25 August 2015

Three things

The three things I like this week just happen to be books. I haven't finished reading any of these but I'm well into them enough to know they are worth completing.

1. Edible City by Indira Naidoo

Oh, this is inspiring. Indira visits five Australian rooftop gardens and shares the stories of how they started and what they offer their communities. The book also contains growing tips, recipes, and beautiful photographs.

 
 

2. Jacaranda Wife by Kendra Smith

Kendra kindly sent me an e-book version of her novel so I've been able to discover that it's so much easier reading my tablet in bed than it is reading a print book! I think I might have been converted to ebooks for bedside reading.

In the novel, Katie and her family are transplanted from England to Sydney so that her husband Tom can take a job he could never have been offered at home. Katie's reluctant to go and, once she arrives, she feels isolated and lonely, as well as suffering culture shock. That's as far as I've read but I'm keen to discover whether her life changes again and how she finds her way out of this situation. It's always a good sign when I want to read on! 



 

3. Free Range Triangle Quilts by Gwen Marston and Cathy Jones

Those of you who are regular readers of my blog know I am a HUGE fan of Gwen Marston's work. It's no surprise, then, that any new book by her is an immediate must-have purchase.

If you want to know more about using triangles in quilts, this book is for you. It has plenty of photos of quilts - some antique, some contemporary, and some wonderfully liberated - to inspire you. Love it.

 
 

18 August 2015

Three things

To help me focus on the positive parts of life, here are three things I like this week.

1. My nephew. He's home for a month after his second year of studying overseas and it's been wonderful to see and hug him again. Yeah, technology's great but there's nothing like real face-to-face time with people, is there? Lovely.

2. Focusing on the detail. I love taking close-up photographs of plants, particularly flowers, showing the intricacy of their forms. When's the last time you looked close into the centres of  flowers? You will be amazed what there is to see!


This is a poppy from my garden. I love the softness and subtle pleating of those petals and look at all the stamens, ripe with pollen! Beautiful.


This one's a flower head of a spring onion that's emerging from its papery skin. There's still a way to go before it is completely unfurled and I'll be taking photos most days to capture the changes. Magic.

3. Planning an excursion. I'm looking forward to a viewing of the Labours of Love:Australian Quilts 1845-2015 exhibition with a friend in a couple of weeks. The Evolution, Change, Challenge Contemporary Quilt Exhibition will be on at the same time we will be visiting - yay! 

What things are you enjoying this week?

15 August 2015

Beginning to write

One of my treasures is my baby book. My parents collected ephemera about my life from the day I was born; things like baby photos, school reports, class photos, news clipping from local newspapers, university graduation programs. My mother recorded developmental milestones, such as my first tooth emerged when I was seven months old, my first step was taken when I was 12 months old. There's nothing unusual here; just the same sorts of information that parents everywhere like to recall about their children.

There are a few special fragments, though; special to me because they remind me when I started to love stories, and tried to write them myself.



This is one of the first stories I wrote and illustrated. I can't remember when it was and there's no date on the paper but my mother has noted that it was given a 1st prize and "entered in honour book", which is a lovely memory.

My story is obviously derivative of something I had read or heard and, even at that early age, I was drawn to flowers and dreams. I continue to spend a lot of time with both!

I share this with you today to remind you that, sometimes, whatever we long to do in our lives already has its seeds inside us. Recalling our childhoods can reveal the small things that we nurtured. I am grateful that my love of storytelling was respected and cultivated by my family so that I continue to write today.

11 August 2015

Textiles Tuesday

It must be the season for quilt and textile shows! I've heard of these five - here they are, so you don't miss out.












What else is going on? Let me know!

04 August 2015

Three things

It's been a challenge this time but I guess that's the point - to focus on the positive and not let the negative get to you. Here are three things I like this week.

1. Snow peas. Delicious straight from the plant, these crispy delights are prolific in my garden. I'm munching snow peas every day for two reasons: I love their flavour and picking them makes more develop! That's a win-win in my opinion.


 2.  Discovering there's more beneath the surface. It's been disappointing to discover this week that I don't really know some people at all. Seeing into their hearts has been illuminating and confirmed that I don't want to be tainted with their poisonous thoughts. That's the upside: eliminating them from my life. 

3. The Sydney Swans Football Club. I've been a paid-up member of this club for 20 years but have been supporting the team at games for many years more than that. We attended a pre-game club function last Saturday to recognise that. I love my red-and-white family and Saturday's banner shows why.


Enjoy your week, everyone, and keep looking for the good things in your life.




01 August 2015

My book of the month: August

Isabel Dalhousie is my favourite character of all those created by Alexander McCall Smith. I have been hanging out so long for this next novel in the series - this is the tenth - and now I'm so disappointed that I've devoured it.
 

Gentleness, kindness, and acute observations are all part of this series, as well as the minutiae of a loving relationship. It is a joy to experience. I suspect I'll soon be re-reading past books in this series, starting at the beginning again, if only to bolster my faith in good people. 

You can read more about this novel on Goodreads.

28 July 2015

Textiles Tuesday

Yes it is! Read on to see what I have gathered for you this month.

* Wow! Check out this photo of the Victorian Quilters' Quilt Showcase Best of Show quilt, A Journey to Nirvana, by Sugy Kim. Fantastic!

* If you're quick, you can enter your work in Art Quilt Australia 2015. Entries close 7 August.



* Did you plagiarize that quilt? - an interesting article about the fine line between copying other people's designs for profit  and designing your own work.


* Are you interested in owning your own quilt shop business? Here's a great opportunity for Sydneysiders: Cottage Quiltworks CQW at Warriewood is for sale.


* Did you know? Cotton + Steel Fabrics has a new blog.


* Do you know about Conversations with the Makers? It's a website where Glenys Mann asks questions of fibre and textile artists. Their answers provide insight into their creative practices. Always interesting.

* 15-23 August, Flight exhibition, Balmain NSW.


 * Another instance of a businesses selling illegally copied designs. Target caught ripping off design from Melbourne business Peaches and Keen for children's clothing.

* Here's a handy tutorial for anyone who wants to learn to do Tunisian crochet.

* 1-2 August, Camden Country Quilters' Guild exhibition, Camden NSW.
 

* Spoonflower's blog has a series of interviews with fabric designers. Here's an interview with Denyse Schmidt.

So there you have it - 11 links to follow this month. Don't forget to get in touch with me if you have anything of interest to share. I love receiving your email!