Following Stuff Up

After my little give away earlier this week I’ve been doing, well, not so much as I could have been.  Part of the problem is that I’m not very good at self-promoting.  So instead of me reminding people via various social media platforms, and developing an extensive mailing list, I just left it.  Fortunately enough people ‘signed up’ for the draw to not make it a complete embarrassment – partly I think due to at least one of the people I told about it letting other people know (thanks Ali!).

The trouble is I’m not sure where to go from here.  That isn’t strictly true – I know the general gist of it – raising awareness of me and my brand.  The problem part is that I just lose interest.  I’m easily distracted and should much rather do something else.  I’m fortunate enough to have just about enough other income so that my hobbies aren’t my livelihood, despite my trying a number of times a few years ago to change that.  Probably a good thing they didn’t work out and I stuck with a ‘proper’ job, I suppose.

I guess the question ought to be what next.  The honest answer is that I’m not really sure.  I had an order for a pack from a friend so I need to get that organised.  Then next week is Harrogate and at some point I have an ATC to make (the probable fabric for which arrived yesterday, yay!).  Other than that I’ve a belated birthday hat to make for another friend, a few quilts to finish off and about a million ideas on Ravelry.  I might need an extra few months adding to this year – I’m nowhere near ready for the next one.

November 17, 2016 at 2:15 pm Leave a comment

How to give stuff away

I finally had an idea of a ‘thing’ to give away via this blog which seemed like a sensible thing.

My craft space shares a room with our spare bed, amongst other things.  I was tidying up some of my assorted accumulation of stuff the other day as my mother was coming for a couple of days.  I was, of course, distracted by numerous other things during this (homework avoidance, anyone?) and what if I put those magazines with that fabric… maybe I should add a bit of something else… where was that box of… what about the pack of paper… And within a relatively short space of time I had the basic idea.

As I was at a bit of a loose end this morning, having mostly finished a jumper for Monkey which needed trying on, so I took a couple of photos of the ‘creativity pack’.  I even got the listing for Folksy mostly written up.  All that is left now is to publicise it.  Hence this post.

So, how does one give stuff away?  Well from dome of the blogs I follow there is random number generation involved.  And links to Facebook (which I’m not on) and twitter (which I don’t use much).  So I reckon it will be a case of finding out what works best for me.  And knowing my luck with these things, not necessarily getting it right first time – here goes, anyway.

To win a trial version of my de-stashing creativity pack, you need to leave a comment on this post that isn’t spam or selling something else.  As the pack contains a magazine and a big piece of fabric (among other things) this is only open to UK addresses. If you would like to look at the pack here is the link to the Folksy listing.  The winner will be picked by random number generation and I will contact you for your snail mail address. Entry closes on 13th November, good luck!

November 7, 2016 at 11:08 am 7 comments

Post-Summer Update

needs links adding when I get home

Mostly over summer I’ve been working on some ongoing quilting projects – they have advanced somewhat but aren’t finished so have been relegated to the pending pile.  I made a couple of mini quilts for Project Linus but ran out of enthusiasm for sewing and turned to knitting instead.

Monkey and I are away visiting at the moment and I tried to pack light.  I only brought two small, lightweight projects – one hitchhiker scarf and one les miserables scarf (using some of my leftover handspun) for when/if I get the scarf finished.

I’ve also brought a notebook and pens with me.  I’ve been pinning loads of amazing art journals on pinterest but when it comes to it I seem to be mostly sticking a photo or ticket on a page and making some notes, then doing some playing with pens or pencils on the other side.  To be fair I don’t have a huge art kit with me (no room in the suitcase), just a few pens and pencils.  But just the fact that I feel like I should justify taking up the packing space seems to be enough of a motivator. We’ll just have to see if the habit keeps up once we get home.

We have a couple of days in London planned – hopefully I’ll get lots of ideas and not too many souvenirs.  Ideas are great for re-invigorating the creative …thingy but souvenirs (interesting though they may be) have to fit in the suitcase.

October 14, 2016 at 8:35 am Leave a comment

Interim Hat

We made it to the steampunk market!  I had been a little anxious about my costume – the top it is a loose shirt under a long, medieval-styled waistcoat.  Then I have a petticoat which I found at the Antique Textiles Fair in Manchester a few months ago which I wore over some pale linen trousers.  I had been was worried it would look a bit medieval (and the hat a bit too recent) but all together it was fine.  There were such a wide variety of styles that people were wearing – lots of top hats, smart jackets & corsets.  Sometimes all three.  Pith helmets, goggles, the occasional fake weapon & and a guy with a (cardboard) metal arm.

As for my outfit – I ended up wearing the hat after all.  I didn’t have time to sew it all together properly so I left the tacking stitches in.  I rolled up the sticky-out-bit at the back so at least I could turn my head without my hat falling off.  I also tacked some feathers on the side – my proper feather isn’t here yet but I had some others that were ok.

