Tuesday, 25 October 2016

Friends,fabric and fun

The last two weeks I have had such joy getting back into my creative crafts and catching up with friends.coffee and craft commenced after some months break. Linda made some lovely book covers and Kerry was completing a crochet gift.
I was working on a patchwork hanging under the title of Winter Wonderland for the guild. No pictures yet as I will blog about it at a later date.lots of embroidery, applique and imagination thrown in. My Dollshouse miniature hobby has been in the back burner for some time but two of my houses went in an exhibition on their own this weekend past to raise funds for the RNLI and I believe the DAME group raised over £1300.
Both the storybook cottage and the crooked house I built under the tuition of Rik Pierce, an incredible tutor

It was also lovely to get together with some miniature friends for an evening out.
One of the reasons I didn't make it to the Dollshouse exhibition was that I was oil painting all day with Julie Douglas on the Saturday. I have been wanting to paint animals for some time but not quite ready yet to paint Smudge so did a pig.
This little one was my colleague's pig . I must ask her its name.

I was amazed at how much I got done in a day especially since it's months since I had a brush in my hand. Many more hours to go though.

My precept Bible study starts back this week too and we are looking at Philippians. Throughout this study we are reminded to rejoice in all circumstances and this is something that I have been reminding myself especially after such a difficult summer dealing with stress and anxiety. I am thankful for the support of my friends but firstly I thank God for all he has done for me. He brings a joy that can be found no other way.


Wednesday, 12 October 2016

Tuffet Day

I was invited to a Tuffet day and had to stop and think what a tuffet was. I remembered Little Miss Muffett sat on her tuffet eating her curds and whey but this still didn't help me visualise what it was. Why did I never query what she sat on before? A few photographs later I decided I would love to make a tuffet but the kits online were a bit expensive.
It was quite a day with our own tea ladies in hand, Amy in the morning and Fiona in the afternoon. The ladies had sourced supplies separately which reduced the cost a lot.




We had set our expectations for the day much too high as many of us only got a few segments completed. I had bought my little bun feet on eBay and stained and waxed them in advance as if I thought they would be attached on the first day.
I decided to transfer my paper pattern onto vilene which had its pros and cons.it was easier to sew on but had I to do it again I would have chosen a non adhesive vilene as I was unable to iron open each section. However as some commented it gave it a pleated effect which I quite like.
Once the first section of eight strips were complete it was much quicker to complete the other eight. The button was a bit tinny and delicate so I covered the whole thing including the inner part and gathered fabric then I stitched it to the tuffet as if it we a puff not a button.

I took the sharp edge off the foam with an electric carving knife and put some wadding between the fabric cover and foam adhering it together with 505 fabric spray. I had gathered the neck prior to adding the button and using a doll needle pulled the cord all way through the foam to the base and through the centre of the wooden base. 
I then gathered the fabric around the wooden base with embroidery floss.
Below you can see the base with the screws for the feet which are hid above.
Getting back to the reverse I decide to add fabric rather than felt and attach with upholstery tacks. I particularly like the antique ones.
Feet screwed into place by making small slits in the fabric and all ready for Miss Muffett should she appear.

Sunday, 2 October 2016

Starting again

When we have a computer problem and the screen freezes some times we just have to unplug and start again. This can be so true of life as well. I recently experienced a period of sever stress where everything went on hold. To move forward I had to unplug and start again. I started with some exercise for body and mind and being off work gave me lots of time to reflect. One verse that comes to mind "be still and know that I am God" A reminder that we can't keep going and there are times we have to stop and even rewind. I am thankful in life I don't always know what is ahead and its God who has the bigger picture.
During this time I found walking and nature more relaxing than my craft which is usually my means to unwind. I am so thankful for the wonderful creation around me. I am thankful I live close to the sea and a choice of forests where I can go without warning, providing Smudge agrees of course.
It has been lovely to get back to my design and patchwork course. This module involves a lot of play although probably not how my tutor would describe it.


I spent a lot of time in coffee shops which allowed me to gain more pounds than desirable so it's back to home cooking and sensible eating and I feel better already with a little help from pure gym. The patchwork guild has recommenced and as speaker secretary I am planning for 2017-2018 but enjoying this present year and highly recommend you come along even as a visitor at first. Angela Madden was an excellent speaker in October and her patchwork quilts are out of this world for which she has won awards.
The healthcare Christian fellowship has recommenced with the forty minute study looking to the future and it's been very encouraging to have so many new members. We start our new PUP on Philippines in October at number 55 and coffee and craft format is changing to one day a month. This will be restricted to 5 using sewing machines and possibly anoth two non sewers! Snacks will be provided in exchange for a small donation to Kiwoko.