Saturday, 31 December 2011

:: so long 2011 ::

well hello there, we've been a bit quiet over here.  How was your Christmas?  We celebrated Christmas here in Brisbane, with my in-law-family, then drove down to Lennox Head on Boxing Day for a few days with my family.

We're back in Brisbane and celebrating a quiet New Years' Eve with more family - 2011 has been a rough year for us and a lot of our friends, due to the floods and all sorts of crazy ongoing health issues.

So I'm here to say - bring.on.2012. - may it bring great happiness, peace, contentment and good health.  And lots of sewing, if you are that way inclined ;)

Happy New Year       xoxo cat

Thursday, 22 December 2011

:: living the fridge magnet dream, oh yes ::

I wanted to squeeze one more itty-bitty bit of sewing in before I packed up the Bernina for its Christmas holiday/annual service.

What better project then, than Nova's very sweet 'itty bitty quilt block magnets' in Rashida's fabulous 'Zakka Style' book?

{{kickin' back, living the fridge magnet dream}}

I should quickly say, that I'm yet to finish the magnets - Nova's pattern is way better than the above pic would suggest - I'm just delaying the trip to the shops to buy a magnet-sheet until after the Christmas shoppers have all gone home - but I was loving these cute tiny blocks so much, that I couldn't wait that long to post the pics.   I should also quickly say - Nova has created SIX blocks for 'Zakka Style' - but I only made the nine-patch (twice) and the pin-wheel ... time was not on my side for any more tiny fun today.

I LOVED making these tiny blocks - fussy cutting the 1-inch squares for the nine-patches was very fun, particularly for the Happy Zombie Holiday Happy Santas - come on, how cute are they!:
{{here's the story, of a lovely Santa ... }}

As you can see, if you look closely, Nova's own itty-bitty quilt blocks are waaahaaaay better than mine - they use gorgeous linen and blue prints and even have sweet hand-quilted stitches:

Just so you can see just how itty bitty the blocks are, I took pics up against rulers - oh yes, in inches AND in centimetres, 'cos I'm thoughtful like that:

There will definitely be many more itty bitty quilt block magnets being sewn in the new year, when the Bernina returns, all rested and refreshed ((my husband cannot WAIT ... he is not a fan of the fridge magnet, but I will win him over with these)).

Three days and counting, jingle bells and Holiday Happy to everyone!    xoxo cat

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

:: is that pot hot? ::

pot-holders by cat&vee
pot-holders, a photo by cat&vee on Flickr.

If you've got a pot that's hot, I've got just the thing!

Two more pot-holders - both using Amy Butler lotus in the middle and Sherbet Pips, then between the two, some Castle Peeps, Tufted Tweets, Bliss and a sneak peek of (Harold the) pug fabric from Spoonflower - scroll down if you missed the pot-holder starring Harold front and centre.

Both have Appleville apples as binding and loopy-holder. And Amy Butler red/cream dots on the back.

Two more Christmas presents are now finished - and in fact, I think I have now finished all my Christmas sewing ... at least I've definitely finished with pot-holders for now, since I've run out of insul-bright batting and can't bear the thought of a pre-Christmas Spotlight trip to buy any more.

Four days and counting! xoxo cat

Tuesday, 20 December 2011

:: is it a doily? is it a placemat? is it a tablerunner? ::

So I've finished the festive Christmas placemats - one each, with just FIVE days to go til Santa arrives.   They're kind of big - in a table-runner / three-course meal kind of way, but hey, it's Christmas sewing, I'm not giving them away, and they are finished!:

My very favourite Christmas fabrics are all there - Happy Zombie Santas, Laurie Wisbrun donkeys and gumboots, and Alexander Henry owls:

I haven't measured them, but you could seriously fit a soup bowl, dinner plate and definitely at least a wine-glass (or cup of milk) all in a row and still have room for a smidge of dessert.

Don't they make a fancy backdop for this fabulous book which landed on the front doorstep today?  
I saw it on Nova's blog, and had to nip across to Fishpond to buy it straight away - I've had a quick flick through with a cup of tea, and it looks really great - lots of fun projects - can't wait to try a few.

And oh, can I spy a placemat beneath the nativity scene, making the ground a little more comfy for the sleepy sheep and cows?

Last pic - a wide shot of the placemats on the grass - let me just say that Teddy got NO closer than that - there was a lot of shoo-ing noises being made:

Happy five-days-and-counting .....       xoxo cat

Saturday, 17 December 2011

:: Secret Santa pressie-spoiler-alert ::

If you are my sister-in-law and your name starts with 'P' and I've drawn you for Secret Santa, then step away from the computer ....

.... at least until after Christmas .....

I drew my sis-in-law P for our Secret Santa, and she had asked for some nice body-products (which I DID buy, a very cute little boxed set).  But I wanted to also make something for her - finally using some fabric I'd bought ages ago from Spoonflower.  Two hours later, voila!!, I give you a pot-holder!!

The main fabric is in honour of my brother and sis-in-law's gorgeous pug, Harold:

{{oh yes, we're totally talking pug-fabric!!}}

{{the borders are all fabulous Laurie Wisbrun fabrics - Tufted Tweets and Urban Circus}}
{{and the binding is American Jane Wee Play, left over from Mrs D's quilt}}

The back is Michael Miller guitars:

I added a hanging loop, with a vague nod to the style used for the pot-holders in "Patchwork Style" by Suzoko Koseki.

I used two layers of insul-bright batting - I've never made a pot-holder before, or anything needing to be OK with heat, so I thought I'd better play it safe with two layers.

There were a few hiccups with the machine-sewn binding - but I figured I wouldn't stress, and just added a few zig-zag stitches here and there, and reckon they are really now total design-features of the binding.

