Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Merry Christmas Everyone!

We had a small gathering today at Jillian’s with some show & tell:


Jillian purchased this stunning quilt on a holiday in South Africa. It has all sorts of embellishments on it and is a wonderful reminder of her time there.


Ellen has made this quilt from lovely batik fabrics – it looks beautiful.


Alison made this Christmas themed table runner from a pattern in Quilting Arts Holiday issue 2008.

This will be our last meeting for this year as many people are heading off home or on holiday. Have an enjoyable Christmas & New Year and a safe time everyone.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas Lunch

We had a lovely day at Janice’s for our annual Christmas celebration. Unfortunately a lot of the photos were lost, but we have managed to uncover these:




The hat designing and making was fun – thanks Janice for organising this – some wonderful creations were made – sadly just a memory now.

We did however enjoy decorating some little gingerbread folk and hopefully the neighbours enjoyed our singing of some traditional Carols.


Thank you Janice for your kind hospitality and everyone who provided such wonderful delicacies for us to consume!

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Sewing Triangles

Today someone was asking about an easy way to make triangles.
Jane suggested this product called Thangles. This looks so easy to use - no tricky maths involved and plenty of ideas as well. They have online shopping as well



125g butter, soft
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 cups SR Flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon ground ginger

75g butter
3/4 cup icing sugar
2 tablespoons golden syrup
3 teaspoons ground ginger

* Cream butter & sugar till light & fluffy
* Sift flour, baking powder & ginger
* Mix into creamed mixture
* Turn dough onto lightly floured board. Knead well
* Press into 20x30cm tin
* Bake at 190c 20-25 mins until light brown
* Pour hot ginger icing over base while hot

ICING: Melt ingredients & stir together

Makes 24

Day at Kathy's & Christmas Tree of Circles

Thanks Kathy for hosting us today. Lots of stitching went on this week - Kathy was busy with her log-cabin block which turned into a pincushion - beautiful colours, some very recognisable fabrics from a recent challenge????

As discussed, here is the link to amitié in Bentleigh, Victoria, another lovely patchwork store which the Melbourne girls are lucky to have. Go down to the heading of circles, dots & living creatively. There is another challenge in conjunction with the Living Creatively website. One of the staff members has made a Christmas Tree quilt entirely of circles and spotty fabric. It's simple and really effective.

Living Creatively is a mecca dedicated to all kinds of crafts. It was started by Kerri-Anne Kennerley, probably the Antipodean equivalent of Martha or Oprah. Kerri-Anne had a vision to provide a showcase for people's artistic talents and there's lots of eye-candy on this website. The site focusses on small and home-based businesses, designers, places to visit when travelling and in the future a place to sell your work. You can sign up for regular newsletters.

I have published the recipe for Kathy's Kiwi Ginger Crunch slice which we all enjoyed today. Yum!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Quilters Guild NSW Challenge

Here is the link to the NSW Guild's 2008 challenge, Coast and Country.
There is a slideshow of all the quilts.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Quilters Show & Tell Blog

Here is a link to a great Blog called Quilters Show & Tell
There is a new quilt posted to the site every day and it looks like a great place for some inspiration. Anyone can add their own quilts to this site as well.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Log Cabin Challenge

Next year's challenge for Singapore quilters is to use the log-cabin block in a project.
This Blog by Melly & Me (sisters and designers) as well as being a visual feast for fabric lovers, has a Scrappy Cabin Challenge Tutorial.
The instructions are clear and the finished quilt is stunning.

I've whipped up my first block, just to see how easy it really is!

Block of the Month - Red Delicious

Here is a link to the Blog of Esther Aliu, an award-winning quilt designer and teacher from Melbourne. She specialises in stencilling techniques and also teachs quilting on domestic sewing machines. Esther has kindly offered a mystery BOM called Red Delicious for free. She has designed the quilt to use up her stash of red fabrics although any colour would be good and it is suitable for needle-turn applique, fusible applique and redwork. The Blocks will be available on her Blog from the 15th of each month, for one month only, and thereafter can be purchased from her Etsy shop.

You can also visit her website to see some of the lovely work she has produced.

Although I don't really need any more UFOs, I was quite taken with the first block and thought it might be a good challenge for the ANZA Quilters!

