About Me

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I am a mother of eight and grandmother of four who loves to make and create. Rosemary Hill is the name of our home where we live, work, learn and create together

Friday 31 August 2012


Yes! I finished the secret sewing! I'm so pleased. Of course, it's secret, so no photos. Except this one of my son and his niece and nephew taken by Sophie. It seems ages ago (May I think). Isn't time flying this year? Well, I am off to tidy up (I am having some friends over to stitch tonight) and then sew up a storm!

My Joe with Grandson and Granddaughter

Wednesday 29 August 2012

Snow White

Lily as Snow White
It's literacy week at school and Lily wanted to dress up as Snow White. (Her friends said she had the hair for it!) She trawled through my clothes fabric stash and came up with all these fabrics bar the royal blue which a quick trip to Spotlight produced. And then she sewed it! That's the kind of costume making I like! I think she is quite pleased with the outfit. She started by making a muslin of the bodice from a pattern I had in the cupboard that was close to what she wanted. We fitted it to her, she is quite short-waisted which makes finding dresses in the shops that fit very hard, and she changed the sleeves and devised the skirt. I helped her with the fitting (so hard to do on yourself!) but she did the rest herself. Job well done I think, and it might even encourage her to have a go at making clothes for herself that aren't costumes. (That's not guaranteed! Costumes are just so exciting, the makers tend to get carried along by the excitement of a costume. Regular clothes, not so much.) I am still working away on my secret project. I am thoroughly sick of it now and I'm longing to sew something else. That desire to sew something else is the only thing pushing me to the finishing line right now. Hopefully I will have some not-secret-sewing to show you by the weekend! (When it will be September people! September!)

Saturday 25 August 2012

Another week gone...

Another busy week gone! I am working on a secret project here so there's not much to show for my busyness. There were some things of note this week though. It has been a cold winter, but last Wednesday we had a breath of spring. I have noticed some Southern Hemisphere blogs claiming spring was on it's way, but I was unconvinced. Until Wednesday. It was a glorious day of 18 degrees and the breeze felt just like spring. That wind is back to icy today, but I know I felt it last Wednesday and I can safely say spring is on it's way. Oh. And speaking of icy winds, I came downstairs yesterday morning to begin my day in my sewing room, and... The. Heater. Wouldn't. Work. Yup! I guess it felt spring last week and decided it wasn't needed any more. My Bradley is rejoicing (we got the gas bill a couple of weeks ago. It wasn't pretty!) but I am missing my ducted gas heating. So tonight, after a week of busyness, I'm going to have an early night. Bed is an antidote to busyness and possibly the warmest place in the house tonight! Goodnight!

Sunday 19 August 2012

Two and a half inch squares.

 Remember my Scarlett O'Hara moment this week? (fiddle-de-dee) Well, I had a bit of a think about these offending blocks (they are too small to make the cut for my do. Good Stitches group) and decided that they are not offensive at all, I just need more of them.

the offending granny blocks
So, in the spirit of more, last night saw me cutting out a whole heap more two and a half inch squares so that I can turn these cheerful blocks into a quilt.

pile, ready to sew

lots of squares
There are not quite enough little squares yet, but I ran out of night! (Pretty much night is finished at midnight and morning starts to happen at 12:01am - or so my son tells me.) Don't you love the spray glue and basting pins in the background of this shot? Like I'm just about to baste a quilt top or five. (Any minute now!) Of course, a new project is just what I need right about now. It's not like I have quilt tops backing up waiting to be finished or anything. Well, I am having fun, and that's what counts!

Saturday 18 August 2012

Pillow for do. Good Stitches swap.

 It seems that I get so very excited when I finish a swap that I forget all blog decorum and rush immediately to the post office to post said swap item. That's how it was with this swap, so I have had to 'borrow' Leanne's photos to show you what I made for her. (Thank you Leanne!)

