Sunday, December 24, 2006

Saturday, December 23, 2006

The angelic guest

Bella aims to be the best kind of houseguest. Never intrusive, but prepared to be a good sport whatever happens. She waits quietly in her room in the morning for the family to finish using the bathroom. She has donned her new bathrobe with hand embroidered flowers over her gingham PJs that she bought especially for this Christmas holiday visiting friends in the country. She has a crick in her neck after sleeping in an unfamiliar bed with her hair wound round pieces of paper tissue and tied with ribbons, to give her otherwise straight hair some semblance of curls for tonight's party. - Now, was that the bathroom door? Yes, time to rush across the hall........ but, too late, one of the teenage girls beat her to it. Oh well, she'll just have to wait outside the door- one of the other guests popped out of her room at the same time, it would be silly to go back to her room now. And she may be an angel, but she is keeping her place in the queue, because she just has to go....

Monday, December 18, 2006

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas

Old St. Nick is back! He has been hiding out in the attic since January, but promises of fresh baked cookies tempted him downstairs today.
I don't usually decorate until the last week before Christmas, so that it all will be new and fresh when the holidays start. That means that a lot of my homemade creatures and decorations are hidden away for about 49 weeks a year. When I finally get the boxes down and start opening them, it is like meeting old friends again, and I find myself chatting with them, asking them where they want to sit this year and comiserating with them about having been squashed together in a dark box for months and months - quite batty, don't you think?
Never mind! I'm still a kid at heart, and who wouldn't be cheered by the sweet little faces of these cherubs? Never mind about those chubby, less than perfect hands and feet.
And what about my snow family? Covered in artificial snow and getting all tangled up in those Christmas lights - who can blame them, having to make do with those akward branches instead of hands? And still they're smiling! I must admit I have a thing abut snowmen, so they tend to turn up everywhere at this time of the year. The great thing about them is that they can stay on a bit longer as well, since snowmen aren't out of season until March or April. These two seem to think they have been hanging in there for ages already, politely hiding heir yawns, but quite ready to go to bed in their little PJs, thank you! Yes, it's beginning to look a lot like Christmas here, but I still have boxes to get out of the attic, some cleaning to do and a few presents to wrap. My bathroom angels are almost finished, and I only have the binding left on my Christmas table mats. Now if only I could get the rest of the quilting done on that tree skirt I'd be ready for the holidays, but there's nothing like some last-minute stress and I might get there yet... ;-)

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Bathrobes for angels...

It's the Twilight Zone here...
The weather has been so bad lately that I feel I haven't seen daylight for weeks. But that doesn't stop some angels from seeing the light of day - the little light there is...
Things seemed a bit akward at first, but these bits of wire sticking through her head didn't seem to bother Bella much. Until her eyes were added, that is... Then she started looking accusingly at me, so I had to help her with her hair. Lots of pigtails with ginham ribbons in them. She seemed happy with that, until she realized that she had next to nothing on - hence the blush. I'd better get a move on with her bathrobe so she can keep her modesty intact and get her a set of wings. Because she is to become a Bathroom Angel, waiting in line to do her morning "toilette".

Well, I did say that I wouldn't make that many Christmas pressies this year, but I just had to make two of these angels to go with the Sleepy Angels I made and gave away last year. I'm proud to say I have done most of my Christmas shopping today, so now I have a pile of books and other presents to wrap. I'll do some more baking tomorrow, and then I should be all set- I think... No doubt I'll come up with something I Just Have To Do at the very last minute. We cant have Christmas without some Traditional Seasonal Stress, now can we? But that's half the fun of the Holidays, isn't it ;-)

Friday, December 08, 2006

WIP report

My sewing space is a continuous work in progress - well, my whole flat is for that matter. It seems I'm constantly tidying, sorting and getting rid of stuff in order to create a more structured living environment. Living in a small flat is a challenge in itself, if you are a craft person - where do you put all your stuff? And if you are a craft person who loves books as well, it becomes even more of a challenge - books tend to pile up everywhere! I seem to be perpetually moving things from one location to another, and current craft projects tend to spill into other rooms as I move about, do a bit of stitching in front of the TV, or iron my fabric in the kitchen. When company arrives it's a mad rush to clear the living room of all the paraphernalia of my current project(s). That sometimes leaves my sewing space looking like this. I feel quite brave to show you this, actually, as it is a sight I rarely let my friends see. I have an ambition to keep a home that is tidy enough to avoid all that panicky clearing of clutter when the doorbell rings, and I feel that I am gradually getting there. This is a question of storage, and of actually getting rid of things I don't need. But as you can see I have some way to go before getting myself properly organized. I have started by getting these great boxes from IKEA. They are great for storing all the bits and pieces that a crafter needs to have at hand, but proper labelling is essential so that I find the things I need right without going through all the boxes...
So my current project is all about finding my sewing machine under all the stuff I have piled up on my table. I have made some headway in this project by sorting through everything, so far ending up with a pile of unfinished projects at one end of the table. One challenge now is to reduce that pile before starting too many new projects.
I couldn't help myself though, once I unearthed my sewing machine under all that clutter, so this is my current and new WIP: a basket liner with pockets. If it looks familiar, it's because I have used leftovers from my Amy Butler quilt (still in progress). This is quite deliberate, I'm proud to say! The quilt will grace my sofa once it is finished, and I thought up this basket idea as a way of keeping my sewing equipment in one place when I bring it into the living room to do a bit of hand stitching, knitting or whatever in front of the TV. I have found a nice sea grass basket, which is big enough to hold a few projects, as I tend to work on more than one thing at a time, and with the new quilt and matching basket, things should look a bit more tidy when company arrives. And the process of getting more organized continues as my biggest WIP...