Well this is a difficult post. I’ve been sorting through some old backup files and decided I couldn’t put off sorting through a particular bunch of images any longer.
My father passed away a few years ago and I controversially decided to photograph his funeral. It was a decision that many in my family didn’t really understand, but fortunately they kept their muttering about it out of my ear shot. When stressed and emotional I’m not a person to cross.
In fact it was the stress and raw emotion that led me to pick up my camera. Looking through the lens helped place a level of unreality on the day providing a coping mechanism.
The day passed in a blur and afterwards the images provided a focus for the grief to flow. I’m a great believer in allowing yourself to grieve. Bottling it up doesn’t help anyone.
The shots are far from my best but they serve their purpose. I’ve not looked at them for quite some time but their effect on me is still strong. However they don’t trigger tears anymore, but a smile…
Go on… Look up. Yup up there, just above the post title. Can you see a change? There is a new page here on the blog.
I’ve decided to put up a page where you can find patterns and tutorials.
Why not pop over and have a look? Let me know what you think?
Yesterday I went shopping with Maytheweed and we had a ‘squee’ moment. We popped into a reasonably local fabric shop that also stocks some yarn. Now this shop is not known for ‘high end’ or ‘luxury’ yarns, so imagine our surprise when we found some of this…
Six 100g lots of this gorgeous squishy kettle dyed merino, AND IT WAS REDUCED! Now I should point out that I don’t mean 5% or 50p off, I mean seriously reduced. No, I’m not going to tell you by how much because you’ll hate us as a result.
There were three lots of this stunning blue and three of a similar colour way but in purples. All were swiftly paid for and put into bags before we even considered looking round the rest of the shop (no way were they getting the chance to change their mind on the price).
It was interesting to note (which we did later over a cup of tea) that I instinctively went for the blues and she went immediately for the purples. There was no humming, debating or envious looks at the others skeins, just a quick grab and pay. That probably says something deep and revealing about our personalities but I’ve not had enough tea yet this morning to speculate, instead I’m going to admire my new yarn and dream of the yummy things I can make with it…
Last weekend I decided to ‘tidy’ my dining room which also doubles as a study. This was not a particularly ‘good’ idea given I wasn’t well and it really was a big job. Well after much use of foul language the dining room is looking much better. Unfortunately this is mainly because all the stuff that needs sorting is now piled up in the lounge. This includes an old printer box.
Anyway as I sat down at my desk to have a nice cuppa tea this evening (and catch up on some blogs) I heard a strange noise behind me……
There was something in the box
I quickly grabbed my phone and started recording but ran out of memory. So there was a mad dash for the ipod to continue recording. I was just quick enough to catch this…
The something was getting out of the box…
My friend Ann has just published a new sock pattern over on Ravelry and her blog. It’s a toe up with a little mystery twist. The result is that you won’t be sure what it’ll look like till you try it. This is based on altering the pattern as the colours change with a variegated yarn, so every yarn will give you something slightly different.
I’ve decided to do my own little variation on it. A sock for my portable hard drive!
I’m using the yarn left over from a pair of socks I made last summer which moves through white, pale blue and lilac. I’ve chosen to use the white as the highlight colour. This means if the yarn is white I purl, anything else is a knit.
It’s coming along quickly and I expect to have it finished soon. Ideas like this make wonderful tv knitting
that I’ve given up knitting. It’s been ages since I blogged about it. So what have I been up to?
I decided I needed a stole rather than a shawl so I frogged the Huruni shawl and started reknitting.
The yarn is silk and ooooo it’s oh so soft and squishy…… I wonder what it will look like once blocked
Well I mentioned that when I visited Nicola yesterday and we indulged in some retail therapy which I thought I’d share. To be fair we both went with a ‘shopping list’ and stuck to it so it was only a little indulgent.
