Tuesday, 30 January 2018

PJ's, gowns and flowboarding

My goodness how the time is flying by and we are nearly at the end of January and I feel that I have done  nothing except make pyjamas and hospital gowns for Pyjama Fairies!  In my December blog (I know only one blog in a month) I mentioned the 40 metres of fabric I had received from the Thomas Cook Children's Charity that I had washed and ironed and it was ready for use.  Well I have been cutting out and sewing ever since Christmas and have made 17, or is it 18 items with three to be sewn.  It doesn't sound much from 40 metres of fabric but I still have quite a few metres of the plain to use up and this can be put with other fabric that I have.  I prefer making teenage sizes and these use over 2 metres per item, especially the PJs.  From the offcuts I have made age 6 and upwards.  I also have a pile of scraps and I will be making Linus quilts out of these.

All different sizes ready to go
Following on from the last blog, I have taken delivery of a new dishwasher that I love and I have to admit is probably a lot more economical than my old one.  So good not to wash dishes by hand and more hygienic as well. 

My family were very generous over Christmas and the New Year and gave me cash.  So earlier this month I  loaded my bike onto the car and headed for this company who within two hours had converted my bike to electric.

The power assist is in the front wheel with a pannier on the back holding the battery.  I have bought saddle bags because the basket on the front has been taken off to allow for the LED screen.  I have 5 assist speeds according to the steepness of the hill when I go up but if I want to start quickly I have a boost button.  The boost should not be used too often as it drains the battery, but such fun to use!!  The only minus is that the bike is now very heavy (even without the battery) and I cannot lift it onto the bike carrier on my own now.  This means a different sort of carrier or a small hoist!   When I went cycling Sunday I was trying to run the battery down before it's first charge, so I used the boost button to go along my road.  I don't know what the motorists thought as this mad flying Granny shot past them at great speed!!

My youngest granddaughter, now aged 7, had her birthday earlier this month and I had made her a sundress like the others except this fabric was all hearts

Worked in 'Counter change' this form of smocking is so easy to do and this pattern is so simple - chest measurement and height is all that is needed and then a pattern that can be smocked.  This one had rows of hearts with an even distance between them so was easy to work in different coloured rows.

Grandson, my eldest grandchild aged 12, also had his birthday as well and for a treat he went 'Flowboarding' and had a brilliant time

I was given a pack of wool to make Attic24's Woodland blanket and have made about 10" of it so plenty still to do.  I am enjoying this and the colours are wonderful.  My Tilda Bunny is nearly finished but I am not showing anymore until it is which should be in the next blog post.

As I mentioned in the last post we had a Christmas challenge of a tea towel, to turn into anything we want.  My ideas are now being worked but I will write a full blog with lots of photos but not until April when it must be completed.  It is a steep learning curve as I am using techniques that are new to me and the next stage is vey nerve wracking!!  I hope it works or there will be one useless tea towel!

Wednesday, 3 January 2018

Happy New Year!!

I hope that all of you had a happy and peaceful Christmas.

Mine has been busy and eventful and started on the Wednesday before the holiday.  I bought my dishwasher in 1995 for my late husband's 65th birthday as he was having a party and I didn't want to wash all the dishes.  It has been feeling its age lately and I knew it was on its last legs so I decided to give it a clean through with very little crockery.  I went upstairs to my workroom and luckily didn't turn on the radio because I suddenly heard a bang, came downstairs and when I opened it smoke came out.  I ran next door to my neighbour and he could see flames inside it, so I called the Fire Brigade who came within 5 minutes.   Huge men in dirty boots, poured into my small house and with giant pliers cut the waste pipe and electric cable (that I had already disconnected) and carried it out into the front garden.  The water that had been sloshing about in the bottom (it hadn't drained at all) was now on the kitchen floor and it took me an hour to mop up and clean up after they had eventually gone, but I realise I was very lucky as it could have been worse.

The best thing was that when I came back from shopping the next day my old dishwasher had disappeared from my front garden, so maybe the scrap metal man had gone past.

Friday following this I went to Kent to stay with my eldest son and family, for Christmas and we were joined by No 2 son and family the next day and so the holiday had started.  We went to the beach on Christmas Eve and No 2 son did a 10K run -
Notice the kite surfers in the background!!
 the children built sandcastles

I went for a walk with my daughters in law and we watched horses being exercised.

Christmas Day passed in a blur of church, food, presents and more food, followed by games  and all too soon Boxing Day came round with No 2 son, wife and children having to leave to see in-laws.   I stayed on and we went to see the hunt assembling near a local pub ready to ride out, but the town was packed with people and cars and prevented any decent photos and then my camera battery ran out!!  This is a very popular annual event with huge crowds.
The inconsiderate girl kept getting in the picture!!

 All my Christmas presents this year for the females were my own handiwork.  Remember the hexi bag that I blogged about here, well I made one each for my daughters in law and filled them with little goodies.

I love these Japanese 'Cranes'; aren't they beautiful and elegant.

Way back and I don't know when, I made a craft carry caddy for myself and that gave me the idea to make one each for the grandchildren and put a few little things in them.
Four together
Grandson's Star Wars fabric

Clockwise from left: Cinderella, Tinkerbell and Frozen fabric
I know that these are being used already to keep things tidy.

Ellie was eight just before Christmas and I decided to make her one of the counter change smocked sun dresses with a little glittery T-shirt underneath.  I love these little dresses as all you need are the chest measurement and the height.
Little hearts and I loved this fabric as soon as I saw it
Oh, we also received our Christmas Challenge from Higham Piecemakers - a tea towel!  Based on the Great British Sewing Bee we actually have until April to turn it in to something; though my mind was blank for a few days, ideas are popping up and I am beginning to get quite excited about it.  Hope I can execute what I want to do.

Anyway I must get on as so much to do and not enough time to do it!! Is this going to be my 2018??