Christmas Memories Quilt Block

The next block made for my mother’s quilt is a Christmas one, because Christmas was always an important celebration for her and a special time for family.  While her Bruning  side of the family from Germany have been in New Zealand for quite a few generations now, I attribute her love for this celebration (rightly or wrongly) to her family. I still remember my Grandmother’s tree and Christmas day, so she just followed on.

We all remember the delicious smells from the kitchen, the ham cooking, the Christmas pies being made. The scent of the pine tree, the Christmas pillowcases (in lieu of stockings) set out by the hearth. Often there was midnight Mass then off to bed to wake very early!

My mother went to a lot of trouble to make this day special for all of us. And that wasn’t easy but with careful budgeting and no running up of big debt we had many Christmas Days to remember because of her hard work.

Every year even in her later years my mother honoured Christmas and loved to have it just right. So I think it is fitting that a block goes in for Christmas. A family time, coming together and sharing a meal, spending time together.

Attic window Christmas quilt block

I made this one in the style of an Attic window, learned through the Grandma’s Kitchen sew along, except I put in on extra frame. The first square is Christmas stockings with the names of my mother’s family on as I wanted to incorporate her family into it. Three are still alive Betty, Barbara and Peter.  Aunty Betty is a real Christmas advocate and still rallies the family together for a day before Christmas when the wider family comes together.

Then the tree, we always had one, the Christmas crib which we had too and of course Father Christmas who was very generous and thoughtful!! Just saying!

I also tried a little colour with crayon and fabric medium so hope it works! I have embroidered it as well so fingers crossed!

Size of block is 12″ finished.


Tea and Buns

I am continuing on with the memory quilt for my mother.  I have been thinking at the end of making it I’d also like to put together a book with photos of blocks and other photos that relate to the blocks, plus information to go with it to sit alongside the quilt.  Anyways!

First block is a teapot and cup. Yes I’ve made this block before for another quilt and I love it! I guess because I learned to love tea in my home from my mother. I still brew up a pot with tea leaves quite a few times a day!

Pot of tea quilt block

When visitors came my mother always offered tea and something to eat. She took great care with that right up until she died in 2013. She loved fine china and many of us have a teapot somewhere that was once hers.  Gemma, her granddaughter said when they visited if she – Gemma made the tea, she was always anxious it wouldn’t be quite right!

She was a good and capable cook and while there were ten of us growing up plus herself and Dad we always had good nourishing meals. The recipe chosen is one for Sultana Buns that my mother made  out of her head, the written recipe long gone. We thought we had lost the recipe after she passed, but fortunately Pauline – one of my sisters had it. We were all so happy as they are such comfort food!

Sultana Buns.

Cream together 4 oz of butter and 4 oz of sugar. Add 2 eggs and 1tsp of vanilla essence. Add 9 oz flour with 1 tsp of baking powder to mixture and 2 cups of sultanas. (I think one is enough, two seems too many!)  Place teaspoons on tray and bake at 180 degrees C for ten minutes or until light brown and cooked.

Mary’s Memory Quilt

One of my goals for this year was to work out a memory quilt for my mother. She died in 2013. I have collected ideas from the family and I am making it to help us all keep in our memory all that she was and all that she contributed through ordinary everyday living.

So every Monday I hope to have a completed block to share. Its the day I have given over to concentrating on sewing for this quilt – as I do have other work on the go!

This week its looking at where her predecessors – where did they come from?  My mother’s father was William Conole and his family came from Co. Clare in Munster Ireland.  From Ireland he came to Australia and then on to New Zealand.

Her mother was Grace Bruning and her family came from Mechlenburg in North West Germany. They came to New Zealand and lived in the top of the South Island. My grandmother Grace came to the North Island and married my grandfather, they lived for a long time in Waikane and my mother grew up in this region.

I chose a shamrock to represent her Irish heritage and a hepatica flower for Mechlenburg. These will be 6 inch finished blocks. But there will be a few different sizes in the quilt.

Shamrock quilt block

Hepatica quilt block

Jungle Baby Quilt Completion


I am linking this up to the May Goal at Elm Street Quilts.

May Goal

My goal was to quilt my Jungle Baby Quilt top – making a backing for it and trying out using both wool and cotton batting to see what that is like.

As it turns out Baby Louie decided to enter the world two months early, but he is doing really well and while still in hospital is going from strength to strength. It was lovely to see the hospital has darling little baby quilts it uses for these special little ones.

Quilt for Prem baby

Completed Jungle Baby Quilt

Using the double batting makes it a little thicker. I thought it would be good for putting on the floor for Louie to lay on and play on later as he grows.  I stitched in the ditch to quilt most of it and tried a little fmq around the border.

