Tag Archives: sewing

The Box from Berlin

In my previous post,  First Footing,  I shared with you  the arrival of my first mail of the year, all the way from Berlin. The  mail package was my prize from Beautycalypse’s first international ethical  giveaway.

I took my time opening the parcel because a) it’s not every day I win a prize and b) it’s not every day I receive a parcel from anywhere, let alone Berlin. These special events need to be savoured and made to last  as long as possible. However, the mail was eventually opened and here is what I found. Would you like to have a peek ?……..

Do not drop! Handle with Care!

Do not drop! Handle with Care!

at the divine, utterly, utterly divine, (cannot say this loud enough or long enough) BLYSS chocolate,

Chefs and sommeliers tell us they think BLYSS is the most pure chocolate they've experienced

“Chefs and sommeliers tell us they think  BLYSS  is the most pure chocolate they’ve experienced”

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and, then, would you like to check out, ( courtesy of  ABURY Beyond Fashion ), a purse and a necessaire with beautiful Zwilling manicure set ? ……….

A purse and a necessaire from Abury

A purse and a necessaire from Abury (which remind  me that my pride and joy when I was young was my very own Moroccan  embossed leather handbag 🙂 . )

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and, last of all, but really first of all, because none of this would have happened without her,  would you like to see this  card made by Nath ?

A card from Beautycalypse

A card from Beautycalypse

Learn, think, share, join the Quest.....

Learn, think, ask, share, join the Quest…..

So, now, I am off to eat some  BLYSS and think about that Quest… which seems to take one just about everywhere….Berlin, Morocco, Ecuador, Australia, New Zealand….would you like to come along? I’ll let you taste some of my chocolate if you do 🙂

© silkannthreades

Stitching Memories

In my much younger days, I was very interested in sewing and needlework. My mother, who believed she was not skilled with needle and thread, arranged for me to have sewing lessons with some of her more skilled friends. As a result, by the age of about ten or eleven, I became quite the little seamstress, cheerily making clothes for myself, my little sister and my mother.  My enthusiasm for sewing was at its peak in those years and, although I continued to sew in to adulthood, it was never with the same exuberance and excitement. Finally, at the ripe old age of 26, I stopped sewing.

I may have stopped sewing, ( anything more than a button on a shirt, that is ), but I remained in love with the idea of sewing; the wondrous process of turning one form of cloth into another shape and size ; the different stitches and seams, the cuts and darts and frills and facings. Not to mention the lovely ribbons and laces and trimmings, and the beautiful hand-made button holes with equally beautiful buttons, usually recycled from that ultimate household treasure trove; the button jar.

When we lived in New Delhi, I was privileged to be part of a group of women who employed a tailor, named Mr Singh. Not just any tailor. As far as I was concerned, he was the most skilled tailor ….EVER. As per our group agreement, each of us booked Mr Singh’s sewing service for a couple of weeks at a time, and, at the appointed hour, he would arrive on his bicycle, with lunch container secure on the handle bar, and his hand-operated sewing machine carefully strapped to the carrier. Then, quietly and efficiently, he would settle in his chosen corner…..and sew and sew;  everything and anything  I asked for. Everything and AnythingFor me it was magic; for him, I suppose, it was merely another day at the office.

Here is a little piece I wrote about Mr Singh in February 2003.

“Mr Singh. Bearded, turbaned, thin as a pin. There he sits, cross-legged, at his sewing machine, in the dim, back room. A silent figure, stitching his magic; making my dreams. I can see him still in the dim back room of my mind.

Why do I see him now? Because today, his stitches, and my dreams, are displayed brightly on the washing line. The duvet cover we created together, from dress scraps and my grandmother’s sheets, is blowing in the Christchurch breeze; glistening white in the glare of  a Christchurch sun. I look at the vibrant colours on white Colour on Whiteand remember the muted tones of Mr Singh; blue and grey,  grey on white, grey on grey, almost a shadow in the shaded back room. Muted Ah, yes, quiet, gentle Mr Singh; a master of many stitches.  I miss his serenity, his dignity, his creativity.”

The photos in this post are all of the duvet cover. I took them this morning in our bright autumnal sunshine. The colours are no longer bright; they have softened with age. Twenty three years have gone by since Mr Singh pieced all the different fabrics together.Marking Time

Sheet notes: the white cotton sheets used for the duvet are at least 50 years old now, and the coloured scraps range in age from  25 to 35 years old. The buttons on the cover would be close to  30 years old . I think they  were salvaged from a dress of mine, made in Zimbabwe!  The duvet cover spends most of its present life in the linen cupboard, snuggled in lavender, in refined retirement. It is no longer subjected to harsh wear and tear and the rigours of washing machine and sunlight.

© silkannthreades