The Familiar Comfort of Cloth

The other day I opened the sewing trunk that serves as a bench in the front hall area.

And removed anything that might be usable for clothing that was among all the linen pieces. Those and the tattered shawl to press and take another look at. I even found a small stack of purely Australian printed swatches

It felt good to put the iron to everything I pulled out….especially the shawl of pigments with holes and stitches.

One stack of pressed linen went in with new two metre lengths of linen bought in the last two months for pants or tops. Small scraps went into a bag for patchwork. And some of those were rolled up with the leftover Eucalyptus leaves that I ordered from California several months ago.

That bundle and two shirts from my closet that I filled with more leaves and wrapped tight, were put in a pot with iron and simmered for three hours yesterday. The iron scrap is from a leg of an old wood stove that I bought in 1997 on my first trip to Australia. I was in a recycle shop and the man who took my money was incredulous, “Don’t you Americans have rusty things at home?!” I tried to tell him that it was not the same thing but to no avail. He thought I was nuts.

I love that smell of cooking cloth with leaves and seed pods from Eucalyptus. Now the three bundles are sitting in a bucket on the porch for a week or so before I unwrap them. A good day it was…the smell in the house with fond memories.

I folded up the shawl and then went through my threads to do more stitching into the loosely patched areas. It is like holding a cloud when I work on it.

And I get to use Marla’s gift of an old book turned into a sewing kit. Lovely.

When I finish this over the winter, it should be completely held together with stitching.

My soup from the other day turned into what Adele Outteridge calls, “spoon standing soup”. Two meals a day of this is not getting too boring but I did like having lunch out today.

I get my ugly stitches removed tomorrow morning after I go to the gym. Tuesday morning it was a lovely sunrise when I was leaving there.

By the time I went around two curves to get back home, it looked like this. A beautiful morning.

The dogwood tree out back is turning and showing it’s berries. And the red fountain grass loves being near the pond.

I am still writing and looking over the Burke and Wills story. It will need total concentration to make it all sound right. And in the meantime I thought it would be fun to also publish the Stoat Story. I spent most of yesterday afternoon trying to find the original word document on my computer. No luck! Where did it go? I tried all the searches but only the illustrations show up…none of the text. So I will have to take my own copy of the book and write it all down from there to get it into a word document that can be arranged with the illustration that part of the story goes with. In my limited edition of the story all the pictures were connected end to end in a concertina form with the text below. I won’t be able to do that if I self publish through Amazon under Sandy Webster. But it is just another challenge to figure out.

There was such a collection of pictures I had to get a blog written to get them used. So this one might seem a bit scattered. Next week I will be able to show the leaf contact printed cloth and shirts. No more soup making for at least a month. I am taking myself out to dinner tomorrow night to celebrate something…maybe getting stitches out…maybe finding lost documents…maybe just having good food and wine. Or maybe writing a good poem for the poetry meeting next week.

Speaking of writing, my first royalty checks have been deposited. Thank you to those here in this country and those very good people down in Australia.

Better go…could use a walk and another search through the computer.

Til later….