Thursday, 31 July 2014

De-cluttering, Diets and a little bit of Stitching

Well the de-cluttering has been going well lots of 'stuff' cleared out. As I have a few hobbies *cough* I ahem have quite a lot of stash. Actually to be honest a lot more than I realised! I've been busy sorting....oh my! Where to put it all *blush* it's made me realise I have far far too much 'stuff' sadly I am on a diet....a stash diet to be precise I am not going to allow myself to purchase any new kits till I have made a substantial dent in what I already have *sigh*.
I did have some fun moments while clearing out, you know when you discover stuff you forgot you had. For instance my grans, great grans and great aunts doilies..I'd forgotten all about these.
 and some vintage clothing I collected over 20 years ago now...eek!
 What a state it was in all horrible and yellow having been stored in a cardboard box in various attics over the years. After a bit of googling where I discovered cardboard and old textiles don't mix! Oops! have given them all a good wash and look.......not perfect but I am really pleased with how these have turned out.
I think it was the needlework on these pieces that drew me to them in the first place it amazes me with the amount of time theses ladies would have had to spend working how they ever had the time to   make such wonderful items.
I am keeping the family pieces but the vintage stuff I will get rid of probably on ebay, now they look lovely and clean it would be a shame to shove them back into the attic! Let someone else enjoy them.

Needlework wise I have done very little as it has been very hot and sticky here. Living next to a field we have the same problem every year around this time blasted corn lice! Eugh horrible critters they get everywhere behind the picture frames inside the laptop screen they crawl over everything and we
can't sit out in the garden without being covered in the critters and they just make you itch all over. After living here for so long you'd think id be used to them by now lol. Anyone who lives near fields will know what I am talking about...roll on harvest time. Anyway to get back on track we have to keep the windows at the back of the house shut and run fans which means I can't stitch for long as things get blown around lol. Oh well it's not for ever.
I have managed to finish BBD Forget Me Not really love how this has turned out not sure how I will have this framed not that I have a lot of choice my local framer has a very limited selection, oh how I envy others with super duper framers. I have toyed with the idea of ordering frames online but I am afraid I will get the measurements wrong.
I've also started some small cross stitch kits that I bought from Atelier in France. And it's all Annettte of California Stitcher blog fault ;0) she posted gorgeous pictures of the kits and before I knew it I had some on order, go on have a wee nosey, dare you to not be tempted as well *grin*. They are lovely little kits as Annette says and a great price for what you get, the website is all in French but with google translate on hand and my very rudimentary school French it was easy to navigate and place my order. The parcel arrived very quickly and I was delighted with the little kits which are in French but very easy to understand without knowledge of the language.
You are supplied with the linen, hand dyed threads and silk ribbon for finishing. My plan is to turn all these into little lavender sachets to hang in my wardrobe. I've already bought a large bag of lavender.
These are soo pretty and fairly quick to stitch so I am hoping to have them completed fairly quickly corn lice and weather permitting of course!
We have also been celebrating someone's 8th birthday and the birthday boy announced he wanted a creeper cake from Minecraft. Those of you who have children of a similar age will no doubt have heard of Minecraft and will know what I am talking about the rest of you will no doubt be staring at the picture thinking has she flipped? What on earth is that!? Lol I am no domestic goddess but did what any mother and have a bash! 
Turned out not too bad little bit wonky but the birthday boy was thrilled...and it tasted not too bad either!
Thank you for stopping by and I hope your all enjoying the summer.

Wednesday, 16 July 2014

Stitchy progress

It's not all work and no play for this girl *grin* I have some progress pics to share with you, BBD Forget Me Not is nearly finished as you can see just a little to do at the bottom, it kind of got put to one side as I lost one of my skeins of blue thread ( think I left it behind at the swimming pool when taking twin 1 to her swimming lesson)

So while Forget Me Not got put on the back burner I pulled out my kit for the Miniature Needlelace Lavender Hearts by Jenny Adin-Christie, these are soo teeny and cute! Smaller than I expected and took longer to make than I expected too lol but I love them! Jenny's instructions are frankly foolproof she takes you step by step with plenty of pictures you just can't go wrong. I can see me making lots of these in odd moments they are sooo addictive and the smell of the lavender is just...ahhh....gorgeous! I have put mine on my scissors for the moment and can't stop picking them up and smelling them. I love the dotty backs, they are so cheery and make me smile.

Took a little break from making the needlelace hearts as my wonderful hubby treated me to an introduction to stumpwork class at the Wemyss School of Needlework at the end of June to make this...

