Tuesday, 29 June 2010


two lots of chemicals battling it out in my insides, and today I feel crap! I am sure they will work eventually, this is day 13 and they are obviously kicking in.
I couldn't keep my eyes open today, but when I gave up and went back to bed (twice) my brain was in overdrive and I didn't get much sleep - utter tripe whizzing through my head over and over and over.

I really want to go swimming again, but at the moment I lack the energy, the enthusiasm and the inclination. I feel fat, crap, ugly, old and frumpy. Ack, you big black dog of doom, fek off and visit someone else please, give me a break!!

Sunday, 27 June 2010

Resistance is futile

I gave in, and started the damned clap. As I have said, it's for the clapotea party at Knit Camp, and as there's just over a month to go I thought i had better get on with it - plus Becca is nagging me ;-)

So - pink sparkly double knit, ideally bubblegum pink, and cheap as chips - could I find any? Could I hell - the alternative was to add in a twinkly thread to ordinary wool but I thought that might become a pain with all the dropped stitches.
I finally found some very cheapo stuff on Ebay, and took a gamble - couldn't find much out about it online or on Rav, but it's surprisingly OK - and that's coming from a life long cotton hater.

Sadly it isn't this exact shade (what I would call bubblegum) in reality, it's a bit darker but it's OK.
It is a bit splitty but nowhere near as bad as bloody awful Sirdar cotton, which I loathe. But why I felt the nee fot buy EIGHT fekkin balls of it I don't know ...
To try and alleviate the boredom - this is a VERY repetitive pattern - I am playing silly nonsensical games, such as dropping a marker every right side row and replacing it with a purl stitch - but I don't know what I will do when I run out of markers! Add them back in again? Sing? Say a new madeup swear word each time?

Bloody thing.
I plan on a lot of knitting through the football and the Grand Prix, and am vaguely aiming to have it finito by this time next weekend.

Some lined book-type bags, which I was going to put in the shop, but I think I will keep them for Knit Camp - I have enough material for at least another 5.

And this was my brekkie yesterday - yoghurt, strawberries, blueberries and a sprinkling of gluten free granola - lovely! It felt like one of those treat brekkies, like being on holiday or at my mums. Very nice.

I am trying to find pleasure in the small things (I always have really, but at the moment it's even more important., to try and battle this damned depression). So yesterday it was watering the garden, and my nice breakfast.

Saturday, 26 June 2010

Like buses ...

they all come at once (so to speak). Two posts in one day, you lucky lucky people.
I keep meaning to write this, and keep forgetting because I am a twit.


In a sauna, when you are a tad vulnerable in your swimming cossie, in my case with my towel cunningly draped to hide my tum, behaviour matters.

So to the man who often seems to join me in there - STOP BLOODY MASTICATING IN THE SAUNA YOU WEIRDO!

Yes, that does say masticating - when I said this over the phone to my mum ( 'mum the man in the sauna keeps masticating') I think she nearly had a coronary.
Chomp chomp chew chew, then he vigourously rubs himself (thankfully only his cheeks)(facial) and I get to hear all his bristles grating, then it's back to the chomp chomp chomp.

The temptation to lift one of MY cheeks (not facial) and let out a great big fart is immense.



A nice juicy pear?

Or a raw silk brooch?

I finally started my pink twinkly cpaotis last night and finished the increase section - I don't particularly like the finished thing, but there is a clapotea party at Knit Camp, so I 'have' to knit one - goes against the grain, but so be it ..
anyway, so far so good - photos to follow. I plan on an afternoon in the sun knitting.

I listed a mountain of 'things' on Artfire yesterday - I was planning on a craft fair today, but someone mentioned that it maybe wasn't wise when I am off work. Hey ho - anyway, without dwelling on that I listed loads of my 'stock' yesterday instead.
I seem to sew compulsively - I rarely rest or relax, always seem to need to be making making making, I don't know if that's a symptom of the stress or part of the cause or a way of coping, who knows. Either way, I need to relax!

So, an assortment of goodies from my Artfire shop.

The box bags are taking over! I still have another 100 to make (ideally) for Knit Camp - yikes.

These are proving to be as popular as I had hoped (I really like them), and 3 have sold straightaway.

Today I also plan on contining playing with the more abstract bags, in particular the tea cups one. I started one version, but wasn't too taken with part of it so am starting again.
Tea dyed union jacks ...

Enjoy your weekend in the sunshine - tomorrow the Grand Prix clashes with the football, so I will be channel hopping all afternoon - I am on sport overload, footy, the fabulous epic tennis and the racing!

