Double Gold!

All classes and some remote Apatcheez have been very busy making and finishing lots of projects but this post I wanted to show you the ‘Nature’ challenge entries. We had a record 17 entries and, since a picture paints a thousand words here are the photos of these wonderful entries. In no particular order:

Lynette’s butterflies –


Pat’s asymmetrical depiction of the four seasons –


Suzanne’s very amusing testament to the unfinished –


Robyne’s very sweet little Tilda birds –


Faith’s chair cover adorned with Dresden plates and native birds –


Bev’s French-braided rainbow fish –


Chris’ whimsical beaded garden –


Julia’s perfectly paper-pieced blue wren cushion –


Sharyn’s upper class chook cushion –


Joananne’s rhapsody of lilac and lavender –


Robyn’s attic-window-view of a garden –


Elaine’s thirsty magpie –


Jan’s quilted teabags –


Debbie’s vintage upcycling – sunshiny explosion – apologies that this quilt was draped over the piano so you can’t see the whole here –


Margaret’s beautiful tree of butterflies –


Teresa’s scene of Cradle Mountain – a wonderful souvenir of a recent holiday –


and finally June’s reminiscence of a holiday to New Zealand –


Oh and I made one too, which was only for display. I called it ‘middle Age’ –


It was great fun trying to guess who had made each piece and it was extremely difficult to vote for just one – which is why we have Viewer’s Choice and I don’t have to choose one! As it happened there was a tie and the winners were………..Elaine and Margaret with their very creative artworks –


Aren’t they amazing! these girls have certainly set the bar high for next year and it was mentioned that they are both Wednesday Apatcheez but we won’t go there now.

We had a great day with presents –


and lucky door prizes (thanks to XLN Fabrics for the bundles shown here) –


as well as the visual feast of the challenge quilts and some Christmas food – what else is there?

Until next time (when I’ll update you with some more finished projects) happy quilting






Welcome Spring

It has been a warm start to the season for those of us in Brisbane – perfect weather for a quilt show in fact and as it happens there is an excellent event on this Thursday, Friday and Saturday – the Laidley Spring Festival. The good people of Laidley will be out in force because the whole town gets behind this festival and there is lots to see – from the flower show to the street parade to the quilt show. Which is where we’ll be of course so pop in if you’d like to see the prize-winning quilts from the area.

And speaking of prize winners here are two of our own. As I mentioned in the last post, Robyne took out the third prize in her section and Lesa won Viewer’s choice at the recent EKKA  ‘Quilts Across Queensland’.


I hope these women inspire you to enter competitions yourself. Doing so will help you see your work in a new light, will add to the show (more is more) and who knows, you might be lucky enough to win a rosette as beautiful as Robyne’s and Lesa’s!

I was pleased to find out that my Bowie quilt has been accepted into the Queensland Quilters’ Show in October so you see I’m taking my own advice. It will be great to see it hanging in the convention centre at the exhibition.

Speaking of exhibitions I hope you took the opportunity to visit the exhibition of costumes from the ABC television show ‘Miss Fisher’s Murder Mysteries’. It was delightful to see the couture garments as well as the inside information regarding fabrics and designs. Made you want to be a flapper ….


There’s something very artistic about a collection of thread don’t you think?

And on the subject of art – don’t forget the Apatchy challenge this year is to make a quilted item with the theme ‘Nature’. Better get designing….

Estelle was our designer this week. She managed to finish two major works.


The latter is an example of what you can do with a jelly roll and a little extra fabric. Great work Estelle.

And if you missed Robyne’s and Lesa’s quilts the first time round here they are again…..


Congratulations to you both.

