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surfacing briefly

13 May

I haven’t done any more work on Youngest Uncle’s fingerless gloves. But I have spent a couple of days making  about three dozen lavender bags. I can tell you that’s quite a lot of work and although they didn’t really take two days, they did take a lot of hours. Because I was making a lot, I did it production-line style. I cut out squares from scraps of fabric to make three different sizes, then pinned them all before I so much as thought about what thread was in the bobbin.

Fifteen, those I made with hanging ribbons (a few long ribbons but mostly short), were large enough to be easy work: two 7 cm squares seamed on three sides, turned through, filled with my lavender mix then stitched across to make a pyramid and trimmed with pinking shears unless I’d used a piece of fabric with a selvedge, in which case I simply left the edge as it was. I packed up a few of those to give to Nonna with a bunch of chrysanthemums for her Mother’s Day present.

The others were smaller. Half a dozen or so I cut at a starting size of 6 cm square. That’s not too difficult to turn through and fill. The majority, however, were small. They started as 5 cm squares and once sewn, turning them through was just drudgery. I managed it with assistance from the post of my darning mushroom, but it was time consuming. I like the look of the results and it’s nice to have a good supply of them to hand for putting in with handmade fibre gifts but I won’t be hurrying to make more of those. You might ask why I made any that size. Quite simply, that was all I could cut from a significant number of the fabric scraps I used.

I’m still using Great Aunt’s scraps but they are by now mostly fairly small. All the same, they’re recognisable. I was struck by how spoilt we’d been as children, though I don’t suppose we realised it at the time. The First Communion dresses and Confirmation dresses that Great Aunt made were all white. No surprises there. What I had probably not appreciated was how cleverly she’d chosen fabrics with interesting textures: spotted voile, waffle-patterned voile, a waffle-style heavier cotton and a rather lovely linen-weave cotton. I’ve used scraps from all of them to make lavender bags. Great Aunt’s memory lives on.

And how have I been going with the Me-Made-May stuff, limited to accessories such as scarves and the like? Yes, I’ve managed it, but what it’s served to highlight is that I really do need some new clothes! Today, being Mother’s Day, I was for a while wearing a made-for-me-by-my-Mother shawl; but it was too awkward to work in so I swapped it for a woollen jumper I knitted a long time ago and which is now too small but well, you know, when it’s Sunday and it’s cold and you’re at home and nobody cares what you look like? Yeah, that’s when the old stuff really comes into its own. I’ll deconstruct my Me-Made-May in a later post. In the meanwhile, I’m about to start lining up Boy’s grey sweatshirt for the next lot of sewing.

I hope you’ve had a pleasant weekend and that you, too, have been able to bowl over a goodly amount of crafting. It’s such a great feeling, isn’t it?

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