Sunday, July 3, 2022

New Beginnings♡

Hello lovely lovelies♡ A Sunday morning hug to you♡ I hope this week has been kind to you♡ My week?? It passed  quickly....again. Another month blew by and another is just settling in for a while. July. Cosy sleep ins, and with quilts wrapped around me enjoying morning cuppas, joying in the misty mornings unveiling as the dawn breaks. Those winter mornings of mist-cloaked landscapes are a delight to the senses. I am reminded that winter days are filled with loveliness, even if they do chill my bones. Though, with misty, winter mornings aside, I do hope winter gets a hurry on.

This week?? After the previous two weeks of being completely absorbed with the border of Skipping Around The Garden Path, I longed for a more relaxed week. And relaxed it was; well mostly. It was a week where I happily chatted with my daughter who lives in San Fransisco, on my computer, no less. Thank goodness for modern technology. It has been so important these last four years to keep up to speed with my daughters, seeing them and chatting if only through a virtual screen. Counting down the days I will be able to hug my daughters in person, in one of those never-let-go-hugs, but I will chat about that another time.

It was a week where there were sad conversations with friends who are wading through very deep waters; where one or two of God's miracles would not be amiss. Life......the happy times filled with simplicity and joy......the complex times filled with struggles and sadness. As I always say sadness and happiness.....joys; are forever constant companions.

It was a week where there were new beginnings. New beginnings of designing and stitching new pretties. With my Skipping Around The Garden Path neatly folded and put aside in readiness for quilting, and the hand quilting of Hydrangea Cobblestones slowly inching along, some new pretties were imagined. A new beginning of a bag, just because I need a new one (not) and a small quilt which will be a table topper. When I say I don't need a new bag, well I kinda do. I am in need of a blue and green one. =) I am that gal who loves the choice of a a variety of  bags, co-ordinating with different outfits. No black or brown bag, which goes with everything for me. Besides, as I have all the pretties here in my humble abode needed to make a bag, it doesn't seem extravagant. I am lessening my supplies, one little bag at a time. Though, I fear I would have to fashion hundreds of bags to  make a dent in my Aladdin's cave of pretties. Oh okay, truth be told, I just wanted to play with all my pretty fripperies; again.

You know the story; the making of my bags' story, for you have read it ad nauseum when you visit my little place. Once again I played with vintage coverlets, old tapestries,  pretty laces, doilies, french ribbons, tiny crochet flowers snipped from snippets of doilies. My fingers playing with pretty ribbons, curling and twirling, folding and coaxing into an eye pleasing arrangement. With my fingers  slowly stitching all the pretties, enjoying my days, thinking upon my family, my friends, the books I have finished reading etc etc....and at times nothing much at all, really. It's amazing how at times my head can be filled with nothingness. 

For this bag I chose a sweet tapestry of a little cottage being hugged by blossom trees; nestled behind a hedge of a garden of green, floral lace which once served as a blouse;  with an assortment of flowers dotted here and there. The ubiquitous ribbon, too, threaded through a buckle, weaving its way around the tapestry; framing it. Throughout this week, sitting in my sewing room bathed in sunshine; has been so calming, so soothing.

The beginnings of a new quilt was enjoyed as well. A quilt which will be a table topper though of course it could grow exponentially. A few years ago I purchased a couple of  Moda charm squares and a jelly roll with the name Cheeky. Pretty fabrics in pinks, reds, greens, blues and yellows with patterns depicting flowers and spots throughout.

I finished the book The Dressmakers of Auschwitz. A deeply moving and powerful account of a group of women who survived by sewing in Auschwitz. I have read numerous books  about the Holocaust but this one opened my eyes even more. With each new graphic account I am even more horrified of the evil which humans (I use the term 'human' very loosely) perpetuated. Another book I read is written by Philip Yancey. Where The Light Falls is a moving memoir of his sad and tragic childhood and teen years in a fundamentalist, conservative church in the south of America during the 1950's and 60's. Oh my goodness, some of the  unbending ideologies that were purported are unbelievable. When I read of his accounts and memories I wonder as to how he grew up to be the free thinking  man of grace he is today. A fascinating and gripping memoir with not only sad and tragic reflections but pages punctuated with his humour. His droll sense of humour tickled my funny bone. I have read a few of his books and much of what he has to say about Christian truths resonates with me. I read it in a day and couldn't go to bed until I read the last written word.  It was  in the wee hours of the morning when I finally switched off the light. I am still reading and enjoying Home Sweet Home. I pick up this beautiful book randomly, joying in each page, each lovely photo and the lyrical words. This book is not one to be rushed but is meant to be savored and appreciated at a snail's pace.

