Tuesday, 24 July 2012

Hooray, hooray it's a holi-holiday...

The major sort out and clear up continues. I seem to have spring fever a wee bit late this year. I've put finishing our bedroom on hold and moved on to tidying and garden sorting. My desk is looking finer than it has for a long while. I gave up waiting to find the right size frame for the map poster and got out the blu-tac instead. Little Bun has been busy tracing the journey to our holiday home. We're beyond excited as it's the first holiday we'll have had all together for three years now.

The last week of term was a whirling dervish of sports day, friends for tea, dance classes, The Disco and leavers ceremony. Miss Rosey told me not to cry in church on Friday. She forgot to tell her dad though. Needless to say we both welled up when our girl gave her speech about her primary school days. When she was in year 3 we moved her and Little Bun from our village's school to the one they're at now. Over the last three years they've achieved so much and given tons back to the school. Next year we'll be in church again welling up with pride as Little Bun gives her speech. Luckily Miss Rosey will be able to be there to hear her too as her new high school break up earlier.


All this holiday time seems to have been a long time coming and now it's here the rain's finally gone away - hurrah, hurrah, hurrah. Miss Rosey had a long weekend celebrating with her school mates and then it was just us three ladies once more.

After a busy morning weed pulling and skin burning in the sun (me both times), we headed off to our favourite place to start the holiday. Nestled in the middle of nowhere is a gem of a nursery. It has vague signs dotted about everywhere, masses of white doves that sleep on the house roof and tons of bantam cocks, hens and their chicks which strut down all the poly tunnels and into the fields.


Once we've picked and eaten a ton of fruit, we always head off to the farm shop for some ice cream. It's lovely to rest after all that hard work in the afternoon sun and watch the hens busy about.

When we got back I picked up where I'd left off with my stitching. On Friday a couple of delicious bits of fabric arrived. The blue is from Pomme de Jour's etsy store, which I adore, but have resisted buying from until now.


The pink sheet underneath I won on ebay. I lost out on the same print the day before which made me all the more determined to win the bids the next day.

I've only got a small piece of the same print in blue, but I absolutely love it so I search high and low hoping to find some more. Enough to make a dress would be the icing on the cake.


I'm running up a few new outfits for our Brighton trip. A 50's inspired dress is what I'm hoping the rose print will become. I'm not sure if it'll fit me yet as I'm made up of three different dress sizes so I find it really hard getting dresses to fit properly.


That's why I seem to live in jeans and have lots of different tops. Loving my new pink fabric and having made lots of tunics from a trusy pattern I thought one more tunic wouldn't hurt at all.


Then to match my tunic I'm making a baby Happy Shopper for Little Bun to pack all her car stuff in. When I was taking pics of old clothes for ebay she refused to let me sell her favourite gingham top. Once I said I'd make it into something she was happy again. What better thing than a bag that she can use loads.


I'll also be running one up for Miss Rosey in the spirit of absolute fairness everyone must be treated the same and no favouritism here at all please.

Anyways todays fresh air has made me all sleepy. We made sure we had an extra dose and dashed to the coast for fish and chips tonight when Mr Bun got home. Scoffing tea, by the edge of the sea with a can of shandy (us) and ribena (Bun's) was a perfect start the week and the holidays.

Friday, 20 July 2012

Lickety Spit

It's been just me and Mr Blue this week. The rest of our gang have been at work and school while we've been at home. I've had the week off work doing stuff, Alfie's just done more of what he normally does. I've been throwing paint about and having a major chuck out of hoarded junk. Alfie's licked his paws endlessly and scratched and scratched until his hip bled. We've had a few trips to the vets and used sprays and stuff, but we can't find a cure for the itch so today there was nothing for it but the hood of shame. Poor little devil still itches and it's miserable for him.


To be honest I've only really had the last two days to get stuff done, but it's a start. After five years of ignoring our bedroom I decided enough was enough. I've had a long time to think about the right colour and as it's a room that has a real problem with damp I settled on a silvery grey.


