Tuesday, 28 October 2008

the robot vanishes...or, how Apryl got two pincushions

I was doing this Robot swap with Apryl. I'd left it quite late, but so had Apryl so that was ok. We both knew what we were doing. I worked on my swap package over one weekend and was pretty happy with what I'd made. Apryl had requested a needlebook as she has just taken to the dark art of sewing and I was happy to oblige. Got some pretty fabric sent from Japan and rustled it up. Had a few other bits and pieces to throw in too and decided to make a little robot pincushion to accompany the set. That was fun. He was the tiniest creature I'd made but I loved him nonetheless. The girls adored him and played with him relentlessly. I worried about getting him out of their grasp long enough to parcel him up and send him off but they understood he was for Apryl so I knew it would be okay. I left him in Ms Bester's clutches and went gaily (well, you know what I mean) off to work. Returned that evening and no sign of Monsieur Le Robot. Searched high up and low down, still no sign. Interrogated poor Ms Bester almost to the brink of tears, still no clues. Ms Bester, being the mischievous minx that she is, kept saying she knew where he was but she wasn't going to tell us. This was her strategy for days 1 and 2 at least. After that she capitulated and confessed she had no idea but was really sorry anyway, cue many tears. I decided I could deal with the stress of the search, the tawdry accusations and the ripping apart of my family no longer and made Apryl another, far less interesting to my mind, pincushion.
Just as it was bundled up and ready to be sent what did I spy poking out from underneath the vegetable rack but a tiny (and I mean tiny!) polkadot foot. Oh we yelped with joy when it transpired to be attached to the rest of the errant haberdashery chappie. We whooped with glee and danced around the kitchen. Then we stuck pins in the blighter and took photos of his plight

before bundling him up

and despatching him to deepest Derbyshire.

Apryl also received some chocolates, a robot bookmark and a bundle of fabric scraps to play with during her indulgence in her new found vice.
I believe she liked them (although I suspect she may have questioned my sanity as she received ever more frantic emails from me accusing my entire family and all the neighbours of dastardly deceit and kidnapping of soft toy/pincushions during the height of robotgate)

Monday, 20 October 2008

tea, buttons, original beauties...

First, the tea :: gift from my lovely friend Clare who was lucky enough to be whisked off to Paris to celebrate her dear love's birthday and who managed to drag her mind from thoughts of romance, wine, riverside walks and other such Parisian delights long enough to buy me this tin of truly delicious tea. I don't think Clare reads this blog but if she does :: THANK YOU CLARE!

Someone mentioned they liked the button's on Isaac's Kimono cardi.

Well, let me tell you, those are some very fine buttons and they are from creamrose if you fancy scoring some for yourself. I happen to know that incywincy does some lovely fabric covered buttons too (thanks again Apryl!)

Now, I got myself to Origin at Somerset House last Friday (before attending a leaving do for my lovely friend Ellie at work at which copious amounts of bubbly were consumed - just as well I didn't hit Origin after lunch - I wager I would have managed to offload some serious cash (or rather credit) had I done so)

And these are some of the things I'd have invested in had I done just that (all these images are from the designer's own websites):

A Globe ring in cellulose acetate and silver from Lesley Strickland, probably in Oyster Pearl...or maybe in Deep Ocean...then again possibly in...

A waffle blanket from Wallace+Sewell :: warm, very tactile and beautiful colours - what more could a girl ask for in a blanket?

A teapot and maybe some nice cups from Virginia Graham who recreates beautiful vintage china but with a very contemporary twist

Something pleasant for my wall from Gina Pierce whose "Peeling Paint" digitally printed fabric panels quite made me swoon. They recreate the effect of walls in the process of being restored, with hints of peeling paint and wallpapers layered over each other.

I love the hint of history, the patina of age and suggestion of lives lived and gone that this design suggests.

Finally I would have certainly picked up a pre-official publication copy of Sew It Up by Ruth Singer.
I flicked through this new sewing manual at the show and was really impressed by the quality and extent of the illustrations. I think even an instruction-phobic like myself would be able to follow these and had I not already been burdened by a pushchair, a recalcitrant 3 year old and a shortly approaching date with Ellie and the prosecco I'd have hefted it home there and then. Ruth is doing signed copies from her blog even though it doesn't hit the shops until the end of the month.