Wednesday, 23 June 2010


outside the box, back to where I feel most comfortable. I need to make some money, that's the bottom line, hence sewing up a small storm lately - and so far the response to my bags is good.
I have the cards to tart up a bit to make them look better, and some other ideas on a back burner for wont of time at the moment. And energy.

But I also have ideas for bags that are more mini art quilt based, a bit left of centre, and finally let rip and had a bit of fun making myself one. All the time I was cutting and sewing I had my lovely friend Pat on my shoulder (not literally, she's in America) telling me to have fun with it, play with it.

So I did.

This was originally an idea I had for a small bag, so I slit it open.
The silk heart is padded and roughly stitched several times.

The wings are layers of fabric and muslin. I then started to have a bit of a play with some antique buttons, strips of silk, ribbons - the green leaf ribbon was a perfect find!
Very pleased with the finished bag, which I used today - it is unashamedly girly and romantic, and I like it a lot.

So then of course, never happy with one, I found an assortment in blues and creams - which is destined to become another bag, for sale this time.
And my very very favourite - I have an idea for tea cups and general madness involving a Union Jack flag ... watch this space.

Ah, and other news - spinning wise I am thilled that not only is my current spinning NOT overspun, it is all pretty equal, and when I checked it (which I rarely do but should) it is spot on 4ply when plied, so I am pleased. Must get the last bobbin spun up soon.

After the excitement of the footy I think it will be an evening of sewing, hand stitching some brooches and then curl up with Gibbs and my knitting, Bliss.

Monday, 21 June 2010


I had completely forgotten that the prickly huge bush at the side of the garden flowers - it certainly hasn't bloomed like this before! I don't particularly like the scent, it isn't as sweet as the tall tree but it is so so pretty!
As for the feeder - pound shop I love you.

My lettuce actually looks like lettuce, and is almost ready to start picking - and looks a damned sight better than the expensive crap I got from Sainsburys last week. Oranges, new potatoes and lettuce, all crap.
My lettuce, spinach and chard are all thriving, and the radishes are almost ready too, they have taken longer than expected but look pretty healthy.

Doesn't everyone have plant pots filled with shells?
A little house with a garden near the sea, that would be utter heaven.

Not a lot of knitting to show, expect some more stripes - might get the back finished by tonight. A fair amount of sewing going on, I might have a craft fair on Saturday, if not it will all go on Etsy or Artfire to try and fund Knitcamp.
But for now, pretty things other than crafting:

Friday, 18 June 2010

Scotty dogs!

I ordered some material the other day and was thrilled when it arrived this morning, loads better quality than expected and so pretty! It made me smile.
It is destined to become bags, probably one for my friend Michelle who loves Scotty dogs.

I can even forgive the scary butterfly...

I nipped to Marks & Spencers to get some of their delicious gluten free bread - so delicious that once again it was sold out, Bah.
Then spotted several women with sale bedding in their baskets so beetled over to have a nosy - 3 deep scrum of oldies - sheets reduced to £1 - yes, a pound! So i picked up 3 to use as lining for bags - then on another sale stand found some pretty cream duvet sets, reduced from £60 to £9, so one of those came home with me (not for cutting up, definitely not!).

So that was a nice bonus.
Then i came home and slept for almost 3 hours - awoke to a text from my friend Jean who had popped some late birthday goodies through the letterbox and some flowers and a cake on the step, so so king and thoughtful. I am genuinely touched.
Plus the pressies are gorgeous - a vintage cameo brooch, an ols silver spoon with a spinning wheel on the top and a little silver spinning wheel charm for my bracelet - they made me smile. Thank you Jean, you lovely kind lady.

I haven't done any knitting today so far but did get a bit done last night, on the stripey 4ply cardi of - er - stripes. Still not convinced it's a wise idea for this dumpy little body but I like how the variegated pinks looks against the black, We will see.

I am toying with changing the name and layout of this blog, I look at ones I like and read regularly and although I certainly don't want to copy them at all I am pondering why those work and this doesn't. Much. So be prepared for some fickle changing and probably changing back again over the  next few days.

Enjoy your weekends!

Thursday, 17 June 2010


is wonderful medicine (so long as I remember the sun cream, which I did). Downright hot today, thoroughly enjoyed sitting in the garden with my knitting and book, and an ice cream - and I wonder why I am fat ...

I don't seem to be finished much lately, but I do seem to be starting lots of things and maing a hell of a mess!
The bag at the top is now listed on sulkycat here, as is this one:

I am in a quandry - I need to sell to make some extra cash, but I also need to have about 200 of them to take to Knit Camp in a month! I think I have about 60 made, and sold one yesterday - I think I will list 6 on etsy and 6 on the Artfire link, and sew sew sew.

