2018: Year in Review

Thinking back on last year, I immediately frown and wonder just what it was I actually did during the year that could hold some significance for me.

At first I was all like, ‘nahh. Nothing happened that could really hold up in a blog post, detailing my life in and around my sewing room!’

But then a simple scroll through my Instagram and all of a suddenly I have a hurried, messy scribble of a list detailing all of the wonderful events and creative pursuits I managed to fit into the year!

So, listing in chronological order, let’s review the year that was 2018!


I always like starting the year off with a bang! This usually means a big holiday/cruise somewhere warm and exotic! This way, during those times in the year where I feel a little worn down, crushed by societal expectations and it’s noisiness I can reflect on the one thing that bought joy and happiness to my life and I can remember what it’s like to be happy and carefree once more…

Was that a little bit too deep and depressing for a beginning paragraph? Oops! My bad!


What I was trying to say before going off on a weird tangent, four days into 2018 my parents, some family friends and I sailed away to visit New Zealand! Although it was my second time visiting, I loved every. Single. Minute!

We visited all of the major city/towns along the east coast of the country and even got the opportunity to visit Hobbiton! It was the best day ever.

I did a vlog series on my YouTube channel, filming and documenting the highlights of our trip. I recently watched it back and had totally forgotten just how awesome and fun our holiday together was!

I can’t wait to go back!


While on our cruise to The Long White Cloud, another little Rolfe entered our family! Zayne Paul arrived on the 6th, healthy, happy and endlessly squishy and sweet!

We celebrated his 1st Birthday two days ago. (Seriously, where has the time gone!)


The end of January saw me finally piece together my mammoth Pixelated Rose Quilt top. I made it a priority to get it finished by months end to then begin quilting it. As of today, this quilt is half basted, roughly folded and hung loveless over a chair in our living room.

HOWEVER!! This sad outcome will change very soon! Plans are in motion for this darling to be completed this year – and very soon too! (Fingers crossed!)


I got a new sewing machine, baby!! Whoo!

I spent a ridiculous amount of money on a new gadget that I knew would become one of my most beloved and treasured items that I own!

It’s taken us a little while to bond and get used to each other but I think we’ve got there. We’re in tune with what needs to get done, how to get it done and with what force, strength and/or delicacy the project at hand needs.

The machine I bought is a Brother PQ1500SL.


On the 1st of February, I finished piecing together an old-ish WIP I had piled in a sad and dusty corner of my sewing room. And so my Simple Cross Quilt was born! I went on to finish this about a week later, with it being the first quilt I ever quilted with my new sewing machine.

I love this quilt so much. The pops and clashes of colour and print, the fun and whimsical cat print on the back to the classic gingham binding I wrapped the quilt in.

Ohmph!! 😍

It’s simplistic yet busy nature makes my heart sing and my face smile every time I see it!


In late February I began Swooning around! Te-he! 😜

I became more serious and put more focus into making Swoon blocks just because, you know!

It was a block I’ve also wanted to make and piece into a quilt so I took the opportunity by the… well you know what, and just cut, pieced, pressed and repeat until I had nine beautiful blocks. (These were pieced together in May and the quilt top is stilling waiting for attention from me!)


Cracking on to May, while a Swoon Quilt top lay in the shadows waiting for me to find it again, I started a new Quilt Along series on my YouTube channel!

We delved into the world of mini blocks. A concept that I’ve introduced a few times on my channel in various block tutorials but never as a complete set to be then pieced together into a quilt/wallhanging.

All nine block tutorials have been made and published and now everyone is just waiting for me to get off my behind and publish the finishing steps in the QAL! (It’s coming, I promise!!)


This month saw me finish another WIP that had been lying unloved somewhere in a deep recess of our house!

I’ve always loved this Friendship Star Quilt. The colourful geometric triangle print, the bold white square centers and then a richly dark and comforting navy background tying all of the elements together!

This quilt has been a real labour of love over the year, having been quilted once and then having all of the stitches ripped out because I hated my terrible attempt at FMQ!

The quilt has been scarred from this. At times you can see a faint messy snail trail, a ghost of where past stitches have been. I love that these lines add a history and a story to its journey of finally being finished!

