Sunday, 7 August 2011

Catch up time

This is going to be quite a long post, so please feel free to leave now if you haven't much time. 

I have been busy, mainly going round in circles - which brings me perfectly to my latest Postman's Knock card from Jo Urbani whose ability to create a collage would be hard to match. For my theme of 'Windows' she has created a porthole view of the sea.  This brings back memories of a School Cruise I went on in the mid-sixties on a re-fitted troup carrier. We had portholes in our dormitory and until we docked at the first port I was sure it was on the port side, only to be really shocked on going on deck that it was the starboard.  We had to go down so many zig-zag stairways that I lost all sense of direction and I suppose I hadn't bothered to study the directon the water was passing by too closely.  But I digress, perhaps you can see why I have been getting nowhere fast this week.
This is the card I made for Jane on the theme Overhead.  I couldn't decide on one idea so I thought I would draw them all as 'inchies' . The little images brought back lots of memories of drawing illustrations on workcards when I was a teacher. This was before computers and clip art. I used to spend hours in the evenings drawing and writing on cards with felt tip pens and then covering them with clear sticky back plastic. So in a way this card was an easy option.

During Open Studio week Sally and I were invited to have a stall at local photograph group's annual exhibition as they want to broaden their appeal to the public (Shillington and Distric Camera Club, Sat 17th Sept, Village Hall, Hexton Road, Barton-le-Clay) so I have been replenishing my stock.
I have enjoyed making these little Needle Cases from scraps of felt.

and I have made some more Book Covers.

Below is an experimental bag I have been working on for weeks and weeks.
The base is woven strips of red, white, pale and navy blue. I was doubly inspired by the royal wedding bunting and a yatching/sea-side theme and after stitching the woven felt down, spent some time emboidering it.
The emboidery is a mix of formal circles and drifting lines of running stitch and beads.  Finally I couched on cord in wavy curves to represent rope, or the encrusted casts left by some sea worms. amd stitched french knots and little pearl beads in the curves.

I managed to get some sea-splash quilter's cotton for a lining, which I forgot to photograph and it is fastened with a magetic clasp.  The shape of the bag is a bit odd and it is not very practical as you could lose your pennies in the point. But I enjoyed making it and finished if off with a hand made tassel and a couple of charms.

What do you think?

This is the bag I have made from the piece of slashed work I made ages and ages ago. I have lined it with blue gingham.  As it is heavily quilted it would be good to keep your packed lunch cool.  I can just fit a A4 sketch book into it. 

I shall be taking these to Barton and then putting them in my Etsy shop, which could do with a bit of refreshing. 

Whilst in the garden trying to find somewhere to photograph my bag in the few minutes the sun came out I thought I would snap the veg.
At this time of year our plates runneth over.  We ate runner beans nearly everyday last week. They are my favourite, and a huge plateful has very few calories.

We only have one 'wigwam' of plants, but it is more than enough for the two of us.
By the middle of the week we will be feasting on these purple beans, which turn green when you cook them, leaving the water  purple (Ooh, now there's an idea). They are good cold in a salad.

We have had lots of mange tout peas already.

I highly recommend yellow courgettes - the skins are so less leathery than the green variety especially if you like them raw in a salad.

And this is a knobbly ridge cucumber. They have a vey thick skin, but the flavour is excellent.

And finally, thank you for sticking it out! This is another appeal.

I desperately want to buy some more of these beads.  They are glass 6mm rocaille, pony or crow beads - take your pick on the name. I bought a bag from E-bay a few months ago, but I can no longer find them anywhere even after trolling through HUNDREDS of pages on E-bay and Amazon and Google. I have visited every local outlet too and they do not seem to be sold in the UK anymore.  I can get strands of single colours from the U.S. but that works out very expensive. I put them on the cords on the book covers (see the above picture) and my purses. The plastic ones do not have the weight or aesthetic appeal of the glass variety. (The bronze ones here are 4mm)
I have found some on Etsy, although the colours aren't as pretty, these are pearly but I will probably get those, BUT if you know of a stockist near you could you let me have their e mail or telephone number?  I am sure somewhere there must be some old stock! Also I know lots of you enjoy car boots and craft fairs, if you see any I would happily pay up plus postage and package. They do not have to be pearlized, but they must be GLASS and about 6mm diameter with a large hole of about 2mm.  The plastic ones are usually 9mm.

If you have stuck with me to the end - thank you, and I wish you all a very good week.