Tuesday 30 August 2016

52 Quilters - Week 27 - Fiona Forsyth - My Favourite Quilty Hang-outs

I tend to spend most of my time at home either in my sewing studio or sitting on my "soffice" - sofa/office - hand sewing:

My Sewing Studio
My Sewing Studio
My Sewing Studio
My Sewing Studio - view of the "Nut House" where my secret sewing squirrels congregate
My Sewing Studio - view of the "Nut House" where my secret sewing squirrels congregate
My Sewing Studio
My Sewing Studio
When I am not at home, these are a few of my favourite Quilty hang-outs:

Honeysuckle Stained Class & Patchwork - Bendigo 

My local quilt shop is Honeysuckle Stained Glass and Patchwork - which is owned by Nicky & Peter.  They have a large range of traditional and modern fabrics, buttons, ribbons, trims, DMC threads, Cottage Garden Threads, and other sewing notions.  Nicky is a modern quilter so she has a good selection of the latest fabric lines & is very knowledgeable.  If you lose me in the shop you will often find me in the Kaffe Fassett corner drooling over all the pretties!! Honeysuckle are a Quiltworx certified shop and they regularly run classes on the premises.


Honeysuckle Stained Glass and Patchwork
2 Havilah Rd, 
Long Gully (Bendigo) 
Victoria 3550 Australia

Opening Hours: 
Monday to Friday 9am – 5pm 
Saturday 9am – 12noon

Spotlight Bendigo
I often refer to the local Spotlight store as my second home - as I live less than 5-minutes away, I often pop in to get my supplies. Spotlight is Australiasias largest supplier of Fabric, Craft, Party and Home Interiors, with Superstores in Australia, New Zealand, Singapore and Malaysia.

Further afield - Ballarat is just down the road a bit from Bendigo :-)
Cotton Factory - Ballarat

My home away from home is Cotton Factory in Ballarat and I tend to go down there a few times a year.   Ballarat is "just down the road a bit" from Bendigo (it is 123kms south west of Bendigo - and it takes about 90-minutes to drive there). Cotton Factory is owned by Alison von Bibra (known affectionately as "#theAlison").  Cotton Factory is a small business in Ballarat with an aim to make craft available to everyone. They work with many independent Australian pattern and fabric designers to bring you some great goodies. Alison recently attended Quilt Market in Salt Lake City and she has access to all the products that are about to hit the market.  Here is a link to a previous article I wrote about Cotton Factory

Beyond these unassuming lime green doors lies lots of pretty treasures!
THE Alison - Alison von Bibra - Cotton Factory Ballarat

Cotton Factory
128 Clyde Street
(Cnr of Brougham Street)
Ballarat, Victoria, 3350, Australia
Opening Hours:
Thursday, Friday & Saturday
10am to 3pm
The online shop is ALWAYS open.

Cotton Factory Community Block Swap


A common theme when crafters talk about swaps, is how hard they are to organise, how varied the fabrics are (some chain store, some high quality fabric store, some Vintage) and how hard it is to manage when people don’t follow through. Cotton Factory is hosting a community block swap where you are guaranteed to receive your swap blocks.  The swap is open to Australian Quilters and Overseas Quilters and will work as follows:

All fabrics have been chosen by Cotton Factory. They include Carolyn Friedlander, Art Gallery, Jen Kingwell, Free Spirit and a range of well known, best quality, quilting cottons. For enquiring minds, the colour scheme is: mustard, teal, muted oranges and hints of citrus. Cotton Factory has partnered with Eye Candy Quilts to provide the pattern in your Block Swap Packs, at cost.  

Recapping key dates.
  1. To start, just purchase a Block Pack before the end of July 2016.
  2. Make your blocks
  3. Post your swap blocks such that they arrive at Cotton Factory by 31st August 2016
  4. Get ready to receive your Swap blocks later that same week (or early the following week – dependent on Australia Post, the Universe and the usual postal planetary alignment).
  5. In your own sweet time you make up your quilt. Keep using the hash tag #cfcblockswap, so we can all stay connected with your progress.
Sadly my Block Pack did not arrive in time for my 52 Quilters take over week however, Alison did give me permission to share some of her photos:

photo courtesy of @Cotton_Factory
photo courtesy of @katharine_von_bibra
UPDATE - this swap has since closed.

