Wednesday, March 12, 2014

More hexies and another block finished.


 Another finish for 2014. Originally this was going to be a big quilt, a large wall hanging, but after sewing this many 1 inch hexagons and becoming very very bored with it, it's now more the size of a large table runner.   You will find this a recurring theme with me, I don't enjoy making big quilts especially one that is very repetitive. I have a very short attention span.




The fabric and pattern is very busy, so I decided on minimal quilting. I divided the quilt into four sectors and each area is quilted in a different colour thread. I used 50wt Aurifil thread in #1147  #2479  #5002 and #5005.




 For the binding I used a Kaffe fabric which I'm really happy with as it seems to blend into each of the different colours around the quilt.

The backing


I incorporated a couple of corner hanging sleeves into the back so I can hang it on the wall.


Quilt stats
1 inch hexies
Variety of fabrics from my stash including Kaffe, AMH, Amy Butler, Sketch and more.
Binding Kaffe Roman Glass


Another Circle Game block has been finished. 

I haven't pressed it properly yet, as somebody (cough cough) may have used a Frixxion pen when tracing some of the pieces. Frixxion marks  of course disappear when you iron them. Until this is sewn into the outer ring there is no way I'm pressing it with an iron.  It has been finger pressed in the mean time.




Friday, February 21, 2014

Cocktail Wednesday, Thursday, Friday...anyday

A little bit late coming to the party this week, but as I was under the weather on Wednesday night, Shay and I decided Thursday night was a good as any to enjoy a cocktail.

This week it was my pick. Moose Milk. I was introduced to this 13 years ago, I remember exactly when, because I was hooked instantly. It tasted soooooooo good. Shay was very very skeptical at first as the name didn't make her salivate and she asked me where the heck was she going to find Moose Milk in Australia. At least I think we'd have a better chance of finding that than finding some of the very strange ingredients in some of the cocktails from the good old U S of A.

There are 1001 recipes out there for this, basically it's ice cream mixed with three equal parts of any alcohol you see fit to put into it.  It's another alcoholic drink that I think works well with rum. It's strange because I didn't think I really liked rum, especially rum and coke, that's just nasty, but I've taken a liking to a few rum based drinks including this one and a Mojito.

The base recipe for this week's cocktail can be found here.  I opted to change out the Bailey's with Butterscotch Schnapps, as I don't see the point in putting a cream based drink into loads of ice-cream.  Some recipes say to add eggs, why?,  IMHO that is just plain outright weird.  

Another recipe with no quantities, so I opted for 30mls (1oz) of each and eyeballed the ice cream. Added all the ingredients into the blender together and voila a fabulous cocktail. 





This one is well and truly a 5 out of 5.   You can find Shay's take on this cocktail here.


Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Catch up Wednesday

It's Wednesday again.  Something special happened today, my baby came back and it's working like new. No tension issues and it's been purring it's way through some quilting. YAY!!!!!

I quilted the hexagon chevrons this evening, but you'll have to wait until tomorrow to see it. In the meantime I've been playing with waterlogue thanks to Liz at Broderie who put some beautiful photos on Instagram. I just had to jump in and get the app too. Here's a photo of my hexies as I was trying to decide how to quilt it.


As it's Wednesday it's also cocktail time. Last week I was away and forgot to make it beforehand, better late than never, I say!
Thea's pick was a Cucumber Cosmo.
Here's the ingredients, including the cucumber water in the bowl at the front.

Here's the result.

It looks like that because I could only find standard cranberry juice not white cranberry. I'm sure it tasted the same, just looked a bit, umm, dirty. It was good, and I will make it again if and when I can get my hands on some white cranberry juice.  A 4.5 out of 5 for this one.
I'm loving this weekly cocktail education. I very rarely drink these days, and I don't drink when I go out, I have to drive as there is no public transport around here. It's a nice way to be introduced to something that I possibly wouldn't order or try if I was out, but making them at home once a week has been a real hoot. It's nice to try just one, and I'm not really tempted to have more as it's mid week, and I don't want to be feeling the after effects the next day.

This week's cocktail - I have no idea what it's called as I deleted the email that had the info. However Shay face timed me and gave me the recipe, and I still forgot to ask her what it's called.
I didn't take a photo of the ingredients this week, but it involved a copious quantity of Kahlua, some ice, milk and chocolate syrup.  Instead of having it before dinner I deemed it perfect for dessert, and I finished it off pretty quickly. It was a little bit sweet for my taste, I'd probably reduce the chocolate syrup next time, and there will be a next time because it was very yummy. 4.5 out of 5 for this one too.
I think I need to invest in some different shaped glasses, the martini glasses are lovely but it's getting a bit boring using the same type of glass each week.