Now, I just have to get my darling beloved reading this post in advance of the festive season. Ahem...

Thanks to everyone for the commiseration on the knitting disaster. No sign of the bag so I have officially given up and am trying to piece together its contents again. Could have been worse, could have been my forecast in there (yes, still going since last March...that's bad eh?! second thoughts maybe I should hope it will be lost...)

PS Jane (who was supposed to accompany me to Origin but got unhappily detained elsewhere on a less pleasant pursuit involving the outpatients department at our local hospital) I hope you are feeling better now, shame you missed it!

Saturday, 18 October 2008

a short post about knitting...

Here is the great reveal of my nephew Isaac's knitted gift as he has now received it all the way over there in the land of Switz...it's a kimono cardi (I call it) based on this baby bulky asymmetrical cardi pattern (scoot down the page a bit and you will find it - is a great pattern) The yarn is blue sky alpaca organic dyed cotton, in Fern and 'twas knit on 6mm (harmony options) needles...

apparantly it is a big hit with the little tyke...

awh shucks...............

I have some bad news to report on the knitting front however.I was at a conference in Liverpool recently and brought another kimono cardi I was working on with me to while away those train hours there and back ( this time in a lush purple bamboo yarn...oooh, my mouth waters at the memory). I made it back to London only to find that I'd left my knitting bag on the train somehow (it was late, the train was crowded, I was tired). Numerous calls to various lost property departments have yielded nothing and I am slowly coming to terms with the fact that I've lost an almost complete cardi, along with a couple of sets of harmony needles and cables, and various bits of knitting paraphanelia that happened to be in the bag (that I have lovingly accumulated over my knitting career).I couldn't bring myself to report this until now as it would have ended with me bawling and wailing over the computer. I've gotten through this post without drowning the laptop in tears so I must be coming through it at last (excuse me while I run outside and scream, LOUDLY)

Ahem, back now. Thanks for waiting.

The fact that my (well rather Katy's) teacosy was featured on cuteable this week has helped in my recuperation...thanks Lynsey

I'll be back shortly with a report on what I liked at Origin, which I dragged a rather unwilling Ms Bester around yesterday morning...it was fun, in that unique way that craft shows and irritated (because they are not at a playground or eating icecream) small children can be...

Monday, 13 October 2008

melancholic robots...they may be sad but hey do they rock...

thanks Apryl. What a joy to receive this parcel last Saturday morning. Mr Robot may look sad but he is actually extremely happy really he just doesn't want to let anyone know...Robots are weird like that you know. Ms Reva claimed the cushion and set up the shots for photographing

Ms Bester claimed the painting and marvelled at the fact that such lovely teas were included too (she knows how much her mammy loves her tea).

They claimed a button each but happily left me with the rest. I LOVE these buttons. I also got to hang onto the gorgeous wool. Mmmm hmmm.

Thanks again Apryl - I am almost finished my parcel to you and it will be winging its way real soon now.

Oh, thanks to Claire for organising this swap too. It's been fun (although I know we've been tardy!!!)
I'll post what I've made once I know Apryl has received it. Once I've finally sent it that is!

Sunday, 5 October 2008

October is a pleasant, pleasant month...

Figgy Goodness from Borough market...

following a trip to the Rothko Exhibition at Tate Modern...

(for once I agree with the hype... "Rothko is the must-see exhibition of the year"...it is quite something)

Ms D and the Wolf were good enough to take our delightful children overnight Friday (so we could party) and all day Saturday (so we could recover) and so we managed to fit in a fine day out Thameside. Crowded exhibitions and Borough market are so much more fun without smallfry, I have to say it!

October also brought me wonderful gifts from Katy...

Ms Reva is besotted with the "bambi" fabric in the centre - it's super cute

there were also a couple of gorgeous tissue holders (which are now masquerading as a doll pillow and a receptacle for sundry small items while the running noses go unchecked) and two wonderful wooden dolly making kits...all squirrelled away now far from mummy's prying lenses...

but best of all...

A new son, Isaac, for my sister Catherine...(officially part of September but artistic licence permits inclusion in this post)

parcel of knitted goodness is on its way Kate, hope you like it

i LOVE October!