Until next time happy quilting (and see you in Laidley)



Travel, Shows and Celebrations

A lot can happen in three weeks. Sometimes you stay put and sometimes you get out. It was that kind of time this month.  First there was a trip to Warwick for the Jumpers and Jazz Festival – where everything, whether it moves or not, is wrapped in wool



Then there was a visit to Vanuatu where the sun almost always shines and photos look like they’re fake (but aren’t)


Where the flowers are as bright as the ladies’ dresses:


And where there is time to relax and reflect on the meaning of it all:


And finally a quick trip to Melbourne. On arrival I found that the National Gallery was exhibiting ‘The Making of the Australian Quilt’ – an exhibition to showcase the rich heritage of Australian quiltmaking from the ‘Rajah’ quilt (made by female convicts on the voyage to Australia) to quilts from the 1950’s.  Here are some of the key works:

quilt 1

The hexagons that make up this quilt (by Prudence Jeffrey made around 1857) are only 1/2″ across – proving that some people were mad back then too!

quilt mary jane hannaford

This quilt was made by Mary Jane Hannaford and includes a little poem to remind the reader to do the right thing.

quilt misses hampsom

And this sampler quilt made by the Misses Hampson around the turn of the century shows Australian motifs.

I must say, even though I had seen many of the quilts before, they were certainly inspiring, especially some of the crazy quilted pieces that were made from the finest velvets, satins and silks.

While I have been gallivanting around, there have been several wonderful projects that the Apatcheez have finished – really it is like a factory here sometimes.

We also passed a bit of a milestone last week – it was Apatchy Quilting’s 8th birthday! But was there cake and streamers – oh no – the girls just kept working –

Pat finished this set as a gift for someone special. Apparently the origami folding at the top left was a little challenging.


While Margaret finished her set which includes sashiko – again a gift for a lucky someone.

Margarets fish 3

To celebrate the birthday though we will be having our annual birthday sale this week so come in and say hello and grab a bargain.

I have also been asked many times over the past few weeks about this year’s challenge. As you know we have a challenge every year and it’s time to announce the theme for this year. (See I hid it here so you had to read all the way through until you found it – tricky eh?) Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to make a quilted item that is inspired by the theme. All the entries will be displayed at the annual Christmas gathering – to be held this year on Saturday 3rd December. This means that your entry must be in by the 2nd December.

As I mentioned this year the challenge will be to make a quilted item (it could be a quilt, wallhanging, bag, garment…..) that fits the theme. Again this year the theme is a word and the word this year is (drum roll please) ……’Nature’

So get your creative juices flowing  – if it’s animal, vegetable or mineral it will fit the theme. From a pebble to a mountain, a leaf to a forest, an insect to an elephant – all fit. I can imagine some ideas coming to life on the fabric. Hope you can too.

I’m sure we’ll talk more about this and I’ll give you more information about the venue and so on as we get closer to the time of the unveiling.

The other big news is that the world outside Apatchy has been taking notice of the Apatcheez. There are always quilt shows asking for entries and it is sometimes a little daunting deciding whether or not to enter – will my work be good enough? Will people criticize it? Will I win a ribbon? Personally I think you should go for it and as someone once said “sometimes you win, sometimes you learn”. It gives you a different perspective when you see you quilt hanging with others and it can be a useful exercise where you can see aspects that could be improved. If you do happen to win a ribbon well that’s a bonus. I have entered my latest quilt in the Queensland Quilters Show and will know next week whether or not it has been accepted.

Over the past couple of weeks the EKKA was held here in Brisbane and three of the Apatcheez were successful – Robyne won third with her Roseville Album, Christine won ‘Best Hand Quilting’ and Lesa took out the viewer’s choice prize for her ‘Roseville Album’. I’ll try to have photos for next week. Congratulations ladies you are champions!

Until next time, happy quilting




2015 Challenge Winners

The Apatcheez had a great time at the Christmas party/Challenge reveal on Saturday. This is the fifth year we have run the challenge and three people (Jan, Chris and Lynette) were rewarded for having entered a project each year. That’s what I call consistency. We had twelve quilts this year and they were so interesting it made it very difficult to judge. Just think how great it would be to have 27 quilts on display – that’s how many attended our party. So there’s a challenge for next year – if you didn’t enter this year you’ve got 365 days to come up with something for next year!

We continued with the Viewer’s choice method for both the winner and runner-up. With such a wide brief it would be too difficult to find someone qualified to make a decision – so I leave it to you! You’ll recall that the theme this year was ‘Home’.

I apologise for the quality of some of these photos but I know you want to see the entries NOW and this is what we have to work with. I’m sure the teenager-in-residence must be responsible for the blurred ones….

