When I am a zombie, I will eat S'mores.  These are the kinds of conversations that we have in the Facebook group for Quilt Design a Day (#qdad) which has grown into a terrific mix of people sharing their style and quilt design interests. Conceptually, Anne nailed it with this exercise group - fast sketches, daily choice of inspiration from design-seeds, and a group with just the right mix of witty banter and encouragement.  Starting a new job and a bit travel beforehand meant, that I've fallen off the 3-times-a-week wagon; but I haven't given up completely and still make time when I can.

I wanted to share some of the designs I've done since the first batch that I shared. I won't bore you with all of them.
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Not everything goes according to plan. It may start well. You think you've paired the right fabric with the right pattern, even if it isn't quite your normal style. The pattern is in another language, but you still manage to follow along. The pieces all fit together. The edges finish nicely. You even sew all the buttonholes without a hitch.

Then you stand back and shake your head. You realize that you've made something that looks like an Australian school uniform.
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What have you been making?  It's an innocuous question. As crafters and bloggers, it is one that we get frequently. There's a strange assumption in the blog world; when someone hasn't posted recent projects, they must be stockpiling them for publication or hoarding top secret fabric.

...if only my life were so covert. 

If you would like to see finished things though, make sure you pencil in the Modern Quilt Show on May 3rd and 4th in Berry, NSW.
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It's hard to believe that we'd find ourselves on the road again so quickly after our road trip to Western Australia. We're budget conscious travelers though, and that means we can squeeze in a few extra trips now and then. This time we were celebrating Craig's 41st birthday. That's almost an old man number, isn't it?

Because the weather was grim right around Australia, we carved out a path through the southeastern part of the country ducking between storm clouds and moving as they swooped in.
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Many months ago, I was chatting with a friend at our bar knitting group. She said something that resonated with me. By its very nature, crafting is one of the few hobbies where a tangible outcome is expected. People play and watch sports, but they aren't expected to have something physical when they are done. People read books and watch movies, but they aren't expected to present a report every time they do. People surf all day with little more than a suntan to show for it.
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Denham has a buckled jetty set over a deep channel that cuts through an otherwise shallow bay.  Its sides are warped. Its boards are aged. Its pretty much perfect.

Located on the midwest coast of Western Australia on a far flung peninsula, Denham is a place of solitude and wonder. The clean coastal waters of Shark Bay are teeming with more sea life than you can imagine.

I've been struggling to write our Coral Coast Holiday posts from our trip last month because with writing them comes the admission that the trip is over. We are fortunate to travel quite a bit, but this particular holiday resonated with us. I don't know if it was staying in caravan parks, preparing for life on the road, or the joy of seeing new spaces; in any case, the Coral Coast feels like somewhere that we need to be.

I've been sewing in bits and pieces lately.  I finished up a swap with a pretty neat sewing machine set, but forgot to take photos of the finish before I popped it in the mail. I made another flat cap. My happiest sewing were these Economy blocks for Melanie for the small Australian must.stash bee.

She requested 5" finished blocks inspired by some of the gorgeous examples popping up on Flickr in the last couple of years.
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Recently on Flickr, Michelle popped up photos of a new market tote bag pattern that she's working on. Along with being completely smitten with the railroad stripe chambray, I quickly fell for the shape of the bag. I might have harassed her a bit leaving an excessive number of comments about the bag. My efforts paid off as she allowed me to pattern test the Molly Market Tote for her.

I finished my bag yesterday, and I can already see myself making a few more of these.
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Although I haven't been sewing much lately, I've managed to harness my creative mojo in a few different ways. Must of that inspiration has come from friends. When Bec took a sign painting course, I picked up brushes. When Anne started doing creativity exercises in the form of a Quilt Design A Day, I joined in on the fun.

Anne uses one of the two daily images from Design Seeds to steer her in terms of palette and shape. From there, she gives herself 15-30 minutes to turn out a quilt design.
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