Many people ask me what I do. Well, apart from being very happily retired, I do crafts! Multiple crafts, some old, up-cyclingn, some new and some for fun. This love of crafts has led me to teach my art on board cruise ships! Simply put I am cruising the oceans sharing my love of crafts. I do not profess to being a qualified teacher but what I am good at is creating a group of people bonded by craft projects. I like to think that I inspire people to “have a go”
I cater for around 30 people per project and have to take all materials with me. There’s little opportunity to shop for glue or yarn off the coast of Africa! (Where I am at the moment) This is an onerous task and involves lots of “arguments ” with suit cases.
The really hard work is in the prep. Deciding what projects to offer and how much fabric will be need to be bought. The reward is seeing someone struggle with a project and being delighted with the result.
I arrived at my Happy place today, driving through heavy rain and mist into the sunshine. My happy place is also known as my Craft Caravan!
Today I hit the knitting! This is another UFO ( unfinished object) from my Supersized stash! It started out as a sweater project but was too big so is being reincarnated as a throw or Afghan. Well it was BIG!
I love this yarn and it is so soft. Hopefully it will be good to snuggle under when eventually finished. I will keep you posted!
Also I was not in a happy place when I first arrived as my Peace Lily was very sad. I’m guilty of neglect as I have not been here for a few weeks due to global travelling. The Peace Lily is now in intensive care and hopefully recovering. I must admit to running more of a Hospice for plants than a nursery as my fingers are definitely not green.
Following on from my previous post I have now completed our “cafe style” table and chairs. The whole process was simple and cheap to complete. I bought a second chair for £10, paint cost £6.95 and the cloth was in my fabric stash ( bought in Italy about 5 years ago) It sits perfectly in my Welsh cottage. Now what can I do next??
I’m attempting a little slow stitching, which in other times was called “embroidery!”
Slow stitching centres around the “make do and mend” and “waste not, want not” ethos of yesteryear. It is a nod to the generations that came before ours in which reusing and recycling were necessary and admirable.
This is not a complicated process which relies on numerous fancy, perfectly executed stitches and fastidious neatness. Rather, we embrace the timeworn nature of our materials, and the individuality of our stitching methods.
Simplicity is key.
We are passionate fabric lovers, and we have a stash of “just because” pieces we’ve found along the way to prove it. We love to hunt at flea markets, charity stores and church fetes for the cloth treasures and embellishments we will repurpose. We can lose ourselves in the online world of instagram and etsy…..oh the possibilities…
I am currently using some of my vintage stash to create a Hexi quilt, which is the ethos of the Slow stitching movement.
I’ve made an attempt to save the World this Christmas but suspect it’s not a single handed job!
I bought and wrapped my gifts in recycled brown paper. Then realised that the roll I had bought was wrapped in plastic!! Come on WH SMITH!
I used fabric scraps to tie the gifts up but then realised that I still needed sticky tape (because I’m a rubbish wrapper!)
Some recycled gift wrapping ( the paper is recycled not the gifts)
Scrappy Tin ( that has been recycled)
I only bought Charity Christmas cards from the actual charities but spent a fortune on postage stamps! I had thought of not sending cards this year but I actually enjoy receiving them. Any novel ideas about recycling them next year?
Well I have tried so I will try even harder next year . I’ll drink plenty of wine then I can recycle the bottles!
As seems to be a frequent occurrence I had the idea that 2019 will be the year of project completion. Then I remembered that I have this idea every year!
WIP= Work in progress
PhD = Projects half done
Current WIP ( that I can recall)
- Bee Keepers Quilt
- Knitted squares Afghan-all one colour
- Patchwork Quilt (three quarters done)
- Skirt-nearly done for Christmas
- Hitchhiker scarf
- Beaded bracelet ( nearly complete cruise project)
- Zippered pouch ( years old)
- Crochet shawl kit (never started)
- Two tunic tops (not started but required for trip in February
And the list goes on………
When I am brave enough to adventure towards the bottom of my stash I am sure that there are many more projects jut waiting to be finished.
I’m also thinking of starting a one woman campaign for sustainability
“A jumper is for ever not just for Christmas”
Apparently Charity (thrift) shops are swamped with old/ nearly new Christmas sweaters. Come on guys get off this bandwagon. Refined reuse recycle and more importantly don’t waste your money!
I’m currently child minding Gorgeous Granddaughter but I’m not very sure whose looking after who! She’s a competent teenager and just needs a responsible adult in the house! Mind you, how did I get the title “competent adult”?
Because I’m here for more than a week I’ve come fully equipped with multiple crafts including my sewing machine. Today I’ve been trying to improve my beading skills. The first challenge of the day was getting the lid off the glue, which I managed with the help of boiling water and brute force. The second challenge of the day will be cooking dinner in a strange kitchen!
I’ll show you the end result when complete.
Last year I bought a kit from Scheepjes to make a “crochet along shawl”. The kit, when it arrived, was a delight of yarn squishiness. It contained delightful jewel colours and small extras. It was like receiving a lovely gift ( even though I’d paid for it)
Well I missed the crochet along (CAL) by months so Darling Daughter printed the patterns off for me.
I decided to take the kit away with me and start. No crochet hook ( I have dozens at home) OK, I found a local knitting shop and treated myself to a hook with a lovely handle ( not cheap). I started the shawl very half heartedly as I couldn’t work out when I would wear it! So I thought I’d use the kit to knit a jumper which I am more likely to wear.
I found the perfect sweater on line. Sadly it was published in a book and together with postage was unreasonably expensive. So I resisted the purchase and found a nice, free, pattern in a magazine which I had.
Guess what? No Knitting needles! Dozens at home so I went to the local charity shops which all appeared shut for the royal wedding. Next day I found anther yarn shop and “treated” myself to some high end bamboo needles. I can always justify spending by telling myself that I deserve this treat!
Trying hard, I knit a tension square which suggested that I needed larger needles. Oh no! I think I will wait until I get home.
You might remember that I was making Bunting for my super step granddaughters birthday BBQ on my last blog. Well job done and I was really pleased with the result.
In the meantime I have also been sorting through my stash of “stuff”. A local charity shop in Chester, The Share Shop Chester, had put out an appeal for fabrics, sewing patterns and notions. Three sewing machines had generously been donated and are scheduled to go abroad to enable refugees to make their own clothes. I had a good sort out and have sent over forty sewing patterns for them, some dress length fabrics and a pile of threads. It’s great to know that they are going to a good cause. Not only that but I have actually made some space in my craft room.