So….drum roll please….. this year’s winner was actually two people as there was a tie so this year’s winners, and the recipients of a $100 Apatchy Quilting voucher (that’s one each they don’t have to share) are…..

Julia – she used photographic fabric to create this beauty


and Lesa – who, again, used non-traditional methods including Inktense pencils to create this masterpiece –


Again, I apologise for the poor photography here but the reflective glass in the frame made a photo extremely difficult. Blame this one on me.

And the runner up, for a second time in two years, and the recipient of a $50 Apatchy Quilting voucher is Margaret with this wonderful creation


We were all looking at this on the day and every time you looked you found another little detail – it really is a lot of fun.

Several people mentioned how difficult it was to put only one project’s number in the prize box and you can see why when you have a look at the entries. Here are the remaining entries –

Angie actually followed a pattern to make this – something she doesn’t always do – and she did a great job. Look at those points….perfect!


Pat, a first-time entrant made this little piece based on a quilt she made for her daughter. It isn’t sideways but the number is – we fixed that after the photo.


Faith, another first-time entrant, gave us one of the blocks from her Baltimore Santa quilt. She used to be devoted to reproduction fabrics but I think you can see that we’re turning her to the light side! Beautiful needleturn work on this one.


Jan made this for her son. It is a drawing of his old house mounted (very cleverly with magnets) to an old piece of tin from the property and used barbed wire as a hanger. We thought it might be a problem with health and safety handling this one so we put it up out of reach!


Maureen showed us the life she leads when she she goes off with her caravan club buddies – and it certainly looks like a good one.


Lynette pleased everyone with this fantasy garden, complete with dense quilting which is her forte.


Dee, another first time entrant, made this lovely quilt. She is such a well-travelled lady and this amusing quilt showed us a home of another land – love the fur-lined hood!


Chris didn’t disappoint – delighting us with this whimsical landscape that is so much her style. Who wouldn’t want this hanging in their sewing room to inspire them?


And finally, Robyn’s entry is here.


The photo doesn’t do this one justice as there was so much to see in the multiple applique pieces – great work Robyn!

And I also entered a quilt – just to show solidarity with those brave enough to enter the competition. It had to be done in three nights so it had to be simple and it had to be graphic. So here it is…


XLN Fabrics, who are the purveyors of the beautiful fabric I tempt you with – the Amy Butler florals, the Tula Pink fantasies and the Kaffe Fassett Collective colour explosions, very kindly donated fabric bundles for the lucky door prizes.  Here’s Heather very happy to win hers –


And here’s Faith, the-quilter-formerly-fond-of-reproductions-fabrics-but-now-almost-converted-to-COLOUR with hers –


I would also like to thank Teresa who brought her houses quilt in as an exhibit – unfortunately I didn’t get a very good photo of it by itself but you can see it in the background here


That photo shows Chris opening her secret Santa gift – this year we swapped needle cases and I think everyone was satisfied with their choice. As one person said “there were no duds this year”. Absolutely!

The other nice thing was the community that the group has – even though many only see each other at this time of year. The morning classes rarely see people from the evening classes but, as the teenager-in-residence says ‘there were no skirmishes’.

He distinguished himself by working flat out at the front desk – giving people their viewer’s choice forms and writing out raffle tickets. Here he is during peak time


And lots of people helped pack away at the end of the day which was really appreciated. Some washed up –


some wrapped leftovers



and some re-arranged furniture even though they were told not to “in their condition”.


Generally, everyone had lots of fun



There were more prizes, more gifts and more smiles but you get the idea. So thanks everyone for a lovely day. Until next time

Happy quilting






A Challenge is Announced

It’s time to announce the annual Apatchy challenge. Your mission, should you choose to accept it, is to make an item that is inspired by the theme. All the entries will be displayed at the annual Christmas gathering – to be held this year on Saturday 5th December. This means that your entry must be in by the 4th December. And the theme…..well just hold on for a moment while we review things……

It has been QUITE a while since we last spoke and so now there is much to share including projects from the Apatcheez:-

Suzanne utilised some Apatchy fabric in a very creative way. 100% cotton is great for sewing clothes - here's proof

Suzanne utilised some Apatchy fabric in a very creative way. 100% cotton is great for sewing clothes – here’s proof

