Sunday, June 23, 2019

Colour My Winter


A lovely Sunday morning welcome to all you lovely lovelies♥

Of late when Old Man Sun has been hiding behind grey threatening clouds, I have been colouring  my wintry days; embellishing many moments with splashes of beauty, pretty colour and smiles. Yes indeedy, I have been playing with pretty ribbons, lush velvets, ribbon flowers, french laces........all for pretties that I want to fashion further down my rambling path. I am thinking I am in need of a new bag.....or two. Also, I haven't fashioned a cushion flourishing with floralicious delight for a very long while. As my ribbon flowers are as scarce as those real 'breathe-in-the-golden-sunshine-so-that-photosynthesis-can-occur', type flowers; I thought I should perhaps twirl and whirl  ribbons around and around, coaxing them this way and that way until  blooming beauties appear. I like to have a smattering of ribbon flowers on hand in readiness for a cushion, or indeed some other pretty that is in need of a ribbon flower.

Here are pretties for a new bag. I know......a tad flashy, but then I am not a plebeian, one-bag-suits-all-occasions, kinda gal. I love to step out and about with a bag overspilling with embellished gorgeousness. Do you know, I really cannot remember when last I purchased a carryall. I have been fashioning one-of-a-kind Kim Sharman bags for years now.



Upon crossing the threshold of a most glorious fabric establishment on Fashion Avenue in the Garment District of downtown New York, (I was blessed to visit this most amazing city last year) a velvet fabric gushing with gorgeous detail caused me to stop dead in my tracks. To tell the truth, many...... oh all right, every bolt of fabric made me stop so that I may linger over each one, drinking in all the exquisite details. The forest green velvet  oozing with beads and jewels and pops of turquoise and black patterned velvet is stunning. I must say at this juncture, I am a little pea green with envy with you lovelies who live in New York or indeed, are only a short air flight away. Seriously, I thought I had stumbled upon the pearly gates of fashion heaven when I strolled down Fashion Avenue, where shop after shop wooed and cajoled and enticed me. With the quote of  that luminary character, Oscar Wilde, in mind....."The only way to get rid of temptation is to yield to it.......I can resist everything but temptation", I succumbed and walked out the rather posh doors with this sumptuous velvet and a few more in hand, but the other pretties are for another post.

Ahh......New York!! How I love thee so!! This book toppled from the shelf of a book store the other day, so I had to, had to take it home with me.

The author and photographer of this breathtaking book is Georgianna Lane. Georgianna's sublime photos and gloriously lyrical words which dance off the page has caused me to pick this book up over and over again, drooling over every page. Page after page of gorgeousness spills over with the floral beauty of NYC in the springtime, interspersing throughout with photos of the exquisite botanical details found in the city's iconic architecture. If ever I should visit this magical and exhilarating city again I must do so when Central Park and the surrounding metropolis are buzzing with the beauty that only Spring can bring. To see the "hundreds of thousands of bulbs donated annually and planted by residents and volunteers for the Daffodil project, as a living memorial to those lost on September  11", in the New York Botanical Gardens, would be a show stopping and poignant experience; or indeed, to walk along paths lined with flowering magnolias, crabapple and cherry trees, all blooming profusely would make my heart skip a beat or two. Then, to drink in the hundreds and hundreds of roses in the Peggy Rockefeller Rose Garden, where arbors and trellises peep from behind  the climbing roses, would be an explosion of all the senses. Indeed, a walk through this utopia would be a perfumed paradise. Between the covers of this beautiful book there are so, so many glorious flowery experiences to be wowed by, during springtime in New York City. If you were to ask me, Georgianna's beautiful book New York in Bloom is a must-have-addition to your library. Georgianna has published several other 'eye candy' books. Paris in Bloom is on my to buy list and when her book London in Bloom is published, this too  will be finding it's way onto my coffee table.


But I digress yet again, let's get back to those fabrics.

There have been a few days where there has been no illumination by the sun, hence the need to play  with pretty, french-wired ribbons, hand stitching them with a stitch here and there to form flowers, hence cheering up a gloomy soul on a dark and sinister winter's day.


As well as playing with pretty fabrics and sumptuous velvets, I have continued with a little hand quilting of my pretty basket quilt. Four rows have now been completed. Three more rows to be quilted and then the border. Not long to go now.......famous last words!! Love, love, love all that quilty texture!


Once again, on those sunshine-filled days  I have found a sunny spot and quilted. A little hand quilting in a sunny corner is a most enjoyable way to spend a couple of hours.


Truly, scrappy quilt upon scrappy quilt is a vision splendid!