A Vintage Modern and linen pillow
The back buttoned up

Of course, it didn't help that I was oh-so-very-late posting this. I seemed to be making it for forever. (It was being made during the great mojo-slump of 2012 - pretty sure this period will go down as that in history.) I was so glad to be finished, and I think Leanne actually likes it! So win/win all round!

Friday 17 August 2012

Do you like soft toy patterns?

 When my Jess (Mrs 28) came to visit us in June/July she designed and made some really cute soft toys for her kids to play with. She decided they were so cute she would write a pattern for them and put them in her etsy shop. So, if you like to make soft toys check out her etsy shop here. Brand new to her shop are her Gentleman Mouse and Gentleman Lion patterns.

Gentleman Mouse

Gentleman Lion

Of course, she also has her old favourites in the shop too, the dragon and sheep.

It has been a cold day today in most parts of Australia. We are all busy enjoying the ducted heating and our quilts tonight here as we snuggle up in front of the television! Don't you love Friday nights? Ash (Mr 11) has had friends over to play and we are all smug with the anticipation of the weekend! That means sleeping in for the teenagers and a day without particular responsibilties for the adults. What does the weekend mean to you?

Wednesday 15 August 2012

August do. Good Stitches blocks

I made these granny squares this evening and I think I must have been too tired or something because I have a sneaking suspicion that they are too small. Why did I trim? Anyway, I'm being all Scarlett O'Hara about them. (I'll think about them tomorrow!) They are for my do. Good Stitches Care group for Dolores. Aren't the colours lovely? You can check Dolores and her pretty colours out here. That's it for me. Bedtime I think! "Tomorrow will be a better day!" (Yep, still channeling Scarlett here.....)

Early Morning, Airport.

I got up at 3am this morning to take Sophie to the airport. She is visiting her sisters in Adelaide. I'm not really partial to such early starts and had to have a nap when I got home. (Well, it was still dark when I got home!) I am a little jealous of her because she is staying with some of my favourite people.

Some of my Adelaide people visiting Port Adelaide.
This early morning has seemingly rendered it impossible to accomplish anything today. I think I might just crank up the heater, put on a "house show", and stitch! (Gosh it is cold today here!)

Tuesday 14 August 2012

Quilt top!

Dallin's 18th quilt
 I finished putting the borders on this quilt top last night. I figured I would wait for daylight to photograph it and as you can tell from these photos there is plenty of daylight today! (Well, it has been pretty overcast and the sun popped out right at the moment that Maxim - Mr 18 - was available to hold it up for me! It is dark again now.)

without the lights in front of it
Dallin is a friend of my kids' and drawing a block for this quilt was a part of his surprise 18th birthday party. It has turned out to be a good size (73" x 54") and I am hoping to stretch and baste it today so that I can finish it off and give it to him! So that's now five quilt tops waiting to be basted. I think that tells you that I am not yet over my basting phobia! Must go practice basting!!!

Monday 13 August 2012

Button cakes.

Sophie's new Ikea domed cake stand, isn't it pretty?

Yesterday Sophie (Miss 26) baked chocolate cupcakes. And since I am now awesome at making buttercream icing (see this post) I whipped up some icing to go on top. (Seriously, my buttercream icing is delicious!) She also whipped up some fondant buttons to decorate the tops of the cupcakes. We are so into sewing here! Which brings me to the sewing activity for today. We went to Spotlight to partake of their 30% off sale. We went early, but it was still busy. We did get lots of fabric for a small amount of money though so all good! (For those who still have my "not buying anymore fabric" affirmation ringing in their ears, most of the fabric was Sophie's. - Yep! Another excuse!) So glad to be home now though and finally getting into the sewing room for today.

Sunday 12 August 2012

My sewing room...

