1st SAL.....Peg, Dale and I committed to stitching Anni Downs - A Gardener's Journal in March. I blogged about this on my blog thinking maybe one or 2 others may join us and lots of girls indicated an interest so I decided to start this blog where we can all encourage each other to meet the goals set along the way....March 2010 -March 2011...........
2nd SAL ......well so many of the girls wanted to continue on with another project and some new girls joined us and now approx 91 girls are stitching Natalie Bird's Tis the Season. March to Sept 2011...............
3rd SAL....many girls want to stick with the SAL so now we have moved onto Anni Downs Some Kind of Wonderful - My Favourite Things Quilt.......Oct 2011-Oct 2012.........
Where are we now.....
4th SAL 2013...is numerous smaller projects from the previous 2 books Tis the Season and Some Kind of Wonderful plus some projects from Red Home by Natalie Bird approx 60 ladies stitching together.........
2014 we had the year off..............
5th SAL 2015..........inspired to continue we are doing another quilt project.....Anni Downs newest quilt Natures Journey.....
6th SAL 2017.............A Holly Cottage Christmas by Michelle Ridgway.......once again the pattern is in an affordable book so it is easy for everyone to join in...........and you can raid your stash for the fabrics........or lash out and buy a the whole lot........this SAL will be run by Fiona aka Bubz Rugz and Raewyn........

Monday, December 31, 2012

Peg has accepted the challenge

 I have thrown out a challenge to Peg that we will help each other to get our SKOW quilt finished and sweet Peg has accepted.
Yipee i got all my second row sewn up today and Peg is starting back on hers tomorrow,come on Peg we can do it,thanks chooky for the push and thankyou friends for the encouragement,see you all at the finsh.
cheers shez xx

A fabulous start.........Devestating finish

I started today so full of hope. All my blocks are now completed. Sashings cut. Just working on putting rows together when my 15 year old son screamed "Mum, there's a fire!"

Yes, there was a fire. It went into the external wall, burnt the back of a fridge and went into the floor of the family room above.  Needless to say, my sewing plans are on hold.

We still have a home.  I still have all my blocks from SKOW. We are all safe. Power went back on about 3 hours after the fire fighters left.

So instead of my major night of sewing and getting over the line by the early hours of 2013, I'll be spending the evening with some still frightened children. I don't think I've ever been quite as frightened as I was today.

So, I'll be a few days before I can say "quilt top", but I'm going to get there. I'll be watching for the announcement of the new SAL and hope to be joining you all very, very soon.

Happy New Year everyone. I've known for a long time, but it was reinforced today, staying safe is the most important thing. So, wishing everyone a safe new year.



another year over ...

well sadly I haven't done much more on my blocks, still finishing off the tree's on my house block.
Chooky, thankyou so much for the push, push, shove, shove this year and do keep me on the side bar as next year is going to be a lot more organised for me and hopefully more stitching time also.
I would like to say Happy New Year to you all and congratulations to those who have finished their quilts, I am so envious as they all look absolutely beautiful.
Thanks again Chooky for the time you put into keeping us (or trying)on the straight and narrow.

Sue W

SKoW Continues

Well there is no way I am going to get my quilt top made up before the end of the year, just a few hours away.  But, I have made progress.  Most of the blocks all stitched now, just the friends block and the sewing block to finish the stitching on and all blocks made.  I do have a lot of the squares all cut to start joining, so I will plod along with that.  I am not going to rush it after all the hours I have put into stitching and I really want this to be the quilt it is intended to be.  One with love in it.

Here is progress so far with blocks....

I will watch from the sidelines at what the next SAL is, and I bet it will be a beauty.  Happy New Year to you all and of course happy stitching and quilting too.

Oh on looking at those photos, I have not put the cat's name tag on.... a wee job for tomorrow.

Thank you so much Chookyblue for all your encouragement and support for this SAL for everyone.  You are a star!


As Midnight Creeps Closer...

And as the last hours of 2012 wind down…there is absolutely no doubt about it… even if I cheated and used extra Northern Hemisphere hours…I’m not going to have my SKoW top anywhere near finished…so where am I up to?...

I don’t think I’ve posted the suitcase and bird blocks even though they were finished a while back…I changed the locations on the suitcase to places I've actually been to...that makes all the blocks for rows 1, 2 and 5…The house would be finished if I hadn’t gone and done renovations...just like the real thing they are taking way longer than anticipated!...the shutters are still being installed...

The rest of the blocks for rows 4 and 5 are in various states of appliqué/stitchery almost done to oh drat I forgot to back baste yet, so my SAL journey is going to pull off the road into the layby just before the border to keep working on SKoW and I’ll wave to everyone going on over the border to the next project...

