It’s Raining, it’s Pouring…

I am feeling very lucky right now.  The builders got the roof on a couple of weeks ago and a few days later the rain came; It’s much needed, there has been very little rain here in Kent and the garden has been looking a little pathetic as a result, but oh am I glad we got the roof on first!   The builders took a break last week, on another job and waiting for our windows to be ready but before they left they put our new staircase in which is a major development as it’s straight so for the first time in 3 years we are able to move some of the larger pieces of furniture upstairs.  This includes my beloved glass fronted cabinate which is one of 3 items I bought while I was waiting for the sale of my first flat to complete, many, many years ago (good old Ilkley Salerooms have a lot to answer for).  I have always assumed it would house my fabric and nic-nak collection which, of course, would be perfectly displayed through it’s lovely glass doors.  In reality it has been stuffed to the gills with all sorts over the past few years, it’s like a Tardis and on emptying it to carry upstairs I filled all the kitchen surfaces with it’s contents.

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And that’s just some of it, there was also a large box of of old sketch books and art supplies and another of millinery bits and bobs along with my most precious vintage books.

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Whilst the said cabinate has been in the living room we (well, I) put a plain ‘etching’ film on the front, party to hide the mess inside but also because the glass is not safety glass, so should the boys break it the film should hold the glass fragments together, at least that’s the theory.  I decided to remove this and replace with an etching film containing a pattern from FrostBrite.  We have used this design before in the bathroom and I really like it as it works well with all our Marimekko blinds.  We have also used film from PurlFrost in the past who have some nice designs but are a little more expensive.

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(This is a shot of the bathroom window as it’s hard to see the design on the cabinet glass).

There is a definite knack to attaching the film, I rushed and creased it whilst trying to peel of the backing paper, I hadn’t enough time and it was getting dark.  I am rather cross with myself, but it’s done now.  The other thing I noticed was the film from FrostBite isn’t as dense as the one we have used from PurlFrost so creates a more see through effect.  Still, I like it and feel happier that the glass is a little safer.

Just to illustrate how long ago I imagined this cabinet in my ‘studio’ I bought this paper from the large Paperchase on Totternaham Court Road

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for lining the shelves over 3 years ago (shuuush, don’t tell the husband, he already thinks I’m nuts but I tend to buy things I fall in love with if I see where I plan to use them, I just didn’t think it would be 3 years).  They used to have a floor of handmade and art paper, not sure if they still do?

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The best thing is being able to have some of my vintage stash out on display, mostly things that belonged to my Gran and finally being able to put my fabric away safe from dust and direct light.

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Last shot is of the lovely Hector Wall Light…not sure where it came from, I am a canny internet shopper and spent a while getting the lowest price, we have one on either side of the room.  I bought a Hector bedside lamp years ago, in fact from Laura Ashley for a very, very reasonable price before they became a hit and the price soared.

So, the builders are back next week and hopefully they will be all done by Friday and I can have my house back.  I am rather too excited!

If you go down in the woods today…

It’s been a bit of a stressful couple of weeks.  I had a frantic Roman Blind order to do for my sister in zero time so had to pull out all the stops whilst also doing all F’s last week of Pre-School parties and new school ‘taster’ days.  The housework got ignored and I got to the stage where I made stupid sewing mistakes (got to love that unpicker I got free with my machine many years ago!).  

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Above is one of my favourite fabrics for blinds, Lumimarja, by Erja Hirvi for Marimekko.  We have the same fabric in silver and also with orange berries as blinds in our house.  It especially looks good with the gold silk dupion border on either side.  The blinds were very wide, 220cm, so one of the hardest problems was laying them out on the floor for marking and tacking, each time I got them perfectly lined up the boys would come running in and jump all over them.  I got just a bit stressed.

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I survived the panic sewing and decided to reward myself by swapping to small scale projects for a while, the kind you can pick up and put down as the mood dictates and that don’t take over the house.  I mentioned a while back some lovely new very snuggly cashmere/wool fabric I bought and had a pretty good idea I wanted to make a simple teddy to add to my collection.  I know I said I was trying to cut down on softies in the shop, to try and expand other areas of making but for this fabric a teddy was in order.

This is the first attempt and needs some tweaking.  Maybe a bit slimmer in body with bigger arms and the orange stitching was simply to hand, but I am pleased all the same.  Does he need a tail?  I thought so but husband says no…not sure he is to be trusted he knows little about sewing.  It’s nice to make something lovely and simple and I have been dying to use the My Folklore fabric by Lecien which has been in my stash for a while.

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Also as antidote to the mess and mayhem of our house I put my foot down and demanded more shelving in the spare room/studio so a very early morning trip to Ikea was in order for Saturday.  It was a good excuse buy more fabric (it would have been rude not to at their prices) and some sweet nibbles from the Ikea food shop as a reward for a day of unpacking books that have been boxed since we moved 3 years ago!  It’s lovely to finally have them to hand, who knows in another few years we may finally unpack the last boxes!