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Winter in the Sunflower Creative Cabin…

It’s Friday; not exactly cold but there lingers the sort of wintry mist that can dampen the spirits and seep into your soul as the afternoon creeps into night and the light falls…
So I have drawn the curtains, my patchwork pretties, whacked up the heating and made a fine brew of coffee, and so the mood lifts…
I’ve taken some photographs of things I’ve been making as Christmas treats, either to sell on my Sunflower Fabrics website, or to give as gifts to my loved ones…
When I first opened my shop, twenty odd years ago, one of the books that I sold and loved so well was “Little Quilts All Through The House”, and I still have it and love it, and I revisit it from time to time to make the traditional small items inside, with delightfully simple variations on old themes such as log cabin, sawtooth stars, simple applique…Their charm never fades for me nor seems to date.

I’ll always be grateful to Alice Berg, Mary Ellen Von Holt, and Sylvia Johnson for creating this much-treasured book…

Here is a little bear straight from the pattern in the book, just eight little shapes, needing only tiny wee scraps to complete – the bear fits onto a 5.5 inch block, just delightful isn’t she? I chose soft shot cotton for the bear herself, a tiny fragment of Liberty “Wiltshire” Tana Lawn for her frock, and some tiny pink check for the waistcoat. All fused down with Bondaweb, then blanket stitched on my sewing machine. I machine quilted
the cream background with vermicelli, with the feed dogs down, which was so quick and ideal for a tiny project like this.
I’ve had the rustic-style hanger and the buttons for years; it’s so good to finally use these little treats I’ve hoarded for so long!
I finished her face with two French knots for eyes and another for a nose, and a couple of stitches for an “up at the corners” sort of mouth – happy! The final touch was two rosy cheeks, done with my water-soluble Inktense water soluble blocks, which was then set with a hot iron.

I had several happy hours cutting and bonding the shapes for six more bears to give as gifts for little friends, then sewing them, and I was reminded of Fuzzy Felt, which I always wanted as a child – but never got (sniff snivel sniff!) and what was so enjoyable was just choosing the fabrics for the outfits, putting the colours and patterns together, selecting the threads. Such a lovely thing to do.
Then I thought perhaps I should have a go at drawing a little bear of my own, make these bears a little cousin, and so I did and here she is…

She has a fat little face and not symmetrical, then again, neither’s mine! But doesn’t she look chic?! The joy of using up some buttons and thinning out The Collection, (note to self, must make a will, time’s marching on).

I’ve really gone to town with the finishing of this little bag, cross-hatching the bear panel by hand, and fastening the top-stitched handles on with buttons. They don’t match, that’s the look I wanted. There was a disaster when I lost the tiny mustard button at her collar; Ruth saved the day by delving into the pot and finding another, the only other. What luck. No other colour would have done so well. The bag is lined and hand stitched closed on the inside…

And so that was my happy work on Thursday and Friday, with some more little patchwork pincushions made from orphan blocks from older projects, too pretty to throw away…
The day’s wearing out like me, sigh…I think Clumper is on his way home from the station now, on his bike bless him in the dark, and if he knows what’s good for him, there’d best be two bottles of summink nice chinking in his rucksack! If you read this from the other side of the world and think “what appalling grammar” wait up, I am conveying some colloquialisms for you, adding verbal colour from the shire of Bedford!

Have a great weekend, don’t forget to leave me a message, on here rather than Facebook please!

Comments 14

  1. Love your bear and ramblings – ramblings in the nicest sense of the word!. And the blog works beautifully now – so I think there should be a glass from those two bottles in that rucksack for your son.
    Do hope you let Ruth out from the cabin every now and then!
    Festive greetings from Norfolk
    x

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      Morning Dear Emma, what a learning curve it’s all been, it is working well and I’m enjoying it. I just don’t know why the website isn’t selling anything, but Ill persevere! Pleased you like the writing as well. Merry Christmas to you and yours xxx

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  2. The little girly bear is so delicious, all rumbly bumbly and huggable! I look forward to seeing many of her kith and kin in the future!

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      What a great time we had making stuff! Making some more things this afternoon…Loving it and the chores must wait…

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      Thank you Helen, I was so pleased with her myself, wanting to make more! And I’ve cut up a vintage (shot to pieces) embroidered tablecloth and fussy cut it to get the flowers on the dress! OH the joy of it! I know I’m very silly, but hey ho…

  3. They’re all just lovely Maggie and a good couple of days of productivity! I think I’ve got the book you mentioned and yes I loved it too all those years ago. I must dig it out! Xx

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      Wish you lived nearer Linda, you could come and play! I am working on more bears, Lord knows what I’ll be doing with them, but they’re so fanciful and nice. Nothing wrong with pretty and nice is there, though it’s not terribly trendy! Who cares…I need to make some boys now, little check shirts and denim dungarees? x Hope your Christmas is full of love and family get togethers…xxx

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