I know that the moment I mention what a beautiful day it is I will be startled by a large thunder-clap announcing the re-opening of the Heavens and that, come 5.30pm, I will be stuck in a mile long queue of traffic, wipers hurling themselves backwards and forwards across my windscreen and cursing to myself that nobody is prepared to venture over 12 and a half miles-per-hour in the rain. It’s always the same way; let’s not pretend that it isn’t. Earlier in the week I tentatively hung my washing out on the line before going into work. All day I looked forward to taking that washing back in, crisp and fresh from the first warm day of spring and I very nearly got my wish until Mother Nature, the teasing, artful, pi**-taker that she is, decided that it would be amusing to unleash a small, short shower at 5pm. Back to the tumble dryer….
AND YET, I’ll take my chances! Just look at the sunshine that we’ve got today! Even I, the perennially miserable, cannot help but feel elated when the sun shines, the air clears and all the myriad colours of the world that surround us become thickly vibrant and saturated. I don’t like the summer - the heat makes me feel ill. I don’t enjoy sitting on a beach all day and the whole concept of a BBQ is lost on me (who wants to carry the entire contents of their kitchen outside, just to have to cart the whole load back inside a few hours later?! Why not just put your kitchen-cooked meal on a tray and eat al-fresco?), but these early days of renewed warmth and growth do make me grin with pleasure. No longer do I rush home in the evening to shut the world behind thick curtains but, instead, I find myself standing at the back door, taking deep, sweet gulpfuls of air and sniffing at the breeze like some flashback of a primordial version of myself. Like a lizard lazing on the surface of a rock, this time of year heats my blood, re-animates me, reminds me that I am alive.
Suddenly, it seems, optimism is not beyond me…..
You’ll remember that earlier in the week I was working on my new ‘lunch-bag’ from Sew Hip magazine. Well, I’m pleased to say that it’s finished and being used! Admittedly, there was not much more to do, simply attach the lining to the inside of the outer bag. Mind you, easy as that may sound it came with a whole set of problems. Funnily enough, these only seem to arise when I DON’T follow instructions! The pattern called for two coordinating prints in lightweight cotton, but I, in my wisdom, decided that I was going to use some faux suede for the lining that I’d rescued from the bin after shortening a pair of curtains for my sister. For some reason, my machine was really unhappy about sewing together the two different fabric weights, though perhaps it was due to the nap of the suede resisting the tug of the feed-dogs as I stitched? Nonetheless, completed it has been! I didn’t have any poppers as were suggested, so I made use of the one-step buttonhole function on my sewing machine (still can’t get over how CLEVER that is!) and added a glorious vintage button! Here it is:
I have to say, I would recommend this pattern to a beginner sewer like me. I don’t like making things merely for the sake of it, but this project was simple, stylish and, above all, useful! My banana and ‘Shape’ yoghurt (mmmmmm Danone!) were thrilled to be taken to work in this gorgeous Amy Butler mean machine!
Now what?! Well…..this leads me to my next subject. I hinted briefly last time that the next post would cover temptations and confessions. In all honesty, they are really one and the same. After all, giving into temptation is usually what one needs to make a confession for!
I particularly like the saying ‘The Devil Makes Work For Idle Hands’ these days, as I am sure that is what leads me to spend so much time crafting. I am possessed. That’s my excuse and I’m sticking to it! And it’s for this reason that I have been overwhelmed by, enraptured with, transfixed upon yet another crafty pursuit.
Never before had I thought twice about this art form. But now I am desperate to give it a go! I don’t know what happened, what changed, what magic was cast upon my poor, weak soul, but I have been inspired! It goes without saying, of course, that this new aspect to my creative life necessitated some considerable shopping. This is where the confession comes in. I cannot…hear me CANNOT (are we really friends? Truly? Well, don’t tell Hubby…….. Ok…so Will Not) stop buying fabric….or books….or equipment….. More on this later – I’ll show you all of my gorgeous new things when they finally arrive (the only downside to internet shopping!). My intention is to begin the ‘Mod Sampler’ quilt from Oh Fransson as I am hoping that, having been designed as a ‘quilt-a-long’, the instructions will be simple to follow.
On the subject of quilting I have some more exciting news! My friend Zola and I are to attend the Quilt exhibition at the Victoria and Albert Musuem this Sunday! Ha ha! How exciting! I daresay we’ll stop somewhere fabulous and retro for afternoon tea and a mahoooosive slice of cake afterwards. Provided that I am allowed to take some nice pictures, I promise you all a good, long blog post next week for those that are unable to attend themselves (the exhibition that is, not afternoon tea!!!)
Already the clouds are beginning to build as my finger hovers over the ‘publish post’ button……….
Dorset Summer 2017
17 hours ago