Well as promised it is time to meet our hosts. This is Arabella, she is the house princess

and this is Boudreaux – he’s a little shy

and this is the master Gryffiindor

and this is the view from the back deck. It will never cease to amaze me looking out at this from every vantage point in Salt Lake City. I just cannot come to terms with it, its like someone is holding a big stage backdrop up in front of you all of the time. Its actually quite warm here 80degrees so of course I have packed all of the wrong clothes but isnt this just magical…??

hugs for today (Tuesday arvo here, Wednesday morning at home)


I had to choose kitties this week as we are staying at our dear friends Peggy and Dereks in Salt Lake City. Actually I have written this draft before I left and I think I have now just gotten off the plane after how many hours of flying so will attempt to add some photos for you.

They have the 3 most precious kitties and we are entrusted to them for one whole day until Peggy and Derek arrive home. So Gryffiindor, Boudreaux and Arabella will be our welcoming committee and they are just gorgeous… We first met them whilst staying with Peggy and Derek last year for Quilt Market. They are the ‘nicest’ couple and welcomed us into their home. Above and beyond their hospitality, Peggy drove us around town, collecting things for market, printing, shopping, sightseeing and setting up for market. Aren’t quilters across the world just the most amazing, generous people? It never ceases to amaze me. I hope I can return the favour one day.

Next week will come from Portland Oregon as we set up for quilt market. til then, happy stitching!

hugs, Helen

Published in: on May 6, 2008 at 12:47 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Have new shoes, still busy packing, packing, ready for the big trip. I have 5 days to go to be ready arrgghh! My one pair of shoes has to do me for the whole trip in all manner of situations so I had to choose carefully. No room for 20 pairs of shoes for every occasion so hopefully no-one will be looking at my feet. Plus I always seem to see shoe stores everywhere on our USA trips so hopefully I will have room to bring a couple more pairs home! after all, who doesn’t love shoes? Can we ever have too many?

So over the next two weeks I will be reporting in from different parts of the world. Hope you can keep up with me and keep up with your blocks… So many of you from around the world are now stitching along with us, dont forget to join in here on the blog with a comment, a post, a photo of your work or something nice you have done. Visit Country Chix and see the Nice Thing they have been talking about.. I haven’t had a chance to try it out yet but will get to it when I this preparation madness is over.

hugs to all for this week, ‘see’ you in the US of A


Published in: on April 28, 2008 at 6:50 pm  Comments (2)  
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On Saturday as busy and panicked as I am getting ready for the big market trip to the USA I took a day out for myself to attend the Quilted Crows Autumn Gathering. What better than a lovely country hall, beautifully decked out with all things stitched, Great tutors such as Kerry Gillespie and Lynette Anderson and of course Leonie and Deidre from The Quilted Crow and 75 likeminded passionate stitchers. So my block for the week just had to be ‘Stitching’. I spent the day finishing the binding on my Diametrically Deduced quilt which is supposed to be in the US by the 26th so couldnt do any new projects today. I had my camera but only took pics of the projects so have included a couple here to tempt you. Their next Gathering is in September with Anni Downs and Natalie Bird… dont want to miss that one..

this was one of Kerry’s new patterns and it was named Milly, Tilly and Molly – no she did not know my girls are Molly, Tess and Tilly but said if she had she would have named them that – such a coincidence to be so close. Think I’ll have to file this pattern to make ‘one day’ for sure.

This was Deidre’s doorstop pattern. A young girl at our table made this one on the day and it looked so good. It was her first attempt at Buttonhole stitch and she had lots of teachers giving her advice and knoweldge…

Sunday saw myself, Miss Tessie and some wonderful friends busy busy packing patterns to ship this week in readiness for my visit to HMQS and Spring Market. I though you may like to see the work that goes into packing the NPNT packs for you – a very big job… but I still think the results are worth it.

The boxes from the printer have glue applied, folded and stuck and then the sticker attached. Tess is good at this bit.

The cards are printed and cut. And then they had to be made into the stacks of 54 – 9 cards from each pile in 6 different boxes from the printer – very easy to get mixed up and we seemed to have a few stranded cards leftover – woops…. The girls packed 500 sets today – lots left for me to package still, my dining table may be unuseable for a little while yet…

 The instructions sheets are printed and folded individually – Colleen made a good dent in these, I finished them at 11pm last night.

