Monday 27 November 2017

Little stitches and old papers ....

Sewing... is the craft of fastening or attaching
objects using stitches made with a needle and
thread.  Sewing is on of oldest of the textile
arts, arising in the Paleolithic era.  Before the
invention of spinning yarn or weaving fabrics.


In quilts where there a bits of others history and memories incorporated into such a wonderful piece
of stitchery art, all hand done and pieced together my mind strays to who owned it and stitched it.  Was there a sewing bee with ladies all sat around a scrubbed table all stitching a piece for a up and coming marriage or was it made with bits of someones old clothes and cloths for their bed to keep them warm and something to do of an evening.  I can but wonder and make up stories in my head.

A Quilt .... is a multi-layered textile, traditionally composed of three layers of fibre.  A woven cloth top, a layer of batting or wadding and woven back, the combined using the technique of quilting.  The process of sewing the three layers together.  The pattern of stitching can be the key decorative element if a single piece of fabric is used for the top but in many cases the top is pieced from a patchwork of smaller fabric pieces.  The pattern and colour of these pieces will be important to the design.

I must admit to being a collector of quilts and dream of a small room where they could all be folded in glass fronted cabinets to keep them from muncher's and dust.  Then swapping over the quilts on the beds for the seasons would be a little easier.  Adoring the old patchwork quilts and actually looking for a very old bear paw patchwork right now but believe I will find that in Canada which is our plan for next year to go and visit Prince Edward Island ... the home of Anne of Green Gables and QUILTS!! or so I hear.  If any of you are reading this in Canada or know anywhere I should be heading please let me know.

Now unusually I am going to show you something I bought from a lovely friend at The Vintage
Bazaar on Saturday.  It is a unfinished hexagon quilt.  The thing is most of the papers are from old solicitors papers and they are stunning.  There is extremely old fabrics incorporated within the piece that are around 1700's because of the dye in them.  This piece was one of the first things that my friend ever purchased at a antique market some years ago.  Elaine told me that it was a very cold and wet day she remembers, no one was really selling much and she was walking around.  Suddenly she saw colour from the corner of eye, under a table out of the rain.  She literally dived on this incredible piece.and purchased it and has treasured it since.  At times she was going to sell it because after all this was her business but could not bring herself to do so.  Then times she thought of cutting it up into smaller bits to sell but again she could not bring herself to do that either.

So now I have the honour of being the custodian of this very rare piece of unfinished work as it is because for Elaine, time to part with it.  Having got this my husband went straight out and found someone who is going to frame it for us ( paper side showing as you can see all the fabrics around each piece of old legal paper) and it will hang with some pride at the top of our stairs for all to gaze at.  I wanted to show you this piece of history today and of course when it is ready in the New Year in its frame I will let you see some photos.  We are going to have a coffee, Elaine and I and she is coming to see it in its frame and pride of place.  There will be a little ceremony for two friends, one who has entrusted the other with such an important and beautiful piece of quilted history.

For  today though it is  about collating the photos for the fairs and getting them ready for you to at least have a little look at the magical Christmas fairs that I attended .  It takes a huge amount of time so that is what I will do today so that I can write about The Country Brocante in Midhurst for you tomorrow, other wise the blog would not be out until lunchtime at the very least.  Lots of work goes into getting the photos and piecing them together.

I want to go on to tell you about it but it will have to wait until tomorrow I am afraid as it would be
unfair of me with a guest in the house and my husband home to work on a Sunday ...

A little basket of hand stitching and some bits of fabric that I am practising on with an idea sits by my chair, disrupted by mice over night normally but there it sits waiting for me to pick it up and do some slow little stitches.  That is what I can not wait to do later after sorting the photos.  

The weather has turned cold here and it is only in single figures, which means fires are alight and the lights and candles beckon me today.  I can sit and chat to my friend happily and then whilst she is doing something or when she reads we sit quietly and happily in each others company and we are smiling as we are pleased to be in the same country together, especially this time of year.

Well that is it for today I hope you all have a wonderful day and keep warm, make a warm drink and light some candles if you are at home, even doing housework it really does make a cheery atmosphere.

Happy Stitching! XX


  1. Amazing quilt. Will be great to see it framed. X

    1. It is Dawn and very humbled that Elaine was happy that it has gone to another forever home.

      Sarah xxx

  2. Ooooh, all those beautiful hexagons.

    Its quite cold here too

    Julie xxxxxx

    1. Hello Julie

      It really is a beauty! I am so very lucky.

      It is cold and now there is rain, rather a drab day here I am afraid, still candles and fires here to cheer the mood.

      Sarah xxxxxx