Thursday, 29 March 2012

String Greens - Finish-A-Long Finished!

The first quarter of the finish-a-long hosted by Rhonda aka Quilter in the Gap is drawing to an end. I put three things on my 'to finish list' and blogged about it here. Despite finishing the first item within about a week of the finish-a-long starting, I actually didn't get much further with either of the other projects.  The one I did finish I can now blog about properly. So drum roll...I introduce you to the String Greens quilt.

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Lots of yummy green fabrics in various strips.

I'd been seeing lots of lovely strip quilts over on flickr and thought I'd have a go at one myself. I've come to the conclusion that complicated, intricate piecing and me finished quilts are not for me. I much prefer making simple quilts because I stand a chance of finishing them. Is it boring though? To only want to make quilts with simply arranged strips, squares or triangles? This quilt was made from randomly cut bands of width of the fabric half yard cuts. As I didn't have enough half yard cuts I had to cut up fat quarters and to add a bit of interest I mismatched fat quarter cuts.  


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There are lots of lovely fabrics in this quilt from designers such as American Jane, Momo, Laurie Wisbrun, Kaffe Fassett, Denyse Scmidt and Valori Wells.

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You have to have a rolled up quilt shot don't you?

In case you're wondering this quilt is lap sized. It's bound in a bella solid in a shade of green I've forgotten. I didn't take any pictures of the back, but it's a Riley Blake (I think) green flannel with red and blue spots on it. I'm not convinced I did a very level job of trimming this quilt. I had a complete mental block - I welcome any tips or advice on squaring up tops prior to basting. There is also a dodgy area of binding where the ends met due to some of the dodgy trimming...But we'll over look a few little errors because it's snugly and just perfect to curl up under these spring days when the sun has gone in and there is still a nip in the air.

I can't wait to see what you've all been finishing!




Monday, 26 March 2012

No Sew When the Sun Shines!

As the title suggest I have not done any sewing since this nice weather has seduced me and my camera out doors. There is just so much to learn and so many things begging to be photographed. Like these seed heads


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Trying out some Macro Filters

 or these trees in the orchard

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Trees in bud in the orchard

 And this Robin was definitely posing! 

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Robin Redbreast singing along 

 In my defence I only went over to Waterperry to keep Mum occupied as she's torn a muscle in her shoulder - not sure how - and she hasn't to use her arm or shoulder until it's healed. The nice weather lures her out to the garden; where she invariably wants to do stuff. If she's out and about she can't be pulling weeds. After lunch at Waterperry Gardens, I took her off for a drive and we ended up at Otmoor. Despite it only being up the road from us, Mum had not visited the reserve before. No sooner had we arrived, someone told me they'd seen lots of frogs in a ditch. The frogs turned out to be common toads and the sunshine must have encouraged them out to mate. There was a huge ball of them.  I had never seen so many toads in all my life. A more serious photographer was almost in the ditch with his kit getting shots. I wandered over to have a look and he asked if I'd got any good shots and had I got a macro lens. At the moment my budget runs to a set of Macro filters. So when he said, 'Do you want a borrow my Macro lens to get a few shots?' I was stunned (and my lack of skill turned me into a gibbering wreck from this point onwards) at a complete strangers generosity and of course said, 'Yes, please!'. When he handed me a quite serious bit of kit, I was a bit overwhelmed. Thinking: Please do not let me go head camera first into the ditch. I was even more relieved this didn't happen when I got home and found out that lens costs well in excess of £1000!!!

Spring is in the air.
Toads getting jiggy with it. 


It did allow me to get a few good close ups of the toad love ball. Apparently in the centre of this will be one female, getting a whole lot more male attention than she probably wanted.  
The birds were out in full force at Otmoor and as well as a few usual suspects I took photos of my first Redpoll and Yellowhammer. 

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Redpoll

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Yellowhammer

Then today my after work drive took me up to Brill in Buckinghamshire. Where I took some pictures of it's most famous landmark.