A recent op shop find. A sweet, little, glass jug♡ Of course it had to come home with me. Love the little swan swimming across the jug♡ I am dreaming of the days when I can replace the pretty fripperies with a lovely bunch of spring-filled bluebells♡

Thank you for gracing my day with your beautiful visit♡ It is another sun-drenched day where later on I will find a sunny nook and let the sunbeams work their magic. A little nook to enjoy a little reading as I have a growing pile of books to whittle down. A little sunny nook to sit and ruche a length of ribbon into a flower, and coerce some french wired ribbon into leaves. These will adorn the flap of the bag. Perhaps this evening I will enjoy more hand quilting of Hydrangea Cobblestones, too. The needle slowly inching it's way along the path of the fluttering butterflies. Some gentle, meditative hand quilting. Doesn't that sound like just the thing for a relaxing Sunday?? Bye for now. This week the aim is to finish the bag. May your week be blessed with touches of love and kindness; and sprinkles of beauty♡ Have a lovely day, lovely lovelies♡

Until the next time.............

FrédériqueLinking up this week to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching
and Frédérique's, Quilting, Patching Applique

Sunday, June 26, 2022

By Jove, I Think I've Got It!!

Yes I have! I do believe I've got it!! Hello lovely lovelies♡ I have figured out the pentagon border dancing around the quilt! I know; a-m-a-z-i-n-g!! Well, I think it is, as believe you me, I am that gal whose brain shuts down at the very thought of trying to resolve anything to do with maths. And, the very thought of trying to figure out an equally distanced, curved pattern of continuous pentagons in an eye pleasing arrangement around a quilt, is quite frankly beyond me.......or so I thought. All the stars aligned! No complex multiplication. No puzzling division (remember long divison....yukkity yuk). Indeed, no addition nor subtraction entered into the equation. Just guesstimating, some good old fashioned measuring, and a little playing with groups of  pentagons until I came up with a number that would fit perfectly; kinda like my kindergarten, block building days. =) 

My brother was always the maths genius of my family. Goodness he was clever (and still is). He could in his head, multiply a four digit number by another four digit number, calculating the correct answer in less than 5 seconds. He repeatedly tried to explain his methods to me, but unfortunately my brain screamed "no comprendo"! The maths gene bypassed me. I suppose I should've paid more attention throughout high school and not be chatting and giggling with my friends at the back of the room. We four girls always fought for who would take the dubious honour of being last in our maths tests. Sadly, if I remember correctly it seemed, more often than not, to be me. Maths and me.......just a no go. Maths just always seemed completely foreign to me.

First things first. These last two weeks I hand pieced little pentagons together into sets of seven. I was going to join six pentagons together as per the wedges in the rings but didn't like the look of this so I tried seven pentagons in each section. In this instance I think odd numbers creates visual interest; but then odd numbers in assemblages and groupings  always work; it always seems to be calming to my eyes. Seven.....the perfect number! Then I worked out how many sets of pentagons it would take to fit across the quilt by placing each set next to another in a continuous row. With an approximate number I then played around with measurements to get an inkling of the distance of the pentagons from the body of the quilt. As the quilt is a square I elucidated this should be easy-ish as all sides measure the same. Elementary dear Kim; this much I remember from my geometry days. Sometimes the obvious is oblivious to me. So, so happy this quilt is not a rectangle!

To be perfectly honest I have no idea how I happened upon the correct measurement. I just kept experimenting with my ruler in hand, fiddling with the pentagons until I stumbled upon 'the distance' of the pentagons from the seam joining the body of the quilt to the border fabric; both the top and bottom; and the sides. With my ruler, I then drew four straight lines around the quilt. I then lined up the top of the 1st and 7th pentagon to the line, forming a curve; continuing this process all the way round. Another measurement was made from the drawn line to the top of the 4th (the middle) pentagon ensuring all the pentagons were in line. I know, I know, clear as mud!! =) When it came to the corners there are 14 pentagons joined together forming a wider curve. This will look fabulous when it comes to finishing the quilt and I create a scalloped edging. Surprisingly the whole process didn't take very long at all. I am agog that the process wasn't more bothersome and that the little pentagons behaved. 

