Gorgeous gifts – and a serious tidy up


Aren’t I lucky? look what lovely little whimsies my friend Annette made for me. They are Christmas ornaments – I was supposed to get them before Christmas, but life got in the way. Annette and another friend and I have now made it a tradition to meet just before Christmas for afternoon tea at the Hyatt Hotel. Very posh and indulgent. We had to cancel at the last minute as Annette’s grandson decided to arrive early via an emergency Cesarean, so we arranged to meet today, and duly exchanged our gifts.

My gift to her was a goody bag filled with silk ribbons and luscious fabrics. I have been having a big tidy up. Early last year, my middle daughter moved back home rather suddenly, and I had to clear out a spare room – which I had of course taken over for my ‘stuff’. It all got bundled up and just stuck anywhere I could find a spot. That is one reason I wasn’t all that productive last year – I couldn’t find anything, and tended to exhaust whatever energy and enthusiasm I had just trying to locate the wherewithall to make something. She has moved out again now so have decided that the time is ripe for a big clean up and sort out.

I have moved my sewing machine and my embellisher into the one room, and finally have a proper design wall to work on. I have started working through the boxes and piles of ‘stuff’ and doing a serious cull. Where on earth did it all come from? I’ll never live long enough to use it all.

The patchwork fabrics are getting cut into 2 1/2 inch strips ready to be sewn into charity quilts. The fancy stuff I have culled to one medium size box per colour grouping – pastels/darks/cream & golds. That is still more than I will probably ever use myself – the rest I am giving away. I am quite horrified by how much stuff I have – I feel like it owns me, not the other way around. Time for action!

What do other people do? I can sew the patchwork fabrics into quilts and either keep to use, or give away, but what about the fancy stuff? I like CQ and silk ribbon embroidery, but just how many pretty things does one need? Personally, I’m not into ‘pretty things’ sitting around the place – dust catchers, my mother used to call them!

Oh well, I have to go finish my January journal quilt, which turned out not at all like I was planning, and keep clearing up my lovely new sewing room – trouble is I got waylaid on the weekend – no sooner had my lovely design wall gone up than I just had to put something on it – so merrily dragged out a pile of fabrics and started creating a simple tesselating design I’d seen in a book the day before – now it’s not like I don’t have a pile of UFOs that I could more usefully deal with – no, I had to start another one. I couldn’t help it – that big blank white design wall just had to have something on it! And this is rather bright and cheerful, don’t you think?

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