This is a pic of the poor little confused bulb flowering in my garden. It must think it is Spring, but of course it is May here, & Autumn. The lack of clarity is due to the photographer's poor shot. The Camellia is the last on that little shrub.
The beautiful large ones are 'share' blooms from our neighbour's tree, which hangs over into our garden. It has full rich blooms & many of them have white ripples on the petals. Yesterday's pic was one of the neighbour Camellias.
This is almost a quilt post. I am suffering from a serious lack of quilt drive. I have too many projects sitting about dejectedly. No desire to pick them up, either. I am not letting it stress me, just wonder why.
When my Daughter J first introduced me to quilting, she was living with us for a time. I watched her doing her neat little handstitches as she patched her huge Queen size hand pieced quilt. I know I am far too impatient for hand piecing to suit me, but I have actually done a hand pieced one.. well the top of it is done.
We had a wonderful local quilt shop way back then. I used to go with DJ to look at all the luscious fabrics, then the magazines. Australian Patchwork & Quilting was a favourite. Then I decided to get into this & try it for myself. My children gave me a lovely charm pack of pretty fabrics, & I made myself a very basic charm square quilt. I was very happy with that, but of course I then realised I had caught the 'bug.'
I wasnt going to be able to stop at one. My next quilt was one of June Gilchrist's patterns, Home is Where the Heart is. I understand this has always been a very poplular pattern, & I certainly enjoyed making it. DJ & I would haunt the LQS's in search of the perfect piece of fabric. I discovered I love applique, & did a lot of it on my machine, but also grew to love hand applique.
One day, in our travels looking for Quilt shops, we happened upon a shop near the sea. Before I knew what was happening the woman who ran the shop had talked us into taking classes at her shop. She had lots of nice quilts on display. She had a class in progress. Everyone seemed to be head down, & working away.
So off we went next week, on a Wednesday. Chose our quilts to make. I chose one of a garden, with machine applique for a technique, along with lots of other blocks using various techniques, thinking I may as well learn 'properly'. DJ chose a mostly hand pieced country quilt. And we started to sew, & expected to have fun, & laughs & enjoy ourselves.
WRONG!! We were not there to enjoy ourselves, we soon discovered. We were there to do as we were told. We were not encouraged to laugh, talk, or have any fun at all. Misery could be seen etched on some faces, & apart from hastily secret mutters to each other talking was considered rebellion. Or betrayal. Or something... perhaps something 'free'.
One day we went to find another class had run over into our time. The lovely lighthearted tutor began chatting to me, & showing me 'how to'... quickly pounced upon, & removed from my earshot & vision. Perish the thought we might learn something free!! The tutor was left with her mouth open, mid laugh. I quickly put my head down again, & wiped the smile off my face!
As we slunk miserably out of the 3rd class we vowed not to return. But DJ had paid for her fabrics. I had no idea where to go from where I was. So we went back. And suffered again. Once I got shrieked at "WHAT are you doing!!?" I cant remember the 'crime', but we all jumped. What a strange, uptight, woman she was.
DJ being much like me, was given to laughter, & tom foolery, & irreverance, we couldnt understand why things had to be so buttoned down. As we silently lugged our machines out to our car, we sneaked secret looks at some of the other students. And gradually we made the discovery that we all felt the same way. One woman told us she used to walk along the beach to the classes, & lecture herself on her gutlessness. "Today I will stand up to her" she would promise herself. Then, she told us, she would cry all the way home along the beach mentally flogging herself for being gutless! She was doing the hand sewn country quilt the same as DJ. They even dared to secretly swap some patterns.
Of course in the end we just left. We couldnt stand it any longer, & couldnt see the point of having no fun. And just as we had decided to go to classes at another, closer, Quilt Shop, it closed, so we were on our own again. It is a wonder I kept on quilting, but I found I could enjoy myself doing my own thing, & never mind if it is the 'right' way or not. Whatever works for me.
And the shop where we took the lessons, closed too...which was no surprise at all.