So, the red circle and the grass are now fully applied and finished. Time to turn my attention to the population of the Sea and Sky.
(Click on any image to enlarge)
I’m happy with how the red tape has gone down. No baggy, saggy bits, no gaping. It’s good stuff. I’ve also done a colour fastness test (not a moment too soon, but I got away with it this time), and it doesn’t bleed red in either hot or cold, plain or soapy water, it doesn’t transfer red when rubbed on a white cloth, and I’m happy it’ll behave itself in a cool, short wash. Ideally, this isn’t going to be the kind of quilt that gets washed too often. I know it was intended to snuggle under in the nasty English winter, but as many of you have pointed out, it’s going to be a labour of love and should perhaps be displayed instead? Ah well, it’s a 60th birthday gift for my brother, and he will accord it the value he perceives… But I WILL be sewing a pocket on the back to put a rod through so it can be hung on the wall.
I’m starting with the fish. They will swim to left and right, outside the circle, in the darker blue area of Sea at the bottom. I’m not doing static, side-on, stylised fish, I’m going to try for movement, sinuousness and gorgeous colour. The full-scale templates are done, so the next step will be sewing these babies together, and then applying them. It’s kind of making me hanker for iridescent thread, but I don’t want this quilt getting too glitzy, so I’ll be satisfying myself with using fabrics with a metallic print, so the fish catch the light. Originally I was thinking flat colour, but the lure of strip piecing together a rainbow of shades is proving hard to resist…. I’ll have to see how much extra work it’ll make.
For those more interested in gardening, I have a few new flowers to report. The new Hibiscus rosa-sinensis is proving to be an outstanding performer: geranium red flower against pale green and white variegated foliage. The Spathyphyllum (Peace Lily) is flowering, a good effort, and the Ajuga reptans (Bugle) is sending out runners like mad, one of which has just produced a tiny, tiny blue flower.
I’m impressed with the performance going on out there, and continue to be amazed at how fast stuff grows here! Perhaps in a few years I’ll have become blasé, but for now, I love it! Except for the grasshoppers, who are currently decimating the new leaf growth on the lemon tree. I ruffle the leaves every time I pass it, and at least 5 of the little bastards leap away. They’re tiny, about a centimetre long, but the damage they do is very noticeable, and can’t be fun for the lemon.
Tomorrow I’m going to make a GF lemon cheesecake, and will post the recipe. It’s pretty foolproof, and disappears fast.