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What I did with My Holiday Weekend

December 29, 2011

I finally talked to my mother last Friday (before Christmas) and she declared that she and my brother had decided they didn’t want to do anything for Christmas because she’s “still not recovered from Thanksgiving”.  Plus, my nephew was sick (again).  This is the second Christmas in a row that has been canceled because of illness (or at least, presumed illness).  Plus, my sister-in-law has decided that having holidays at her house is no longer convenient for her, though it’s worked out all right for the last 6 years and they’re relatively equidistant between my parents and me…

Anyhoo, that meant that the Hubs and I got to spend the weekend at home, sleeping in and not having to worry about being anywhere at any particular time.  We did sleep in, had an unhealthy brunch at Big Boy on Saturday and worked on projects for the day.  Sunday, Christmas Day, we slept in again, exchanged gifts, had carrot cake pancakes and bacon for breakfast, and then worked on more projects!

Here’s one of the gifts the Hubs got for me – all kinds of pretty pictures and diapering patterns!

So, here’s what I did for the weekend (in no particular order):

7 loads of laundry (you don’t need pictures of that, do you?)

Cut & sewed a new 12th century tunic for the Hubs, using what was left of the brown linen from the Brown Bliaut Project.  I still need to trim off the excess of the neck facing inside, but other than that, it’s in his hands now to do some embroidery for decoration.

Cut the pieces for a short overtunic for myself out of some dark blue wool we picked up at the Wassail “Garage Sale”.  We lucked out with several pieces of nice wool – two that will be made into hoods and this dark blue that was about 2 yards of 60″ width.  Just enough to squeak a little tunic out of for me!  I need to get some other fabric and make a couple of underdresses at some point.  At that point, I ran out of sewing mojo, so the pieces are still waiting to be put together.  I’ll probably get to that on the upcoming New Year’s weekend, for which we have no travel or party plans either!

Finished another brickwork project.  I now have four pieces that need to be put together into needle books for 12th Night gifts.  I’m likely to get to those this coming weekend as well – kind of have to, since 12th Night is on January 7!

AND…

Charted four new patterns from pieces in Renate Kroos’s Niedersachsiche Bildstickereien des Mittelalters, which I have on inter-library loan.  This book is chock full of examples of brick stitch embroidery.  I do wish I could have my own copy, but it’s out of print, extremely hard to find, and apparently crazy expensive when you do find one.

These patterns are all from Katalog #56 in the book, an embroidered hanging made between the beginning and middle of the 14th century at a Damenstift, a kind of charitable home for ladies – not quite a convent, but a place that ladies of a certain age could go to live in a community with others for mutual support.  The scenes illustrate episodes from the life of St. Margaret of Antioch.  I’d love to find some good closeups of all of the scenes from this hanging – they have some fascinating patterns!

St. Margaret Summons the Dragon

St. Margaret Bursts out of the Dragon After Being Eaten

St. Margaret Defeats the Devil

St Margaret Meets Olibrius

 

Meanwhile, the Hubs has also been working on putting together some wooden frames that will be used as stretchers for the silk painting class I’m doing at 12th Night next week.  He’s been enjoying puttering around out in the garage, doing stuff with his hands for a little bit.  So far, he has 11 frames finished and in the house and a couple more still to be completed in the garage.  He’s such a good hubby!  These are small frames just big enough for a hanky-sized piece of silk.  For an introductory class, this is just right!

Now, back to prep for the new semester at work!

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3 Comments leave one →
  1. December 29, 2011 5:11 pm

    am not really into brick stitch, but i do like that dragon, i really like early medieval wormy dragons

  2. December 29, 2011 7:55 pm

    The dragon is very cool! I learned quite a bit about Margaret of Antioch today while figuring out which scene was which in this hanging. Part of the legend has her being swallowed by a dragon, but she’s holding a cross so the dragon’s throat gets burned and it spits her out (or explodes, depending on your translation)!

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