Sunday, March 29, 2020

Of Autumn and flowers and hexies.......and happy things

A lovely hello to all you lovely, lovelies♥ I hope you are all well and taking care during these days of internment in your sweet homes.  Here at the bottom of the world we are in lockdown mode. As the world agonises and groans  from the effects of coronavirus,   I am making the most of  'doing time' in my humble abode and garden.  The days have been pleasantly warm and the garden continues to gift me with sweet flowers. The light is slowly changing; the soft light and hues of autumn are a delight to my eyes. The dahlias are blooming beautifully and the pretty cosmos are just doing what they always do.....splash their colourful, sunshiny smile. One can never feel sad when one gazes upon the cheery cosmos.

This week I have been enjoying the garden, playing florists and stylists.....again, and whiling away my days taking happy snaps. Oh, and there has been the pleasure of stitching sweet hexies, too.  A few more sweet Liberty hexies have been added to the quilt. Sitting in my pretty sewing room, stitching these pretty hexies does indeed feed my soul. Yes, these sweet days at home are a shelter in the time of storm. There is no venturing out in the world, except for a drive here and there (staying in the car of course) or facing the grocery store, which I must say has been quite civil and orderly. Here in this small community we have escaped the frenzied shoppers climbing over each other to get that last toilet roll. Indeed we have escaped visits to the hospital where concussion caused from over zealous shoppers, is treated. Everyone here is behaving like proper grown ups.

I feel thankful for my home on this little island, in this small rural community; far, far from the madding crowd. Having lived in the city for fifty years of my life and since moving to Tassie, I must confess I do not miss the cacophonous jungle of Sydney at all. There is not a day  goes  by where I  do not feel thankfulness for my little home, the beautiful garden that my good husband dreamed into being, and for the pastoral surroundings that hug me every day.  It is peaceful here. It is beautiful here. Living in this little place I am able to block out the frenzied noise of the outside world. Here in this tranquil place, I can just......breathe.

I continually think of those whose livelihoods have been lost, whose lives have been turned upside down; so, so sad. It is sad to think that grandchildren cannot visit their grandparents.....indeed unable to hug one another and spend precious moments in each other's company. As a hugger, this is one thing I have felt very strange about not being able to do. One does wonder how long this situation will go on.

But, let us talk about happy things. Shall we look at what I have been playing with this week?? There are a few happy snaps, but, I thought perhaps you wouldn't mind. =)

I hope I have sprinkled smiles of  autumnal, flowery beauty to your day.  It is Sunday  here. A lovely sunny-ish day where the garden is bathed in a soft light. Later on I am going to find myself a comfy spot and delight in a little slow Sweet Sunday stitching. A walk in the garden will be a must to enjoy some moments of repose in a garden seat, carefully listening; to the soft breeze tickling the flowers, to the distant mountains, to the whispers of my Heavenly Father; and thinking upon you❧

I suppose down here at the bottom of the world where autumn is shimmering it's golden light upon me, and way up there where spring is smiling upon will be a little while till we can all play with our friends, embrace in a warm hug again;  and hold hands while we dosey doe, gleefully twirling and whirling around in a happy dance. Bless you lovely lovelies. Take care♥

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

Linking up to Kathy's, Slow Sunday Stitching.

Sunday, March 22, 2020

Home Sweet Homeđź’™

A lovely welcome to my little place♥ It is Sunday afternoon here, and as it seems is the rest of the world; I am spending it in my Home Sweet Home. Home, the very word makes me smile. A most wonderful place to be in these troubled times. Our homes are a safe place, a place of refuge, a sanctuary;  the place where one feels at rest. Sitting here in my humble abode, looking out at the serene, bucolic vignettes outside my picture windows, it's hard to believe the drama that is playing out on the world stage.

As I am a gal who loves her own company and am not really a social butterfly, I rather relish being home. Oh, I love people and I love the conversations and sharing beautiful visits with my friends, but if I have to stay home, then I will enjoy it and appreciate all those pleasurable pursuits that I adore; to while away my day. To be honest, boredom never takes residence here at my little place, nor indeed in me. Boredom and me have never been acquainted, really. There are so many everyday pastimes I take delight in. Though, I am sad that it is the bizarre state of the world that is causing me to stay close to home. I feel sadness for those whose lives have been turned upside down in so many ways by the events that have eventuated over the last month.

