Sea and sand quilts

We escaped for a few delightful days of playing on a beach in Suffolk, sniffing the sea air, and pretending we hadn’t a care in the world. It was marvelous. Switzerland is a wonderful place to live, and raise a family, but it certainly doesn’t have the sea. Mountains are all very well, and I don’t like to complain, but…

While we were in a little rented flat on the seafront, the only quilts around were those I drew in the sand. I was surprised by how much I missed the cosy cuddly feel of a quilt around me as I read, watched television (A rare treat! We don’t have one…), or slept. There is something special about snuggling under a handmade something when the wind is howling.

Sand quilt I stitched a little by hand in the dark evenings, and did some embroidery with the children. I was very touched to be using my ninety-year-old grandmother’s embroidery set: the wool, book and material that she passed on. “I won’t be doing that anymore”, she said simply. So we all gave it a go. My little four-year-old son embroidered “Granny” for her on some canvas. He did a lovely job, sticking his tongue out in concentration (and of course I forgot to photograph it before he gave it to her)! I was very proud of him — it should of course have been “Great Granny” for him, but that is a bit of a mouthful, and longer to stitch. She is Granny to us all.

Society must be defendedWe built sandcastles and defended them, always unsuccessfully of course, from the advancing tides. It was great fun to try, try, and try again. The sea always won.

On a market stall, I found some great fabric for making more bags, should I ever wish to try to make one again. Now if only I could remember if I need to add interfacing if I use this sort of canvas-plastic-stuff? Probably not for the airplane one? I’ll ask the girls tomorrow night.

Plastic fabric1And yes, the place we stayed in really does look like this!

Plastic fabric2To celebrate this marine theme — and to recover from losing the sea and returning to the moutnains — when the small people were finally asleep tonight, I basted a baby quilt covered in seagulls. The (Tula Pink?) birds and anchors came from the delightful Miss F, in a fabric swap during Patchwork in the Peaks.

This little quilt will be for a friend who just had her third baby, a little Miss E. I make it a rule not to always produce a quilt when friends breed. I wouldn’t want to raise expectations (or fear and dread?!), and so instead I just give a quilt when I really felt like it. But, secretly, I set myself the challenge to always make a quilt for a third child. Such children, I have decided, destined for endless family hand-me-downs, deserve a nice specially-made gift at the outset. Now it turns out that two of my friends in Geneva are now in this happy situation, so what seemed like a rather empty promise is getting real. Time to get squiggling on this one. But not tonight.

Seagulls1Back to real life tomorrow, and the awaiting 200 emails. Oh the joy. I need to sleep and brace myself.

Happy sewing! JJ

About pragmaticpatchwork

Academic and quilter
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4 Responses to Sea and sand quilts

  1. Pamela says:

    What a wonderful getaway! I love that you are using your grandmother’s embroidery set.

  2. Katy says:

    I know you hate to read and follow instructions, but if you look in the class notes it tells you all about interfacing for those fabrics and how to work with them 😉 In short, yes you need some, but go dig out the notes and see what…

  3. You’ll be lucky to take those lovely beach huts & blue polka dot fabrics home to do anything with! Lovely as always…

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