Posted by: maureenc | November 24, 2016

Remember me?

Yes! I’m still alive ……I just can’t believe how long it has been since I actually blogged.

What can I say! Do I blame it all on getting older? No! That’s a cop out.

This year has been a series of  being “not so brilliant” as well as  lacking totally in any creative urges.

Early in September I had a total knee replacement, and since then I have been concentrating on getting over the  resulting pain, and trying to do all the exercises suggested  to gain full mobility again.

I must admit that I also succumbed to some  clinical depression due in some part to chronic pain……but that is over now.

On that point, it is amazing how some GPs react when a patient asks for help in dealing with Depression!

The same GP that thought I should cope with bone pain and not ask for repeat prescriptions for strong analgesics    “because you will become addicted!” was the guy was fired off twenty or so questions ranging from “Have you had a broken relationship” to ” has some close friend or relative died recently” to “why aren’t  you coping?”

The rest of his questions I found to be both  insensitive and insulting.

HELLO! It’s 3 weeks since I had a total knee replacement : the pain is stopping me sleeping; I am coping at home alone.

This was a guy I had been attending regularly  for seven years………I don’t attend him any more.

Anyway, enough whingeing! All is good. Mobility is good and pain is minimal.

Along the way, I have received postcards from members of Gondwana Textile Artists who heard that I had been bitten by the black dog.. ..I’m still trying to get my head into designing and stitching postcards to send to all of them. I had thought of trying a Gondwana theme; then I thought of fossils from the Wandjina Gorge in the Kimberley region of WA—-but thought they were too intricate for me to attempt in an ever decreasing time frame.

Posted by: maureenc | November 23, 2016


I hope you enjoy both the photography AND the description: I LOVED it

leaf and twig

of birch gathers
in the zebra woods

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Posted by: maureenc | July 23, 2016

Another Frontier

I have been following “leaf and twig” for quite a while. I LOVE it when someone “sees” outside the square. I wish I possessed her originality.

leaf and twig

new galaxy
found on the ground
lily pad houses black holes

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Posted by: maureenc | June 20, 2016

Something from my garden

Nodding violets

Dancing Violets

I don’t seem to have “time” recently for trying to be creative……unless you count monthly bulletins as creative!

So in an effort to prove I’m still breathing, some recent photos from my garden:

Cardwell Lily

Cardwell Lily

DSC03395 Caladium blossoms

Posted by: maureenc | June 8, 2016

Lavender Glooming

the colors wrap around us we are held in heaven’s embrace

Source: Lavender Glooming

Posted by: maureenc | June 8, 2016

Playing with Polyfilla!

Do read this blog from Cobs! I hope to try out her method as soon as I can. Too long without play makes Maureen a very dull girl!

The Cobweborium Emporium

1 Double Picture of Jellyfish and Seedhead Fairy HomesI know that you can get very good texture pastes for crafting, but they come at a price.  I’ve never before bothered about crafting with these texture pastes as it just didn’t feel like my cup of tea (so to speak), but recently I’ve had the urge to have a go.  And so I did.  Only .. not with crafters texture paste.  A few days ago Mr. Cobs had to visit B&Q (other DIY outlets are available), and I asked him if he would get me some Polyfilla.  After looking at me with a very suspicious head to the side and squinting his eyes look, I explained that I wanted to use it in crafting, on some cardstock, using some stencils, so I needed “the fine, ready mixed stuff please”.

Bless his heart, he didn’t just bring me back the required tube of Polyfilla, but also a…

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Posted by: maureenc | April 28, 2016

SCC: Round Robin

Glasses case block

Glasses case block

It’s just as well I nominated to be a “tortoise” in the current round robin on SouthernCrossCrazies, because I would surely be nominated as the slowest of the slow.

I must admit that stitching hasn’t been a priority the last month or so, as I adapted to being on the executive of a Ladies Probus group and needed not only to organise an Installation , but also to find new meeting facilities and plan an Installation Luncheon.

I also needed to get some inspiration to stitch and embellish the several naked blocks comprising a needle book,a pin holder, a scissor keep and a gorgeous block destined to continue its life as a glasses case!

I was the first to receive A’s blocks and no matter how hard I tried, inspiration just wasn’t coming to me!

(Particularly for the Glasses case block.)

Finally, I planned to back stitch heart outlines and fill them with silk ribbon flowers and a few beads for extra effect.Unfortunately, the heart outlines were swallowed up by the silk ribbon flowers I added.

