Monday, 25 February 2013

Baby... I'm ready

Well not quite at all, but: THE quilt is made.

It started with a humble triangle.

Which lead to some pieces being joined together...

(This isn't going to be a lengthy tutorial on how to make a quilt - there are far better people qualified to take you through that.)

But maybe you might take from this post: it's not as daunting as it might first seem.

Apart from this part which left my heart pounding long after I'd retired for the night: even after I'd drawn lines to follow - placing all my faith in the washability of the water soluble pen. (It was fine.)

I was so nervous about what was happening on the back of the quilt as I stitched the 3 layers together. Was it bunching or puckering? Were things lining up ok? (No and yes respectively, as it turned out.)

And so the final result is very satisfactory.

Not perfect. But first quilt ever. Done.

Post script: A year or so ago I was (repeatedly) asked by a prepared-to-pay-customer if I'd make her a quilt... my answer was (repeatedly) no. Never done it before. No experience (read: confidence). No time.

My answer would still be no.

But now I have done it, I have a huge new appreciation for those that do make them for paying customers. It's a time consuming process and not cheap (this cost me just under $100 in materials alone). I would retrospectively think twice about the gorgeous quilt I passed over for $150 in an Arrowtown store nearly 3 years ago - where the profit in that supply chain is I'll never know...

Wednesday, 20 February 2013

Where dreams become plans

For many women an important aspect of awaiting a new baby is getting his/her room ready.

I am no exception.

Like many, is a starting point that dishes inspiration up by the bucketful.

Links to the pictures in this post can be found via my board: . None are mine.

Poppytalk: Weekend Project: A Crazy Pom Pom Rug

A (toned down) version of this pom pom rug is on my to-do-list. I can already imagine my toes curling into it at the foot of my feeding chair or beside the cot.

Bunting red colour large letter in this beautiful kids room

I'm definitely going to have a large wooden letter and some form of bunting or garland...

crochet blanket. crochet bunting.

Which may include crocheted triangles...

Bright poms  by.bak -

Or even pom poms. (Or maybe a pom pom rug will be enough of those...)

Kite Tails Quiltsee kate sew: modern ombre + b/w triangle quilt tutorial + patternblack and white and grey cot quilt?

The cot quilt is nearly finished. And has been inspired by many different quilts I saw on Pinterest.

lovely colours. just perfect little boys room.

There's just so much that I adore.


So many ideas.


As much as I admire the minimalists of the world, I fear I will never be one of them.

xx Mel

Saturday, 16 February 2013

Supersized flowers




Imagine the whimsy of a garden dotted with these in various hues for a special celebration...



Wednesday, 13 February 2013

Making memories

It was drawing close to bedtime.

Raining the entire shoot.

And the light was fading.

But we had fun.

Making special memories - awaiting their little one...

I hope you agree it was worth it.


Monday, 11 February 2013


School's back. Life resumes.

No one in this house goes to school.

But we do ballet and playgroup and various other preschool activities that revolve around the school term.

So we're busy again.

The days and weeks are flying by as a consequence.

Which shouldn't matter much to The Penny Drops - it only happens after (that sacred time of) 7pm.

But I am a bit tired just lately.

And the pressure's all mine.

So it's off.

Feet up and slowly pottering away.

Enjoying life.


(P.S. I'm @thepennydrops on instagram if you want to come say hi...)

Thursday, 7 February 2013

Fading light

Fading light

Sleep calls my name

Today drifts

Like the clouds

Into tonight

And tomorrow is another day to shine.


Sunday, 3 February 2013

Good things take time

Nearly 2 years after buying this old chair, I can finally cross it's makeover off my 'to-do' list.

I was too hasty to get a before photo, but here's an idea of it's former ugliness covering.

I don't have an overlocker, but did take the time to zig zag stitch the edges to reinforce them.

But I took plenty of shortcuts - like boxing the corners instead of cutting & sewing side panels.
They turned out pretty well (for a first attempt).

 The sanding and finishing of the woodwork took longer than the sewing.

I opted for a waxed finish on the wood.

The fabric is very hardy and a lovely bluey-grey colour and with a delicate herringbone pattern - and only $12/m. 

I used one metre.

Other shortcuts included not replacing zips (not my forte) - instead I've used some valcro on one cushion, and when that wasn't fun either, I simply hand sewed shut the other cushion.

You can't tell.

And if it ever needs to be removed to wash, it'll be easy to snip it open and sew shut again.

The old chair had a couple of domes that held the cushions securely to the frame.

I'm still using the old domes underneath, with the new fabric hand stitched onto the parts you can see - but you'd never know to look at it.

My lessons learned:
+ Choosing a chair/project that is within your technical proficiency. (No upholstery required here)
+ Take shortcuts where it won't be visible or structurally integral.
+ Use an upholstery weight fabric.
+ Best sewing thing I've ever learned is to invisibly stitch (the ladder stitch - plenty of tutorials online) - if you don't already know how, you won't regret learning this ever.

Saturday, 2 February 2013

Sum of the parts

I'm still working this blogging 'thing' out.

What to include?

How it might fit with 'The Penny Drops' now... and into the future?

So I'm not sure about this post.

But I do intend to be light on words and let my images do the talking.

And I'm pretty excited to have been inside a lighthouse today: Waipapa Point.

And I'm enjoying these photos, showing the lighthouse as it's less often depicted: the sum of it's parts.

And as I've rarely seen it.

Photography has 'rules'.

(That are made to be broken.)

One is: that the sum of the parts can be greater than the whole.

 These sorts of pictures tell a story.

(Oh, and the locals were out in force too...)

Photography post-script: I was pretty happy with the 'SOOC' (straight out of the camera) images. But because I could, I applied a light sepia filter, tweaked the levels a bit and straightened a couple of horizons (because you can't always shoot straight when you're standing on a ladder 3 floors up - and 22 weeks pregnant - or with a two-year old on your hip - that's my excuse anyway).