My home is a small stone cottage in the Clwydian Hills of North Wales. Last week our central heating boiler died, so this week it is being replaced. Not a problem you might think! Well……
The cottage is something in excess of 100 years old. It is built from stone and then White rendered. In fact it’s an up and down sort of a building full of odd steps, nooks and crannys, but we love it. Anyhow, I digress, the boiler has arrived all shiny and new. The plumbers have arrived and needed to drill a hole through the outside wall.
The wall is 22 inches thick and made of Granite!! They’ve just broken through to the outside so I suspect that the job might take a little longer than planned. You wouldn’t believe the level of dust within the house, or how far it spreads. I thought of the following poem with a rye smile because dust I must!
I will show you the “after” pictures when it is eventually done!
I wasn’t going to buy anymore vintage powder compacts! Ha ha! I couldn’t resist this one that was for sale at this weekends show. I only payed £3 and it’s so pretty. These days I’m much more decerning over what I buy. My rules for collecting these gorgeous compacts are:
1) price. I check out on the internet what they are worth and how much I’m prepared to pay.
2) Make or manufacturer. I only buy “Stratton” compacts these days.
3) Condition. Many are unused and have never seen powder in their lives.
4) I do limit the design to floral these days. ( I do have others but only buy if exceptionally nice)
So, I have built up a small collection. They are ideal to collect as they are small, pretty and increasing in price.
During my recent working craft cruise one of the “makes” was a wall clock. I have done this project on a previous cruise and it always proves popular. We used vintage fabrics, wadding, strong card for backing, embroidery hoops and of course, a clock mechanism. It does prove to be fiddly and the clock mechanism is temperamental. Although, that could be because they had travelled by mail all the way from China! The ladies who made the clocks were delighted with the outcome.
Use round doilies to minimise cutting and bulk.
Make sure backing card is strong but cuttable.
Provide smaller embroidery hoops (but not too small)
This project will defiantly be repeated if I’m lucky enough to be asked onto another cruise!
When we were on our recent cruise around Scotland, one of the projects that we made was a clock. We used vintage textiles including tray cloths and doilies. The results were amazingly good and everyone who made one was delighted with the results.
As always there were lessons to be learnt.
1) The wooden embroidery hoops, used as a frame, take up a LOT of space in a suitcase!
2) Do not squash your finished clock into a suitcase as this stops the hands turning!
3) Use vintage doilies for the clock face not tray cloths. This way you don’t need to cut the fabric to fit and you get a better result.
Watch this space for more cruise craftiness.
Another project “in the bag” for when we go on our crafty cruise in January. K and I are working hard at putting the ideas, examples, and textiles together. We aim for all this to be done prior to Christmas so that we can sit back and relax. The preparation is hampered by the fact that we both have other cruises booked with our husbands in December. How lucky are we?
The latest project is a cover for coat hangers using upcycled vintage textiles. Many of these vintage cloths have beautiful embroidery and have lace on them. Many are damaged with wear and tear so this is a good way to re purpose these lovely old textiles. The project is worked using hand stitching, lots of imagination and is great fun. Hopefully this project will appeal to people who can sew and people who can’t as part of the delight of demonstrating these items is helping them to finish an item. And enjoy the result.
Each coat hanger cover includes a pocket in which I have put a perfumed piece of linen or could be used to hide jewellery. Neat!
Just two more projects to go so watch this space……
I am busy preparing for our Village Christmas Fair. I have been pouring candles into vintage China cups to sell. They make great Christmas gifts and usually sell well. I do have plans for other crafty gifts but as ever time is critical, so we will see.
For my candles I use Soy Wax which is much better than paraffin wax. Soy wax burns slowly with a clear flame and no soot. And, importantly they are eco friendly! Today I have made ten candles in cups. They are gently perfumed with lavender. I will, hopefully make another ten later in the week. Maybe, just maybe, I will find time for the other project. But I will let you know!
Well dear friends I am off on another cruise teaching crafts to fellow cruisers. OK I don’t go until January but I am busy preparing.
Quite a lot of work goes into the prep beforehand. This includes working out how many classes will be required, what to make and what we hope will interest any crafters from beginners to experts.
This next cruise I am planning on using some of my mountainous stash of vintage linens to make up cycled/re purposed items. This project sits nicely with my recent spell of clearing out, making space and de cluttering. I really do have an almost limitless stash of vintage linens but can’t bear just to throw it away. This way someone else will take pleasure from some of it and ( hopefully) make something useful and definitely have fun
I have spent the past week thinking about a one day project, what to do and how to do it. The prototype is now done so one project down, quite a few more to go. This project is a hanging heart made from vintage linens. It is gently perfumed with Lavender and embellished with lace, buttons and ribbons. It is aimed at taking one hour to make although we will find more time on the day.
The cruise line that we are going on is Fred Olsen and this voyage goes to Norway in early January. Fred Olsen provide wonderful cruises and look after their guest lecturers (aka craft instructors!) very well
I will update you as and when I have sorted more projects so watch this space.
A small number of large vintage cloths
BIG news! Hooray! Holidays!
Yippee! Great excitement! Travel!
New Job! Happy Days! Cruise!
There hasn’t been a lot of time to blog lately because I’ve been so busy! The BIG news is that I am going on a cruise to teach crafts!! Whoo Hooo! My first cruise is in five weeks and I’ve been planning, organising and trialling the various project that I’m going to demonstrate. I will tell you over the next few weeks what these projects are as I now have a programme of events. I have a contract with the cruise company and I have vast excitement! My long term plan is to work my passage all over the World but let’s see how the first cruise goes!
I have finished re lining a small case that I found last summer in a charity shop. It only cost £3 and is very vintage, in great condition and looks lovely with its new flowery lining.In the 60’s we used to call these cases “beauty cases” as they were used to carry all our beauty products ( and I had a lot!) This upcycled case will be used as a carry on case for all my travels of which there may be lots! I HOPE!
On my recent trip on the steam train at Llangollen I couldn’t help but be impressed with their random collection of Vintage Memorabilia. I especially liked the collections of vintage suitcases.
There were lots of vintage signs.
I saw highly collectable “posters”( I can’t wait to visit Cornwall again!) Finally, I just had to add this one, cheekily displayed by the gents loo!