This one sold as soon as I put it online, and I have an order for another exactly the same, which I cut out today - must try and get more of this material.
At this moment in time I have Taggart on, and am surrounded by half sewn or cut out bags, and a huge mess.

I think I am just going to bundle the whole lot up into a bag, pop it on the table and ignore it - I fancy an hour of knitting before bed. I have another lot of tablets to start tonight, plus antibiotics for this damned cough, so I suspect I will be out for the count when I hit the hay.

Talking of which - bed and cake, a bed cake! Bliss!

Wednesday, 16 June 2010


Sludgey muted pretties!
I spotted a mini garden quiltalong ages ago, and said I was interested, then promptly forgot about it.

Then I received an email a couple of days ago asking if I still wanted to take part, paid my monies (which seemed quite hefty) - and today this little pile of loveliness arrived! Now I can see why it cost more than I had expected - the photo is very dark, I will take better in daylight tomorrow.

12 fat quarters from Moda's Evening Mist collection - not everyone's cuppa I would imagine as it's generally quite sombre, but I really like it.This kit takes me out of my comfort zone - I don't usually follow patterns or use kits, and some of the material is not what I would ever choose - and I think that's a good thing, it's so easy to get stuck in a rut.
Each month comes with a rather expensive button feature - this month's is a little wooden flower - and this month's block is lovely, a garden wheelbarrow with a bird perching on it. I like.

I am going to start this tomorrow, I can't seem to function properly today - too much time in the sun maybe. Whatever, I am a bit drowsy and lethargic.

In a minute I am going to cast on for tempest (Ravelry link) - not totally convinced stripes are a good think on my dumpy little bod but we will see - I am telling myself that if I wear it with gusto and glee it will be fine!

Black (of course)and this, which again is a crappy photo - it's a nice mix of pinks and greys - I have two skeins of it and quite honestly don't know what else to knit with it (and don't want to part with it).

Sooo.... that's it!

Tuesday, 15 June 2010


Hurrah for finishing things, and for standing up for your rights!
I had a bit of a nightmare returning the sewing machine yesterday, to cut a very long story short (involving a very rude manageress, a srrange man from Brother on the phone - we will send a repairman but he isnt a repairman and can only change your needle - what! You need to post the machine to us at your own cost - feck that mate) I finally, finally got what I wanted - ie to return a 2 month old fairely expensei machine that was broken and under guarantee still, and pay the extra to upgrade it,
Not the most complicated thing you would have thought ...

Anyway, I stood my ground, repeatedly explained that LEGALLY my purchase and contract was with the shop NOT the manufacturer, and that the law overrides shop policy - because shop policy is AGAINST THE LAW! Fools! I explained to the girl serving me that my issues wasn't with her whatsoever, but with her rude boss and the incorrect understanding of trading standards - and got what I wanted, eventually.

So my new Singer machine is home and so far so good, definitely more solid that the other (and after that appalling 'customer service' I will never ever buy or recommend Brother machines).
So sewing has been done, and things have been finito:
the skirt at the top is Amy Butler's Barcelona skirt, which I have had half made for a while. Tes it IS meant to be frayed! It's very easy to make and looks good on, perfect - finding summer skirts in black cotton isn't easy, so I plan to make at least one more.

I had some black and white ribbons, so there's one print at the front and a different one at the back - the skirt was a fraction shorter than I like so I added a couple of inches to the underskirt, and sewed the ribbon there. A bit quirky, I might have to trim down the frayed bits because they are a bit TOO frayed! Yes that's a verrry long zip, I picked up one destined to go in a bag by mistake, but to hell with it - it's all lined up and matched well, side seams too.
So that was one thing finished, and for me for a change!

Then on to a couple of bags to add to etsy - although I think these will be the first things to go on my Artfire account sulkycat, which I am going to try having seen several recommendations - it's a bit of a fiddle to set up but I suppose anything is the first time around.
I like this - and am equally pleased with the second:

Both are fully interfaced and also interlined, so they are squooshy. Nice size - as I say, very pleased with thse - third one should be finished tonight, I would have finished it earlier but I am soooo tired and headed to bed for an hour this afternoon instead.

Knitting - I have literally just plonked the bag containing the Old Mill Hoodie next to me to seam whilst Holby is on, it seems like ages since I finished any knitty goodness!

And to end the drama of the sewing machine, how about this for talent - the whole thing is edible.

Sunday, 13 June 2010

Busy weekend

As part of my trying to stay positive I remembered to take my camera with me when I walked down to the bus stop, because something rather pretty had caught my eye last time I was there (not literally, that would be rather painful). These smell incredibly sweet - are they dog roses or did I make that name up?
I also love cow parsley when it's huge and flowering, there's loads along the canal but it's not safe enough to go for a walk alone there anymore.

