Book reviewed by Megan.  Megan is a wife and a mother to four children who spends some of her days in a hospital looking after sick people and some of her days at home hanging out with her gorgeous family. When she finds some spare moments she heads to her work table in a corner of the house to knit, embroider or sew. Megan can also be found in the kitchen cooking far too many cakes and biscuits. She will always choose reading a craft book over sweeping the floors!

Love with a Chance of Drowning by Torre DeRoche, Penguin

Love with Drowning

The days have been getting very cold and damp down here in the southern hemisphere and on chilly evenings I have taken to retreating from the family a little and having a long hot bath…with a book.

Torre DeRoche, the author of ‘Love with a Chance of Drowning’ is an Australian woman who was living in America when she met the man of her dreams in the shape of a gorgeous, adventurous Argentinean man named Ivan. After a whirlwind romance he persuaded her to sail off into the sunset to Australia! The two of them, lots of beautiful Pacific islands and Torre’s morbid fear of oceans. An unusual combination, but a combination that has resulted in a lovely book that I enjoyed hugely as lay back in my hot bath.

Torre writes in a delightfully conversational style with lots of self-deprecating humour that makes you feel as though any of us could circumnavigate a good portion of the world if we had the right boat and the right partner by our side. And even though’ Love with the Chance of Drowning’ is about a grand travel adventure it is also very much the love story of Torre and Ivan, a unique story in itself.

So whether you are lying on the beach in the northern half of the world or snuggling under blankets in the southern half, grab this book and start reading.  In no time you will be deeply engrossed in life on a boat with Ivan and Torre.

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Yellow Colour Palette

Because where I am it’s freezing cold and I need warming up, we are going with summery yellow and warm fuzzy link love this week! (image above created here)

Stitch :: The Paisley Pillow

Share :: A cup of (hot or iced) tea with an old friend

Knit :: This Sunshine Scarf

Lounge :: under a quilt or under a tree with a good book

Crochet :: A flippy floppy ear flap hat

Visit :: Your local park and enjoy all that the weather has to offer. What do you notice about it in different seasons?

Make :: A beautiful sunny yellow picnic quilt (quilt pictured below by Jen Carlton-Bailly aka bettycrockerass)

quilt and photo by Jen (bettycrockerass)

Sew :: My favourite skirt pattern, perhaps using these bucks or scallops

Read :: Aloud to a loved one

Eat :: Courgettes with feta and mint

Enjoy :: your weekend, whatever it may bring

**No payment (monetary or in-kind) is received by whipup for any links in this post, they are genuine recommendations of the author**

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Danielle is a Canberra-based quilter, crafter, knitter and collector of fabric who loves to applique. She blogs infrequently at Petits Elefants, but is more likely to be found on Instagram and twitter (@petitselefants).

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Today Danielle reviews Hand-Appliqued Quilts: Beautiful Designs & Simple Techniques

With so much inspiration around us, little wonder that many of us frantically try to squeeze in as much crafting as we can in the few short hours we might have available every week. The temptation may be to focus on quick-sew techniques in order to produce as many quilts as possible in the time available, and certainly there is a list of reasons as long as my arm to make quilts in this way. But sometimes, or perhaps more often, you might want to slow things down a little, use your few hours to meditate over each stitch, knowing that your project will become an heirloom to be treasured for years. Hand appliqué is just the technique I have turned to when I need a ‘slow-it-down’ project and is the subject of this gorgeously-presented book from Tonye Belinda Phillips.

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Tonye manages to break the art of appliqué down, demystifying it as a foreign technique to one that is truly accessible to anyone with simple sewing skills. Even if you’ve never hand-sewn before, you will find that appliqué really isn’t difficult – Tonye describes her appliqué technique as a basic ‘get-out-there-and-do-it’ approach – and the detailed instructions guide the way. She gives useful tips on tackling different types of shapes – curves, points, circles and valleys (such as the dip formed in the ‘v’ of a heart shape) – and advice on fabric selection, choosing a colour palette for your project, and finishing techniques.

Included in the book are projects ranging from dolly quilts through to large bed-sized quilts, and each of the designs could easily be mixed and matched to form your own personal project. The projects display Tonye’s unique eye for bold colour applications – a number of the quilts feature bold background, such as red and mustard yellow. The shapes in the projects, for which templates are included, are in a naive, hand-drawn style, and the quilts are an engaging mix of modern and traditional.

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Hand-Appliqued Quilts: Beautiful Designs & Simple Techniques is a beautiful book, with plenty of guidance for beginners and more-advanced quilters alike, and plenty of colour and design inspiration for starting your own hand-appliqued quilt. It will definitely be my next source when the urge strikes for a slow-it-down project!

 

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Link Love

by Jules on 20/07/2013

in Link Love

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Stitch :: French Knot Pincushion

Knit :: A Seashell Sundress

Crochet :: Summer Squares Beach Tote

Make :: Embroidery Hoop Tool Cozy

Sew :: Just One Slab (pictured below)

Eat :: Exciting Oatmeal (pictured above)

Read :: Thoughts on Modern Quilting by Bonnie Hunter (of #scrappytripalong fame)

Download :: Stitched Fonts for Free

Missing+U+2

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"Breeze Sunflower Spindle" by Lab Cat “Breeze Sunflower Spindle” by Lab Cat

July is one of my favourite times of the year, and that is because thousands of spinners around the world dedicate a couple of weeks to spinning in the Tour de Fleece. The idea is clear – challenge yourself, spin, and have fun.

This event, started in 2006 by Star Athena on her blog Keep on Knitting In The Free World, is a spin-along that happens for the duration of le Tour de France. Spinners spin on racing days, and rest on rest days. On days when the cyclists are climbing mountains, lots of spinners challenge themselves, by using a difficult technique, or by treadling out amazing lengths of yarn. Over 7000 spinners are registered on the Tour de Fleece Ravelry group, where they encourage one another, chat about their spins and post photos of their fibres and yarns.

9287046915_8a2b3fb53a_b “Why are there so many songs about rainbows?” by Fluid Pudding

Like the cyclists on le Tour, spinners can join teams like the Peloton (main group), Rookies (first years), Sprinters (fast, or high mileage of yarn), Climbers (personal challenge), Breakaway (art yarns), and countless Wildcard teams which may be sponsored, friendship groups, local spinners, spinners who use the same equipment or brand of fibre, or based on just about any interest you can imagine.

Even though I spin all year round, I really love having a dedicated annual spinning event, which reminds me to clear some crafting time and devote it to spinning, and gives me an opportunity to form some spinning goals. This year my own goals are to finish off some yarns that have been works in progress for some time, and to work towards turning fibre stash into usable yarn. I’m not achieving as much as I had hoped, but I’m still glad to be a small part of a worldwide community of spinners, taking some time out to make yarn together.

9270753740_3f7c799b5c_b “Tour de what?” by knitting iris

These images are all from the Tour de Fleece Flickr group. Pop by and have a look at all the gorgeous yarns, wheels, spindles, fibres and finished objects from this year’s Tour.

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