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The love of drawing - and a free stitchery pattern

free patterns reflections Jan 28, 2020

Over the holidays we closed the shop and I had time to relax a little. I always have to have something to do, and this year I spent time learning to draw on my new ipad. The result is this fun Mandala pattern which is perfect for stitching (or just colouring in!).

Since I don't have time at the moment to turn this into anything bigger I thought I would share it with you as a free pattern and I would love to see what you make from it. Will you put it into a quilt block, make a cushion or maybe a bag?

I am stitching mine up with a combination of Eleganza and Razzle perle 8 and Glamore 12 weight from Wonderfil threads.  These are great threads to use as they stitch so nicely and don't have to be separated into strands. The background is Manchester cotton from Robert Kaufman, which has a great texture.


I'm sure this adventure will take me somewhere quilt-wise soon!

Click here to download your free stitchery outline.


Mandala 1 Mono


Happy Stitching!



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Shifting Strata - when grey isn't just grey

It was time to go for a walk .....

The last couple of months have been so busy, I needed to take time out and stretch my legs. My quilt companion is Shifting Strata, a small quilt I made based on Wendy Williams' Crossing Paths pattern back in 2012. I named it after the Christchurch earthquakes. Here's my quilt


And here is Wendy's original


Given the recent shifting of the earth under our feet, it felt like Shifting Strata was a very topical quilt to bring. This was one of my first 'improv' style quilts, and also my first attempt at big stitch hand quilting. It was also one of the first to win me a ribbon, at the Capital Quilters exhibition later that year :)



Having done very little walking over the winter, I took it fairly easy this time. From Kiriwhakapapa campsite there is a loop walk that passes through a grove of redwood trees - these were planted way back before we realized that messing with mother nature is not necessarily a good idea. Now they make a beautiful...

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Nanny's Singer

reflections Sep 05, 2016

My uncle was a very keen photographer and his son (my cousin Phil) has kept and treasured all his family photos and slides. This week Phil posted this slide from the 1950's on his Facebook page.


As Phil says, the colours are so realistic in these slides that you could almost be in the room with them. I was so absorbed in looking at the images of, from the left, my Great Auntie Nance, Grandad and Nanny that I almost missed seeing the all- important Singer treadle behind Nanny. I expect she used it to make her 'pinny' - the only time I ever remember her without one on was at weddings.

I remember exactly where this photo would have been taken. The house was a tiny two-up two-down in Twickenham, and this was the back room. The door you can see led to the add-on kitchen which always smelled of coal tar soap and where you would find Nanny making yorkshire pudding batter in an enamel dish. Grandad would usually be found out in the garden, which was very long and where he grew his...

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