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Saturday, March 31, 2007

Because I can

The result of some idle playing with photo software on a quiet Saturday afternoon. The top left picture in the grid is the real picture (they are on sale in my Etsy shop) but I had a bit of fun fiddling around.
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Tuesday, March 27, 2007

New Bag

I've just put this bag in my Etsy shop (see sidebar). Personally I think I was quite clever with this one! It's the legs of a pair of Wombat's cargo pants that he won't wear (sensory issues - despite the fabric having a lovely washed out feeling!) that I chopped off and turned into a two sectioned shoulder bag. And retained the cargo pockets on the outside, complete with stud fastenings, which are large enough to put things in. Sewing through so many layers of fabric was a minor challenge - I only broke one needle (and swore A LOT) and then sewed very slowly over the offending areas. Baby Bear wants it, so I hope that some other fashionable young thing with disposable income takes a fancy to it!

I'm currently making a more conventional little jeans bag out of the bum part of the pants. I;m going to embellish the front of it with a few doo-dads, just for fun.

Now for the grumpy of Glen Waverley bit - I was filling in the envelope for Wombat's school photos yesterday (bearing in mind that he is at a primary school, kids ranging in age from five to twelve). There was an option on the envelope to pay to HAVE THE PHOTOS RETOUCHED. For primary school kids! What sort of message are we sending to kids, for @#$%^&* sake! A school full of healthy, gorgeous, normal children (of all colours of the rainbow) and they are being sent this message! I shall be passing word along to the principal that I think this is grossly inappropriate. (Which is easy to do, being married tot he School Council President and actually being quite friendly with the principal!)
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Monday, March 19, 2007

Two Pentagons with Nipples

These are the first two pentagons for the Norah Gaughan thingy. I believe that agressive blocking with ultimately remove the nipples but I think it looks priceless like this, like something a cave woman would wear on a cold day. The colour is pretty accurate (for once!), dark grey Bendigo wool with a pale blue fleck in it. I am enjoying knitting this.

However I now think I need to go and tatt an antimaccassar or something suitable nineteenth century. My household seems to have slipped through a timewarp. I just receivedc an overdue notice for the gas bill, which I was furious aboutb ecause I had actually paid it a day before its due date. So I rang up to complain. And because the gass account (andm ost of our accounts, come to think of it) are only in George's name, because he arranged them all while I was packing boxes and wrangling children, the little jobsworth at the other end of the phone was not authorised to speak to me on the issue. George happened to be working at home this morning so I handed the call over to him and this little #%&! ASKED HIM PERMISSION to put my name on the account too. OK, he earns the money, but I have paid all the bills and done all the banking for about three years now and I don;t think George would recognise the gas bill if he fell over it. I told the young man that now I knew why I did all my transactions electronically, so I didn't have to speak to people like him.


Off to knit more pentagons and try to soothe myself a little!
EDITED ON MARCH 27TH - I can't believe it, it just happened again! I got an overdue notice from Telstra for a bill that I had PAID ON THE DUE DATE and yet again they refuse to speak to me about it at all - and this time G is interstate so I can't even get him to talk to them about it so I can't even find out why I get an invoice dated eight days after I paid the bill saying that I haven't paid it. I'm so angry that I have steam coming out of my ears!!!
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Sunday, March 18, 2007

Deadeye Constance

I've also opened an Etsy shop called Deadeye Constance, which is the registered business name I have decided to use for my textile art. Yes, I have an ABN and paid for business registration and everything!! Canyou tell I;ve just finished studying Arts Business Practices 1? Now all I need to do is sell something - anything? I know a lot of people do well on Etsy but I think you have to build up a following there. I am using it as a testing ground for things before I make lots of them. There will be bags up there soon.
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Grand Opening!!!

I've just opened a Cafe Press Store! Roll up, Roll up, Ra Ra Ra! Seriously folks, I;m going to use it to showcase some of my textile art images in ways other than the actual textile art itself. I've gone for the free type of shop first to see if anything sells, and if it does I might even expand - today Harry the bead embroidered thing (who is my new logo and I will never ever sell him, I just love him too much!) - tomorrow the world. (sorry, puts down white Persian cat).

Saturday, March 17, 2007

And the other half

OK, it's only just occurred to me that Picasa only uploads four pictures at a time no matter how many you marked!!! I couldn;t not post this other four, the toilet in the garden is just priceless!
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Chris and Mary-Lou Pittard, Potters

Yesterday we also visited Wendy's next door neighbours, Chris and Mary-Lou Pittard, who are potters. I took quite a few pictures of their lucious pottery, as you can see!
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Wendy Hicks, Textile Artist

Wendy Hicks has been teaching us Arts Business Practices at TAFE for the last few weeks, and has done her utmost of make a boring subject interesting and relevant. She took us on a tour of her gallery and studio yesterday in Eltham and I took these pictures of some of her gorgeous machine embroidered textile works. If you are ever around Eltham please pop in and visit her gallery and see if you can get away without spending money! (I actually didn't spend money, but I am hanging on to my cash for the Stitches and Craft Fair this morning!)
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Thursday, March 15, 2007

Preppy Jacket

This is, I think, called the Preppy Jacket, from Debbie Stoller's The Happy Hooker. I say I think, because the book and the jacket met a nasty accident recently. Baby Bear spilt a huge glass of milk while watching the little TV I usually sit and knit in front of. The milk went right through the combined VCR/DVD which was one month out of warranty, all over the crocheted back and fronts, and the 200g ball of Bendigo wool I was using, and the book. The VCR had to be replaced (because she didn't tell me what had happened, cleaned up cosmetically, but left it to sit in a puddle of milk underneath while I, assuming an electrical problem, turned it on and off several times until I fried the circuit board - or possibly poached it). The book had to be thrown out, except for the two pages I still needed, which I tore out and threw away as soon as I had finished with them. The 200g ball had to be skeined, washed and reballed, and the crocheted bits needed washing and blocking. However it is now finished, it doesn't smell of milk after two washes (the second to block it properly yesterday), and she replaced the VCR out of her pocket money. I didn;t make her replace the book, (though I did dock her the $30) because I didn't actually like it very much.

