Friday, 17 January 2020

It's a stitch up

I've slowed up a bit on this, playing a waiting game. I spend a lot of time looking at it, thinking about the next step. I want the background to be simple, with not much detail so I can add some bigger trees and a sun. But I am finding it hard to tone it down to not make it too complicated. Trouble is I get carried away with stitching, I want to add more, but keep telling myself that less is more. 
The squiggly line is soft embroidery cotton couched on with thin cotton of a matching colour. The chain stitch is six strands of white embroidery cotton.
Here I have used hairy blue wool, woven through running stitches. The little tree section is finished now.


The red section is still to fill, waiting for ideas. Something will come to me. When that's done I will make the sun.
Toodle pip.  ilona

Thursday, 16 January 2020

Looking back at 20 years ago

For most of my life I have been writing letters to magazines and newspapers, about any subject I found interesting, and to put my point of view across. I enjoyed writing at school and wrote lots of stories for my own amusement. I remember the teacher telling us to write about a very important person. Most of my class mates wrote about someone famous, I wrote about my mum.

I have diaries dating back to 1963, and continued filling them out for many more years. I tried my hand at writing short stories and articles for women's magazines, some of which were published and I received a small payment, some were rejected for one reason or another. There are lots of people out there doing the same thing, so I think they were swamped with writings and only had room in their publication for a few of them.

In this video I am reading a letter I wrote to a local newspaper, over twenty years ago.



Wow, it's windy outside. I've just done a walk and litter pick while I was waiting for this to upload onto yoootooob. Now I'm going to get a late lunch. Toodle pip.  ilona

Tuesday, 14 January 2020

Beginners embroidery

Crafty Club was full house yesterday, not enough room around the tables to fit me in. All squashed up together, and very noisy. I might miss next week. I didn't manage to sell much wool, possibly they have enough, or it wasn't the right type, colour, etc, for the projects they want to do. I think the people up the road will have to try and sell it elsewhere. They did mention car boot sales, so maybe they will give that a go when the season starts. 
Yesterday afternoon was fun, teaching my friend some simple embroidery stitches to get her going. This is my demonstration sampler, small pieces of scrap felt to show the basics. 

We decided it would be a good idea for her to make a sampler book, so she could add pages to it as she learnt more stitches, and to practice on. I suggested using felt because it is easy to work with as a beginner. Start off doing big stitches, then eventually she can go on to using other fabrics for more delicate work. 
We did running stitch, back stitch, blanket stitch, and chain stitch. There is such a lot you can do with these four basic stitches. I have told her to keep practicing these as homework, and we will move on to other stitches, and look at ways these can be used to make small items in felt. 
As a complete beginner she picked it up very well. One to one works well for her at the moment. Eventually she may feel confident enough to try the Crafty Club. Now I'm going to get on with my own sewing. Toodle pip.  ilona

Sunday, 12 January 2020

Wool for sale

Hello. A little bit more has been added. White chain stitch across a blue sky, and some trees on the horizon. There will be more stitching to add more trees. 
The people from up the road brought me another big bag of wool to sell at Crafty Club tomorrow. Not quite as much as last time, but enough to fill my shopping trolley and a Tesco shopping bag. I think the ladies will be chuffed as the prices are very cheap. The money goes back to them, I am helping them out.

£1.50 for four 100grm balls of pale blue.

£2 for six balls of 50grm pale green. All the wool is good quality and British made.

A friend is coming round tomorrow afternoon, she wants to do some embroidery but doesn't know any stitches. I'll show her some simple ones to get her started. We will have a little one to one workshop at my dining room table.

Friday, 10 January 2020

Walking by moonlight

It was 3pm when I went out for a walk this afternoon. Five miles usually takes me an hour and a half so I should have got back before dark. It didn't happen because I stopped to talk to a woman who was seeing to her horses. 
The sun was going down on one side, and the moon was coming up on the other. Looking like a full moon tonight. 
There is only about ten minutes between these two photo's. Passing a derelict farm building.

Should have taken a torch really but I didn't expect to be caught out in the dark. Good job I know the route, walking across fields in the moonlight is a bit eerie. Pleased to see the lights as I approached the village. I really must set off a bit earlier.
Toodle pip.  ilona