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Brill Windmill up on the hill. Last time I photographed this the sails hadn't been painted.

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Love the white sails against the blue!

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So that, dear readers, is why I've not been sewing a stitch...

Friday, 23 March 2012

I'm It!

I've been tagged twice in the last week. I'm really behind with life at the moment - thanks to another of those 'turns' I seem plagued by at the moment. This latest one wiped me out for two whole days! :-( Big sorry to those emails I've still not responded to and I'm behind with blog commenting too.

Anyway, the first person to catch me was Judith so I'm going to start by answering her questions.

 1. What is your favourite ice cream flavour/brand? This will sound really boring, but I'm really happy with plain old Vanilla if it's Mackay's even better. I'm quite partial to Chocolate too and I'll give some of the more exotic flavours a go - like ones with bits of honey and ginger in them.

 2. What kind of stuff do you like to watch on telly? I loved 'Sherlock' when that was on and I'm really enjoying 'Homeland' too. I'll also watch any of those post apocalyptic drama's like 'The Walking Dead' and 'Survivors'.
 3. What are your favourite colour combos for fabric at the mo? I'm really drawn to a certain colour combination at the moment, but I don't want to say too much because I'm still finding the perfect fabrics to get creating and then I want to surprise you all. You'll either all go - wow! Isn't she inspired or Bless, her she must be colour blind! But as a little hint there will be some orange and purple involved.

 4 & 5. Who in your life do you most admire and why? Am I allowed to say my Mum? She's always been there for me during what has been some difficult times.
 6. What inspired you to first start sewing/quilting? 
Doing some patchwork at Primary School, when my class were involved in a project to make a hexie quilt for a local children's hospice. I loved the idea of taking bits of old fabric and sewing them back together to create something pretty and useful.

 7. What part of your body do you like the most? My eyes.


 8. Give me an example of something you have made that you are really proud of? This is the bit where regular readers will probably be thinking if she starts going on about that hexie quilt I'm leaving...so I'm going to say my garden! Redesigning it and planting it from scratch was amazing. I love it when people stop me over the garden gate to ask to take pictures or who the designer is. Ok - so I didn't lay the patios myself. But I designed everything. I'm apparently one of the few of the population that can see something in my head from a blank canvas. (I thought everyone could, but I'm told this is not the case.) It meant the people around me had to believe I knew what I was doing because nothing was on paper. In fact I wanted a larger summer house - everyone talked me out of it. Until the smaller one was up and they all admitted I was right and a bigger one would have been better...


View from the stone bench
My cottage garden.

 9. Would you describe yourself as more of a patchworker or a quilter, or both? Patchworker - definitely. Over the years I've made quite a few patchworks that have never seen light of day as a quilt. Sadly some of my best efforts ended up being cut up and re purposed or just thrown away, because they had no practical use without the quilting part.

10. What has been your favourite decade so far? Personally most decades have had good and bad bits; even the 1990's which I'm sure I thought were terrible - I tend to look back on more fondly with the passing of time. The decade 2000 - 2010 was pretty special though. My niece was born, I got over some major health problems that had plagued me through the previous 10 years, met Chief and got to do lots of amazing things like learn to fire eat.

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Me fire eating - most of the pictures of me attempting this are awful because each time I got it right I'd ask Clare if she got a shot and she said, 'oh sorry I was too busy watching!' because it is really mesmerising!

11. What are you most looking forward to this year? I'm not sure I am looking forward to anything. If I was going to the FQ retreat, I would say that, but as I'm not...

The Second person to tag me was Sarah

 1 Who did you blame for your last public fart? I'm not a farter. Belcher yes, so I've had no cause to blame anyone.

 2 What's your favourite TV theme tune and why.
My mind has been blank all day on this one.

 3 Tell me, what's on your 15 minute mix tape? I'm not a mix tape sort of maker. It's the sort of thing I'd get Chief to make for me.

 4 Roller boots or roller blades? Neither - because remember the bit with Bambi on ice...yeah that would be me only far less cute and graceful.


