A Strange Time …..

I’m pretty sure we all go through times in our life when we feel clueless about life no matter how experienced we thought we were. My personal roller coaster has been being out of work following a life changing experience, many ups and downs with some days being horribly dark (you know the type)  have culminated in my starting a new job last week wth a company who have been on my radar for many years and for all the right reasons. To be honest I would have choked on my cuppa had I been drinking one when Jane my new boss called me the day after my interview to say I’d got the job and how excited they were to have me coming on board. ME, silly, crazy, (apparently funny), quirky I’m an artist don’t you know darling me!!!!

No warmer welcome could have waited me and now 2 weeks in my roller coaster is on the rise. I am working with my most favourite client group lovely reader.  I am a pretty highly qualified support worker for vulnerable people but my specific group now is Older People.  I LOVE LOVE the group. They are funny, talented, rude, intolerant and just gawjus!  If that weren’t enough for me my ladies will sit and talk all things crafty till the cows come home HOORAH!

This group of people in our society are so over looked time and time again in the UK.  The wealth of knowledge sitting inside their heads just waiting to be shared with any one of us who cares to ask leave me humbled.

In just 2 weeks I have seen works of art made by their very own hands, some many years ago and some only last week. I have noticed the ones who have art in their life, be it sewing, knitting, gardening, baking or the likes are the ones whose emotions sit closest to the surface but also have the most life about them.

Maybe us young pretenders with our strange roller coaster lives have that to look forward to.  Being the ones who are more ‘with it’, ready to share, love and laugh.

For me in summary, being a creative has what I thought was its cross to bear – being an emotion pendulum but now I know it’s that very cross, that funny type of madness we share that will ensure our future will be wonderfully colourful, vibrate, textured and just down right FUN!

Even when I’m in ‘mad’ phase I can squeeze out some creativity. For beautiful Amelia the newest addition and first of the next generation in our clan, Great Neice an Auntie Samantha blanket 😍

Dreadnought School of Fashion ….

What a funny name for a fashion school BUT just look at these beauties found in a local charity shop. I paid pennies for them and although I’m not convinced I will ever use them they were just waaaay too fantastic to let go begging and in such top condition too!

Harking back to the days when almost all ladies knew how to sew, actually not just sew but design and create fantastically crafted garments.

truly wonderful find me thinks 😍

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Suffering For My Art ….. Final Countdown

Now I did actually crack on and do my sewing and jolly happy I am too with the performance of my overlocker, made the jersey an absolute breeze.

This said I am going to change the neckline a tad, not happy with how it sits on me. I have rather broad shoulders and shall we say NOT a swan like neck, therefore if a neckline is too round it makes me look like I have no neck at all, not flattering. Other than that I am really happy with this make and am certain the top will get plenty of varied use.

Finding the sewjo to get this minor adjustment sorted will be the trick. Within hours of almost finishing I was hit with one of those super winter virus things which means yesterday was my first day up and dressed. Currently sporting the panda look that is the usual for me after illness ( why do people like to point out how poorly I look when actually I feel loads better)? Am still a bit wobblie on the old legs and pretty weak and feeble hence the lack of sewjo.

Anticipate this weekend may offer a window of feeling not so sorry for myself to get that last adjustment made :)

Hope you are all well and warm brrrrr snow trying to sneak into South England ;) and may the sewjo force be with you. X

Suffering For My Art …. Part 2 Pending

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I should call it a premonition or maybe more likely an educated guess …. The whole sprawling on the floor thing yesterday took its toll and today I can barely move …. that’ll learn ya I hear you shout!

So Part 2 pending and pending any further stupid decisions on my part THE top will be completed tomorrow and I hope to have pictures of my triumph :)

Take care all in Blighty given the threat of coldest night in 3 years. If you have an elderly neighbour, can you spare a couple of minutes to check they are warm and have eaten? Please do if you can xx

Suffering For My Art ….. Part 1

After a lovely pot of tea with an even lovelier Amy (LA) at The Priory in Dunstable


yesterday I resolved to make a start on an old favourite. Met LA at one of my sewing workshops some time ago, she is an accomplished creative herself who suffers ‘writers block’ just like me! It was this tea and chat that made me decide to pull my finger out and try to find a jersey fabric that would suit the proposed batwing top.

