Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Quilt Madness is Upon Us!

It's time again....
Time for what??? you may very well ask....
Time to dominate the dining room table with fabric, sewing machine, cutting mat etc and the floor with fabric, thread, left-over fabric......and probably more.

My husband Jumps with Joy or is it....Grimaces when I start cutting a quilt.....he knows it'll be a while before he gets the dining room and lounge looking tidy and orderly again.
It's JK's 4th Birthday at the beginning of May and he requested a 'cool blanket like LJ's' as his present and he would like it in blue and green and he likes the courthouse step pattern.
Huh!! opinionated.....NOT AT ALL!!
So I've done the mad dash to Spotlight and the Fabric Barn for material (no trouble with the blues, but the greens seemed to be mainly in muted colours.....weird....a bit limited!). I've cut 11/2 inch strips and 2 inch squares (actually I cut 21/2 squares cause I didn't re-read the instructions...but we'll downsize as we go).
Last night I put together my first 2 courthouse blocks and this was the result...................................

Tuesday, March 18, 2008


One day the itch to make a bag came upon me.
So in true "Laura-Motivation" style, it was done on that very day!!
I used the Tutorial from Tiny Happy and was very happy with the results.
Fun and reasonably fast to make to...all things I love!

I gifted that one to my sister Emma who loves a bit of vintage in her life.

The great thing about it was the denim on the outside of the bag was given to me by Emma and the flower fabric on the inside was a good find at the local Salvation Army Thrift shop. In fact I got a few goodies that day including vintage bark cloth with a Horse-themed print all over it....I know a little sister who would just LOVE to have a tote bag made from that!!!

Monday, March 17, 2008

Good Kai and Mahi

Having quite a few cultures represented in our family unit, I have always wanted to learn the cultures (ie. cooking, craft, language) of each one. Being bought up in a Dutch family I can speak conversational Dutch and know enough about the culture to navigate it. I can cook Dutch meals and sing Dutch songs to my kids. That's one down.
My husband represents the Maori and Samoan cultures. To get a better grip on the Tikanga (protocols and traditions) of Maoridom and to fulfill a desire to learn the Maori arts, I enrolled in a Raranga (weaving) course at night school.
I have done 4 weeks of the course and am just loving it. Our tutor, Tia, has such a beautiful heart and is so encouraging and knowledgeable. So far we have learnt to harvest our own Harekeke (flax) and prepare it. We have made a bouquet of flowers all woven from one piece of work.............

Rourous (food baskets) and a wall hanging (sorry no photos yet!).............

And.....a plasticbag holder..........

This week we are going to start our Kete Pikau (backpack bag) so it is all very exciting. I love the challenge, the character development (great way to practice perseverance and patience!) and the company of the 5 ladies.

In addition to my weaving I also attempted a traditional Maori meal of Boil-up.
It consists of stewing meat, potatoes, kumara, pumpkin, cabbage and dough-boys.
I felt very proud when my husband's verdict was, 'just like mum's boil-up'. Yay!!
I found a great website with Maori recipes
These recipes have cooking times and quantities which is FAB as most recipes are passed down through the family so everybody has their own variations. Have a go!!