Friday, December 11, 2009
It is easy to see that these blocks will need to be squared up and I hope that after that the seems will match. If they do then I will sew them together sort of like this. The greyish blocks will be needing something to help them to integrate and I may free machine stitch some Klimpt like trees on those, or something.
If I can't get the seems to line up properly, I will a) say something rude and b) attempt to rearrange the blocks so that it doesn't show too much.
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Being a grand-ma is the best job in the world :)
Sunday, November 22, 2009
I did try to make a patchwork 'disapearing 9 patch' block, using a charm pack of lovely batik fabrics. Using my 1/4" foot, I carefully stitched together three sets of three squares. Pressed the seams and layed them out ready to join. Nope, not one seam matched. I would have to trim each and every 5" square if I ever wanted to patchwork with this pack. I unpicked and threw the whole set into the scrap box. I won't be buying pre-cut fabric again.
Friday, November 20, 2009
Did I mention it is a big cage? Huge. And the key was right in the middle where no hand could reach. It is a good strong padlock, (he breaks weaker ones and escapes and eats the house.) So using a long implement C tries to poke the key out of the cage, whilst trying not to hurt Ben who is squirming and wriggling and wagging everything, trying to lick her and generally getting in the way.
Last year my beautiful Katydog died and I am ready to bring another love into my life. B doesn't want to risk the heartbreak again. I have been trying to persuade him to my way of thinking. Ben just isn't helping...
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Monday, November 16, 2009
I have to explain that C used to live down a long street of Victorian terraces built when cars hadn't been invented. It is narrow. Today the street is lined with cars and the gap to drive down is extremely tight. C drove down fine but when she tried to turn around the van at the bottom of the street, the van got stuck. It was pouring with rain and I had to start knocking on doors to try to find out whose car we were almost wedged against. Then ask them to please move their precious car. Twice! Claire finally managed to move the van but there was no-where to park it so she had to park up the hill, 100 houses away from hers. We then had to walk back to the house, catch the dog and attempt to get Ben into a secure room. Not easy. We then had to get the cage down the stairs. Unfortunately there was a huge pile of boxes of books and other heavy stuff in the way so we had to lift the cage over our heads to get it past these.
Ben likes socks. C kept her socks in a basket under her bed. Ben's cage is next to the bed. Ben likes to poke his long narrow nose through the mesh of the cage and steal socks. He is very picky and choses fluffy socks. He then lays on them. He doesn't eat socks! Ben also has a fluffy blanket in the bottom of his cage, he used to eat blankets but he seems to like this one and it is still in one piece.
So, we lift the cage over our heads and past the boxes, to the top of the stairs and then socks start flying around, landing on our heads, followed by a fluffy (hairy and a bit smelly) blanket. I laughed. C laughed. We got a bit hysterical. Couldn't move, socks everywhere, Ben starts fretting and worry about him eating his way out through the door forced us to get a grip. We got the cage downstairs, outside, down the concrete steps, onto the pavement. Cars parked everywhere including the pavement. We had to carry the blooming cage up the middle of the road, giggling like crazy, water dripping off us. We managed to lift the cage into the van and secure it so it wouldn't move around. Went back to collect Ben. Who is by now having a breakdown and has escaped the secure room but is still contained inside the house. Rather innocently I asked where his lead was. He ate it last week.
Picture two hysterical females, absolutely soaked to the skin, water dripping off our heads. One maniac greyhound, one van 100 houses away, no lead. I ran up the road, Ben ran after me with C hanging on to his collar hoping he was following me and not escaping. We did get him into the van and into his cage, he even stopped for a wee on the way up the street.
Next day we went to the pet shop and bought a new lead. It is a long chain with a chunky nylon hand grip. He likes it. Unfortunately someone forgot to use it and take Ben out for a walk. He peed on the brand new carpet.
Monday, November 09, 2009
The bigger bookmarks measure 12cm tall (4 1/2"), they are all the same size (my cut and pasting was a bit off). The bookmarks will be sold on behalf of Sleaford Embroiderers at a craft fair to be held at the beginning of December.
I ordered them on Friday and they arrived on Monday, pretty good service, don't you think? They weren't expensive either, the three cost less than £18 including postage. www.michael-williams-wood.co.uk is the place to go if you want one for yourself. Michael has other wood turned tools and is going to make me a mushroom so that I can do some darning.
I always get a good feeling when I send a random act of kindness, and it is lovely when someone thinks enough of me to send me one. Raks are win win win.
Sunday, November 08, 2009
What is the point of having a bottom two sing off if you are going to go with the public vote anyway? Why not just cut out the second show and send the one with the fewest votes home each week?
Who gives Louis the right to act like a spoilt three year old, have tantrums on air, insult popular music dj's, and when all else fails, accuse someone of cheating?
I give in, this isn't something I want to watch anymore. Good luck to the rest of the contestants.