On a lighter note, my good husband and I were laughing the other day and decided that if we were never to venture out our front gate ever, ever again, he would happily stay in his garden with spade in hand and me in any number of the pretty rooms in our humble abode, with sewing needle in mine. =) 

It is late Sunday afternoon here. A glorious autumn day. Autumn has sprinkled my day with happy beams of sunshine. In the garden the hydrangeas' frocks have been sprinkled with muted autumnal hues; all so very different. Pretty, soft colours are beginning to peek through the layers of petals. Truly, for long flowering beauty through summer till late autumn, there is no more beautiful shrub than the heavenly hydrangeas; but that's just my very humble opinion 

I have enjoyed a little Sweet Sunday hand stitching today and intend to do a little more this evening. More hexies of my Sweet Sunday quilt have been stitched. It has been a lovely afternoon, playing with my sweet Liberty fabrics and embroidered linens. I suppose I should have waited longer to begin to stitch these pretty hexies together, but truth be told, I wanted to see them playing nicely together. And, play nicely together they certainly do. Love how all these sweet Liberty fabrics bring out the beauty of the sweet print it is sitting next to. But, Liberty prints always seem to do that, don't they.

I know not what tomorrow will bring; but then, we never know, do we. With each new day it seems there is a new development in all corners of the globe. I can only take one day at a time; the day that I have been given. I choose to see a little beauty in my every day. Difficult sometimes, but it is the essence of my being. I am a gal who loves God. I am a gal who has a simple but deep faith, trying to trust God each day. Does this faith mean that nothing ever bad happens to me?? Most certainly not. I have been a christian since I was fourteen years old. Through the years, the Lord and me have walked through many dark and disturbing times together. Why, more often than not my Heavenly Father has picked me up and carried me, because I could not walk another step. In these bizarre days where there is so much uncertainty  and worry of the unknown, I choose faith over fear. Today, I choose to appreciate the beauty of my little place and enjoy it. I choose to be thankful for the blessing of my Home Sweet Home.

It struck me this week that the virtual world we share, you and I need not experience social isolation in our homes. You and I can visit each other and see what we have been up to or how we are going; how we are travelling (not that we are travelling anywhere soon). We can build one another up, support each other, show random acts of kindness....encourage each other. Once again, this little place called blogland is the sweetest of blessings. May you, as you spend your days in your sweet home, find a little beauty. May you take care and keep well. Bless you, lovely lovelies♥

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

Linking this week to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching.

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Bohemian Purple Rhapsody

A lovely welcome to all you lovely lovelies♥ I was revisiting some of my posts this past week and found that I had never really chatted about a hexagon quilt which I designed and fashioned about ten years ago. Oh, this quilt has popped up in a few of my posts through the years and is pinned on Pinterest by someone every other day, but it has never been showcased up close and personal. It never has been the subject of it's own post and I think perhaps is worthy of being prattled on about (just a little) and enjoy a little showtime. =) "Which quilt??" I hear you ask. Why, it is my lusciously scrumptious, purple hexie quilt, which I named 'Bohemian Purple Rhapsody' many, many moons ago.

When we first landed in Tassie and settled into our humble abode, a local cafe owner visited us in our home; looked around the 'parlour' whilst she was sipping tea in a pretty teacup and asked me if I would like to set up a little shop in a room of her cafe, with the idea of flogging my pretties to the unsuspecting public. I thought why not, as I am always up for new adventures. So setting up my 'Sarah Lizzies Handmade' little shop, I did. Tourists from all over the globe crossed the threshold of my little room. Ladies that is, as their partners took one look at all the pretties and fled for their lives, perhaps fearing they would get entangled in all things textile. It is amazing how the look of fear comes into a man's eyes when he sees a room burgeoning with lace and fabric pretties. They truly do run for their lives! Many ladies purchased any number of my 'wares' to take home with many, many countries. I sold many handmade pretties; quilts, cushions, bags, dolls; whatever my muddly brain could conjure up. There was a lady who was a companion to a famous British actress of the stage who bought one of my little embellished, lavender hearts as a gift to this unnamed thespian. Apparently my little pretty hangs alongside coutured gowns, in a three story Victorian home sitting along the Thames. Whom....I don't really know as the older thespian's companion wouldn't divulge her name. The thought that others liked my pretties enough to take them home with them is always  humbling to me.

