Tuesday, 30 September 2008

BQL Bag Challenge - September bag finished

Finished - yeah - though the hand quilting is barely visible and on reflection a bit sparse. I may pick the lining open and add some more stitching - 5 inch circles with a linen yarn and a sashiko type stitch. I now realise I 'under-trimmed' the log cabin square, it should have turned into a rectangle. It's great as it is though. Each month I vow to start the next bag as soon as the month begins, though I do like to see how other peoples bags turn out.

Monday, 29 September 2008

Ikea Mosque - T1 Skirt

OK, so there isn't a mosque at Ikea, but at the Ikea exit from the motorway they have been building a mosque. Most 'new' mosques here are quite square with domed roofs, and perhaps smaller domes as well. They all have the minaret and outside area. This one has piqued my interest as the entire mosque is the dome - I found the road to the site, it's structurally finished and now being clad with white marble. Being a Sunday there were just 2 workers on site. What I didn't realise was that the structure wasn't one dome but 2 quarters of different size spheres. I guess the gap will be filled with glass, there is a obvious alignment to Mecca, I wonder how this will work in the rain water filled area of the courtyard. The 'tables' (proper word anyone?) for funerals are quite neat too. I'm really quite impressed by the architecture, and will keep my eye on the media - there was no board up saying the name of the mosque or architect. I saw this new Istanbul mosque in the media too.

Now the fun part - this is the security guy from the neighbouring compound, coming to tell me it was 'forbidden' - what exactly was forbidden I didn't hang around to find out!

T1 chose the fabric and ribbon for the lazy days skirt - she likes pink - it's a super easy pattern. She can wear this to school, no worries (plus I have another meter of the fabric) I did however slightly change the elastication, using some adjustable elastic and a button.

Sunday, 28 September 2008

Hilton Hotel

This is the mosaic under the main entrance canopy outside the Hilton Hotel - I guess few people look towards the sky. I've been there quite a few times and only noticed it this week.
I had 'fun' taking the pictures for tomorrows post earlier today - I also managed to make the skirt for T1.

Saturday, 27 September 2008

Outgoing & Incoming mail

These are the finished cards that got sent Thursday morning. They go to my artsnthemail Neoclour group. These worked really well and are edged in variegated cotton knitting yarn.

The left card is from Donnely, a shaker card, there are beads trapped under a layer of plastic, the card with the heart is from Lourdes, her 'wholecloth' card
This red card from Dianne completes the 'rainbow' trade
This is 'September' from Lori

G43 card from Charlotte
This batch has restored my faith in fair play, one card being from a trade in December 2007, I didn't expect it to arrive, I was slightly confused in case I'd joined a trade and forgotten about it (has happened before!) but was thrilled to receive it.

Friday, 26 September 2008

21 & 142

21 hours without electricity, 142 emails waiting - the whole day with no power, high winds and horizontal rain... it was a yucky day.
But.... yesterday was fun - the wool shop - I was looking for dark grey cotton yarn for edging some cards - amongst this lot, but there was none. The shop had a second wall nearly full of tapestry kits, I've never seen them for sale here. It was a 'new' shop to me.

Then a walk up 'Bursa Pasage' I've spotted this enclosed alley a while back, but never managed to get there - It was illuminating - there was a umbrella repair shop, several small haberdashers, different fabric stores - and one I shopped in. I want to make T1 a couple of skirts for school. I like this pattern, but am kicking myself as they had some fine pink needle cord - I wish I'd got a meter. Then onto the outlet place I like - they often have nothing but I got lucky, where I got 3 'Boden' tops for less than a latte each! I was so excited I forgot to go to their kids store down the road... next time...

Then to the 'fancy fabrics' store - this is big and stuffed to the rafters - it has luscious bridal, and fancy evening wear fabrics - and the hugest selection of different qualities of net. T1 'needs' a costume for the big Halloween party - it'll be a variation on a fairy/princess dress - with a sequined boob tube.....and pink of course. T2 wants to be Spider man - which is beyond me - I don't sew Lycra - lets hope he can be persuaded into his 'Zorro' Costume again - with the cape it makes a fabulous Dracula. Of course this was all topped off by a brief stop at my favourite haberdashers for elastic, buttons and ribbon.

