Saturday, December 1, 2007

Crafty feelings creeping back!!

I think I hit the wall yesterday - or at least the craft version of it!! Running? Me? Are you mad?

Hands up if one item you have tried to make has filled your head with so much mush that you can't seem to get past it. Has it made you feel so uninspired that you can't even think about making anything else?

Oooh, that's quite a few of you. Not just me then.

I was feeling like that about the cushions I'm making. I was just not at all happy with how they were turning out. This, in turn, seemed to stop me wanting to do any of my other projects.

As planned, I had an evening off. Well, sort of off.

I made three of these scarves to give to my nieces at Christmas. They are made from super chunky yarn and each took less than 1/2 hour. Martha suggests using twelve strands of yarn divided into threes. The middle one is as per the pattern and looks a bit skinny to me. The others have sixteen strands divided into fours. I'd like to try with more strands and mixed yarns.

They do look nice on though and are plenty warm enough.

I got some more scarf inspiration today. Whilst waiting for Minx at her choir rehearsal I noticed a lovely lovely lovely scarf worn by one of the teachers. Even simpler than the Martha scarves.
Basically it was a big chunky plait made from lots of different yarns in shades of blues and pinks. It included superchunky, ribbon yarns, fluffy yarns etc.
I imagine you would make it something like this:
1. Get together a big wodge of varied yarns at least 1.5 times longer than desired finished length.
2. Using a separate piece of superchunky yarn tie the yarns together 6 inches from one end.
3. Get a willing victim volunteer to hold that end.
4. Divide wodge of yarn into three equal wodges.
5. Plait to last 6 inches or required length - don't think I'd plait it too tight.
6. Tie another piece of superchunky yarn around end leaving a 6 inch fringe.
I bet it cost her at least £15 from M&S - I reckon I could make it for nothing using all my leftover stashy bits :)
I'll try to make one in the next few days and will take step by step photos to post. Just in case my detailed instructions were not clear ;)

Today has been a whirl of decluttering, vacuuming and Christmassyfying the house. My real imaginary friend Mrs Locket with the lovely new hairdo was very organised and sent me this - my very own beautiful advent calendar card that absolutely no-one else is allowed to open at all at all.

The beasties have got this fella to mug for chocolate every morning. See, I could have been more PC and put something educational/ inspirational/ healthy in each little pocket.
The truth? DH found a monster tin of Quality Street that he'd hidden under the bed last Christmas to avoid pigging out on yet more chocolate. They'd been there nearly a year and had a use by date of 1st December 2007 - obviously I didn't realise they were there!!!!! As we were chomping our way through them I suggested using them in Rudolph's pockets as a budget-conscious alternative to me buying choccies 'specially.
Fool!! DH thought it was a great idea and set to, filling Rudolph's greedy fat pockets straight away.
Had it been wine I would never have made such a foolish error.

One thing I particularly love about getting the Christmas boxes down is finding all those old treasures. We've opted for our little three foot artificial tree this year as we will be away for a good chunk of the Christmas holiday. I would have had a real one regardless but DH played the logic card and won!
If allowed to I would go for good taste and coordination. However, the kids prefer to go for the Danny la Rue Santa's with their gorgeous blue eyeshadow and sparkly Santasuits :)

Just look at Minxmeister's boot'ful Fairy lights that Grandma treated her to a couple of years ago:

This is my favourite - tasteful sparkly twinkly thing:

One of these is almost compulsory:

Now, enough of that festive gubbins. Back to far more pressing matters.
Those darn cushions.
Hate the faces.
What to do?
I know.
Wake up 2 hours earlier than strictly necessary and have a 'Eureka moment'!!!!
Freezer paper stencilling.
That's it.
That's what will make everything right with the world.
So be it.
One FP monkee:

Ask DH 'Shall I do him pink or dark purple?'
DH duly replies ' Monkeys are brown so why not do it brown'
Result - one brown monkey:

I didn't post the devil cat yesterday because it disturbs me so much:

Half an hour in the car with a sketch pad whilst Minxie danced to Rudolph the red Nosed Rheindeer at her 'Modern Dance' class started me on the track to a less satanic looking feline:
Her name is Chloe and she's a very rare pedigree Pink Seal Point Siamese - ish. I may stitch her a pretty collar.

I plan to back the stencilled fabric with a piece of white cotton and then applique these onto the cushions. I may even get to finish them on Monday!!!
Tomorrow, I must must must get the littlies to help me make a trillion Christmas cards and I have a need to be baking mince pies. I fully intend to satisfy this need as early as is decent on a Sunday morning!!
There's also a small matter of an ornament for the school tree to be addressed.
How about this to finish off. Come on you bloggers - it's Chriiiiiiiiiiiiistmaaaaaaas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Lucy Locket-Pocket said...

You totally mad woman!

I quite like the devil-cat.

New stencils very very clever - hope you will show your real-imaginary friend how to do those!

Good music ('specially without sound!)

Nice scarves.

Can't remember what else you blogged about but I'm sure that was good too!

LL x

Our Prim Nest said...

You make wonderful things. I am so glad I found your blog. Have a great day!

Monkee Maker said...

Wow - so much blogging goodness! I'm loving the advent calendar that Mrs Locket sent you .... did she send a bar of chocolate with it so you wouldn't feel left out when others were chomping Quality Streets?

The cushions look fab - but then I thought they did before.

And I think I've seen those chunky scarves you speak of .... just can't remember where .... but let's put it this way - it would have either been Peacocks or Primark if I was debating buying one ;)

the vicious chicken said...

Gosh - so many lovely things in one post that I don't really know where to start! Firstly: you made three scarves in one evening, and that's your EVENING OFF?? You are some kind of super-woman! :o)

Also, I like the cushions, and the pretty advent calendar, and the fairy lights - especially the monkey ones :o)

And finally, just to say thanks for all your lovely comments you've left on my blog over the past few days, which have cheered me up (and I laughed out loud at the thought of Hairy Lee covered in antibac gel!)

Patti said...

Wow. How busy have you been? Love everything. The monkey cushion is brill. I would comment on everything but I don't have enough adjectives to go round. I'm exhausted just reading about all you have been up to.

Wow - craft envy here.(and just HOW do you keep a tin of chocs hidden for a year? Not possible)

Gina said...

You've exhausted me just reading your blog today Lesley!!
Lovely cushions, lovely scarves, lovely Christmas stuff.... fab song!

Leigh said...

Okay Lesley, I have been whining all day about time! I come to your site and feel ashamed! How do you do it?!? Everything is just too gorgeous! Your Advent gift is fabulous also!

Jo said...

I bought myself one of those advent cards the other week when I bought one to send to my 100thpost winner - can I find it? No, I put it somewhere safe where little fingers wouldn't find it, goodness knows where!
Love the monkey stencil, very cute.
French Knots

Bethany Hissong said...

I just can't keep up with you! I am just starting my Christmas gifts...the master procrastinator that I am. And my cards...eeek. I will finish them, just sometime soon. I think we need a few more bottles of wine around here to bring out the jolly Christmas attitudes!! Come share a glass or two with me!!!