So Chookyblue please keep me on the sidebar as I keep going on SKoW and I’ll be watching the next SAL from the sidelines and cheering everyone else on…thanks for all your efforts with the SAL, even if I couldn’t keep up my end of the bargain this year I have enjoyed journeying along with the other stitchers for the first three SAL projects…

Happy Stitching and a Happy and Prosperously Stitchy 2013 to everyone…

Jindi’s Cottage

~Gardener's Journal...back pieced~

Whew, made it to the deadline by the end of 2012 with a post on my progress but unfortunately not the finished quilt!!!
I'm still with A Gardener's Journal and I have done a pieced back with some of the fabrics used in the quilt...
I'm very happy with it and hope to get this sandwiched real soon...
like hopefully this week!!!!!!!!!

Thanks so much to dear Chooky (for running this fabulous quilt in Stitch-a-long) and to all the gals who drop by and leave comments of encouragement!!!!!!!!
~I have thoroughly enjoyed this journey~

And while I'm here I'd like to wish everyone a Happy, Safe and Peaceful New Year full of Love and Happiness and of course much Stitching.......Dzintra xo

Holiday sewing - Almost a rainbow

As much as you can have a holiday with a feverish two year old (8 days in and no answers), five of us in one tiny room, nil sleep and full-on days, I've managed to almost sew down my rainbow hill.

A while back now I was worried about these rainbow curves but happy to show they weren't as bad as I had originally thought (at least I don't think so). Happy Stitching all and Happy New Year.


Flower Block

Flower Block done!

Only Sewing block left. Then some stitching and rows together!!



Rainbow Block

Here's the Rainbow Block

Flower block next


Another block done

Next block is the Tree Block.
Now for the rainbow block



Another block done

Next block is the Tree Block.
Now for the rainbow block



I'm going to get it finished!

I'm back! The last two months of 2012 have been filled with dance concerts, end of year events, and then preparation for Christmas. Finally I'm back working on the stitchalong project.

Here are my latest two blocks.
Not great photos, but I need to get back to sewing. I have all my strips cut. Big progress will be made today!



I'm going to get it finished!

I'm back! The last two months of 2012 have been filled with dance concerts, end of year events, and then preparation for Christmas. Finally I'm back working on the stitchalong project.

Here are my latest two blocks.
Not great photos, but I need to get back to sewing. I have all my strips cut. Big progress will be made today!



I have been naughty

My SKOW quilt has been neglected, this is the stage that i am up to with my SKOW quilt,i need to get my act together as it is for my GD's 12th birthday on Jan the 10th,so more blocks will be prepared today,thankyou Chooky for the push a long,right i had better get going blocks to cut out.
cheers shez xx

Another Year.

I am still working on my quilt top. Chookyblue has been very kind to give the extra time to complete the project. I will not be able to complete my quilt before New Year's day. I admire all my fellow stitchers that have completed your quilts. Your quilts are beautiful. Please keep me on the sidebar as I would like to keep you updated on my progress. I have set myself a goal to finish my quilt by the end of January 2013. I  know that I cannot join in the next Stitch A Long because I have not finished this year's project.
I would like to thank you all for your support and encouragement over the year. I hope to join and partake in 2014 Stitch A Long.
I wish you all a Happy New Year. I hope you have a peaceful, healthy and blessful year.    

Happy New Year!

I can't believe... just a few days.  What a huge rollercoaster the past year has been! 

I'm still stitching away at my blocks (I'm at 3/4 done), but I could not complete the top by tomorrow night. I don't have strips listed on the sidebar because I'm waiting to cut out all those little squares after I've finished the main blocks (trying to use up those charm square bundles). I'm really looking forward to slow winter months here in Michigan to get this top done.

I've learned so much with this quilt - so ambitious to teach myself needle turn applique on such a large project, but each completed block has given me such a sense of pride at a time when I need it most.  I also love seeing your completed blocks - you've helped broaden my horizens and stray away from a fixed pattern.  I also love your color choices and the stories behind them.  I'm looking forward to seeing your progress through the next project also....

Chooky is an amazing leader.  She has made it clear all along that unless the top is finished, one can't participate in the next round (and I fully understand that - this blog is about working together and completing these lovely quilts).  Chooky (and all of you) have been so amazingly supportive - this blog has been some a comfort in a year of turmoil.  Chooky, please keep my name on the sidebar - I will continue to work on my SKoW (it's my priority project) and will let you know when I have updates for you.  Thank you for your patience!

Hears to a happy, healthy New Year, my friends!

Elisa in Michigan

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Update of progress ...

