Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Looking for Colour in a Grey World

The world has been grey for so many days, we've forgotten what the sun looks like. All our lovely bits of snow have melted off; the weather is now just warm enough not to snow, and to turn what moisture there is into fog and damp.

A good time to get out the Christmas mini-quilts and begin the annual decorating. Though I haven't quilted anything in years, I love to decorate with these:

Most of them are quilted by machine, but this one is almost entirely hand-quilted:

(Back in my quilting days, quilt backs were mostly plain. But still fun to look at if you're a quilter.)

My only bargello project (can you tell I was a big fan of meandering quilting?):

Detail of a tiny paper-pieced block:

Looking at the all the fabric trees made me want to find a real one, so on Sunday I headed out to the local tree farm. Dampness filled the air, diffusing the light and making all my photos just a little misty.

The car bumped over the trail as I headed for the farthest possible corner of the farm.

I've written before about this tree farm; it's an unconventional one where baby trees mingle with reverend old pine and spruce, nothing is ever dyed or sprayed, and trees are trimmed casually if at all. A very far cry from the manicured rows of matching, near-perfect trees at a traditional tree farm - but I like it just the way it is.

Stumps are everywhere, as are tiny new trees just starting out in life:

This stump was covered with lovely pale-green fungi, like tiny jade-coloured horns:

Some of the trees come pre-decorated; I was sorely tempted to take this one:

In fact I'd already found what would become our tree, almost the moment I set foot out of the car. But I still walked the entire farm - partly to see if there were a better tree somewhere else, and partly for the joy of traipsing through woods and fields on a misty December day, admiring the golden stubble, the pale champagne grass, the blue-green spruce, and the rusty-red-needle-carpeted ground.

I didn't find a better tree, but I did find plenty of colour under those grey skies. Then back to the car for the saw and the chosen tree, then home in the deepening twilight.

Here's our tree, lit but not yet decorated:

Judging by the photo above, I seem to have brought some of that mistiness indoors with me. (Actually my little camera couldn't get a clear shot in the dark room, so the photo was pixellated for the fun of it).

Ooh - pixellated photo = quilted tree! :)

How's your world right now? Grey, white, brown, or colourful?

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  1. Love the little quilts, they'll add lots of colour to those grey days.
    Very mild here too, 58F today and not a snowflake in sight.
    Susan x

  2. Your little quilts are so pretty! Cutting down your own tree is such a good way to go, wish we had a tree farm near us. Still very green here, around 70º today and warmer by the weekend.

  3. I enjoy d going to find your tree with you today! :-). Pretty quilts too and nice quilting.

  4. Brighter! Does that count? Enjoy your live tree, but I'll have to settle for my sweet mom's little fake optic one. Although I have begun walking around our meadow, I haven't tried going up our stairs to rescue my Christmas devorations. Your quilt pieces are beautiful! Linda@Wetcreek Blog

  5. I love seeing those quilts and I find it such a wonderful art although I've never tried it myself. I rather like the soft focus on the tree caused by the lack of ambient light. Your close-up makes it look very stylized. You have created a new square for another quilt!

  6. My sister gave us the cutest "mug rugs" she quilted in xmas fabrics and colors this evening.. right after a wonderful evening with her family and my sister and her husband at their house. My life is full of color and love right now.. I'm enjoying it. ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  7. Our world is pretty brown and gray too, but with lots of glitter from kids' art projects. :) I love your quilts, they are all beautiful. Wow. The Christmas tree is lovely too. I actually like the pixelated look on the tree. It reminds me of how I would always squint at the tree to make it look blurry. I did that all the time when I was a kid. I just liked the look, I guess. It looked sort of misty and dreamy, just like you said here. Great minds think alike. :)

  8. Oh I love those sweet little quilts! They are so very bright and festive. :) You are very multi-talented sweet friend. :) Hope the sun shines brightly today and the skies are blue, too. Blessings :)

  9. Yesterday my world was very bright blue and a balmy 16 degrees Centigrade. Today it was damp and windy but, on the whole I am not unhappy.

    I love the way you can just saw down your own tree, I think things might be different here but, never decorating, I can't say for sure.

    I also like the way you spelled 'grey'!

  10. Such a pretty little tree with lights. Ours may go up Saturday. It is very warm and very windy here. Fireman and I actually got out on our bikes. That was a bit of a stretch...but we did it.
    Love the baby trees just starting to grow. How sweet this post!

  11. Your quilted pieces are beautiful! Your tree looks great too, I like the pixel photos! xx

  12. Your quilts are lovely, I would love to be able to quilt but I don't have the patience. That's a great place to go tree hunting the one you have chosen is a lovely shape and looks very pretty even in it's pixelated state. :) xx

  13. I love your tree! And we still have some color on our leaves, I have never seen that this late in the year.

  14. Lovely -I do always like the sound of where you buy your Christmas tree. your quilts are fabulous. I love those tiny wee trees! Juliex

  15. I like quilt decoration too. However, I don't have the patience to hand quilt, so I'm content using a machine.

    It is bright and sunny today in my Colorado hamlet. That is until this evening. Your tree farm would be a nice place to visit right after a snow.

  16. I would love to go to this farm! The world around me was sunny today, thank God! I needed it. I went into the woods and had a talk to nature. :-)

  17. I so love your little quilts. I, too, remember the time when quilt backs were plain. Although plain backs are so sentimental, I'm really getting hooked on pieced backs. Perhaps because it helps me use up more scraps...

    I think you should quilt a pixelated tree in fabric!

  18. It's pretty gray in my world as is typical for an Oregon winter. There are little spots of color like in yours. There's the metallic fuschia head on our Anna's hummingbird who stays year round. The flowering current has held on to it's rusty orange leaves. There's a flash of orange-red when the flicker flies across the yard flaring its tail. Mosses and ferns that had dried and turned brown over the summer are a lush green from the winter rains. And for a few weeks our neighborhood will be glowing with Christmas lights.

    Love your little quilts!

  19. It sounds like a fun way to get your tree. I miss Wisconsin in the Winter, Spring, Summer and Fall but especially the Fall and at Christmas time.

  20. Adorable little quilts! And I loved walking with you to find your tree. It's lovely.

  21. These little quilts are really very adorable! My co-workers at said that it would be a perfect present as for her! Besides I like your Christmas tree with the lightnings!

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