The rest of the outfit was slightly more finished, although it will need a bit of work if I plan on wearing some parts of it again.  The shirt is too big except in the shoulders.  The corseted bit of the waistcoat is too big as well – I ended up having to pull the ribbon lacing so tight that it was vertical just so it would stay on.  Unfortunately I also managed to pull out part of one of the ribbon loops at the bottom, so that’ll need fixing.

The petticoat & linen trousers worked well, I thought – I looped the petticoat up & over its waist-cord at the back, so it looked a bit like a bustle.  I’m not sure what to do about the hat.  The main thing I need to think about is when the next event might be.  Or more importantly what the weather might be doing.  I think I’ll need something a bit more substantial if we go to more Leeds Steampunk Market events or to Haworth later in the year but I don’t really feel like starting anything straight away.  That is probably a good thing as I have occasionally been known to dive straight from one project to the next, whether finished or not.  It doesn’t bode well for wearing the stupid hat next time – I shall have to try to rein in my brainstorming imagination for a little while!

 

July 3, 2016 at 6:01 pm Leave a comment

Stupid Hat

We decided to go a-steampunking tomorrow rather than today, which is good as it means I can hopefully get Monkey’s bag a little more finished off.  His jacket is done – I even added a couple of press-studs for a closure.  It is supposed to have buttons but my machine refuses to comply with the buttonhole setting.  I should probably find the manual and give the machine a good talking to but just not right now.  I also finished his hat except the feathers he wants adding to it which shouldn’t take to long to sew on.

My outfit is also pretty much assembled – I decided to abandon the sleeves from my waistcoat – I can always add them on later if I feel like it – they only fasten on with press-studs so I guess that means they are optional.  The hat though – eugh!  I made the mistake of getting a hat pattern rather than following a top-hat tutorial like I did for Monkey.  The hat I picked out is fab so I persevered through about a million pins & a bit of a nuisance getting it in to the sewing machine.  I managed to get the lining in place – held in with tacking stitches which can easily be taken out afterwards.  The problem is that it isn’t really in keeping with the period (Victorian inspired).  I think I managed to find a way of wearing it would hopefully make it be a little less daft but there are two problems with this.  Partly because the big feather I ordered to decorate the hat (which would balance out the stupid sticky-out bit at the back) with hasn’t arrived yet (sad face).  But mostly because I’m hand-sewing the lining in place and it takes flipping ages!  If I manage to recover in time from the no-show of my lovely feather and have sufficient time left after finishing Monkey’s bag I’ll have to bodge something – replacing all the bright green tacking stitches with something a little less visible (big faff but quicker than doing the proper sewing up), and using just the smaller feathers which have already arrived.  Or just go without a hat.

July 2, 2016 at 10:54 am Leave a comment

Looming Deadline…

It has been a busy couple of weeks.  I got my Artists Trading Cards finished & sent off last week, and in-between times I’ve been working on outfits for Monkey & me to wear to the Steampunk Market  at Middleton Railway in Leeds this weekend.  How exciting!

We’re no-where near ready yet, of course – I think the only thing that is finished is my shirt.  I still have to finish Monkey’s hat, the sleeves of his jacket need hemming, and we haven’t even started the bag I promised him.  For me – my waistcoat is nearly finished (just press-studs to sew on) and my hat is still 4 pieces of sinamay with no lining.  Fortunately DH decided he wasn’t too bothered about a costume, as I wouldn’t have had time to make one anyway!

I think tomorrow’s tasks will mainly be decorating the body of Monkey’s bag and adding some shoulder straps to it.  I may have to forget about my hat – if it takes as long as Monkey’s has I’ve no chance.  Oh – mustn’t forget to go to the post office – I had another sale from my Folksy shop (yay!) so I need to get that sent off…

 

June 29, 2016 at 7:28 pm Leave a comment

Back To The Drawing Board!

I was up early this morning and got bored of knitting (I’m getting fed up of sleeves-in-the-round).  I was still on a bit of a sewing kick so I figured I’d try to plan out more accurately the shapes I’d need for my trading card.  I’m planning on doing a mini Dresden plate for part of it as I’ve been meaning to have a go for a while.

I cut out 15 wedges (which is how many I plan on using for the card) and set to stitching, using some of yesterday’s scraps.  An hour or so later I’d joined them all together and made a lovely (albeit slightly useless) crown.  It wasn’t completely useless as I reckon the wedges are about the right height, they are just far too straight.  I tried again, making a shorter, pointier template.  I also used the fabric I originally planned on.  Unfortunately, although it is lovely (sari off-cut yarn) it is too fine & flimsy.  And the pieces are so fiddly!  I think I will have to scrap the Dresden plate idea & find a different way of getting the image I want.

Chuck the protractor, where did I put my drawing board…?

Managed to find an possible alternative solution – I’ve ordered some lovely ribbon & sheer fabrics.  I’m planning on stitching with the ribbon (which is new to me) and layering the sheer fabrics over the top.  It’ll be an interesting experiment, no matter what the outcome.  Back to the drawing board for real now – I need to sketch an ink bottle!

June 7, 2016 at 4:43 pm 1 comment

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