Thursday, December 24, 2015

Merry Christmas 2015!

It's the most wonderful time of the year...

Isn't it?!!

Well, can you believe there is only one more sleep till the 'big day'?!  Seeing as I haven't posted in such a long time, I took some pics today to share with you, I hope you enjoy them.  I love seeing people's decorations and each year I strive to make mine a bit more attractive than the last. There are a couple of blogs I follow because I love their home decor, they are Adventures in Decorating (I love the way Becca describes herself as having ADD - Attention Decorating Disorder!), and Dear Lillie.  If you love home decor and stunning photography - head on over for some eye candy!!

This little cherub and I made gingerbread a couple of days ago - it was so much fun!  I have perfected my gluten-free recipe, so from this year on we decided to make it a new tradition.  Yesterday we decorated the house...

We doubled the gingerbread recipe so there was plenty left over to make Xmas-shaped biscuits, too!

We had a week of stinking hot weather in Melbourne, cooling a little toward the end of Sunday... and the temperature is picking up again.  I'll cook a full English Roast dinner tomorrow so I'm hoping it's not going to get TOO hot!  I love cooking Christmas dinner, it's so special.  There will only be the four of us in our little family, but that doesn't mean that celebrations have to be small too, right?!

I truly hope that you have a wonderful Christmas.  It's not really about the decorations, or the gifts, or the Roast with all the trimmings... it's about expressing your love and gratitude for the people in your life who make a difference.  For me it is, and I believe it is for most people.  So whether you are among family and friends, or spending Christmas apart from the ones you love - I sincerely hope your heart is filled with the special magic of Christmas Day - whatever that means, for you. xx

One of the paintings I did many years ago when my gorgeous friend, Kerryanne, was local and giving decorative painting lessons.  It always brings back fond memories!

I hope you're enjoying the tour? x

I'm a thrifty shopper.  I purchased these two pieces of furniture a few months ago from Ebay, and then promptly sold the furniture it replaced.  A new look for next to nothing and no land-fill - awesome!

All but one of these ornaments are new to me this year, and again, I bought them off Ebay!  I was ecstatic to find the 2005 plate, not only is it beautiful but it represents the year my gorgeous Rosebud was born!  The trick with Ebay is to be consistently looking... trust me!

One of the vignettes in the bookcase.  Apologies as it's a bit blurry, but you get the idea.  The photo was taken this year at my husband's Work Christmas outing.  The company hired a park and put on fairground rides, free food and drink, plus a raffle and other entertainment, it was a super day albeit rather toasty in the humid heat of the day!

This cheeky cherub has been wishing the day away!!!  We have been watching Christmas movies and singing carols together... currently, it's 8pm so not long now until we put on The Polar Express (as is tradition in our house!) and then it's time to hang the stockings... put out the milk and gingerbread for Santa, a carrot for the reindeer... and then off to to the land of Bedfordshire!  

This year is super special because it's our first Christmas shared with our newest member of the family, Asha.  This sweet fur girl came to live with us in March, following my desire to adopt a rescue... there were two dogs we trialled that didn't work out and they have found their purfect forever homes... but sweet Ash is ours for keeps!  She is an amazing sister to our sweet Kayla, pictured below all curled up next to my feet during the winter!!

It's time for me to spend time with family and put on our traditional movie now.  Thank you so much for popping in for a visit, I wish you a wonderful Christmas, and a Happy New Year!

Much love!
Vikki xo

Friday, September 25, 2015

Two quilts finished!!

Here we are heading towards the close of another calendar month... I swear, each year flies by quicker and quicker, like a well-walked path!  But my path has been both pleasurable and memorable, as I hope, has yours?

August was a month of family celebrations for the SUDs household, which I'd love to share more of in my next post, but for now I thought you might like to see some finished projects?  I completed two quilts within a week of each other (don't be too impressed, I actually started the latter one pictured close to two years ago!!)  But hey - it sounds so much better to admit to two close finishes - so we won't dwell on that!