For more information about the #cfcblockswap, please go to:

Thursday 25 August 2016

Craft It Forward part 2

Last year I was a recipient in Nessa's Craft it Forward and I received a lovely hand made gift from her last May.  In turn I was to send a hand made item to the first three qualifying bloggers who responded to my promotion. Once they received their gifts they then agreed to host their own Craft-It-Forward on their blogs, and to send out a hand made gift to three different people within 12 months of receiving their item/s.

I only had two bloggers who qualified - Anne Boundy and Filomena Parbery.  I had until May this year to complete my gifts and I just slid over the finish line as May turned into June.

As Anne lives not too far away we caught up for lunch in the nearby town of Kyneton and I delivered her gift in person.  Filomena lives interstate so I posted hers up to her.

I knew that both ladies love Lori Holt fabrics & designs, and that Filomena also loves Bonnie & Camille fabrics.  My sleuthing discovered that both have a fondness for aqua and red.  I wanted to make a gift that was practical so I decided to make the "Stitchy Kit" pattern by Bee In My Bonnet Designs - Lori Holt.
The "Stitchy Kit" & matching Scissor Holder which I made for Anne using Lori Holt & coordinating fabrics.
The "Stitchy Kit" & matching Scissor Holder which I made for Anne using Lori Holt & coordinating fabrics.  Can you see the red Secret Sewing Squirrel button?

anneboundyWhat a day! Thank you so much @bendigolioness for my #craftitforward present! #loriholt Stitchy kit - ❤️ the little scissor keeper 😄 More pics on my blog along with your chance to be one of my Craft it Forward recipients 😍

The "Stitchy Kit" & matching Scissor Holder which I made for Filomena using Bonnie & Camille fabrics.
The "Stitchy Kit" & matching Scissor Holder which I made for Filomena using Bonnie & Camille fabrics.  Can you see the blue Secret Sewing Squirrel button?
  • sew_filomenaThank you so much Fiona @bendigolioness for my craft it forward parcel. As your card said. Yes I instantly thought what deadline had I missed, I don't remember ordering anything !!! Totally forgot about the craft it forward blog post. It was such a beautiful surprise. I love it all. ❤️ you are one super clever talented lady.

  • anneboundyIt's gorgeous! 😍❤️
  • bendigolionessI was the same when I received mine. I went into panic mode thinking I had stuffed up & missed a swap deadline & I was too scared to open it. I thought you'd have the same reaction 😂😂😂

  • I also included some chocolates and a few other items in each of their parcels.  I am looking forward to seeing what items the girls make for their Craft it Forward recipients!

Tuesday 23 August 2016

52 Quilters - Week 27 - Fiona Forsyth - My Influences

Inspire - to have an animating effect upon one's mind or emotions; to stimulate to some creative or effective effort; to elicit or create.

Who inspires me?  My tastes have changed as my skills have developed and I have found myself headed in different directions from when I first started quilting 3-years ago.  However when I sat and thought about it, I noticed that the majority of my work is centered around some of our fabulous local Australian designers, so I thought that I would introduce you to some of them.

Emma Jean Jansen

I have been a huge fan of Emma's for a number of years.  She's a Ballarat Girl (so is "just down the road a bit") & a fellow cat lover.  I have made "The Daisy Quilt" from her "The Linen Cupboard" fabric range; I still have "Harlequin Stars" and "Peace Quilt" waiting to be made and "Outback Blossoms" is currently on layby together with her new fabric range "Matilda". 

Jodie Carleton - Ric Rac

Jodie is a gem!  She is guaranteed to make me laugh until the tears stream down my face every time I see her or talk to her!  She is also a Ballarat girl (& so lives "just down the road a bit") and I have had the pleasure of meeting Jodes quite a few times now.  She is a school librarian turned toy maker & now fabric designer for Ella Blue Fabrics. I have made a number of her toy patterns for myself & for gifts.  Her "Cats Pyjamas" fabric range is my absolute favourite and I have made PJ pants from this range together with some other items.  Her newest fabric range "Bunny Trail" is totes adorbs!! 

Leanne Beasley - Leanne's House

I am yet to meet Leanne in person, but she is based near the Dandenong Ranges where I used to live in Melbourne.  Leanne is famed for her embroidery patterns (distributed through Creative Abundance) and she is now a fabric designer for Ella Blue Fabrics.  I have made up quite a few of her patterns including the BOM "Journey of a Quilter" and am 3/4 of the way through "Mrs Beasley's Sampler Quilt". I have also made her "Hearts and Happy Flowers Bag".   I still have her original "Leanne's House BOM" waiting to be made. I also have all 12 editions of her "Vignette Magazine"

Rosalie Dekker - Rosalie Dekker Designs 

(formerly Rosalie Quinlan Designs)
Rosie is one of the loveliest people that I have ever had the pleasure to meet!  I first met Rosie at Bendigo's Craft Alive in 2004 & I attended an Embroidery Masterclass with her.  I look forward to catching up with her each year when she travels up to Bendigo for Craft Alive.  I have sewn a number of Rosie's embroidery patterns & I have quite a lot of her fabric hoarded away in my stash. Rosalie has designed 7 fabric ranges and is now a fabric designer for Ella Blue Fabrics.

