I like patchworking. For some time it’s been small(ish) things I made, and only few required quilting.
I like once in a while to make something big, though. So when my Mum talked of buying a new bedspread I jumped at the chance to sew her one. Heaven knows she made plenty of clothes for me as I grew up harbouring a strange notion that I could not wear jeans, only corduroy trousers. I have no idea how many pairs came out of her sewing machine. I just know I loved every pair and wore them all out.
I generally don’t mind quilting big things either. Granted the first fem lines or knots are a bit of a hassle to get done. The rest of it is plain sailing because I dutifully baste together the three layers including the stuffing before I start quilting.
And that part is the biggest obstacle. Bacause as I have no table big enough nor any frame I have to lay it on the floor, sit down with straight legs under it and baste with one hand over and one under. Even though I stitched together more than 400 patches by hand that process feels as if it takes far longer time. My lower back screeches in pain, I stab myself constantly with the needle, and I have to wear my thimble which I otherwise never do for want of feel of the needle.
At least I’m done and can start quilting. This time it’ll be in points, strewing buttons on the pattern at random.
Hence the kisses from Peter Pan: Buttons and a thimble. Oh, how I wish they felt as good as my husbands’ …
I write. Not just this blog (and another one in Danish) but also fiction. Sometimes I write non-fiction too when I describe some of the patterns et c. I make for various craft projects.
And when you write you get – at least some people get – the notion that someone might want to publish your writing. So you send off a manuscript to veraous publishers, big and small.
And then you wait. Watch your mail box for at least an auto-reply that tells you that your heart and soul reached their destination. And you wait some more.
From time to time you loose patience, often as not only to wish you didn’t because the long-awaited answer is a refusal.
And then just once in a while you get a chance. This just happened to me even if it was in disguise: I wrote up descriptions with lots of snaps of a select number of patchwork patterns and looked for publishers specialising in the field. Then I wrote to those publishers. Finally I posted in a patchwork group on Facebook if others had good suggestion of “never fail always good books” from a specific publisher.
That was when chance entered the equation. A group member with a shop wrote to me because she could well want to sell my patterns in her shop.
The lesson I learned from this? Just the usual: Timing is what makes chances occur.
I’m not sure how much it reveals about me that I – often as not – think of titles of songs or movies when writing a title for a new post. This time it’s 10 CC.
The thing I currently do for love is basting. Usually when I sew my box of pins is all I need. To me basting is just a way to waste time sewing seams twice. Yet now I do precious little but baste.
The reason is the bedspread that popped up in two posts already. But hey – since I hand-sew my patchwork I have to baste them into correct size first. Which takes time because there are 468 of them.
Bringing me back to things we do for love: It’s for my darling Mum. She deserves all the love I pour into the work.
This post is a first for me: A second post in a row on the same piece of craft.
It’s the embroidered shop again. And I post about it this week as well in order to boast of my progress. Because even if it is by nature slow going, something did happen over tha past seven days:
It’s just as sideways as last week. But just click back and forth between last week and this to admire the difference! Most of the door, a good deal of the second window. I really am quite pleased with myself.
The finished picture is going to a friend, and I’m going to see her in two weeks’ time. I can’t get it done before I see her, because one colour ran out too soon. Most of it can be done though. Since it just lay around idle for a long time, I’ll be happy to hand it over.
And then go on with the patchwork project of 480 individual pieces I started on …
Yes I know it’s the title of an old movie. From 1960 more precisely, which makes it older than I am. And I never saw it nor the remake from 1986.
So why name a crafts blog post after it? Because this is one of the things I’m working on at the moment:
Sorry it’s on the side. Turn your head, your screen or just think of another movie: When Harry met Sally. She has everything on the side.
I’m almost more sorry it doesn’t really show all the shading that means areas of few stitches in each colour. Such areas take forever and usually have me cursing under my breath. Add to this the fact tht I do this embroidery for someone else because I’d never hang anything like that on my wall and I have to ask myself: Why do I do this? Why do I take the time?
I actually still like it. I like seeing a pattern and a motif come to life under my fingers. And so I have a feeling it won’t be tha last piece I do.
Just the last for a while.
My red sweater is finally done! This includes the silken neckband that I had to go to a specialised shop to get. It was worth it just like it was worth the work. It turned out exactly the way I hoped it would.
So why did I caption this post with the words “goodnight, hot night”? Because this is a night sweater. Yes, I’m serious: Women used to sleep in sweaters like this. It was what you wore to bed some 150 years ago and before. In fact you would go to bed dressed in a linen slip and a sweater like this (more or less), sleep in something akin to a cupboard, cover yourself with a woolen sack stuffed with feathers and down and lined with a linen sheet. And you would half sit instead of lying down.
This was how every peasant woman slept for easily 200 years. Whenever I go to the open-air museum or think about it I wonder how they ever made all the children they had.
Hay must have something to do with it. Somehow. Because nice and warm as a sweater like this one is in those drafty, unheated-at-night houses, sex is the furthest away on my mind when I imagine the sleeping arrangement.
Of course, I’ll just wear this to keep warm. (And look … nice)
Yes I know I did not post for a long time. The main reason is that my work life has been in chaos for just as long. It’s finally settling into some sort of order and I can muster the oomph to do things other than work.
The one thing I was able to do was take up a sweater that’s been on hold for several months. Most likely to give myself something mindless to do and an idea that something was moving towards a definable target. And look now how close to finished it is:
The first two snaps are details of pattern and of the – if I may say so myself – rather brilliant way I went about not having to sew on the sleeves by picking up cast-off-stitches and knitting them together with the edge stitches at the sides.
The pattern is my take on a theme of regional variations of the so-called night sweater worn by women in Denmark in the 16-17-18-hundreds. The sweaters were more or less hidden away for festive occasions but visible when they worked. The crossed double bars and the eight-point stars were more or less standard, but some had only patterned sleeves, some had a patterne likes angles or V’s in rows on the trunk et c. I could find a partial pattern for the sleeves alone, and the stars had to grow with the sleeve to keep the same number pattern row by pattern row. I ended up with 6 pieces of A4-sized checkered paper taped together to make sure I got it right.
Those women did without pattern. Just skill. This sweater has given me enormous respect for them. Nowadays you really only see sweaters like these with folk-dancers performing in costumes. I call taht a pity: Let’s give this pattern a revival. Show our skills.