The bus was 35 minutes late but it was  abeautiful day - I peeled off my mac and made the most of it, and told myself I wasn't in a rush so it didn't matter.
And really, it didn't.

My sewing machine has died, which is really pissing me off. It's only 2 months old - the needle went from sewing perfectly to jamming against the foot plate in the blink of an eye:

I have had it apart and it seems it just needs shunting forwards a fraction, about 2 millimetres, but I can't do it. Bugger. It's from Argos and I have a sneaky feeling they will say they will repair it - I don't want it repaired, I want it replaced there and then, I need it!
So that's the expense of a taxi tomorrow, I have loads to do in town so I hope they will replace it, I really hope so, and that they will hang on to it for me until I have been to the post office and done my shopping - then the expense of a taxi home (although that bit is ok, as it would mean I had a new machine).

Grrrrr. If they agree I plan on upgrading it (yet again, this machine was an upgrade) for a Singer that's about £40 more. I have sold quite a bit of 'stuff' on Ravelry and Ebay this week, much needed Knitcamp funds that now looks as though it's sewing machine funds. What happened to good old solid machines that lasted 20 years?

I di proper cooking yesterday - it doesn't look as fab here as it did in reality, honestly!
Carrot, parsnip and cashew nut loaf ( I added fresh chilli and parmesan, whihc it needed), with spinach, walnut, blueberries and feta salad with a raspberry vinaigrette (couldn't find any in Marks so made my own - a bit on the oooooooh side with the sherry vinegar but still good!). Really enjoyed this and packed full of goodness.
Then I undid it all and made a rhubarb crumble to try out my Doves gluten free plain flour - big success, very pleased. The flour looks like cornflour, very fine and dense, and the crumble looks very smooth if that makes sense, and almost like coconut, but tastes great - very pleased with this. Crap for the weight loss plan, but good to know it's edible!

It gradually wend darker and darker today until I was sitting in this tiny room watching the Grand Prix in semi darkness - then it did this, Sheesh.
It's rumbled with thunder for a few hours but nothing happened except the rain, I love storms and thought we might have had a corker but no such luck!

Hard to believe sometimes that the pouring rain was like this two days ago ...

Friday, 11 June 2010


Loads of things to post.
You know when you think you haven't achieved anything except making a mess in every room in the house? And think there's absolutely nothing to show for it all? Well get your camera out and take photos of everything you actually did along the way, because you will have achieved so much more than you suspect.

Or, of course, you might have just made a hell of a lot of mess.
So, the cards are one thing - the glitter needs a tidy up (I like seeing things looming HUUUGE on my laptop screen, because the flaws show up), but I love the stamps and the card itself is nice quality.

See the wonky glitter? Easy to touch up, but I hadn't noited it at all until I took the photo. Going on etsy tonight / tomorrow in packs of three.

I like the envelopes.

Anyone who does actually reads this may remember that I wrote my craptastic book last November, for nanowrimo. It is a fairytale sort of book, with quilting and spinning running through it, and my idea was that each chapter had a pattern to link to it. Not that I am overly ambitious or anything, having never ever written a knitting pattern before. Foolish woman.
Anyway, instead of talking about it I decided to finally DO it, and started the first one last night. The malabrigo is gorgeous, in a very zingy green as you can see. Love it, love love love. Especially against the deep pink ( I think I will line it in a similar pink when / if it ever gets finished.

So that kept me busy late last night - I think I decided to cast on for it at about 10.30pm, watching Once Upon a Time in Mexico, which made me say 'Juan Sheet Does Plenty' out loud several times, much to my amusement.
Simple things and simple minds methinks ...

I also tried this, which is something I have never done before. The bag is linen lined with silk, and was fine. More than fine. Until I tried to attach the frame. Lordy what a mess. It reminded me of doing art with infants, I had glue EVERYWHERE. I am going to dismantle it, bin the bag bit and start again. I love how it looks, and absolutely adore the big bobbles (you can see me in them, that's scary!) but I made a dreadful mess.

Good fun though!

Ha. I love this - I want to wear it on my head and shout de hurdy gur! a lot, and run around with a whopping great knife.

It's a bag, upside down and inside out, and waiting to be finished - I really like this pattern and suspect several more will appear over the weekend to use up some of my material mountain.
And that's reminded me what I needed to go into the city centre for, more fleece. Bugger.

And this is for the weekend, part of my mission to cook something new every week. It looks ok, not mindblowingly brilliant ('add wheat free pasta' - er, that's a bit of a cop out isn't it!), but pretty good. And I can add fresh chilli to many of the recipes to perk them up!

And now that I have remembered what it was I needed from town I suppose I had better get some warpaint on and get ready for the bus.