This morning the little kitten I wrote about some months ago was taken to the vet to be spayed. She had found a home with neighbours but often came to visit us. The family she adopted loved her dearly and she was an amazing little character. Sadly she died under the anesthetic leaving her new family heartbroken and I too found myself feeling very miserable both for her and the distress of the family. I was glad to go into my workroom and sew. I finished two more journal pages and have several more started. As I looked through all the photos of my family and friends and thought about my neighbours and the little cat it reminded me how we never know what the next day might hold for us. It made my journal making have some meaning and I hope I can make one for each of my children.
Anna a lovely friend came round one morning this week and helped me sort out all the many drawers and boxes of lace and jewellery I have collected for years and years. I love to see everything beautifully organised and finding so much I had forgotten. Anna has organised me before, the room is usually in such a muddle we ever only sort a small part of it but I am managing to let go of masses of things I've had for years and know I will never use. It was a good feeling when I went into the workroom the following day and soon found myself working on the idea of a journal about my family. I have many old black and white family photos and I printed a few onto fabric. The first page is my mother,I should think this was taken in a studio as my father isn't there. Strangly I haven't one with both of them, though I have many other's of my father.The opposite page shows the wedding invitation. I fouund the bill from the hotel where they stayed for their Honey moon,£9,6 shillings for 6 nights with an extra £1 added for baths!!!This was 1938 the year befor war broke out. I have 4 other pages started so far. I already realise I will probably need to make two journals. I also began a panel for a cushion cover and have been doing a little hand sewing in the evenings.
I spent several more hours today trying to get somewhere. Then suddenly it came to me that what I have been trying to do is make things quickly so I had something to post here. In the past I would take ages and ages to make things ,particuallyanything with free machine embroidery and all the quilts I have made. Some of those took me a year!!!!!!! I went and pulled out some of them,counted 18 quilts. It was fun to see how the work gradually became more complex. Then I looked at photos of many of the cushion coversI made, many with finely embroidered butterflies,bugs and dragon flies.I never used patterns and had to take time drawing until I liked one before I used the design .Same thing went for bags I made. I sat and thought for a while then cleared away everything on my table, came down stairs , had a cup of coffee then took out some paper and pencils and sketched out some ideas. I spent some time drawing with my sewing machine and the results were pretty poor but I knew where was going. What a relief to sort myself out.
Since last friday have spent all my precious spare time in my workroom trying first this and then that again. Its been happening for what seems like weeks,I simply cannot get anywhere . I wondered if I should stay away for a while,read books ,write letters,go for a walk?I sewed some flowers, cut out some things that had been sitting around for weeks and weeks, made attemps at making backgrounds for panels to make some cushions.( Badly needed)Nothing, but nothing, seems right and I was surprised to find myself feeling very miserable about it. I sat and looked at lots of beautiful work on other peoples blogs, shrugged my shoulders and said to myself "well I shall just have to keep trying" I am also thanking here those kind people who have said my muse will return, In the photo are some of the things I made and found and played around with. Tomorrow I will put many of them to one side, less may be better!!
Lately when Tony comes back with things he has found at Brocante's or Flea markets, to put on his auction site, I seldom want to keep any thing, but this head dress I so wanted to keep. I put it on my favourite terracotta head and thought it looked beautiful. I put the head back where it always stands with the veil and tira in place and as I thought" perfect" a small black cat attemped to grap hold of it. What a relief I was right there, she loves anything she can get her claws in and tries to toss and shake it!!!!!!!!!!I looked around hoping to find a safe place but this is a cottage and its hard to find somewhere cat proof. So I can't keep it, Tony was pleased .
I spent several hours today using my paints. Its so long since I have tried to paint I just had a good time mixing colours and playing around.The end results were put away with a few reminders of what to do and what not to do. Its a beginning,I am happy. When ai had had enough I cleared up and finished the crown. The first one I realised was way to0 big so this one is smaller. I wish, how I wish ,I could do more wacky things but it seems its not in my nature and no matter how I try it never works for me. I must find an online workshop .
I suddenly decided I would try and make a crown. Yesterday I saw one my daughter had made using a card base and then applying all sorts of different bits and bobs. It looked fun to make . I used all fabric as the base and glued and stitched the lace etc to it. Its fastened at the back with ribbon. I am going to give it to my friend so she can wear it when she does her cookery demos!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I have spent many hours in my workroom these last few days . Started many things but each time reached a point where I thought this is awful,discarded it and began something else. In between I read books ,admired the duck,who has become truly beautiful,danced to an Abba CD, played with the cats,well anything to divert myself from facing all these bad beginnings. Danny has become a lovely diversion. he ducks and dives, flaps his wings and is full of energy. It is sad someone cut the tendons of his wings and he can't fly.He has several moorhens for company and they are always around him so maybe its not so bad, at least he is safe. His white breast would make him any easy target for La Chasse if he wasn't on our land.
Though it has been a busy few weeks and I have been unable to spend time in my workroom,I have been thinking about what I could make next. Trouble is I have a room stuffed with fabric,lace, threads, old photos,cuttings from magazines,faded shabby silk flowers and more. I know I should try and use the things I already have. I pulled out a quilt I made early last year using mostly silk fabrics I had hoarded for years. I had disliked it so much when it was finished I put it away out of sight. It was again a case of using what I had and the end result didn't please me.I have even more now,but feel I would like to make a pale pretty quilt using the same principal of making lots of 10inch squares. I have many bits and pieces but little pale fabric. The quilt reminded me how much I used to like drawing then sewing the centers of each square. Perhaps I will make cushions,we do need some and I probably wouldn't have to compromise on my fabric choices.
But then I do want to make another journal, I think I will start something and see what happens