The finishing touches to this quilt are perfect! The backing is spot on with the colours in the print in the blocks and the binding I used was the exact same fabric I initially was going to use when I first starting making plans for this quilt. The label is pretty perfect too if I may say!!


And then came July. A month where I cut off all of my thick, long and wavy hair and opted for a shorter and swishy bob cut that I’ve thankfully loved over the past 6 months!


And can you believe it?! I finished piecing together another very old WIP!

I think the very first FPP Union Jack blocks I made were back in 2012?!?! And here it is, 2018 and I finally sashed and pieced them into a beauty of a quilt top! I had completely forgot how many I had actually made and couldn’t believe all of the different and fun prints I matched together.

Again, this quilt top is still hanging by (literally) for me to remember it and eventually finish it! I think I have cause for enthusiasm to finish it this year as in (quickly checks the calendar…) 7 and a half months, I’ll be on a big jet plane rocketing towards the UK!! Eeeeee!!! London baby!! 🇬🇧


I cheekily started a new quilt top also. I began, quite out of the blue, making Lucky Star blocks. Inspired by my Simple Cross Quilt, I wanted to make another where the solid background fabrics where different in each one, with the colours clashing on either side of the blocks and creating distinctive squares and patterns.

So far, I’ve made five, with another two ready to be cut and pieced. I’m hoping to make nine blocks all up which I think will make a pretty decent sized quilt.


I became addicted to making colourful Hexie Flower blocks. I would sit for hours basting 2.5” hexies and then stitching them into funky flower templates.

I also found a love for glue basting in lieu of using chunky and time-consuming applique paper. Don’t get me wrong, I love how great HeatnBond is for applique etc, but when it comes to wanting a quick fix, so to speak, fabric basting glue is the best! 👌🏻


The months before December all went by with a blur, with nothing too exciting really happening. (The true narrative of my life.)

With December, however, comes Vlogmas! And Vlogmas very quickly turns into a month that is fast, chaotic, stressful, oh-so Christmassy and is jammed packed full of birthdays for our family!

As much as it stresses me out, I strangely and truly love doing Vlogmas. It gently and very quickly forces me to be productive, creative, savvy in my time management skills and gives me an odd sense of purpose and contentment. How people daily vlog all year round, I got no idea! My head isn’t big enough to feel all of those emotions all day everyday!

During Vlogmas, I got so many things made and finished! Two projects I’ve always wanted to make were finally ticked off the list! An Advent Calendar and a Christmas Tree Skirt!

Both projects were a labour of love but so much fun to make!!


And that’s kinda it…

I literally haven’t sewn a thing since last year!

I’ve had a much needed break away from everything, re-assessed what I want to achieve and accomplish this year and have set the wheels in motion with a new blog theme, a new 3and3quarters logo and a set of goals that I’ll be sharing in my next post!

Bring on 2019!



My 2018 Sewing Goals

Did you know that 2018 marks my seventh year of blogging?! Seven years! Where has the time gone from when I was a shy 23 year old, tentatively entering the scary waters of online blogging? It seems like a life-time ago!

Anyhoo! A new year has started (even though we’re four months in already!! Eek!) and my precious little blog has been screaming out for some love and attention.

November… November was the last time I sat down, logged on and typed my little heart away catching you all up on my Sewing Room Adventures.

With lots of fun and laughs in between, April (!!) has now rolled around and it’s time to put my 2018 Sewing Goals out into the void, hoping that each one will get accomplished before 2019 creeps up on us!


+ Simple Cross Quilt (My first finish for 2018! Whoo!!) +

What started out as a basic WIP first started in 2016, I dug these blocks out, quickly whipped up another nine to make the quilt top a 5×5 block pattern and as though it was just like over night, the quilt is finished, including a label! (Go me!)

I love everything about this quilt! The colours, the prints, the texture from the quilting, the kitty-cat backing (!!!) and the fun gingham binding finishing it all off.

This had to be one of the easiest and quickest (minus the blocks sitting unfinished for two years!) quilts I’ve ever made and I just adore it!

