Thursday, 17 July 2014

The Skirt

Prepare to be impressed...nay, amazed.  Fiona has made a skirt!

I embarked on this sewing lark a few months back, enthused by The Great British Sewing Bee and inspired by Lazy Daisy Jones who blogged this fab tutorial.  I persuaded some ladies at my Stitch & Bitch class to have a crack at it too and they did.  It didn't go smoothly for me but after some consideration,  kind comments and encouragement from you lovely lot out there,  I decided to press on with it.  In addition to Daisy's tutorial I also had some welcome advice from my good friend and neighbour Eunice, about hemming, tacking and general finishing off, which I did in the sunshine accompanied by Prue and a glass of Pimm's.  

The fabric is plain as I thought pattern matching was probably a step too far for a novice like me, so I jazzed it up with some ric-rac...radical eh?

Is there an approved way of tacking???  I dunno but this worked for me.

I wore it to Stitch & Bitch today and unbelievably even the tutor (who never fails to point out the smallest mistakes) didn't have a bad word to say about it.  

 necklace - junk shop
t-shirt - BHS
sandals - cats protection chazza
skirt - all my own work


 It's not perfect, the fabric is unexciting and it took me ages to make, but nevertheless I'm quite pleased with it.  I might even have another bash, with a printed fabric ....but don't hold your breath.

Tuesday, 1 July 2014

Scavenger Hunt - June

Another month has whizzed past so it's time for the Scavenger Hunt link up.  I didn't find this month's list too much of a challenge although my interpretations could have been a lot more imaginative.   You'll find other submissions and next month's list here.



 on Sunday 15th June. The London to Brighton Bike ride


 at the Ardingly Antiques Fair


 I was positive I would find a puppet at the antiques fair but Sod's law, they eluded me, isn't that always the way when you're looking for something?  In desperation I suddenly remembered this knitting pattern although god knows quite why I bought it, it's way too advanced for my limited abilities.

You again

Oh do put that camera away, can't you see I'm having a stretch?


 raindrops on alchemilla mollis



 support for our team at the post office.. before we were defeated!


 the water at the local yachting lake


 or womanmade in this case, my frog blog win from Tracey


 the local Italian restaurant


 is a bugger to photograph!

As always thanks to Greenthumb for hosting. 


Monday, 23 June 2014

Bargains and St. Botolph's

The last seven days have been busy ones.  There's been successful chazzing,  a few purchases made at the Ardingly Antiques Fair and a lovely day out on the other side of West Sussex with a friend.  I know you want to see my charity shop buys.... so wait no longer.

 I scored this gorgeous PVC jacket, Boden no less, although I didn't buy it for the label.  The colour is sensational and an instant spirit lifter.... if spirits happened to be low that is.  It has a bit of 60's vibe going on.  Instead of posing by the shabby shed, shouldn't I be in Carnaby St ?

I wore it to the antiques fair at Ardingly last week as the sky looked decidedly black when we left and no sooner had we arrived when a male stall holder complimented me on it.  No doubt he was buttering me up so I'd buy his £65 vase, but even so I felt chuffed.... this is how Vix must feel every day!

   Another stall holder spied me eyeing this basket with interest and offered it to me for a fiver.  I've no idea what I'll do with it yet but I couldn't leave it behind at that price.  There was all manner of vintage gorgeousness at Ardingly but although I took my camera I was so engrossed in the stalls I completely forgot to take any snaps.

And how about these shoes I scored at the Cats Protection chazza?

Oh yes I'm very pleased with these.  Not only do they accommodate my bunions but they are Kennel Und, I was none the wiser either.   They looked expensive to me so I googled their website and discovered that even their sale items were retailing at £130...I paid £2.49.  

The weather has been glorious lately, us Brits are always surprised by this so take full advantage of sunny skies to spend time outdoors.   I've been planting annuals and generally titivating the garden in hope of an impromptu al fresco soiree this summer.   Poor old Prue doesn't know what to do with herself except find a nice shady spot amongst my gladi's, which have now been flattened.  

Today was another sunshiney day, perfect for a day out with a friend and a pub lunch.

Afterward we visited a couple of junk shops but delights eluded us, so we returned to R's house and walked down his lane to the local church, St Botolph's.

   It's thought that this ancient church was built around 1050.  There are several Roman sites nearby and Roman tiles and bricks were re-used in the walls.  Inside the church is one of the finest series of wall paintings in the county which were painted in the 1100's.

I was amazed to find the church door open and viewed this with ambivalence.  I felt privileged to be able to experience these ancient works but also felt anxious that unprotected, they could be desecrated.  God forbid though that they should become some dreadful commercialised tourist attraction which Stone Henge, seen on TV this week, now is.

So that was my week, how was yours?
Anyone else having trouble with Blogger?

Linking to Sir Thrift a Lot.