 5 If a cushion is a pillow what's a pillow? The thing on my bed that I lay my head on to sleep.

 6 Who is your Dr. (who)? David Tennant was pretty darn good, but this new Matt fellow is doing some good doctorly work.

7 If you don the ruby slippers and click your heels etc, where you gonna end up? Oh wouldn't that be cool. I could be somewhere different every day. Right now I want to go to the Falkland Islands and photograph wildlife. Tomorrow I may well want to be somewhere completely different.


 8 What fragrance is your fabric softener? No idea without looking - it's yellow if that means anything? 

9 Bananas - young and firm or old and soft? Young and firm. :-D


 10 Why IS a raven like a writing desk? I think the answer is there is no answer. Do I get brownie points from knowing this is a Lewis Carroll - Alice in Wonderland - reference?


 11 What was the last thing that totally grossed you out? The conversation I had with someone about how human bodies smell when they blow up and the associated red mist. Let's just say if I didn't already dislike liver, then I would never eat it again, now.

Now I suspect I've run out of people to tag, as potentially I could be tagging 22 people! So I've decided I'm going to post my 11 questions here and I'll link back to anyone who tells me they feel like playing?

 1. I'm into photography and you offer to take me somewhere for the day to get great photos - where are we going?
2. Do you have a party piece? You know some little skill or thing you could entertain everyone with at a party?
3. What's the best book you've read this year so far?
4. Which fabric do you think everyone should have in their stash and why?
5. You win your dream holiday - where are you going?
6. What's the one thing you've done, that you think I should add to my bucket list?
7. What's you're favourite way to spend your day if you don't sew!?
8. What was your favourite cartoon/children's show growing up.
9. Marmite - love it or hate it?
10. What are you going to make next?
11. You want to do something to cheer me up what will you do?

Monday, 19 March 2012

So that was my weekend!

Sometimes the weekends seem just too short. Lovely - but short.  Chief did get down on Saturday. A day later than I'd optimistically hoped. But given at one stage even Saturday was looking doubtful, I'm really not complaining! I'd booked a night at a hotel quite local to me. The one where we stayed in the suite I told you about in this post. They hadn't got any suites so I booked a standard double. (I looked at upgrade prices and for what you got it didn't seem worth the extra money.)  When we turned up at the hotel it was very busy so we were pleased to find a space near the front door quite easily. When we got out of the car we noticed in the reserved section was a space with my name on it (I didn't have chance to get a photo.) I thought what a coincidence someone else at the hotel with exactly the same name as me. (I don't have that common a name.) I even mentioned it to the receptionist who said, well if it has your name on it, it's ok for you to use!

At reception the computers were down. We had to wait a couple of minutes for them to check us in. There was lots of rushing out into a back room that apparently had the only available computer. Seconds later a receptionist gave me a voucher for £5 off of drinks because of the wait. Both Chief and I looked at one another because we've had longer waits than this before without vouchers. Not that we were complaining! Took ourselves off to our room and that appeared to be upgraded to the next room type up:


Our room

So we got the complimentary water, bath robes and more space. Chief said it's odd they didn't tell you they'd upgraded you, because normally hotels want you know.  And then I found a card in the room from the manager wishing me personally a great stay and leaving their business card in case anything didn't meet with my satisfaction. We didn't even get this in the suite Chief booked the other week. And then Chief exclaimed: 'You're flagged!'  'I'm what?'  

