Creative Juices . quilting . sewing . knitting .

So, I have been sewing a little, and quilting, and knitting (a very little) and most recently have been hooked on practising lettering – modern calligraphy. My creative juices are all over the place at the moment. But I love the excitement of waking with design ideas rolling around in my head. That is what I have been missing for a year or more.

I love waking, making a coffee, and hurrying to create. It is exhilarating.Sweetie loves her toy sleeping bag

Sweetie loves her ‘toy sleeping bag’

This is all a huge change from watercolour painting, which I will return to eventually, but fresh creative motivation is what I seem to crave now. I tackled quilting and sewing projects for each of our five children and their families …

Andrew's Hudson Bay patterned table runner

above ~ Andrew’s Hudson Bay patterned table runner

Carrie's quilted Boho table runner Carrie's table runner

above ~ Carrie’s quilted BoHo table runner

Greg's Cycling table runner in greys
Greg’s Cycling table runner in greys

Jo's table runner

above ~ Jo’s quilted table runner

Some of my quilting is a little wonky as I am a novice, but loving it!

Steph's decorative linen pillow cases

Steph’s decorative linen pillow cases

Hahaha - my knitting group friends untangling my wool yarn for my afghan (lower right).
Hahaha – my knitting group friends untangling my wool yarn for my afghan (lower right).

Sew, that is what I have been up to the past months. I am finding that, for me, choosing colour and pattern is the most difficult part of these projects. More about that next time.

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SO, SEW ! .

Hello and thank you to followers of who have stuck by me during a long blogging drought.

The past few months, I have been reinventing myself (again), thinking a lot, and planning. That takes a lot out of you 😉 . I haven’t painted in about a year. Instead, my creative juices and reveries are leaning toward sewing and quilting. This is a big leap. I haven’t sewn in 40 years. As a result, the challenge has been a kaleidoscope of a learning curve – becoming familiar then comfortable, with a new machine, re-learning to work those oh-so-tricky bobbins, choosing fabric (such gorgeous, juicy colours and patterns to choose from). Everything is new.

Fabric Stash
Fabric Stash

I buy fabrics that I absolutely love, and find projects simple enough for a beginner, ones I hope my five kids will like as well. You see, I don’t want to put a lot of money and work into an item that ends up in a drawer. I realize that, even if you know them pretty well, guessing someone else’s taste is a crap shoot. As a result, my fabric stash is growing so I think have something for everyone.

The biggest dilemma I have faced is deciding on fabric colour and pattern combinations. It is more difficult that one might think to achieve a pleasing, balanced and artistic combo of colours, values and patterns. Following are some of my first attempts at combining fabrics …

Trial Colour and Pattern Combos Combo2 Combo3 Combo4 Combo5 Combo6

More learning curve frustration occurred while working on early projects – gobs of tangled and knotted threads on the underside of the fabric and my machine jammed constantly. The result of this was hair-pulling frustration. Ultimately, after putting out SOS signals, I discovered I was filling and inserting the bobbin incorrectly.  😬 😂

Eventually, through determination and two refresher courses at the store where I bought my machine, I finished my first sewing projects in about forty years … a baby quilt, two hobo bags and a little black bag:

Label for Evie's Quilt My first Quilt ... for Everly, Oct.2015

Little Black Bag, Oct.2015

Sew-Gerda wearing my Tote

Reversible canvas tote
Reversible canvas tote

Then, I tackled Christmas presents. That will be my next post.

This is fun and addictive!

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. LIFE STAGES * Adapting & Evolving .

I am evolving yet again – another new phase is beginning in my life. And I love the excitement, the adrenaline pumping that comes with embarking on new experiences.

I have bought a new sewing machine as well as quilting fabric enough for a couple of small quilts or tablecloths. No traditional quilts for me. I will do each freestyle, contemporary. I don’t ‘do’ patterns – not in my knitting, not in my quilting. I plan to let my artistic muse guide me (wish me good luck with that) and eventually attempt to create Stitch Art.

Ideas are buzzing around in my head. I feel so pumped. I can hardly wait to begin.

“Life is funny, always rearranging itself.

No yardstick, or quilt ruler, by which to denote the alterations ….”

Anna Scott Graham

Did I mention … this will be the very first sewing I have done in 35-40 years?!

My Quilted Card Table Cloth ca 1975
My Quilted Card-Table Cloth, ca 1975

Each fabric in this table-cloth brings back precious memories ….

. the pastel pink paisley & the tiny pale green polka dot were from beautiful cotton dresses my mother sewed for my first two wee daughters, Caroline and Stephanie. My third daughter Joanna wore the adorable hand-me-downs.

. the deep green I used to make a halter top that tied at the back of neck and waist, leaving my back open. I made matching palazzo pants (remember those?) in a green/cream houndstooth check. I remember feeling very elegant and on trend wearing that ensemble!

. the gorgeous pink floral I remember loving to bits, but I cannot for the life of me recall what I bought that fabric for.

But, back to the present … before I can begin to play with my new Pfaff, I have to finish organizing my art/writing/journaling/knitting room to become my sewing/art/ ….. room. And what a chore – sooooo much stuff.


organizational plan - just the tip of the iceberg
organizational plan – just the ‘tip of the iceberg’

Step 1 – declutter & re-arrange furniture

Step 2 – buy, prime, paint and install peg board. My husband Greg did the installation, with me placing and holding.

Peg Board Prep
My Peg Board Prep

Tomorrow is the big day when my life will take on some order. I have bribed friends Kay and Janis with lunch and wine, to spend the day advising me on organizing my mess. They are the experts – both have amazingly organized craft/sewing rooms – take a peek

Kay's Craft/Sewing Room
Kay’s gorgeous, functional Craft/Sewing Room
Janis & Kay in Janis' craft room where there is a place for everything, and everything is in its place
Janis & Kay in Janis’ craft room where there is a place for everything, and everything is in its place

Next post I will show you what we accomplish in my room.

Wish me luck tomorrow. Cheers!

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