Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Travelling around OZ Quilt Project "Insanity"

Sorry, my blog posts have taken so long to post, but travelling these long distances in the Never, Never (Outback Australia) we have had lots of challenges in communicating with the rest of Australia mostly due to the isolation of these areas and no internet coverage. But I've always got something to fill in the time, I grab my handy box of hexes and a spool of basting thread and a needle and I've got instant needlework. Even if I only get a couple of my hexagon's basted along the way, they all add up in the end as you can see!

We stayed in Mount Isa QLD for three nights then set off to Cloncurry for a one night stay. It was in Cloncurry that the Royal Flying Doctor Service was established by John Flynn's (who is on our $20 note).

Flynn's choice of Cloncurry was based on its proximity to the scattered pastoralists and the mining camps, all of whom were poorly served by any kind of medical services. Then we headed up to Normanton via the Burke and Wills development road. Normanton is located along the south eastern edge of the Gulf of Carpentaria. One of the more unusual sights of Normanton is the life-sized replica of a 8.6 metre saltwater crocodile named Krys, he was shot in the Norman River in 1957 by a woman.

The we headed for the Undara Lava Tubes, 190,000 years ago, mother nature created one of the rarest and most fascinating volcanic phenomena's on Earth, the longest lava flow from a single volcano, this massive eruption caused lava to flow more than 90kms to the north and over 160kms to the north-west, it is known as the Undara Lava Tubes. Undara is an Aboriginal term of "a long way". As the lava cooled, a crust formed that remained in place even once the lava flow had ceased and the tubes had emptied out. It was the cooling of the lava that formed the incredible Undara Lava Tubes. We are told, that on dusk, at the lava tube entrance, thousands of tiny insect eating micro-bats emerge from the darkness to find food which attracts Pythons and Brown Tree Snakes that hang from the trees and strike out at the bats to capture a meal.

Then across to Cairns via the Savannah Way, Gulf Development road. These Development roads were very interesting as the road is a single lane in some parts. That meant we got off the road if a big truck or a caravan was coming towards us.

Until next time happy quilting

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Travelling around OZ - Quilt Project "Insanity"

Hello, No quilting photo's, this is a catch up post on our travelling.

We turned off the Stuart Highway and followed the signs to Batchelor, a small town close to Litchfield National Park. Cooled off in a plunge pool at the bottom of Wangi Falls. Breathtaking place with amazing scenery.

Our next stop was Yellow Water (Kakadu NT) no swimming here, we did the wildlife and sunset cruise on Yellow Water Billabong

We saw numerous species of bird co-existing with crocodiles, as you can see this "salty" came very close to this Jabiru bird who was catching a fish for his dinner.

The sunset was a beautiful sight with the reflexions of the trees on the water.

On dusk the saltwater crocodiles take to the water looking for dinner.

The next day we got up close and personal with one of the local residents.

I was not happy to be this close to this big fellow, the dingy I was in was smaller than the crocodile by at least a metre....

At Cahill's crossing we watched the water level reverse it's flow, several big crocodiles gathered on the low side of the crossing and as the water level reversed it rose high enough for the waiting saltwater crocodiles to swim from on side to the other. It was exciting to watch them pass over the crossing one by one from the safety of the river bank.

On leaving Yellow Water we are crossing the boarder from NT into QLD.

I will try and post again soon.

Happy quilting until next time


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Travelling around Oz - Quilt Project "Insanity"

Still working on covering my printed 1/2 inch hexagons.

We visited Nitmiluk Gorge, (name changed from Katherine Gorge to the aboriginal name Nitmiluk Gorge which means "Cicada Country"), we booked the Sunset Dinner Cruise which took us down the first two gorges as the setting sun turned the towering sandstone cliffs to a glorious shade of orange.

Nitmiluk Gorge winds alone 12km of sheer rock cliffs, they tower more then 70m high in some places and consist of 13 separate gorges, which contain a maze of waterways sculpted from sandstone.

On the way back we enjoyed a class of sparkling wine and a delicious three course candlelit meal, occasionally stopping to admire natures rugged beauty as we cruise down the Katherine River under a thousand stars shinning brightly above us. It was an OMG moment.

Another popular way to see the gorge is to hire canoes but we are to old for that challenge.

Until next time, happy quilting

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Travelling around OZ - Quilt Project "Insanity"

Hello there again! This is mainly another catch up post on our travelling...so many things we have seen!

First off, we arrived in Fitzroy Crossing only stayed one night, we are here to see Geikie Gorge.

We booked the boat cruise and head off down the Fitzroy River to the see the magnificent sandstone cliffs of Geikie Gorge.

Our guide tells us about the history and we see the local freshwater crocodiles sunning themselves on the rock ledges....

Then we travelled to Lake Argyle, which has the coldest swimming pool I've ever been in.

Beautiful views as you can see its a lovely place to relax in the afternoon sun. Lake Argyle was created by damming the Ord River and formed a huge storage reservoir for the Ord Irrigation area.

It's the largest lake in the southern hemisphere, and supplies power the town of Kununurra.

We leave Lake Argyle three days later, our next destination is Katherine in the NT after parking up we visited the Katherine Hot Springs, which has a number of crystal clear pools winding through the trees with easy access.

Happy quilting until next time

Travelling Around OZ- Quilt Project "Insanity"

Good morning, I hope we are all happy Quilters.

My progress is slow but it's coming together nicely...."Insanity" as you can see I've nearly completed another line.

We have arrived into the town of Kununurra, which is known as the gateway to the Kimberley region. Kununurra has extensive waterways and rugged and breath taking landscapes. The Diversion Dam has 20 radial gates that are raised or lowered to regulate the water level of Lake Kununurra and maintains the water flow to the irrigation area (Ord River Irrigation Scheme).