I'm off on vacay this weekend. I hope I will still have time to do a blog post or two while I'm away.  I might post some clues, so you can guess where I am. I will definitely be posting photos on Instagram.   My fur babies are going to be very happy, they won't be going to the kennels or cattery as they will be looked after by a wonderful friend who has offered to house and fur baby sit for me. I hope she knows what she's in for!!!!!



Thursday, January 23, 2014

Best laid plans

Lots of sewing happening at Chez Sunshine until Tuesday when my machine started having issues with the tension.  After playing around, trying to fix it, with no positive results, it's now gone in to sewing machine hospital. It was well overdue for a service and it's going to take two weeks, sigh. So after finally having my mojo back after misplacing it for most of last year, I now have to put my sewing plans on the back burner. Fortunately I have a few hand stitching projects to work on in the meantime.

I've finished 10 of the 38 orange peel/petal blocks. Lucky, I really love making these and I can concentrate on making a few more over the next few weeks. I'm doing the needle turn appliqué method so they are not fast but it's satisfying making these.

9 of the 10 I've finished


The Starflowers top is finally finished, full photos to come later. I really need to think of a new name for it.   I've also made the backing, lucky me, that was the last thing I sewed before the sewing machine called in sick. I still have to get down on the floor and baste this baby, my favourite job, NOT.  I was thinking about sending it out to be quilted but I would really like to hand quilt it. I could get a start on it while my machine is in hospital, although I'm not sure how easy or pleasant hand quilting is going to be with temps in the 30's and high humidity, yuck.


I've also been working on the hexies, slowly, very slowly, I sewed two today!

 Up until the last couple of days, the weather has been really lovely and I've been walking a lot and taking Karma for a walk each day too.
 There's always something to see on our daily walks.
Stand up paddle boarders.







Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Cocktail Wednesday- the first one for 2014

It’s my turn this week, and I would have loved to have chosen a Toblerone, they are so yummy, but I didn’t want to kill Shay.  You’re welcome Shay.
Instead I’ve chosen a Caipirinha, apparently the national drink of Brazil.

It’s pretty much just lime, sugar, crushed ice and a type of rum called Cachaça, pronounced Ka cha sa. If you google Caipirinha, there’s quite a few recipe variations, but I like the simple original one.  If you can’t find Cachaça, you could possibly just use a white rum like Bacardi instead, I think. (Not sure whether it would taste the same or similar, in fact I might just do a taste test this evening to check.) Edited to add, after two with the Cachaca, it's not going to happen, but you are welcome to try.  You can use raw sugar or caster sugar or anything in between. You MUST use a fresh lime, not lime juice, as you need to muddle the lime with the sugar to release the oils in the lime rind.
It’s a really great summer drink, which is perfect for today as it's damn hot  with roughly 10000000000% humidity. I kid you not.


Anyway, here's a photo of the ingredients without the ice as it would have melted by the time I'd taken the photo.

Note: The pineapple is not one of the ingredients!!!

The recipe

Ingredients:

  • 1lime, quartered
  • 2 tsp fine sugar
  • 2 oz Cachaça
  • crushed ice, not too finely crushed as it melts too fast.

Preparation:

  1. Place the lime wedges and sugar into an old-fashioned glass
  2. Muddle well.
  3. Fill the glass with ice.
  4. Pour in the cachaça.
  5. Stir well.
Note: Keep the sugar mixed in the drink by stirring often. I used quite a large lime so only added half a lime not a whole one.
The first sip and possibly the second sip is a bit like drinking rocket fuel, but persevere and you will be pleasantly surprised at how mellow it is after the first couple of sips.  



Recipe from  here

Cyril the parrot eyeing my drink.
This is a 5 out of 5 for me, a perfect summer pre dinner (during dinner, after dinner, what the heck, anytime it's hot) drink.



Thursday, January 16, 2014

Incentive

Im joining in in the FAL run this year by Katy of The Littlest Thistle.  I'm not sure whether this is a good thing or not, as I joined in the first quarter the last two years, only to fail dismally at each attempt. However, I'm aiming for third time lucky. I need an incentive to finish some WIP's, I work better under pressure and this year I can feel it in my waters. The year has started with a much more positive sewing vibe, and with my mojo still intact, I think I can achieve this very short list.


1. Starflowers.
The colours aren't correct in this photo, it's looking a little overexposed.
It needs another small border, then I just need to choose fabric for the final border, and make a backing, baste, quilt and bind, easy peasy, ha!

2. Table runner/wall hanging

I need to add a few more rows, and finish adding the half hexies along the edges. Then it should be a breeze to make a backing, baste, quilt and bind it.

3. Dresdens

Again, a couple more borders to finish the top. I've been procrastinating for ages and I just need to suck it up and do it. 


Although it's only three projects, it still involves three unfinished tops. I need to get my A into G if I can finish these by the end of March.