So, so delighted with my Skipping Around the Garden Path quilt top. Love the scrappylicious pentagons. I love how the scalloped pentagons dancing around the border turned out. Still can't quite believe it, though. =) Now for the quilting. Not quite sure how I will quilt it. I have a few thoughts but for now I will set it aside and consider what would look fabulous. For now, I will continue quilting my Hydrangea Cobblestones quilt which is what I will be working on later this evening. 

The Winter Solstice blasted by this week and now we are on the up and up moving ever so slowly towards days that are a little bit longer with each new day. The bulbs are beginning to pop up from the freezing earth causing me to dream of a far off spring. Just dreams, as thinking that spring will come once again when I am being engulfed by blustery, wintry days can sometimes be a bit of a stretch. Today, is one of those blustery and chilly days.  Spring; such a lovely word. I know it will come; for it is written in the bulbs. =) 

Thank you for stopping by lovely lovelies♡ As always you have sprinkled sunshine into my wintry day, indeed blessing me with your sweet visit♡ May this coming week bless you and be kind to you. I fear this world is becoming less kind with each new day. I'm off to make a cup of tea and drown my sorrows, for I am feeling sad....and a little weary today. I weary of the supercilious zealots who look through the lens which are always black and white. Alas, the lens I look through have always been somewhat smudged; tinted with many varying shades of grey. I suppose, "never the twain shall meet". So, so  many ponderous thoughts swirling around and around my flummoxed head.

Anyway, I must be off as the kettle is whistling a steaming song and I feel in the mood for a ginger biscuit, or two; enjoying the warmth of the family room with sunbeams warming both my body and soul♡ Sunbeams, dancing across a room....makes for a not so fabulous happy snap, but oh, how they cheer my  heart♡

 I do hope your day is a lovely one ♡

Until the next time..................

Linking this week to Kathy's, Slow Sunday Stitching,  

Frédérique's, Quilting, Patchwork, Applique

 Cynthia at Oh Scrap

Sunday, June 12, 2022

Skipping Around The Garden Path, Again♡

Hello lovely lovelies♡ Welcome to my little place, this very chilly Sunday. It was a blue-sky day, where outside the winds were a-blowing all day, but inside the sun's rays sprinkled warmth and cheeriness wherever they touched. It was one of those washing-flapping-in-the-wind, kinda days. Freezing outside but warm as toast inside.

This week I laid my pretty Tilda Chic Escape fabrics aside for a little while and picked up my Skipping Around The Garden Path quilt. The last time I chatted about this pretty I had finished all the blocks; the days were warm, the cosmos were sashaying and the dahlias were putting on a glorious show. This week I stitched all the blocks together. There were a few sunny days where  my sewing room was awash with warm sunshine, where I cosied down for many an hour soaking up all the cheery rays. It took a little while as I had to make certain the squares met exactly. When I handstitched all the wedges together, I didn't actually sew down the sides of each of the intersecting squares because when I eventually joined these together, if indeed these didn't meet perfectly, I would manipulate each one so they did. I hope to hand stitch these down later this evening (though I fear I have run out of time) when I join the other slow stitching lovelies at Kathy's place. 

I want to add a border around the outside, so I have a thought of hand stitching pentagons in a continuous arrangement skipping all the way around the edge. These pentagons will be stitched onto lengths of the slate grey fabric. I have no idea if this will work, but I will certainly give it a whirl. As I am a mathematically challenged gal I am going to make it up as I go along. Just playing yet again. So, I have covered many more pentagon EPP shapes and have begun to stitch these together in groups of six. I thought too, that this quilt would look fabulous with a scalloped edging all the way around, but of course this is jumping the gun, just a little. =) 

Now to see if what is in my muddly head can translate to lots of happy pentagons filled with scrappy loveliness, skipping around the border of the quilt. Another good-in-theory, lame brain notion perhaps?? But.....if it pans out in the end, then I will be doing a happy dance. =) If perchance it goes belly up, then at least I will have oodles of scrappy pentagons in readiness for another pretty sometime down my hand stitching path.

Hoping you enjoy a lovely week, lovely lovelies♡ Thank you for gifting my day with your lovely visit♡ May you find small joys in the ordinary of the everyday♡ See you next week........perhaps. =)

Until the next time..................