The Raffle Quilt Winner!

The raffle quilt winner was drawn at the Quilting Challenge lunch and was won by a very excited Jane. A number of ANZA Quilters members competed enthusiastically for as many tickets as possible to try and win this amazing quilt. As we found out this week that Jane is leaving Singapore for a new posting to South America, it will be a lovely memento of her time here. We are all glad the quilt will go to someone appreciative as well as raising S$3,500 for our chosen charity.

November Show & Tell

Carmen's "Blue Collection" quilt is a pattern by Maggie Walker which she purchased in Singapore. It took Carmen quite a while to collect all the different colours and get the reds and oranges 'just right' but again it shows persistence pays off with this stunning example.
Dal's wallhanging design of "Not Quite Cathedral Windows". Dal held a workshop for us to make these origami type blocks. They are stunning on the black background fabric.

Dal's red and yellow quilt was made using a wavy ruler, then the strips appliqued onto the background.

Sue's gorgeous Christmas wallhangings from a set of panels which came from the US.

This is Dal's Baby Bees quilt in green & yellow which has been machine quilted and tied.

Melinda made this quilt which I think was a block swap? It has been beautifully machine quilted by Desley from Addicted to Quilts in Melbourne. Melinda has kindly donated this quilt to Dal's African charity project.

Sue's lovely blue and red quilt has some of her own free motion quilting designs on it. Well done Sue!

This quilt of Sue's is her Tampa Quilt made while living there and took her 18 months to do. It is machine quilted.


The Challenge was open to all quilters in Singapore. Using a minimum of a Fat Quarter of fabric from Robert Kaufman's Every Iota range, with one of two colourways (brown or red, which not many people found inspiring at all) you had to make a quilt or other article not exceeding 60x60 inches. Once again the ANZA girls did well, taking home 1st and 3rd prizes as well as a highly commended award. Congratulations to all the winners.

Carmen's gorgeous "Proud Feathers" won 1st prize in the Challenge. She saw feathers in the fabric and designed a peacock utilising the paisley/Indian theme. Carmen's quilt was changed many times along the way trying out different colours and borders. We all agreed the finished quilt was stunning and was a well deserved winner. Congratulations Carmen!

Janice's Challenge quilt is called "First Day of Christmas" and she has also seen feathers in the paisley fabric. The pears and leaves are 3D and really jump out. The text was beaded which provides an added sparkle. This quilt won 3rd prize - well done to Janice!

Maggie's quilt is called "Fireworks" which used the red challenge fabric. She has hand quilted it using some of the lovely bright colours. Maggie also used the remaining red fabric on the reverse to "get rid of it all". The quilt won a Highly Commended award - well done Maggie. This is Kathy's "Outside the Square". She used the brown colourway and used Angelina fibres to creat some 'fantasy fabric'. It was machine quilted.

Maurine has also chosen the brown colourway and appliqued a green silk or satin over some of the paisley design. Maurine's bag is called ""The Chosen Ones". Her career as a reproductive surgeon inspired her design when she saw stars in the fertility symbols. Her "Sac a Porter" creation shows the myriad of paisleys all competing for entry into the top. Maurine's mission in quilting is Recreating Life in Old Fabric. The inside of the Sac used recycled pockets from an old designer jacket. Well done Maurine!

Alison used the brown colourway for Pop Goes the Paisley, adding plenty of brights and using the disappearing nine-patch or twisted nine-patch design.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


This quilt is the product of a Block Swap. There were 10 people
in our group. We each made 10 blocks; kept one and swapped the
remaining nine to the rest of the group. We then had a deadline to make
our finished quilt top. Each block in the quilt is the same even
though they look different due to color placement. The tenth block was cut
into four to make the corner blocks.

