Sunday, 17 November 2019

I have a short bucket list of quilt related events that I would like to attend "one day" and I was able to cross one off the list in October when I attended Quilt Symposium Auckland 2019.  Quilt Symposium is a five day biennial event which is held in New Zealand (usually in a different location each time).  There is a good variety of workshops available featuring international and local tutors, a merchant mall, challenges and a quilt show. Amazingly the whole event is volunteer run, I cannot begin to imagine all the hours of work that go into making it such a success.

my partially completed applique block

I limited myself to attending a couple of classes and lunchtime lectures as I wanted to be able to have a decent look at the quilts, catch up with my family, and fit in a bit of shopping while I was in Auckland.

 the back of a block prepared for applique

As there was a possibility of catching public transport followed by a short walk to the venue I didn't want to be schlepping a heavy bag each day so I selected my classes with that in mind.   I chose to do a two day hand piecing class and a one day applique class as I thought the equipment requirements would be minimal (fabric, needles, thread, scissors etc) and I wanted a more social and relaxing type of class rather than one where I would feel mentally exhausted by the end of the day.

another block ready to applique, fabric samples at the top

Both the classes were enjoyable, I learned a few new tricks and spent three days in the company of other like minded quilters as we chatted and stitched away each day.

A mini symposium will be held in Palmerston North in 2020 and the next major Quilt Symposium will be held in Wellington in 2022, registrations will open in October 2020.

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Be kind to yourself

Was what my doctor told me as I left her surgery, she didn't want me to rush back into life while I was still feeling unwell.  Both the Mister and I had succumbed to a severe cold/cough type of infection and the only cure was to rest, keep hydrated and take it easy.

It has been almost three weeks and I'm only now feeling back to normal.  I haven't felt like stitching so have contented myself with lots of reading, plenty of Netflix and Amazon Prime and sleep.  I've been doing a bit of pottering in the garden when the weather has been nice, I feel so much better after I've been out in the garden.

The lemon tree is flowering, there are more buds than last year, so I'm hoping there will be more lemons next year (just 7 this year).  We are coming up to the warmer weather now so I think the challenge will be to keep to a consistent watering schedule so the tree can set fruit.

I enjoy having geraniums (or pelargoniums I'm never sure what to call them) in my garden, they are quite tough, don't mind the summer heat and are easy to grow.  Mine all grew from cuttings that I acquired from a few different gardens so I have no idea what sort they are  Once they start getting a bit leggy they just need a quick haircut and after a month or so they look like new again.

Tuesday, 29 October 2019


A short time when someone stops doing something before starting again.

So sorry I had intended to post but both the Mister and I have come down with a lurgy and I can barely lift my hands to type.  I will be back soon.

the latest magpie fledgling being fed by the dedicated father

Thursday, 24 October 2019

A little road trip

Well, hello there, I've been a bit slack (maybe a lot) on the blogging front this year, but we move on and adjust to the changes that life brings.

The Mister and I took a short road trip to Victor Harbor a few days ago.  We called in at Pennylane Patchwork well, actually it was just me that called in, the Mister sat in the car and waited, although I did notice as I left that there was a nice waiting area outside the shop, complete with magazines to pass the time.

These fabrics caught my eye and came home with me, I can see some fussy cutting happening with some of them.  The Karen Kaye Buckley 7 1/2" Multipurpose scissors jumped into my bag as well, I love the bright pink, hopefully that will make it harder to misplace them on my sewing table.

Thursday, 25 April 2019

Anzac Day 2019

The Ode

They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old;

Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.

At the going down of the sun and in the morning

We will remember them.

Lawrence Binyon (1869-1943)

Wednesday, 20 March 2019

Kaffe Nirvana

I've been working on this applique quilt off and on (mostly off) since 2014 (my best guess), and now that I have almost finished the other applique project, it is time to concentrate on finishing this one.

I purchased the pattern from Dawn at Collector with a Needle ages ago, it is a full sized pattern which is excellent as there is no need to fuss about enlarging the pattern.  I knew I wasn't going to be using reproduction fabrics, so chose to use mainly Kaffe Fassett combined with a Zen Chic fabric from the Comma range as the background fabric.  (the colour in the photo above is more true to life than the one below0

It is a fairly large quilt, 213cm x 239cm (84" x 94") finished, which includes a 30cm (12") outside border.  It is a whole cloth applique which makes it a bit awkward to handle sometimes.

 (bottom corner of the quilt)

I've been placing most of my pieces by eye and trying to keep it looking fairly symmetrical at the same time.  I seem to remember that my background fabric pieces are a bit longer than the pattern calls for so I will need to make allowances for that once I start on the top part.

Monday, 11 March 2019

A bit of cooking

I was gifted some eggplants earlier in the month and couldn't think what to make, but after flicking through my books found a recipe for Sesame Eggplant Dip in an Alison Holst book, a bit different from the usual eggplant dips and it can also be served as a salad or a relish. It was rather nice and I will be making it again, although the Mister thought there was bit too much chilli in it.