It's a long way off being finished as I've only done half of it. Half the ceiling and half the walls. Then there's all the woodwork that needs doing yet again. I've also painted lots of spots on the carpet too as I didn't bother with a dustsheet. Wish I had now.

I'm still dithering about whether to paint the fireplace all matt black or re-do it as it is.


Just to show you there's yet more wall left to do. Also a quilt and a blanket to finish, plus some furniture to sort out.


When I was sorting out the porch this week I dragged out the two small chairs I had from the nursery school the Bun's went to. They were really lucky and went to an idyllic nursery in the grounds of a convent that had donkeys and a goat to visit on their magical nature walks. It was a precious time and these wee chairs were not only good for memories, but handy too for little ones to sit on to put on their shoes. Now they're not so wee it's time for a move about.


I've settled on one chair in here for us and one for them on the landing for toys to rest on.


I really must make myself finish the quilt and blanket as it just looks right in here. I also fancy a crochet garland or two strung along the walls, but first I've got a few orders to finish up and a teacher gift to make-up before tommorow. I've made two mug covers, just one more to go and we're there. Plus the bun's to ice for the year 6 lunch treat. 

Miss Rosey has her last day at primary school tommorow so we're off to the leavers service at church in the morning and then the leavers assembly in the afternoon.

Monday, 16 July 2012

Swap Shop

We definately need more quilts and blankets if we're going to be making indoor tents and trying to keep warm this summer. The Bun's found a few to hide under and I've started another quilt to add to the patchy quilt pile.


I wanted to make the new quilt as quick and easy as possible even though I'm feeling tempted by all sorts of new shapes I've not tried out yet. 

I gathered together all of my favourite sunny day fabrics and chopped a pile of 8" x 10" rectangles. I randomly measured the size by making it as long as me and and wide enough to have a generous overhang over my body. Basically I just jumped in and hoped for the best with the measurements.


In the middle of choosing where I wanted to put all the pieces I found an old bag I'd made years ago. I'd lined the bag with the lovely apple green and blue fabric which I wanted much more than I wanted the bag so I chopped into it for more blocks for my quilt.


Instead of worrying about trying to get all my pieces lined up in orderly and neat rows, I decided to lay them side by side like a brickwall


Once I'd made sure all the top bits were straight I needed to add a few bits to the spaces left at the bottom,


Last night I quickly whizzed a few rows together on my machine. Then later on I realised I'd got the numbers the wrong way round. What a div hey. So I had tons of fun watching telly and unpicking all the rows I'd stitched.


Today was far more fun than last nights unpicking. I went to see a friend this morning who's very creative, talented and has oodles of style, plus tons of things I naughtily covet. Alongside a lovely chat and a tour of the new sewing room (which I wouldn't leave if it was mine) we did a wee fabric swap. I'd taken over a couple of bits I knew she wanted and I ooohed and aaahed at loads I liked.


For my two pieces I had a barkcloth curtain panel and a piece of blue sheeting in return.


The floral curtain is divine. Soft and oh so pretty. The sheeting is exactly how I like it with intense colours that haven't faded away over the years.  Before I find a use for them I'll just add them to the pile and watch them. As soon as I know they're right for something they'll get off that pile as quick as you like.


While the Bun's tea cooked itself, I managed to stitch all the rows of the Sunny Days Quilt together in the right order this time. 

That's the top done. Now I just need to get some batting and then I can get on with the slow, but worth it job of handquilting the top with a rainbow of coloured floss.

Tommorow will be a juggle between an all day school sports day and a pot of paint I bought to sort out our bedroom. So the quilt will have to wait patiently as once I start painting there's no stopping me. It's my first few days off in a row with no kids around since way before christmas so I'm determined to get loads done. 

See you very soon. Hello also to new followers who have jumped on board.

