Monday, January 23, 2012

Seams to me...

If one is to begin one blog, one might as well start two.  I am SUCH a Gemini!  Actually, the other blog is about journeys, this is about being a journeyman.  I taught most of what I know about handwork, needle crafts and textile arts to myself out of need and interest.  It came in handy to put bread on the table as life went on.  I even had my own atelier: JanaLymited.
When we moved to this old house 17 years ago.  I had a mobile sewing space: first, in the bedroom, then. the living room , and, the dining our slow renovation projects required.  My patience was sorely taxed as I had to recreate the creative environment every single time I wanted to build something.
But!! I now am pleased to announce that MY very own made to measure creative space is launched out in the annex.  There are a few sharp corners to smooth, but by gum, I am really truly pleased with the hard work and effort Himself devoted to the room ( and he is possibly even more delighted to hear me happily working rather than crabbing about having no place of my own.)

The pile of projects got really out of hand over the last ten years with this and that distraction and disaster.  One 25 year project was THE TWELVE BEARS OF CHRISTMAS.  Back in the Midwest, I had a housemate; another single parent to pool our meagre resources.  One thing we did together was counted crossstitch;  it turns out she was a far more patient needlewoman than I. Her masterpiece work was a set of 12 bears in the days of Christmas theme.  Those bears immigrated to the Netherlands with me and languished in the to do pile for moons.  Every so ofetn I would find a fabric for the project, and guiltily stash it together with the bears for the right day.

The day finally came this last October.  I thought.  An  urgent wedding dress build, and the Dutch holiday giving days got in the way, but I did prevail.  So 2 weeks before Christmas, off went the box.  Two weeks after Christmas it was delivered (to my permanent dismay).  But the Bears are back with their creator and she is delighted. A finished project!!  Wonders never cease...
I thought it was quite handsome in spite of some little flaws.

a partridge

2 turtle doves

3 French hens

4 calling birds ( remind me to tell you about the original words!!)


6 geese

7 swans
8 milkmaids
9 ladies
10 lords
11 pipers
12 drummers
Here is the completed front, a mix of old fashioned fabric and modern. It was a challenge!
And purely by kismet, I found the backing fabric in the 12 days theme.
 Then had to find  fabrics to meld the colors with the front.
The design became a duvet- you can see the opening at the bottom.