We’re both still a bit on the snuffly side so ended up having a somewhat slower weekend than what we had intended (plans for a massive garden attack sort of disappeared…partly because we both felt a bit poorly, but also the sun was out and it was just so nice and warm that I really just wanted to sit out in the sunshine with a pot of tea, and do some slow sewing ….and entertain Bob next door in the bargain, rather than do anything too strenuous)…so this is more of a catch up of the last week or so…..
After making the saffron and sourdough buns the other week (hot cross buns for the hippest hipsters) I thought I’d try using milk in the next loaf. I also found up a box of spelt flour we’d ordered late autumn so I used a 50/50 mix of spelt and regular bread flour and a 75/25 mix of warm milk and water. The bread was okay (as anyone who reads my blog knows I am no David Bailey with a camera so apologies for the slightly whoozie picture above…it was the best of the bunch…….) but I think it seemed a bit on the heavy side, though that may have been because it didn’t have enough proving time before it went in the oven. However it smelt lovely being toasted and my boyfriend said it tasted nice so I guess that is what counts.
One quilt has been quilted, and I’m about half way through quilting the second one….as I hand quilt it does take a bit longer (okay it takes a couple of days to quilt one baby sized quilt) …but I always think the time spent is well worth the nice results it gives. Before I start quilting I like to thread up a whole load of small quilting needles with thread so they are all ready to go. I like to thread about a dozen needles, more than that and the thread gets too messy. Often when I am quilting a fan shape then I have 5 or 6 needles all on the go in the quilting hoop at one time, it sounds a bit confusing and you’d think the thread would tangle but it doesn’t and I find it just makes quilting the curves a bit easier.
After a day of quilting my fingertips are a bit tender feeling, I wear a thimble but only the one (I’ve seen quilters wearing three before but that’s too much for me, I’ve tried it and I feel all fingers, thimbles and thumbs) …along with feeling sore and tender, my finger tips get quite warm and sensitive. Ages and ages ago I read of something ballerinas are supposed to do to to make their feet feel better after hours and hours of dancing and twirling…they soak their feet in a bowl of cold tea….(I don’t know any ballerinas to ask so this may not be true but I like to think Darcey Bussell sticks the kettle on for a brew for her toes when she gets in) when I’ve made a pot of tea I put the teabags to one side then at the end of the day I make a bowl of tea, by pouring a kettle over the old tea bags…I let it sit to cool down and then rest my hands in the tea infusion…..it’s something I find quite nice and relaxing and after 10 minutes my finger tips feel a lot more comfortable.
We did do a bit of weeding and trimming in the garden Saturday afternoon, we have a little ornamental cherry tree in the middle of our garden and it’s branches had started trailing across the whole garden and were getting a bit tangled so we pruned those back a smidge and I decided to save some of the flowering tips as the blossom was such a pretty colour, it also smelt really heady. They’ve already faded and they have just the ghost of their perfume left…but I still think they look nice on the table.
At the start of last week I had to pop into the city and after doing in the city chores, had a wander round some of my favourite antiquey/junk shops…..I found a big bag of vintage threads and silks for the grand sum of £1.50…… and have already been using them when I’ve been re-sewing a couple of block for “dear ethel”…..these were from the haberdashery stall in The St. Gregory’s Centre in Norwich, it’s on Pottergate and is very near to Norfolk Yarn and Head in The Clouds. The haberdashery stall is owned by a lady called Jenny, and I’ve been buying threads, tapestry yarn and haberdashery items from her now for a few years…the quality of her things is always really nice.
The other week I bought one of these fat reels of vintage thread from her and then I went in on Friday I noticed that she had another one for sale so I figured I would give it a good home…the thread is cotton, and is nice and strong. I use quite a lot of pink and brown thread when I am sewing my patchwork. I liked how one reel still has the old wrapper on it. The type used is so neat and no nonsense looking.
When I was enjoying the sunshine on Saturday afternoon, Bob from next door came round to say “how do” and stretched himself out a little distance from me….while I wasn’t looking he wriggled closer and closer and then there was a flash of black and white, and a furry little paw fished out a reel of thread from my sewing basket…I think it was a bit heavier then he expected as it plonked out and he ran off in a bit of a scare…..I think Bernard is teaching him bad habits, when I looked under the sofa yesterday after loosing a big reel of quilting cotton I found not only the missing quilting thread but also a couple of skeins of tapestry wool and two smaller reels of Sylko cotton!