Crafting, fun and friendship

Crafting, fun and friendship

Wednesday, 10 January 2018

WOYWW 449

IF A PICTURE PAINTS A THOUSAND WORDS....

FINALLY! I actually feel better today after nearly three weeks of being poorly - hooray! Even though the symptoms did go a bit last week, it's been the lack of energy that's been a b*&^%r. The only thing I felt like doing was a little light crafting!

Do you remember I'd been 'volunteered' onto the WI Banner committee? Well, one day, I just had the feeling that I should crack on with it.

Look at the state of that desk! I'd just pulled out various bits of fabric to see what was needed for the panel - the floor was even worse! And armed with interfacing and bondaweb, I just set to, thanking Wipso and Twiglet for their great lesson on 'how to' a couple of years ago. And it just all came together, nothing went awry - isn't it odd how some projects go swimmingly and others are like drawing teeth? This was the former.

The name of my WI (Womens' Institute) is Pembrey & Burry Port, encompassing the two communities that are situated side by side. The lighthouse is THE feature of Burry Port, it's quite a cute little building on the harbour.

The other building is St Illtyd's Church in Pembrey - it's an early 12th century building which has certainly seen some history, including me singing in the choir as a youngster, Gordon and I getting married there and both our boys being christened.

I left the church quite plain as the panel will be passed on to Belinda, who is going to do embroidered details and beading.

I added the black metalwork railings though!

Ta Dah!!

After embroidering etc, the panel will be sewn onto a blue banner and have coloured braid or cord sewn on to hide the raw edges. This is the first project I've ever attempted like this - I hope the ladies like it. 

I needed a little zippy bag in which to keep some of my banding stuff:

Love these colours - fresh and zingy - just what's needed to make me happy in these dull grey days.

Just a quick little make but it'll be very useful and save me rummaging around the bottom of my backpack to find important stuff! The pegs and magnets are for holding down music on my stand (believe me, the merest breath of wind will see your sheet music soar into the sky!), the Vaseline keeps my slides lubricated (Twiglet, I can hear you sniggering from here!) and the valve oil is brilliant for keeping everything working as it should. If only there was something similar for humans :-D

Sorry I've gone on a bit today but I enjoyed making the two items and wanted to share!

Have a good week xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

WOYWW 448

THE YEAR TURNS ANEW, 
ON THE SPINDLE OF YOUR LIFE.

I was genuinely sorry to miss posting in last week's WOYWW but I had the flu and wasn't well at all, The whole family had it over Christmas so it has been an enforced period of calm (apart from the coughing!)  Anyhow, it's the New Year's Edition this week and so I'd like to wish all the Deskers and any other readers the happiest and healthiest 2018 - may you have fun and adventures :-D

Believe it or not, I have done some crafting in the past couple of days, once I started to feel less grim.
I've added to the pile of beanies that are destined for my cousin's work with homeless people in Swansea, I've used my brand new Fiskars fabric scissors which were a prezzy (and awesome!!)  The Land Rover fabric is going to be a drawstring bag for my great-nephew Felix - I know, I don't look old enough to have a great-anything, do I? Lol!

Just thinking about the placement of a pocket - the same stripy fabric will be the lining of the bag as well.

I've had a little tidy of the shelves - wonder how long they'll stay that way?!

And had a first go at colouring with my Spectrum Noirs, another crafty prezzy! I've enjoyed using them a lot, such a difference from the normal felt tip pens I've had in the past. I always feel as if I'm wasting time when I sit down to colour, ridiculous really, but it's something I'm going to factor in more over the next year.

We bought some new bird feeders before Christmas, ones with cages so the jackdaws and magpies can't get at the middle. It's been a great success, we've enjoyed sitting in the kitchen watching the birds tuck in. I love all the little birds....
..but these long-tailed tits are adorable. Always in gangs, they chatter away as they attack the fat balls - so sweet!

And the robin is always around to hoover up the bits that fall to the ground! Honestly, it's better than watching tv :-)

Hope you've had a great festive season! May 2018 be a wonderful year xxxxxxx


Wednesday, 20 December 2017

WOYWW 446

HAVE YOURSELF A MERRY LITTLE CHRISTMAS....

Before you know it, we're nearly there! Such a lot has happened in the past three weeks what with visitors, playing with three different bands etc etc that things have rather snuck up on me. I'm looking forward to the two weeks break between Christmas Day and resumption of life, the universe and everything on January 7th :-D

My desk:
It's a combination of craft and wrapping station!  The Christmassy fabrics are out because someone asked for a last minute doggy bandanna and I haven't put them back on the shelves yet. There's a big box of wrapping paper that will shortly be put to good use. Just behind that is a my big butch stapler that I needed to fix cellophane onto a hamper - the gold metal tube behind that is my Irish Penny Whistle, which was in the same box as the stapler!! Don't ask me why, things must have got flung in when we were packing up our old house last August!

