This is a job I've been too frightened to tackle. Sewing all the pebbles together. The pebbles took a fair amount of time to make, but I did finish them a while ago and put them in a glass bowl somewhere I pass all the time, so that I could get comfortable with them and take some of the worry away. The truth is that I was anxious the finished article would fall short of what I hoped to achieve and that it wouldn't be 'special' enough. But yesterday I decided I just had to take the plunge - after all, this was meant to be part of a wedding present for my godson and his wife. They were married at Christmas .... The anxiety had been heightened because I had tried to make them a felt table-runner and was disappointed with it, fiddled about with it and made matters worse. In the end I chopped it up and made a cushion cover out of it and it looks quite nice. It was just never meant to be a table runner!
I'm sure my lack of confidence is exacerbated because I'm largely self-taught and work in isolation. I have a wonderful friend nearby (Anne) who is herself an extremely talented needlewoman, who can always be relied on to boost my ego. But I have begun to think she completely lacks discrimination and that her word is not to be relied upon, because she professes to love everything I do. Oh, everyone needs a friend like Anne!
So yesterday, with the sun filling the sky, the third lot of washing billowing on the line, I gritted my teeth, gathered everything I needed for the job, plugged my ears into Radio 4 and just bloomin'-well got on with it. I was nervous, but arranging the pebbles calmed me down a bit and once I started stringing them together I began to enjoy myself. The (nearly) finished article I'm quite pleased with. Just got to tie off and trim the ends of the threads and I'm done. I have my usual internal battle with symmetry and neatness - I'm sure the slight waviness half way down adds to the charm. Makes it look more like the bed of a stream, doesn't it?
Well, of course, the main thing is that Will and Carla like it, and can forgive me for taking so long to come up with a present!