Sunday, 18 May 2014

A woman's needlework is never done : NZ onward

Blogging has been good therapy because it gives me a prompt to look back and reflect about the last week(s).
Confession: I've kind of lost my blogging mojo lately.
Sometimes I don't know how to express myself but a picture can say 1000 words.
A fringed velvet embroidered wall-hanging from Egypt.
Found in an op shop in Balclutha.
I'm guessing that a soldier brought it back after World War 2 for his mother.
I love the naivety of it.
For thousands of years people have been embroidering, either to embellish an object or to express themselves. These are some little purses I've acquired.

I don't use them but I love to look at them and think about the hours that went into making them, the attention to detail and the perfectionism.
I'm a bit like that at work, although I'm not much of an embroiderer at home.

The rosebud-embroidered bodice of a dress, which I accessorised last week with a navy cardigan and my green rose collar.

An embroidered woollen scarf which is my current favourite, now that the weather has officially turned to custard. 

A tablecloth embroidered in beautiful colours.

A bag from Oxfam.

A knitting needle holder, bought online.
The needlework is exquisite.

A paisley embroidered handkerchief case, made by my Nana.
One of my most treasured possessions.

A nylon nightie with an embroidered yoke and pocket, from a Gore op shop.

An embroidered picture of Waitaki Girls' High School, Oamaru, crafted by my late mother when she was at school there.
On mother's day last weekend, I found myself missing her a lot.
The yellow behind is the colour of my living room walls.
I had to empty everything out last week so the ceiling could be repaired, plastered and painted.
Before I put everything back I am thinking of painting it a light cream as I will be selling the house in 5 to 10 years.
It was also too cluttered and I will have to sell some of my china collection.

A tablecloth embroidered with poppies, in honour of ANZAC day a few weeks ago.

A piece I bought online - the colours are amazing.
I just can't resist this sort of tablecloth - found in an op shop.
They look like passionfruit flowers.
Things around here have been pretty busy.
On top of packing everything in the lounge up, and dealing with insurance claims, builders and painters, my cat became ill and went missing for three days.
When she turned up she was sicker than before and needed a trip to the vet and a course of antibiotics.
One of the neighbour's cats, Archie, has been constantly tormenting her in my garden and I suspect he was the cause of the wound in her head.
I finally lost patience with him and turned the garden hose on him, and he hasn't been seen since.
Lola can't stick up for herself at the moment.
The stress at work continues, with more budget and staff cuts looming because of our city's financial woes.
First world problems.
I've just been to see a film called Bella, about a mixed-race woman in England in the 18th century.
Highly recommended and a bit of a tear-jerker.
So I think about embroidery, and how women (and men) over the years have enjoyed it and escaped into it and made beautiful things out of just a few scraps of thread.


  1. I think it is hard to maintain blogging in the face of lots of Real Life stuff going on, at work and at home. But on the other hand, there is plenty of support to be had from the online community too. Anyway, it's nice to see a post from you, and one with so many beautiful treasures. I can see why you adore your grandmother's paisley hanky case, it's gorgeous. All of your embroidered textiles are, you have a really good eye. xxxx

    1. I agree, the support in our community is fabulous - it's what keeps me coming back! Thanks for your lovely words, Curtise.

  2. I always enjoy your posts....even if you're not feeling it, I still look forward to reading it. Those embroidered bags are gorgeous....I especially love the first one. And that multicoloured geometric fabric is incredible. I hope your cat is on the improve, & the stress at work settles down. Things are looking a bit grim here with federal budget cuts too. Xx

  3. I love embroidery, and fantasise that one day I will do lots of it...ahahaha!
    That hanging is totally amazing.
    O, yeah, blogging can be a drag at times. Just had a phase of having ntohing much to say myself. Life just does it's thing, and if there is no room for blogging, or life is just too demanding, so be it.
    Cat life is fascinating. We have a local cat whom I call Blackie Lawless, as he is quite the law unto himself. He seems to get on ok with our baby, but some cats can make things difficult.
    Fecking federal bollocks!!! XXX

  4. Blogging mojo's come and go, in my experience, and I really love the embroidery you have posted today. I particularly like the one from Egypt. I think there was a quilt or something a bit like this on Antiques Roadshow a while back and I was seriously impressed that it had been done by a man and also after one of the great wars. Sorry that work is stressful and that your cat has been in the wars. I think there is something going on in the cat world because my neutered Tom is acting all weird. And my girl cat is keeping her distance from him. Don't get me started on the DCC and budgets!! Lets have a coffee sometime!

  5. Such a lovely collection - I'm so glad these treasures are with someone who will care for them!

  6. you will like this blog


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