Although I wish I could be “standing up there” with all you diligent ladies who’ve finished their quilt to at least their top (Major Congralulations to the ones who’ve finished … especially if I haven’t yet congratulated you!!), I am unfortunately *not* going to be one of you.  This past year has been an insane rollercoaster of heath issues, emotional fragility at times (aka apathy &/or depression), and a host of family and personal issues … leaving me lacking in the having-finished-my-SKoW-quilt department, despite my desire to have it completed.

At last update (beginning of November), I had … 
  • 7 blocks completed,
  • 7 prepped for needleturn,
  • the rest of the blocks’ background fabrics cut out along with their corresponding pieces of pellon,
  • and all my pattern templates & guides prepared for use.

Since then, I have been able to complete the needleturn on all prepped blocks, and finish the stitchery for five of these … with two (the ‘presents’ and ‘sun’ blocks) to complete.

** The stitching on the "hot chocolate block" is finished ... just a hiding in the shot! 
I am currently down in Adelaide for a couple of weeks holiday with my mum’s parents, so I am a touch restricted on the amount that I was able to bring down to work on while here … especially since I’ve started back in with my uni over this past month, with an assessment due yesterday (done), and an another (1500wd essay) due Friday coming … so I’ve had to be realistic on what I might be able to can achieve while down here.

As I have the full third & fourth rows to work on (plus one on either end row … sweet things pavlova, and chair wine & cheese), I decided to go with those in the third row (house, “gardening” flower garden, tree to sit under, and rainbow) and the ‘shoes’ block.  As I only had a half hour to collect everything together, I have also only gathered up the background pieces (already cut), and a collection of fabric choices (separated in little baggies) in addition to my small cutting mat, 14in ruler, rounds of threads and pencil case of cutters & pens.

I am determined to, at the very least, have the basic pieces on the blocks, and the needleturn begun … Dawn, can you guess what I’ll be working on @ the sewing group next Tuesday?!!! LOL!

I am determined that this will be my first “big” finish this coming year - and preferably in January … though, realistically probably in mid-February.

I am looking forward to seeing what Chooky has decided to select for the coming SAL.  I’m sure it will be perfect - and that I’ll probably join in ‘sidecar-style’ *wink* once this one is finished.  Thankyou Chooky for *ALL* you've done to encourage us along this project ... and thank you for deciding to continue the SAL - it really is inspiring to see everyones progress!!

Still going

At the moment I have a sick little girl on my lap.  Her temperature is 39 degrees C, and she refuses to have any medicine to reduce it.  She's been whiney and unbelievably clingy all day - I should have known she was unwell.  Instead I just got annoyed.  Now who's feeling stink!

Now to the SAL.  Well, I haven't finished yet I'm afraid. And I must confess that it won't be completed before the end of the year.  Please don't remove me from the blog though Chookyblue - I am still working away at it when I can.  I started cutting the strips yesterday, so I am getting there, albeit very slowly.

i must go and tend to my little angel. It's 9.30pm and I'm sweating like crazy under her hot little body.  I think it's going to be a long night.  Yay.

Best wishes to everyone.

Ta Da

My finished Some Kind of wonderful Quilt

and the back showing the very basic
in the ditch quilting I did

needleturn appliqued, machine pieced and
machine quilted

It's Finished

After spending the day quilting my SKoW quilt ( with a houseful of 6 noisy children) I have spent the last 4 hours sewing down the binding and as soon as I wake up later this morning I will take a photo as proof.

Can I know 2013's plans now Chooky, please.....

Saturday, December 29, 2012

It's Quilted

and the binding will be stitched down tonight, I am not going to miss out on the 2013 SAL.

I'm finished....just in time for the New Year.......

Wow what a thoroughly enjoyable epic journey with this Some Kind of Wonderful quilt. I would never have made this quilt if it weren't for the Stitch-a-Long group, so I take this opportunity to thank our Chookyblue for the tireless effort I know she puts in for us all......mwah.....thankyou.....

So....here it is......Ta Da..........there's 2 piccies as they both vary and decision making has never been my strongest point!!!! This one looks all quilty........
 ....and this one shows the applique better......
 ...........a close-up of the quilting.....I tried to quilt it as close to Anni's original as I could on my home machine.....the trusty Pfaff.......some vines and the odd flower.......I am happy with the result.....

I am very pleased to have completed this quilt........I would always feel like I had disappointed myself and others, especially Chooky if it remained incomplete for too long.......so I am waltzing into the New Year now.................
Cheers to you all, I have loved following along with everyone's progress.....
Sandy........Shiralee Stitches

Finishing 2012 with a finish

Well girls, finally I can join those of you who have made it onto the finished list for the first Stitch-A-Long.  Here is my version of A Gardener's Journal, stitched and pieced by me and quilted beautifully by Leeanne of quiltmekiwi.

