The past 6 months have been really crazy busy. Between work and home, I have had little time to focus on anything else. So with the start of the mid year school holidays, I decided to go on a little road trip. Just me, myself and I.
This year’s Winding Ways shop hop was organised for the month of June. The WHOLE month of June. (Last year it was the month of May.)And never have I been happier with the planning of one Mrs Martin, than I was this year. Between writing school reports and finalising the first semester, I had no time to do the shop hop any earlier.
Saturday morning started out early. After getting my oil checked at a local service station, and buying dog food, it was off up Mountain Highway to Mrs Martin’s Quilt Shop in Emerald. Anyone who has done much driving in the Dandenongs knows that Saturdays you are sharing the road with (kamikaze) cyclists thinking they are doing the Tour de France! Between cyclists, foggy conditions and drivers not using their headlights, I was still able to enjoy the Australian bush in all it’s glory!
I arrived at Mrs Martin’s at about 10am, and had a wonderful time visiting with Bronwyn while looking for that special something. As a teacher of high school textiles, we get our students to make a pincushion as their first project, and I am always looking for more gorgeous pincushion patterns to make one day to show the students. I came across 2 patterns at Mrs Martin’s, but alas, she had sold out of one of them! By the time I left Mrs Martin’s, I had some background fabrics, trims and the pattern for the ‘Little Bluebird Pincushion’ by Petals and Patches.
Next on my trip was Berwick, and Craft Haven. A simply gorgeous store, I ran in to my friend Carol there. I had not seen Carol in months! We spent ages talking, while I caught her up on my news. By the time I left, I had a new project bag for my Cabinet of Curiosities project and some gorgeous Tilda Fabrics. (whoops, just realised I have forgotten to photograph the project bag!)
So it was back to the car, after a quick stop for coffee at ‘A Touch of Dutch‘ in Berwick, where I put the details for the next store into my GPS. You would think that they would design the software for GPS’s to include all the data for quilt shops and needlework shops, saving you the task of trying to work out exactly where each one is!
I absolutely LOVE Pakenham’s Sewing Connection!!!! It is a large store located in the Post Office arcade in the centre of Pakenham. The staff there are so gorgeous, and I really wished that I had more time to stop and look. But I found what I wanted in no time at all! Here I bought Blackbird Design’s “A Stitcher’s Journey” and a sweet fat quarter bundle. Some lovely dusty pinks and mauves from the new Wildflower Wood collection by Lynette Anderson. I felt that these fabrics were perfect for the pincushions and needle books found in this book. And I may even have another Blackbird Design’s project or 2 that really need this fabric!
Then it was a relatively short hop over to Koo Wee Rup for a visit to Craft Quarters. They are currently located in a corner store just off the main street, but are planning to move soon to a new home in the main street, just a couple of doors up from the Subway store. Craft Quarters has an amazing range of Bali Prints, but at the moment, these do not really call to me, but I found the book Two From One Jelly Roll Quilts. After all, I do have a jelly roll or 2 lying around here! So thought this would be a good addition to my bookshelves. I also added to my sewing tin collection, with a sweet little (empty) chocolate tin. This would be a good place for me to store those extra packets of needles that I like to collect.
Then it was time to head to the final store. This was the first time I have been to visit Candleberry Country in Yarragon. One and half hours from my point of origin. I was not looking forward to the trip home. Yarragon is a cute little village on the highway just past Warragul. There are a number of cute shops just off the highway, and Candleberry Country is located within the Village Walk. I spent ages in there! For such a small shop, there is loads to see – including a fantastic range of Tilda fabrics and books! It was not easy to choose projects, but when I saw that she carried some of the Viv Creations designs, I had my fingers crossed! Remember that chart I mentioned not being able to get from Mrs Martin’s? I found it here!!!!! Of course I bought it! I also bought a couple of other designs that caught my eye – the Tilda Diary Cover and a Tool Tidy by Leesa Chandler Designs. I also added to my Tilda Fabric Collection.
I finished off my road trip with a bowl of lovely Pea and Ham Soup from one of the Yarragon cafes, Cocos of Yarragon, before jumping in the car and heading home, ready to enjoy studying my purchases, and wait for the call to hear that I had won one of the Shop Hop prizes. (Alas it was not to be…. Oh well, there is always next year!)