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March 2024


I need to keep my stitching simple at the moment.  ( I am soooo frustrated that my recovery is taking sooo long!!!) And life has just taken over.  My husband had to fly interstate for a funeral, and although I couldn't travel with him, (I'm not allowed to fly for some time yet) I am the designated driver to and from the airport.  All this 'other stuff' gets in the way of my stitching. (Then I was laid low again and he had to get to the airport himself.)

So, these are simple.

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I am asked "will you make me one" all the time.  The assembly takes longer than the stitching!

I have cut out lots of cosy bowl holders to stitch in my spare moments

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and I am designing another tea cosy.  My challenge here is I can only use wool from my stash, so lots of swatching.

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And I'm not really pleased with my last envelope bag so here comes another.


A change in the weather

I think the weather might be changing!  It is still raining and humid but last night I put a light cover on the bed.  Well it is nearly the end of March so I suppose it was bound to happen.

This got me thinking about changing over my wardrobe.  I had a look in some shops but I must have missed that all the prices have sky rocketed!  Time to start some dressmaking.  I don't need a lot, just 2 or 3 dresses and I have turned to one of my favourite designers for inspiration.  Gudren Sjodon.

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Her style is very relaxed, which suits my lifestyle.  I no longer need business suits or fancy clothes to wear when I go out.  But I would like some of these petticoats.

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Dead simple to make but finding that lace for the bottom is not going to be easy.  At one time there were fabric shops in every suburb but now I can only think of 4 or 5 in the whole of Brisbane! (Not counting Spotlight and Lincraft.)  I like the way she layers her clothes, great for our weather.

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I won't find the colours but then I have a draw full of fabric dye so that is no problem.  I have a whole bolt of pain cotton fabric I just have to source this lace.

Still struggling with the computer

One step forward, two back.  That seems to be how my life goes at the moment.  But, I keep trying, not always successfully, or so it seems at the moment.  I am not receiving the comments to my email, but they do show up in the Typepad comments and there was an interesting reference to a tutorial on the "Elefantz" blog regarding another tutorial for the envelope bag from Alison.

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What is the saying? "A picture is worth a thousand words."  This is a nice blog with lots of interesting articles.)

There are just so many variations on this basic design.  I have another one on the go using left over strips that I cut for the binding on my 'Chicken Quilt'.  When I started the quilting I realised that it would work well with strip quilting as well for the construction. You know I did all that practice for my walking foot quilting and now can't remember any of it!!

But this is coming along nicely.

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I don't think I will decorate the seams but I need tassels.  I bet I have used all my purple threads!


I have finally finished another Tea Cosie.

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I still have another two to go so am looking for another pattern.

I have also started a new series of embroidered necklaces .

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These are super hard to put together because the fittings are so small but they look lovely when finished.

And I keep plugging away at my botanical illustration.

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Some more on those "Envelope Bags"

As I embark on the third of my envelope bags I thought I would do a bit of research about them.  I first saw them in India when I travelling but also remembered I had seen them years ago in Afganistan, (back before the wars when you could catch a bus in Rome that took you to India.  The young men who ran the bus then started Flightcentre.) And I seem to remember seeing some on display at the V&A.

I found this article in Piecework Magazine  about dowry bags.  There are some interesting stitches used and I love the tassels.

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And then there was a "Dowry Purse".

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And there are any number on the auction sites.

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All these images come from the Indian region and I could find nothing much from Western culture but perhaps the "clutch purse" is a descendant of this original design?

Then to top it off I found some examples from Japan.  (They look rather modern to me.)

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Is this an omen?

The background to my day is the sound of bird song.  From first light to sunset.  I have birdbaths positioned around my garden to invite them in and they normally come in droves.

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But there has been a change.

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At first I thought that it was just the weather, which has been constantly hot, humid and wet.  (My Bouganvillia has stopped flowering because there has been too much rain.)  Then I thought it might be the high winds that almost knock you off your feet.

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But then I noticed that all the lorikeets have disappeared.  There is not one to be seen. Normally they drive me crazy with their screaming, or you risk being crashed into as they fly around at breakneck speed.  In all my years they have been a constant and now there are non.  I went to the RSPCA website to find some information and found that there is a widespread disease attacking these birds.


There is also a change in the migration of fish  through the bay.  This might be caused by the run-off from water running into the bay.  The water has lots of soil in it which will effect the oxygen content.  I know there are far more sharks around.

Climate change is now taking a toll on our birds and fish.  We are higher up the food chain but it is heading our way.

Computer problems

I am having trouble switching over from my old desk-top computer to my new Laptop.  In fact I'm trying to work between the two at the moment and my google Email account is giving me grief, as is my Apple Email and nearly every other thing on the computers.  Added to this is the fact that I am not thinking straight or logically which is just complicating everything.

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I'm sorry if I haven't replied to your comments.  I know the comments are there but I just can't find them.  I will work this out, eventually!!

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I find that my cancer treatment has had lots of unwanted side effects.  My slow brain and the pain in my hands and feet being the worst.  So, I just do what I can do.  I'm not happy with it but I can't change things.  Mr Doctor says it may improve with times, I can only hope.

So I doggardly keep sewing, just a bit everyday and I have now finished my second roll.

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I could have choosen something easier than gold thread but I wouldn't have got the same effect.

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Sewing with that thread on the machine was even worse than sewing with a needle, so I settled for a rayon thread for the edge.

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I did however manage a neat ladder stitch when I  joined the sides.

I want to make a smaller version in floral fabric to hold my sewing kit.