Debbie's 'if it isn't in here I don't need it' hold ALL bag

Debbie’s ‘if it isn’t in here I don’t need it’ hold ALL bag

Joan's remarkable 3D cushion using yoyo's and bias stems

Joan’s remarkable 3D cushion using yoyo’s and bias stems

Next there was a trip to the quilt show at Brookfield. These girls always have interesting challenges and this year was no exception. The challenge was over a period of around 18 months and involved adding borders or other embellishments to a centre on point. Here are two examples –


And here are two more –


Then they had some other amazing quilts to see like these two –


Anyone who is anyone was at the show and it was quite a sport spotting the rich and famous


A short trip to Sydney was a welcome break from the end of year BAS calculations and the like. It was a beautiful weekend and everyone, including the birds enjoyed the sunshine –


To add to the enjoyment the wattle was out


Back at the ranch we all enjoyed the finished Apatcheez projects last week

We've enjoyed watching Bev hand quilt this beauty for a while now and it was great to see it finished. An awesome example of reverse appliqué

We’ve enjoyed watching Bev hand quilt this beauty for a while now and it was great to see it finished. An awesome example of reverse appliqué

Pat nailed her version of the kid's quilt kit

Pat nailed her version of the kid’s quilt kit

And Pat also whipped up this bespoke eye spy quilt in a very short time

And Pat also whipped up this bespoke eye spy quilt in a very short time

And on the weekend it was time for the Sherwood quilters show. They too had some excellent entries –


The Sherwood group also had a very interesting challenge which involved each person drawing a number which corresponded to a page in a magazine. Whatever was on the page was the inspiration for the challenge. The Apatchy challenge is a bit broader than that ( or narrower depending on your perception) as it involves a word for the inspiration. And this year’s word is….’Home’.

So get your creative juices flowing  – maybe you’re thinking literally of your home, or a bird’s nest or a rabbit’s burrow. Maybe it’s a song like ‘Green Green Grass of Home’. The teenager-in-residence, who enjoyed a birthday last week came up with a Motley Crue song with home in the title. How you’d quilt that I can’t imagine, but I can imagine some other ideas coming to life on the fabric. Hope you can too.

I’m sure we’ll talk more about this and I’ll give you more information about the venue and so on as we get closer to the time of the unveiling. Until then, happy quilting


And the winner is……..

A great day yesterday after our annual Challenge Quilt competition and Christmas event. We had a record number of entries with 16 clever ladies going with the theme ‘Music’ and creating wonderful projects. Because the scope of the entries was wide open we had a wide range of exhibits and techniques.

Suzanne's winning entry

Suzanne’s winning entry

The winner of the day was Suzanne with her amazing creation called “Bad Moon Rising” after the Creedence Clearwater Revival song. Not only was her piece filled with all manner of visual allusions to the song but she had LED lights lighting the alley but also had an MP3 player with the song playing. One person who looked at  it said “is that really coming from there?” And yes it was!

The runner-up was Margaret with her musical cat table runner. Apparently Margaret’s husband suggested the design so he was in the good books. Here’s their joint effort-

Margaret's musical table runner

Margaret’s musical table runner

Since this competition was such a broad scope we decided one judge would be hard-pressed to determine the winner. So we came up with the perfect system – let the people decide! So it was viewers’ choice that determined both the runner-up and winner.

Here are the other entries:

Chris' bird song quilt

Chris’ bird song quilt

Sue's musical score

Sue’s musical score

Angie's homage to Michael Jackson

Angie’s homage to Michael Jackson

Bev's Sashiko meets song

Bev’s Sashiko meets song

Cathy's "Madame Butterfly meets Liberace"

Cathy’s “Madame Butterfly meets Liberace”

Debbie's abstract guitar canvas

Debbie’s abstract guitar canvas

Elaine's wonderfully colourful instrument quilt

Elaine’s wonderfully colourful instrument quilt

Bec said that "even at dawn the laugh of the kookaburra is music to my soul"

Bec said that “even at dawn the laugh of the kookaburra is music to my soul”

Stephanie produced this sumptuously embroidered treble clef

Stephanie produced this sumptuously embroidered treble clef

Jan cleverly made a beautiful stitchery and some squares into a wonderful file book cover