It is Sunday morning here and I am enjoying a cup of tea in a pretty new teacup. My beautiful friend, Trish, (Holly's mum) gifted me this gorgeous china pretty as a thank you. Isn't it beautiful?? Why, it matches my hydrangea teapot. I wonder......how did my beautiful friend know that hydrangeas are my all time favourite flower. I truly have no idea. =) Oh, by the way, I always take tea in a teapot with both cup and saucer and teapot resting on a tray........don't you?? No?? Me thinks if one partook in a little tea ceremony each day, where one pours tea from a pretty hydrangea teapot into a pretty hydrangea tea cup, with both pretties resting on a sweet tray, well......the world would be a much happier place. Those ego-maniacal leaders who stomp their feet and shake their fists in a tanty, with murmurings of war and other such deeds of chicanery should sit down, take a chill pill and pour themselves a cup of calming tea in a pretty teacup; relax and think upon  all things peace to mankind. After all, is not a cup of tea the panacea for all ills. =)


Before I am up and at it, I might just linger in my comfy bed for a little while longer, luxuriating with my cup of Melbourne Breakfast tea and flowery book as the sunshine slowly creeps over my quilt, engulfing me with its happy beams. Sundays......a most wonderful day of the week, at least it is for me. Love, love, love lazy Sundays. Off to church, perhaps lunch with friends then this afternoon most definitely a spot of book reading and a little hand quilting. More pretty baskets and buds to be quilted. There is sunshine in my soul today ♥ As always thank you, lovely lovelies, for visiting my sunshiny little place♥


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

Sharing this week at Kathy's, Slow Sunday Stitching

Saturday, June 8, 2019

WINTER!!

Winter! The very word chills my bones. Way down here at the bottom of the world, where it is just a hop, skip and a jump over melting sheets of ice to Antarctica, Old Man Winter, that blustery, ill-mannered chap has brazenly blown in. Yep.....he has arrived. He has swirled and swirled wherever he will, tempestuously dispensing his frigid tricks from that over-large bag of his, onto us mere mortals........and Maisie, too♥

I wish I loved Winter. I know there are some of you lovelies who invite Old Man Winter into your homes with outstretched arms and embrace him, chastising him for being away so long.....but I do not. There are some of you who don your snowshoes, your skis; and trudge through snow up to your chin for mile after mile and have the best time, embracing whatever Old Man Winter heaps upon you. Why, I would believe there are some of you who would lay supine, on that white stuff  as it slowly thaws and turns into slush; looking at the crystal blue sky above with a smile on your face.

What can I say?? I am a gal who as a newborn bairn was delivered by the stork right smack in the middle of a Sydney Summer, where perspiration dripped from those who, as they gathered to ooh and aah over my sweet tiny self, they then collapsed onto the floor fainting with heat stroke. As for me, I would not have been perturbed one iota. I would've just gurgled and cooed at everybody, happy to feel the strength-sapping heat of Summer hugging me. Wish oh wish I could be as enamoured with wintertime as you......but I quite simply cannot. As Old Man Winter steals his way into my humble abode, squeezing under the door, I love to crank up the fire and see every little corpuscle of his cantankerous self melt away into oblivion.

Oh, I know Old Man Winter paints the landscape in the most beautiful of suffused colours at wintertime; and though the sky blesses me with sunrises which are more beautiful than summery ones, and the kaleidoscope of bejewelled colours which magically appear as the sun shines on the ice-sheathed earth is a spectacle one would never witness in summertime......it's just that.......it's so darn cold. "But you can rug up", I hear you say. Yeah I can, but it wouldn't matter if I walked out of my bright pink, front door clad in apparel that an Eskimo would wear, I still feel Old Man Winter's icy touch.

I have never liked the cold. It's a family thing. I seem to have DNA which has deemed  that I would always shiver.....just a little. My mum was the same, as was my nanna......so I guess what will be, will be. I will just have to suck it up for another three to four months; don my thick aran knits, throw another log or two onto the fire and follow Old Man Sun's sunbeams around my humble abode, as they shine through the windows.

Freezing temperatures aside the tracery of  naked branches plonked in a glass jar or an old tin bucket, with the background of a ramshackle potting shed, or the sky behind them is always a beautiful wintry sight. I do believe tortured willows are one of my very favourite trees, especially in the wintertime.





What has little ol' shivering me been up to since you lovely lovelies last visited?? Why, during the day, I have been following the sunbeams from room to room as I bask in the warm beams of happiness. Yes indeedy, with my quilting needle and thread....and my Buds in The Basket quilt in hand, I have plonked my gluteous maximus...my derriere on many a sunny chair, enjoying a little hand quilting. Sunshine is one of life's pleasures is it not?? Sitting in a comfy chair, slowly stitching away is truly one of the delights of my days. In the evenings too, I have been snuggling under this pretty, keeping warm, happily quilting whilst watching TV. Aah.....the good life!


I am loving hand quilting this quilt. As I meander upwards in a diagonal line.....down......and then up again, sometimes with wonky dashes wandering off that 'straight and narrow' path, the hand quilting relaxes me; calms me. I seem to get in a groove. I find beauty in the slow, imperfect stitches. Mmm...I wonder if I will ever get the hang of stitching perfectly spaced, perfect stitches of even length?? I find hand quilting tactile. I love the squishy squashy-ness, wrinkled feel and look of hand quilting.  Hand quilted quilts I find, are soft to the touch.

