Sunday, 31 January 2016

back to the drawing board

I need to practise my own sketching/drawing........haha I really need to practise!! most of my sketches comes out as colouring book type designs these days, I'm still occasionally using the 642 book for subject prompts.

Here is my finger, bit strange looking but there you are.

but then, given the subject 'key chain' I'm back in colouring book mode !!

Talking of colouring books....... I have to reduce the number of books that I own, I know I've mentioned this before BUT it is so difficult to let them go!! I sorted out another batch last week that I can let go to a charity shop but the number of books lurking in cupboards seems endless.

The first five books pulled out from here were colouring books, actually very detailed geometric colouring books which I must have picked up about 15 years ago when I was at college.

So, I showed these to Ian, said how difficult it is to get rid of any and we came to the conclusion that the best approach is to simply put all the books in subject order, then see if any duplicate the same info and work from there. These are going to be filed with my other colouring books for the time being.

Saturday, 30 January 2016


well, I'm not sure what else to call it, I'm removing oddments of thread from my lace bobbins ready for the next project...although I'm not sure what the next project will be. I still have lace on my folding travel pillow but I may set up something simple to play with next week. I have a half finished project on another pillow that I'm lost interest in :-( so I may just cut the bobbins off and file them away.

The power went off yesterday and blew the cutout for the sockets in the house, I couldn't flip the switch to reset everything so all appliances were unplugged and Ian did the deed when he got home. As a result I had to crawl under my computer desk to access the sockets and covered myself in dust!

This isn't helping my lungs so this morning everything was pulled out and dusted or thrown away!!
I now have a neater, dust free work area, still cluttered but not so bad.......just in case you are wondering, I'm still coughing :-(

Friday, 29 January 2016

sketch books

I've been trying to find my old schools sketch books following a chat with an FB friend but so far mine have proved to illusive but I did find a sketchbook that was my grandfathers.

I think it dates from around 1920 so he was maybe 13ish so a typical school boy book, trains, planes and motorcycles!

Although there are a few pages of notes and shading exercises .

although I'm not sure whether this plane is landing or crashing!!

The one thing that I do know is that my Dad also had a love of planes and bikes which he passed down to me x

Thursday, 28 January 2016

Peace and quiet

very quiet day yesterday, caught up with my sleep,a little stitching, a lot of thinking and an interesting discovery.

Many years ago, as a young married 20 something I met a young German biker in the South of France who we kept in touch with for a few years. We would visit him in Germany and he would come over here. We lost contact around 1988.

During my sort out I found a very faded piece of paper with an a name and address written on it in pencil, googled the name and easily found a photo of this person who still lives in Germany and his works address.

The question I write to him? I have wondered where he is every time we travel to Germany but haven't been able to track him down before, we did get on very well and losing touch was probably down to getting divorced etc at that time.

Any comments ?

Wednesday, 27 January 2016

wet and windy

It is getting very windy outside and rain is forecast for later today when the storm that hit states at the weekend sweeps across the UK. Already there are reports of HGVs being blown over in Scotland so I guess that I'll be staying inside today and continuing with the mini sort out.

I attacked the computer drawer earlier, its much tidier now :-)

and I found a couple of lace patterns in there, they should be in my files but one of them is really pretty so I may be tempted to put it on one of the pillows to give me a change from embroidery.

speaking of embroidery, I've added another stitch....

and I found some lovely silver grey merino wool partly knitted into a hat :-) beautiful colour.

Tuesday, 26 January 2016

Spiegel Tent

Since today has been spent doing housework etc I thought I would share photos of the Spiegel Tent that spent some time in Nottingham last October.
Speigel Tent is Dutch for tent of mirrors and I found the following info about the one that landed up on our Market Square.

Old Market Square, Nottingham
Marlene Dietrich has performed in it, and Marilyn Monroe loved it. It’s over a century old, and it’s the largest surviving ‘tent of mirrors’ in the world! Now, visit The Spiegel Tent in Nottingham!
Nottingham’s Spiegel Tent, has spent its life travelling the world from New York to Sydney, the Dutch Lowlands festival, and now the East Midlands! The Spiegel Tent will bring unique and wonderful entertainment to The Old Market Square, Nottingham.
The Spiegel Tent is a beautiful European mirrored tent – as well as a travelling dance hall, bar and entertainment salon. Featuring a beautiful red velvet draped ceiling, stained glass windows, private booths and gorgeous period lighting. The circular central stage allows the entire audience of the tent to easily see the performance. There are only a handful of these unique and legendary ‘tents of mirrors’ left in the world today.