A couple of  years ago now I booked a room for Chief's birthday and to say I was not impressed with our experience was a big understatement. Chief asked me not to make a fuss, but as I checked out at reception I just asked the receptionist if they'd had some operational problems this weekend. His response had been along the lines: Well it's a bank holiday so I expect the staff have Bank Holiday mentality. This really wound me up.  This is a 4 star hotel. If the staff were working and not guests it would have been any other day for them. I'd paid to have a nice night away; not wait over 20 minutes for someone to provide us with towels in the leisure spa or wait even longer to be asked if I wanted tea or coffee at breakfast. So there was an email to the hotel chain with a long list of grievances - I mean you don't expect to put your fingers into a fruit bowl at breakfast to retrieve some fruit and find your finger sinks into a mouldy plum do you? The list went on. The hotel did apologise and offered me a return stay at a discount with a complimentary upgrade. We did make the return visit, but I hadn't booked a room since. Chief thinks this whole experience means I'm flagged on their systems as someone to keep happy! And if I am, I'm not complaining. It was jolly useful having reserved parking when we returned from a trip to the cinema (The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel) and the car park was still full and it was pouring with rain!


Mouthy Stitches pouch in use!

I'm hoping Ceri will be pleased to see the Mouthy Stitches pouch she made me put to good use and adding a splash of colour to the hotel bathroom. Inside I can fit everything I may want to take with me and then more!  

Sunday we spent a few hours in search of birds to photograph.  

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And even though the light was rubbish we did find a Red Kite or two ready to pose for us. We had a buzzard in a similar position that we failed to even take a blurry picture of on several occasions!

We also came across this skeleton at a nature reserve. We're not sure what the animal was - a small deer maybe as Chief (who got closer to it than me) said the teeth appeared to be those of a herbivore.

skeleton
The carcass had been stripped in situ leaving behind the fur underneath. 

And because after that picture I don't want those of a sensitive disposition to have sleepless nights I'm going to leave you with my bundle selection for the contest Katy over at I'm a Ginger Monkey is hosting along with Brenda of Pink Castle Fabrics.  I don't know why I've not entered any of these contests before as I'd happily spend all day putting fabric together in bundles rather than sewing it together into quilts. Although I have to say my big inspiration for this bundle is the idea of a spring table cloth or maybe a table runner and mats. Something ready for a yummy afternoon Easter tea.

Spring showers
Spring Showers

My first thought when I put this together was April Showers, but I wanted something with a bit of spring in it. So as spring is often a tad wet in this part of the world, I wanted to mix the two ideas together. The fabrics from Left to right starting with the top row are:


All the links above take you to the fabric at Pink Castle Fabrics. I may make another bundle, but first I've spotted some goodies I'd like to buy from Brenda so bye..........................




Friday, 16 March 2012

Somewhere Over the Rainbow...

In today's post I received these lovelies:

  Charms received!
Charms in a veritable rainbow of colours.

These were the charms from the Somewhere over the Rainbow swap on flickr. For those of you that haven't taken part in a swap like this before. 28 people were asked to send 56 x 5" squares in a designated colour. Emily, who ran this swap, sorted all the received squares into piles of two of each colour and we received back 2 of 28 different squares. I already have planned what to do with mine. I just need the time to get cracking and I really want to get a few other things squared away before I start. My night away over this weekend is looking doubtful now so maybe I will get some of those other things cleared up!

Did you read Archie the Wonder Dog today? This post and in particular the bit about Pinterest?  Concerning to say the least. Now don't get me wrong I pin. It took me a while to get into it and I do have a few reservations. For instance when Pinterest first came to my attention it was because another blog I follow (and a very well known one at that) wanted to highlight seasonal colour and she did this by showing photos on her blog that she had pinned on Pinterest. These were not her own photos and yes, there was a link back to Pinterest and I presume in turn, the original owner. But what baffled me is most people copyright their stuff on flickr and your average blogger would not dream of publishing other people's flickr photos without permission.  Many blogs I read have little bits in the side bar asking people not to publish words or photos without their permission. 

I even put a bit about this on mine, after I saw another blogger had used one of my pictures and mentioned me in passing, but there was no link to my blog or a mention that the photo was mine.  In fact I only found out about this when the blog owner left a comment on one of my posts that made me go and check out who she was and then I found my picture.  It wasn't a big drama, but I'd have liked to have been asked first - you know?   I'm pretty sure I'd have said, 'Yeah it's fine - thanks for liking my work'. Yet, when it comes to Pinterest people seem to think that once they've pinned something it becomes in their own domain.  And for this reason I've always been slightly concerned about Pinterest. Am I alone with this? 

