Waiting In The Wings

Saturday, May 27, 2023

Five weeks blogging missed thanks to a spider!

Would like to first say thank you to all who left comments on my last post 24 April, my apologies for not replying. I had hoped to do so two days later and have a few rows of Tussie Mussie sewn up to post, but only had the one sewn and pinned on my too narrow design wall when I had an argument with a spider!

Hopped into bed 26 April, read a few pages of my current book, light out and turned over onto my right side when my leg, a few inches above the ankle, began to burn, sting, tingle, throb, couldn't think what on earth was happening.  DH  thought was somehow a burn or a graze. - not possible!  The next day there was obviously a problem, by this time inflammation was slowly spreading  all around the area with a nasty wound in the centre. Off to the local emergency department.  Result - couldn't decide what had happened but massive doses of antibiotics for seven days, told to keep leg elevated, five weeks of visiting my usual Doctor's surgery every couple of days for dressing changes, wound cleaning and still elevating leg. Healing up now but the consensus is there must have been a white tailed spider in the bed and in turning I obviously lay on it and it wasn't too happy about that.  These spiders can cause real damage to the surrounding flesh on occasion, my leg was one of the occasions!

Sadly I was going to have my pacemaker replaced the week after all this happened but this was postponed due to the darned spider, now scheduled for June 23rd.

So I've been spending time sewing hexies

reading a new book 

opening a package of new fabrics

sitting with a box of small pieces sorted by grand-daughter and finding this gorgeous piece of fabric  not sure if KF or PJ - Wanda you would know I'm sure

watching the birds come to attack the seed pods of the trees outside the window

and at last DH driving me down to the beach for a short walk along the sand at low tide yesterday.

Hopefully back to short spells at the machine in the next day or so and reading current blog posts tomorrow, I haven't a hope of catching up on all your posts from the last five weeks, hope you'll excuse me.

Happy Quilting


Monday, April 24, 2023

It's all in the planning

I haven't achieved a great deal in the past two weeks, cut all the HSTs for Tussie Mussie, the amount of these differed, a number were cut from one wof, more from two wof strips, then three strips wof.

Here I made use of the plate system for keeping things in order, used by quiltdivajulie, a great idea Julie!
The cutting took quite some time,  no die cutter used.

Just a few pieces on the wall  (not stitched) at the moment, other things seemed to hold me up!

I'm making an effort to tidy fabric, using large containers to hold the fabrics assigned to a few quilts on my list for this year and next. Cutting odd size scraps into 2 and1/2" and 1 and 1/2" squares for two projects and preparing strips for another two quilts I have in mind, all now neatly stacked and labelled. Tussie Mussie needs to be worked on quickly now, I had my pacemaker check last week and a referral was sent off three weeks ago for me to be called in for a replacement, probably within the next few weeks. As this procedure involves using a temporary pacing wire threaded in (I have no underlying rhythmn and rely totally on my pacemaker)  it's a little more complex, I may be taking it easy for a couple of weeks afterwards, no heavy lifting or reaching for fabrics and boxes.

You may remember my Dolly Mixtures quilt from a little while back

there were lots of sets  unused, they re-appeared during "the great tidy up" in one of the drawers and I probably have enough to make another small quilt.

I've been photographing in the garden, now suffering from the high winds and rain which do a great job of spreading rust spores throughout the plants. I planted three new canna lillies a little while ago, the seed pods of these plants have always fascinated me, I picked a few and photographed them on an old patterned saucer

just look at that lime green popping out.

We've been concerned for our daughter whilst she had four weeks in the UK and a week in Italy, she had missed one of her Covid booster shots. Arrived back on Wednesday, down with a sore throat and feeling pretty ill on Thursday, tested positive for Covid on Friday! She may have picked it up right before travelling home, but sitting on a 'plane for two 10 hour flights and an 8 hour lay-over in HongKong probably didn't help matters!

Dinner is calling me and then more sorting, hoping for quite a few more blocks of Tussie Mussie in the next post.


Saturday, April 8, 2023

One top finished, a new one started

Okay, I finished sewing up the Maggie Pearl top - hooray! A boo-boo with the blue block, second row down and second block in, this I  moved to a different position in the top and the more subdued blue took it's place, DH asked could he see how it was placed originally, yes he could but then I forgot to move it back again. After a tricky day I headed for the machine and stitched - only at the last strip did I realise what I had done. I wasn't about to begin unpicking all those seams so it's staying as is.

On to my next project, one I had marked in a Kaffe Fassett book just after Quilts in Italy became available in 2016. The colour in this quilt had me hooked, ideal to bring a breath of Spring into the bedroom when Autumn and Winter hits us, as we're now in Autumn  I had better get busy with Tussie Mussie.

Isn't she (looks like a she) a beauty! Apart from the required two Mad Plaid fabrics (one will have to be a substitute) the remainder are from stash, I love this one so much I have just gone totally with KF listed fabrics. Measures 80" x 80" and required 8 and 7/8" strips as the first step, I couldn't be fussed with this measurement so mine are cut just 8 and 1/2", it's not going to make much difference at all.

Some fabrics require just one strip cut, some two strips and a couple need three strips. 

One strip of each fabric:

Two strips:

Three strips:

I shall definitely be starching before cutting, they would stretch too easily without this. A special project is coming up end April beginning of May so TM needs to under the machine within a few days. Doesn't have to be all complete before my next quilt, I like to have two or three projects on the go (understatement here, it's usually more than that).