Completed baby quilt

A close up of one section.

Jungle Baby quilt section

The Backing

As I have so many left overs from quilts I have begun to think about using some of them for backing and so this is my first time doing that. Nice feeling to use them up!

Backing on quilt

May Goal to Complete Baby Quilt


I have the top of the baby quilt completed.

Quilt top

So for May I want to make a backing for it out of some left over scraps and then quilt it. I’d like to try it with two pieces of batting in it. Something I have been wanting to do for awhile. One wool and one cotton to see what I think.

So the goal is all finished and bound by the end of May.  It’s for a new family arrival that I think is due in June beginning of July.

Baby Quilt Top

In a couple of months there will be another little grand nephew so I have been making a simple little quilt that he can use perhaps to lie and kick on.

In the meantime here is my young Aussie grand nephew wrapped up in his “I Love Dirt” quilt that I sent him.  I am sure he is looking forward to his new cousin.

Wrapped uo in a quilt

This one is much simpler and I used some Baby Jungle by Makower fat quarters that I had.

The blocks are …..

4 patch quilt block Quilt Block Log cabin block

Top finished… or is it?Quilt top

I’ve sewn the bottom border wrong way round! So leave it for a few days, unpick it and resew!

Bottom border on Jungle Quilt top

Next will be to organise backing. I am going to go scrappy as I want to use up some of the fabric from this quilt plus some left over backing I used for the I Love Dirt quilt. I’ve decided I need to use fabric up rather than leave pieces lying about.

#ILoveDirt Quilt Complete for January Goal


Linking up with Elm St quilts

My goal was to complete the I Love Dirt quilt I have been making for my great nephew Jaxon. At the beginning of the month it was just a top. I have since basted and quilted it.

I mainly stitched in the ditch and round the applique pieces, however I had some fun fmq his name around the sides with some cars as well. I am happy with how it all turned out and while my heart was in my mouth when I put it in the washing machine, there were no runs and I put in a few colour catchers in case. So all is well that ends well.

FMQ on border.

fmq along the border
Top left block

One block - Grader
And drying on the line, which it did very quickly because of the heat.

Completed Quilt



To-Do Tuesday 15th August

Stitch ALL The Things
This week I am joining up with Stitch All the Things to look at what I need to do in the coming week, or lets re-word that… what I want to do!
Last Week’s List
  •  Complete 4 blocks in the Bloom quilt. ( I have decided to to do the full 20 blocks and as I want to complete all blocks by the end of the month, I need to make this one a priority.  √  think I made 6 which has brought me a good ways along. 
  • Complete this weeks Grandma’s Kitchen QAL block, possibly the Splendid Sampler one if time.Will finish at a 12 inch block. I don’t remember any sayings of my grandmas. However Nana C was always very adamant we stay together as a family, and it is something of her legacy that we do! She also advocated a good breakfast and wearing a singlet. The only think I don’t do is wear a singlet any more. Just don’t seem to need one!!Block #7 if Grandma's KitchenThe Splendid Sampler block this week was block number 91 – Gran’s Button Jar. I’ll finish it this afternoon. Will finish at a six inch block.Block #91 of Splendid Sampler
  • Choose fabric from what I already have and cut fabric for I Love Home quilt along and view the videos of  Alyssa from Penguin & Fish on Facebook to see what she does for it. Well I got hooked in my this block. Yes I cut the fabric out for all the blocks. And I’ve watched Alyssa each day – she is still cutting. √ But once I had the fabric cut out I couldn’t stop. (I am using fabric left over from my previous quilt which is also a bonus). I just had to go ahead and work on the block for August until I had it completed and… I love it. It is an 18 inch block. Roll on September. But I am still watching Alyssa on Facebook each day as well because I want to see how her choices work out. Block 1 of I love home sew along
  • Walk 50 000 steps  ×  Bad week for walking – so much rain so only got out a couple of days. I am so over rain.  43000 steps
  • Spend another hour weeding this week. There are lots of weeds. But even seeing small patches weeded is rewarding. × The garden is sodden! No chance of getting out and the next week is looking that way too.

To Do for the Week of the 15th of August

  • Complete all the Bloom Blocks so that I have 20.
  • Complete this week’s Grandma’s Kitchen and Splendid Sampler blocks
  • Amy from Diary of a Quilter has this Quick Cornerstone Quilt that I am thinking of making using some Space fabric so will check it out against my fabric and fully decide and then … maybe start cutting.
  • Walk 50000 steps