Mission accomplished, a very light and fluid jersey that will suit many seasons I have set to the prep part. After what felt like a lifetime of trying to get the said fluid fabric to rest on my kitchen worktop otherwise known as my cutting out room, it became quite obvious the attractive fluidity of the fabric was now becoming a distinct pain in the backside :/

After several moments of employing the breathe and centre approach I had a full on tantrum which worked wonders. Merlin Moss the Monsterous pup was quivering in the wake of many expletives, this felt like the perfect time to evict him from the kitchen and hit the floor.

For those more able bodied than myself this may not seem so radical but for me and my titanium hip it’s living on the edge. Sprawling around on the floor knees paining something rotten I finally got the fabric under control, shame the same can’t be said for my body :)

Pinning and cutting completed just the wee task of getting back up. Thank goodness I have work surfaces both sides, with a bit of a pinball action I was upright again. Sore, stiff and satisfied …… I simply won’t be beaten by a piece of fabric EVER!

Assuming I can actually get out of bed tomorrow the make will commence and I hope to have part 2 ready to offer for your perusal.

Have a super Saturday evening dear reader and may you too be triumphant with any creative capers this weekend. Xx

Oh Come All Ye Faithful …. Creatives

We’re artists you know dahling! (Dahling should be said the Edina from Ab Fab way).

How on Gods green earth did I ever live without an over locker!!!???

DD1 has a new to her sofa that is a distinctly uninteresting colour but most functional. She requested some scatter cushions, to which I agreed and then promptly did nothing about :)

Whilst visiting this weekend past I allowed DD1 the honour of choosing some fabric from my vintage stash …… Uh Ha I am a toptatstic Mum sometimes. My eldest also an Artist Dahling, chose a vintage Laura Ashley and a French barkcloth. The latter is a bit delicate being at least 60 years old but hey oh let’s see how it lasts.

She did also choose an even older poppy fabric but for some reason I just couldn’t make myself take my scissors to it …. Bad Mum now ;)

Anyways, 4 varying sized feather cushions also from stash are now fashionably dressed in vintage ready for relocation to Northamptonshire. With the advent of my wonderful overlocker the task took a whole hour. Pretty darn chuffed.

As for the Oh Come All Ye Faithful title ….. Seemed seasonably appropriate and that’s the long and short of it but as you too are an Artist Dahling I know you will understand the meanderings and frivolities of a creative mind :)

Higgeldy Piggeldy….

Due to the distinct lack of sewing I have decided to post a couple of things that have made me smile recently, really to stay in the loop with blog land :)

Winter starts in a couple of days and it has been unseasonably mild in Blighty but we have enjoyed some awesome sunrises, here’s one captured just a few days ago.

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DD1 is an Art and Design Teacher (think I’ve mentioned this once or fifty times) she was at a lose end one evening last week and made me this wonderful picture. There are so many beautiful things going on in it, I can stand and look at it for ages. Lucky me :)

Simon and Garfunkel are quoted in here ...

Simon and Garfunkel are quoted in here …

Darling Dellis at curlsnskirls sent me a fantastic package, in there was an owl fabric that I HAD to use immediately it is so sweet and luckily enough I was putting up the Christmas decorations so it was put to use as a table cloth and it’s perfect for the job alongside the girls Christmas stockings ….. They are 20 and 24 but still apparently need their stockings. In fact it works rather well as they are happy to forego a big pressie this year so long as they get their stockings ;). Dead handy given we are tightening our belts a bit in readiness for our Silver Wedding in February and my 50th in June. Eeeeek 50!

Well they do say you’re as old as you feel or the man you’re feeling, and my man is younger YEEEEEHA!

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Happy Christmas everyone xxx

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Passing It Along At Last ….

DD1 and DD2 wanted an excertion down to Walthamstow yesterday and despite the miserable Autumn weather it really didn’t dampen the trip.

Tint in place and waiting .....

Tint in place and waiting …..


Having our eyebrows threaded and tinted with a bunch of lovely ladies at Naz we set to looking at what joyous winter fabrics were on offer.  Well DD1 and I did, DD2 hasn’t quite got the bug yet so she yo yo’d between the market stalls providing entertainment for the locals as she bartered like a professional for her purchases.

DD1 and I don’t need to worry about losing DD2 her laugh carrys over a crowd without difficulty and given the Eastend banter that is so readily available on a London market, she was laughing enough that her location was known more accurately than having a tracking device on her :)

Some wonderful wool mixes are available right now and SAEEDS never ever disappoints. He has such an eye for what is on trend so you are pretty well guaranteed to get whatever you need, want or desire there and all at very reasonable prices.

Whilst wizzing around in there like whirling dervishes we saw Did You Make That? With her lovely Ella.  Ella is as lovely in the fur as in her pictures … A real little honey.