Jan cleverly made a beautiful stitchery and some squares into a wonderful file book cover

Julia was inspired by Mozart for her beautiful piece

Julia was inspired by Mozart for her beautiful piece

Lesa thought outside the box and created "My Green Tambourine" with a matching bag - a child of the 60's indeed

Lesa thought outside the box and created “My Green Tambourine” with a matching bag – a child of the 60’s indeed

Sharyn's creation reflected her love of Mozart and his 'Moonlight Sonata'

Sharyn’s creation reflected her love of Mozart and his ‘Moonlight Sonata’

Speaking of 'outside the box' June's purple people eater definitely ticked the creative box

Speaking of ‘outside the box’ June’s purple people eater definitely ticked the creative box

I talked about some of the trials and tribulations of my own creation and the fact I had decided to have it quilted by a professional. Here is the top so far:

My Top 40

My Top 40

The other important event was the drawing of the raffle of our collaborative quilt ‘Flowers for Trudy’ (won by Susan Seeney). We were very happy to welcome members of Trudy’s family Arnold, Julie, Thomas and Anna to witness the event. Julia from Bluecare drew the winning ticket and was happy to accept a cheque for an amazing $972.20. (sorry I don’t have a photo yet). I was so pleased to be involved with this and really glad when we added the ticket sales and found we had raised so much for such a worthy group of people. Well done Bluecare and well done Apatchy people!

Blue is the new black

Tiffany Blue actually. Let me go back a little – contrary to popular belief I have been rather busy lately behind the scenes. One of the things I have worked on is re-vamping the blog. As I am somewhat technologically-challenged this has probably taken me longer than it would someone who knew what they were about. But c’est la vie. Apart from the alteration in the header and the addition of the beautiful shade of blue in the background I have also changed the galleries to show each photo rather than a slideshow. There are so many images on the site now that the slideshow was taking way to long to find what you wanted. Hopefully this way is easier for you.

I have also added ‘widgets’ to the bottom of each post that will enable you to share posts on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and more. Not only that but the sidebar on the right under ‘Search’ you can find another link to my own Pinterest page.

This Pinterest page started some time ago and includes lots of quilting-related boards as well as others for Paris (of course) and other places and things that interest me. One board that might interest you is the Pincushion board. This board is filled with ideas that may help you with your Secret Santa challenge. Let me know how you go.

Are you up for a challenge?

It’s that time of year again when we issue a challenge to all our clever ladies to come up with a quilt that will fit a theme and be shown at the Christmas party event at the end of the year. Before we talk about the challenge let’s talk about our Christmas Party – it’s only4 months away – I know hard to believe isn’t it?
Challenge picture 1
Generally at the Christmas Party we have a ‘Secret Santa’ gift swap where everyone brings a gift to exchange. This year we thought we’d try to be a bit more creative – actually it was Jan who suggested it so all kudos to her – instead of bringing a gift this time we want you to bring a pincushion to exchange.
All those who bring a pincushion will take one home. Here’s your chance to try a new technique or just ‘de-stash’ a little. All you have to do is:
1. Make a pincushion.

2. Wrap it up in Christmas paper (the mystery makes swapping more exciting!)

3. Bring it to the Christmas party

4. You will receive a number and when your number is called you choose a ‘gift’ and get a pincushion to keep!

Need some inspiration? There are lots of pincushion patterns at Apatchy or you could create your own!
challenge picture 2
And now on to the challenge……
We have had some wonderful exhibits in the past and the more there are the more interesting and fun the event – so if you haven’t entered before why don’t you have a go this time?
This time the rules are a little different in order to leave the event open to more types of work – which should make it all the more interesting!
So here are the guidelines:
– The challenge runs until 21st November 2014.
– There are two prizes – the winner judged by a neutral party; and the Viewer’s Choice Award
– You may make anything you like as long as it’s either quilted and/or embroidered. It can be machine or hand stitched.
– If it’s a quilt then make sure there is a hanging sleeve so we can hang it at the Christmas Party. Likewise other works should be able to be ‘shown’ at the display.
– Write a few words about your project including how it fits into the theme and you’re done.
The Christmas party will be held on Saturday 22nd November (earlier than previously advertised) and this event will also see the drawing of the raffle for the group “Flowers for Trudy” quilt – all proceeds of which are going to the Blue Nurses.
Oh and you’re wondering about the theme – well here it is….
Drum roll please, or maybe a fanfare on a trumpet…… the theme this year is

