A Liberty checkerboard quilt

I am yet to come across a single person who doesn't love Liberty of London Tana Lawn.  'Betsy' is a particulary beautiful tana lawn line, and Betsy in grey is probably my favourite fabric of all time (and that's up against some stiff competition!). I got this selection of Betsy in five colourways from the lovely Martina who runs Ava & Neve, a Brisbane based Liberty stockist with a comprehensive range and whom I will be collaborating with on a number of projects going forward.

I have a few things planned for this Betsy - first up was a postage stamp checkerboard quilt. I strip pieced the quilt to minimise cutting and for more precise results. There is a great tutorial over at Red Pepper Quilts that shows how to strip piece a postage stamp quilt - no need to cut teeny tiny squares!

It's more traditional to pair linen with Liberty lawn, but I was feeling adventurous and picked a crisp solid white as a contrast fabric, and to make the checkerboard pattern 'pop' a little more.

And here it is finished, diagonal quilted. It's a good size to use for display, as a doll quilt, or as a sewing mat (it's big enough to fit under my new sewing machine which has a super wide throat).

Hoop-La! Feature | 20 Facts About Me

I am in the latest issue of Hoop-La magazine with my 'Love Without Reason' embroidery! Hoop-La is a new UK magazine with a focus on contemporary embroidery, and a sister publication to Mollie Makes. If you haven't come across it yet, keep an eye out for it. It's packed to the brim with stitchy goodness!

My inspiration behind this embroidery was 'Mother's Love' so the timing of this feature is perfect with Mother's Day approaching here in Australia. The design itself is very simple, so even beginner stitchers should have little trouble with it.


Recently I got tagged on Instagram to share 20 facts about myself . Since I don't talk about myself much on the blog, I thought it may be fun to share them here too! So without further ado, here are some random facts you may not  know about me. The version I had on Instagram was the abridged version, I have added some more detail here.

1. I'm 42 and married with two kids, aged two (Alice) and four (Alexander).

2. My name (Sedef) is Turkish and means 'mother of pearl'. I love my name! Though I don't love having to spell it all the time.

3. Alice's middle name is Pearl, there was really never any other choice when it came to picking out a middle name for her (see point 2)

4. I was born in Turkey so Turkish is my first language. Though I rarely use it these days.

5. I moved to England for university and lived in London for almost 20 years before moving to Australia in 2009.

6. My husband is English, we have been together 11 years, married for 6.

7.  We decided to move to Australia after we fell in love with this country during our trip from London to Sydney, on bicycles. We cycled almost 25,000 km, raised over £10,000 for charity, and spent a year on the road during 2004/5. More info and pics can be found on our blog, Nuts on Bents.

8. I am not and have never been a cyclist, except that year of my life.

9. I am a qualified Chartered Accountant and in my previous life in London I was a Director at a big investment bank in the City (JP Morgan Chase), and a management consultant at Deloitte prior to that. I was a stereotypical City / finance career girl, living in high heels and sharp suits, permanently attached to my Blackberry and working 80 hour weeks. I am still working similar hours, but in my jim-jams from the comfort of my own home.

10. I am a self-taught sewing rookie. Bought my first sewing machine 3 years ago and learned to crochet 2 years ago. I love learning new techniques and trying out different stuff!

11. I can't eat raw butter, it makes me gag.

12. I am a closet computer game geek. I especially love point-and-click style adventure games, but enjoy shoot-em-ups too, which I am told I am pretty good at!

13. I hate insects, especially spiders, but don't mind snakes.

14. I am a bit of an OCD neat and clean freak, I can't stand mess around the house. So imagine how much fun I have every day, constantly tidying after two messy pre-schoolers.

15. My husband and I collect Lego. We have a large Lego city including all different types of buildings, and intend to start exhibiting next year.

16. I am not a morning person, so often stay up till early hours designing and sewing. Feel like a zombie the next morning. Repeat.

17. I leave everything till the last minute, I am a big believer in 'work expands to take up the time available'.

18. I watch TV in the background as I sew and go through full seasons of TV series in a few days. We just got Netflix and am currently on a Gilmore Girls marathon.

19. I am a Star Trek fan, especially Voyager. Even if my husband says it's the series where they let the woman drive the spaceship and they end up lost in the delta quadrant! Captain Janeway is my ultimate role model.

20. My biggest dream right  now is to get a craft book published, followed closely by designing my own fabric line.

And there you have my facts! Hope they weren't too boring!

A Crochet Apple

I ended up writing my own pattern for the cute apples I made to accompany my Pirum Parum pears (pattern by Tournicote). I am very happy with my apples' size and shape - I wanted them to look like a real apple with a tapered bottom and a dimple at the top, and just the perfect size to match the pears too. Using 8 ply (DK weight) yarn and a 4mm hook this apple is approximately 13cm tall from the bottom to the tip of the leaf. Roughly the same size as a real life large apple!

This sweet apple pattern is now available in my Etsy shop - it only costs $3.50 Australian ($2.50 US at the time of writing) so it won't break the bank, and is a good starter amigurumi project.

*** Please note: this pattern was available as a free tutorial in this post for a limited time, and is now available to purchase in my shop. I have made improvements and revisions to the pattern since publishing the free version, and the purchased pattern also comes with a licence to sell the finished apples ***


Bandit the Raccoon | Homespun Letters & Numbers

I am slowly working my way through Little Muggles' entire crochet animal pattern collection - Amy has so many cute ones still on my to-do list. This dashing little guy has been rather aptly named 'Bandit'. What a perfect name for a raccoon!

Bandit is roughly the same size as Chester the Fox (also by Little Muggles), which I blogged about previously. They make a very cute pair of forest friends.


I am in Homespun magazine again! The April issue is now in the shops, featuring a set of monochrome letters & numbers made by me.

There is a full set of letters and numbers, which are padded and have little neodymium magnets sewn inside (which are stronger than normal magnets), so they can be used on a fridge or other metal surface. There is a little 'Getting to Know' section as well which is my favourite bit in these magazine features. I was at the supermarket this morning and saw the magazine - had to really resist the urge to find my picture in it and wave it around to everyone shouting 'Look! It's me! I made this!'. Yup, lame is my middle name.

Until next time,

Easter Mini & Egg-hunt

I have been procrastinating over this Easter mini-quilt / wall-hanging for so long that at one point it looked like it wasn't going to happen. I changed my mind about the layout / configuration / colours / fabric choices so many times. Finally stopped over-thinking it, and just winged it. It's not perfect, and not quite the ultimate Easter decoration, but it's going to make a sweet addition to the mini-quilt wall in my sewing room.

I appliqued the motifs onto the mini using fusible-web, then hand-quilted around the perimeter in matching thread.

I made some crochet eggs as well, and used these cookie cutters for the motifs. I have turned the motif patterns into a PDF which you can download here.


The kids were very excited about Easter this year! Alice was sporting some suitably Easter-y bunny socks today. 

Our hunter-gatherers were set loose in the garden to find the hidden chocolate eggs and bunnies, and then enjoyed the spoils of their hunt.

I wish you all a very happy Easter with your nearest and dearest! Lots of love from my family to yours.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...