A funny thing happened over the weekend.
I discovered a hobby that makes me smile and fills my heart with happy endorphins.
I wasn't looking for this knowledge, but it actually hit me right in the face because it's always been there but I didn't know.
Are you scratching your head and telling me though the computer screen that I've been doing patchwork for years? Hey, if I were you I'd be doing just that!
But here's the thing.
I embroider all the time, it's my occupation, my work, my income, a responsibility that I enjoy and am blessed to do. Sometimes I make projects from my stitchery designs, but mostly I don't because there's always the next set of patterns to create, a home to manage and a business to run.
So when I pull out the fabrics and do some patchwork there is usually a work related reason, or like I mentioned in a post last week, a desire to finish projects. And I do enjoy that but I never thought about it as a separate thing to my Elefantz work.
Until Saturday afternoon.
We'd picked up some old magazines from the $2 bin at our local newsagents that morning so I brewed a pot of tea and settled down to flick through a few American quilting ones from 2016.
Now here's where it got interesting, like a domino topple where one piece falls onto another, then another, and so on...
* On page 48 of Quilts & More (Summer 2016 issue) I saw a table runner project made from Bonnie & Camille's "Hello Darling" fabrics.
* I thought to myself - "I wonder where the Camille Roskelley book I bought a few years back is hiding?"
* To the bookcase I go, finger scanning the spines of all my craft books. Found!
* Take book back to my tea pot, put the magazine away and start reading through "Simply Retro".
* Get excited about Camille's big block quilts and decide to make a smaller version of her "Vintage" quilt (page 36) using some prints from the new Tilda "Harvest" fabrics I'd been given.
* Wonder what Camille has been up to this year, grab my iPad and google her blog.
* Discover she hasn't blogged for two years but does frequent Instagram.
* Notice in her blog sidebar that she has a Craftsy class.
* Log in to Craftsy and look up the class, read all the reviews, get excited that it's half price and promptly BUY the class!
* Make more tea, grab some bikkies and settle back down to watch the first two lessons.
* Light bulb moment. I LOVE patchwork.
* Another light bulb moment. My patchwork skills were all self taught from craft magazines when I first picked up a rotary cutter, needle and thread at the end of 2005. I've never had a lesson and I want some.
And there is was, an epiphany that has filled my happy tank because I'm learning things I didn't know (further lessons along) and enjoying patchwork as a hobby, not an occupation.
By Sunday afternoon I'd made three Granny Square blocks from the "Vintage Quilt" pattern. Here's the first two...
...and on Monday morning (today) after I saw Mr E off to work, I set about making the little pin cushion from Camille's second lesson because it was simply adorable and you know I have a heart for pincushions.
Gorgeous, right? Only 4" square, it's my new favourite.
Now bitten severely by the patchwork bug I gave myself the entire day off work to play with Mr E's approval and encouragement.
I LOVE that man.
I decided to continue with my plan to regularly make projects from all my orphan stitchery designs but now with the intent that anything I make must serve a purpose or have a function.
We really need new bedside table runners, but Mr E being a bloke he's not much into girly styles, so until I can find some fabrics that will work for him I began with a cover for my own side table.
I chose the "Bloom Where You Are" block from last year's Gentle Domesticity BOM (pattern is in my shop) and cut 2 1/2" strips of pastel fabrics from my scrap box.
Most of the fabrics were used but some didn't really work so they've been put aside for a different project on another day.
However I did finish my table runner by mid afternoon and it's beautiful!
It is 16" x 22", simply made with 2 1/2" squares, and exactly what I wanted for the bedroom.
I have a lovely sense of satisfaction right now, and excitement about what to make the next time I indulge time in my 'hobby'.
Oh, and I didn't forget to do something special for my husband while I was playing.
Between the piecing and the quilting I baked him another Strawberry Shortcake.
Seriously, this is our yummiest winter treat so we have it often.
Download the recipe here.
If you lasted this long reading my blog post you deserve a slice of strawberry shortcake too!
Now if you could just tell me how to pass it through the screen we could have a tea party as well.
Oh, almost forgot. In our Gentle Domesticity Facebook group this week we're encouraging each other to finish a small UFO project.
If you'd like to join us you will find the group HERE.
Tomorrow I have some beautiful projects made by two very talented ladies to show you.
Till then, have a wonderful new week!