Friday, March 6, 2009

Organising and making runners...

With my wrist/thumb on the mend from the tendonitis I have been holding myself back from hand embroidery and focusing on re-organisation in the house.
One of the big things was putting similar items together, not scattered across two or three (or four) rooms. I started with my fabrics and sewing items which lived in the main area of the house, away from my sewing machine which is set up in our bedroom - all that running round and searching through tubs and drawers started to bug me and I knew that for the sake of my sanity I should put them all in one spot.
As I began combing through the 'many' plastic tubs, various bags, and 8 very deep drawers that held all my fabrics I realised how much my style and taste in fabrics had changed over the three and a half years I'd been a quilter. I found pieces that I'd loved in 2006 but could never imagine using now! So what to do? I put on my ruthless hat and began sorting it all into three piles. The first pile was for me, the things I loved and would use. The second pile was for my friend Ruth and her daughters (Ruth has 11 children so between them all I'm sure the fabric will be put to much creative use). The third pile was for the local charity store - I imagined the glint of delight some women would experience as they found piece after piece of good quilting fabrics to purchase for mere cents. I know I've been blessed like that before and it's such a great feeling!

So what was left? Look and see my new, very visual, fabric/sewing notions bookcase! And it's in our bedroom where I can work easily without hunting things down in tubs and drawers. I just walk over and pick what I want to play with. ;-) I have a wonderful husband who was quite at ease with this addition to our room.

I especially love the fact that the fabric I have now is the fabric I WILL use.

As I opened tubs I discovered a few things I'd forgotten about, things I'd kept for a purpose but never gotten around to using. This fabric pictured below is a very heavy chintzy style, about 4 metres x 2 metres. I picked up this piece in 2004 at a charity store for $3 thinking I'd do something with it one day, though at the time I was not a sewer!

I didn't want to relinquish it just yet but I also didn't want it to sit idle for another 5 years so I made the decision to use some and see how things turned out.
I made a runner first off, for the chest of drawers that used to hold some of my fabrics (but now holds all our DVDs and Blossom's beadings supplies). Isn't it elegant!?

Then I made another for the little table my husband had made for me in 2001 - it always needed 'something' on top and I was never happy with anything until this.
Note the little tray of handkerchiefs on the table? I bought these 5 most beautifully hand embroidered vintage handkerchiefs the day after I found the linens - I paid 20c each and they are exquisite, just what I wanted, so very delicate and old.

Of course Blossom is working hard at redecorating her room so I made another two runners to cover a bookcase and a little chest of drawers.

Then I thought I'd better stop or the whole house will have these identical runners, so I started on a little hand embroidery again...block three of Bea's Fairy Tale BOM, "Snow White and Rose Red".

I still have a lot of decorating and cleaning-out to do, but it's nice to sit still again and just embroider...



  1. Hi Jenny,
    My you have really been busy haven' you. What good use of fabric, looks wonderful, and really enjoy the little stitchery. Off to look at tidying up and sorting my sewing room too (which is really rowing man's study!)

  2. Very nice - I love the use of the white linen fabric. and I love the little stitchery. Off to have a look at this fairytale bom. xxx

  3. You have been very busy and everything looks so nice. I just bought some vintage handkerchiefs this past weekend at an antique store. I would like to use them in a quilt.
    I have noticed my fabrics choices have changed to over the last several years.

  4. I love how you started making a lot and then drew back . . . funny. I can't wait to see the finished embroidery. You are so talented.

  5. the bookshelf looks like a great way to organise your fabric Jenny.

    Everytime I go through my tubs I find some piece that I had forgotten about.

  6. Glad too hear that you are on the if my stuffs was in different areas of the house our house would be a mess-'cause I know what the sewing room area looks like when I'm searching/making something.Good on you for sorting it all out and destashing hehehe...Your runners look great,your embroidery is divine-..not many sleeps now till next wonky eh?
    cheers Vickie


It's always nice to receive feedback on a blog post, so *thank you* for taking time to comment!
I will try to reply via email unless you are a 'no reply blogger' which means you'll have to check for my reply in the comments. Of course, life is a rather hazardous activity, isn't it? So if I don't respond to your comment that's the reason why - life simply stepped in...