Thursday, August 08, 2019


My apologies for not blogging more when I had promised myself to blog more this year. But life has been busy and I can't believe we are into August already.

The house settlement went through  on 19 July and I can now say my town of residence is Morwell. The house I bought was in good condition but did need a brighten up with  a coat of paint and also needs some new appliances as the gas appliances that are there, look like they have been there since the house was built in 1950. So friends, and one of my daughters, have been helping me with the painting, and finally I have spent a few nights there, and the house feels good-  the sun comes up  through the  large windows in the lounge, I can see morning cups of tea, sitting in the early mornings as the day slowly starts it's whirr looking out that window, and other than the view of houses across the road  I can see hills in the distance and the chimney stacks of the power plant generators belching smoke. I have posted things that are going on on Facebook and Instagram ( the Instagram feed is at the bottom of the blog) but I thought I would share progress so far as it seems to have occupied a lot of my time.

The kitchen is not quite finished yet as a new stove will be installed and a range hood,  and the doors will acquire porcelain knobs, but already it feels so much brighter than it was and I can see this will make a lovely space to be in as it will be an eat in kitchen.

 The way the kitchen looked, and how it looks now after  some painting. I am not the best painter in the world but the room certainly feels much brighter and as the house was built in 1950 it actually has window sills so I can see a collection of greenery in the window! I have always wanted a kitchen with blue in it and I like the retro feel of the cupboards which were in good condition. The lino will probably be replaces with polished wooden floors. The tiles on the wall will stay, but the bench top will probably change as will the sink.

The loungeroom has also had a cosmetic makeover with painting and taking out an ugly laminated brown cabinet which was so well built we had to take to it with a hammer to break shelves as there was not other way of getting them out. The brick of the chimney was also covered int eh same brown laminate which made that loungeroom seem really dark. The Axminster carpet is in good condition but also hid good hardwood floors, so the carpet will come out despite it's insulating qualities, and the floor will be sanded and polished.

Before and after. The venetian blinds will also be doing a disappearing act, and I am thinking linen might make an appearance ( I just need to go to France and go  to Brocantes... it may have to wait awhile) I have lovely big picture windows which also have sills and may well turn into a jungle!

So we have been trying to get as much done as we can as my friends also have incredibly busy lives and after next week I should be there permanently. The paint takes longer to dry at this time of year and getting things done always takes longer than hoped for, but that said I feel we have made good progress as two of the bedrooms have also been painted. the other bedroom needs to have wall paper stripped and will be  a bit slower in changing. The garden also needs work and I can't wait to get some sort of vegetable garden going!

Things have been incredibly busy apart from the house. The organisers of the Craft & Quilt Fair asked if I would do sit and sew sessions at the Fair in melbourne in late July and offered a good space for a wall display. I had quite a few people come and sit and stitch including one young woman who wasn't interested in that stuff, but who stayed to watch a friend, and who eventually  agreed to sit down and give it a try- and who declared this was nothing like the stitching she had had to do in school, and that this was actually fun! She came back several times to check that the needles and threads she had bought were the right ones and the fabric- convert convert! I guess that is what those little sessions are about, making things accessible for everyone!

I had a lovely wall on which to display my work so thank you to Expertise events for the opportunity. I wanted to build a mosaic of colour and show a lot of the different work I have done over the last 7 years or so.

I have also finally got around to embroidering the little fish linocut I made whilst still in Europe. It is only small ( about  15 cm square) so there is a lot of stitching packed into the little space! I will have this print for sale soon or message me if you are interested. Cost is $7 inclusive of postage.

Berry Retreat
Next week I head off to the Berry Retreat which is on 17 and 18 August which is always a great fun event, and there will be some  great displays and inspiring teachers.  There will be a display of embroidered works entitled Lady Without a Donkey- several people have done some smashing embroidery on this linocut- and I am so looking forward to seeing them all. If you have embroidered one we would love to display it- so it would be best to send it directly to Berry or deliver it on the Friday in Berry ( set-up day)

I will be bringing some of the work of the women of Boneca de Atauro for display and sale, including wall hangings and rapin hirik bags. Will also be displaying  some of my own work and will have prints for sale and we can sit and stitch!

Teaching at Material Obsession in Sydney at the end of August
Then it is back to more house  decorating and gardening and then on 31 August and 1 September I will be teaching at Material Obsession in Drummoyne- hand stitching and embellishing and machine stitching. These will be classes showing the techniques and simply stitches I use to create the effects that I do. If you are interested in joining the classes contact Material Obsession as there are still a few spots available.