Other things that appeared out of boxes are these little Christmas trees that I made a few years ago - simple idea but they do make me smile and they're on the sideboard in the hall now.

Julia bought us a new glass bauble when she was here two weeks ago - it's in the middle near the bottom. And I made a beaded decoration at WI last month, it's the bright green tree top right. I love my decorations - these are the old friends that resurface each December whereas these...

.. are new. Not only did we 'downsize' to a bigger house and have to buy more furniture (!!) but we had to get some extra decorations too. Crazy but we've loved it!!

Lots of you mentioned the jigsaw last week - it seemed to strike a chord with many. I'm quite proud to tell you that hardly any dinners were burned over the course of the week and yet the jigsaw got completed without too much hassle :-D

A perfect picture to finish with - Happy Christmas to all you lovely deskers. Have a wonderful time with your family and friends. Thank you for all the amazing support and lovely comments over the year and may 2018 be happy, healthy and fun filled xxxxxxx

Wednesday, 13 December 2017

WOYWW 445

STITCH BY STITCH, HOUR BY HOUR....

Thanks for all the great comments last week - I'd like to welcome Laurie and Pam as two new followers. Thanks ladies. hope you enjoy the nonsense that is my blog!

I've given up making excuses for my lack of anything remotely resembling sewing! But there has been some action in the JanCave this week - woohoo! My son and future DiL are staying for a few days and some holey coat pockets needed mending:

It's hard to tell what I've been doing really, which is probably a good thing as the mend wasn't terribly pretty! However, it means that a perfectly good old winter coat now has functional pockets again, which can only be a good thing and took all of five minutes to do.

There's something else on the desk though:
Some purchases from The Flying Goose quilt shop in Llandeilo! The fabric is for a table runner which I'm determined to get done in the next couple of days - the interfacing and Bondaweb are for an applique project to be done in the new year. I'm on the Banner team in the Womens' Institute - a new one has to be made and I got 'volunteered' to help. Story of my life :-D  More on that in a few weeks' time.

I've been knitting for some little ones in our family - I have loved using this Cherish yarn, it's so lovely to knit with and the resulting pattern is like Fairisle without the grief of intarsia! Twiglet gave me that top-down cardi pattern ages ago, it's brilliant because it's knitted all in one and therefore requires no sewing up at all!! My sort of pattern :-D The piece on the left is the back of a jumper (the sides have curled in which makes it look a bit weird!)
I made that table runner a couple of years ago - in fact, I bought the fabric from Janet Fairythoughts in C&H Fabrics, so I think of her so much when I bring it out of the Christmas box each year.

It's been fun deciding where our old favourite decorations are going to go for the first Christmas in our new house - I may have bought a couple more to fill up the space (so much for downsizing....)

I love the trees - they brighten up our hall very nicely indeed!

But some family traditions remain the same no matter where we happen to be living and this is one - the Christmas Jigsaw!

Here's Lexy, my DiL-to be, doing a grand job of sorting through the pieces. It's a snowy street scene, of which there have been many this past week, but fortunately not here in Wales. As much as I love snow, it would have severely hampered the band's carolling. I can't leave a jigsaw alone once it's out however, so I foresee a few burnt dinners over the next few days!!

Have a great week xxxx

Wednesday, 6 December 2017

WOYWW 444

SHE'S A ...BAD INFLUENCE...

Well, dear WOYWWers, there's been no desk action again this week but there is something new in the craft room!

Aha, yes it is she who must be obeyed! Julia's been staying for a couple of days, needless to say, there hasn't been many awkward silences, we're making up for lost time :-D

A recently picked up flyer had mentioned Art in the Hall, which was in a very small village not far from Llandeilo. We didn't know what to expect really, would it be the sort of crochet toilet roll cover sort of fair? Oh no, it was really high end and in the most magnificent building. The Aberglasney Estate is nearby, where there have been recently restored gardens, so I guess it was all part of it. There were lots of beautiful crafts to admire:

I loved that chunk of elm which had been coloured - it wasn't lacquered as such but glowed in the sunshine.

There was any amount of glorious ceramics....

And a few hares never go amiss :-D  There was gorgeous (and expensive) furniture and textiles. What an unexpected pleasure and it had all been started off by two friends, one of whom attended the same grammar school as me, so there was quite a bit of reminiscing!

And then we carried on to Llandeilo. Gin tasting had to be done.

Mine (on the right) was rhubarb gin and Julia's was an Eccentric - I rest my case, M'Lud.

*Grin*

We had a seat at a bench overlooking the open kitchen and learned a lot from the very calm lady chef. I don't think she got fed up with our questions :-)

Then we went to Deb's Wool Shop and I remembered to take a pic of all of us this time! There had been a party held by the Knit and Natter Group who were still there, chatting away. Any shop that has crisps and chocolate cake on the counter has to be good right?! Deb and Chrissie are lovely people and so helpful too. I strongly recommend you visit this amazing shop - I know a good B&B in Burry Port!!

