Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Making it Down Under

If you follow along on Instagram, you know that I was recently in Australia for a vacation with my husband, B. The purpose of the trip was mainly to see our daughter play rugby with her high school team (they toured the north island of New Zealand before heading to Newcastle, NSW to play a 15's game and 7's tournament). We caught up with them in Newcastle to see some great games, but unfortunately their 7's tourney near Sydney was cancelled due to all of the rain and flash-flooding.

I have many photos to edit and cull through before doing any tourist-type posts, but I thought I would start with a few photos of creative stuff I was able to accomplish on this trip (staying with a kind and generous quilty friend certainly helps to get your creative on when vacationing!).

Sewing in Oz 2017

I admired Lorena's linen dresses, of which she has several, made from fun fabrics. She'd used the Eva Dress pattern from Sydney design and fabric store Tessuti.  We made a trip to the shop, where I ogled the Liberty tana lawns on display (but restrained myself from buying). They have sewn samples of all their in-house patterns that you can try on! This is absolutely the best thing ever for someone like me who has major garment-sewing challenges. Most of the patterns are for light, lineny, flowy dresses and tunics. I purchased paper copies of their Eva Dress and Ola Tunic. The size medium Eva dress fits me and the size small (crazy!) Ola Tunic fits me. Here's the Eva dress that I made on Lorena's serger and Bernina, using MakerMaker linen purchased in Berry, NSW at the adorable Berry Quilt & Co.

Sewing in Oz 2017

I'm looking forward to making a second version next week without sleeves! I've got a gorgeous red and black crossweave linen/rayon blend that I think will be super comfy. The linen above needs a few good wearings and washings as I find the linen/cotton is a bit stiff.

While on this trip I did a bit of knitting (both on airplanes and on the couch in the evenings) and was able to finish a smallish Reyna shall that's more of a scarf. It's been blocked but I still need to darn in the ends before sending it to a friend as a thank you gift. I love the colour!

Sewing in Oz 2017

Before leaving, I gave some thought to the Vancouver MQG - Ottawa MQG mini-mini quilt swap that would be due shortly after I got home. I brought along a few EPP papers, thinking that I'd make something hexagon-related, but plans changed! Lorena had just returned home from QuiltCon with some of Victoria Findlay-Wolfe's new "snack sets" which are tiny acrylic templates for small piecing. I hand-pieced this little 8" quilt on the dining table, as well as on trains and planes. I've just got a little bit more hand-quilting to do on it.  

Sewing in Oz 2017

Sewing in Oz 2017

Sewing in Oz 2017

And finally, I had the opportunity to teach a workshop!! It was such a fun day and a total pleasure to see Cath and Danielle (two lovely Aussie quilters I'd met in Austin at Quiltcon2015), both of whom travelled a long way to attend.  Everyone was so kind and I think they really enjoyed their Speed Date with Improv!  Class was held in a renovated WWI hospital that now serves as a seniors activity center (you can see the wrap-around veranda where I'm standing in the dress pic above).

Sewing in Oz 2017
Here I am with Lorena (lorena_in_syd), Cath (cathmosely) and Danielle (petitselefants)

Sewing in Oz 2017
Our beautifully-lit classroom

Sewing in Oz 2017
Here's Monique (sharingthegoodstuff) with her fab improv elements. It was her first time trying improv work!!

Sewing in Oz 2017
All of the gorgeous women who sewed with me! What a fun day (fueled by delicious snacks prepared by Lorena - she really spoiled us on this trip with her generosity).

I am busily preparing for a 3 week teaching tour coming up quickly, so no promises, but I will attempt to get some proper Nikon-taken touristy photos up here for you at some point soon.  Lots of mad sewing going on. If it ever stops raining in Vancouver, I just might be able to take some pictures to share with you!


KaHolly said...

What a fun filled trip! Am just loving that shawl!

Sandi said...

Great read with morning coffee! Love the EPP!

Kirsty @ Bonjour Quilts said...

Glad you had a fun time! And Instagram showed great weather, which is always nice when we're trying to impress foreigners :)

SarahZ said...

So glad to hear about your trip! I had been wondering how/why you happened to be there, just all of a sudden like, lol! I look forward to hearing/seeing anything more you get time to share here! And I just love the bear print fabric!! Would love to know what it is....sometime! :)