I wanted some of that beautiful red batik fabric with the chrysanthemum pattern on I used for my mothers craft roll. I simply fell it love with it and wanted some for myself. I’m sure it should be illegal to love a fabric as much as this…
I also love chrysanthemums, they are one of my all time favourite flowers and their smell brings back so many happy memories. Unfortunately I’m not able to grow them to the standard my grandfather did. Maybe one day I’ll work out his secret.
Add into the mix I’ve been hankering after a new work bag, something floppy with a shoulder strap, it’s no surprise that the idea of using this fabric grew in my mind.
I also bought a bundle of 6 fat quarters from the Back to Nature range. That’s them on the left with my chrysant fabric behind. I think they are also destined for bag making. Exactly what pattern I’m going to use isn’t yet decided (although Best of Friends by Lynette Anderson is a front runner).
Of course there is plenty of fabric there to make a few bags so I don’t need to fret about the decision to much. Besides I can always go back and buy more hehe……
Today I visited Nicola for some general sewing chat, meet the new puppy and to get some top tips for making little make up / nic nac bags.
Nicola is the queen of bag making and it was fascinating to hear some of her little tricks of the trade. I even made a little quilted bag! That’s it in the piccys – the cream one. No it’s not wonkey, it’s the terrible camera on my phone hehe. I also snapped it next to some similar bags which Nicola had already made. All in all I think it held up ok.
Naturally there were cups of tea, some fabric shopping and lots of cuddles with Jasper the new puppy. Of course this meant I had to undergo a full blown sniff inspection from my own dawgies when I arrived home.
Now all I have to do is remember how I made that bag and try to reproduce it without the guru at my side……
Among my friends we have a few sayings that tend to come up a lot. Two of them are :
“Amazon is our friend……”
“Amazon is evil……”
The first refers to when you find something on Amazon cheaper than you would pay in the shops. The second is for when you subsequently spend the money you’ve saved on more stuff from Amazon.
These facts of life recently led me down the path which had a Star Kitty Pincushion at the end (there is a link honest, you’ll just have to bear with me ok). I was online to buy a quilting book recommended by a friend and up popped another book on the evil Amazon. ‘It’s Quilting Cats & Dogs’ by Lynette Anderson. You know what happened next don’t you. Evil Amazon ‘forced’ me to buy it.
I then spent about a week browsing through it, generally admiring and dreaming about making some of these beautiful items. Then one evening I had some time and decided to get stuck in. It’s a little different to the one in the book as I didn’t slavishly follow the pattern. It’s also a much brighter kitty, the ones in the book are all in beautifully co-ordinated pastel shades, but I’m quite pleased with the results.
There are a few changes I’ll make when I do the next one (yup there will definitely be a next one) but over all I rather like my new kitty pin cushion.
There is something quintessentially English about drinking tea. It doesn’t matter where the tradition started, or where this wonderful plant is grown, as a nation we’ve made it ours. Oh coffee is popular and I have nothing against it – except I’m allergic so it makes me rather sick. There is always some at home for visitors, but for me it has to be a lovely cup of tea.
I usually have at least two varieties in the cottage so I can choose the one that best suits my mood. My favourite is Assam. Fabulous colour and a taste to dye for, especially when you’re soaked through and in need of warming up. Ceylon is delicate and easy going, perfect for a chilled out Sunday morning. Darjeeling is one I can take or leave dependant upon my mood. English Breakfast is an outstanding all rounder it’s impossible to object to. You get the idea.
All that said, how you drink tea is important as well. A plastic mug just won’t do. I know some people insist upon bone china, but given my beasties it’s rather impractical. Hence my choice is a decent ceramic mug or cup. I prefer a cup but sometimes only a mug will do as volume is important.
Enter my new breakfast tea cup and saucer. I found them in a charity shop recently and just fell in love. I love the colours and bold brush strokes. I also love the shape of the cup which will allow my tea to cool quickly so I can drink it all before I have to leave for work. The walls of the cup are thick enough to give it plenty of strength, but the over all effect isn’t chunky.
Of course it doesn’t just have to be for breakfast…… It works equally well when I get in from work. Speaking of which I do believe it’s time to put the kettle on again for another cuppa……