challenge picture 3MUSIC

Maybe it’s a favourite song or artist that inspires you, maybe it’s the harmony of hundreds of hexagons, perhaps a quilt for a loved one with musical instruments, or a landscape of the Austrian alps (the hills being alive with you-know-what or a skirt with guitar fabric (told you it didn’t have to be a quilt). Away you go…create my beauties
Here’s some inspiration:
challenge picture 4challenge picture 5challenge picture 6challenge picture 7

Quilt show and Trudy’s quilt

We are having fun at the Boonah Quilt Show today and tomorrow. Hope you get a chance to visit because there are some beautiful quilts on display.

The nicest is of course ours shown here-

We have finally received permission from the Blue Nurses to hold a raffle for this quilt, the whole proceeds of which will be donated to them.

For those who don’t know – Trudy, a good friend of ours passed away last year and we decided to make a group quilt in her memory and raffle it for her favourite charity (Blue Nurses). She loved flowers and her favourite colours were red and orange so that was the basis of the colour scheme.

Thirty two Apatchy Quilting girls worked on this quilt and thirty blocks make up the front with another used for the label on the back. The quilt is called “Flowers for Trudy”

The raffle will be drawn at our Christmas party on 6th December 2014. Tickets are $2 each or 3 for $5. Good luck!

Here are some more pictures from Boonah


In case you’re wondering the last two photos were taken just now just before closing time. There’s no way I could have taken a photo this morning because it was packed!

We were rushed off our feet with a lot of quilt groups making a day of it here. We said hello to some girls from the Beenleigh Quilters, some from Stanthorpe and many more.

Jan was busy doing demos with the Kanzashi flower tools. It was standing room only.


Come and say hello tomorrow if you’re in the area.

Challenge revealed!

The gathering we had yesterday is what Apatchy people call a Christmas party. To those of you who have never attended one of these parties it is more of a delight for the senses.

Yes each person brought a plate of delicacies for all to share and yes we mingled and chatted and exchanged gifts and laughed. Yes we even had ‘secret Santa’ – a time to be amazed at how ingenious our ladies are in being able to buy lovely things for just $10 or perhaps to be amused at the reaction of some as they opened their presents. The thrill of expectation is always exciting and here was no exception.

We even had a visit from the Christmas fairy – unfortunately our Apatchy Santa (the teenager-in-residence) has hung up his over-sized shirt and polyester beard and declared this year that he is too old for such nonsense. Fortunately another generation is available to carry on the tradition (in the form of Miss B) although she can only appear as Santa’s representative.

The highlight of the day was the display of the challenge quilts – 14 in all – not bad when you consider there were 34 people present – I’d say that’s as good a percentage as any quilt group can manage. And manage my clever people certainly did. What a wonderful display of quilts of all techniques, colours, sizes and shapes. Congratulations to Robyn for winning the judge’s prize and well done for being the most surprised winner ever. Congratulations to Elaine for her ‘highly commended’ award and to Cathy for her ‘Viewer’s Choice’ award.

Moreover, congratulations to all of you who were brave enough to enter your quilts so that we could experience such a wonderful treat. And thanks to my Apatchy ladies for being the best customers a quilt shop could have. Thanks for a wonderful day and a wonderful year.

Here are some photos of the day so those of you who couldn’t make it can see  what missed. Prepare to be dazzled………

PicMonkey Collage Christmas 1

PicMonkey Collage christmas 2

PicMonkey Collage christmas3

Unfortunately when you take photos of quilts hang on the wall they become somewhat skewed and you don’t see them as beautifully as you would have if you were at the show – but you can see the general idea. I’ll try to put each quilt and it’s creator on as an individual image on ‘Your Gallery’ over the next week. Here’s a great photo of the winners of the awards – talk about ‘winners are grinners!’ Well done Robyn Cathy and Elaine:

smallish 338