Morning shadows and patchwork piecing…………….

re-making a pin wheel block


The other weekend I had a bit of a tidy up in my studio/work room and sorted through the 120 some blocks I’d sewn for my “dear ethel” quilt……as I looked through them there were a few that I felt weren’t quite right…..a couple were a bit too brash and bold, and a couple I was no longer happy with the fabric choices I’d made….I know I could have just left them be…but this quilt is intended as something special for me and I know what I’m like, I’ll be in bed and won’t see all the blocks that are perfect and beautiful and which make me happy….I’ll just see those blocks that don’t sit right…even if I try to hide them in corners or edges I’ll know they are there, so decided to put to one side the blocks I wasn’t liking (they can be made into pot holders to use near the stove) and made a list of what needed re-sewing…..


piecing patchwork to re-sew a pin wheel block


The first block I’ve sewn is this little pinwheel…I love the bright combination of orange and pink, but I wasn’t careful enough when I cut out the gingham, the pattern doesn’t lay true across the block…I’m thinking to make the quilt a bit bigger than I had first intended (so I think I need to make another 24 blocks on top of the half a dozen or so I’m re-sewing) so will use the pink/orange combination again, maybe use a different pink rather than the gingham…..

For the new block I’ve used a couple of the fabrics I bought recently for the twins quilts….the tiny tulip fabric is so delicate, and I particularly liked how it combined with the more robust orange bow-tie print.


early morning shadows


Now we have the lovely light mornings, I’ve set my alarm a little bit earlier so I can get up and enjoy the soft light that floods my work room this time of year…..early mornings are my favourite time, the house is quiet and not yet woken, if Bernard is on the table there is the gentle sighing and soft snore of him sleeping…shadows cover my table and as the sun comes up they move across my work…..


re-sewing a pinwheel block for my dear ethel quilt


Later on I’ll put on some music, or listen to the wireless but before anyone else stirs and gets out of bed I prefer the quiet….I open a window and my room is filled with the early morning call and sing song of the birds in the garden… the distance there is the low rumble of a train……the gentle sighing as the day itself seems to wake up and stretch into being…….

This is the time I try to use for sewing for myself, no commissions, no sewing for shops or craft fairs, but simply sewing for myself whether it’s patchwork blocks for “dear ethel” or darning socks…..a cup of tea near my elbow and I’m eased into the day.


re-sewn pinwheel block


The new block is much softer in colour than the one it’s replacing but it doesn’t jar and it sits in well with the other blocks sewn…..a couple of the blocks I’m re-sewing I’ve un-picked because I liked one of the fabrics used in the block and didn’t have enough left to re-make again….maybe I’m being a bit precious but I want this quilt to be just right so am happy to spend the time it needs, unpicking, re-cutting, hand sewing……. slow stitching indeed.


2 thoughts on “Morning shadows and patchwork piecing…………….

    1. It’s one of the few downsides to having a job that involves doing something I love….it’s really easy to allow “work” sewing to creep past five o’clock and to take over weekends, especially when you are in the middle of a tricky bit or a piece that only needs a little more to finish…with “dear ethel” I knew it wasn’t going to be made in a weekend, so am happy to work on it in odd moments, when and where I can find them xx

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