Cats & Quilts - a match made in heaven... (except maybe those stubborn little clouds of fur that latch on to the fabric!)

Kitty Quote of the Day

I love cats because I enjoy my home; and little by little, they become its visible soul. - Jean Cocteau

Friday, August 12, 2011

Pilot's Frixion Ball Erasable Pens - Magic!

Quilt & sewing groups are a great place to find out about new tools to make our creative works even more fun. So are websites & YouTube Posts from great people like Jenny at the Missouri Quilt Company. She has made a video of all her favourite news things from Quilt Market.

Often these are tools that take awhile to reach Australia & can be pricy to get. Not so, with one little invention Jenny found. It is an erasable pen by Pilot called Frixon Ball. It is erasable on paper or card so great for sudoku, card crafts etc. On fabric is is just amazing. The girls in my group are using it for copying stitcheries & marking where to put applique with great results.

If you are like me & always extend a line too far or get the wobbles when tracing a stitchery design off a pattern then these are the pens for you. It comes in many colours, not that that matters because once you are finished with what you have drawn, ie stitched over it, drafted a pattern you want to change etc, then you just iron it & it disappears. See it all happen in Jenny's video.

Isn't it great! Now for more good news - you can get them in Australia at Big W for $2.88 a pen. If you are not near a Big W some newsagencies are stocking them for about $5.95. Well worth it at either price. If yours doesn't stock them, ask them to get some in. I'm sure Office Works & other stationery shops would have them too. I see on Jenny's website that in the USA you can get packs of these pens but so far I have only seen them sold as individually. Below is what to look out for in the individul packaging.

I know - I didn't need 3 but the colours are pretty & at less than $9, better to stock up ; ) There has been many a 'Ta Da!' moment at my Thursday quilting group as each member is introduced to the pens & given a demonstration of their magic. These pens even make ironing fun!

Happy stitching & tracing!
Tracee xx

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Another Perth Craft Shop Gone....

On Saturday 30th July Greenwood Crafts closed it's doors after 30 years plus. It did not have a huge stock of quilt material but was a mecca for craft tools, embroidery threads of many kinds and knitting wool and patterns. That's three shops closed this year that I know of.

I know how hard it is to balance your buying between buying online in Australia & overseas where you often get newer products, a full range of choice & better prices, and buying at local shops, keeping our physical shops around so when you want to see & touch a product you can &where you get great service & advice thrown in free.

I am the Queen of online buying & like to buy from my blog friends who run beautiful little shops online on a regular basis too. I don't feel too bad about it now as there are no dedicated quilt shops North of Perth, other than the chains of Spotlight & Textile Traders. If there were shops close by then I would buy with them too.

I do love to do classes with local shops & now travel up to an hour to do so. I also joined the Quilters Guild so will do classes in future with them. Also at every guild meeting, a local shop sets up a stand with pretty things for sale so I can support these shops without driving for miles to find them.

I did buy some lovely items at the Greenwood Craft sale where there was 60% off everything. Lakehouse Fabrics for $10 metre, bright dots for $4.00 metre, floss & tools & the most scrumtious 100% variegated wool for $2.60 a ball (& yes, I brought more than 1 ball of each!).

I don't know the reason why this shop closed but hope the ladies involved go forward to more fun things, success & happiness.

Happy stitching & knitting
Tracee xx

Tuesday Treasures

I'm not much of a gardener but this time of year is my favourite for plants as the Cyclamens are in bloom. So these little pretties are my treasures for today.

I love having these around the house & if I am really lucky I can look after them over the season when they die down & have them rebloom next year.

If you have a treasure to share today, please join in on Meldoy's blog, The House on the Side of the Hill.

Happy stitching & gardening
Tracee xx

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Val laird's All My Lovely Sewing Things

At last a beautiful project finished, on the wall & photographed!

I love Val Laird's patterns, so sweet, girly & filled with little reminders of the past that I love. This is my version of 'All My Lovely Sewing Things' that appeared in Homespun Magazine's Oh So Fresh Issue 12.2.

Most of this project is completed with a charm pack so there is no having to pick & coordinate fabrics - something I find hard. I used Breakfast at Tiffany's by Fig Tree & Co for Moda. Isn't it just so pretty. There is enough left to do another but I am making up another project using one of Gail Pan's new stitchery patterns at the moment to use up my pretty left overs.

The applique in the middle is gorgeous especially the little tape measure snail. He is my favourite little applique at the moment & my profile pic on Facebook too. I changed the quilting where the words are & instead of having swags over the words, mirrored the squares that are around each applique. I am very happy with the end result.

If you are not a follower of Val's yet, check out her blog & I am sure you will want to be. Val is having a 400 follower giveaway so it is a great time to go over there & win some goodies too.

The latest Handmade has a new pattern of Val's for a table topper called 'With Sugar & Cream'. Another sweet design (literally!) and I can feel my subconcious going 'you must make this, you must make this' - who am I to argue???

Happy stitching
Tracee xx

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Happy Birthday Dawn & Fav Song

Dawn is celebrating her big day so hope it was the best Dawn, Happy birthday. Dawn listed a link to her favourite song (lesley Gore, Sunshine, Lollipops...) & asked what's your favourite song.

So here is mine. By The Grace of God, by Keith Urban. This has been my favorite for a few years now. And just to set the record straight, I saw his potential long before you did Nicole!

So what's your favourite song? Join in on Dawn's blog 'As Sweet As Cinnamon'.

Happy singing
Tracee xx

Monday, August 1, 2011

Tuesday Treasures....

My little Tuesday Treasure this week is a beautiful crochet rug my Aunty made. Over the years she laboured long & hard to make one for all the members of the family so must have made maybe a dozen at least. It is single bed size so lots of lovely granny squares. I received mine in my early 20s & carried it on the planes back with me as I flew from my home town of Nelson, New Zealand to Auckland, then on to Perth. It weighs quite a bit but I was snuggly warm on the flights :)

My mum had one too & as she has now passed, I (& Brutus) have guardianship of her rug for her. As you can see, when little Brutus wants a special warm hug from both his Granny & his Aunty, he snuggles up in the blanket Aunty made for mum.

To join in on Tuesday Treasures or see the links to all the posts, go to Melody's blog, The House on The Side of the Hill.

Happy Tuesday!
Tracee xx