Why is Dal smiling so much? Read Below.
My cousin, Carrie, returned to S Africa last year, from
Canada where she has lived for the last 20 years. She wanted to
do something positive for underprivileged South Africans and while visiting
various areas and talking to people involved in different aid and
couselling groups, became aware of a need for a food supply
Each month, Carrie purchases food (fresh produce and staples)
and takes it to an area to be distributed. Many of the families whom she
helps are run by the oldest child as both parents are dead. Others
comprise women who have taken in children, not their own, to care for, as there
are no parents. These people are struggling against the odds, with the
children attending school and striving to earn their place in
The money for this food comes from donations sent to Carrie
by her friends abroad. However, Carrie only has a very small car and this
necessitates several trips to buy the food and distribute it. With the
rising cost of fuel, this is not an ideal situation. She therefore needs a
minivan. Her work touches my heart as she works tirelessly to improve
the lives of these people, meeting with council officials to enable water
and electricity supply to the homes and other basic services that we take for
granted. She has drawn no salary in all the time she has been working on
this project.
I decided to try and make a small contribution towards a
minivan fund for Carrie by doing some fundraising. When I talked
about it, Melinda generously donated this beautiful quilt to help
raise funds. I am investigating the best possible way to use the quilt to
raise the most money, so either a raffle or perhaps selling it on the

Editor's note:
If anyone has any fundraising ideas to support Dal/Melinda's quilt please contact Dal directly. Well done both ladies!

Sunday, September 14, 2008


Our sincere condolences to Dal, Luke and family on the passing of Dal's mother last week.

Dal has returned from South Africa and will be back at quilting next week.

We hope our friendship will help during this sad time Dal.


This quilt was designed by Betty Kerr whilst she was in our Group in Singapore. Two quilts were made by the quilting group members.

One was won by Janice at the Christmas Luncheon last year and the other will be used as a fund raiser this year.
Betty has written an explanation about the Charity quilt process which will soon appear below.

Our sincere thanks to Betty for her untiring work that has resulted in a brilliant quilt. Thank you to everyone who helped in assisting Betty in the cutting and distribution etc and everyone of our group who made their two blocks.
I'm trying to find out who to bribe to get the second charity quilt...... anyone got any idea?????

Betty's explanation of the ins and outs of this quilt.My inspiration for the 2006 charity quilt came about from a wonderful 6 day trip to Japan that Miranda organised just the month
before. We mainly went to see the Tokyo Quilt Fair plus the lovely city of
Kyoto, where I saw lots of beautiful ladies wearing kimonos.

A “Charity Quilt” committee of 5 women was formed to come up with ideas for the
quilt. Four of us went to Japan, hence the theme. I thought of the kimono
design as it was lovely, but it was not enough, so one of the others thought of
the fan design also. On returning home I started designing and sizing up
the quilt.

At the time we had 42 members in our quilting group who participated in making the two quilt tops. It was quite a task to fit that many blocks in the one quilt and then repeat it. So I came up with the idea of each member making two blocks, one of a kimono and the other of a fan,(I saw a fan quilt at the Tokyo show and had a photo of it), therefore each quilt top comprised of half the members blocks.

With each member paying $30 towards the making of the quilts, the committee provided
the backing square and the strips for the border, the members then provided
their own material for the kimono and the fan appliqués. The fan was to have a
section with the kimono material sewn on, enabling them to be kept as a pair on
the quilt top.

I proceeded to cut all the squares and strips for the members so that I knew they were all cut the same. The border of each block was done in a log cabin design, so they had to be cut correctly.

The committee then got together at my house and we packed all the cut pieces along with instructions and diagrams, bagged them up in a zip lock bag with a number from 1-42. When they were completed and returned, they would then correspond with my numbered block design.

The response to this design was wonderful. Within the first week, many members had made them already and thought it was a quick and interesting set of blocks to make,
some members even learned new techniques from it. The members had to return
their blocks in the same bag so that I could match the block placement to my

I was pleased some members even enhanced their kimonos and fans with special stitching patterns which gave it their individual look.

By piecing it together I separated them with a 2” sashing, and then bordered the entire quilt with 8” of Japanese blue indigo, with the idea of stitching sashiko designs on it.

Editor’s note: You will agree that it is a stunning quilt and Betty took the whole project on board and put hours of behind the scenes work into it. AMAZINGLY at the same time Betty was completing her Award winning “Out of the Blue -Steve Irwin Died” quilt, which those of us who were on the Charity
Quilt committee were privileged to have previews of it being worked on, before it’s public launch.
Betty we all thank you for guiding us, teaching us and inspiring us..