Sunday, 15 July 2012

A bit of a Change

We've been having a bit of a clearout today. Well I have actually, the Bun's played hospitals, made the sitting room into a land of tents and generally had a lovely time of it. Mr Bun tackled the jungle outside and I attacked the jungle inside.


I moved stuff about, changed cloths and threw random useless stuff that we've kept for an age away.


Every now and then I left the piles of stuff I was sorting and went off to cut out more oblongs for my quilt. By the end of the day I had enough and then the fun of juggling them about until they were in the right order started. I'll show you how it's getting on next time.


I blew away the cobwebs from our china and glass cabinet and had a change about of things. Some stuff got put away and some came out again.


I dumped a lot of stuff in the back hall where our bookcase bends under the weight of it all. Tommorow's plan is to get a load of stuff onto ebay for some holiday pennies. Then we'll be off to add some flowers and food to mum's house as she gets back from a trip to Italy late on Sunday night. She'll have tales to tell us of Assisi, Florence and Rome and we'll just be glad to have her back.


Later on today the Bun's and I made some junk jewellery. At the Street market last week we picked a few bits and bobs from the small bead shop we found.


I did the glueing as we were using superglue. Glad I did as I managed to glue the hamburger ring to the table in a jiffy.


They're thrilled with their new rings all chosen and made by us. With the end of year school disco looming bright jewells are a must.


Little Bun chose the duck and strawberry. Miss Rosey has the hamburger and cherries.

 
I even made one for me too. Glad the Bun's love plastic tat as much as me.

Friday, 13 July 2012

Friday Fancies

The postie had a couple of parcels all for me this morning. A perfect way to brighten yet another grey wet day in July. I found myself on Amazon this week because we'd started getting snotty letters from the library. Miss Rosey took out a book ages ago and then lost it. In the end I had to go and find a cheap replacement, which in turn meant I couldn't resist having a look for a couple of books I'd wanted for a while now.


A friend of mine showed me some of the wonderful kitties she's made from Wee Wonderfuls and that was that I was sold on getting the book. I'm so glad I was tempted as there are a whole host of characters in it that I want to make and already have requests for. I love Melvin and Marian, but then there's also Bjorn Bjornsen and well all of them really.


Miss Rosey wants Evelyn the Inchworm which will have me singing along hearing Danny Kaye in my head (if you're old enough to have seen the film of him as Hans Christian Andersen you'll know what I'm on about).

Little Bun has her heart set on an elephant bag. If they stand a chance of getting any of these critters made then I'll have to get them learning how to do this stitchy business themselves.


My other parcel was even more exciting as I didn't know what would be in it. I'd been lucky enough to be the winner of Kazzy's Summer Giveaway. Well she's been beyond generous with all the lovely bits and bobs she put in a package for me.


I've already dotted the bits and bobs here and there, made plans for the fabric and Little Bun and Miss Rosey have chosen a few things for themselves. Little Bun was off school today, but she was well enough to help share the Wispa with me.


I dragged her from the sofa later in the afternoon when we needed to hunt down some straw and henfood. Somehow we ended up in QD buying a random selection of stuff. Among other things, we had a bag of straw, mugs that I want to crochet cosy warmers for teacher presents and I grabbed a cheery blue laundry bucket for the grand sum of £1.


After that we ended up in the sweetie shop and just had to go into Vintage Mischief. I'm so glad I did as I got the softest piece of pink flannelette which will be perfect to back the quilt I've started. 

Flanelette always makes me think of crimpelene nighties too. All part of the same bit of time I guess. I had a nightie once when I was wee that I think  was crimpelene. It scared the bejesus out of me as it was so full of static electricity and had a lovely care label that told you how highly flammable this thing you were about to sleep in was. Carefree days the 1970's. With all the three and four day weeks and strikes our house was full of candles which upped the chances of me lighting up the night. I only think I wore it once.