Still now I best go to bed and clear all the stuff I have strewn on the bed, thinking I might be getting a night away over the next few days...

Thursday, 15 March 2012

Two in one day!

Blimey you hear nothing from me for days then two posts in one day! Nothing negative has happened to cause this bout of slacking. I think a lot of my attention has been else where. If you looked around my living room you'd see evidence of creative activity in the form of pouches cut out ready to sew. Scraps waiting to be played with and patterns ready to be realised. The reality is the only thing I've succeeding in started and finishing this week is this scarf:


Scarf!
Katia Triana Lux wool - in shades of berries with a bit of sparkle thrown in.

As I mentioned in this post, I am not a knitter. It's not a skill I've ever found easy or rewarding. So when I made my first scarf in just over an evening, I was ridiculously pleased with myself. I don't think you got to see the finished item:

Finished

The first scarf has ended up longer than the second. I suspect because the original pattern said to use size 11 American needles or 8mm and I assumed that the '8' on the end of some old needles I had, referred to the mm size. I don't know why I assumed this given the needles being used in the patter were clearly bigger than the one's I had! I don't think it's made a huge difference to the scarf construction as it looks the same as the berry coloured one, only longer.  Both scarves look much better in person because they look a bit scraggy laid out to photograph. Hopefully I'll be able to get some shots of me modelling one soon.

I definitely see more of these scarves in my future and might try out other similar yarns. The second scarf only took me a couple of hours to whip up.

Lovely mail turned up this week from Jennifer who blogs at 'Enchanted Bobbin' and I was certainly enchanted by the fabric she selected from her stash for my winnings in her recent give away. I love the pink and green combination.  I'm thinking these would look great in a spring inspired table runner. I'm loving these petals and think these fabrics might be just the ticket for something similar. 

My prize winnings!

Chief got back to the UK yesterday. I hadn't heard from him for quite a few days. In fact all the time he was away I was lucky if I got a two sentence email. It felt a bit odd not to get my usual morning text just after I'd arrived at work each day and even stranger not to get calls when he was making errands like popping to the shops.  We have a night away booked locally very soon. So we're both excited about that!


Oh, and before I go I googled Slack Alice just to find out where the reference comes from. It seems by saying I was a Slack Alice, I'd assumed (as many people do) that she was a girl fond of being a bit lazy and slack in her behaviour. The reality seems this expression comes from a 1970's song by the camp Larry Grayson, who Brits of a certain age will remember from: 'The Generation Game'. 


Just to clarify I have not been throwing my knickers in the air this week ;-)




Being a 'Slack Alice'

I'm not altogether sure who 'Slack Alice' was, but I've certainly been a Slack Alice this week when it's come to blog reading and writing. I probably have more than enough stuff to tell you about. And if I wasn't still in a slight Slack Alice frame of mind I'd be doing one Mahoosive blog post to fill you all in. But as I am, all that stuff will have to wait.


 

What I dare not let wait any longer is Liebster nominations. I've been lucky enough to be nominated for a Liebster award twice in recent weeks. The first nomination came from the lovely Sheila - Bluepatch Quilter. If you don't know Sheila and her blog, do go and check it out because she is a really talented quilter and often shares with us quilts she's made in the past, as well as quilts she's made more recently.  The first time I was nominated for the Liebster you only got to pick 3 blogs to nominate for the award. It was so hard because there were so many fab blogs that met the criteria. However, somewhere along the line someone's decided to change it to 5 blogs. You'd think the extra choice would make your job easier wouldn't you? Until you realise that in our little community that means an awful lot of Liebster's have been handed out and whilst it's ok to nominate someone again, I thought that maybe I should pick some great blogs that haven't had it or haven't had it recently. Top of the list was going to be Tanya over at Second Chance, only while I was procrastinating on my other choices Tanya nominated me!!! So I thought I'd best stop procrastinating and nominate some great blogs for you to check out if you don't already!

