A sunny day out in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

It’s 7.30am, dark grey clouds are scudding across a light grey sky, trees are whipping about in the wind – it’s October, what else would we expect? In complete contrast, yesterday was one of those special, don’t-waste-a-moment-of-the-warm sunshine days that are such a treat this time of year. My lovely parents chose to make the most of the day by taking a trip to the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. They kindly invited me to join them, I said ‘Yes! Please!’

Palm House, Kew by Allison Reid
Preparing to plant Spring bulbs in the flower beds in front of the Palm House, Kew

Read moreA sunny day out in the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

The heart – getting perspective

Saturday Quilting Bring & Share – missed the date AGAIN! The draft is here in my laptop and I will add to it through the week as I endeavour to catch up on emails. I have to take a digression from patchwork and quilting in this post as I need to share the following before returning to my more regular subject.

So last week was filled with preparing my sewing room for Hampshire Open Studios.

Sewing Room ready for HOS by Allison Reid

All that activity was put into perspective by the failing health of a 90 year old friend.ย 

Read moreThe heart – getting perspective

‘Into the Woods’ – a table runner in the making

Close up 'Into the Woods' by New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting

Yesterday I posted some fabric options for the sashing and borders of my latest design, a table runner called ‘Into the Woods’. I increased my options by visitingย Purple Stitches (how great is it to have a local quilt store?) and bought a half metre of an Alison Glass medium value, yellow/green fabric.

 

Today I woke early and made the most of the time before heading to Church to piece together the table runner top. I’m pleased with how the colour of the sashing draws attention to the little golden yellow flowers printed on the light background fabric. The crazy patchwork panels along the top of the runner are supposed to represent distant trees, mountains and sky while the panels along the bottom represent the woodland floor (that’s the nearest I’ll ever get to be an artist!).

Close up 'Into the Woods' by New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting

After stitching together ‘Into the Woods’ first thing this morning it seemed very fitting that our Church service opened with the hymn ‘How Great Thou Art’ by Stuart K Hine which includes the verse:

‘When through the woods and forest glades I wander

And hear the birds sing sweetly in the trees;

When I look down from lofty mountain grandeur,

And hear the brook, and feel the gentle breeze;

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God to Thee,

How great Thou art! How great Thou art!

Then sings my soul, my Saviour God, to Thee,

How great Thou art! How great Thou art!

I hope you have had an enjoyable weekend with opportunities to stop in ‘awesome wonder’, taking in the wonderful creation around us. Hine’s hymn reminds Christians to thank God for His Creation – rather than idolizing the creation itself – most especially for the gift of His Son, Our Saviour, Jesus.

Allison

Saturday Quilting Bring & Share (20)

Welcome to Saturday Quilting Bring and Share; a virtual sewing day, an opportunity to bring along the project(s) you are working on and share in quilty conversations via links to the latest social media posts that have caught our attention over the past week. If you have anything to bring or share do make use of the comments section at the end of this page.
Borders attached - New Every Morning Patchwork & Quilting
I am beginning to feel like a stuck record (do you remember those days when the record player stylus would stick in a scratch on a record?) as my project for this weekend is yet again quilting ‘Carrie Nation Variation’! I’m not one for bad language but this quilt could be called a few other things… Nevermind, I’m on a fantastic learning curve as I stitch out all these feathers ๐Ÿ™‚ and move onto orange peel designs in the four patch squares.
As this particular project is stretching out over many weeks I’ve been thinking about the popular notions of ‘living in the moment’ and ‘being mindful’. I’m trying to concentrate on this ‘now’ project and not let myself be distracted by other projects. However, I don’t think it’s in our nature to NOT be looking ahead and planning. I find looking ahead is a means of maintaining hope. In quilting terms my hope lies in this bundle of fabrics: – I’m looking forward to embarking on a new project ๐Ÿ™‚ – and this is seeing me through the ‘now’ project which could otherwise become overwhelming.

I’m looking forward to embarking on a new project ๐Ÿ™‚ – and this is seeing me through the ‘now’ project which could otherwise become overwhelming. These fat quarters are a selection from Purple Stitches and are to be the basis of the block of the month sampler quilt I’ll be making in the Quilt Club Viv is hosting at the shop. I’m keeping this collection of fabric goodness on my desk in full view of my sewing table as a ray of hope, the promise of a future beyond the now project!
A few thoughts on HOPE:
Of course, my quilty hopes could be dashed – there’s no guarantee my ability to sew won’t be cut short by some illness or accident or my house and its contents destroyed in a gas explosion or fall into a huge sink hole… I’m thankful as a Christian I have a sure hope: I’m not dependent on wishful thinking, living in the strength of my own plans and abilities or living in constant fear of the future. Christians can live in the now with all of it’s uncertainties, unfulfilled human plans and failures, knowing we have a sure and certain hope in an eternal future. There’s no promise of a trouble-free life now but there is a guarantee of life in the new heaven and new earth according to God’s perfect plan and lasting promises. It saddens me when people put their hope in God’s creation – the universe, angels etc or in flawed humanity (when has any person of influence ever acted for the good of all people and not been corrupted in some way by the power they wield?) – and not in the Creator Himself. Putting hope in the redemptive power of Jesus gives complete security, a certain hope. Believing or trusting in the natural goodness of humans, the cosmic power of the Universe, ‘Mother Earth’, or our own abilities and self-sufficiency etc can only lead to disappoints and failures at best, eternal darkness at worst. I’d strongly recommend reading a Gospel – or all four – to discover what Jesus said and demonstrated about himself, the future and where we should and shouldn’t place our hope.
There we are, that’s my thought for the week! Funny how a quilty conversation can switch into a soul-search…
Here are the quilty news items and conversations that have caught my attention this week:
Soma at Whims and Fancies is reintroducing her Wandering Camera link up. It’s a lovely opportunity to stretch photography skills and share your favourites on the last Thursday of every month.
Leanne has been making ‘fidget blankets’ for special needs children. I’ve seen similar being made for people with dementia. Such a simple but effective calming tool to help people (young and old) keep fidgety fingers and minds occupied.
I don’t know how Rachel finds the time or inspiration to make a quilt ‘on a whim’ but she frequently does. I really like this giant star made from linen fabrics (Rachel used half inch seams to increase durability with this loose-weave fabric).
Yvonne and Cheryl are hosting the ‘Tips and Tutorials Festival’. If you like reading tutorials via blog posts or, indeed, if you like sharing your ‘how to’s’ on line then this promises to be great fun. The Festival runs from 11th to 15th June, there are four categories to explore/enter and we can vote for our favourite tutorials in each category.
Incidentally, I recently created the ‘Patchwork Tips and Tales‘ group on my Facebook page. You are welcome to join and we’d love to have you share any tips or advice you have to help us with our patchwork quilting.
There are so many talented patchwork pattern writers out there. A newly released pattern called ‘Making Waves’ by Kirsty of Bonjour Quilts caught my eye this week. If you have a fat eighth fabric bundle in your stash this pattern could be the perfect reason to untie the ribbon and get making!
I’d recommend following Jessica Skultety at Quilty Habit anytime; if you are not already then now is a great time to click on over and press the follow button ๐Ÿ™‚ Jessica had a publishing company pull out of a book deal ๐Ÿ™ Undaunted she is sharing the quilts in a ‘Quilting Modern Quilts’ series on her blog over the Summer. I am so looking forward to reading her stories behind the quilts and her explanations of the quilting designs she chose to use on each one. Oh! And while you are clicking to follow her blog don’t forget to click to follow her bi-weekly ‘Wonky Press’ newsletter too!
Happy stitching!
Allison