I had Cath (check her out here) suggest that some of you might like a look at my sewing room, so this is the sewing room post! I love my sewing room. So much so that it has really taken over quite a large portion of the house. My sewing room is in what "normal" people would call the dining room. We do have a large eat-in area in our kitchen that we dine in so I figured this dining room would make a good sewing room!

the "sewing" side of my room with the door to the kitchen

the other side of my sewing room with storage paxes and computer centre

view from my desk through to the loungeroom

this cupboard of patterns is in the loungeroom, oops!

oh, and I do have these fabric cupboards in the entry

but it is a big entry!

and this is where I love to sit and work
I think I am quite envious of other people's pretty sewing rooms. This is a rented house so we aren't allowed to change much here at all. (Not sure if that varies in other places or not?) I just want to reassure you that I'm not really into apricot curtains. They just come with the house. I'm not sure how different this room would look if it was my house. Maybe it would be blue. Or blue and green. And I would have a hard floor rather than carpet. Nevertheless, it is a great space and I know I am lucky to be able to take command of such a large area within the house. My aim this year is to use up what I have supplies-wise and I was congratulating myself on what a good job I was doing when I began to realise that my quilting fabric cupboard was getting quite full. Hmm... if I am not buying more fabric how could this be happening? And then I thought about it. I have actually bought quite a bit of fabric, always rationalising it by thinking that it doesn't really count because I am really just making this quilt because my Bradley wants me to and so this fabric doesn't count. And this doesn't count because I just need a little of this AND it's on special (so not counted if it's on special!). And stuff bought online can't possibly be counted because you didn't even go to a shop! So, I need to keep my sewing room clean and use up the stuff I have. I noticed people de-stashing for the first time this year and thought I would do the same, but haven't been able to part with anything so far. Yep. Can't part with any fabric, but let me work on the said fabric for hours and hours, add in some expensive batting and some more fabric and I can probably give the result away!!! Ahh... I'm a complex woman for sure! I am off to bed now so I can have a great time in my sewing room this week!

Saturday 11 August 2012

What is it about fire?

sausages sizzling
 We love it here. It is a cold August night and the best thing the kids can think of doing is lighting a fire and roasting some marshmallows. These photos are from a fire they enjoyed during the week.

fun and frivolity
I managed to get my secret sewing finished today. I love having a tidy sewing room! I would love to show you the results of today's work, but I think my swap partner would not appreciate that. I love the thing I made and hope she does too. Hopefully she will received it on Tuesday so I will be able to show it to you then. So, what to do tonight? I'm thinking start a new project. We'll see!!!

Friday 10 August 2012

Buttons, do you have any?

I do. I thought I had lots of buttons, but now I'm questioning such a belief. I had a slow start this morning, but managed to get into the sewing room just after lunch. I am working on a swap today. It's a little bit secret and it needs buttons. Once I got up to the button part I confidently got out my lots of buttons. Hmm... I don't seem to have the right ones! It was a bit of a shock! So it looks like a trip to Spotlight is in order. For buttons you know. I have to go! See you later!

Thursday 9 August 2012

Block finishes for do. Good Stitches

Since it is August you might be thinking that these blocks are my August blocks. Not so. They are my July blocks. Deep shame here people, because they are meant to arrive at their destination on the 10th of August. Just not going to happen because they are going overseas to Karen. Sorry Karen! I have had a tough couple of months, but I am finally getting it together. (I promise to be better from now on!)

Just looking at these blocks in isolation gives you no idea as to what the quilt will look like. I must admit to feeling quite ho-hum about these blocks until I saw the quilt that inspired Karen's choice. You must have a look at Rachel's quilt  and block tutorial here. I just love that quilt! And any minute now I'm going to make one just like it. (It's on a loooooong list!)

So, I am feeling a bit better. (I have just been a tad miserable of late) I am sewing again. (Proof of feeling better!) My space is tidy and usable. Things are looking up! Hope things are cheerful at your house!

Wednesday 8 August 2012

We did it!

 Lily performed last night in her school concert. For some reason they had a no photo rule, but I did manage to quickly snap one photo, accidentally of course. Lily played the piano whilst her friend sang, played clarinet and bass clarinet in the Jazz Band, bass clarinet in the Clarinet Ensemble, and clarinet in her class performance. She was very nervous, but made it all the way to the end without crying or fainting! (Ok. That's never happened, but she gets so nervous she just feels it might.)

