A quiet place is a place to reminisce, to reflect, to celebrate the joys and to find solace in the losses.

It can be found in many places; within a garden, by a river, but most of all within oneself. To lose oneself in creating something of beauty is to find a quiet place.

Friday, 30 August 2013

My next needlepoint project

Today all the supplies for my next needlepoint project, "Amber Waves", a design by Laura J Penn, arrived in the post. Now I have a dilemma. Do I continue with my knitting, or do I start the needlepoint design? Maybe a compromise, I'll sort the threads and get it all prepared, then finish the present I am knitting.  

Tuesday, 27 August 2013

Around the neighbourhood

Another beautiful day for a walk

Tiny Treasures

I now have these vases for my miniature room. I bought them as they reminded me of a small vase that my mum had for single flowers. I have put them on the shelves surrounding the fireplace for the moment.

Monday, 26 August 2013

Coffee anyone?

A quiet walk to the shops in the spring sunshine, on a different route to last week to see what else is out in bloo,m with a stop off for coffee before doing the grocery shopping.

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

The box is assembled

I have a miniature room. Well, the beginning of one, and tomorrow I can start adding things to it, as long as: 1) the glue holds, 2) I haven't glued it to the dining room table and 3) Emma Louise doesn't try to get into it!

She is inclined to get into everything:-

Monday, 19 August 2013


I suggest you don't ask me to wallpaper your lounge room! My second attempt is better than the first but there are a few bubbles. I'm hoping that as the paper dries it will shrink slightly and the bubbles will disappear. Am I overly optimistic? 
I've varnished the floor, the door and the architraves. When it all dries I get to put the box together. 

Sunday, 18 August 2013

These kits are beautiful

Yesterday I went to the NWTG stitching afternoon and browsed a book of miniature cross stitch designs. Then one of the ladies suggested I have a look at Janet Granger's kits. Oh, they are exquisite and I fell in love with the needlework frames. Janet suggests they are for "a stitcher with some experience". Well, that's me but it should also say "and with good eyesight". It's stitched on 40 count silk gauze! Maybe I'll just browse wistfully.

Saturday, 17 August 2013

The miniature room interior

I've discovered that wallpapering isn't quite as easy as the instructions lead one to believe. My first attempt to put wallpaper onto the back wall didn't work at all. Now I know that paper stretches if over handled when wet and that it is better to press the bubbles out rather than wipe!

Armed with my new discovery I made my second attempt. This time with the floor. Success! The room now has a faux wood floor. I just need to decide whether or not to varnish it to look like polished boards or leave well enough alone.  

The two side walls are being painted in a pale grey blue (sky blue, smoked pearl 1:1)) to blend with the background colour in the wallpaper.

This week I bought skirting boards which I will paint in white. I also bought a timber door with architraves, so that it will look as though you can go from one room into another. I'm not sure whether to paint it white or stain it to match the floor boards. 

Friday, 16 August 2013

Spring is coming

Magnolias in bloom always herald the end of winter and the beginning of spring for me. As I drove home, there in full bloom were some magnificent trees, the flowers reaching up to the wintery sun.

I hadn't been at home long when a friend arrived with a gorgeous array of camellias that are flourishing in their garden.

It wasn't me, Mum

I came home from a lovely day of chatting and shopping with my friend "M" to this!

Wednesday, 14 August 2013

On an even colder winter's day...

...'S' and I headed into the city to see the  Monet exhibition. Yes, it was cold and the weather forecasters gave bleak warnings as to how the day would worsen. Undeterred, as intrepid adventurers, we ventured off by bus and train, arriving safely at our destination. 

This artwork was just inside the gallery, nothing to do with Monet, just simple white china bowls slowly drifting around in a pool of water, tinkling as they touch; very relaxing.

It was somewhat more crowded than we had hoped but we slowly made our way through the exhibition. I still love his 'houses of parliament', the paintings of his garden at Giverney, and this one which I've never seen been before. It reminds me of a warm spring day, the flowers being tossed by a gentle breeze. 

