Saturday, December 24, 2011

Season's Greetings

Happy Christmas and very best wishes for a happy and healthy 2012.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Town Square

It seems absolutely ages since I attempted a block of the Nine Patch Nirvana quilt, but after successfully tackling a Sentimental Journey block yesterday, and with time on my hands [!!] out came the fabric for block 4.
It is easy to see how this block was named Town Square:  four substantial red brick buildings in the outer corner of the square ... church, school, library and council chambers?    Or do you have other ideas?  Grassy paths lead to the town square where folks congregate and exchange news and gossip.  The cream pieces?  Shops and other incidentals to daily life.

These blocks are a breeze, a lot less work than the Sentimental Journey and I feel guilty at such a quick finish; almost feel the need to start another!  But!  Commonsense does reign at times. 

Thursday, December 15, 2011

As Time Goes By

Block 4 in the Sentimental Journey quilt is completed!  At the beginning of December I wondered if time would allow its start, little alone completion, but this morning I posted off what I think is the end of my Christmas mail, came home, had a coffee, read a little short story, and decided to start on Block 4, As Time Goes By ... time might go by too fast if that start wasn't made.

In spite of a muggy early afternoon I cut and stitched; a cooler strong wind whistled past the sewing machine in the mid afternoon; a decided plus!
Result ... block 4 finished ... and no need to think about block 5 until next month ... next year!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

A bell and cushions

Yesterday a very exciting game of cricket was played in Tasmania, Australia; the New Zealand Black Caps V Australia.  After a disappointing loss, for the Kiwis, in the 1st test, and what I believed to be a not so flash start to the 2nd Test, suddenly on Day 4, the game became interesting.  Washing, of clothes and floors, completed there were several other pressing tasks for my day, but with the likely chance of NZ cleaning up the Aussies on the cricket pitch I had to find a small project to justify my sitting and listening to the game.

Several weeks ago, at another Garage Sale, I picked up a plain wooden bell shape of wood, thinking that one day I might do something with it.  For the princely sum of 10cents who could leave such a bargain behind?  A container of paints yielded red and green, and an impressive bronze shade.  It wasn't difficult to trace two bunches of holly leaves onto the bell, and sitting in my armchair, I painted and listened to the enthralling, though often scary game.  Would NZ win?  I hoped so.  Significant Other left the room ... he has not the heart for the highs and lows of a game of cricket at the crunch!

All was well ... NZ won the cricket with seven runs in hand, and I completed painting and embellishing the bell, that will be added to our Christmas decorations.

For several days, weeks in fact, as the urge only comes upon me at the 11th hour, I have been sewing.  Last night I completed the last of my hand-crafted gifts, a cushion.  On a count-up the tally of cushions made over the last wee while exceeds half a dozen.  There is something about cushions!  They don't take long to make, and if given as gifts the thought of colour and stitching fulfils the creative mood of the moment.

These two cushions, going to different people, indeed different countries, are part of a family of patterns I saved for 'the future'.  I seem to recall making another last year as well. 

The colours selected are, hopefully, if my intuition is correct, suitable for the recipients.  Anyway, I did enjoy making them!  'Tis a pity this house is not large ... in all honesty there are few corners left for another cushion, but ... gifts?  I am sure my mind will come up with more ideas!

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Gift giving

Near the beginning of this year I determined that many of the gifts I sent would be 'handmade', as somehow Christmas has become so commercial as to be ridiculous.

I did begin early stashing completed items away in a big plastic box.  Yet once again as the 25th draws near and as I found patterns crying out to be made, I have engaged in a rush to make more.  Already that box is empty; many gifts that needed posting are winging their way across the oceans, and I am still stitching.

This little table topper has a simple charm.  Over the years I have purchased fat q's of Christmas fabric, having I will confess, no particular project in mind.  Two or three early in the season, followed by another couple in the sales does tend to appreciate [as interest in a bank?].  Two table toppers down, a third, that is destined to stay at home, almost complete.  And, there is fabric for another two or three next year!  Oh, I will need to purchase fabric for the outer border, but isn't that what sale time is for?
This table topper would look equally delightful in colours to suit a particular kitchen or dining room ... that idea is in the back of my mind for an easy sewing project during the year.