Lily accompanying her friend
And then today I actually finished clearing my sewing desk. Yes, I can hardly believe it either. Since I finished it I have done nothing other than stare at it. It could be that I'm awestruck, or it could be that getting home last night at midnight and into bed well after 1am is just not that conducive to creative thinking. So I'm off to stare at my clear desk some more and maybe think of what I will sew tomorrow. Maybe.

The said desk, with somewhat messy shelves. Can't have everything!

Tuesday 7 August 2012

Getting there...

My sewing room is almost there now. I did resist the temptation to sew and have been sorting and throwing things out. Phew! Can't wait to be finished and sew!

blue and green
Of course, that hasn't been the only thing I have been doing. I have had a resurged interest in pinterest of late and have been soaking up lots of inspiration there. One of my favourite boards at the moment is my blue and green board. I am just loving blue and green! I think I must have been loving it for a long time as the quilt above that I made last year shows. A year later and I am still loving it! Tonight we are off to see Lily (Miss 15) perform in her school concert. She is very nervous and I am nervous for her! (I have butterflies!) I will have to take lots of photos to distract myself!!!

Sunday 5 August 2012

August, and I'm a great aunt!

I am a great aunt! I thought that statement might sound boastful, but then I thought about my blog and decided that pretty much the whole thing is boastful (I like to think of it as sharing my good things!) so this statement would fit in pretty well here! Last week my niece had a little boy. He was four weeks early which was a bit of a surprise! He wasn't on my radar at all yet. He was early, but well thankfully! He is a darling little brother for my great niece, which means that I already was a great aunt!

1930's quilt
Being completely unprepared for his arrival I thought I might have to quickly whip up a quilt for him. Then I remembered this finish which I had no purpose for. Someone commented on my lack of purpose and said I should put it in the cupboard and wait for a baby who would need it. Thank you commenter, because that's what I did and now there is a Samuel who needs it. My Sophie (Miss 26) has knitted him a blue and white cotton cardigan and we will post them off tomorrow. My niece is a quilter, so she probably has already made a quilt for him, but extra rugs are always welcome for a newborn I think!

As for the August bit, phew! It still feels like May to me and I definitely haven't completed everything I had to do in July, but I'm working on it. My sewing has been pretty much non-existent for the last couple of months and my sewing desk had become piled high with all sorts of things, sewing related and not! Does that happen to your sewing area if it isn't used to it's fullest capacity? So this week I have been wading through it all and tidying and re-organising my sewing space. Finally I am beginning to see the light at the end of the tunnel. (Why do things have to get so much worse before they can get better?) Wednesday saw me make a trip to Ikea to buy a couple of shelves to put in some existing pax cupboards that just weren't working hard enough for me. It turned out that a trip to Ikea was just what I needed. I love Ikea and all the inspiration that is to be had there! (Let's face it. In my lounge/sewing room where I am sitting right now there are only two pieces of furniture that are not from Ikea, the piano and my purpose built sewing desk I got a couple of months ago.) Now that everything is almost organised the temptation to stop work and sew is very strong. Trying to resist! Must get finished!

Wednesday 1 August 2012

Are you into Retro/Vintage?

My son Joseph is. His interest started out by wanting to relive all things connected to his childhood. (I know right, how old can he be? I am barely any age at all! He began wanting to relive his childhood at 17, and he's 23 now so he's well into it!) He started spending a lot of time in secondhand shops as a result and has become interested in all things retro. He loves to find old phones and do them up so that they can be used again. (He has always had a passion for phones. He has had more mobile phones than a phone shop!) He began getting such a collection that he decided to sell some on eBay, and just recently he opened an etsy shop.

black phone from 1970

ivory phone from the 60/70's era

ivory bakelite phone from 1955
Yes, he has even found bakelite phones! They are all cleaned and wired for the current phone network so they can be used on any telephone line. So, if you are interested in having a blast from the past (they actually have bells inside of them rather than a digital ring!) check out his etsy shop.