And finally, I forgot to put this pic up last week - Erna, the Dutch friend who cleaned my Janome, is a quilter par excellence. This is the last quilt she made. I am in awe......

It is gobsmacking! I wouldn't even know where to begin - or even have the patience to complete such a project. Absolutely wonderful!!

The Carolling has started big time with band, so the only crafting I'll be doing is yarn related. Hope you're having more success than me, lol!

Have a great week xxxxxxx

Wednesday, 29 November 2017

WOYWW 443

WE GOTTA GET RIGHT BACK TO WHERE WE STARTED FROM...

Hello, lovely WOYWWers, hope you're all well! Life just overtook me last week, hence the lack of a post. I won't even begin to list what my life involved but suffice to say, it included paint, music, a surprise visit from Australians and band recordings. You can't say that my life isn't varied!!

BUT...the biggest thing I did was get the JanCave back together, hooray!
I realise it doesn't look much different but when I tell you that rough walls have been plastered and navy and black paint has been covered up, then you can see that quite a lot has been done. Do you like my funky new curtains? They were cheap as chips from Dunelm and I love them. I took the opportunity of moving back in to sort out all my baskets of bits and pieces on the shelves, so they're all lovely and tidy (for the moment, lol!)

And my stash of fabric and yarn has been considerably slimmed down. My crafting of choice is still knitting at the moment - the pile of beanies is growing ever higher :-D

We haven't seen our Aussie friends for quite some time and it was brilliant to catch up - it's one of those friendships where the conversation just starts again. Erna is an amazing quilt maker and very knowledgeable about machines - we were having a discussion about suitable stitches for applique and before I could change thread, she asked if I clean my machine regularly. *embarrassed cough* Well that'll be a big fat NO then. She set to like a woman possessed, ferreting out a disgusting amount of fluff!
This in depth archaeological investigation involved paint brushes, tweezers and quite a lot of tools that came with the machine that I'd never used. I will from now on, honest!

And she used screwdrivers too - impressive stuff! Seriously, she is right, doing this more often will help extend the life of my Janome. I'm too embarrassed to show you the amount of stuff that was extracted though!

I took them to Llandeilo (and yes, we did visit the Ginhaus!) - this is the little street where a lot of lovely little shops and galleries (and Ginhaus) are located.
It's like Diagon Alley! 

Do you remember the yarn shop I showed you last time? Well, the lovely owner Deb commented on how thrilled she was to get such wonderful remarks. We've struck up an email friendship and she was in the shop when I took Erna in. What with us hugging and the mad Australians enjoying themselves, there was a real party atmosphere in there. Stupidly, I didn't get a photo of us together but I did take these shots of the windows:
There are the fluffy Christmas trees/Cousin It as part of the display!

There are some very neat knitters and crocheters in this part of Wales!!

Hope you all have a wonderful week - I may try and make something with my Christmas fabric, if there's time :-D


xxxxxxxxxx



Wednesday, 15 November 2017

WOYWW 441

BAA BAA BLACK SHEEP, HAVE YOU ANY WOOL?

Well, the black sheep might not have much but there's lots of yarn on my blog this week! But first, the Jan Cave progress.....

It's still all piled up as we've been doing the gloss painting of the doors and skirting boards. But it's all finished now and we'll be putting everything back together this week - woohoo!! *Happy Dance*  I shall take this opportunity to have a bit of a sort out too, I'm sure the stash can be rationalised somehow!

So the only crafting I've done this week has been knitting:
I'm using up my chunky yarns matching the plain colours (in the bag) to the coloured yarns in the box - nothing special, just beanie hats for a charity thing.

I have bought some more bits and pieces:
Three more balls of chunky for hats or something and some buttons - well, you can never have too many huh?!

I went with my mate Helen to Llandeilo on Monday, primarily to have lunch at the Gin Haus, where I'm getting to be a bit of a regular!  But we found another wool shop in another part of the town:

Oooh, so much choice and so many colours....I didn't know where to start.

I was a happy bunny!

I loved the way the displays were laid out...

I may have bought some of these..... :-D

Helen succumbed too - well, it would have been rude not to! The place is called Deb's Wool Shop - I don't think they do online sales but if ever you come to stay with me, I'll take you there (and the GIn Haus...*grin*)

All the shops in Llandeilo were getting ready for a festival this weekend and the girls in the wool shop had been making Christmas trees out of tinsel yarn:
There are patterns for these but they'd all sold. They remind me of Cousin It from The Addams Family :-D

Finally, this is the view from the front of my house - it's been weird weather recently and we saw a cracking rainbow. 
Do you think the owners of that white house would mind if we dug up their garden looking for the pot of gold?? Maybe not, lol!!

Have a cracking week xxx