I live and craft in England (or perhaps “live to craft...”?). I love colour and I love pretty things.
I must have been a magpie or a butterfly in a previous life, such is my attraction to colourful and shiny stuff (aka, pretty, shiny things).
This blog is my attempt to make sense, and keep track, of what I make.
confessions of a fabric obsessive
Tag Archives: Life
This is just to update you all with my current status. I’m sure a few of you will have noticed there’s been a bit of a gap in my blogging recently. My other, non-sewing (teaching) life has temporarily taken over and will continue to dominate my waking hours for a while yet.
I’m very sad about the lack of fabric-y sewing goodness that is going on in my life as a whole, but on the other hand I’m working in a job I love that will (eventually) allow me to sew professionally too.
Not enough hours in the day to get enough sleep, never mind do fun stuff. I have loads of photos that I need to blog about, and so many sewing projects in the pipeline to tell you all about too.
I just need a ten day week, or perhaps a thirty hour day?
My Spoonflower shop is doing well. I have a few collections of fabric designs including one collection completely created from my own photographs. I am regularly getting messages that this person or that person has bought one of my designs.
I am, as always, incredibly behind with my Craftsy Block of the Month. I might get a chance to catch up around December when the college is closed. Maybe. If I do, you’ll be the first to know.
Quilt requests have been backing up.
I want/need to make one for myself as well. Maybe over the summer holidays?
My WIPs list is so long, I despair. I’ll have to just pick one at random and sew till it’s finished over the Xmas break.
I can’t remember if I blogged about my day trip to the Fashion section of the Collections Resource Centre that belongs to Leicester Museums. I went with a group of other clothes-and-sewing-mad women and there were so many oooh’s and aaaah’s and oh wow’s ….
I know I haven’t shown you all the photos I took at my first trip to the Festival of Quilts (or have I?) at Birmingham’s NEC a little while ago. Maybe next year I’ll go for two days instead of just one. So many quilts, so little time…
I don’t make traditional quilts but I appreciate them like crazy…
Sew-less Claire Bear
At the moment I am loving:
- Gertie’s New Book for Better Sewing (angrychicken.typepad.com) if I don’t have time to do it, at least I can read about sewing during my commute
- My weekly email Snippets sewing tips from Coletterie (www.coletterie.com
- Drooling over the costumes at the V&A’s Hollywood Costume Exhibition. It runs until almost the end of January, I hope I’ll get a chance to go
Now that my children are back from university for the summer and I’m a full-time mom again, I find myself having to remind them to put their things away. I’m getting last year’s answers too; “but what’s the point, the house is full of (insert your own choice of word here)”. Biting my tongue so I didn’t get distracted from what I needed to do (just do it please) but these words stuck in my mind.
As you might know, I’ve spent months being firm with myself, clearing out what I don’t need any more and trying to organise myself better. I’m now at the stage where all that’s left is stuff that hasn’t been put away properly or doesn’t have a proper home yet.
So I thought I would post about the organisation and storage “solutions” I have used and the ones I have yet to complete.
I’ve used this idea (and put it in an old photo frame) from Pickled Herring for my dangly earrings, so that they don’t tangle up together and so I can see what I’ve got (my word, some of those green earrings are long)
and a mug tree (yes, but a shiny mug tree) for my necklaces, bracelets and cuffs.
The rest of my jewellery is put away in a proper jewellery box, and I’m happy with how that works.
I’ve finally found the type of trouser hanger that Lindsay from The Cottage Home used for her ribbon storage idea, as you can see not much of my ribbon is on spools, but I’m saving up my cotton reels to wind the longer lengths of ribbon on to as they just fit on the hanger.
(if anyone else in the UK wants to do this, pop to Poundstretcher quick before they sell out)
Yes, I have quite a lot of ribbon. I like pretty, colourful things: ribbon is pretty and colourful. I buy 2m lengths at the Bullring Market to cheer myself up. There are worse things I could spend my 59p on.
