Wednesday, 25 December 2013

CHRISTMAS HAS COME....and gone .......just like that!

Oh the joy of it all, and no I am sorta not being sarcastic but I sorta am.
I work for a church and for me I get to experience the two sides of this festive season. I observe the coming of advent, the anticipation of the birth of a special child, the religious meaning that will be different to all around the world.
Then I get to see the stress and anxiety trying to make this one day of the year.."perfect". OH BOY.

How do we humans manage to sometimes suck the fun out of these things? And I will confess that I was one of those perfectionists once. 
I blame advertising personally, all those images of happy gift giving families that come together and are happy in each others company. 
It hurts when your own family isn't quite like that and you have no other comparison as a child, no other family that tries to get along but just doesn't quite make it.....well join with me and realise we can only do the best we can.

My daughter is overseas this year, my son has a fabulous relationship with a young woman whose birthday is Christmas Day and my mother would rather be with my sister in another state now she is widowed. 
This year I was free of all expectations and stress. 
I was happy for my daughter and her travels, she will be back and we will enjoy each others company another time, just not at Christmas. My son will be back home soon having spent a wonderful day with his other family and we will talk again, not just at Christmas. My mother will return and we will continue to try and get along, just not at Christmas.

I have dropped all expectations for this one day, ignored all the hype and spent time with those who are here today.

I have greeted neighbours with a cheery smile and hope to catch up again, not just at Christmas. Don't get me wrong, I am just as excited as anyone about Christmas but if it goes a little awry then I dont get upset, its only one day and it doesn't need the stress of being perfect.

Before my daughter left to travel she made this little village from a kit. 

How sweet is that, I loved taking photos and imagining what it would be like to see real buildings decorated like that.

Found some sweet chocolates for adding to the festive feel.

Was given a sweet gift 

And made and sent a little something to a dear penpal.

The pin cushion is a Anna Maria Horner design and the house from Kajsa Wikman's book "Scandinavian Stiches".

I had so much fun on these little projects and enjoy sending them onto other people, somewhat quicker than a quilt and still says handmade with love.

I also received a lovely gift from my penpal Dagmar, who I have really enjoyed getting to know. This is why I am happy all year around not just at Christmas.

A little cosmetic bag, with a very clever zip placement.

The zip spirals from the top corner to the lower corner.

And inside the purse was a bundle of fabric squares, I am so pleased to receive such a suprise and I have a scrap project that will use these squares in many ways.
Thank you Dagmar.

I can thank this blog for this friendship, as Dagmar contacted me via email through this medium. I write on with such joy in my heart as you never know where things will lead. 

So Christmas is gone and .....oh don't get me started on New Years Resolutions.....but that's another story.

Heres to further joy and NOT JUST AT CHRISTMAS!!!

Friday, 8 November 2013

LIFE ..........can be so overwhelming at times.

Well, events in ones life can seem to be too much, but quilting and creating has taught me so much about coping when it gets a bit crazy out there.

hehe,  couple of crazy cats.

Its all good folks, I am doing great,  just in case those of you with sensitive souls get worried.....

I am soooooo blessed to have such a supportive spouse and time to create, because I do think that without the creativity I would be swamped. Everyone needs a hobby, that thing that gets them out of bed and looking forward to the day ahead.

I spent the time cutting up fabric when I was feeling stressed after dealing with a stubborn elderly parent. It helped me calm down and not lash out in my frustration and their fear.

This corner of the table was my haven, piles of fabric reduced to tiny hexagons that one day will make another purse. I am looking forward to that!

More hexagons that will come together in another project.

And that is what my creative pursuit has taught me, at first it may seem overwhelming." I cannot do that", I have said , and I have heard others say.
If you look at the finished quilt it can seem too much, but if we sit a while and break it down into small pieces, it doesn't seem too bad after all.

We add the little tasks together and before we know it, a larger piece appears. We are progressing forward.

I have recently had to step up at work to cover for a collegue, sadly for them life has been too overwhelming. I too was nervous, would I cope with the extra in my life? I mean I had just got everything so well balanced, I didn't want to upset my apple cart.

But I did as I would do in my creative world, I stopped , took a deep breath and broke it down into small pieces. Slowly I picked up the pace and things progressed forward.