This plan also gave me the incentive to dye some silk ribbons, something I haven’t done for the longest time. I dyed some pansy , Lavender  and blush pink. I still had sufficient green ribbon from previous dyeing days

Below that seam treatment, I used two strands of Marlitt Decora in a turquoise to chain stitch  above and below the seam line. In each curve I then stitched a turquoise seed bead flanked by a pearl “rice grain” bead.

Just when I thought I had finished with this block, I remembered some pale grey tatting that I thought might help the eye to travel down from the beige broderie motif I had added in the upper right hand corner! Now it was time to stop and leave room for my other “tortoise” friends to stitch up a storm

Glasses case block

Glasses case block

Time to tear myself away from this block, and start on the Pin-keep block!

Arlene constructed a circular block consisting of four segments, with finished diameter of  three inches for the Pin keep..

So easy to be over enthusiastic and cover the entire block!  But I restrained myself 🙂


Using an Edmar (Iris) thread  # 167 I chain stitched a dusky pink stem to which I added blossom pink SRE  rosebuds and leaves, plus silver charm leaves.

Then  nearly perpendicular  to that seam I  again used the turquoise Marlitt thread in a fly stitch.

A gold cat charm was then added over some blossom pink petals on the palest fabric block.

Arlene's Pin-keep

Arlene’s Pin-keep

Finally, I stitched the Needle-book block!

In retrospect, it was actually the first block I worked on, rather than last.

Using a variegated green Iris/Edmar thread and using SharonB’s CQ stencils, I  stitched some baseless triangles above a seam. Below each “hill” I added a trefoil in palest pink rice beads, whilst in the “valleys” simple lazy daisy flowers were added….again using Edmar (Iris weight) threads.

A cream braid was laid over the seam line of the cream patch, and small pearl beads  added to the centre of the braid.

There is still a fourth naked block that I have not stitched upon: the Scissor keeper!

Because the patches in these blocks are so small, I felt that I shouldn’t hog all the blocks. (So easy to do, when the patches are so small. I hope Claire and Arlene are content with the areas I have left untouched!

Now to send the blocks travelling again. It will be interesting to see the completed project in a month or so.

Posted by: maureenc | March 20, 2016

And now it’s Sunday

Dendrobium Biggibum

                 Dendrobium Biggibum 


Back in 1989 when my sister was visiting from W.A. I took her to an Orchid Show, and she gifted me with my first Cooktown Orchid, the floral emblem of Queensland since the 1890s.

It loves to bloom just before Easter, and this is part of the display in my back “garden” at the present time.

There are eight sprays of blossom on this clump of plants, and the  pot at the other end of the garden is showing


1-DSC03385 2-DSC03390

Posted by: maureenc | March 17, 2016

Update on scissor keep

I  “destructed “my first attempt at a foundation block for a scissor holder for my proposed chatelaine, and this is the result:

Scissor holder Mark 2

Scissor holder Mark 2        I must admit, that when I used a black stitching to outline the block, I was more satisfied with the result.



Yes , I KNOW that the white machine stitching is only to map the outline of the block. But I’m sure you agree that black thread throws the block into  better relief.

Maybe I have time for a mark 3 block!

Posted by: maureenc | March 15, 2016

Don’t you love online friends!

Maureen B and I have been online friends since about 2002, and she is one of the reasons I blog my stitching attempts, because I know that when I have a technical problem, she will always be able to offer some sound advice.

Below is an email I just received with comment on my chatelaine blocks.

And you know? she was spot -on in her comments!

I could live with the Pin holder and the needle book cover, but the Scissor keep ..

Anyway, read what Maureen suggested. and then read my reply below her comments.


I just viewed your blog and chatelaine set.  I thought the triangle worked in well and I like the floral centerpiece too (in both pieces).

I wondered about the scissorkeep though.  The floral piece could disappear altogether when turning after the seam is sewn or embroidered over.
Is it possible to expose it a bit more?  which would mean shifting the tacking too.

Just my two bits which you can totally ignore.

I took prints of Sharon’s freebie CQ blocks, mininized them, cut them out and near became demented as I could not get them right. In the end I scrapped them, did my own thing, with lots of trial and errors as, like you, it’s been a loooong time since I did something as small.  I stuck with Linda’s 5 sided piece in the centre too.

I hope you don’t think me rude, so I’ll send a hug along as well and the interference

My reply :

Hi Maureen
Not interference at all! What you said is PRECISELY the reason why I want to remake the scissor keep. Maybe I get position that floral piece centrally and then I have a “theme” showing in all three pieces!
You should know by now that I always appreciate your input.
Every time I get constructive criticism like this, I know how blessed I am to have friends who will share their knowledge and friendship.
Thanks Mii.




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