Tuesday 6 January 2009

Goodbye, holidays, welcome normal life

Finally I managed to take a picture of one of our talented acrobat visitors at the birds' feeding place. The squirrels usually take a leap from the branch, but one even experimented gliding down the wire where the box is hanging. It reminded me of one of my favourite Little Golden Books, the one with five brave fire soldiers, only the squirrel slided with his head first! The smallest squirrel manages to sit on the edge by the seeds, but this position is the only alternative for the grown-up squirrels. I wonder how they manage to swallow anything?

The lovely fabric roll I posted about in my previous post made me think of my one and only genuine Liberty dress, and why I didn't have any rest bits of the fabric to use for the hexagons in the Grandmother's Garden quilt I made for my daughter. Many, many years ago I made a trip to London, had afternoon tea at the Ritz and went shopping at Liberty's. I bought myself a floral print fabric (who could have guessed?) for a nice summer dress. My mother was going to sew it, because at that time I hadn't started sewing yet. She is a special kind of woman, mother of six, started her family during the war and was always used to making the most of what she had available. And, also a great fan of jigsaw puzzles. These qualities were the reason why instead of a little dress, we chose a pattern for a wraparound skirt and a blouse. That kind of a skirt uses a huge amount of fabric. I had bought fabric for a simple dress only. My mother made what we planned, even when it took some planning, some extra seams and puzzle skills:

This is the facing of the blouse's hem. Notice all the little stamp-sized bits it is made of.

This is the other side, with a smart double sideseam solution and some more patchwork facing. The one sleeve also had two seams to make the correct width, and the under collar was made of 6 pieces of fabric. No rest bits this time for quilting! It was a lovely outfit, and I used to wear it a lot. I have kept it all these years so I can someday use the fabric for a quilt.

Today is Epiphany, the day when traditionally the Christmas tree will be undressed and taken out. My amaryllis is still in bloom, the tangerines are out and the Christmas tablecloth has already been washed to be stored for next Christmas. After the tree is gone I will still leave some of the decorations in place. The tree is in good shape still, I have been giving it water almost every day, but I'm glad to have the dining table in its own place again so my ironing will be easier. Holidays are great, but normal life is easier, if you ask for my opinion. I'm glad to be back to normal everyday life again. (It means I can spread my sewing things in the living room, where they don't belong but where they live, with me.)


  1. Hello my dear friend,We too have squirrels everywhere and I love to watch them. We took down the Christmas tree the other day and was able to move the living room back the way is was made to be. I love the holidays but seems we turn everything upside down in our homes, are we suppose to do that?I drag my sewing all over and then i have lots to clean up but they are fun messes. Have a beautiful week. Love and hugs, Marie

  2. Hej och God fortsättning på 2009, nu är livet snart tillbaka eller hur?
    HOppas att du får ett fantastiskt 2009!!

  3. We already took the Christmal tree away and all the decoration, life is now back to normal! Your mother really did a great job! It will be a treat to treasure part of it in a quilt. About the living room, well, if the name says it is a LIVING room, it is just fine to live there sewing and quilting! I do that all the time! ;-)))

  4. Love your blog.
    The squirrels probably 'squirrel' away the food in their cheeks until they get home!
    Suz in the Tules

  5. GM girl..thanks so much for coming by my blog and your from Finland how great is that..Now the squirrel I have peanut boxes out for them and feed them all day..they are just so fun to watch them play..I just love your blog and thanks again for stopping by..hope you have a safe and blessed day...hugs and smiles Gloria

  6. I'm with you. I love the holidays but it's great to get back to normal life.
    What a cute picture of the squirrel.
    I enjoyed seeing your earlier posts too. Love the Christmas photos.

  7. Hia Ulla, your mother was a genius! I am so impressed with her skills at making the fabric stretch to 2 items by "patchworking" the unseen parts. It is a beautiful fabric- I can see why you chose it.

    Squirrels are so funny to watch with their acrobatics. :-)

    I am glad I got the Christmas things packed away by 12th night but I am in a quandry about what to decorate in at the moment. It is a little early for my Easter bunnies.

  8. Hi, Ulla! Love the story about your skirt. The fabric in it is so beautiful. Your squirrel photo is great--they are such rascals. Happy new year!


  9. Your story about Libery fabric brings back memories of my trip to Liberty. It was during my black and white fabric days and I bought a piece of black and white and I knew just what I was going to do with it. Got back home (Utah) put it in the quilt with many other B&W's only to discover that it was dark blue and white! Oh well, that quilt will always have a story!


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