Monthly Archives: April 2014

Why Knit Socks?


Failure to plan is planning to fail!


Failure to plan is planning to fail!

I spend far too much time thinking, dreaming and planning all of the dozens of projects that I am definitely going to create and make. If I am honest I do not spend much time actually doing so I am going to adopt the J F D I philosophy.(Just F**** ing Do It)
Now I’m not really prevaricating, but on this road trip I don’t have my sewing machine with me as we are in a campervan. I have knit one, yes one mini hexipuff-see earlier blog-which is nothing in the scheme of life plans so I bought a magazine. I know! This is back to the dreaming,inspiration and going to do! I AM going to sew myself a summer dress when we get home. This also gives me the excuse to search out some glorious fabric. The magazine contained a simple dress pattern which is hopefully, my way back to dress making. I have done lots in the past including wedding dress, evening dresses and child clothes, but I am a bit rusty.
My confidence has been somewhat restored by reading sewing blogs,watching TV programmes ie Great British Sewing Bee and You Tube. Where else can you learn to insert an invisible zip or apply a neat collar? Oh and by the way the magazine in question is Prima.
So watch this space and maybe I won’t only day dream!
PS Here are some of my favourite sewing blogs
🙋Did you make that?
😃The Rengade Seamstress
👍Go To Patterns and Co
🐝Tilly and the buttons
🐘Pillows A-LA-MODE

He’s got the whole World in his hands


He's got the whole World in his hands

This is the first time that I’ve blogged from my phone so please “bear with” as they say. The first noticeable difference is the predictive text so hopefully I won’t make too many mistakes.
Today we are camping on the shores of Derwent Water in The Lakes and it is a beautiful spring day.
We walked along the lake side having taken the launch from Keswick jumped off at Hawes End and walked around to Lodore Falls. A gentle start to a few weeks of walking. Benji really enjoyed it and has a new hobby posing for photos.
I would like to stay at the Lodore Falls hotel for Hubby’s BIG birthday in May but I will need to raid the piggy bank. We will see but I am confident that it could be a surprise as he doesn’t read this blog.

We’re On The Road Again!


We're On The Road Again!

We are off in Damnvan1 again tomorrow! A road trip taking in The Lakes, Cumbria and The Yorkshire Dales. I’ve packed all the essentials, especially the knitting, novels that I’ve been saving to read and clean pants!
We should have gone today but woke this morning and didn’t feel like going so we didn’t! This is a psychological breakthrough as not conforming to the 9 till 5 treadmill and doing what we want is a hard lesson to learn after a lifetime of working restrictions. Yippee! Freedom!
We are now more sorted, I’ve hoovered the lounge and packed the stuff we need, so away we go. I am looking forward to trawling the charity shops, exploring the craft venues, walking the hills and sampling the food emporiums. I am especially seeking beautiful and cheap china cups, gorgeous textiles for those projects that never quite happen and local wool from local sheep! I will report back as I get Internet access which can be sparodic, so see you soon! 💃

How About Dyeing Something accompanied by a tumbler of Sangria?


Harris Tweed Treasure


imageHarris Tweed Treasure

Eldest Son called for help this week. Problem was how to cover an old pub stool with a length of Harris Tweed fabric. Harris Tweed is a quality product, beautiful wool fabric, hand woven in Scotland.Gorgeous!

We deliberated, discussed,and finally decided on the best way forward. The stool had been dismantled and the “orange” legs are to be stripped and waxed at a later date. We cut out a large circle of tween and the same of wadding. We eventually decided to run a gathering thread around the edge of the tweed and pull it up over the stool to fit the seat. We were careful to smooth out the sides with no tucks or pleats. The fabric was very pliable but solid and rich. Son then used a powered staple gun to fix the cover onto the seat. Great result!
A disc of fine hessian is to cover the raw edges underneath. Application of the legs, when they are ready, will give a delightful finish to a quality product. Ah well! Only 19 more to go!

Dyeing and Vintage Thrift


imageDyeing and Vintage Thrift

I took a huge step of faith and decided to dye a white towel that was neither white nor beige,a white sheet that was off white and another towel that had seen better days. I had purchased a machine dye that was supposed to be a one step process some time ago. To be truthful, I was scared of dyeing chaos. You know the sort of thing, permanently blue hands or ruined washing machine or blue skin after bathing! Anyhow I went for it and spent an hour watching the interesting DARK blue water spinning around the machine and the items seeming nearly black. I had bought a denim blue dye. Hooray I was delighted with the results. The towels are a lovely shade of navy and the sheet a light denim. Everything looks fantastic and certainly has an extended life expectancy. Also the upholstery in Damnvan1 is blue so everything will co ordinate wonderfully.


When I was young long,long ago I had little money! Surprise! Surprise! It was in the sixties and along with the mini skirt came tights. These were a marvellous fashion statement as it meant you could wear mini skirts as short as you dared. Prior to this time there were only stockings and suspenders. I’ll say no more! Anyway, when I got a hole or a ladder in my tights the first emergency was to use clear nail varnish to stop the hole spreading. It was advisable to hold the tight off the leg whilst the varnish dried. If you didn’t it stuck to the leg!
When this emergency treatment failed or the hole got too big I would cut off the offending leg.( in the tights that is!) at the point where the panty starts. I always tried to buy the same shade of tights and saved the remaining leg,attached to the panty part until I had a matching pair. Now at this point I would wear a tight on each leg and two pairs of panties creating a “new” pair of tights. Job done!
In the event of different shades of tight legs I would boil the tights in a pan with soapy water and the colours would blend until they all became the same shade. Fantastic! Hole and ladder free tights and a warm waist down with two tight tops!

First Outing 2014


First Outing 2014

Damnvan1 has had her first real outing of this year. We took her to North Wales and had a great time walking and “playing house” in Damnvan. We took Benji for the first time and put up a porch awning for the first time. This has become a posh dog kennel as this is Benjis travel home.

We explored Betws y Coed, a lovely Snowdonian village. The weather was cold and bright. In fact perfect walking weather with stunning views of Snowdon and Moel Siobod mountains. We didn’t ascend these mountains but I climbed my own challenge along a waterfall, through lead mines and down to the Ugly House. Enough for one day.

As a note I have been blogging on but intend to keep Damnvan1 as my travel blog. Watch this space.

Third Time Lucky!


imageThird Time Lucky!

Yippee! I’ve won again! For the third weekend in a row I have won money, whoo hoo 💃 This week I won second place in the local pub’s sweep on the Grand National. The princely sum of £20 was handed over on Saturday evening. Mind you, by the time I had bought a round of drinks and a couple of extra glasses of wine to celebrate there wasn’t a lot of change! Still the joy of winning (again) was great.
The pictures today are of a blouse that I have just altered. I liked the colour, fabric and size but the elasticated bottom was not good. I felt too round when wearing it so I chopped off the elastic and hemmed the raw edge. Job done! I now feel better in it and if you feel better you look better.

Cake for Heroes



imageCake for Heroes

Saturday saw our Help For Heroes cake sale. Myself and many friends made cake, sponge cake, Bara Brith, cake and more cake. This was sold at a community cafe in our village. We made about £200 in aid of Help for Heroes charity. We had good fun, a good laugh and a good cake sample! The money will be donated this week and cake making will start in readiness for the next Charity cake sale.