Four of my Faves courtesy of @EllaBlueFabrics
Jodie, Emma, Leanne & Rosalie

Jen Kingwell

I am a mad Jen Kingwell convert!  Last year I attended one of her classes which was hosted by Cotton Factory in Ballarat.  It was here that I learnt many of the techniques used to make her "Circle Game Quilt".  I am currently making "Georgetown on my Mind" and have more of her patterns in my sewing queue. Jen owns "Amitie Textiles" shop in Melbourne and she is now a fabric designer for Moda Fabrics.

Claire Turpin

I have to admit I have only recently found out about Claire Turpin Design but have fallen in love with her patterns.  Her "Kitty Cats" pillows are on my lust list; as is her newly released "Catface" applique quilt.

Thursday 18 August 2016

The Farmer's Wife 1930's Sampler Quilt - June

Here are my blocks for June 2016:

07 June - Block 27 - Dinah
14 June - Block 7 - Augusta
21 June - Block 33 - Farmer's Wife
28 June - Block 21 - Carrie

Tuesday 16 August 2016

52 Quilters - Week 27 - Fiona Forsyth - My Gallery of Quilts

Today I thought that I would share some of my quilts with you.  I only have a few larger sized quilts which are finished, so I have selected a sample to share with you.  I enjoy machine sewing; foundation paper piecing; hand sewing; needle turn applique; English Paper Piecing (EPP); and embroidery.  I am still not confident in Free Motion Quilting so most of my quilts have been hand quilted. A few I have had professionally quilted by Linda at Ladybug Quilting in Bendigo. 

Please click on the links to see more information about each.  Quilts appear in no particular date order...

Millefiori Mystery Quilt - pattern & fabrics by Sarah Fielke.  Machine sewn and appliqued by hand.  Hand quilted in Perle 8.  Photo taken in Maldon
The back of my Millefiori Mystery Quilt is a Drunkard Path Quilt using the same fabrics by Sarah Fielke.  Hand quilted in Perle 8.  Photo taken in Maldon.
The Daisy Quilt - pattern by Emma Jean Jansen.  Made from "The Linen Cupboard" fabric by Emma Jean Jansen for Ella Blue Fabrics.  Yet to be quilted.  Appliqued by hand.
Savanna Safari - made using Cotton & Steel fabrics.  Foundation Paper Pieced using patterns by Tartan Kiwi and Quilt Art Designs.  Photo taken in Kyneton.  Quilted by Linda at Ladybug Quilting.
The back of my Savanna Safari quilt features a leopard running through the grass.  Quilted by Linda at Ladybug Quilting.
Here's a close up photo of Mr Lion - a foundation paper pieced pattern by Tartan Kiwi.  Quilted by Linda at Ladybug Quilting.
The Circle Game Quilt - pattern  by Jen Kingwell.  Made from Kaffe Fassett fabrics.  Mostly hand sewn using a combination of techniques & hand quilted in Aurifil.
The Circle Game Quilt - photo taken in Echuca
Norma's Kaffetastic Kaffetivating Circle Game Quilt - a lap sized version of the Circle Game Quilt by Jen Kingwell made from Kaffe Fassett fabrics which I made for my friend Norma.  Hand quilted in Perle 8.  Photo taken in Port Melbourne
Four Squared Cats - pattern by Jodie Carleton.  Made using "The Cat's Pyjamas" fabric also by Jodie Carleton for Ella Blue Fabrics.  Yet to be quilted.
My completed Zesty Hexies quilt top (yet to be quilted).  Made up from way too many 1” hexies for me to count!
a close up of my Zesty Hexies top
a close up of  my Zesty Hexies quilt back 
Although not a quilt, I couldn't resist sharing my one and only bag with you.  The pattern is "Hearts & Happy Flowers Bag" by Leanne's House.  The front panels are hand embroidered and it is made from various Lecien fabrics and the "Hearts & Happy Flowers" fabric range by Leanne Beasley for Ella Blue Fabrics.