Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Blast from the past: Crab apple jelly

Well, I have finally managed to establish a connection between my laptop and my camera, which means (a) no need to buy a new camer and (b) I can finally share pictures of long-ago-mentioned craftiness.

You may recall this entry on my attempt to make crab abble jelly. It eventually turned into crab apple glue, but I had so much fun trying! Finally, I can bring you the pictures! The best bits of the whole process were (1) the lovely appley smell, which I cannot obviously convey by internet, and (2) the amazingly warm colours. Feast your eyes:

I particularly love the colour in the last one. If only I had a crab apple tree now! But alas, my parents have moved and I live in a fourth floor apartment in the city centre - therefore trees, at least, are rather beyond my capabilities at this time. Oh, for an organsed forage!

Monday, June 6, 2011


Well, it's been a long time since I posted here but to be quite honest, between moving into a new appartment and starting a new job, a new Spanish course and taking up several additional activites, I've barely had time to breathe!

I have been very active on the crafty front. I have long wished to dive into the deep end of sewing, but lacked a sewing machine. I looked at second-hand and cheap options, decided that even if I had the money I didn't have the space, and squared up to my options: handsewing or handsewing.

Now, there's not a huge amount of information about handsewing kicking around on the web - a bit of embroidery stuff, and that's pretty much it. I also felt that many of the free patterns were rather uninspiring (in direct contrast with free crochet and knitting patterns in places like Ravelry). My family already have this rather negative stereotypical image of me as some DIY-ecofreak-hippy nutcase, so if I make my own clothes, I really want them to look (at first glance and from a distance) as though they are good enough to be bought. Mostly for that - "where did you buy that?" - moment.

The daunting prospect of spending lots of money on patterns and fabric only to never get around to finishing the stitching then loomed before me - I am very bad at procrastinating and rarely finish projects. So I started simple (but not small) with a tablecloth - fun fabric, very basic stitching. And voila! I am sitting at my kitching table, writing this, with a red cotton with white polka dots cloth which delights my soul everytime I see it.

So now the second tablecloth is in production, and most exciting of all! A dress pattern I ordered has arrived - Very Easy Vogue. (I'm stacking the odds in favour of success!) And I've just found a funky independent not-too-expensive fabric shop. Three guesses what I'll be shopping for on Saturday? :D

Again, I am reminded by how much I love making things. There is such a sense of satisfaction from creating something, from leaving behind me a small legacy of (hopefully) pretty and functional objects which would never have existed had I not decided to make them. The thrill of the tablecloth was even enough to make me do the ironing this week, for almost the first time ever, because I couldn't bear to leave it rumpled...


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