Wanna make this block?? Click here for the tutorial! (You’re welcome! x)

+ Pixelated Rose Quilt +

This little beauty of quilt has been on the go since May of last year. Over the past 7-8 months, I’ve been chipping away at building each individual block together to make up the whole. And now that all of the blocks have been joined together, a mammoth quilt top that I wasn’t expecting has emerged and the procrastination brakes have been applied at full force!

About a month or so has passed since the top has been finished and low and behold it’s still hanging in the same place (on a side hutch in our kitchen as it’s the only place big enough to house the size of this baby!). Every day I look at it and think, I really need to give this quilt top some more love!

It’s not that I don’t want to finish it… It’s just applying the time to rearranging the whole house to accommodate the size of the quilt so that I can back and baste it and then have the available time and space in my sewing room to get it quilted. (Whew!) I have a lot things happening in my little sewing room, so allotting time/space for sewing, filming tutorials, quilting etc, is a tricky one at best!

BUT, enough with the excuses!! Simple fact of the matter, is that this quilt top needs to be quilted and deserves to be finished (cos it’s soooo pretty!), by me, by at least the end of the year! (That still gives me some wriggle room to procrastinate a little bit more, right?!)

Wanna make this quilt?? Click here for the free downloadable pattern from the Riley Blake website! (You’re welcome! x)

+ Swoon Quilt +

Now this. This is what I’m working on right now and am absolutely LOVING IT!!

For ages I’ve wanted to dive in and make a humongous Swoon Quilt! I’ve lusted and envied over so many beautiful versions of it in my Instagram and Pinterest feeds. This year, I thought, what the heck! Let’s add another make into the mix and see how far I get with it!

You see, one of the main goals I had this year was to simply make more quilts. To find the time to do some more ‘me’ sewing. Projects that I make only for myself without doing a tutorial or some sort step-by-step guide on how to do it. I just wanted a few quilts that I could make for me and my itchy-hands! And this Swoon Quilt represents just that!

So far, I’m 8 blocks in to a 9 block quilt top, using fabrics that just simply catch my eye while making the Swoon design pop from afar!

Wanna make a Swoon Quilt too?? Click here to find the pattern! (You’re welcome! x)

+ Rediscovering ‘Like Diamonds In The Sky’ Quilt Top (Quilt name will be changing!) +

Within the last week or so, I rediscovered an old favourite quilt top that I started sometime in 2014. It features a block that I made as a tutorial on my YouTube channel called the Friendship Star.

I had started quilting this one but ended up really hating the choice of quilting I chose to do. (Free Motion Quilting really isn’t my thing!) I think it’s taken me about three years, on and off, to unpick all of the stitches to free the quilt top from the batting and awful backing fabric I paired with it. (Lot’s of decisions were made with this quilt that were just wrong, wrong, wrong!) Now the time has come to re-write those wrongs and finish this quilt to a beautiful standard that I’m absolutely happy with!

To be honest with you, I actually really love this quilt top. And always have! The blocks are bright and vivid while the overall design is still quite dark and subtle because of the navy solid background. It’s such a perfect balance.

I’m thinking for quilting, just to keep it really simple. Straight-line grid criss-cross across the entire surface (hey, it’s what I do best!) and then do a contrasting binding to bring everything together. Super easy!

Wanna make a Friendship Star block too?? Click here for the tutorial! (You’re welcome! x)

Now, moving onto a few quilts/projects that aren’t in the current making but are the list to do this year…

+ Christmas Quilt +

I am so determined to make a Christmas Quilt this year! If I didn’t have about a gazillion other things on my plate right now, I would’ve started it an hour ago!

Whenever Christmas rolls around, I’m always so bummed that I don’t have a beautiful festive themed quilt to pull out and enjoy throughout the season. (Even though Christmas in Australia is during Summer and having the need for a snuggly heavy quilt anywhere near you is totally out of the question!)

The pattern that I’m itching to start is one by Thimble Blossoms (the same lady who designed the Swoon Block/Quilt) called, Winterville.

