Eye Candy for Fabric Lovers and a Puzzle!

Hi everyone,

Be warned! This post is full to busting of fabric photos. I make no excuses, my jaw is still on the floor since my daughter arrived home from India last night. I have been spoiled, THOROUGHLY spoiled and I just had to share some photos with you so you can imagine what I will be getting up to over the next few months. You have got no idea how pleased I am that she travels light with a large suitcase!

She was very fortunate to be invited to spend two months with her wonderful local host who made sure she ate well, travelled widely and generally got a taste of what life is really like in India with lots of fun along the way. It has to be the best way to see a new country, sample local culture and customs and make the most of any trip abroad.

If you want to read more about her trip, you can find it in her blog Sun and Cake.

Where’s the fabric, I hear you call….

The instructions were simple, please bring me fabric, sari silk, cotton, batiks, anything that I can make into lovely things. Here are some of the sari silks which are all from Salem in southern India.


I’m going to have so much fun with these.


The photos really don’t do them justice. The shimmer and lustre and silky softness is gorgeous.


Aren’t those tassels lovely?




There are several designs on each piece and they are all huge!



Now for the cottons, also from southern India Smile.


Exciting times are ahead!


The quality is fantastic, perfect for patchwork and quilting.




This style can be found on wall murals and works of art.


This one has an interesting chequered weave which doesn’t show up to the naked eye.





Some are block or screen printed with one or more dyes.




This one uses the batik technique with wax. There’s a whole rainbow of underlying colours.


This one is hand painted with gold dye.


The purple parade. You all know I love purple Smile


And finally, some hand painted cottons from Jaipur in northern India.


The pattern is very sparkly Smile


The north Indian fabrics are the same good quality, brilliant for all sewing projects.

Now for your puzzle….

This was another of my requests and I really didn’t expect my daughter to find one, let alone bring one home. I’m going to show you a few detailed photos and I want you to guess what it is that she brought me for my birthday which was on Valentine’s Day while she was away. All of the embroidery has been done by hand.












It would be impossible to show all of the details here so I’ve only picked out some of them. I have no idea how old it is but it is definitely not new. I can only imagine how many hours went into all of the stitching and I’ll treasure it forever Smile.

So, do you know what it is? Would you like to guess?

Have fun guessing!

And finally…. have you heard of the Holi Festival? If not, you can read about it here and see images here.

This is a photo of my daughter on the right and her host (the best tour guide in India) on the left during the Holi Festival. Fun, fun, fun Smile


Oh, to be young again!

Avis x

Leave a comment


  1. Wow! Didn’t she do well. And you’ve lots of pieces that work well together. No idea what you beaded item is. You will let us know?

  2. Denby

     /  March 19, 2014

    Wow!! Fantastic. You’ll never be out of your sewing room now. Can’t wait to see what you make.

  3. Back in the early ’70s I did lots of embroidery on the clothes I made for myself……afterall…..it was the “Age of Aquarius”!!!! LOL! And I do spy some embroidery framed mirrors on the puzzle piece. The mirrors I used were imported from India!!! The silks are………….ahhh-maze-ing!!!!!!!! It will be a while before you dare to take scissors to any of them, I suspect!!!!!
    What a fantastic trek for her!!!!! And a very belated “Happy B’day”!!!!! Hugs…………………….

  4. I LOVE fabric!!! Thanks for the cool post 🙂

  5. I’m suffering from severe fabric envy…. and the embroidery detail on your Mystery Object is just stunning.

    • I’ve tried to count how many different types of beads there are but failed. As for your fabric envy, I know the feeling 😆

  6. Beautiful Fabrics sure worth posting. Blessings, Mtetar

  7. My mum and I are dreaming of and planning a trip to India. If I showed her your fabric photos, she would be packing her bags today! Beautiful!
    How did your daughter get all that in a suitcase? How will you decide what to make? How will you bear to cut them up? (I saw a lovely bedspread in a recent edition of Period Living magazine.)
    I have no idea what loveliness your mystery gift is.