Ivanhoe Crossing is a concrete causeway constructed as part of the original road from Wyndham to Katherine in the NT, due to the consistently high water levels the crossing is now closed to traffic, we didn't see any crocodiles but I am sure they were in the water.

At Wyndham we visited the Five Rivers Lookout at 330 meters above sea level the surrounding rangers provided a spectacular backdrop to Wyndham below.

Our Next stop will be Lake Argyle (still in WA) and then onto Katherine in the NT. Post soon.
Until then time, Happy quilting.

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Travelling Around OZ - project number one" Insanity"

This is the first of three project I've taken with me to keep me busy while travelling around Australia (OZ) This quilt for a very good reason is called "Insanity" there are 10,339 hexagons which I have pre-cut and are ready to be sewn together by hand.

I was given the pattern and instructions from a quilting friend who is doing the same quilt at our quilting group, it was originally published in the Australian Patchwork and Quilting magazine, Volume 16 No 6. Below is my attempt so far " Yes this is Insanity".

Yesterday, Monday we moved on from Sampson Point which was an ideal stopover to explore the Central Pilbara Coast. The town of Karratha which is home to the North West Shelf Project(Gas Plant)amazing place to see.

From the town of Roebourne we drove the 27kms on a dirt road to Harding Dam,

which has some dramatic scenery with the red Pilbara rocks contrasting vividly with the deep blue/green of the dam water.

Then we travelled to the abandoned town Cossack which was home to the North West's first established pearling industry, but due to the over fishing of the pearling grounds the pearling fleet moved to Broome, the town was then abandoned, it is now a popular tourist destination with many of the heritage building restored.

Below is my favourite picture so far its my DH in Coral Bay on the beach, he isn't hold a coin its the full noon. I love this photo.

We are staying near Port Hedland at Cooke Point.

Until next time Happy quilting

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Travelling around OZ

Hello Everyone - DH and I are traveling around OZ' and are currently in Coral Bay WA, which is glorious. We are going around OZ clockwise and should be in Darwin by August. I have taken three hand sewing projects with me.

Our next stop will be Exmouth for 7 nights.
Will keep you posted.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Cyberman quilt block completed

When you turn humans into machines they become Cybermen they stand 6 feet 7" tall and are made from steel instead of silver and the "handle bars" attached to Cybermen head are supposed to aid with their hearing.

Below is my 12" foundation pieced block:

The process of converting humans into a Cyberman is called “upgrading”, once humans are upgraded they are emotionless, ruthless, vicious, cold and scary machines. You can see this by looking into the lifeless round black eyeholes... pure evil.

This free pattern was found on trilliumdesign.blogspot.com

Thanks Caroline Press for the easy instructions to make this block.

Happy quilting until next time.


Friday, May 2, 2014

Work Like an Egyptian - Scribe

Did you know that only scribes and priests were taught how to read and write in Egypt, the position was often inherited and pasted from one generation to another in the same families and not everyone could become a scribe.

Scribes were usually only men who learned to read and write at a special school. It could take 3 to 5 years for a scribe to write and memorize all the hieroglyphic symbols.

and this is the assembled Steward

This is the panel with all the figures ironed onto the background fabric so far....

The panel is nearly completed....I only have to position my Pharaoh and Queen

and the Harpist on the background fabric. Wow... I've just realized that it's not as daunting a task as I thought it would be. The figures are coming together nicely.

Happy quilting until next time

Saturday, April 26, 2014

UFO Orphan Blocks - Sienna's Quilt

Oops! This has been on the "To Do" list for some time!! and Yes, I forgot to post this post last month, anyway, two month ago I decided to clean out my cache of unfinished projects (UFOs) and leftover orphan blocks. And surprise, surprise, look what I found, these sixteen orphans blocks that were left over from Samantha's quilt which I made for her in 2009.

I used the quilt as you go method on these blocks and joined them together. I thought if I added some side panels and top and bottom border, the orphan blocks could easily be made into a small quilt for Sienna.

The photo below includes the two new side panels.

To complete the top and bottom border I re-arranged and traced the letters to spell "Sweet Dreams Little Sienna" from an old pattern sheet I found in the Australian Patchwork & Quilting magazine Vol 23 No 6 onto the paper side of the fusible webbing... I used a fingers width between each letter for spacing and machine blanket-stitched around each letter.

Ta-da hear is a photo of the finished quilt for Sienna's, she is only 3 years old and has a new baby brother Jake born 11th March 2014 (Jake is our newest grandson).

I didn't want Sienna to feel left out with the arrival of Jake, so I made her this quilt... and she loved it....

Happy quilting until next time.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Work Like an Egyptian - Carver & Hieroglyphics

Wow ...Did you know that the Egyptian carvers only had bronze chisels and hammers to carve into the stone and leave these hieroglyphics writings behind.

My hieroglyphic carver has turned out so well on this panel. I am going to blanket-stitches around the applique shapes using two strands of matching embroidery thread, and stem-stitch the hieroglyphics.

I am busy fusing the shapes in place to make the Lotus Flower side panels, the one below will join onto the above carver panel.

Here is how it was done.

Started by removing the backing paper from the applique shape and fusing applique shape no 1(the green stems) into place with a hot dry iron, as you can see I am using the pattern sheet as a guide, which I have covered with baking paper to assemble the shapes on.

then I positioned applique shape no 2 and fused them into place,

applique shape no 3 is overlapped and fused in place with a hot dry iron

applique shape no 4 has been positioned and fused in place and my Lotus Flower is taking shape.

The completed applique Lotus Flower is ready to be removed from the baking paper and fused to the background rectangle fabric.

I need to make four of these Lotus Flower panels, so I still have two more panels to get ready.

Happy quilting until next time
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