in the San Francisco Bay Area. It's called 'The Plymouth Sampler' by Brenda Keyes. I've decided to stitch it with half a cross stitch, using 2 strands of DMC floss over 1 fabric thread. Fabric is 32 count, Antique tan by Wichelt.

The stitches are tiny... counting the stitches makes me cross-eyed...

This is what it will look like - hopefully. Started on the antique blue house in the middle. Love working on it.



I am into baking lately... my repertoire is limited... chocolate cake only. Yesterday G. brought the mixer she bought me - I had been using my parents' one. What a difference... I knew my parents' one was close to retirement... this one was rearing to go and created huge clouds of flour dust.... and I did not dare go past speed level 2... of 6! The size of my mixing bowl could have something to do with it as well.


Saturday, 18 August 2007

New Project?

I´ve been working on my sampler for days now, the Dutch scene is almost finished, so it´s time for some quilting.
Browsing the internet, I found this quilt and fell in love. It´s a "block of the month" sort of project where you have to order each of the twelve blocks from a different quilt shop. Each shop has made a different quilt of the blocks and it is this one that I fell for...

Now all I have to do is convince my husband I need this project and borrow his creditcard! G.

Friday, 17 August 2007

In The Beginning...

In the beginning... well, my very first cross stitch project, I must have been around 10 years old. A star sign kit in hideous colours, I do not believe I actually finished it.

My second attempt was while I was still at university... I'll admit... the early 90's. I saw two nice cushions in a ladies magazine (either Libelle or Margriet) and decided to make them. The cross stitch part - my mother finished them as cushions a couple of years later. Don't they look just like the original!

My third attempt, autumn 2002, got me hooked for good! I walked into a craft store and noticed a book with a cross stitch Christmas tree angel on the front... I'd always wanted an angel to top my Christmas tree and had never found one I liked. I bought the book (on discount), fabric and floss right then and there... and haven't looked back since... Again, my mother finished the angel.

Thursday, 16 August 2007

Baby Samplers

G: Our collection of babysamplers! The first, and loveliest is this one, made by M. for her godchild. I love the one over one babyface and of course the frame with the scotch bright (?) touch.

The second is my 2006 summer holiday project. I worked on it for two weeks in our cottage in Zeeland. Had to remove the hands of the clock because I couldn´t remember the birth time of my own daughter. Cute detail is the little bunny charm.

And last but not least, my 2007 summer holiday project. The baby sampler for my little niece. It´s called Noah´s Ark and a pattern of Prairie Schooler. I bought it months ago, and then my niece was born and her bedroom was decorated in the Noah´s Ark colours by my sister... It was a match.

Showing Off....

G: I´ve been busy with the camera and want to show off my season samplers. These German leaflets were all in Anchor colours and it took us quite some time to turn them into DMC floss. I´ve never worked with such radiant colours since...


G: Here´s a very long work in progress. I´ve been working on this sampler for over two years now. It´s supposed to be finished in April for our wedding anniversary. The last few days I´ve added the little bikers and I´ll move on to the cow and windmill tonight. It will be a "Dutch scene" when finished.

Wednesday, 15 August 2007

No Comment

;-) M.

Window Blind

My window blind is finished! Now I only need to find the right tool to hang it in my powder room... Please also notice my incredibly wide... ironing table. I cannot believe I lived without it all these years...;-)



Ok... I guess it is my turn to show some pictures. I am working on a biscornu... that I started on a trip to Chicago in February (one colour... easier to take on a plane and stitch while being squashed in a small seat).

The end result will hopefully turn out like the red one I finished last year - finished as an ornament. Both ornaments are from the Ackworth School Pattern Book. Also could not resist showing off my new scissors...

Tuesday, 14 August 2007

Quilting Course

G: I'm not very handy with uploading photo's, so now my husband's here I'll just post another quilt, please don't be mad, M. I'm not showing off, I'm just saving time!

This quilt was my very first quilting project. M and I started our beginners quilting course this spring and had so much fun. We decided right then and there that this would be our first and last hand pieced and quilted one. It just takes too much time... We didn't just by our first sewing machine for nothing..

First Post by G.

M. is perhaps better with the words on quilting, I'll try to show my view on quilting in pictures.
Below you'll find my first bed quilt, made for my 10 year old son. As you can see, we live in a polder-village with a lot of wind, handy to show off the back of the quilt. This quilt was made with the wonderful fabrics of Laurel Birch. The pattern is from a back issue of "Quilt it for kids". The piecing was great work, the quilting was not... I found it terribly difficult to work the quilt through the sewing machine. I'll have to work on my quilting techniques, as my right shoulder hurt for over a week. I've finished this quilt only a week ago and am trying to find the courage to start the next... In the meantime I can work on my needlework sampler and watch some Aussie series on tv. Regards, G.