Hello lovely lovelies❣ These last few weeks have been ones where I have been "itching to be stitching". It has been an interesting couple of weeks where I have found myself sitting in my sunshine-filled family room, more than I normally would, with embroidered thread and needle in hand, happily stitching details to my flower garden quilt. More wintry weeks done and dusted, which means inching closer to that happiest of seasons.....Spring, Spring, Spring....♪♩♫❣ The garden is beginning to reveal the slightest of notions that beneath the garden beds, the magic of nature is beginning to.....begin the begin. Aah yes.....the daffodils, the bluebells, the irises, so many other early spring bulbs are beginning to pop up out of the cold earth and in a couple of weeks there will be a sea of the happiest of yellows and blues everywhere. Can you tell I am just a wee bit excited????
The environs of the family room has seemed like my home for the past twelve days, as I have been keeping an eye on my Maisie who is recuperating after a nasty accident. Maisie decided to jump over a fence to investigate a new born calf who had found itself in our garden, and in the process ripped her belly open, thus resulting in many stitches. She has been a very sad pup. How do you keep a stitched up springer spaniel from springing through her day???? She would much prefer to be chasing ducks across the paddocks or sniffing out critters in the garden, than being confined inside. I tell you, the first few days it was knee high impossible, but now she is remarkably happy and content...and very sweet. Oh, and there is the problem of the plastic 'cone of shame', the 'Elizabethan collar'. Sweet Maisie wasn't having a bar of it, so to keep her from doing more injury to herself I have wrapped a towel around her neck, rather like a thick scarf, so she won't lick her sutures to death and rip them out. Not very glamorous I'm afraid, but I must say the towel 'pillow' works a treat. Maisie cannot get to her sutures and the towel is much more comfy than those nasty plastic cones. Is there a cat or dog in the world that will tolerate these cones???? I have been witness to a new look in her eyes I have never seen before. A look of pure disdain when she looks at me, the nurse from hell. Poor baby......only two days to go to be rid of her stitches, though there is still a small wound which has been left to heal naturally. I suppose I will be keeping a close eye on her this week, too. Yes indeedy, shall we say an interesting few weeks. Now, don't judge me harshly because those of you who have had the pleasure, (and it is one of life's delightful pleasures) of enjoying a springer spaniel as their faithful companion will know exactly what I mean.
So, with all that sitting and keeping an eye on Maisie as she mostly snores her head off as she runs free and chases imaginary ducks in her dreams, I have been stitching embroidery to my quilt. With each little simple embroidered stitch, I have 'painted' stitchy details onto all the leaves. I must say I am loving the texture the embroidery gives to the leaves, especially the hydrangeas. The texture which is added with the embroidery adds that little bit more dimension and definition, taking my fabric flowers to another realm. This fabric flower garden makes me smile. Love, love, LOVE it❣
Though, I didn't replicate the veins as those afficionados of all things botanical would think perhaps I should. I apologise profusely to those of you who have a Latin botanical book in one hand and Stirling Macoboy's What Flower is That in the other. Naughty of me I know and though I have stitched the veins resembling those that nature would replicate, I have used artistic license with my stitching. After all, my aim with this quilt is to fashion one with a Monet-esque aesthetic, an impressionistic painting, so to speak. Isn't artistic licence a most wonderful thing.
I purchased a tin of 72 Derwent Inktense pencils thinking I would add shading to each flower. They are beautiful pencils with scrummy names such as Fuschia, Scarlet Pink, Lagoon, Sherbert Lemon, Spring Green....and so many more. After playing with the pencils I decided that perhaps I wouldn't use them as much as I thought I would. As this quilt will be a bed quilt, I decided that they might loose their intensity with each wash and as I would have to use a fabric medium with the pencils the quilt would lose the soft tactile feel that I love for a bed quilt. Don't get me wrong, Derwent Inktense pencils are fabulous, but I think they might sing a more lyrical song on an art quilt which would be displayed on a wall and not be washed regularly. I was going to shade the irises with several shades of yellow but decided that stitching with embroidery thread would look spiffier. So, for now I have put them away, eagerly looking forward to playing with them sometime in the future. Though, I did paint the 'splotches' on the corolla of the foxgloves with the pencils. Another thought is that a lot of the fabrics I have used are batiks and dyed so there is an element of shading and interest with a lot of the flowers anyway. With the embroidery on the leaves finished I have begun to add the finer details to the flowers as well.
I am happy with the progress of my fabric flowers. With each embroidered stitch the flowers are slowly blossoming before me. No doubt, with my faithful hound snoring nearby, more delightful stitching will be enjoyed this week. The tulips, gladdies, lilies, granny bonnets, more irises......all need the minutiae, the finer details to make them....well....flowers. Hopefully when next you visit my little place, sweet Maisie will be fully recovered and back to her springing self, and all the fabric flowers will be in full bloom, with their completed faces smiling at all who gaze upon them. Then I can begin to design the wisteria that will meander in a lovely, tangled fashion across the top of my fabric flower garden.
As it is Sunday afternoon here, I will be linking up to Kathy's Slow Sunday Stitching later this evening, where other lovelies all around the globe are putting their feet up, enjoying a little slow hand stitching. With me playing photographer and stylist this morning I too will pick up my needle and thread and enjoy some more embroidery. When speaking to a friend the other day she said it must be lovely to sit, while keeping an eye on Maisie and not feel guilty at all for sitting day after day, enjoying many hours of stitching. I immediately replied that I never feel guilty enjoying all the stitching I do, even if the reason is I just want to stitch. Why, for me to imagine, design and stitch is as necessary as the air I breathe. Why, it is the very essence of me. No pangs of guilt here. =)
Thank you all for visiting my little place to have a peek at what I have been up to. May you all enjoy the loveliest of days with sprinkles of beauty causing you to smile.
Until the next time................
Linking also to Frédérique at Quilting Patchwork Applique