    • So many questions LOL! She travels so light. I’ve known her to go abroad for two weeks with a laptop sized back pack. That way, there’s no need to wait for luggage at the other end. So, this time, she was sent away with a large suitcase, virtually empty and came back with it just inside the weight limit 🙂 I have several ideas already but there is plenty to play with. The sari silks are all 2.5 metres and the cottons are mostly 2 metres with a couple 1 metre bits. I have no problem cutting up cloth once I’ve decided what to do with it but I’ll be a bit more tentative with the silks because I know they won’t be easy to sew. I imagine fine needles and tension adjustments will be required.

  8. Wow! What treasures!

  9. Gorgeous fabrics! I’m sure your daughter has got a sore back now from carrying her suitcase. 🙂 I’ve got an idea about your mystery object because I’ve seen pillow covers made like this. Suppose yours is a little larger than that. 😉

  10. Oh my goodnes…..I am in fabric heaven!!!

  11. They are beautiful! I’m going to guess – and this might be completely ridiculous – the headdress or blanket from an elephant?? I know, that’s just crazy….

    • Your are so close and yet completely wrong at the same time. You’ll see what I mean when I reveal the whole thing soon 🙂

  12. claire93

     /  March 20, 2014

    I think I’m going to send MY daughter to India with an empty suitcase lol
    Wow – loads of gorgeous vivid fabrics, you really have been spoiled. I’m guessing the embroidered and beaded piece is some kind of long dress/tunic?

  13. Holy cow, what a lot of gorgeous fabric!!!!! I would just want to look at it, not cut it up and sew with it. AMAZING that she was able to bring it all back with her. Not a clue what the beautiful mystery is, but I can see it is a treasure.

  14. OMG!!! Avis, what a gorgeous collection of fabrics. What a wondeful daughter you have. I have been to India but sadly didn’t take a nearly empty suitcase. It was at a time when I wasn’t sewing but I did get to buy my own sari. The ladies from the village we were staying in then came to measure us and took the end piece of the sari to make into the little top that is worn underneath. It was all sewn by hand. I am loving all your gorgeous photos. I’m not sure but I am guessing your mystery object is a decorative blanket for an elephant maybe??

    • I’ve always admired sari fabrics so I’m pleased to have some now. I haven’t been to India but the more I hear about it, the more I’d love to go. Again, you are so close with your guess but miles away at the same time. All will be revealed soon 🙂

  15. Your new fabrics are gorgeous. I bet your daughter really loved celebrating Holi. How funny that we both posted about Holi on our blogs at the same time but our inspiration came from different sources.

  16. Oh! Wow! Such a fabric feast!!! Thank you for sharing all those photos! I would have to guess the embroidered piece must be some kind of wall hanging..I can’t imagine a table cloth or wearable with so much embellishment! I look very forward to seeing it in all it’s glory, tho!!! 🙂

  17. oh oh OHHHHH that is a wonderful collection of new fabrics!!! I adore the cotton the most and I gotten an idea for a piece of silk I have lying around. Thank you for the inspiration!

    • Now I’m intrigued 🙂

      • In 2001 I went to Syria for an art history trip. (Most of the places in the daily news I visited and it is heartbreaking to see the country destroyed) I bought a gorgeous green and golden silk tablecloth that has been in a cabinet ever since. What If I turn that cloth into a whole cloth quilt? I think I could pull it off this summer!

        • Oh wow! That sounds amazing. Will you quilt by hand or machine? The sari silks are going to be a real challenge because they are so slippery. Even sewing them is going to be difficult I think, never mind the quilting. I might start with some small projects first.

          • I think I will be quilting by machine. This silk is not so slippery, actually a little bit rough. I have no idea how to tackle this fabric. I will do research first. The fabric is a souvenir to a wonderful and inspiring trip and I would like to be reminded of it more often. Maybe I should turn it into a wall hanging so I will see it every day. Oh, I just have way too many plans! LOL!

  18. WOW! What amazing pictures:) you could lay down and roll in it! Lol. Thanks foe sharing, what a delight:)

  19. What a fabric heaven! Those colours and patterns really are stunning! 🙂


I really enjoy reading your comments. Have a lovely day :-)

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