So in no particular order:

Ceri over at Inspired by Felix  Ceri made me the amazing pouch in the first round of Mouthy Stitches. I have a night away coming up at the weekend and can christen the lovely pouch then. I'm just as excited about getting to actually use the lovely pouch, which is already part packed, as I am about going away!

The next blog I want to nominate is Indiana Dreams. I came across Helen's blog when I was partnered with her in the Mouthy Stitches swap.

Next up is Suzan's blog Quiltitis, although if you read this post you may find yourself wanting to buy something bright and colourful from John Lewis ::wink:: ::wink::

My fourth nomination is: Jill who blogs at Just Jill I'm fortunate to own a lovely bag made by Jill and she is a super talented bag maker and quilter.

So I'm going to stop at 4 with a reminder that I use my blog roll as my reading list. So any of the blogs on my blog roll really are a good read and if there are any you aren't familiar with, I urge you to have a look.

The acceptance conditions are This award is given to bloggers with less than 200 followers and there are rules-

*Thank your award presenter on your blog: Thank you Sheila and Tanya. :-)
*Link back to the blogger who presented you with the award
*Copy and paste the award to your blog
*Present the Liebster Award to 5 blogs that have fewer then 200 followers that you think deserve to be recognized
*Let them know by leaving a comment on their blog



And because I don't like to blog without a photo here is a picture of some vintage stuff I was sent for my birthday: 



Vintage gifts.

The gloves are tiny and hand sewn. They came from Woodstock, a north Oxfordshire town which has a long standing history of glove making.

When I get my act together I'll show you the good mail I've had week. Some works in progress and the knitted second scarf I've completed!

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Hair - Re do

Today I've had a hair re-do.  I've gone from split ends and long and straggly to shorter and...well I'll let you decide for yourself.

A Restyle

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Wonder what Chief will make of it. He's abroad at the moment for work. It means limited contact. I have managed to warn him in a very brief e-mail that I was booked in for a re-do. Otherwise he'd probably return just wondering how long he'd really been away.  I haven't told him about my intention to get some blue flashes put in my hair...



Brown Paper Packages Tied Up With String!

Like most people I love getting a parcel in the mail. However, there seems something even better about it if it's a brown paper package tied up with string. So I was over the moon yesterday to arrive home from work and find a box sat in my porch.  When I unwrapped the protective outer layer I found this:

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What is it about a brown paper package tied up with string that makes me want to sing like Julie Andrews in the Sound of Music?

This was the prize of crafty goodies I won recently from Lyns blog: Everyday Life.  I love to stop by Lyn's blog because she takes the most lovely photos and reading her blog posts is like visiting all these places with her.  Anyway, back to the prize: Inside the lovely wrapping was an even lovelier prize.

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Oooh a fabric basket in spring greens and blues with some yellow tissue paper on top. Wonder what's underneath?

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There may have been some excited squealing when I saw the spring theme continued into all these lovely goodies!


So I emptied out the basket which was holding an awful lot of crafty swag!



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Buttons and trimmings and threads, Oh My!

And that wasn't all.

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Katia Triana Wool in shades of green and instructions to make a scarf like the one in the picture.

I'm sure I must have mentioned in the past on my blog that knitting is the one skill that has eluded me. I can't cast on, I can't cast off, I can just about do the one standard plain knitting stitch, but even then I get problems with tension and dropped stitches. Mind last time I tried to knit I was probably in my teens (Discounting last year when the woman at The Chilterns Craft Fair made me have a go with her huge knitting needles.). Anyway, I asked Mum what 'Garter stitch' was and she said, she thought it was the plain one I could do. I had a quick google to make sure.  Then searched on You Tube for some video's of people using this wool, which is actually like a mesh net.  I wish I'd thought to take some pictures of how it looked before I started, because start I did.

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Yes, I'm doing actual knitting!