The box, the instructions and the cards are then packed into a zip lock bag for storage and shipping. Boxes are stacked with them, now storage space has to be found in my ever bulging studio.. 

Published in: on April 21, 2008 at 1:34 pm  Comments (1)  
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HI ‘Nice people and nice friends’
I have just had a lovely night in Melbourne with DH. We had a lovely albeit quick meal in the exciting and happening Federation square before attending Priscilla – the show. Wow, magnificent costumes – the colours and fabrics used were just to die for – I think I should have been costume designer – they get to be so creative, out there, have any fabric they want to play with – just imagine the fun?
these were some of my favourites –
Paintbrushes  » Click to zoom ->   Cupcakes  » Click to zoom ->  Gumby  » Click to zoom ->
Anyway, our dinner wasn’t by candlelight – actually it was right as Earth Hour began so could have been if we’d waited another few minutes but it was in celebration of our 17th Wedding anniversary! Did you turn off for Earth hour somewhere in the world?
hugs, Helen
Published in: on March 31, 2008 at 11:47 am  Comments (2)  
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look, I am on time! Had a big weekend at the most beautiful scenic spot at Lake Barrington in Tasmania for Miss M’s rowing regatta. It was our first time there and although it was a little unnerving driving down 3.5km of steep windy roads ‘into the jungle’ as Miss Tilly announced once the lake was in view it was worth it.

We camped in our camper trailer which was great but as always its nice to be home. So thats our block of the week this week. I am sure that no matter how much of a travel bug you are you are always glad to be home to your own bed, your own family and friends and your own kitchen. I know I am. Now I am not going to write much more as I am about to put a free easter design for you all on the Hugs blog – pop over and download it as a gift from me.

hugs, Helen

Published in: on March 17, 2008 at 1:57 pm  Comments (1)  
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Daisy Daisy, give me your answer do….

Jeepers, we had a cold snap here on the weekend and had snow in our garden….. I know thats not unusual for some of you and you are probably thinking so what! But it is the middle of summer here and even in the coldest of winter we may get snow once every 2-3 years only.  So I chose Daisy for this weeks block to try and keep summer and my garden around a little longer….

I have put two pics here. One from the quilt and one I colourque’d which you may have noticed in the putting it together tutorial…

Daisy Block of the week

Daisy coloured
To do the colouring use any quality coloured pencil. You need to colour before you stitch if you are using the iron on pellon or you will get little dots on your colouring. Then seal the colour in with a small round paintbrush and some textile medium. Leave to dry, fuse on your pellon and stitch away. Adds another dimension doesnt it? Make sure you get the medium over every bit you want to keep but not on the background fabric or it will stain. See the little spot on the petal I misses which is now rubbing off?
have fun,
footnote: I have just had a customer who had a double up of cards in their pack – and therefore some missing. That means that there is probably another pack out there somewhere who has the missing ones…. If its you, I am terribly sorry, please let me know and I’ll send a replacement.  ooooh, I hate it when I get it wrong but as you can imagine printing, cutting and packing these packs are very time consuming and at this stage I am still doing it all myself…. that is about to change..
Published in: on February 26, 2008 at 10:07 am  Comments (3)  
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Honey Bee block

Honey Bee

the weather has been so nice down here this last week (well except for an unusual 37 degrees yesterday where we all nearly died!). I could not resist spending time in my garden over the weekend, weeding, deadheading, fertilising and some late spring pruning (I know its summer). Here in Hobart we have the biggest furiest Bumble bees I have ever seen and of course Tasmania is also famous for its leatherwood honey…. so I thought it timely to feature our Honey Bee block.

