A couple of weeks ago I showed you some slow hand quilting I'd been enjoying during a time of rest. The stitcheries were from my December 2016 issue of The Stitchery Club...
...and they've been patiently waiting (quite a while) for their moment to shine. Way back then I'd already bordered the centre design with a pretty pink spot and stitched the long triple heart block four times intending to use it in a second border.
It was such a delight to finally bring this idea together and create a beautiful pillow for our precious 2yo granddaughter, Rafella...
I took it over when I visited Blossom last week and little Raf (as we call her) was first out of the front door to come hug me. When I handed her the pillow and said "This is for you, baby girl"...well, you would have thought I'd given her the world.
She cuddled it and loved on it all morning, her little exclamations of "Nana made a pillow for meeeeee!" melting my heart. Raf is a quiet little thing in comparison to Cully May, and also a very joyous child who gets excited when her big sister gets a gift (as in Cully May's 4th birthday last month) with no hint of jealousy.
Which is why this Nana wanted to give her something extra special of her own. One day she'll understand the words I chose to add in the pink spot border, but for right now she just knows she's loved and that pillow is cuddled each night.
When I showed those photos of my hand quilting in progress last month there was great interest from many ladies who contacted me to ask for the embroidery patterns, so I've added that entire issue of The Stitchery Club to my Etsy Shop. It contains six designs which I think would be just gorgeous displayed within a quilt.
So what else can you make from these stitcheries?
I featured one on the pocket of a pincushion which was gifted to a friend overseas...
I have shared quite a few pincushion tutorials over the years but if you like pocket style pinnies have a look at THIS tutorial. It will give you an idea how to create something similar from a stitchery or fussy cut piece of fabric.
I quite seriously LOVE pocket pinnies!
They're great for taking with you on a sewing day because you can pop scissors, threads, pins and needles all together in one pretty place.
Another bit of hand quilting I completed recently was this smaller fussy cut hexie-centred pillow, a 'just right' pillow to rest my hands on while I stitch. A decade ago I realised embroidering with a hoop wasn't working for me so I began resting the heels of my hands on a small pillow as I stitched and it made all the difference to my level of comfort and also brought about a lovely soft sense of calm.
Aren't those fabrics sweet? They are a new release here in Australia through Devonstone Fabrics and the designer is Elise Martinson. A number of the prints have sections which can be fussy cut into quilt blocks, applique or displayed like this in a hexagon.
Because I was so taken with the sentiment of HOME (no surprise to you, right?) I decided to use more of the same print as a bookmark.
All I did was take two 1.5" hexagon papers (mine are very thin cardboard) and using the blue fabric, centring the 'home' design into the centre of one, I basted the fabric around each one.
Then I sewed the two ends of a "6mm x whatever length you choose" piece of elastic together and placed the join in between the wrong sides of the fabric hexies before stitching the two hexies together around the outside with whip stitch.
Once that was done I removed the basting stitches and voila, I had a cute bookmark.
Next time I might cover the elastic but this was a spur of the moment idea and I actually had to get some elastic from Blossom because it's hard to find any these days due to home sewing face mask production around the world.
I also made something else last week (what a productive sewing week it was!) but I'll show you that next post.
This week I'm busy with spring cleaning, garden maintenance and creating a very simple menu plan...like in the old days. And that dear friends is something else I'll write about next time. Mr E and I have had a little mind shift of late and reassessed what's going to carry us through the next year, what can be put aside, and what we can genuinely do at our age because the years are adding up and we'd like to stay healthy and strong for the long haul and not burn our bodies out before their time.
God bless you lovely friends, and I say that with complete honesty - I pray often that He will bless you, that His presence will bring you hope and strength and joy.
I'll leave you with this photo of my latest vase display...dill fronds. Aren't they marvellous?! I had to harvest our dill plants and as we already have 'thousands' of tiny seeds for future planting these beautiful green heads could be brought inside for a different floral display. They last for weeks and smell wonderful....
...and a photo of Blossom and Rafaella in the new dress Bloss made her. Honestly, my daughter can sew like a dream and has just decided she's going to spend time smocking in the future. She finds it calming.
I don't think I'd say that, but then again she thinks I'm strange for choosing hand quilting as my calm pastime. Don't you love how God made us all so unique?