Sesame Eggplant dip

Still using up gifted produce and thinking about what to make with beetroot, I toyed with making a Chocolate Beetroot cake but decided to make Beet Ice Cream with Mascarpone, Orange Zest and Poppyseeds from my Jeni's Splendid Ice Creams at Home book (the recipe here). What can I say but YUM, the beetroot gave the ice cream a sort of a jammy taste. I used one really large beetroot and roasted it while I was cooking something else, it took ages to roast but was well worth it.

Cinnamon Doughnuts - I nearly forgot to take a photo of these, hence the bite out of it.  This was a recipe clipped from the paper which I have been meaning to try out.  I halved the recipe, it was quite easy to make, not having a mixer meant I didn't bother with the beating on low speed for four minutes part, I just made sure my butter was very soft and beat it with a wooden spoon for a minute or so.  I made a couple of my doughnuts too thick and they were a bit doughy (but still quite edible), these will make another reappearance but as a sometimes food.

Friday, 8 March 2019

Final update

I didn't blog about this quilt at all even though it was finished back in 2017 (although I did blog about this quilt) . If you follow me on Instagram (@mizrini)  I think you might have seen it appear a couple of times on my IG feed.

Sarah Upsized (aka Rhubarb Custard) came about after I had spent an afternoon playing around with different EQ7 layouts using the Sarah's Choice block as the design inspiration. In a traditional Sarah's Choice block, flying geese, half square triangles (HST) and squares are used to make the block, my quilt utilised HST and squares only which I put together in the form of a Sarah's Choice block.

The quilt features large scale piecing and block cropping  The block cropping was as a result of not having enough fabric to make full blocks. Large areas of negative space gave me the opportunity to experiment with my quilting.  I wanted the quilt to have a modern look so most of the quilting is based on lines and ghost blocks of the Sarah's Choice block, rulers were used for this quilting.  There are FMQ feathers in the patterned fabrics and a feathered area in the bottom left of the quilt. 

Can you tell I was very excited to receive two blue ribbons for this quilt at the 2017 Festival of Quilts Adelaide.   1st place Professional in the Modern category and Excellence in Domestic Machine quilting (it was quilted on my Sweet 16; the quilt is moved under the stationary needle).

The quilt was also accepted into the Modern Quilt Show Australia in 2017 but did not place.  After studying the quilts that were juried in at recent Quiltcons I realise that the style of quilting on those (primarily straight line quilted) is totally different to the quilting on Sarah's Choice. 

Sarah's Choice was also awarded two teachers ribbons at AMQF 2018 but time has dimmed my memory of the teachers names :(

I should have blogged about it while it was still fresh in my mind, a lesson learnt.

Thursday, 7 March 2019

2019 Best of Quiltcon will be in Adelaide 21-24 March 2019

We are very lucky here in Adelaide, this year at the Craft and Quilt Fair we will be able to view the 2019 Best of Quiltcon travelling exhibit.  I'm intending to take plenty of photos and blog about the quilts.

Last year the 2018 Best of Quiltcon travelling exhibition was at AQC in Melbourne and I travelled over for the day specially to see them, it was a long day but well worth the effort. I took a lot of photos but never blogged about my trip, these two quilts were my favourites in the display.

I really liked this one, it is a shame that most of the quilts had fold marks in them, but I guess they had been folded (and perhaps refolded several times) for some time before transportation and hanging.

After reading all the 2019 Quiltcon posts I've decided that I'm going to Quiltcon next year, it is a quilt show that has been on my bucket list since the first Quiltcon (in 2013) was held in Austin, Tx.  Coincidentally next year it will once again be staged in Austin Tx, so I have been busy researching hotels etc in preparation for my trip.

Tuesday, 5 March 2019


I like making challenge quilts, I think it is partially because they are small and reasonably quick to make. Our SA Modern Quilters group is doing two challenges this year, the first one is called "Let's Get Squared" and will be on display at the Craft & Quilt Fair, March 21-24  at the Adelaide Convention Centre.  The second challenge will be on display at Festival of Quilts Adelaide in July.

our challenge quilts hanging at AMQF

Last year our group had a challenge called: The Blue Line challenge, which was exhibited at the Australian Machine Quilting Festival. Part of the instructions were:

A continuous blue line is to be placed horizontally across the middle third of the quilt, the line can be straight or it can be curved or angled and doesn’t need to start and finish at the same point.The blue line can be whatever width you choose.

Each quilter was given a piece of grey fabric for the background and a strip of blue fabric, up to three other fabrics could also be used (either three solids or two solids and one print)

it was hard to get a decent photo of all the challenge quilts hanging together

I didn't take many photos of our quilts, but there are a few more on the SA Modern Quilters Facebook page (search SA Modern Quilters) although you will have to scroll down a bit to see them among the other photos.


I made two challenge quilts, Peaks and Check.  I wasn't totally happy with my first quilt - Check (and looking at the photo it could do with some blocking to straighten it out)  I was much happier with my second effort - Peaks, I really enjoyed quilting that one.