 As I sat each day in my little shop I was always working on some pretty or other. It is amazing the conversations I enjoyed with people as I stitched. I cannot tell you how many times ladies opened up their hearts and more often than not I would ask them if they would like a coffee. Over a cappuccino, stories spilled out of their mothers, aunts.....grandmothers who sewed, who loved lace, who collected buttons and so on. Why, some of the ladies would go home and post me their great grandmother's embroidery and lace collections, just because they knew I would fashion something from their exquisite pretties; I would give these treasures another life. Indeed, I look back at that period in my life as a wonderful experience. My little shop's existence lasted for a couple of years but then an opportunity arose for me to teach children the delights of all things stitching, so a new fun-filled door opened.

But about Bohemian Purple Rhapsody?? I started this quilt with the notion of using up my stash of vintage fabrics and many of the gorgeous french laces; my dowry of cloth that I had collected over the years. Five years previously I had designed a QAYG pastel hexie quilt brimming with vintage embroideries and laces and other such pretties. To my knowledge a QAYG hexie where each hexie danced with embroidered linens, lace and oodles of embellishments had never been imagined before. Indeed there are a lot of these hexie quilts in cyberspace these days but when I designed this type of quilt there was nothing of this ilke around. Why, a lady whose name is Rhonda Dort discovered my pastel pretty on Pinterest and  it sparked her imagination to create her amazing quilt which apparently took 2nd prize at the Houston Quilt Show. To this day every time I go into my blog my pastel pretty has been pinned. It always amazes me how people find a pretty that one has fashioned; inspiring them to perhaps make a similar quilt. 'Tis such a pity I didn't write THAT book all those years ago prattling on about my  QAYG embellished hexie pretties.......I could have perhaps retired.....that is of course if anyone bought the book. =)

BUT.....I digress......again. My 'little' quilt was imagined with the thought of  a rainbow of jewel-like fabrics all swirling and twirling around in an exotic, colourful, gypsy dance, falling wherever they will. I wanted to design and fashion a bohemian rhapsodic quilt. Every fabric is vintage....silks, velvets, flock velvets, Italian coverlets, Indian silk beaded saris, satins....all sumptuous and gorgeous. Then to spice it up even more, every lace was to be even more colourful and even more exotic. I tell you, I have a serious stash of exquisite French laces which I happened upon quite by accident, and for a proverbial song! The acquisition of these glorious laces is perhaps a story for another day.

I wanted this quilt to effuse enthusiasm and ecstatic expression of a bohemian aesthetic. Also, I wanted this quilt to be unconventional, breaking all the 'so-called' quilting rules of colour and design. I really didn't give a hoot about what goes with what or indeed what doesn't. I just wanted to splash colour onto colour; with the need to play. I wanted to pay homage to those crazy patchwork quilts of yesteryear, but with a modern twist. I wanted a lush, sumptuous quilt of blues, pinks, purples, browns, greens, reds, lavenders...even a touch of tangerines and burnished oranges. Bohemian Purple Rhapsody took me eight months of six hour days to stitch. Each stitch lovingly and slowly hand stitched. As I sat and stitched in my little shop, or on the verandah of the cafe, many people saw the gradual unfolding of my bohemian pretty.

I wanted ruched flowers, ribbon roses,  butterflies, trailing vines with pretty ribbon leaves, gloves, baskets and jardinierres overspilling with ribbon floral delight, beads, jewels, buttons, buckles, french laces kissing the border of each hexie. A scrumptious quilt embellished to an inch of it's life was what I desired. I just wanted more, more, more; because, well...........I am an over-the-top, more is never enough, kinda gal.

I look upon those days when I stitched in my little shop, with visitors all around the world entering my colourful and handmade little world and smile at those memories. I smile at the conversations we shared. I smile at how in a very small way I brought a little whimsy and perhaps sprinkled a touch of beauty to another's day. I smile when I think that something I imagined.......then fashioned, is in another's home in some other part of the world. I wonder if they remember that lady who was entangled in a muddly, colourful textile, lacey web. I hope so.

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

Linking up to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching.