Success is sweet, especially after a long effort. Thirty years qualifies. It wasn't hard work all those years--more like on-again, off-again with years of inattention in between. But one day a person looks at a project and has to say, "What was I thinking to start this? And how much more time do I want to put into it, if any? And if I stop now, what happens to this that I've finished?" Good questions.
I'm a big Winnie the Pooh fan. In the 1970's I was in bliss with a yearly series of Pooh calendars published with all the marvelously charming Ernest H. Shephard decorations (no Disney for me). I became inspired to make a quilt, the thought being to embroider a map of Hundred Acre Wood and 12 scenes from the Pooh books circling it. I started stitching with the individual scenes--black thread on ivory broadcloth--to look just like the books. Now some 30 years later, ten of the small pictures are done (three completed in the last two months). When I looked at the huge map, I could feel my heart drain away--another 30 years? I no longer wanted a quilt. But what would I do with these ten dear sketches in black embroidery. Sell them on ebay? Frame them? Ugh.
Then the thought came. The images would be used to decorate aprons. The aprons could go as gifts to close friends and family who love Winnie the Pooh. My mind's eye saw the exact fabric for the completed project. The fabric store would have it.
|Brown, black, cream yielded 3|
The process was anything but straightforward. I wanted a bold stripe in black and ivory. A store that claims to have a world-class selection had one yard (2 aprons) of what I needed. Second best was a busier brown, black and cream (3 aprons).
|Cute, but not going to work|
Then there were several unsuccessful purchases. I simply could not move forward with the remaining five. When I sew, it is for my own pleasure only. If I don't like the fabric or workmanship, it's a dead fish in any case (don't ask me the precise definition of that phrase).
Next trip yielded several yards of unbleached muslin. Horrible--don't even need a picture of that. Enough already! Time to bite the thimble and drive to the far, far side of town to a real giant--Fabric Depot. I could picture the exact yardage draped all over the store.
|One of the embroidered quilt "squares"|
|Pooh visiting Piglet's house at the base of a big tree.|