Mural of Monet's home

Tuesday, 13 August 2013

Just right

Thanks to my friend 'T' my table is all ready for my dollhouse.
It also has Ollie's stamp of approval!

Sunday, 11 August 2013

Everything but...

... the varnish! I woke this morning all enthusiastic to do the first coat of varnish on the outside of my box. Then I discovered that I had every paint medium imaginable but no varnish. 

A quick trip to 'Riot' and I found the only bottle of satin varnish in stock. I also discovered that the colour I had painstakingly mixed yesterday is called 'cashmere' and is available premixed!

However, on looking at the boards I painted yesterday I decided they needed a fourth coat first. Now that they are dry I should be able to get 2 coats on tonight. 

Saturday, 10 August 2013

Today's Project

For as long as I can remember I've wanted a doll house. Not for something to play with but to decorate and furnish. I've made a couple of shadow boxes for friends in the past, one was a garden shed!

This week I went to The Dollhouse, and fell in love with everything. The website is only a hint of what is available. I still want a dollhouse but I decided to start smaller and bought a 'room box' to assemble and decorate. All my supplies are assembled and I'm ready to begin. 

PLEASE can I help...

All the outside walls and edges are sealed and painted with 2 coats of cream (yellow oxide, opal + warm white). Tomorrow I will give them a light sand and a final coat. I just have to estimate the same amount of colour I used to make up the same cream!

Tuesday, 6 August 2013

On a cold winter's day...

... my friend 'S' and I headed into town to see the Hollywood costumes on exhibit at ACMI, Federation Square.

Some of the costumes were amazingly intricate, others looked so much plainer than they seem on screen. Of course, one of my favourites was the dress, made from the house drapes, worn by Scarlett O'Hara in 'Gone With the Wind'.

My second blanket

I have been several given balls of a variegated wool and was asked to 'do something' with it for a charity fund raiser. Having almost finished my first knitted blanket I have decided to use the wool to make another. Finding wool to match was a bit of a challenge but I decided on a soft grey and a darker mushroom colour. The colours blend better than they are showing in the photo.

The pattern I use is a wonderfully easy one. The magic square pattern knits from one square to the next, with no pesky sewing up at the end. 

Now I just need to knit the last four squares on my first rug before I start another!

Sunday, 4 August 2013


Some years ago I was in one of my 'decluttering' phases and I put a cross stitch kit, that I was never going to do, for sale on eBay. Little did we know but the paths of the person who bought it, and mine, were to cross a couple of times more and from those brief encounters a new friendship was born and would bring me a lot of joy.

I spent a lovely time yesterday with 'S' ... and not a needle was threaded! We did have show and tell; her peacock sampler is looking beautiful, keep stitching my friend, it is going to be gorgeous. 

This is her birthday present to me. The book is beautiful; lovely photos of cats and sayings. I looked at this book about a month ago and resisted the temptation to buy it. 

The templates, along with a guide on how to use them, is for crazy patchwork. Ooh, now the block I started might progress. I have done the all piecing but then got stumped with where to go next. Most of my initial attempts to embellish it were all pulled out and I lost interest. Now I feel excited about it again. 

Friday, 2 August 2013

First there was a lemon tree...

then there were lemons...

then there was lemon butter!

Easy Recipe:

3 lemons  - juice and grated rind
3 eggs
1 cup of white sugar
125g unsalted butter - melted

Combine all ingredients, 
Put in a heavy based saucepan,
Stir constantly until thickened

Pour thickened hot lemon butter into 
sterilised glass jars whilst they are still hot and screw the lids on.

Put into the refrigerator (on a protective mat) to cool. Lids will seal as the jars cool

Thursday, 1 August 2013

It's Finished!

Yes, after 10 weeks of solid stitching I have put the last stitch into my "irises in front of a stained glass window". I am pleased with the finished result and happy with the changes I  made to the original pattern. I will leave it for a couple of days and then come back to see if I have missed any stitches. Once that is checked I will take it to my framer next week and it will be ready to go into the Royal Melbourne Show next month.