Saturday, June 11, 2011

quilt, guilt and sturdily built

Yep, I worked a bit hard on that title and it's all the worse for it.
I have been sewing a couple of things for myself, but I need to rope someone else in as photographer so no posts on those yet.

So, awkward rhyme number one. Quilt.
How gorgeous are those raindrops?
Progress on quilt-for-Charlie. I bought three prints from the Tula Pink 'Prince Charming' line, because Charlie is a big fan of frogs. And the colour green. I had this beige-ish linen, with small side stripes, in my stash. I thought it worked well for a 'solid' component, but it was all looking a bit pallid.
I was also feeling some guilt (ooh yeah, rhyme #2) because I had bought all these fabrics online from non-Australian sources. I am terribly lucky to have a fabric shop just around the corner from my house. It doesn't stock everything I want; in fact nothing I salivate over such as Anna Maria Horner, Heather Ross, Nani Iro, or eco-friendly stuff I'd love like organic cottons or bamboo. However, it does have plenty of great stuff. If I want it to still be there in one year, five years, ten years... I really should buy more of my fabric there.
Case in point: my regular dealer for hits of quality chenille? Closing down! Apparently the owner has been trying to sell the business for some time without success. Yikes! Anyone know of another Australian source of good chenille?
So anyway. Off I trotted around the corner today and bought two metres of lovely chocolate brown linen to throw into this quilting mix.
The plan is, as you kind of see here, strips of random slices of the three prints, interspersed with strips of the plain colours. Nothing too ordered, even or pattern-like, however a lot simpler than my first quilt.

Third rhyme. This is the sturdily built Singer 201K.
crappish pic, but if I'm ever to post this, it will have to do for now!
It was my Mum's first sewing machine.
A straight-stitcher, built in 1952. My Mum's parents purchased it for her second-hand, since these things apparently cost a bomb when new - something like half a year's average salary. They had it converted for her from knee-lever to foot-pedal operation.
It has sat unused for probably 45 years. I dusted it down, and oiled it up. After I realised the needle goes in sideways (so you thread it left-to-right not back-to-front), it was off and running; purring, in fact. The quietest machine I've ever used.
Here's a closer look at another sewing hand-me-down. This fabulous fake woodgrain sewing box was my Grandma's. It holds heaps but is always a mess and overflowing. Just a little insight here into my sewing space... which is our, ahem, dining table. I could probably count the number of times it has been used for 'dining' on one hand. Jigsaw in background has been there for weeks and is at the difficult-blocks-of-sky stage so the boys have lost interest. It's taking up good sewing space there.

Part of me would love to have a dedicated sewing room. Everything ordered, stored, pretty. But a lot of me likes it just like this: my sewing chaos, in the midst of all the regular family chaos.

- Jane x


  1. Lucky your machine is quiet! I used to sew on the dining table but got kicked out because my machine was too noisy. I'm not complaining - now I have my very own room for sewing.

  2. Love that sewing box. So cute.

  3. How amazing that you have your mom's machine and that it still works. What a gift!
    And I love the fabric that you're using for the quilt! It's going to look amazing.
    And the title...amazing!! :)

  4. I'm drooling over your awesome vintage machine!! Beautiful! And you know I sew in the middle of everything too, and generally prefer that. The quilt looks gorgeous too! I am blessed with really great local independent fabric shops - three of them in my general area (near home or work). But I constantly worry for them, because we have lost one really great store in the past couple years.


Hey, I would really love to know what you think. Go on!

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