I have included some pics of my beautiful roses – can you tell they are my favourite flower. I am sure they are international favourites… I will do my best to get a photo of a bumble bee also, but not today, unfortunately we have returned to overcast showers…


What do you suppose?
A bee sat on my nose.
Then what do you think?
He gave me a wink
And said, “I beg your pardon,
I thought you were the garden.”
~English Rhyme

hope you are all forging ahead and keeping up with your block a week. Love to see some pics.

hugs, Helen

Published in: on February 20, 2008 at 4:00 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Fiona’s blocks

skip over to Fiona’s blog and see her progress. She is powering ahead and look at her lovely even stitching… Lovely to meet you over there Fiona, please join in anytime…

happy stitching everyone


Published in: on February 17, 2008 at 10:52 am  Leave a Comment  
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From Wikipedia,In physiology, a smile is a facial expression formed by flexing the muscles most notably near both ends of the mouth. The smile can be also around the eyes. Among humans, it’s customarily an expression of pleasure, happiness, or amusement, but can also be an involuntary expression of anxiety, in which case it can be known as a grimace. There is much evidence that smiling is a normal reaction to certain stimuli and occurs regardless of culture. Happiness is most often the cause of a smile. Among animals, the exposure of teeth, which may bear a resemblance to a smile, is often used as a threat or warning display – known as a snarl – or a sign of submission. In chimpanzees, it can be a sign of fear.Did you know that you can make a difference with a ‘Smile’? World Vision Australia has a Smiles catalogue with many ways to help those out less fortunate than ourselves. Here is a list of what we did in 2007During 2007, record numbers of Australians gave children, families and communities in need a lot of reasons to smile. Supporters ordered over 85,000 life-changing gifts valued at $4 million. These included:

  • 5,167 blankets to keep young children and the elderly in Zambia warm.
  • 5,918 sets of two mosquito nets to protect families in Ghana, Sudan and Cambodia from malaria.
  • 11,501 courses of immunisation for children and pregnant women in Sudan and Zambia.
  • 8,087 school supplies kits for children in Cambodia, Kenya, Ghana, Honduras and Lebanon.
  • 8,396 contributions of clean water in Kenya.
  • 7,817 lambs for families in Azerbaijan, Mongolia, Somalia and Sudan.
  • 6,118 contributions of nourishing food for families in emergency situations.
  • 12,464 goats for families in Myanmar and Africa.
  • 3,666 veggie packs for families in Lebanon and Liberia.
  • 3,031 HIV and AIDS camps & shelter for orphans and vulnerable children in Rwanda.
  • 3,225 eye surgeries in Zambia.
  • 1,558 contributions to reforestation in Mongolia and Sudan.
  • 2,647 piglets for families in Cambodia, Uganda, East Timor and Myanmar.
  • 1,030 cows for families in Azerbaijan, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
  • 1,468 emergency relief kits for desperate families affected by crisis such as famine, flood, earthquake or conflict.
  • 325 fish farms for hungry families in Liberia and Rwanda.
  • 230 yaks for Mongolian families.
  • 329 contributions of clean water for Liberian communities.
Published in: on February 4, 2008 at 2:16 pm  Leave a Comment  
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Sisters block

I know, I too am now behind… sorry but I have been reduced to dial up speed for the week because I was naughty and spent too much time surfing wonderful blogs – how did we ever survive on dialup? You poor people who still have to, I am so sorry for you.

also in Australia this past weekend we were celebrating Australia day. Flags, barbies, parties everywhere. My Molly had her first official rowing regatta and then we were off to the beach/bush for a weekend of camping with friends. Very hot and windy and it wasnt the nicest beach but we did enjoy lamb on the BBQ for dinner (another Aussie tradition on Australia day)

The girls were each allowed to take a friend so poor husband was in a tent with 6 girls!! So I thought Sisters was a nice choice as they all played and partied the weekend away like the best of friends which what sisters are.

Sisters block
I seem to do quite a few sister themed projects and they are always very popular patterns.  This bag was a magazine designer challenge in Country threads from memory. They sent us the fabric and threads and we had to come up with a design. I gave it to my only sister for her 40th birthday but have to keep ‘borrowing’ it back for shows as everyone else wants one too.

Sisterly Love bag

It has a lovely verse all stitched on the back which you could substitute the word ‘friends’ for ‘sisters’ if you didnt have one or wanted to make it for a friend.

Sisterly Love bag verse

This one I did a few years ago having a play with scrapbooking on fabric, it is the Sisters Huggette design and these are my three  girls.

Sisters Huggette, my three girls

so, are the rest of you keeping up with blocks? maybe a week to catch up now. Have you ever done any other Sister designs or projects, we’d love to see them.

remember you can ask me to become and author to the blog so you can post directly to it rather than through comments.

hugs for today, and I’ll try to be on time with another next Monday..


Published in: on January 31, 2008 at 4:55 pm  Leave a Comment  
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