Sunday, 15 June 2014

Off The Edge Flowers

I'm on a day off today and as it is virtually impossible to go out due to the annual London to Brighton bike ride which comes through our village, I decided to stay home and potter.  I've planted some French marigolds, nasties and lobelia....let's hope the sodding snails don't get them, I  mosied down to the main road to take a few snaps of the cyclists, rather them than me but jolly good on them....and I've made a few cards. I made this one for this week's LIM challenge - One Layer Off The Edge, can you spot the mistake?

 Grrr, how bloody annoying.  How many times have I done this now? In future maybe the LIM ladies can make the words One Layer flash on/off for idiots like myself ??  Never mind, I know I'm not the only one to have made this mistake.  Fortunately I also made it for  Sweet Stampin - Say It With Flowers and Time Out challenges - Summer/Flowers  The image is an old one by Penny Black which I coloured with watercolour pencils, the sentiment is also by PB.  I added a soupcon of glitter (anyone know how to add a cedilla?) and a few blue gems.  The card featured in my last post was a winner at Creative Inspirations, so thanks ladies you cheered me up after a shitty week at work.  

Thanks also to those of you who left comments and advice about my sewing machine dilemma.  I have managed to track down a machine repair shop and intend to have them take a look to establish if it's terminal or not. Fingers crossed my skirt will get finished soon. 

I wonder where the last bike rider is right now?

I'm off now to tackle a mountain of ironing, have a good week all.

Sunday, 8 June 2014

Handknitted by Jean Price

It's been a busy old week what with work and then days off which have been even busier.  On Thursday I cut out my skirt fabric, pattern here, as Friday was the long awaited making day.  I wish I had a finished garment to show you, but it was all a bit of a disaster.....  I arrived at the sewing venue raring to go, with five other ladies from my Knit and Natter group who were also keen to give this sewing lark a try.  Machines were whirring at full pelt when I asked our tutor a question which required her to look at my ancient machine.  Well apparently it didn't pass muster, my needle was off centre (I had no idea where it was supposed to be!) and pronounced not fit for skirt making.

To cut a long story short I used a spare machine, but of course by the time I had threaded it up and worked out how to use it I was miles behind the others and ran out of time, therefore my skirt is unfinished. Major disappointment! To cheer myself up yesterday I went to a jumble sale.  We had to queue for half an hour before opening, fortunately after the deluge earlier, it was surprisingly warm and dry.  Here's what I bought.

Denby jug, two seventies coffee cups, Faience design tin tray, Wealden district guide, small Pyrex dish and a beautifully hand knitted wool sweater...I'm thinking ahead to winter already. All this is worth £2.30 of anyone's money I reckon.
Still in the making mood, last night I knocked up a few cards.  This is one of them which I'm entering in the following challenges.
Stampin For The Weekend-Anything Goes 

 I used:  Scalloped Circle nesties
die-cut flowers-Memory Box
flourish stamp-My Paper World
sentiment-Penny Black
A cream and red colour combination was used to comply with the brief at LIM and I followed Creative Inspirations sketch 10.  

Thanks for all your recent comments and for those who were interested in the 'sleb' who was up themself, I can reveal that none of you guessed correctly!  I'll be back later to catch up with you all but for now I'm off to do battle with Dad's garden. 
 Enjoy your week.

Saturday, 31 May 2014

Scavenger Hunt - May

Time for the May Scavenger Hunt link-up.  Is it just me or is anyone else finding the prompts more challenging each month?  I guess that's a good thing...isn't it?


is for lamppost....taken on my recent trip to Spain


 I'm not a soap addict but very occasionally I watch this one



 The stalwart of my crafting arsenal



 Terribly obvious I'm afraid, but I failed to find inspiration


Myself, other shoppers and the stripy roof canvas of the market stall are all reflected in these sunnies.


a market stall in southern Spain


....a weed methinks?


a frog in long grass in my garden

 (due for) Demolition

 a derelict prefab in my village


My Victorian opal and diamond ring, inherited from Mum

Thanks as always to Greenthumb for hosting the challenge, check out her blog and the other entries and next month's list here.

Sunday, 25 May 2014

What's Your Name, Who's Your Daddy

It's been a while since I've done a card but after work yesterday instead of collapsing on the sofa in front of the idiot box I got busy...quite impressive after a 12hr shift wouldn't you say? There's a die-cut theme at Less Is More so I had a rummage in my collection and came up with this.

Dies - Spellbinders oval nesties
         Marianne's bird on a branch
Stamps - Inkylicious    
   Hobby Art
 Also linking to this week's ATCAS challenge- Texture

Talking of work, we've seen more slebs (I use that term loosely) in the last couple of days than you can shake a stick at.  Well ok, five actually.  Nigel Mansell, Nigel Havers, John Gordon Sinclair, Tess Daly and Vernon Kay. One of them was a bit up themselves.

I'm on nights tonight so I got a lie-in today but yesterday at 4am, Radio 2 woke me up with this tune and I was singing it all day. I love Rod Argent's psychedelic improv bit and imagined doing 60's dancing to it with very swingy hair and go-go boots. It featured in a Tampax advert once...time of the season??