confessions of a fabric obsessive

Monthly Archives: May 2012

It’s my birthday and I’ll be happy if I want to

I got up from the chair in front of my computer this morning (very slowly and a bit painfully) and I thought: “I’m going to blog about me today”.

It’s that time of year when I run out of fingers and toes when counting my new age, again. I’m a year older than Andre Aggassi, Kelly Holmes, Macy Gray and  Uma Thurman,  and a year younger than singers Kylie Minogue  and Anastasia.

The day I was born: The Beatles “Get Back” was number 1 in the UK music charts, Patrick Troughton was Doctor Who.  Seven  weeks later, man set foot on the moon for the first time: a few months later the Woodstock Festival happened.  Sesame Street and Scooby-Doo  were aired for the first time.   Harold Wilson was in Number 10, Nixon was in the White House, US troops were still in Vietnam. A few months before, Elvis has just recorded “Suspicious Minds”. The Beatles had already played their last live performance,  on the roof of  Apple Studios. Concorde had just had its first test flight.

Yes. I’m that old.

I’m definitely starting to enjoy my birthdays rather than being disappointed by them (ages 15 to 37), or dreading them (ages 28 to 31, and 36 to 39). Has the occasion changed or have I?

Me, definitely me.

I’ve learnt to ask for what I want, to say no to what I don’t want, and I’ve found (and hung on to) people who are happy to hug me on “National Claire Day”. As you may have spotted in my posts, I’ve had a child and work-stress free year (almost a year) now that my children are both away at university (proud Mom moment, sorry), so I’ve had a lot of time to think, and work things out in my head.

I’m a lot more together today than I have been for years, and more content too.  I’ve accepted myself (cliché moment, I know) and I’m working with what I’ve got (or with what I am) instead of trying to be the same as everyone else. I’m never going to be great at remembering things (apart from completely random and useless stuff) so I’ve stopped trying to remember and trained myself to record the important stuff instead.

I now take (lots of) pleasure in (lots of) little things and have let go of a lot of the “stuff” that was making me unhappy. OMG, I’ve finally grown-up!  🙂

One of my friends sent me this:

If you want to see other things that make me happy, just click on the links to my facebook page or my etsy favourites and you’ll see lots of things that put a smile on my face.

I’m being taken out to dinner tonight by my fiancé, Mr CB, so I’m off to get myself dressed up.

Happy (43-year-old) ClaireBear

Aging Sucks (catatonicinmyhead.wordpress.com) my heart goes out to her, I used to be incredibly disappointed too
Happy Birthday to me (oldmdgirl.blogspot.com)
Birthdays are good for you (captainofthissurvivorship.wordpress.com)
Happy Birthday Astrid! (kipsoton.wordpress.com)

My birthday last year

Happy Birthday to me (living in interesting times)

I love patchwork

UPDATE: this offer is over now, but I’ll keep my eyes open for more.

Well, you kinda know that already, but this time I’m talking about the book.

Of the authors two books on Zakka sewing, I prefer “I Love Patchwork”. There are more items in there that I want to make, and would actually use. I’ve just finished reading a copy I got from the library and while I was reading it I thought “I’ve got to get this book?”

And the reason I’m blogging about it today? It’s on offer on Interweave at 10 US cents for the e-book!!!

Seriously, that’s not even 10p! Admittedly a hard-copy would be nicer, but hey! less than 10p!The e-book is in pdf format with the advantage that you can print the templates straight from your computer (just remember to print just the pdf page number, or you’ll be printing all 161 pages of the book!)

You’ll need to register with interweave, and if you don’t want any newsletters, remember to unclick the “send me your newsletter” box, but 10 US cents!! Jump to their shop here .

What’s the catch? It’s only at this price for 48 hours, quick get it before it goes back up to its normal price on Tuesday, May 29 2012 at 11:59 pm USA Central Time.

I’ve got mine!! (Can you tell I’m excited?)

Zakka Sew-Along (oneshabbychick.typepad.com)
Zakka Style sew along! (sewtakeahike.typepad.com)
Day 43: A Patchwork Quilt (30dans365.wordpress.com)

I wanna new bag….part 2

Trying to make this bag using this tutorial on the-japanese-art-of-folding-and-tying-fabric-to-make-bags (Furoshiki) on Craft Envy

with this stuff (ripstop nylon)

didn’t really work.

Two reasons,

1) maker error. The ripstop I had came in a 1 metre length and I didn’t want to cut into it too much, so I just squared it off and went with that.

Much. Too. Big.

2) ripstop is very light and and has no drape at all. This turns out to be a bad thing (two bad things if you’re going to be pedantic). It’s also very slippery and rustle-y and, to be honest, felt like I was carrying a bin bag tied over my shoulder. My idea to allow me to put one of my denim corsages on my bag without putting holes in the ripstop worked really well. As you can see I tucked a length of cotton tape (the white stripe a two-thirds of the way down the photo is actually a bit of cotton tape) into one corner before I tied it off, and this gave me something to pin the brooch to that I didn’t mind putting a hole in. (I didn’t bother pinning it on once I’d decided that the fabric wasn’t going to work)  I’ll have to remember this one!

I still liked the idea though so I decided it was time for a different fabric.

I looked through my stash very, very quickly. Mr CB was here by this time. I still wanted a new bag.

I was wearing a purple t-shirt and a purple fleece jacket so I picked a purple flame print quilting cotton, to reference the “Hot Rods and Motorbikes” theme of the afternoon.

See, I do think things through. Occasionally.

I squared off the 1 yard of fabric that I had, and did all the tying and stuff that is needed to produce the bag shape (I felt a bit like I needed a stick to hang it over my shoulder, but that’s not important right now).

I do think that the full effect of the bag is lost a little in the pattern of the fabric (and that this bag is half the height/length of the previous one) and the blurriness of the photo.

Easy? Oh, yes.

A good bag? Urm, well…yes and no.

Definitely a quick and effective way of getting an extra bag quickly and easily if you have too much to carry, and happen to have a very large square of fabric about your person. Not very secure for a handbag (purse) though, a couple of times I put the bag down and then found my purse on the ground next to it.

I love the idea though. Do I want to hem all round a piece of lightweight upholstery fabric to make another one? Not sure, I’m have to think about that.

I’ll probably make the purple flame fabric into a Japanese knot bag, like these, I would have made one on Saturday if I had more time:

Maybe even reversible, with my lovely purple flame fabric on one side and the purple ripstop on the other.

Yes, I’ve just spotted that this isn’t going to be a very secure bag either, but the innate roundness of the design should at least stop stuff sliding through the gaps.

I’ll keep you posted.

(Yes, this post has also suffered from premature publication, like the last-but-one. It published before I had  taken and added the last few photos. When I got home from my friends’ house (with loads more fabric to play with), I was too tired  to mess about with my camera and there was no light, even at 5 o’clock in the afternoon. Tomorrow. Promise. Done now.)


Other interesting stuff

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