Thanks to Chookyblue and all the Stitch-A-Long girls for the encouragement, motivation, and inspiration that you all share so willingly, you all helped me get over the finish line on this one.  Thanks for the friendship and  fun we've all shared again in 2012......... and I can't wait to see what's in the pipeline for 2013.........

Till next time............ happy stitching............. Nicky  x

Thursday, December 27, 2012

end of 2012.......

As Christmas is over and the end of the year draws near I do hope this pushes you along to meet your final goals.

I will be clearing the slate so to speak at the end of the month so if you would like to share your progress before I do that then jump in quick and share a post.
What I will do after that is when you are ready to do a post i will keep some spots free for the stragglers and give you membership to the blog and you can do your post then off again. 

But I have finally made the decision on 2013. Yes I will be going ahead with 2013. I hear a big sigh of relief from you all....... I'm pretty sure my assistant "whip cracker" will come on board again and back me up when things get a little busy. Not that I have heard from her yet BUT I have just sent out an email to the 24 SAL girls on the sidebar who finished the 2012 SAL. 
2 have just responded with a yes so I think they like the plan.

I won't share it here yet but I will on Jan 1. So if you want to join in get stitching on your old SAL's. 

Come on Nicky do we have a bound GJ yet?????

2013 will be much more achievable then 2012.

Keep Stitching......

Monday, December 24, 2012

Merry Christmas.....

To all the wonderful bloggers who have been part of the Stitch-a-long blog I hope you have a wonderful Christmas.......congrats to those who did finish...........
Don't give up if you haven't finished............
But I will be clearing out the blog membership at the end of the year so get some progress up before I do that..........
Happy Stitching 

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Friday, December 14, 2012

Happy 12-13-12!

I'm at this moment plugging away at my blocks! Woot!

I'm WAY behind because I had a chance to make extra money to help with my heating bills & car repairs this winter (I'm down to one job right now), and that had to take precedence.

I have no more side jobs until after the new year, so, for the first time in months, I'm sitting down & working on my own stuff!

For the first time this season, I'm really feeling in the holiday spirit! Sitting here with my feet up, in my flannel jammies, with Ginger purring next to me, and stitching away! If I look to the left, I can see my very beautiful Tis The Season quilt taking pride of place.

Sigh. Life is grand.

Thank you for keeping me inspired - my heart was with you even if my hands weren't!



Tuesday, December 4, 2012

SKOW Stitch Along- Whew, Finished!

Hi All
Below are pics of Laura's quilt. She has finished her quilt and below are pics and the email she sent to me.
Laura has changed quite a few of the blocks.........enjoy
Laura thanks so much for sharing this with us...........

Hi Chooky,

I wanted you to see that despite starting late (Feb)  Super Storm Sandy and other life curve balls I have finished.
My first stitch along, my first needle turn, the biggest quilt I have ever made AND that I FMQ myself. After quilting the strips as I went along, that final " when all the strips were sewn together" FMQing,took longer and required more stamina than I thought it would. I was determined not to get discouraged and the "deadline" kept me at it.
Thank you so much for pushing me along and getting it done. I have so enjoyed every- one's quilt interpretations and comments.
You are an inspiration of kindness and impetus.


Friday, November 30, 2012

Finished SKOW - a little late

Thanks to Chookyblue and the encouragement of all the other bloggers, I have finished my SKOW quilt - its a little late, but only a month so it's not too bad.

I added a label - something I know we should all do but I often don't unless it is for a gift.  I I used the  "Sunshine on my Face" block for the label, since I had already stitched it before I decided not to include it in the quilt.

Don't ask me why I didn't pre plan the wording and spread it around a bit more -
obviously too much on my mind and not paying attention.

I have found the monthly deadlines so motivating - although I didn't get the work done every time and could have posted a lot more, I did end up pretty much on schedule.

And once more - a HUGE thank you to Chookyblue for all the work she does.

I am going to put photos of each block over on my blog - on a separate page "SKOW".  You may need to wait until after the weekend - it's going to be a busy one.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Ta Da - At Last

Finally, I have a completed Some Kind of Wonderful quilt to share.
I finished it at a quarter to twelve the night before our blog meet last Saturday. There was no way I was going to front up without it being finished.
I’ve really enjoyed making this quilt. There was one stage in the middle of the year where I wondered if I would actually get it done, but then I had some time and got a wriggle on.
My friend Val did the quilting. Lots of free hand feathers.

She outlined the appliqué beautifully.

Look at all those feathers.

I’m not sure which is my favourite block, but I am rather partial to the suitcase, which was the only block I tailored to suit me. I just have to make sure that I do visit New Zealand in the not too distant future.

Thanks Chooky for the inspiration and the occasional whipping. I would never have attempted, let alone completed this quilt otherwise.