Ignore my slobby clothing and twenty chins. I was concentrating hard and would have dressed for the pictures had I known Mum was going to ignore my request to cut my head out of shot. (Doubly ironic because often she cuts my head out of shots when I don't request it!)

In a few hours I'd managed to use up pretty much all the wool up. This was close to that stage!

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You can just make out the meshy texture of the yarn.

So there you go I have knitted a scarf! Me, the girl that's knitting attempts have always been so woeful and the subject of much mirth and ridicule, has now made something that looks like it required a lot more skill than it did. In fact the fiddliest bit was opening up the loop in the mesh each time to knit with it. I just need to do a few more rows and cast off and then I am done. 

Thanks again Lyn for such a cracking prize and getting me to attempt knittings!

Monday, 5 March 2012

Were you just all too polite to tell me?

Regular readers will know I've spent the weekend getting excited about making a couple of camera/wristlet type pouches as per the Keyka Lou pattern. But not one of you mentioned in the comments, that I'd put, not one, but both pouches together wrong!

So picture the scene last night. I'm sat on the sofa watching Homeland and teasing Hadley, by email, about swapping her prize out for some brown fuggly fabric (which I'm sure is what she was secretly hoping to win.) and I picked up the pouch I made for me and admired it for about the 100th time that day, when I realised there was a design flaw. The external pocket on the flap would empty the contents of the pocket every time the pouch was opened. Not to mention the strap was pulling the pocket out of shape. Then it dawned on me. It was not a design flaw. I'd put the pouch together wrong. The pouches were still usable, just wrong. I have plenty of pouch and bag making experience, so I'm not sure how I managed to mess this up!

Homeland finished, I took myself off to bed to read for a bit, before switching the light out to sleep. Suddenly I was wide awake. I could not live with such a flaw in the pouch let alone send off one of them to Hadley.  So I put on the light and went downstairs to get my unpicker and the pouch and brought it back to bed. I thought I'd just unpick mine and see if it looked like a dogs breakfast after I'd sewn it back together the right way. Of course once I'd unpicked it all, (and why is it: should I ever need to unpick something, the stitches are so flaming strong they're the equivalent of stitchy superglue?!) I couldn't wait until the next day to fix it. So I clambered out of bed and sewed it back together again.  But I went back to bed having salvaged the pouch.

So when I got in from work I set about unpicking and redoing the prize pouch. The linen blend fabric and Klona was a lot less forgiving than the DS cotton. There may have been swearing. There is definitely wonk.

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You can't see how wonky the rounded ends have turned out one side. Unfortunately close clipped notched seems do not really like being turned upside down and matched to entirely different notched curved bits.

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Pockets where they should be!

I'm still not happy with the wonk in the seams. But just when I was about to throw the towel in and start again I discovered this:

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Co-ordinating thread 

I have an empty bobbin and this much thread left. I can't risk taking Hadley's pouch apart any more or remaking from scratch because this is the only thread I have.   If I had a picture of Edvard Munch's - The Scream I'd be inserting it now with a caption underneath saying: 'This is exactly how I felt and probably looked at the moment I realised I had to accept the pouch as is!'

So apologies Hadley. I hope you can still use it some how. I'll include something brown in the package to make up for it :-)


Sunday, 4 March 2012

My own Keyka Lou Wristlet Camera Pouch

If you're looking for what was in the box and who won my giveaway pop along here.

In Saturday's post, I told you about these lovely goodies I won when Alison at Little Island Quilting had a give away.

  Lovely winnings
Denyse Schmidt Prints - not sure of the range? But one of those specific to certain stores like Joann's me thinks.

I also told you how Alison had instructed me to make not hoard and how I was agonising over what to make. Today I cut into three of them to make myself a Keyka Lou pouch, like the one I made yesterday for the giveaway. They come together super quickly (which means you could make yourself one in every colour and fabric combination your heart desires.) 

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Won't this be perfect for spring?!


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I love this pop of graphic print inside. 