So how could I resist having a closer look inside?

 Stepping inside .....

Fantastic ! although the problem with mirrors is.......

sometimes they capture what you don't usually see !!

Monday, 25 January 2016

under the bed

Remember I said that I wasn't sure what was under the bed? I knew that the 3 man tent that we use on bike rallies was there and I know that our own 2 man tents are stashed away in the cupboard, so where did this come from???

Obviously never been used and also far too lightweight for the sort of camping we do either together or individually. All we can think of is that we must have won it in a raffle at a bike rally??

There was a very large bag of fabric which I was well aware of and a suitcase full of lace samples from a lace factory that closed down 15/20 years ago.

I'll probably open the envelopes and stash all the lace together in a vacuum bag for the time being and get rid of the suitcase which is ancient, I remember it being used for family holidays when I was a kid !!.
Also hiding under there were two motorcycle seats.........

and looking at the chest of drawers with the unknown contents, you can just see yet another seat hiding underneath. These are all for just one of the bikes which despite being old has a perfectly good seat on it!!

Now the carpet is filthy from the dust on these items so I don't think much sewing is going to get done today, at least it will give the vacuum cleaner a good workout:-)

The last thing a found was a flat box which I had totally forgotten was my 30 year certificate from my employer......strange to think that I have worked for them for more than 30 years.

Couldn't resist, todays sunrise.

Sunday, 24 January 2016

not a lot going on

Today has been a sit and stitch day, I don't know whether its a reaction to being out yesterday but I really seem to be full of the asthma cough today.

So I'm back on the doodle band and watching a bit of catch up TV whilst I do it. I just wish I knew why some days are so different to others.

My plans for the week now include sorting my wardrobe out, having a look under the bed to see what is stashed there as well as the tent and bags of fabric and checking what is in the chest of drawers that we never use.

I also want to start collecting together recipes from the various groups I belong to and put them in some sort of order. I always have the urge to bake etc when I'm off work ill :-)

Saturday, 23 January 2016

not a lot going on!

Hi, not a lot of creativity going on at the moment, just housework, shopping  and hospital appointments!

I've now been off work for around 5 weeks with at least two more to go. Its such a change from working full time and even though I'm having to take things slowly its given me the change to get back to doing things I love. The doodleband is coming along nicely and I think that this is because it was all the sampling of new techniques that I really enjoyed whilst doing my City and Guild certs years ago that I really enjoyed.

The scale of my thread collection is huge, I used to buy up any embroidery threads that I saw in charity shops and carboot sales!! I have a drawer full....The same with machine threads.

( top drawer embroidery threads, 2nd machine threads, 3rd lace threads, 4 misc bits and pieces)

This means I have been able to make the bags and indulge in a bit of stitching without having to go out and buy the necessary materials. I have a similar collection of lace making threads and equipment. I suppose its always been in the back of my mind that having this stuff put away will give me comfort when I don't have any funds for any reason.
It's probably not surprising that I also have a box of paints and inks etc!!! I'm just a creative hoarder!

Looking for a cheerful picture to brighten up the about Disney on Ice 2008 Finding Nemo?

Friday, 22 January 2016

bags finished!

The goodie bags are finished, all 50 of them!! this means that I can tidy away the material and my sewing machine, sweep the floor and settle down to some more embroidery!!

now, did I ever show you my needle case ? I used to have a stash of woollen blankets, all very old ( some still had the wartime utility label! ) and over the years they have been cut down, dyed and used in various projects. A small piece of one of them ended up as my needle case ( I have two but the other is awol at the mo) just the right size to slip in my bag.

My next job is to sort out the next colours to use on my doodle band then I can start to stitch :-)
TTFN :-)

Thursday, 21 January 2016

still sewing

Hi, another day of sewing the bags interspersed with throwing out the odd book. I'm trying to be strict with the books but its not easy. I'm thinking just 2/3 books per technique, do I really need so many on embroidery stitches when they all seem to cover pretty much the same ground. If a book has only one or two unusual ones, I can soon make notes and keep them with the cover.

I'm using this to make the cords, I've worked out that the length needed for each bag is from the end of the bed to the bookcase on the stairs......that's why there is a clamp on the bookcase ( I had to explain this the other night!)

I will be back with the embroidery once I've finished the bags!!

Back to 2015

We have a local show each September which always falls on the first week of our holidays so we generally miss it. Last year, family commitments meant that we were still around so I took a stroll across to the school folds where it is held.

There were many attactions, inluding the local jazz band.

 The Flower show

 and the dog show, although this pup found that he was to small to compete !!