Now we're in a house without heating I'm busy making lots of blankets and quilts, just in case we don't get it sorted soon. I'm hoping to finally decorate our bedroom next week as I've got a few weeks off. After five years here, it's the only room to have escaped my paintbrush. I plan to have my Granny Patches crochet blanket to mix and match with the Floral Quilt I'm making to finish off our room. Alfie Blue will most definately be banned from sleeping on my handiwork.

Sunday, 8 July 2012

Frolics

This week has been full of festivities. On Wednesday evening we waited ever so patiently on the streets of our city to see a flash of the Olympic Torch whizz by. Don't get me wrong, I'm no sports fan, but we thought the Bun's should see what all the fuss was about. A warm summer's evening going out after school, followed by pizza was also a pretty darned good reason for being there.

On Saturday the festivities continued for the Lord Mayor's celebrations. We planned to see the procession that evening and then try out another restaurant. Before we went, I made sure I had a play with a few fabric piles and then I bossily sent my lovelies off to see if there were any roadside sweetpeas for sale.


I couldn't resist chopping into a few bits of my stash with the thought that I'd be able to make a bed quilt another day. My plan's to cut larger oblongs and then hopefully it won't take too long to stitch together.


After a busy chopping session, it was time to head off and find a good roadside viewing spot. A band of pipes and drummers opened the procession, followed by Snap the Dragon, the Town Crier and a few other gaily dressed odds and sods.


Little Bun managed to get covered in stickers as she threw money into collection buckets. We waved to and sang along with all the different floats and groups that went past us.





One of my favourite's were the Sumo Synchronised Swimmers. Might be because they have the same hairstyle as me, but they really did shimmy and shake well.

Today there was a choice of quite a few things to do. We fancied a country fair in one direction and the Norwich Lanes Fair in the other, or we could just cosy up and watch films. As always I fancied doing it all. The rain helped us make our decision, we decided we'd get wetter in a field than we would hiding in shop doorways and then we could have our snuggle up at home later on. So off we went in search of vintage markets and to see street entertainers.

First stop was St Gregory's Church where regular vintage markets are held. I've long fancied one of Sugar and Hatter's floral mini hair fascinators and luckily for me they had a stall there today.


Dreadful picture of me follows where I look partly sozzled, but it's a good shot of the floral thing happening on my head.


Then as if by magic I've sobered up a treat.


Miss Rosey also spied a sparkly piece of Sugar and Hatter hair jewellry that caught her fancy and so after a wee think about it we rushed back to buy that for her too. It's the school disco this week so I think it'll be having its first outing then.


One of the highlights for me was going into the Kier Hardie Hall for Bunty's Bazaar. I'd been asked to have a stall, but I fancied being a customer this week instead. I didn't take any photos as I was just caught up in the atmosphere of the place and completely forgot. I'll just have to describe it to you. 1960's wallpaper covers the entrance hall with a short flight of stairs in front, with a handrail down the centre. From the room at the top of the stairs came magical dance music. When we stepped in the disco ball was spinning and casting flickering touches of light all around a hall filled with a wonderful selection of vintage stalls. I felt as if I'd stepped back in time and it all felt so calm and just so. When I talked to Bunty she told me about Swing dance classes that are held here every Monday. I can't think of anywhere more perfect to start learning how to swing my hips.


Once I'd stopped soaking in the magic of the hall (which apparently was stinky of old fags and yucky dirty first thing) I pulled myself together enough to grab a couple of treats. Two 1950's picnic pots with screw lids and a 50's water carafe all for £6. Mr Bun wanted the Teasmaid, but I just couldn't get excited about it. Mind you he's been on and on about going to see the kitsch bar and now with all your encouragement on my last post he'll probably be dragging it home tommorow.

When we got home I managed a bit of my own magic - look I made the picture in the book come to life.


If you have Apples for Jam then I really do suggest you try out the Hazlenut Meringue because it's so delicious that we just about ate all of it tonight.