Things got done at work, projects will be finished at home.

This project waits quietly, it too will be a slow and steady creative escape.

A pleasant interlude when I want to sit and stitch with little thought.

And that is what quilting has taught me about life.

Saturday, 5 October 2013

I really should be doing something else.....

and I will get back to it eventually but I need a chat and a sit down.
I have had a major spurt of activity in the sewing room and getting out and about, so lets share our days adventures shall we?

Firstly I snuck out of the house early on the weekend to catch up with this annual event.
This wonderful venue is host to a yearly hanging of quilts, with entrance fees, raffles and various other fundraisers going to the charity supporting those with breast cancer.
It is an intimate event but very well patronised, as I discovered when I arrived!! I thought that on the day of a major sporting event, the crowds would be down, I arrived just after a BUSLOAD of lovely ladies arrived.........all good, I waited patiently and soon was able to peruse the display.

Gasp, the theme this year was chintz, my favourite, love a full blown rose in my fabric. (Well that is what chintz means to me)

This caught my eye because just now I am enamoured with hexies, more on that later, delicious isnt it?

This was a lone block, I loved the faded glory, sorry the picture is rubbish but I did mention a busload of ladies didnt I?
There were several antique quilts on display, but pictures were not permitted, sadly, and I do follow the rules, sadly...:-)

These were permitted to be photographed, its broderie perse, or something like that, cut and paste , sew. How rich are these colours still? This is an antique quilt. I love how these ladies would be just as creative as us, using available fabric and creating pretty things for the home.

Heehee, this was the frantic activity around a stall selling fabric, no line up at the cake stall, so I went there until the frenzy subsided.

This is modern quilt with an antique medallion centre, again I was drawn to the faded tones, it all balanced well with the antique fabric and had the feel of something made long ago.

This was a large panel centre and simple borders, love the colours in this one. Again I apologise for the quality of the photo, the light was difficult and it was blowing a gale outside. In the barn all the quilts were swaying gently, hence no awesome shots possible.

This was the front and back of the raffle quilt, still waiting for someone to ring and tell me I have won it? Sigh!!!

More beautiful hexagons, seriously can you ever tire of these things?...Dont answer that!

Someone was very patient and clever....see this is why I hold onto scraps, one day I think I will do something like this.....I day........maybe........lets just have another piece of cake and think a bit more.
And it is this activity that sends me back to the sewing room to obsess over my scraps...aaaaarrrrgggghhhh.

Monday, 23 September 2013

Friends are like a patchwork quilt......

I was totally inspired by the recent writings of Miss Vintage Sheet Addict as to how we all interact here in blog world and out there in real world.

I see us all as one big patchwork quilt. All touching each other, all needing each other to make the whole thing work.

Some are worn and battered a little fractured and not in the bloom of youth.

Some are loud and flashy, bright and sparky, the life of the party.

Some are full of love, giving all to those around them.

Some are a bit dotty!

Some a little straight.

Some at first look dull and sober but their fibre is strong.

Some are plain.

Some are pretty.

But together it all looks right and there is strength.

I find inspiration a lot from those I meet along the way, I have been inspired to take up new sports when I was young, inspired to peek out and push my boundaries, inspired to keep going in tough times, inspired to garden more.
Inspired to dress just the way I damn well please, whatever my age, inspired to collect silly things just because they make me smile.

I am not original because I meet so many that belong to my tribe, but it makes me smile to know there are so many like minded people all over the world. That makes me hopeful for our future.

So I just thought I would say again Thank you for your blogs and inspiration, your words, your pictures , your encouragement.

I dont even know who reads this blog, but I know I read others and sometimes leave no trace.........because I am shy...:-) a little.
So again I am going on because yes I am INSPIRED . 

The quilt by the way was a find in my local op shop! Seriously these things NEVER happen to me, but that day, there it was sitting in the window. I was breathless hoping it would not be sold before I got to the counter. I LOVE IT. 
The work, the fabrics, the colour guessed it INSPIRING!!!!!!

This is one of those crazy things that make me smile. To some out there in the world its not much, to me I know the love and care and creativity that went into such a piece as I know ALL you guys understand too.
So to the lovely person who created this patchwork, I treasure your work and will value your creativity.