Thursday, 25 September 2008

More Neo Colour

This is how it dried out - really too light - nice, but not what I was after - a more graphic image rather than pale and interesting. I didn't like the scratchy crayon marks either, so, I over crayoned each circle with the exact same colour and re-wet it. I then went out for 5 hours. When I got back - this is how it was (below) - the bleeding had intensified and the dots were still 'solid' mmmmm.... now to chop it up and make the postcards.
I also got postcards in the mail but will upload them Friday as it'll be a really busy day and I doubt I will make anything - though I do need another zip and my Osmanbay haberdashery shop is en-route.

Tuesday, 23 September 2008


The full length - dry - all the threads snipped.
Detail - Dry.

Wet - It'll mix and mingle more, and slowly dry out for the morning. The colours are quite vibrant, they will tone down a little when it drys out, exciting. I'll see what it's like tomorrow and may work on it again.

Monday, 22 September 2008

Neo Colour Spots

I managed to piece the front and back of the bag before I FME'ed the dots whilst baby napped.
The ends are being snipped off tonight ready to work on tomorrow, I'm not sure how many cards this will yield, perhaps 12 or so, it's an odd size and I'll need to play with it when they are ready to chop.
Unfortunately 3 weeks of Turkish homework languishes, my next class is tomorrow, I hope that I can squeeze it in tomorrow before the class. Another grey day here - what's happened to summer?

Sunday, 21 September 2008


It's been a grey, miserable, rainy, cool day - one of those long Sundays that never seem to end. Though I did manage to finish off 12 of the log cabins, fix the waistband of T2's trousers and mark up some fabric for the Neo-colour trade - due in the mail Thursday, that will be tight, but I'll try. As expected they will be spots, I marked up some crisp white cotton. I'll iron on some interfacing on the back then FME on top of the circles. Colour then play with water - watch this space! really these crayons are like magic, you wet them and the result is great, but you leave it to dry and the result changes subtly, and is even better. Just lots of spots to FME again......

Saturday, 20 September 2008

Blue Dots

This one has been hanging around, but is now stitched as much as it will be - the photo somehow misses some of the messy-ness and dynamism of the cross and seed stitch and makes it look a emptier than it is. I have 18 'sunspots' cards ready to edge so will have a mass finishing session.

I moved onto this one, hoping to emulate the feel of the blue wrapping paper. I made 2 circles to stitch to, but found that stitch was too long and either puckered the fabric or didn't stay straight or flat. So onto the next plan - it was a organic type of move, rather than a plan. Will see how it pans out.
No real sewing today. Littles, errands and a birthday party this afternoon. I was thrilled to see I've got to 500 visitors and 40 countries, though 'Europe' isn't really a country. It's great to see that someone from say Oman has visited. I love this ticker on Dijanne's blog - though she has WAY more visitors and countries

Friday, 19 September 2008

BQL Bag Challenge - September in progress

I worked on the log cabins for the bag during baby's nap, and as I half thought - there wasn't enough fabric, I had discarded one piece from the original pull, but have cut that now along with more of the check, which will be the handle also, I had hoped for a log cabin inside pocket, maybe from the trimmings I'll be able to get that together.
I went out this with girlfriends tonight some haven't seen me since the summer, since then I've gone down about 6 or so dress sizes, it was a bit of a surprise for them - a good surprise. It was a fun night out, nice food, great conversation, no children.....

Thursday, 18 September 2008

BQL Bag Challenge - September

I pulled and cut the fabric today - though I'm hoping there is enough as I have no more of it except the pink and yellow check..... these were trimmings from a quilt I made in New York for the Ronald McDonald home way back in 2000 or near abouts - I've just been waiting for the right project to use these babies on. The bag is a log cabin on point. I need to organise the purchase of the zip too - maybe I can get this locally, then again it may be an excuse to go to my favourite haberdashery shop.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Wrapping - Paper - Tissues

Tissue boxes here are great - it's always a dilemma about which one to buy. Plain or fancy they are the same price, this pink box just got finished - due to baby kindly giving her cold to nearly everyone she knows.... generous wee soul she is.
Below is wrapping paper, I love these circles and am thinking of doing stitching something like this on one of those 'reject' blue circles. Maybe tomorrow.

Monday, 15 September 2008


No sewing really today, 10 minutes working on the sunspot panel, and about the same stitching X's while the computer took it's sweet time - Sunspots is nearly finished, just a few more suns and spots - I've been working on this circle from the 'rejects' pile, though it needs a ton of stitching on it - the dark X's are linen thread which is awful to sew with.

