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. 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,, 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 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............

Monday, May 13, 2019

A Mother's Day Gift

A lovely welcome to all you lovely, lovelies♥ This Sunday past we celebrated Mother's Day. Those of you whom celebrated, I hope you all enjoyed a beautiful day surrounded by the laughter and joy of your loved ones; those loved ones with whom you have surrounded with boundless love, all these years. For me, I had a beautiful day with my husband, driving over this glorious countryside punctuated by stops at cafes and browsing markets. These days Mother's Day is always bittersweet as both my girls live thousands of miles away. But not to wonderful husband went all out to see that I had a fabulous day....and I did.

But the subject of this post is not about my wonderful Mother's Day but a beautiful quilt which was fashioned by one of my sewing girls, for her mum. Holly, has been skipping along the flower-lined front path and opening the bright pink front door of the 'The Kim Sharman School of Stitching Excellence', one afternoon every week since she was eight years old. Holly is now fifteen! Yes indeedy, Holly has been twirling and whirling all things textile for seven years. I have written about the cleverness of Holly many times before but my favourite post regarding her fabulous stitching talent was written here.  It was an impossibly sad time. Holly's beloved dad had just passed away tragically; much, much too soon. Holly was just a month shy of her thirteenth birthday. Though I wrote about Holly's wall hanging two and a half years ago, I am amazed at how, in such a short amount of time she has grown up, and blossoming into a delightful young lady.

That is the thing with 'kids' they just keep growing up, don't they; quicker than quick. How does that happen?? One minute they are so small that when they sit at the sewing machine they have to steady their feet on boxes so their short legs can reach the sewing machine foot. They have chubby little fingers, hair in pig tails, percolating with infectious giggles and fun. And then, as if overnight they are tall, confident young people ready to claim their place in the world, making it a better place. From the very beginning Holly displayed a talent for all things stitching. It truly has been one of the delights of my life to watch Holly  grow from a cheeky little girl to a gorgeous teenager who is funny, (she has the best sense of humour with a quick wit and so very droll) smart,, so many awesome attributes. Truly, Holly is a joy!

Aww.......look how sweet and may I say, little she is!

But........let's chat about Holly's quilt she lovingly designed and stitched for her mum. In February Holly decided to fashion her mum a quilt for her bed. I had bought a couple of  charm packs and a jelly roll in the Sweet Pea and Lily range. This range dances with lovely pattern in a colour range of pinks, purples, greys and greens. As Holly's mum's favourite colour is purple these fabrics seemed to be a match made in heaven.

Holly stitched  four patch squares and bordered each larger square with strips of the jelly roll. In between each block she added a grey and white polka dot fabric for the sashing. We thought a border of strips of the different fabrics would be perfect dancing it's way around the edge. The addition of the grey and white dots really make the blocks pop giving it a modern aesthetic. I found a larger grey and white polka dot for the backing and yet another different grey and white smaller polka dot for the binding.

Holly has been piecing and stitching this pretty since February, with the last stitch on the binding being stitched just last week. As for the quilting I thought it would be fabulous if  it was  professionally quilted. I must say the flowing floral quilting really makes the quilt sing.

There is always a sense of joy and accomplishment when I see a young person start a pretty and work on it week after week till all their patience and determination results in a most beautiful finish. Holly excelled herself this time; but then she seems to excel with every pretty she fashions. With each little stitch she fashioned a quilt of beauty, threading love, and thankfulness, and gratitude to her beautiful and amazing mum. I suppose Holly will one day decide that she wants to pursue other activities on a Wednesday afternoon and will stop skipping along the path that leads to The Kim Sharman School of Stitching Excellence. But that's okay, as it is the rhythm of life. For now though, I will just enjoy guiding this delightful young lady in all things stitching for a little longer. I will enjoy hanging out with her for a couple of hours each Wednesday afternoon, being entertained by her funniness, her keen intellect and her witty insights of her day. Holly truly puts a smile in my Wednesday afternoons.

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

Saturday, May 4, 2019

A little bit of everything and not much at all, really

A lovely welcome to my little autumnal place♥

What have I been up to this last little while?? I suppose a little bit of everything.....and not much at all, really. Oh, I have been busier than a bee, but it's just that I don't have a lot to show for all my busy-ness.

Autumn is casting it's beauty all around the place. The countryside is decorated with trees showing off their autumnal hues. Everywhere is cloaked in the gorgeousness that only Autumn can conjure up. It is as if almost overnight the trees have decided to put on their show. Before too long gust force winds that visit often these days, will strip the branches of the leaves causing them to rain down upon the ground forming a mosaic carpet underfoot. The scrunching of the leaves under one's feet is truly a magical sensation.

The Cosmos and Dahlias too, have been delighting us with more pretty colour. I suppose they must disappear sometime soon, but for now I will eke out every last bit of enjoyment, whilst I can. How pretty the flowers look with french ribbons coquettishly dancing around them whilst resting upon a bed of crisp autumnal leaves. Truly, my heart smiles....yet again♥

There has been a little building happening here, too. My husband has desired a fernery for those plants that need a little warmth and nurturing in the cooler months. For years now he has been squirrelling away windows and wood for such a project as this. He tells me he has been having the best fun.....making it up as he goes along. I call it 'Pete's Folly'.  As a gal who has always hankered after one of those conservatories that grace  Victorian and Edwardian buildings of old, this will be my own little glass sun catcher. A humble one, yes, but nevertheless a little greenhouse showcasing mismatched windows and whimsy. I am loving the progress of this little building. I am loving the mismatched windows, the peeling and cracked paint; the higgledy piggledy nature of this folly. Me thinks it might not only be used for warming up plants' toes and protecting them from Jack Frost, but it would be an excellent place in which to enjoy many an afternoon tea party.  A small afternoon tea gathering mind you, as let me make it clear this folly is a simple one. It is going to have windows all the way around so as to catch the views; the veggie patch, the garden and the paddocks and mountains in the distance.  'Tis very early days watch this space!! I cannot wait to see it finished. In my mind's eye I am styling it already. I have mentioned to my Pete that his folly is going to be the most excellent of props. =) Of course he just did what he always does when the subject of props and styling is chatted about......he just smiled.

The Hydrangeas have been fading to shades of blue green, crimson, magenta....all in different stages of fading for their autumnal display. I love how Hydrangeas fade for months on end during the Autumn and Winter seasons.

Yes indeedy, Pete's Folly is an excellent location for a photo shoot or two. What say you??

I have been enjoying a little applique this last little while, as well. I have appliqued most of the baskets of my Buds in the Basket quilt. So I suppose with small moments of daily stitching there has been an accumulation of a lot of stitching, really.  I fashioned oodles of leaves and circle buds to be appliqued onto the baskets.

There are only three baskets to applique now and then I can join them all together. As it is Sunday tomorrow I will enjoy a little happy hand stitching, perhaps in the afternoon. I am still dithering how to border the baskets. I suppose a border of puddles of scrappy fabrics would be the way to go, but I am thinking I might just use one fabric with flowers blooming all over. Cutting  oodles and oodles of scrappy fabrics and then stitching them together is not something I really want to do, as the last couple of weeks I have been cutting and stitching tiny scraps of fabrics together on a project for one of my stitching girls. Besides, I have used a border of scrappy fabrics previously for two of my quilts and this time I might mix it up a bit.......decisions, decisions?

Anyway........'tis delightful to have you visit my little autumnal place. I hope you are all enjoying a most beautiful weekend. Sending all you lovelies a little love, swirling around and around on the wings of those blustery, autumnal winds.♥

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

Linking up to Kathy's, Slow Sunday Stitching.