Saturday, October 03, 2009
Monday, September 28, 2009
Friday, September 11, 2009
I popped in to see if I could see anything I might like to wear to the wedding next year, but everything I tried on made me feel old and frumpy. I only went over to look at the shoe section to see if they had any boots for C. They didn't but they did have these scrummy comfy red shoes. To get from the shoe section to the door I had to walk through the handbags and this one shot off the shelf into my hand. I didn't feel quite so ancient on the way home :)
So - I bought a Polaroid Pogo at an incredible bargain price. It arrived the next day. I took a pic using my mobile phone and tried to send it to the Pogo. Oops. My phone is so old it doesn't have Bluetooth! That was why I was in Grantham looking at mobile phones.
Saturday, September 05, 2009
I bought the Janome 6600 a while ago but struggled to use it efficiently as it sat too high. I considered buying a Horn cabinet but - have you seen the price?
I decided I needed a comfy chair anyway so allowed my lovely parents-in-law to buy me this one for my birthday. Unfortunately when it is raised high enough for me to sew comfortably, my feet don't reach the foot pedal. No problem, I built a shelf to put the pedal on. Brilliant, but then I couldn't get the chair with me sat on it under the table, so I still couldn't reach the machine.
I scoured e-bay for a new desk and eventually found this one. Ace condition, beautifully made, inexpensive and local. It even fits into the room. Big smile, happy me.
Now if only I could remember why I needed the Janome in the first place.......
Friday, September 04, 2009
Woman driver (C) behind slams brakes on and stops a breath away from A. Congratulates herself for saving her 2 day old brand spanking new car. Looks up into the mirror just in time to see car (D) slam into her. Male driver.
Three cars written off. None of them belonging to the MOST IMPORTANT PERSON IN THE WORLD who considered traffic jams not for the likes of him.
My daughter waited 3 months for her car. She had it for 2 days. She will be ok when her shoulder heals and she gets her nerves back into shape. She is a fantastic driver. I will be ok, I still have my daughter. You see, behind car D was a HGV and we have all heard the stories of what happens when one of those slams into a car. My beautiful fantastic driver daughter had swerved far enough onto the hard shoulder that the hgv managed to drive past them without harm. I feel very lucky.
For those of you have been reading for a while, this all happened within yards of the very place that the tire blew out. She has to be one of the most competent drivers in this country. And she is a woman driver.
And I love her (and her sister)
Monday, August 31, 2009
T'weather's turned now and we have a definate chill in the air, it is also breezy so it won't be long before the leaves are on the ground. It is true what 'they' say, the older you are, the quicker time flies...
Monday, July 27, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
We went down about 300 slippery stone steps and then we had to climb back up again. The kids were fine but me and B had to take it a bit slower, by the time we got back out into daylight, everyone had been in the gift shop and ordered tea and coffee :)
Sunday, July 05, 2009
The following day I was teaching atcs to the Bailgate guild in Lincoln. I think that went well everyone worked very hard. Then I went to see TAKE THAT in Manchester with C, (those boys still have the old magic.) Got home from that in time to pack my stuff up for the workshop with Pauline Verrinder.
For the last few weeks my pc has been playing up, with dire warnings of hard drive failure popping up and it would not log on to the net. I un-installed and re-installed stuff and decided that I needed a new modem so ordered one. Whilst waiting for that to be delivered I thought I would decorate the study. In a heatwave! My walls are now lovely and clean (and I lost a couple of pounds)
The modem arrived and I attached it to the pc and ran the set up programe but it wouldn't talk to the pc. After a few hours of tinkering, swearing and sitting in front of the fan to cool off - (heatwave, not all temper tantrums) I worked out that the ethernet switch on the pc isn't working. Duh!! The new modem needs an ethernet connection but the old one works wirelessly, so I re-set that one and it now connects just fine.
It was my birthday last week and my lovely in-laws paid for a new chair which I can raise and lower as needed. This is so that I can raise myself to the right height to sew on my new Janome 6600. To get my shoulders to the right height to use the machine, I raise the chair seat. But then my feet dangle and I can't reach the foot pedal. Not a problem, I will make a wooden box to put the pedal on. I have a 15% off voucher to use in the local diy store as long as I pay using a particular credit card. So I go to the diy store to buy a sheet of mdf with the intention of getting them to cut it to the right size - they do that free of charge. The machine was out of order (or there was no-one in to operate it), so that was out. But I had the voucher so I bought a small and lightweight staple gun to use to make print frames. Went to the checkout and handed over the voucher and the credit card and couldn't remember the blooming pin number for that card. Duh! By the time I got home I was hot and harrassed. I pulled the bag out of the boot of the car and forgot to take my hand out, pulled the lid down. DuhDuhDuh. Goodness I did say a naughty word. The first finger on my left hand took the brunt of the damage and is a bit swollen and turning a funny colour, but at least I can still move the joints so hopefully it will be ok. It doesn't half hurt though.
Saturday, July 04, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009
5 am next day, I wake up to the sound of our neighbourhood pigeon coo-cooing at the top of his voice from the tv ariel. Turn over to go back to sleep and hear scritchy scratchy sound coming from the ceiling. I tried to go back to sleep but the thought of a poor little bird trapped in the attic was too much for me. So I got up – yes me, at 5am!!
