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Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Shh... Sewing!

I haven't done any dressmaking for a LONG time.  I have been trying to screw up the courage to start again for ages.  I thought buying my new Janome machine last year would do it.  Well, I did use it a bit, for textile art bits and pieces, but I could never get comfortable at the table it was on.  So George bought me a dewing table that's the right height and my back no longer hurts when I sew.

That was only a month ago so I haven't waited TOO long, considering how long I've been out of the game.  But really, the only thing that has pushed me into it at long last is the fact that I need a nice dress for Saturday (yes, that's the Saturday in three days time) and I can't wear any of the nice ones I already have because they are for warmer weather and it is going to be FREEZING.  (Late September in Melbourne can be anything, weatherwise, so I could well have got away with a sleeveless dress!)

I steeled myself to cut out the pattern.  To alter the bodice slightly.  Yesterday, to cut everything out.  Today, sewing commences.  Am I scared?  YOU BET!!!  But here goes!!

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Ladies Only?

In the centre of Melbourne lies a large Anglican cathedral. There are benches set in the grounds, right by the bustling street. A few weeks ago I noticed this sign set into the pavement in front of one of the seats.
Presumably it dates from a time when Ladies might need some respite and a sit down, but obviously couldn't share a public bench with a man.

It was a little reminder of a different age, while a very 21st century crowd raced past- including me with my modern smart phone on which I took the photo, used software to 'antique' it, and I am even writing this post on the phone - all while thinking of crinolines.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

One Skein Wonder

A few months ago I had reason to want to create a gift for someone I have never met in person, but know online, who had suffered a tremendous loss in her life.  I decided to knit her a small shoulder shawl using a merino/possum wool sock yarn that I had in my stash, which was pretty colours and soft and snuggly.

It's a very easy pattern, but annoyingly I can't find it now.  It ought to be on Ravelry but I can't find it.  It took 100g of the sock wool, anyway.

As the intended recipient is also a mixed media artist I included two (non-matching) arms from discarded acupuncture baby dolls, tied together with a strip of sari silk.

Apparently it went down well and the waitress in the restaurant who witnessed the opening of the parcel with the dead baby arms was horrified!

There's quite a lot you can do with 100g of sock wool.

Edited to add : Thanks, Jill, you were quite right, it is the Bit of a Frill pattern, many thanks!

Monday, September 03, 2012

A new project?

This doesn't look very exciting, but it could be. These are a collection of handwritten recipe books, plus some torn from newspapers, mostly from my mother in law's mother, some from my MiL herself. The earliest goes back to 1913.

I have started slowly going through them and identifying recipes to try out. I find them fascinating from a social history point of view as they show a different way of life going back a century.

There is a lot of duplication, of course, and stuff that doesn't suit most modern tastes, plus recipes that one or the other of our immediate family members would not, or could not, eat. But I thought it would be fun and instructive to work through some of them, test cook them and turn them into modern day recipes.

Progress reports will be posted here. I am still in the very early stages of picking out potential recipes so there won't be photos for a while though.