It’s such a super cute pattern and I’ve already been collecting little bits of fabric for the houses and little Ohio Star blocks. It’s gonna look great once it’s finished!

+ Christmas Tree Skirt +

Another Christmas project I’ve been wanting to make for years now… A Christmas Tree Skirt!

I came across the perfect pattern quite randomly when I was replenishing our paper patterns stock at work one day. It’s a McCalls’s pattern (M7704) and features the sweetest gingerbread people paired with Christmas Trees and Christmas candies. I just thought the designs together were really lovely and are totally the type of design I love around this time of year.

The pattern looks quite simple and straightforward, with the option to mix lots of designs together into one final skirt for the tree. Perfect!

+ Winter Jacket +

This one was a project I had wanted to make for winter last year (so we’re looking at around May 2017 sometime…) but is yet to leave the bag it came home in!

I think I’ve written about this one before… But anyhoo, I just really wanted to make myself a really nice jacket that I could wear to and from work or on nights out during the colder months. I have made a winter jacket before when I was briefly at uni one year in my mid twenties. But it’s quite amateurish and the fabric I chose is really quite awful. Perfect excuse to make another one, right? Right!

The pattern I hope to make/follow is by Simplicity (1254), is fully lined and has a weird collar/hood thingy that looks intimidating as heck to make!

I’m no dressmaker and possess very little patience for it, but with grit and determination, I’m gonna give it a go and see where I end up!

(Please send chocolate and lots of encouraging hugs! Thanks! x)

+ New Sewing Machine +

So I treated myself to a new sewing machine a few months ago… Yep. All for the sake of being able to quilt my massive Pixelated Rose Quilt that I haven’t started quilting yet.

In all honestly, I was ready for an upgrade. My previous machine (a Brother Innovis 200QE), as brilliant and perfect it is, was becoming a bit too small for the types of quilts I’m moving into making this year. (They’re all big ‘uns! God help me!) My new Brother (a PQ1500SL) is huge! It’s powerful, fast, roomy, does everything I ask of it and more and I just want to use it all day, everyday! (Hence all of these beautiful Swoon Blocks popping up in my Instagram feed!)

If you didn’t see it, I recently filmed a very honest review about this machine on my YouTube channel. (I also did an unboxing vlog too if you’re interested!) I went through the pros and cons I’ve found with the machine along with elements I’ll get used to as I sew with it more. From the comments left on the video, I think it’s been quite insightful for people to watch especially those who were/are planning on buying the same sewing machine.

+ YouTube Catch Up +

While on the subject of my YouTube channel, I’ve been uploading lots since I last wrote on here…

Vlogmas – 2017

We’ve had Christmas where I did a thing called Vlogmas. Basically I vlogged everyday during December right up to Christmas Day (which I also filmed!). I really thought I would struggle do it but I actually really enjoyed it and fell in love with vlogging and creating that kind of content for my channel. Everyone who watched was so supportive and encouraging and I think we kinda bonded a bit more which I love!

In January I went to New Zealand and vlogged it too! I went with my parents and some family friends and had an absolute blast! I can’t wait for the day I get to go back and explore more!

February and March have been a mix of a few more vlogs, some tutorials and stuff all about my new sewing machine!

Over the next few weeks, I’m hoping to launch a new Quilt Along series on my channel (and here on my blog too)! Inspired by a viewer, this time around we’re focusing on mini block designs, with all of the blocks we’ll be making measuring a sweet 5″ square! Each block pattern has been written up and (somewhat) finalised, I have just a few smaller details I need to sort out before realising the series out into the world, block by block as I’ve done in the past.

Stay tuned for that coming very soon!


So that’s everything! It’s been a world-wind few months and so much stuff has been crammed in. (With more to come!)

I’m hoping I’ll also be able to dedicate some more time to writing here, on my blog. I’ve always enjoyed the process of blog writing and feel so relaxed and lighter once I hit that ‘publish’ button. I love sharing what I’m doing and hope to do in my sewing room with you and love hearing the awesome feedback you guys always give me!

Let’s make 2018 a productive one full of lots more quilts, crafty projects and good times with family and friends!

Happy Sewing, Friends!