This heartfelt design, which speaks of the love put into everything I make for others, has taken a while to finish.
I designed "Homemade from the Heart" back in late August when I received the Tilda "Cottage" fabrics. The centre applique block was stitched the first weekend of September but then we decided to move house so it was packed away for a while and to be honest once we'd settled in here I just wasn't sure how to finish it.
So it has sat waiting in open view on my sewing room table, neglected (even avoided) for over four weeks now, because not a glimmer of an idea passed through my thoughts.
I'm pretty good with the business of designing embroideries, but ideas for displaying them in a project requires far more creative thought than I can usually muster in a given time frame.
But you know, when you leave something for a while and go about your life doing other things, one day an idea just falls upon your heart...and that's what happened yesterday.
My beloved was quite unwell and in a lot of pain when he woke in the early morn so he took the day off work to heal up.
I decided there'd be no Elefantz work for me either, that I'd do a little baking instead, maybe some hand sewing and perhaps paint my wooden serving tray now that the rain is gone.
Around mid-morning I was preparing that Tomato Tart recipe I showed you the other day, reflecting on how simple it was with just a handful of ingredients and needing only a few minutes preparation before baking in the oven.
And that's when the 'penny dropped' as my dear Pop would say.
Just keep it simple.
Back in the sewing room I cut fabric for three simple borders and binding while the Tomato Tart baked.
After lunch the sewing machine came to life and so did this mini quilt.
With a cup of tea at my side and an old episode of Downton Abbey on the telly, I hand quilted in the ditch between the borders and also a line inside the white border.
All that was left was to attach the binding around the outside edge, add a hanging sleeve and sew the binding to the back.
Simple, sweet, heartfelt and handmade.
Exactly what this pattern was designed to express.
I've hung it above my desk where I can be reminded daily to simplify life and designs and ideas and even relationships, to focus on what's important and not the superfluous stuff, to make daily moments count more than 'dreamy' long term plans.
The pattern for "Homemade from the Heart" (embroidery/applique and mini-quilt in one) is in my shop now if you'd like to make it for yourself or as gift for someone you care about.
Visit my Craftsy Shop here to browse all my patterns
That Tomato Tart was indeed delicious and will appear again on our dining table.
The recipe suggested using Roma tomatoes as they have less juice and we love them anyhow so I had plenty in the fridge.
A puff pastry base is spread with mustard ( I used Dijon) and the tomatoes are layered over it.
Salt and pepper, a sprinkling of fresh oregano leaves and cheese...
...and into the oven at 180C for 35 minutes.
Served with a scattering of fresh basil, more oregano and a green salad, and our lunch was ready.
Honestly, it was delicious.
Next time I'll bake this in a long tray and perhaps at a slightly higher temperature as the base wasn't quite as crisp as we like, but really we had no complaints tucking in. Simple, rustic even. Like us.
I think this recipe would be a good one to play around with, using the main idea as a recipe base and then altering it with other simple ingredients (what you have on hand). Perhaps throw on some roasted peppers and olives, use pesto as your base and replace the grated cheese with feta.
Mmm...I'm getting ideas for Sunday lunch!
It's Friday lunchtime in my part of the world now and my tummy is rumbling after writing about yesterday's fare so I'll sign off with a hug and a smile, praying the weekend ahead is a peaceful one for you, overflowing with love, laughter, good food and Jesus.
Be blessed always!