so much to be grateful for, Part 2

what the settee looked like before
and then, below

on the far right is Django's sofa

collected even more yesterday....

first batch of Catharina swatches dangling above work counter top
sorted from left to right: 100% cotton, 50/50% mix linen/cotton, 70/30% mix linen/cotton, one batch 70/30% linen/wool mix, one batch 100% wool, on the right 100% linen
all so very gorgeous light scrumptious in fact and easy to sew, I imagine

Leiner Leinen

Toubab Paris
be sure to check out this site!

  It all truly started 5 years ago when Django arrived in our lives as a puppy. When we were away he would chew up whatever he came across. Sometimes a shoe, other times the pillows on the settee, resulting in a slightly-worse-for-wear settee: one cushion left intact, one 80% left over, still usable though....two completely ruined cushions and lots of tears in the rest of the cover. I used an old woolen blanket to hide the worst and in Winter sprinkled several outdoor cushions all over indoors. It is always a moveable feast in our household. This is how we managed for a couple of years.
Fast forward to a couple of weekends ago, when Joke, a neighbour further down the road let her house be transformed into a 2 day pop-up store 'Luxury Delights', organized by Catharina, who runs her business Interior Help  and Chantal Osmosis Interior.I went not intending to buy anything (how little do I know myself)
First I fell in love with a linen tea towel, which I bought with my husband in mind, not that he does a lot of washing up, but he does shoot and many of the animals depicted on the tea towel are well known to him and have at one time or another ended up on our dinner the buying had begun! I got to talking to the lady who was selling various of the items on display, soft furnishings, designer lamps and also jewelry designed by an African designer based in Paris; all the jewelry is hand stitched by women in Parisian sewing workshops where they still have the skills for haute couture stitching. I noticed the broche and also it's price, a mere 30 euro's, and decided I would buy it for myself: a unique hand made piece! It came in the beautiful blue bag. I was so very happy and as I mentioned had gotten to talking with Catharina, who when I told her I work with fabrics asked if I also worked with linen and if so, would I be interested in her stash of linen swatches? Well, you can guess my answer.
And so, a day later she returned with a bag full of goodies and I have given them a place in the studio. I have so many ideas: dresses, tablecloths, pillow covers, small pillows....

On the second day the pop up store was open I got to talking with my husband about the carpet in the living room, which had also seen better times (thanks to Django too) and wasn't it time we bought a new one? To my amazement he agreed at once and of course I had a card up my sleeve: the antique rug you see in the photo's was also for sale at Catharina's! At a price we could afford and so the rug entered our house and inspired me to at last get round to fixing the settee: I ordered a mattress for the seating area and have been hand stitching the rainbow cover for the past couple of weeks, the fabrics are from fabric swatches I found on the street, I kid you not! They have been waiting patiently in a basket in the studio for years now. I washed the settee covers and dyed some parts (using a commercial dye: Dylon navy blue) together with several cushion covers, two were tie-dyed and turned a bright indigo blue, others were cotton/polyester mix and became a faded jeans blue, the original settee is green, the one whole original cushion has been transformed into two back cushions with the dyed blue/green covers..... the ottoman and the red chair came from my mother-in-law's house. The ottoman has a new hand-sewn cover, the thick cotton fabric came from several swatches from the same road find. 

I have not yet started sewing with the new fabrics.....but once I do, I will keep you posted


Marti said…
Saskia, your use of color, your creative sense of style, your skill in making so much beauty in your home is a joy to behold.
Liz A said…
Well, thanks to Django for inspiring such wonderful makeovers ... and oh, what I wouldn't give for a stash of linen samples like that! Perfect timing for Patchwork in Perspective ... can't wait to see what becomes of it all ...
Patty said…
I'm sitting in awe reading this as I've been linen hunting too.
Your linen luck is so fine! As is your redo of sofa/ottoman! Then
I read Dylon Navy blue and I feel we must have melded somehow. I just
experimented with moons and dylon navy dye.

You're going to love how linen hand a needle thru butter!
Maria buysse said…
Hey saskia wat een creatieve opfrissing ,zo vind ik steeds koorden en touwtjes langs m,n wandelweg ,heb nu wel huis arrest knie meniscus ingreep gehad maar het hersteld goed ,hartegroet
Julie S said…
I too have a basket of found fabric and am waiting for it to announce its purpose. Unfortunately, I do not have a husband who readily says "yes" to my notions of home improvement. Although he does have a helluva pot of coffee ready for me every morning at 6 am! Been in radio silence for a few months but have always been reading, Saskia. Love.
Nancy said…
Okay, first of all, when I opened this post and the first pic came up - I thought is this her space or part of the Dwelling? Haha There was not enough perspective for me to tell, until I got to you words "Django's sofa" lol Now I get it! I love Your space. It is so inviting and calm, yet interesting. I love the blues, the splashy ottoman and artwork...and a full bookcase. sigh. Can't wait to see what you do with all of your finds (new and old). xo
Peggy McG said…
I am blog hopping, rabbit holing over from Jude Hill in a round about way. So perfect timing to be here and see your wonderful home and tiny precious Dwelling life, and fabric works, I am moving and struggling with downsizing. You just saved a cow collection and their cabinet home, and a fabric stash. Thank you!!
Mo Crow said…
Wow such good scores, your lounge room looks so inviting & what is that fabulous white flowering tree?
Saskia said…
well thank you Marti! after years of having veered towards muted tones, I am now very much back into loads of colour and enjoying this (for as long as it lasts)

perfect timing indeed, Liz; I'm looking forward to working with these in our new class & yes, Django's a great help;-)

isn't it just the greatest colour Patty? the linen-sewing is such a pleasure, there is no resistance whatsoever

sterkte met je herstel Maria!

well, I hope your basket has started singing by now Julie.....I salute your husband: making coffee every morning is no mean feat

hi Nancy, you think my house looks like the Dwelling, well I suppose it makes sense.....

hurray for the cows Peggy!

Mo: that is a hawthorn, in Dutch 'Meidoorn', literally May-thorn; shame you cannot smell the scent

Nancy said…
Saskia~ I fell asleep thinking how great your photos are of the dwelling and how they would make such a great book or series of books - with or without words. My mom had given my children these wordless books where the pictures tell the story and the child's imagination does the rest. Folks from the Dwelling could venture out into your beautiful yard and on and on my thoughts went! Thanks for you being you!
Sue McQ said…
The room looks so warm and relaxed. A perfect place to sit and stitch. Dogs are great sources of inspiration. Just ask them! (wink)
deemallon said…
What a transformation. I love that Django, even after his less-than-desirable use of the people-cushions, get his own little bed! The linen towel with animals is lovely -- i would not have been able to resist either. K and I bought a rug around Christmas time -- we'd been using one that'd been my mothers and was thread bare and then when we gave that to my sister, FINALLY getting our elephant print wool rug cleaned after poor Jack crapped all over it in his final weeks, put that down but it was ripped and waaaaay too small. So out we went! And, I can't believe what a difference a rug makes. It pulls the whole room together. And because it's big enough, no more sliding around every time we move the coffee table.

It's nice to use fabric we've had for years, isn't it?
Saskia said…
yes Nancy, a book.....I am struggling with that! have enlisted youngest son's help.
oh Sue, I cannot emphasize how much more I enjoy the room now...the men take it anywhichway, ha!
absolutely Dee, a rug can do that for a room, and yes, finally using those precious bits of fabric was a reward in itself



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