This is what the garden looked like last week. The white stuff stayed there for a whole week (quite unusual for this area), but last weekend a warm front came in and we had torrential rain, thunder, lightning and hailstones and now it’s all gone. The hens were a bit nonplussed by it all, and refused to leave their run even when I opened the door – normally they are falling over each other to get out! And even when they did emerge, they congregated at the back door as if pleading with me to give them their warm mash and shut them back in again…
This was one night last week when the snow was coming down for the last time.
From last October two of my sons have gone off to university, leaving only one at home and it is very strange and is taking some getting used to. As a result I have been a bit at sea here and feeling rather disorientated. I have been getting a bit fed up of making wall art/generally stuck and have been exploring alternative ways to use my printed fabric. Though maybe I’ll just keep it as art cloth… dilemmas, dilemmas…. I have also been getting into upcycling and refashioning clothes. I made this top using one of Marcy Tilton’s Vogue patterns. Every now and again I buy a sale ‘goody bag’ from People Tree, who sell fairtrade fashion, but sometimes the clothes they send just aren’t me at all. I made this one from a couple of ra-ra style skirts in tshirt material plus an old tie dyed tshirt that the boys had outgrown. The colours are not quite true but you get the general idea! I still have to finish the arms and face the neckline but I quite like the result.
I also bought this gorgeous Harris Tweed men’s jacket on Ebay and am busy restyling it, putting more darts in to convert it into a woman’s jacket. I plan to put new buttons on and add a few more decorative features, not sure yet exactly what. The dressmaker’s dummy, by the way, was another recent Ebay acquisition which is becoming very useful!
These are the clothes racks full of printed and dyed fabric that I have accumulated. I think I may reopen my Etsy shop and put some of it for sale there – what do you think? I’m not sure whether to experiment with turning it into clothes or sell it as art cloth.
Another thing I did at the beginning of December was to sign up for a Craftsy class called The Couture Dress with Susan Khalje. So far I’ve made a muslin, attempted to fit it on myself (!), cut out the silk organza interlining and the actual fabric which is tartan Viyella fabric that I bought years ago before the UK textile industry mostly got outsourced to China. This is the result so far! I’ve made it very difficult for myself by cutting lots of pieces on the bias so I am unsure how it is going to turn out, but I’m learning lots of useful stuff on the way, such as how to trace patterns. I doubt if I will ever make another couture dress as it is too slow and fiddly for me (and accuracy doesn’t seem to be within my capabilities which is why I don’t do traditional patchwork and quilting!!). But it is a useful learning experience…
And finally, here are a few handmade books I made recently using the instructions from Sue Bleiweiss’ online class that I took a few years ago…. Hard to believe that those covers started out as brown paper, isn’t it? It was an opportunity to use up some of the gorgeous raku buttons I have bought from various Etsy people….