More re-arranging and tidying of my little studio has been keeping me busy, don't know why such a small room needs so much arranging to have a better working set up. It does have to be tidy though or everything quickly unravels.

Signing off with my favourite hibiscus and an almost matching sunrise yesterday

and the hibiscus

Before I do sign off,  am I the only quilter who has noticed a heck of a lot of bloggers that I've followed for some years are no longer around, they all seem to be on Instagram, or have just totally stopped writing a blog, such a shame.

Happy Easter to everyone.


Wednesday, March 22, 2023

Feeling the need for something relaxing

 Let me make a start on this post by showing a photo of a lovely cloud formation a few nights ago

the last rays of the sun were catching the edge of the cloud, I made out onto the drive to take a photograph
 and love looking at this,  it will be printed out and pinned  above my cutting table, perhaps it will cause the frustration I'm feeling presently to dissipate!

Maggie Pearl has been frustrating me no end. I have seen quite a few of these quilts and they were beautifully restrained with soft colours, yes, why not try passing on my usual colour choices and go restrained, I wish I hadn't followed that particular path. Blocks were made and up on the design wall they went, more blocks were made and even more blocks, I still wasn't too happy at all. 

Layout two days ago and excuse the uneven photograph, I was perched on a set of drawers all set up with a bed for Leila, also the blocks are just 'thrown' up there leading to some higher than others

I didn't feel this was a 'me' quilt in progress. What would happen if I changed things around and added bold and bright blocks in the style of the middle block third row down, here they are again

and together below with a few more blocks added into the design

The bottom row needs a change and  the middle block second row down needs to be lighter.

I would really appreciate your advice and feedback on these two settings please free to be brutally honest!! At this stage I dearly wish I had never started the darned thing. We all need to try something different now and again in our quilting whether it be choice of pattern or colour, just seems that I'm having difficulty with this.

I needed a break and Leila entertained me with a game of hide and seek, I suspect she is counting to ten trying to cover her eyes.

I'm off now to re-watch an episode of Broadchurch, then back here to check out for edits needed before publishing.


Tuesday, March 14, 2023

The last few blocks for Maggie Pearl - warning photo heavy

I'm calling time now on Maggie Pearl with all 20 blocks. I made a few more over the past week, some made it, some did not, but I'm happy with the end result. They're now down from the design wall and will be back up there again this week to get a good arrangement and I've no doubt I will take for ever trying to find one that pleases me!

I'll just show the new blocks. In my last post the one below originally had Spot in a soft turquoise, wasn't happy so made another using Paperweight in Sludge - one of my favourite KF fabrics.

Can you tell that I love greens?? This next one carries on the theme of green plus black - see the photo in my last post, bottom row block on LH side - I've decided to keep that one in the mix

Thanks to my grand-daughter and her good work with my scraps I found a piece of Lille - the lovely lime green ribbons on the fawn background - there was just enough to scrape together 14 squares.

Two more good finds in the block below, the black based fabric with exotic orchids and leaves plus a small piece of soft green with tiny flowers.

Almost finished ladies - Lotus Leaf plus a find of Tree Rings by Martha Negley, I used a little of this in a different colourway in one of the other blocks.

Another old pattern below is the rich red, purple and yellow fabric but I can't recall the name of this one, bet Wanda would know!

It has taken me far longer than intended to make these blocks, the reason being that I began overthinking
the combinations of fabric and now I have quite a few rejects, on the other hand I have two which were a huge no-no in the mix but I just love them to bits and will likely make another Maggie Pearl but in the style of the ones below but each block separated by a fine border.

Excuse the rough and ready set up of the blocks, just re-covering my design wall, dealing with all the different settings on my new iPhone plus needing a steadier hand to take the photo.

So next post, hopefully, a quilt top but until then I hope anyone in the way of the snow storms in the UK and the USA can keep safe, dry and warm.


Saturday, March 4, 2023

Short and sweet .......

We are still battling on here in New Zealand, not quite believing what has taken place, truly a disaster!

The human spirit is alive and well with everyone helping each other, support and the necessities of life are
being freely given. This is not a fix in a few months but a few years, quite a few years. 

I have been lucky enough to have a box of new fabric arrive at my door, a new mini hi-fi in my sewing room, I will now be able to play my CDs and listen to radio. Lots of folks will have lost these sort of items and I do have pangs of guilt at being one of the lucky ones, not to have lost anything. 

Beautiful Daisies

Shiraz in four different colourways

I have 16 blocks stitched up for Maggie Pearl and on the wall in sets of two each in similar colour.
More all ready for the making and then decisions can be made on which blocks will be kept in the mix and will not make it! The colour is slightly subdued in some of the fabrics, the opposite in others. The bottom left hand bottom block will likely not be included, doesn't seem to work for me. You need to enlarge to see the detail clearly.

Time is being spent working on settings on my iPhone camera side of things, it's pretty complex, all things relating to colour need more work. 

Not enough time has been given to quilting over the past week due to a cortisone shot in my right shoulder to help my torn rotator cuff and the left shoulder was the recipient of a B12 shot. Test shows too  low a level of this vitamin, the report suggests to consider Pernicious Anaemia - not a happy thought, I now need to have the shots every 3 months.

There was a stunning sunset a couple of days ago 

shame about the top of the tree! 

All for now, happy quilting and hopefully more quilting content next post.