Making work for idle hands

I have been hobbling around like Lurch these last seven weeks.

It’s been getting progressively worse, to the point where a walking stick was distinctly helpful and I started to think of a hip replacement as something to be earnestly hoped for. Finally, the medical profession is taking a proper interest, and I discovered today that I have all sorts of alarming tests coming up. Nuclear medicine. MRIs. Do I really want radioactive isotopes inside me? What is all that magnetic resonance going to do to my natural magnetism (yeah, right). Due to the aforementioned hobbling, I haven’t been able to do much strenuous stuff, like unpacking more boxes. So, well, I’ve had to find something to do with my hands while I sit around on my bottom.

Screen shot 2014-11-06 at 11.24.23 AM

The empty pouch and its contents

Screen shot 2014-11-06 at 11.24.55 AM

Six fat quarters, or three fat quarters and a pile of finished hexie flowers

Screen shot 2014-11-06 at 11.26.09 AM

About 6″ square and 2″ deep, neatly closed up with a magnetic snap

Apart from rabidly churning out boxfuls of EPP hexies from all the suitably sized scrap fabric lying around, I decided to at last do something about a travel sewing kit specifically for hexies. I’m going to need something to do while I hang around the hospital… Actually, both hospitals, the one here with the scanners, and the one down south where I’m having some scheduled surgery later this month.

This tutorial  has been waiting patiently for me to find time for it. I first saw it on Granny Maud’s Girl’s blog, and fell in love with her version. Being me, I was unable to resist fiddling around with it a bit, but I’d say the finished result is pretty close to the original. I’ve always loved the combination of big spots and floral, and here’s the perfect excuse!

Screen shot 2014-11-06 at 11.26.23 AM

Teeny thread cutters….

Screen shot 2014-11-06 at 11.26.47 AM

Two pincushions, needle book and embroidery kit. Time to stop for a bit…

If I do take it away with me, I’ll have to substitute something else for the scissors or they’ll be taken away at the airport. The snips in the middle are my favourites, but the round thingy has notches in the edge which reveal a tiny sliver of sharp blade. Useful for cutting off lengths of thread, not so great for snipping off the end of a thread you’ve been sewing with…

So, this is one more hand made pretty to add to my collection. I think I probably have enough, just for now..

32 thoughts on “Making work for idle hands

  1. Kim says:

    Kate, this is a lovely little bag. I have saved this for myself for a future project. My thoughts are with you for your upcoming tests and decisions. Having something in my hands helps me to think more clearly. Take good care. Hugs from Texas

    • katechiconi says:

      I agree, having hand work give you something else to direct that intense focus onto. I’m feeling a little more settled; I have the first appointment lined up tomorrow morning early, and the next will be early next week. It’s all good…

  2. I have been testing my travel kit while sitting with my dad in hospital these past few weeks, so I know it will work.
    Drat! I should have sent you a pair of plane-safe scissors.
    I hope everything goes smoothly. I am sure your natural magnetism will remain! 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      What a kind thought! The tiny little snips in the middle will do just fine, they’re about as dangerous as baby teeth… I get my shot of radioactivity tomorrow morning at 7.15am, which I think is a rude hour to start that sort of thing. I hope your dad is OK/on the mend/ comfortable. I know my kit isn’t quite as perfectly made as yours, but I’ve been a little distracted. That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it!

  3. Jen Gardener says:

    Hope everything goes well Kate. Lovely little travel kit you’ve made. So organised!

    • katechiconi says:

      It was small enough to keep me busy for a while, but not so big that I couldn’t finish it in time. And I’m flying with hand luggage only, so it had to be compact. Glad you like it!

  4. Good luck. A batttery of tests can be exhausting enough in itself, without all the travelling in between. But clearly you’re all set, and feeling positive. Thinking of you 🙂 x

  5. Nanette says:

    I’ll be thinking of you tomorrow Kate, and next week. I hope all goes well and these tests put your mind somewhat at rest. I’ve looked at that little hexie kit, and thought about making one, I think yours turned out beautifully, a wonderful way to keep your hands busy and your mind focused. I’d love to see your embroidery kit “opened out”.

