Known as Epiphany in the Christian calendar year, in Hispanic countries January 6 is also called the Day of the Magi, commemorating the visit of the Wise Men to the Baby Jesus. But probably most people would know this celebration as “Little Christmas.” This is when my sewing circle plans on celebrating together – after the Christmas celebrations, so we are all relaxed and able to enjoy this time together.
This year we postponed a couple of days, so we could celebrate on our regular meeting day (Thursdays). What with both Christmas and New Year’s falling on Thursdays this year, it had been 3 weeks without seeing each other.
Our group gained another member this year, making us now 7. Our new friend, Mariangela, is Italian, and we just love her to pieces. She surprised us all with these beautiful handmade silver bells.
Here’s everybody admiring their little bells. Let me introduce them. Mariangela is the one to the right, facing the camera. Right behind her (where you can’t see her) is Ibeth, aka the life of the party. Next to her, Elena, the ultra perfectionist of the group. (Unusual for her, she was doing some hand sewing today. She prefers her sewing machine and carts it back and forth. She’s even figured a way to do EPP on the machine.) Luchita sits at the end – of the entire group, she’s become the expert in appliqué. She does some amazingly intricate and small work. To the left sits Susy, and is here to prove all blonde jokes wrong. Sharp wits and warm heart, in many ways she is the “mama” of the group. And then first to the left is Bachita. The silent one, the listener. Yet it is she who proposes group projects, and once everyone is embarked working on the same thing, she quietly starts up an entirely different project of her own. I love that capacity in her.
A better shot of Luchita, Elena, and Ibeth. As you can see, Ibeth draws a lot of attention – probably because she is one of the most optimistic, positive, cheerful people I know…
And a better shot of our beautiful and elegant Susy:
This is a group of really busy women with very active lives, who set this time aside as sacred and necessary for their mental health. Sometimes it takes a little time to finish projects. As you can see, time ran out, so they continue working on Christmas projects for next time around.
For little Christmas I, in turn, made all my buddies chatelaines. Almost all of us use the same type of scissors and we tend to get confused as to who laid theirs down where, so I figured we needed a system. I hope this works (pattern coming soon):
And then, since I don’t believe in wrapping paper, I just rolled them up and tied them with their own cording.
Mariangela is a brand new quilter, and has only been quilting for a few months. She definitely has the talent, though, wouldn’t you say? She just finished appliqueing this little wallhanging and is now getting ready to hand quilt it.
Mariangela has also gotten the EPP bug. This is her first EPP project, and we all agreed it is oh, so very elegant. She plans to add an appliqué vine on the border.
Last but not least, look at the gift that my wonderful friends gave me! They all chipped in, and Ibeth actually built it (she’s the carpenter in the group). My very own, “real,” large-sized light box! The glass area alone measures 21 x 30″, yet is light enough for me to be able to pick it up and move it anywhere I like. Plus, I can also raise and tilt the glass frame, if I like or need. This is going to be great for tracing my applique and quilting designs!
Sigh. What a wonderful day!