So Alison I'm not hoarding. I have been thinking a lot about why I buy fabric lately. I'm not really hardcore hoarder. I either buy fabric for specific projects - some of which take ages to happen or I buy fabric because I know it will be a useful stash addition for when I suddenly get the urge to make a bag or a pouch. One thing I do know for sure: There is something deeply satisfying about taking some bits of a fabric that speak to you and making them into something fun and utilitarian. Even better when there is some left over to play in the next perfect project. 

Hope you've all had a great weekend!  Oh and pay it forward friends: I've decided what I'm making you and the pattern is ordered... :-)

And the contents of the box are....Winner Announced


So did you guess correctly what was in the box? The first person that did was Hadley. In fact she was so on the money I am convinced when I'm at work she sneaked into my house and had a peek in the box.

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Ignore the elastic that's not relevant. If anyone would have said a view finder and elastic I'd have probably just given them the prize ;-)

When I first saw that Melody Miller print I really wanted to get some when it was released. I got all excited because I knew I still had my view finder and reels - most of which were Mum's and most of which are of places where she travelled to.

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Most of these reels are from the 1960's when Mum got to do quite a bit of travelling with an Australian friend. Sadly she never made it to Australia with her, so must have made do with the view finder reel instead!


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I'm not sure what happened to Mum's ViewMaster - this is mine the test reel that came with it has an image of Buck Rogers amongst others!


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A view master view finder reel for Annie - I think I was given this a present. 

 Then when I went to look for it, I had a horrible remembrance of a conversation I'd had with Mum. The one where I told her (during a mass decluttering) to give the shoe box full full or reels and view finder to my niece. I say horrible because my niece is blessed to have parents and extended family that can get her pretty much whatever she wants. She is not a spoilt brat, I hasten to add. However, her parents and in turn her, often view stuff I would call treasure as 'junk'. All of a sudden I felt like I didn't deserve any of that view finder fabric. I felt this even more so when I went into her bedroom and found a view finder reel sticking out from under the bed. I picked it up and was about to give her a hard time about it when I realised it was something that had been given away somewhere like MacDonald's. I asked her if she had my view finder and reels and she said she wasn't sure. Her best answer was: 'Um they might be in the loft' (which is a euphemism for 'My Dad probably threw them out.') Then she added, 'Or maybe my dad threw them out.'

So imagine my joy a few weeks back when I was helping mum declutter her room - she has a tendency to hold on to anything and everything. And under the bed - covered in some fluffy bunnys - was the Birthdays shoe box containing my view finder and the reels.  Far from not deserving the Melody Miller View Finder Fabric. I sort of felt I had a right to it. Although being on a self imposed fabric diet I restricted myself to one fat quarter cut. (For the time being at least!)

A fat quarter cut I've turned into this camera/wristlet pouch as per the Keyka Lou pattern.  And it's this very pouch (along with the fob hard ware) that the lucky winner...er wins.

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Excuse terrible pics light is bad today and it's pouring with rain so no outdoor shots!

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I used some shocking pink Klona to give it a nice burst of colour.  It has a handy little pocket on the outside.

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I really recommend this pattern. Even if you don't have a camera to fit inside it would make a great little pouch for nipping out for a meal and you can make them quite quickly!

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So without further ado I grabbed a hat ( of which I have many) and set about entering everyone who entered with bonus entries for anyone who made a reference to view finders. (I couldn't really use RNG because of how to give the numbers for the bonus entries.)

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I don't think we've had a decent summer since I bought this hat, at least it's been used for something!

 Then I told Mum to stop cooking the Sunday lunch and do the draw. Which really amused her. (Even more so when I told her I'd be photographing the whole procedure.)

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She did a good swoosh around of the tickets and grabbed one!

And the winner is...

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Yes, Hadley has done it again! She really is the luckiest woman in blogland I'm sure. I was laughing so much when I took this picture, Mum thought I was having a funny turn, hence the slightly bemused look on her face!