Saturday, December 12, 2009

Mend and Make Do

It seems my announcement of the computer's death was a bit premature. Upon closer inspection, the computer had a pulse and was heard to whisper, "I'm not quite dead yet." So, thanks to some clever IT guys at The Engineer's workplace and to The very handy Engineer himself, the old box was resuscitated. Thank goodness! I've been speaking to it in quiet and encouraging tones, hoping to keep it happy and healthy.

So, what have I been up to in the meantime? Have I ever told you that I like to arrange things...and then re-arrange? I sometimes get an overwhelming urge to move the furniture about, change out the nick-knacks, replace the wall art, or re-do the order of things. I can't help it. This time my target was Miss Ringlet's room.

What with the cold snap we've been having, I thought her room needed some warming up. The bed needed to come away from the chilly wall it had scooted up against and to be honest, it was looking a little frumpy. That little bed needed a good dose of dress up.

The quilt that was on my bed when I was her age had been made by my mother. It was a bright and skippy patchwork made from squares of groovy 60's and 70's fabric. I loved it. I used to run my hands over the quilt and pick out my favorite squares. She even made a matching pillow case to go with it.

So, down to the basement I go, crawling on my hands and knees under my sewing table, pulling at boxes until I find what I am looking for. There it is, my quilt! The batting had gone all shifty and lumpy, there were holes and tears and a general fading due to years of love and service. Oh look! There is the pillow case too! I spend a moment with the seam ripper and unpick the hand stitching at one end. Then out comes the unruly batting. A few patches and mending and it's looking pretty good. Not having any batting in the size required, it strikes me to turn it into a duvet cover. Testing it out, I find it is an exact fit for the plain white comforter on my daughters bed, perfect!

It is also quite a thrill when I recall the vintage Raggedy Ann and Andy sheets that I saved from my grandparents house when my Papa moved. After I dress the bed, I realize that I have pretty well re-created my own childhood bed. I hope that it brings as much comfort and warmth to my little gal as it did to me. She was consulted on all of this and was quite agreeable to the spiffing up.

As I stood back and looked at the room I was struck by how nearly everything in that room was handmade, thrifted, handed down and passed on. The dollhouse, toy chest, cushions, curtains, mirror, some of the quilts, were made by my husband or I. I've had the dresser since I was 16...bought by my mother at a garage sale. The bed frame was scavanged from I don't know where and other quilts were made by family and friends or bought at yard sales. The quilt rack and end table were family pieces passed on to me. It felt satisfying and humbling, to look upon this collection of everyday items, costing so little in money but, so rich in history...crafted by hand and so colorful in their storied travels.

Miss Ringlet is rather pleased and I must say, I love how it turned out. And, it must be noted that I am happily rolling along in "A Challenge of the Utmost Kind," suffering not at all. Who needs Ikea? Not I.

It's good to be back my dears. Have a stellar weekend and I will see you again next week with stars in my eyes and other nonsense. I am away to bake cookies and make more handcrafted presents.

21 comments:

Pomona said...

You are an example to us all, dear Lola! And so is Miss Ringlet - I think I might show Princess B the picture of that neat and tidy room - I am resorting to bribery at the moment but a shining example like that might do the trick (her brothers are emphatically not a shining example on the tidiness front). I am always shifting my furniture around (or rather the Head Chef shifts it around under my direction) to the point that friends come and look round and imagine that I have bought something new (which I haven't done for ages) such is the revivifying effect of such manoeuvres.

Have a good weekend!

Pomona x

Farmgirl Cyn said...

I don't know what to say....except, I LOVE it! I love the idea of it. I love the working out of the idea. I love how it all came together. I love that it used to be yours when you were little. What a blessing for your dear daughter!!!

Celia said...

WHat a beautiful story and a great treasure for your daughter! Lovely!

Vic said...

Oh Lola, Lola, Lola!!!

You have outdone yourself here my Sweet - what a gorgeous room, what a gorgeous quilt & what gorgeous memories your daughter will have of this time & that quilt, just as you do!

I loooooooooooooooooove it, in fact, I don't think love is a strong enough word... I'm sure you could think of a more appropriate one, being the wordsmith that you are!

I am glad your computer is feeling better, with a little TLC.

Floss said...

Superb! I was noticing a little girl at our party last night who was dressed much like my old Raggedy Ann doll - I bet she would have loved to have a bed like this! I really looks wonderful. Our boys have colourful quilts made by an old friend, and I think they make their room look really cosy.

Aussie-waffler said...

Oh I did love this post with the stories behind all the treasures in Miss Ringlett's room. So lovely. Now are those cookies done yet ? I'll swing by in about....oh I don't know...24 hours time.

Hashi said...

Oh, this room looks wonderful! I would love to have the old blue quilt from my childhood to pass on to my daughter. The one I cut a hole in, and denied that it was me. Yep.

Leonie Guld said...

I am a HUGE fan of a post like this!!!! Our rooms are very similar, with patchwork beds, old furniture, nothing matching but everything has its place. Perfect!!

mamaayanna said...

This is just beautiful! LOVE it
Well done.

I just found your blog and love what I see so far. I am rather new at blogging and still so amazed what is all out there.

Nice to meet you

Lola Nova said...

Well, no wonder I missed you! You are all just the loveliest bunch, really!

Meagan @ecoMILF said...

This is so pretty. I love what you've done. xoxo m.

june at noon said...

What a fantastic room. I love how bright and cheery it is, and how special that so many of the things in it have meanings of their own!

Kristi said...

I love the bedding. All the colors and patterns it all meets and comes together so well. So alive, just love it.

Mom L said...

I love it! In fact, some of the squares in the quilt look familiar - almost like some in the quilt I made for Diane when she was little. My batting also became lumpy over time, but I had stitched so thoroughly in the middle that there was no taking it apart. You did a beautiful job, as usual - I'm so glad your supervisor approves!!!

Pia K said...

the room looks just wonderful! both peaceful and inspirational, colourful and serene and the same time. quite not like too too many overloaded, crammed with nasty plastic things children's rooms these days. this is of course how it should be, like you said, full of memories from time past and promise of beautiful things to come.

Leahdis said...

Such a beautiful room, the bed looks like a cloud. Love the Ann and Andy sheets. I still have my Andy from when I was little. The Quilt cover looks fantastic, your mother will be pleased.

Mare said...

Oh I just LOVE it! And it suits her just fine! I would love that room for myself! :)

crzylady said...

lovely lovely lovely! Gorgeous and inspiring. I have been aching to just "get rid of it all" and can't wait for my week off to give a good overhaul to "Things"

lifeshighway said...

Just beautiful. I love the quilt and I "squee" at the Raggedy Ann sheets. You have outdone yourself.

Come over this way and help me.

Theresa said...

I like this room

uniquebedroom said...

nice bedroom.. the color is so match with the theme.. love it..