In late August, my nephew and his fiancee welcomed their first baby in to the world, little Lily. I'd promised my three nephews that I'd make them a quilt for each of their first-born, and if they didn't have any children then I'd buy them a pipe and make personalised carpet slippers - You know, just so they didn't miss out on any keepsakes! (wink)

I started designing, stitching and piecing Lily's baby quilt a couple of months ago, as my nephew knew his baby was a girl and the name Lily had already been agreed upon.  I chose Leanne Beasley's first line of fabric, Hearts and Happy Flowers.  How I love those prints!!  I kept to a pink palette as the new parents had requested.

With one of Rosalie Dekker's prints thrown in for good measure!

The quilt has since been completed and is now wrapped around sweet Baby Lily (I'll ask my nephew's permission to post a pic of her - she's so gorgeous - do you love babies as much as I do?!!!) Unfortunately I haven't been able to have a cuddle with sweet Lily because she lives in England and I am on the other side of the world in Australia.  But at least I know that something I've made especially for her can be wrapped around her in the place of my arms.

It was challenging to piece with the stripes on the heart & stripes print - but that was all part of the fun for me!  I was very pleased with the quilt, but would probably choose to make it a wee bit larger if sewing it a second time.

This next quilt was made with a layer cake of Celebrate by Sweetwater & Co.  I just added some white sashing, and Rosie's favourite print became the border.

It was a quick and rewarding make, but I had problems with my sewing machine when it came down to quilting... the stitches skipped or sewed way too close together... so I got my machine serviced and started again.
The second time I made the mistake of stopping and starting the machining at each intersection between squares, which resulted in hours of my time spent pulling threads through to the back and tying off.  The look didn't add anything to the overall look of the quilting so it wasn't worth the effort.  But I did develop a whole lot of patience - Lesson learned!!

Next up for a finish is a sweet needle book project designed by Melissa Grant of One Day in May, called Daisy Dance (you can find the pattern here).  I've finished all the embroidery, now I'm cutting all the fabric pieces out, all good stuff!  The delicious mix of Tilda (TM) fabric with Cottage Garden Threads... yum!

That's just about it until next time... what have you been up to?
Warmest wishes dear friends!

Vikki xoxo

Monday, June 8, 2015

Belated birthdays!

There was a meme doing the circuits on Facebook recently which read, "I love you so much I'd use my best fabric on you!" A close friend sent it to me, and it gave me such a giggle.  True to her word, my girlfriend gifted me this beautiful wall-hanging for my birthday using her fave Japanese designer fabrics.  Isn't it exquisite?

The strawberries in my birthday cake 'icing' look delicious don't ya think?!

My sweet friend, Alisha, is such a cutie!  (Thank you so much precious girl!) xx

Do you have a favourite stash of fabrics that you don't know quite what to do with yet because you love them so much you don't want to cut in to them?  I have a stash of 'Far Far Away' by Heather Ross that I feel that way about.  Just waiting for the right project to come along...

But I digress!  It was my birthday in May but we had a flu bug doing the rounds in our family so I didn't really celebrate with friends until two weeks after the event.  My sewing machine was also unwell and I had it fixed over the Easter period, which was pretty busy for my local sewing machine shop...  it was so difficult to be patient when I was itching to get on with a new project!!   Hence, a belated gift to another close friend who is only a couple of weeks older than me.  Simone is an Aussie who believes she was born in to the wrong country because she has such an infinity with England. She loves the countryside, the history, but especially the Capital with its London buses... so when I found this fabric, it had her name written all over it!  It is called "British Invasion' and I purchased it from here.

Can you guess what I designed?

I'll give you a clue...

Simone has a beautiful family of four children and a hubby, so I designed a passport holder that holds six passports and boarding passes.

I didn't want to detract from the print on the front cover, but needed to secure the passports inside, so I matched the print on the flap with the print beneath so when the flap is closed it looks like the same image.  A magnetic closure works a treat.  To prevent the passports slipping out of the top of the holder I added a leather button strap.

Top left is a transparent vinyl pocket that houses a card with details of Simone's address (and a prayer on the reverse).  The top right pocket is for whatever and I fussy-cut a London bus to applique on the front as it looks so good on the polka dot fabric.  But then, what doesn't look good with polka dots?!

Inside is where the Parisian fabrics can be found (yes, Simone loves France too!)

So as my friend Alisha corrected me when I told her my mojo had returned, "Don't you mean, SEWJO?"

Yes!  That's exactly what I meant!  

Till next time!
Vikki xoxoxo


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