I’ve already shown you the pouches for my spectacles, mp3 players, my long wrap and my hand-sewing-needlebook:
Although I don’t have the same type of drawers with the scoop-outs that Cindy has, I’ve done this with a spare chest of drawers that came down from the loft, and I’m very happy!
there’s still some fabric that hasn’t quite made it into the drawers, but I’m working on it. There are two more drawers in this chest, and I think I’m going to need them!
I haven’t yet finished storing my thread in a way that pleases me. At the moment they’re in old biscuit tins and clear plastic tubs so at least I usually know where they are and I can sometimes find what I’m looking for. I’m planning to do this with them, as soon as I remember to buy a huge picture frame from a charity/thrift shop.
My chances of getting my thread organised like this if I have to make a frame first are slim-to-none. If I put the nails in at an angle, I think I can hang the frame up without the reels falling off instead of having to prop it up so the frame is lounging against the wall.
Writing this now, I can see why I haven’t done much sewing lately, and I’m starting to feel better about it. Looking at my photos, I appear to be having a fuzzy day too. Oh well.
I’ll leave you with more photos of
my precious, my babies, my beautiful, colourful quilting fabrics.
The last few weeks (or maybe longer) my life has been full of job applications, job interviews, clearing out the house and tidying up what’s left. I rearranged my back room/study/computer room/boxroom a while ago on a whim, quickly shoving stuff into carrier bags to get them out of the way so I could paint the ceilings and the walls. I couldn’t put off unpacking those bags and putting away the contents properly any longer.
I’ve had to get on with organising myself in case I actually get offered one of the (fab) teaching jobs I’ve applied for, as well as the one-evening-a-week placement I’ve already been offered so that I can do my Certificate in Education (UK qualification that allows/qualifies me to teach adults). I went for a job interview, got offered a placement and a mentor for the course. Not a bad result, but I still need a paying job.
If I manage to pull this off, I would be teaching an evening class one evening a week, attending university a day a week both during term time and working a “normal” job four days a week as well. I say a four days a week because I know my limits and a part-time course, part-time placement on to of a full-time five-day-a-week job would be way too much for me to handle. Not that I’m panicking at all (maybe just a little bit, eeek!)
Not much sewing has been done since I finished this bathmat.
In fact, absolutely no sewing at all has been done. My whole life has been a no sew zone (sniff).
My WIPs are in exactly the same parlous state they were last month and now threatening to take over my living room. I sew in my living room: it has a lot of daylight and no-one moans about all my fabric. My Pile Of Shame (aka my mending) is still as embarrassingly shameful as it was last time I posted a photo of it so I won’t bore you with that one.
I know that I haven’t shown you my upcycled bags (mostly because I haven’t finished the purple one), and there are probably a few other things that have temporarily escaped my mind.
I am still incredibly behind on my Block of the Months (Blocks of the Month?). I wasn’t going to post about the new BOM for July (where did June go?), but I thought I’d look at the new blocks on Craftsy, if only for entertainment value.
Dresden Plate Blocks, oh dear.
I thought that the hand sewing on the paper piecing blocks back in April would be a stumbling block (sorry for the pun). If you’re wondering what a Dresden Plate block is….
…using parallelograms rather than squares or rectangles (I did tell you that my other life is a maths-teacher-for-adults right?).
Oh dear, oh de
ar oh dear.
and it uses the same idea of piecing parallelograms to make a circle.
Now I have two completely different things to panic about, the July BOM and a potential university course (let me explain that I went to university once, I loved my course, the campus and the wonderful staff, but it didn’t go well, broke my heart to quit and I’m still on the tablets, enough said?).
I even tried to avoid going to university by tracking down the same course on a college campus instead, but the college that used to do the course I now need, now doesn’t. Insert rude word here. In the meantime I have to write a university application, revise my own maths skills to make sure I pass that particular assessment, work on my telephone skills so that I can pass the telephone interview/speaking
and listening assessment for the course after I’ve submitted the application (did I mention I have a slight hearing problem on top of my dyslexia?).
And get a job.
Right now, I can only quote the late (and great) Douglas Adams and Dad’s Army, and a certain poster, towel and mug logo
Organisational Queen (and still slightly panicking,) Claire Bear
( I really wanted to have a bear version of Munch’s “The Scream” instead of my ClaireBear logo here, but…)