I am pleased with the jacket. I deliberately made it slightly too small, as I am shrinking out of clothes at an alarming rate at the moment and the last two cardigan I knitted (see December posts, I think) are already quite generous on me (fortunately they are appropriate for looking generous). So I can;t quite do it up gracefully without it straining across the bust at the moment, but then I rarely do up jackets or cardigans anyway so I might not bother even when I have lost some more weight.

I have trouble getting yarn colours to come out properly. Even with fiddling around, neither of those colours are quite right. It is a tweed yarn of green, blue and red mixed together but overall looks green, unlike the photos which make it look more blue.
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Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Vogue Knitting Grump

I like to boast that I can knit anything. Especially if it is written down in black and white AND charted. What's not to understand? Norah flippin' Gaughan's cabled capelet THING in Vogue Knitting Winter 2006/2007, that's what. I've knitted two of her other patterns before and they have turned out perfectly and I love her stuff. But for the life of me I cannot work out how to knit 34 stitches of the chart, five times, when there are 32 stitches in the chart! If I just knit an extra two from the chart each time there will be too many decreases (there are decreases at each end of the chart). Maybe I should just knit the size Large instead of X Large, that only needs 32 stitches, but I;m not sure that XLarge is going to quite fit as it is. The only thing I can think of is to add two extra knit stitches around the cable where they won't look stupid. But frankly, if I have gone to the trouble of buying a knitting publication, I don't want to have to strain an already strained brain by working this out for myself. And no there aren't any coorrections posted. There is a so-called tutorial that skips right over the actual knitting and just shows the making up, which is bleeding obvious from the written instruction.

Rant over. In foul mood because of bad night's sleep - certain little cherubs thought it would be funny to turn up the thermostat on my water bed and I spent the night poaching - and the fact that it is Wombat's Twlight Sports tonight, an occasion I loathe with a passion. It was so much easier when he was totally feral and had no social skills whatsoever and just refused to attend things like that. After all the work and therapy we have thrown at him he now desperately wants to go, but it always ends in tears (usually mine).

Edited to add - well, when I sat down, took a deep breathe and started to count stitches, it became apparent that the so-labelled 32 stitch graph actually was 34 stitches, as two of them were decreases on the first row, so all of that ranting could have been saved! I've knitted three rows of the first pentagon and it's easy as, now I;ve got that worked out!

Tomorrow, hopefully, a picture of an FO which is drying off at the moment and needs buttons sewn on.

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Sirius the Ridiculous

This is what happens when your camera mad daughter shoves your camera right in the face of your dog. A very silly picture indeed!
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Wednesday, March 07, 2007

More Andy Warhol - creepy

Baby Bear took my photo of the girl in the smocked dress and turned it into this. I think Andy Warhol would have approved - I think it is a really creepy picture compared with the original. The girl has talent, I encourage it! But I;m surprised I haven't had nightmares about this one. (The last nightmare I had was about being held hostage by Jamie Oliver - believe me, it wasn't pretty!)

Edited to add - see comment - this is exactly the same photo as the one I took in the previous post, the dark room effect was done by my daughter with photo manipulation software as were the different colours.

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The 1940's - War and Austerity

More lovely costumes from the Costume Gallery in Bulleen. This was the 1940's room. For all the talk of war and austerity these clothes were, mostly, quite obviously good ones. The women's dresses are either of wool or silk crepe, the little girls' dresses of cotton, and the baby is in a smocked Viyella gown. It amused me that the blue smocked dress was almost identical to ones I made Baby Bear when she was that age - the only real difference being that I piped my collars and cuffs with the dress fabric, and these are edged with buttonhole stitch in red thread. The baby is wrapped in a mchine knitted shawl that is identical to some I have seen George's aunt knit on her machine (she was a leading light in the Machine Knitters' Guild for many, many years, though since having a stroke cannot manage the machine any more).
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Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Edwardian Blouses

From a trip to a Costume Gallery in Bulleen, crammed full of wonderful things. I have always loved these ornate Edwardian blouses (though I am sure they were intensely hot and uncomfortable and restricting).
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Sunday, March 04, 2007

Baby Bears' Homage to Andy Warhol

Even if she had to be reminded who Andy Warhol is, I think this photo collage shows the payoff of taking babies to see art exhibitions. This also reminds me of that dreadful Mexican film director who did those films about coffins and things (can't sit through one of his films) and Bunel (can't do a squiggle thing when having drunk a bottle of cheap white wine with dinner). My children are actually much more beautiful and much less scary than this - well, most of the time.
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Saturday Sky

Actually the sunset is Friday sky but it's too pretty to be left out. That one was taken by Baby Bear last night on the roof (which is flat and fairly safe). The others I took on Saturday between 9am and 12pm as the weather slowly moved through. Baby Bear has been taking some stunning photos recently which I may feature because she is 100% better than me and shows so much talent in this area that I am blown away by some of her stuff. Being 13 though, she is brilliant but doesn;t quire understand the accolades - despite being told she is doing collages akin to Andy Warhols', she has to be reminded that she saw Andy Warhols at the Tate Gallery and other galleries when she was in nappies, and just who she is, even is she is doing work worthy of him! One of her collages to follow. i think she is more talented than me. I don;t know whether to be proud or disillusioned. On the whole I think PROUD!!!

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