I checked outside to see if I could see anywhere a bird might be getting inside. I go into the loft to see if I could see any sign of a bird. Not a thing. However there is something looking suspiciously like a feather floating just above the guttering. There is an air vent in the roof just above the feather so although there is no sign of breakage I decide to use mesh to cover it anyway. Drive to diy store, buy plastic mesh.
I climb back up the ladder into the loft with the mesh, staple gun and scissors. Think “if there is a bird flying around in here, how will I catch it”? Need something to catch bird with. Back down ladder to look for the large piece of fine black net which we used to use to keep flies out of the back door. Find net in kitchen drawer and put it into back pocket of jeans.
Back up ladder to loft. I clear a few cartons so that I can climb though the gap to get to the vent. This is at the lowest point in the roofline in the part of the loft we didn’t bother to board out as it was so shallow we knew we would never use it. Realise I will have to very carefully crawl along the joists to get to the vent. Back down the ladder to find a box to put the mesh, staple gun, scissors etc in so that I don’t have to carry them. Be brave and go into shed for large cardboard box, hoping the giant spider that lives in there is asleep and doesn’t get me. Saw friendly mouse trap on shelf and got that too. Baited that with caramel and sesame covered peanuts and a piece of chocolate (if a mouse has to be trapped in a can, he may as well eat nice things).
I climb the ladder again. Push the box with my tools in it through the gap, then decide I need to go to the loo. Down the ladder. Do the stuff and turn to flush toilet, Yikes! There is something huge and black in loo. It’s the bloody net that was in my back pocket, must have fallen in when I sat down. Of course I had peed on it. Fish net out of loo and put into sink, wash hands. Go and search for something else to catch the bird with.
Back up ladder. Did I mention that it has been rather warm here recently? I don’t know what the temperature was in my attic, but it is a well insulated enclosed space and it was like a blooming sauna up there. Anyway, I push my cardboard box through the small gap I had made in the stacked cartons and climb through. The ceiling is so low I have to somehow crawl along the rafters, which are around two feet apart, with only fibre glass insulation covering the plasterboard ceiling. I manage to get to the part of the roof with the vent, cut the plastic mesh and by laying on my back, at a very strange angle and trying to keep my weight on the joists, cover the air gap with mesh. I found a small tear in the roofing felt so stapled gunned that to fix it. Then to be extra sure I covered the whole area with mesh. I slithered back across the insulation, through the gap in the stored cartons, put everything back. Climbed back down ladder. I was dripping, smelly, had splinters in my knees, was itching everywhere from the fibreglass, when the phone rang. It was himself, he was having a bad day…
p.s. I did ring back and apologise for swearing at him once I had had a shower. The net washed in the washing machine and so far the trap is still empty. I guess the bird got out the way he got in when he heard me coming.
Tuesday, June 02, 2009
Lincoln Bailgate Guild had Paddy Killer come and teach a one day workshop. Paddy's stuff is awesome and I just had to take the class. http://www.paddykillerart.co.uk/
Anyway this is what I produced in one day. We had lots of tuition in the morning with slides etc, then we traced part of a design and drew it onto antung silk fabric using a pigment drawing pen. (The silk had been sprayed with starch on the reverse of the fabric.) I lightly shaded in the areas that I wanted to fill using stitch. We could have painted the design with textile paint at this stage. The piece of silk was layered with cotton batting and had cotton organdie as the base. We used a very fine thread both in the bobbin and through the needle - I found it so much harder to sew with this thread, every tiny wobble showed. I did start to sew around the edge again but ran out of time. As I was using Paddy's thread I won't be finishing the started sample! The pen worked really well with no smudging or bleeding and I would use one again but I think I need lots more practice before I use expensive silk and organdie again.
Thursday, May 28, 2009
Some of the pieces will need over dyeing or maybe printing over, but I don't mind that. They do look nice and bright drying on my washing line. The one story building in the background is my studio, now finished and a joy to work in. Having this super space hasn't made me a better artist though. Shame about that...
Monday, May 18, 2009
We had a couple of hours to wait for the Cathedral to open so walked across the square to the Alcazar Palace. Typical huge stone walls but as we walked through the entrance there was a hint of what was inside. I started to perk up a bit when I saw this.
The orange tree planted right up against the stone wall was lovely, loads of ripe oranges too. Hmm, but Seville oranges are used to make marmalade so they weren't for eating.
The detail on the stone wall in the garden was great too.
Then we went inside
There were many amazing archways like this one, check out the detail and the colours
The doors had texture and colour and pattern too.
This is a detail from the door on the right
Did I mention the floors and the ceilings
I turned 360 degrees, looked up at the ceiling and down at the floor and was sure I had died and gone to design heaven.
There was far too much to see in one visit, I want to go back for a week with a pile of sketchbooks and pens and paper and crayons to do rubbings and and
If anyone is inclined to look at more photos from the places I visited you can go to http://www.flickr.com/photos/emmaemmeline/ and while away an hour or two :)