Thursday, 28 June 2012

What were we making?

Any guesses? We've not made this before, and it was easy. Not my favourite drink though, but was fun to collect and do.

Another clue...

Saturday, 23 June 2012

A soggy but inspiring day out

I joined my youngest's school trip this week - they were going to the Life of Christ performance, which takes place each year deep in Surrey. It's a wonderful setting, and the scenes are set in steep fields, which form a natural stage - you walk to each Act. We saw the first three, and then the heavens opened, but it was amazing. They had a flock of sheep and working sheepdog in the first scene.

The costumes were beautifully colourful against the greenery. This is the John the Baptist scene:

And the last supper, shortly after which we had to leave, and it was raining too heavily and the ground was becoming dangerously slippery - several of the actors slipped.

One day I'll go back and watch the whole performance - it takes a day.

I had a lovely surprise this week, when this package arrived:

I won a giveaway from Maria's blog, here. I need to take a photograph, but it is such a lovely giveway to have won, so thank you!

Saturday, 9 June 2012

How to make fabric puffs / fabric yo-yos tutorial

I've made a few fabric yo-yos for my lovely blogging friend, Beki here, and two other online friends - A, who hasn't a blog, but you know who you are! and P at the fabulous Painting New Memories - have asked what they are, so I thought I'd put together a quick tutorial, as they are so easy and quick to make up. I think they thought I was trying to make a toy yo-yo from fabric (that's set me thinking, mind). But these aren't toys. They are also known as fabric puffs, and Suffolk puffs, and have been around for a long, long time.

First you need a circle of fabric. Use anything. I've used a favourite wine glass. There's a story about this wine glass, but I won't get distracted. :) Your finished yo-yo will end up roughly half the size of the original circle, so if you want 1 1/2 inch yo-yos, use a 3 inch circle.

Draw around it with pencil, biro, whatever - felt pen's not really ideal though as could bleed into the cotton. Then cut out your circle.

Now knot a long thread, and turn over a scant 1/4 inch hem. You need to hem around the edge.

Use running stitches. Doesn't have to be exact. All you need to remember is, if you make the stitches longer, the centre of your yo-yo will be tighter. If you want open centres, make the stitches smaller.

I've used big here.

Once you've gone all around the edge, and created a tiny hem, draw up the thread tight and secure with a couple of stitches. Then flatten out the puff, easing the drawn bit into the centre.

And voila. They are cute, and useful for decorating all sorts of things.

These are Beki's, and I can't wait to see how she's going to use them. I hope the tute's been useful for some. I admire people who have managed to make a quilt sized cover out of them. There's some fascinating information about them here. Take a look at the picture of the quilt on that link!

Monday, 4 June 2012

A quick catch up on a busy Jubilee weekend

We did it! We were in two minds about going up to town, because of the predicted crowds, but given I've never seen a river pageant, and given we live so close, it seemed crazy not to. There's not likely to be another like it in my lifetime. I'm so pleased we made the decision to go. We got a fabulous spot on Lambeth bridge with the Houses of Parliament as a backdrop. And it was fun. The boats were amazing - you could hear the bells for a long time (both from the barge and from churches around us in London):

We all loved the Gloriana.

And the cheers when Queenie appeared were amazing:

Notice she looked away from me! :) The Royal Barge was actually immense. I hadn't really appreciated how large it would be.

We've had a bit of a weekend of it, really. We decided to pop up to Epsom Derby on Friday (when the weather was boiling and we all got sunburned). Cantering up for a race:

And flashing back past on their way to the finish!

We also painted our nails:

Today is a day with friends, as we're exhausted. Exciting news on the block swap front - I'll do a post soon. Watch this space.