    • katechiconi says:

      It’s a very simple pouch. I’ll email you a screen shot of it with the flap open. I made it from the scraps of fabric left over from my father’s Isfahan quilt, I loved the colours and wanted something made from them that I could keep by me.

  6. EllaDee says:

    I’m sure being away from home, travelling, waiting around and all the other stuff… will be pleasanter accompanied by the beautiful things you have made. Don’t be surprised if you come away with orders 🙂

    • katechiconi says:

      One of the nicer things about spending a couple of days recuperating in Dorrigo is going to be spending time with my No. 1 quilting crony, whom I miss terribly! You’re right, of course, that having nice and familiar things around me will make life pleasanter. The only downside is that as I’m flying I can’t take Hospital Blankie with me…. It’s seen me through some fairly thin times, and those nasty white cellular blankets are just not the same!

  7. A lovely travel kit – is there room for a stitch ripper, or would that be taken away from you as a potential weapon? I’m thinking of you this morning and willing everything to be OK.

    • katechiconi says:

      Sadly, a stitch ripper would be whipped away. Luckily, as I’ll use this kit for hexie flowers, not a lot of stitch ripping is needed, and what there is can be achieved with a needle and patience. I appreciate all the positive thoughts, prayers, good wishes and helpful suggestions which have winged their way to me in the last 24 hours; I feel stronger and more positive about facing the next few days. What will be, will be!

  8. Jule says:

    I’m crossing my fingers that all goes well. 🙂

  9. tialys says:

    I’m sorry you are having problems and hope all the tests go well for you. At least your hands aren’t affected and you can get on with ‘stuff’. A friend of mine has rheumatoid arthritis and, when it gets really bad, she can’t sew or knit or crochet and that makes her almost more miserable than the pain.

    • katechiconi says:

      My arthritis is only osteo, and only affects my hands very slightly – fortunately not the sewing fingers! The tests are a bit worrying, but I’ve decided that there’s time enough to fret when the results are in, and I shall just get on with things in the meantime!

  10. Thanks so much for linking back to my tutorial! Your travel kit turned out great, and I’m so glad you like it! Sending you best wishes on your upcoming tests–I hope you find relief soon.

    • katechiconi says:

      Thank you for the good wishes, and the great tutorial! My travel kit isn’t nearly as neat and tidy as yours, but I do love it, and it will travel to hospital with me for something to do while I’m waiting.

  11. KerryCan says:

    Just having your project, to keep your hands and mind occupied, should help you deal with the upcoming tests and surgery–I hope so, at least!

    • katechiconi says:

      I have another small secret project to work on too, as it’s a surprise gift for someone. I think I’d go mad without my hand work. I have far too much imagination for my own good, and always imagine the worst possible outcome. The upside of that is that often I’m happily surprised!

  12. You’ll have already started the tests, my thoughts are with you. I love that you turn a tough situation into an opportunity. Stay strong.

    • katechiconi says:

      I need someone to quantify the problem for me, and then I can start taking action. But while they’re still looking, analysing and thinking, I’m working hard to refrain from shredding my fingernails!

  13. rutigt says:

    I´ve made two, because I didn´t do the first one right 🙂 Forgot to look at the tutorial, hahaha LOL. I use it for my Mother Earth pieces.
    Gun, Sweden

  14. […] And best of, I can carry it around in my new travel sewing kit! […]

  15. pattisj says:

    This is a cute kit!

  16. […] I follow and read regularly – a few month ago I read first at Carla‘s blog and then at Kate’s about the Hexie travel kit – made with a tutorial by Haley at thezenofmaking blog. I saw it […]

  17. […] we had only 30cm² (12″) of luggage space each I did manage to pack some WWF supplies in my hexie sewing kit. Along the way, I donated the hexie kit itself to my friend Mrs R, who needed something for small […]

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