This evening someone has been very busy letting off fireworks - why? in honour of the full moon - who knows - you know? put it in the comments - there are a lot of fireworks.

Sunday, 14 September 2008

Istanbul Modern - Kilic Ali Pasha

I finally got to the Istanbul Modern Gallery today, it's in what seems to be an old warehouse, and surrounded by other warehouses. It has a rather beautiful clock tower and the most fantastic views. It's not so big, just 2 floors, but beautifully laid out with some interesting exhibits. I've been reading about Bedri Rahmi Eyüboğlu - a self portrait was on display, that met my exact visual for him - kind of weird as I recognised him before I read the label. There were quite a few video installations, baby was quite taken by them, the view from the cafe is quite stunning - quintessentially Istanbul - though getting a table there today was like hen's teeth. No pictures, next time though.

We had an explore around the area, I got some fabulous pictures, though I need to figure out exactly what I found. It's not in our guide books, though the 'best' one is 12 years old. Figure we need a new one.

One thing that knocks Americans out is the 'age' of Europe, this mosque is really quite stunning, the picture is of the back, not the usual angle. It was built by Sinan, between 1580 and 1587. I need to figure out how to get inside it, I was there at prayer time so it was a no go anyway. Downside to the area - rats with wings - lots of pigeons - yukk...

Saturday, 13 September 2008

Old Cards

Today was one of those days where I seemed to be busy but got nothing done, a trip to the hairdressers, dry cleaners and supermarket (as T1 informed me that there was no candy in the house and of course candy is an essential food group if you want peace on a Saturday morning) all before 10am - then to T1 and T2's school for a parent - teacher meeting, which was 'interesting', my first one. Their teacher is lovely - and above her they like her.
Then an afternoon, juggling baby, playing referee and learning the alphabet. T1 surprised us by being able to write the numbers 1-4, though we don't know who has taught her and she's not forthcoming with that piece of information.

These cards go back to April 2007, again the spots theme, the title of the trade was circles. I like the method of making a larger piece and chopping it up. It sounds 'easy' but you do have to plan placement so that each card is interesting, or figure out a way to embellish the cards once chopped up. This has couched perle cotton to make the graphic lines and is fused cotton on to commercial felt. It worked well and produced 12 cards.I might get to sew tomorrow... I hope...

Friday, 12 September 2008


I spent the morning waiting for the iron to be fixed, they had started when I arrived but were waiting for me to get there to see what I wanted them to do (since they didn't take my phone number) the shock of the car ride to the repair shop had half fixed the problem - the rest was fixed with 'medicine' - a professional de-scale, as I had apparently been using 'sweet' water that has too much sediment and had clogged the tank up - I have now been instructed which brands of water to use.
Baby was less than impressed by a 'quick trip' out with no stroller, so we wandered the streets around the repair shop, checking the area, a very interesting Fire Station, 2 churches, a mosque built in 1789, or 1879 and some fantastic old wooden buildings. This is a busy area of the city and taking sly photos was the order of the day, but with baby in my arms there were quite a few that didn't come out, plus there was a traditional Turkish quilter that I could see, but was closed. Another trip down there, another day, after Ramadan, without baby.
I did manage to do some more work on the sunspot length, but no pictures.

Thursday, 11 September 2008

Incoming mail

A case of the blahs today, plus the task of dealing with the broken iron 10 months into a 2 year guarantee. At least the repair shop was 'near' and in a row of prime Wordless Wednesday buildings - only I forgot my camera, no worries as I have to go back tomorrow. I just hope it's fixed as it's a great iron. I get through an iron at least once a year, usually in the last week of the guarantee. This one might just last 2 years. I have a collection of irons with leaking water tanks, dings and other 'minor' problems. I need to get at least one of these fixed - they fix these things in Turkey rather than just trash them, which is great, but then again, you need to take them to the repair shop... lots of other domestic bits happening, no sewing, baby on the mend.
2 nice bits of mail -

Neocolour cards from Kate - I read Kate's blog daily and we have a frighteningly large number of things in common. I also had an email from a ex NY friend, who I've not seen for nearly 7 years, and was thinking about today - maybe one day I'll get to Maine - it was a nicely timed mail, feeling less blah-ey now.

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