Have a Heart

Velvet and linen heart
Velvet and linen heart

Using the heart as a symbol of love can be traced back to the middle ages when it was being widely used by the C16th. When Valentine’s Day originated in England in the 1600s the heart was adopted as its symbol. These days, as well as being the symbol of Valentine’s Day, the heart motif is popular on clothing and homewares.

Why don’t you make one for your home? It’s an easy shape to draw and sew. Go to the internet if you need a template but I like the simple charm of a freehand heart. Cut out a back and a front from a fabric or two. I used velvet and linen. Stitch the front and back together (right sides facing, 1cm seam) leaving an opening (for turning) in one of the straighter parts. Carefully turn through the opening (you may need to clip the seams on the curves) and gently push out with a pencil or chopstick to get a nice heart shape. Fill through the opening with some polyfill and stitch closed. Attach a ribbon (or string or lace or whatever you have to hand) to the top, making a loop, and tie the ribbon tails into a bow. Embellish with a vintage button, an orphaned earring or a pretty brooch. Or simply leave it plain.

Take some inspiration from these hearts that I spied on Pinterest.

memory quietly stitching words





It’s been sew long

This is a journal of my sewing life. A place to record projects completed, a memory jogger of fabrics and patterns used and who they were for.
And when someone asks “but what do you make?’, a question not easily answered with a few words, I can proffer my blog so they can see my work. A picture being worth a 1000 words!
But my blog has been sadly neglected, what with this and that, so I have grabbed the opportunity to bring new life to my blog with Blogging 101.

Pinwheel Quilt
Pinwheel Quilt

Berry Quilt Show

Last Sunday my friend Bronwyn and I took the train from Bondi Junction to Berry to see the The Modern Quilt Show which was organised by the Wollongong Modern Quilt Guild. It was a really interesting and inspiring exhibition. Many more quilts than I expected. It was certainly worth the early start to make the trip. And it was market day so we had a look around there. Some lovely plants but didn’t really fancy bringing them back on the train. Also have limited space now that I am a balcony gardener.

I did buy a pack of fabric from Material Obsession. I am really inspired by the colours and have had them sitting on the sofa arm so I can admire and plan. I love them so much I have planned the whole living area around these colours in my head while they have been sitting there. Lots of things happen in my head but finding the time to make them a reality is another thing entirely.


We returned by train in the late afternoon spending some time in the waiting room at the station with a number of ladies (and one gentleman) who had also been to the quilts including a lady from Kiama who had won a raffle quilt and a lady from Hunters Hill who had exhibited her quilt. I have since read the MO Blog and there are photos of the show and the lady from Hunters Hill (Beryl) is shown with her wonderful quilt and the story of its inception.

The train trip back was really pleasant and Bronwyn was able to knit an entire beanie on the trip there and back. Can’t do that when you are driving! And I suspect it was not a lot slower than driving judging by the pile up of traffic at Gerringong. And at much less cost than I would have paid for petrol. We will be making more trips by train.

New York Placemats

I went to New York and when I was there I bought some fabric from The City Quilter. They have their own range of New York fabrics including some produced for the Centenary of Grand Central Terminal which is this year. In fact there is currently a quilt show there showing the best of the quilts made for the occasion. I wish I could go and see them. Instead I must be happy being reminded of my trip when we use the placemats ( every meal).


New York Placemats



And I have made them reversible with text and graphic prints for backings – also from The City Quilter. I would add the link but I am having difficulty doing this with my iPad. I left my laptop behind when I went away a couple of weeks ago and am struggling without it.


Elliot’s quilt

Elliot's quilt

This was made using colourful prints from a range designed on a locomotive theme. As a rule I don’t buy matchy matchy fabrics. I don’t do I? It somehow doesn’t satisfy my hunting and gathering instincts. But these really appealed to me and I had bought them for the stash. I wanted to do a quilt fairly quickly so I used them in a quilt of simple squares which I think made the most of the prints and colours. Some of the rolling stock couldn’t be cut into squares because they weren’t complete motifs as they were close to the cut edge of the fabric. But I managed to join them together into a strip which I used at the top of the quilt. Simply quilted around the squares then finished with a scrappy binding.

Ben’s quilt

Made for the baby of a sailing family, I based this quilt on one I saw in an old Australian Patchwork & Quilting magazine. It was called Night Fishing by Cynthia Nicklin.


With his name embroidered as the boats name and his birthdate as the sail number, I added ‘And I shall sail away to the land of Nod’ in the bottom right corner hoping that it would have a subliminal effect. (If it was just that easy!)


And I had it quilted by Sue of Sue’s Top Finish as I really wanted to get it finished and hand it to the new owner.

Quilt for Olivia

Another child’s quilt in simple squares with a scrappy binding. I am still having trouble with blogging. I am trying to blog from my ipad and iphone as my recent photos are on them. Seemed a good idea but when I look at the blog they appear quite different on the different devices. Not all the posts were appearing. But I am determined to make it all work!


A closer look


And the butterfly backing  –  a lovely Japanese fabric