Wednesday, 25 February 2009

colour weaving

Its been way too long since I have done any quilting so today was the day and I cherished every moment of it!
Q:What do you get when you cross this blue fabric


With this green fabric?


Answer: An eye-popping colourful quilt!


I have had a book called "simply stunning woven quilts" by Anna Faustino for a while and just havent been inspired enough to get started....until today. I am so pleased with the results and its was just soo much fun to do. Now the question is....where do I go from here? Do I add some applique or just leave the colours to speak for themselves? Hmm need to think about that. I would love to hear your ideas.
On another note...last week I met up with a lovely quilter, Ada from Canada who got in contact with me via my blog. Her daughter lives here in Singapore and they were coming to visit so she asked if we could meet. We had a lovely morning sharing stories and photos of quilts. Thanks Ada for a lovely morning. You can check out her blog at www.thelight-heartedquilter.blogspot.com. Quilters are such lovely people no matter where they are from!

Monday, 16 February 2009

Bangkok

Last week my mother in law and I spent some time in Bangkok. It was the first time that either of us had been there and it was quite an eye-opener. Bangkok is busy and dirty but there is so much to see and do! We arrived on the Monday afternoon and soon settled into our hotel. We went for dinner at the revolving restaurant at the top floor of our hotel. This gave us great views over chinatown and towards the city. The Tuesday morning we were booked into a tour of the palace and of the temples. We visited the reclining Buddha temple which houses a huge gold Buddha, then went on to the palace. This palace gets up to 10,000 visitors a day so we were glad that we went in the morning. There were temples all throughout the palace grounds as well as beautiful murals which were decorated with gold leaf. We actually saw them adding the gold leaf then hand painting the details. It was painstaking work! Our guide tried his very best to tell us as much as he could about the history of the palace but we did struggle a bit with his english which was a bit disjointed. That evening we went to a Thai dance and dinner at the theatre. We had fantastic seats and the show was really good. It took us a while to get there as the traffic was really bad.


On Wednesday we did the bike tour which started off in the heart of chinatown and took us through the wetmarkets and through all the little alleyways of chinatown. From there we went on the boat across the river to the more rural area of Bangkok. Parts of Bangkok are incredibly poor with some houses (shacks) barely out of the water. Despite this, everywhere you went the Thai people were friendly and waved. It was a great way to see Bangkok and I would highly recommend it to anyone going there. I was a bit concerned about my ability to ride as Im not a great bike rider but even I could easily do this. The trip was well organised and plenty of water was provided as well as a delicious thai lunch along the way. Our tour guides all spoke good english as well as quite a bit of dutch. The bike ride was certainly the highlight of our trip! (http://www.covankessel.com/)

On the last evening we decided to do a dinner boat cruise on the river. The food was ok but we did find the cruise a bit disappointing. We both got eaten by mosquitoes on the boat.

Bangkok was busy, dirty and traffic was chaos.(crossing on a pedestrian crossing was extremely dangerous!) It was a great couple of days. Next time we would like to do the River Kwai tour and see some of the outlying areas of Bangkok.
I just loved this photo of the policeman - mask over his face complete with whistle!
Sadly my mother in law has gone back to Holland today - two weeks earlier than planned as her sister in law is very ill. Hopefully she will be able to come back to Singapore later in the year.

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Sunday, 8 February 2009

sashiko

Newsflash!

Remember how I said that I was doing some knitting? well I have discovered that knitting is just not my thing! (and Im pretty terrible at it) so I thought that I would try my hand at some sashiko (japanese embroidery) instead.

I am in the process of making some coasters for on my coffee table to replace the glass ones that keep smashing when dropped on our marble tiled floor.

I have borrowed two nice books about sashiko from one of the ladies at the dutch craft group. I have finished stitching two of them already. I think with a bit of practice I should be able to get the stitches pretty even. Its nice to do some hand stitching again.
Tomorrow my mother in law and I are off to Bangkok for a few days and are planing to do a cycling tour. We have heard great things about this tour and we are looking forward to a couple of days away and seeing some of the city. Neither of us have been to Thailand before so it should be quite an eye opener.
I will post some pictures when we get back.
We went to St Georges church this morning and we all really enjoyed the service. There were quite a few people there that we knew from school and a couple from our home church in NZ as well as my daughters school teacher from NZ. Isnt the world a small place!
Well thats all for now folks!
Marianne

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

Where did January go?



It seems like ages since my last post. Life has been busy since returning home and January seems to have just disappeared. My mother in law arrived the week after we got home as well as my nephew Gerald and his friend Marco. It was lovely to see everyone and the boys went and did their own thing which was nice and easy. I have been busy sightseeing with my mother in law as she didnt get to do much of that when she was here in May. We have been on a bus tour of Singapore as well as a boat criuse on the harbour in a chinese junk and have been to Sentosa Island. We went to Chinatown the week before new years celebrations and thankfully we went early in the day as by lunch time it was pretty busy not to mention hot. There was lots to see as it was nearly chinese new year. Everything was very red and gold.

We have seen a few lion (or dragon) dancers both in the zoo and around the condo. I think they go around the houses delivering good fortune. The ones in the zoo were really good and were jumping on posts about a metre off the ground. Im not sure how they could see anything under the giant lion mask but it was impressive. There is a great zoo in Singapore and I would strongly recommend it to anyone coming to Singapore. The orchid gardens are lovely too.

I am still thinking about what project to do next. The dutch craft group that I go to has decided to knit jersey's for aids children in Africa. I actually picked up a pair of knitting needles and knitted!!!! For those that know me well, that is quite a feat. I think I will stick to sewing for now and get my mother in law to finish it (she's an expert). I will probably start some shashiko (japanese embroidery) although I am also keen to start a fabric weaving project. I will keep you posted
The pictures that I did in my art class have been framed will be on display at our school international night. My children and a couple of other kiwis at the school will be doing some traditional maori songs. I'm looking forward to it although Im not sure if my kids are!
Next week my mum in law and I are off to Bangkok to go on a bike tour.(some shopping too). Cant wait!