For completing my first year at college. The class was taken by Helen McCook and she is an amazing teacher with lots of patience and willing to spend time showing us and explaining what we were to do, some of the lady's were quick learners and got on with the task in hand some and here I include myself in this group were not so quick lol and needed a lot of support. Helen was lovely and would come round to those of us needing help individually.
I have not done any form of embroidery since I was very young when my gran taught me but it really never grabbed me and I much preferred doing cross stitch. However I have always admired the old stumpwork pictures that you often see in old stately homes and wondered how they made them so this class really appealed to me. I can honestly say it did not disappoint. I did not get my butterfly finished at class it took me another week or so of on off stitching to complete it but I am kind of proud of it and like to think my gran is looking down and saying ' thank goodness she's finished something!' Well here it is..

The Wemyss School of Needlework is a wonderful place to hold a class, in the classroom itself you are surrounded by wonderful examples of old needlework and the windows let in plenty of light so we didn't really need to use the lamps that were supplied for our use. I was fascinated with the work stands supplied called Lowery Stands they are not the most attractive looking stands but boy were they sturdy and did the I mustn't be tempted I've got a floor stand already and I am meant to be de-cluttering!
The school is also a museum and there were examples of needlework and old photos on all the walls even in the toilet which might explain why some of us seemed to spend an age in their *sheepish grin*
We ate a lovely lunch surrounded by more examples of needlework and kits and threads, sadly I had to rush out the door at the end of the class due to fractious kids and hubby waiting in the car for me so didn't get a chance to have a good look and spend some pennies....hmm perhaps in the light of current goings on in this house that may not be such a bad thing...but I will go back. I would love to do another class it was a wonderful and memorable day. Sadly I can't share any photos of inside the school with you all as we were not allowed to take any I assume because of the old needlework and pictures, I would recommend if you are ever up this way do check out if any classes are on or to even just visit the shop and museum well worth a visit in my humble opinion!

I can now work again on my Forget Me Not sampler as I have ordered the missing thread and ordered some threads and linen to finally make a start on on Black Bird Designs SAL which I signed up for but as yet not started so no excuses now.
Finally we have had a couple of wet days (well it is Scotland) which means cool nights and I have managed to get a little more done on my socks. They are progressing but very slowly, I seem to spend as long un-twisting my needles and yarn as I do knitting! Hmmm maybe I need shorter needles, I certainly need to pay more attention to where the pattern starts on my yarn in future.  No matter these are just for me but I am rapidly coming to the conclusion I am no natural sock knitter *grin*
Thank you for popping by.

The great de-clutter! Part 1

Sorry I have been absent from my blog for this past wee while. I also apologise in advance for the non stitchy content of this post. I've not been particularly busy with stitching and stuff partly because it's the school holidays and the kids are home all day and we are into the third week of the already? The weather has for the most part been fab and sunny so lots of time spent outdoors tidying the garden and reading. And partly because my girls are going to start secondary school after the holidays, can't believe my little girls are going to secondary school? I can still remember them stumbling around taking their first steps for goodness sake!

Anyway they have been grumbling for some time now about wanting their own rooms/space soooo we are clearing out the craft/computer/laundry storage/general dumping ground room. Which means *takes deep breath* The Great De-Clutter, omg the amount of stuff we have literally stuffed into this house has frankly amazed and shocked me. Why throw things away when one day we might need them tic? But seriously the things we have held onto... I wasn't sure where to start but certainly not in the craft/computer/laundry storage/general dumping ground room for sure. 

I need space in the rest of the house to move this stuff into which means clearing out cupboards and attic space ....I've been at this for nearly two weeks now and Iam still not finished! *hangs head in shame* out of our bedroom cupboard alone which is a huge 4 door walk in job we cleared out 11 bin bags, stuff we had held onto from our youth just when did I think that I was ever going to wear the shorts again that I wore when I was in my teens??? My hubby's old lumber jack shirts??..sentimental old fools that we are! All gone now though. Next it was the under stairs cupboard and the hall cupboard both looking so much better now and yet another trip to the charity shop and one to the local recycling centre at least I can no walk into my under stairs cupboard haven't been able to do that in a loooong time. 

Now we move onto the attic space which is very limited as it's really an under the eaves space as we extended our house up into the loft space a good few years ago now...yes I can hear you all 'well she can't have much stored under there then' ...oh how wrong you all are *hangs head in shame* it really is amazing the amount of crap stuff that you can squeeze into these small spaces I really truly was stunned and amazed myself! Although in this instance I have to say hubby's the main culprit as he has a bad habit of stuff it in there and forget about it deal with it later attitude so he had many large boxes to clear out along with just about every gadget we have ever owned box that was stored in there. The cardboard bin is now full to over flowing. 

Around about this time I thought it might be an idea to keep a record for the future of the amount of stuff coming out, you know just so we can remind ourselves how bad we once were should the urge to stuff something else into the back of a cupboard or the attic should ever arise again! So...
And this is just a fraction of what came out of the attic. All in I made two round trips to the local recycling centre.
And this lot cluttering up my sons bedroom...
Will be heading shortly to the charity shop once I get my backside in gear! But first breakfast and a coffee calls..