Wednesday, 19 November 2008

on staying warm...or, I do like a cup of hot coffee on occasion too ...

Contrary to popular belief it is not all tea round here. From time to time (read that as every day at 10am) I like to make a cafetiere of coffee and indulge myself in a blast of hot strong caffeine but all too often my pursuit of this little indulgence gets interrupted (spouse/children/work/ get the picture) and I get back only to be faced with the disappointment of a luke warm pot of coffee and a choice between throwing it away or microwaving it. Neither of which pleases me.

Obviously something needed to be done...enter the cafetiere cosy

I made this in less than twenty minutes while also watching Ms Bester do some drawing, so it really is a very quick and simple project (that may just revolutionise your life)

Here is how to make one:

From your collection of felted sweaters choose one whose colour fills your heart with joy.

For a small cafetiere (bodum one cup for example) you’ll get away with using a sleeve, for anything bigger you’ll need part of the body.

Measure the distance between the top and bottom of the handle (by eye, measuring tape, bit of string, holding a section of the felted sweater (whose colour makes your heart sing) up against it – these are all permissible techniques) and cut a long rectangle from the sweater. Make sure it is long enough to go all around the body of the jug and have a little bit (say two inches) to spare.

From your collection of beautiful wools and flosses select one whose addition to the felted sweater will enrich your warm coffee experience as much as you can bear. Use this to blanket stitch all around your rectangle.

Then choose a couple of nice buttons (from your extensive button collection) and cut slits in one end of the rectangle of a size generous enough to accommodate those buttons. Blanket stitch around the slits to make pretty buttonholes.

Attach buttons to opposite end of rectangle in the right places so that they meet the buttonholes when the rectangle is stretched snugly around your cafetiere.

Embellish the cosy to your hearts desire.

Put kettle on. Make pot of delicious hot coffee. Apply cosy to said pot using pretty buttons to secure.

Snuggle up with great book/the newspaper/a craft project/your darling/whoever was at the door (maybe omit the snuggling for this last one, unless you know them well of course) and forget about it for a while.

Remember the coffee, pour into your favourite cup (milk and sugar as you wish) and delight in the fact that is still toasty hot when you finally take a sip.


Am off to Switzerland on Friday to check out my new nephew (and hopefully drink lots of nice hot coffee with my sister!).

Wednesday, 12 November 2008

you know that your child has been living with a blogger for too long when...

...the first thing she does upon receipt of some postal goodies is dash off immediately in search of the best available light and arrange them ready to be photographed...

...goodies from Helen at Angharad, there was also an old fashioned peg ready for some peg dolly action but the apprentice blogger decided to omit that for a reason known only to herself...

I had no idea what Ms Reva was up to, quite thought she'd lost her marbles in fact (now I know how my overmilkwood-mates must feel about me on a regular basis) until the penny finally dropped. Then I just felt an overwhelming sense of pride...(ahem, you know I'm kidding, right?...right?)

Thanks Helen, for the unexpected goodies for the kids as well as for my lovely giveaway prizes, which I have so far managed to keep for myself, thanks in no small part to the distraction of the peg dolly goodies.
If you planned it that way it was both cunning and immensely successful!

A word about the fabric in the background there: it is a piece of 50s barkcloth I managed to pick up in Jubilee Market one Monday morning - I LOVE 50s barkcloth - we had a wooden holiday chalet on the Irish coast in the 1970s which was still rigged out from the 50s with curtains and cushions etc in this and it always takes me back to those really happy times - if anyone knows a good source for the stuff PLEASE let me know...(cos, like, I really need to start collecting something else you know...)

Apart from photo shoots with the baby blogger I've been engaged with making a doll quilt for the Doll Quilt Swap No 5 (first one I've joined in with)

I used some of my favourite fabrics and made an attempt at a flying geese pattern. Don't look too closely though as if you do you'll see my geese are a little random and not so keen on flying in military style formation

Pesky birds!

I enjoyed making it though and have great plans to make quilts for the girls, and even one for my own king size bed one day. Whoa...hold on there girl...

(you can see more DSQ5 pictures over on flickr)

What else? oh yes...every cloud has a silver you may recall I lost my fancy dangled harmony option needles on a train from Liverpool and so have been a bit stumped on the knitting front (well, until yesterday when the replacements finally arrived - Hallelujah!). I was forced into using some old plastic ones from the days I used to buy up lots of vintage knitting needles on ebay which brought me the very pleasant experience of knitting with red malabrigo on pretty green needles...

...was almost worth losing the needles to enjoy those contrasting colours together...

In the background there you can see my lovely Cath Kidston bag sent by my even more lovely friend Katy when I moaned about not being allowed to be in her draw due to being a UK resident. Always worth a little moan I reckon. Thanks Katy. Mwah!

The knitting ended up as a tea cosy for my old school friend Siobhan. She had requested a red one as recently as November 2007 (my ability to procrastinate knows few equals) and I managed it in time for a belated Birthday Present this year. Happy Birthday dear hope you like it!

The weather in London this month is a strange mix of beautiful, clear crisp Autumn days and dark days of non-stop miserable rain. Last Sunday was one of the former and we got out to the woods, taking coffee and bagels with us.

It was a lovely little excursion and one I hope to repeat often this Autumn and Winter.

Hope you are managing to enjoy Autumn (or is it officially Winter already? I always get confused) wherever you are, or Spring I guess, if you happen to be down southerly ways...