September Show and Tell

Elly's cow print quilt

Kathy's wedding quilt

Friday, September 12, 2008


Our deepest felt condolences to Janice and Andrew on the passing of Andrews father earlier this week.

We send our friendship and prayers to both of you and your families.

from all the group.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Slice and Dice Batik Quilt

My Grandmother interested me in quilting when I was very young. I loved the
feeling of connectedness with women in my family through the generations. I
asked her to make me a quilt for my wedding and she did. Since then Ive repaired
old quilts and used pieces of others work to pull together quilts for my
grandchildren but this is the first Start-to Finish quilt Ive made on my own. I
found it quite challenging. I had help choosing the colors. Colors are not my
strong point. Accuracy is the key. I had to rip out some of my squares because
they were not accurate enough to end up giving me a quilt with square corners.
Its a bit odd when one side is two inches longer than the other. I wasnt happy
with the backing and spent a great deal of time pinning it so that it would come
out even.
It took a great deal of courage on my part to start each new phase
but once I started it and saw that it was going to work, I picked up speed and
confidence. Its worth doing. Im very happy with it.
Ellen Starmer, The Slice
and Dice Batik Quilt, Singapore, 2008


Introducing little Hamish in Brisbane.
Here's Courtney holding the quilt our group made for the new baby.

Here's a group photo taken in June when we said farewell to Courtney. We gave her the lovely quilt that members of our group had made, and she was thrilled.

Next we heard she had her little baby a month early and lately we heard that mother and baby are well, though Hamish is still in hospital he's reached his birth weight. Thanks to Betty for the mum and bub photos taken in Brisbane. Betty does voluntary work in the hospital where Counrtney gave birth to Hamish.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


Dal's mother is very sick and Dal has gone to be with her. Before leaving she sent us these photos and a heart warming story.

Our very best wishes Dal,. for your mum's speedy recovery.

It is a flannel fluffy quilt which I made for my
cousin's daughter in SA so I am taking it with me. She is a young black girl
(12) who has no parents and is being raised by an older sibling.She crept into
my cousin, Carrie's heart while she was in the area working on a project to
improve life for the people. Carrie has 'adopted' her and provides for her and
the rest of the family. They still live in their own environment but their life
is considerably improved by Carrie's involvement

Sunday, August 31, 2008

IN ABSENTIA MIRANDA - made in Australia

In the 14 months that my sister and I were caring for my mother in
Australia , I felt I needed to quilt and make bags at night to give me some
tenuous link with my life before caring for my terminally ill Mum who eventually
passed away from cancer.

This quilt is called "Somewhere Over the Rainbow" ......where I feel she is now.

I worked on 3 quilts (One was lost in all the moves and the other is still in
progress)- one was finished in time for my mother to enjoy using it right ujp to her last day. It was a source of interest at the hospice where nurses and strangers would come in to look at it and ask her about it, and she would then chat with them.

It was a healing quilt for me after Mum passed away I would wrap myself
in it when I wanted to be close to her. Now I've gifted it to my daughter.

It's a three generational quilt already. In fact all three of us had a hand in making it. Mya and mum snipped off the endless numbers of cotton threads. If you've made one of these quilts that is chenille blocks , you'll know what iI mean about the sewing threads! They're still popping up no matter how many washes it gets.

After making lots of 'THANK YOU BAGS" for friends who were being
exceptionally supportive, I started making bags for Charity. They sold like hot
cakes and the money went to Eastern Palliative Care and to Caritas Cristi; the
two organisations that helped both my mother and my sister and I through this
tough time.

The organisations were most grateful. I had hoped to start a quilt for
each cancer patient in the hospice, but due to Australian Laws, they were not
able to accept quilts: The laundry contractors could only wash their own plain
white hospital covers!! I was glad to have found a way to support the charities
without causing "OHS" problems.

In all, I made 23 bags for charities (my sister cleaned up after me), ran free workshops where the participants then donated the bags to the charities and I lost count of how many "thank you" bags I made.

As all of you know, a lot of love and thought goes into something hand made for someone special - especially if it is a thank you gift. It gave me great joy to give the bags away. Thus I have none for show and tell in Singapore - so I've put them here in the blog to share this special time with you. .