I have to say - having never made a pot-holder before - I am loving it as a gift-idea.  Quick and easy and really effective.  The super gorgeous fabrics of course do help a LOT, as does that beautiful pug-face:

There are a few more things on the to-sew-before-Christmas list, but panic hasn't set in.  Yet.

Happy weekend to everyone, and happy Christmas-pressie-sewing.  And Merry Christmas P, if you DID read on!      xoxo cat

Sunday, 11 December 2011

:: deck the halls ::

A quickie post, to go with Vee's 'quickie' theme from earlier today.  How gorgeous is her new cushion! - I love that Echino fabric.  Scroll down if you missed it.

Here are some quick pics of some of the decs going up around the house - I'm thinking I'll be finished decorating just in time to take them all down again:

I know. The bird, rabbit and owl don't scream "Christmas". They're cute though.

focus on the bunting, not the rabbit {another rabbit?} and doll. 

my kids LOVE this nativity snow globe.  see how I shook it, just for the photo?
mental note ... move the Rob Ryan 'please smell us' vase AWAY from Jesus, Mary and Joseph ...

And here are our Kristen Doran advent calendars, made up from kits last year (and purchased here).  They're so sweet, and I love that the pockets are quite tiny, so there's a limit to how much chocolate can be squeezed in there - we're talking "Furry Friend" but no bigger.

Still haven't started on any 'home-sewing' - our church is having a little craft market next Sunday (just for our congregation, it's not an open-to-the-public thing) - so I've been making up a few little bunting sets out of some Christmas charm squares.  Will take pics when they're finished. 

Happy house-decorating, and happy Sunday      xoxo cat

...gotta love a 'quickie'...

We are having good friends over for an early christmas lunch today so with an hour to spare this morning I whipped up a 'quickie cushion' using these two gorgeous echino prints as a gift for their lovely daughter.

BBQ lamb, moroccan roast potatoes, beetroot dip and an exotic salad all on the menu today....with a few celebratory glasses of bubbly....will be very 'noooice' indeed!

Great music, Great Friends and Great food.....Happy days indeed.  xoxo vee

Saturday, 10 December 2011

:: on the 10th day of Christmas .... ::

... the decorations are finally making an appearance at chez cat.

The tree went up last weekend - but it's hidden away in the study, behind a closed door.  This is our first Christmas with Teddy in da house, and the kids were keen to keep the pressies and lower-branch-decorations free of teeth-marks, dog-slobber and general chewing destruction.

Teddy (looking here like butter wouldn't melt, let alone be chewed and ripped to pieces) has been included in the household decorations, courtesy of the lovely ladies at the dog-grooming salon:
{gorgeous though it is, the snowflake hair-clip is now history}

And here is what I can show you so far - our 'tulle tree'.  The light hasn't been great today for inside-pics, but since the tulle tree is portable, it took a little trip outside for some late afternoon shots.  The tree is Hart and Heim (Vee and I bought two trees online for our market display, but I can't remember exactly where we bought them, sorry), and the gorgeous little star decorations are Paper Boat Press, purchased at this lovely shop:

I'm hoping to do some Christmas sewing in the next few days - I've never made anything Christmassy just for us, so we'll see what happens.

Hope your house is decorated, twinkling and dog-chewing-free.     xoxo cat

Thursday, 8 December 2011

:: happy days are here ::

Oh how I love the school holidays.  Here are my top five reasons why: -

1. our kids are home!.
2. no school lunches for six weeks.
3. no frenzied scarpering around the house looking for school hats each morning.
4. no homework.
5. no rushing out of the house at the same time every morning.

My kids had super-fantastic teachers this year, we really hit the jackpot of teacherdom.  To say thank you, I made them each a little quilt.

Here is Miss B's, made from most of a Kate Spain Terrain layer cake, with Ikea sheeting for the back (I love those birds):

And here is Mrs D's, made from most of an American Jane Punctuation layer cake, with the same sweet bird Ikea sheeting for the back.  Vee and I both have kids in Mrs D's class, so Vee made a matching cushion:

I love the binding, all rolled up and ready!

isn't the cushion gorgeous?

We'll miss our gorgeous teachers - so that's the big sad part about the end of a school year. 

Vee hosted a fabulous lunch at her place today - champagne, delicious food, and lots of lovely chat with friends. It was a really nice way to end the year.  We even swapped little Secret Santa pressies - I do love a Secret Santa.  

As for tomorrow - after a slow start to the day, that will not involve making any white-bread-vegemite-sandwiches - it'll be on to kids' movies, playdates, a bit of sewing, and hanging out at home.  And some panic-pressie-buying.  

Happy holidays     xoxo cat

Saturday, 3 December 2011

our store offline until early 2012

Yesterday afternoon there was a lot of 'ho ho ho' and general end of week good cheer (yes...that would be a 'Friday arvie playdate' ....and 'raucous would include the mums!)  

However, unlike yesterday afternoon I am not as 'wordy' this morning. Did consume one (or two or perhaps five!!) glasses of bubbles with cat and lovely friends yesterday afternoon. What a sensational way to end the week though.

I did get my daughters teachers present made which is the front and back shots of the cushion above. The lovely & clever Cat is ever so generous and has made Mrs D a quilt so I have decided a 'sort of matching' cushion would be a nice addition.

The gorgeous bunting you see above is a 'Rob Ryan' creation and I have strictly forbid cat from staring at it and admiring it too long for reasons that will reveal themselves soon!!

So...friends....we are taking a nice break over school holidays and will return in early 2012 with our new etsy store....we were very fortunate to have amazing support at our xmas market with some follow up orders so thankfully have 'not much' left to show for it.

have a happy and crafty weekend xoxo cat & vee
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