The owner of SAEEDS tipped me the wink that he has some spectacular wools coming in next week and knowing his taste, will be bang on the money…. in texture, colour, quality and price.  So if you are in Walthamstow make a point of popping in to take a look.

DD1 found a perfect wool mix for a smart work skirt ….. Just one minor problem, that being after one attempt at teaching her to sew clothing several years ago, which resulted in WW3 we have never gone back down that path of Mother passing along knowledge.  This is highly remiss of me given that my abilities are down to my own darling late Mum bothering to take the time to teach me.

Nettle grasped this morning we set to ….. right from the beginning of reading warp,
weft, tailor tacks and so on we spent many hours working at a steady pace and I have to say as a proud Mother, by gum I think she has got it! The all important hand finish to hem is being done at home as she had started to get pretty tired but I think you will agree from the pictures she did a sterling job.  Matching the check superbly at all seams, invisible zip and perfect darts …… my girl did good.

So I have finally made a start to passing the knowledge along,  next step is to get DD2 engaged enough but hey oh, let’s not hold our breath ;)

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Wonderings and Wanderings

Well Dear Reader,

What an odd few weeks it has been. You know the whole life thing getting in the way of creating wonders.

I have found myself wondering what now? Not what now as far as creating goes, as a fellow ‘I’m an artist darling’ we always have something or ten in our heads :) More wondering where the life journey is taking me next. A few things up in the air right now and I am letting myself go with the flow which is not a natural position for me to take but hey ho, why fight it? New beginnings and adventures lay just around the corner I am sure, along this wandering path that is life!

I’m doing some temp work right now which many would consider risky but I have to say suits beautifully during this period of wondering and wandering ;) Gives me time to consider my options of which there are of course many. Not emotionally tied to an employer is strangely liberating albeit a little nerve testing. One thing is for sure, I know I am alive not moving from one day to the next in auto pilot.

All this has had an impact on the creating bit. Crochet is going great with many jobs on the go. I love crochet as it takes no setting up (I am not in a place big enough for a separate sewing room) but I do miss my first and true love, sewing. I even bought an overlocker at last but still haven’t tested it. Note to self : pull your finger out woman and give it a wizz

Finally made a rag quilt, saw one an age ago and loved it but had no good reason to make one but now my dear friends baby girl is due any day I had the chance, I am so very pleased with it. 100% cotton I hope it will be a loved item that maybe in years to come is used to wrap dolly or teddy in :)

Here is a gallery of odd pictures showing what I have been up to, as you can see no particular direction but nevertheless still creating!

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It’s In The Bag ……

After quite some time now I have finally got around to doing another workshop at My Sewing Basket ….. Donna kept on at me and I gave way and made sure I allowed myself some time to run a workshop in making the wonderful padded tote bag that I originally saw on MissouriQuiltCo You Tube page ….. Fantastic tutorial that I have tweeked for my ease.

It translated really well for 4 wonderful ladies Margaret, Christine, Judy and Barbara.  All have varied levels of sewing skills but that worked to our advantage as it became a lovely support one another type day. It’s rewarding to watch people who start the day as strangers interact with one another and share skills and experiences.

As ever I under estimated how much time I needed!  Really I must always add an extra hour to allow for the lovely friendly banter that happens.

Excellent taste prevailed today with beautiful fabric choices as you can see and despite Margaret having to leave before she had finished, she has enough skill to finish at home and has promised a picture of her finished item.

I chose a fairly thick wadding so it gave us a few challenges but well worth it as the finished products were AWESOME :)

This is such a versatile  design, size up or down for various tasks : book bag, shopping tote, make up bag etc.

My previous variety of totes came along for the ride as a demonstration of how versatile the design is and the many fancy finishes you can put on for added personality.

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variety of totes

variety of totes

To think I really didn't like this fabric when my darling friend R chose it yet now it's my most favourite ;)

To think I really didn’t like this fabric when my darling friend R chose it yet now it’s my most favourite ;)

At the end of the workshop my delightful ladies left with very professional looking totes and without exception all seemed very happy with their results so I really can’t ask for anymore can I?

Donna has already started on at me for the next workshop …….. Doesn’t she know I work?  A detail that she is keen to skip over and if I’m honest, I rather like ;). Makes me feel wanted ….. The chance to share my love of crafting is a gift….. One my darling Mum gave to me all those years ago.  Wouldn’t be fair to be selfish and keep it to myself now would it?

What do you think of the finished results my lovelies?

 

 

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