As well as line after line after line of diagonal quilting, I am stitching a basket weave pattern in the baskets and quilting around the buds....all rather meditative.

This last little while 'My Pete' and I celebrated another year of wedded bliss. He and me have been skipping hand in hand along the flower-lined, bendy path for 41 years! AND...some said our happy union wouldn't last....hey, what do they know. Our daughter sent this sweet tea towel and oh, how it makes me smile. I wonder......if ever he will?? As yet.....he has not. =)

Anyway......thank you lovely lovelies for visiting my little wintry world♥ As always the thought that you have visited me and read my musings has delighted my heart once again. May you who live way, way up there enjoy your summery warm, sunshine-filled days and I way, way down here will remember that there is much beauty to be seen and to savor in my wintry days. I will do my darndest to keep warm. So very thankful for toasty, cosy fires, knitted aran woollies, pretty cups steaming with hot ambrosial tea and warm quilts that cover me as I slowly hand quilt. As it is Sunday tomorrow, I feel a little snuggling down with some hand quilting will be enjoyed in the afternoon and into the evening.

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



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

Friday, May 24, 2019

'Tis time to quilt



A lovely hello to all you lovely lovelies♥


My husband gifted me this sweet lady pot for Mother's Day. And......how lovely she looks with her hydrangea hat. =)



Why, I wouldn't mind sporting a confection of a hydrangea hat, myself.


Besides having fun with fabulous pots and fancy hydrangea hats, I have been stitching my Buds in A Basket quilt. All my baskets overspilling with tiny little buds and leaves are finished and have been stitched in rows of delight. I must say, seeing them all assembled together sitting ever so nicely beside each other does make me smile. (I smile a lot don't I.) Well.....when you think about it, there are so many joyful, every day things that can make us smile.





But what to border these baskets with?? A lot of dithering has been happening here this past week over the question of borders. Do I go with the scrappy borders as so beautifully presented in the book, or do I use just one fabric??

I always love a smattering of scrappy fabrics dancing around the border of a quilt, but the last couple of quilts I have fashioned have scrappy borders. I wanted a different look this time.  Besides, I have only just tidied up the 'helluva' mess that I created with the pulling out what seems every fabric from my armoire, to fashion all the little circle flowers, leaves, baskets and handles. You would not believe the mess I make when I fashion a scrappy quilt. A textile bomb always looks as if it has been detonated with an explosion of bits of fabric everywhere. I wonder.....are you the same??

So, if I don't have a scrappy border what fabric would I use. I really didn't want to acquire more fabric for the border; I wanted to use a fabric I already had.

About a year ago I happened upon this  fabric. It made my heart aflutter at first sight. I have used it in other pretties I have fashioned and I had just enough for a border, with a little to spare for the binding later on. Love, love, love all the tiny little flowers and I love that every colour is represented. This fabric has a plethora of flowers blooming all over it; roses, delphiniums, forget-me-nots, daisies.......so, so many pretty blooms. I also love that the background colour is pink and not white. The busyness of the pattern  is so very me, but would it look spiffy skirting my pretty baskets. Admittedly it certainly packs a colourful punch, but I rather love how it makes my pretty baskets of sweet buds pop. I am a little sad that this is the last of the fabric but it is always a most excellent thing to use up what's in one stash......is it not??


I love how each blossom and leaf is outlined in black. It brings to mind a fabric I might have seen in the sixties. It also evokes a Liberty feel.





So, now 'tis time to quilt. I chose a white homespun for the  backing. For a girl who loves busy, busy, busy a plain backing is a stretch for me. I didn't have anything suitable in my fabric collection and I didn't want to spend time or money piecing together a smattering of fabrics. Plain ol' Jane, I'm afraid. Though, in saying this I do consider white will be a good fit for this quilt. As to the quilting design, I am following the ideas for quilting as suggested in the book; mostly diagonal stitching, quilting around the appliques and basket weave quilting in the baskets.....easy as.

So, the next little while I will enjoy hand quilting. As this quilt is queen size, I will be fashioning other pretties whilst I am slowly quilting. AND.....there is a small matter of my applique garden quilt to be seen to. I have not picked this pretty up for a month or so. Stitching variety is the spice of my life. Juggling oodles of pretties at any given time is what makes my life beautiful.

I am linking up to Kathy's, Slow Sunday Stitching when Sunday comes aknocking at my door, as that crystal ball of mine reveals me enjoying a little hand quilting  this Sunday evening. Actually, I think I will snuggle down most evenings in the coming week and enjoy a little hand quilting whilst watching a little TV.

Thank you for your sweet visit. It is a chilly and rainy Friday evening down here at the bottom of the world, so I am off to  enjoy a little hand quilting. May all you lovely lovelies enjoy a beautiful weekend♥

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