Sunday, 26 June 2016

Playing with fabric scraps

So, I was looking at the till roll, scrappy strip
and thinking ....
what if I used it as centres in log cabin blocks...
so I had a go and now have 9 x 9" blocks, still using the same bag of scrap fabrics.
I will put them together with more scrappy strips, maybe have them between the blocks, maybe not, haven't decided yet.
Maybe I should draw a plan but that would be far more disciplined than I generally am lol
I will keep you informed, but there's still a lot of fabric in this one scrap bag, so the next step is more scrappy till roll strip : )

Sunday, 19 June 2016

Car boot buys and till rolls!

So I nipped to the car boot this morning and struck lucky as well as buying my bananas for work this next week : )

Someone on a Facebook patchwork group had posted a tutorial for using till rolls as a backing, making with her instructions,
attractive strings of flying geese.
I imagine most of you will already have seen the idea but it was new to me. She was using up her scraps and 2.5" width till rolls and the result was really nice, so of course I thought I'd try it too, some-when or other.

So this morning, 2 x packs of 5 till rolls for a £1 - bargain!
The lady who sold them, said -
I suppose you've got a machine they fit then!
Her face when I said,
No I'm going to use them for patchwork
I didn't explain!
Now the lass on FB, drew vertical lines down each side of the till roll strips
and then found the centre line between them and drew that in vertically.
Then she  drew diagonal lines, in V's towards that centre line,
all down the length of the till rolls.
She then placed fabric pieces in a flip and stitch format down the length of the roll, forming a flying geese strip.
Well I wasn't going to do all that drawing of lines down 2 miles of till roll obviously, since all I want are scrappy strips which will use up some of my scraps!
Not so much flying geese as skew whiffy V's!

Once stitched together I cut them half an inch wider than the till roll itself, then spray starched them on the front.
It was surprisingly easy to tear off the till roll from the back since it was serrated anyway where it had been stitched through.
Clever that!
Then I starched and ironed the back too for some stability.
Because I've used scraps and lost all sense of fabric bias,I ran lines of machine stitching down each outer edge, which may be overkill,
but it will keep them intact till I use them.
It hasn't made a dent in my smallest bag of scraps, so I will be making several more!

The other thing I couldn't leave at the car boot was this for £1.50...

 Its clearly an old frame and canvas and it is so charming, I couldn't resist it. I have washed the canvas already and the yellow eye has come up beautifully and thankfully we had a couple of hours of sunshine with a breeze, so its dried nicely.
I think I may cut Percy Parrot out at some stage and use it in a textile collage, though he is almost worth framing exactly as he is, even though he is not finished!

Oh and the other things I got were 1 full Au de Toilette and a 2/3's full PERFUME! bottle of Lair Du Temps for £10!
There's a chap comes once a year with all the ex display stock from various  stores, they must replace the display bottles once a year and he buys that stock and sells them at the car boot.
I have bought from him several times over the years and struck lucky today as he reduced the prices of what was on the table.
Instead of £8 each bottle, I paid £10 for two - but I don't think he realised one was actually perfume : )

Saturday, 18 June 2016

Purritty flowers, circle blocks and a VI students view on life

June is flying by, but not exactly 'flaming' at the moment.
That old saying about 'flaming June' is a bit off kilter at the moment but it does mean I don't have to worry about watering the garden!

Some brighter, more fun circle blocks, though some hearts are creeping in and a bee hive too.

Hilly puss was laid on the table but seemed to take umbridge when I laid the blocks out lol she's normally purrittier than this lol

This above picture was taken earlier this month when the sun paid us a visit and that's her side of the table I used today : )

I made another simple nursery rhyme storyboard for work, Red Riding Hood this time.

The house and RRH are velcro'd on/off and Granma and the wolf can be slotted into the 'bed', whichever way round.
Its my version of a topsy-turvy doll and the boy figure is
now the Huntsman.

At our last stitchy club meeting, one of our members displayed this little quilt for us to see. I thought it was delightful and you can see the card that inspired her alongside it too.

Now something you might like to read from one of the Visually Impaired students on our caseload.
His name is Lenny and I have his and his tutors permission to publish this.
He has been shortlisted in a competition and his essay is on the RNIB website, along with the others shortlisted too.
Hope you enjoy reading it : )

Dear Candidate
Very many thanks for your recent submission to the Onkyo Essay Contest.  I am very pleased to be able to inform you that you have been successful and your essay has been selected as one of five UK entries to be put forward to the European level of the competition.  Your essay will be posted onto the RNIB website ( ) in the next day or so, along with those from other finalists.  Many congratulations for succeeding at this level of the competition and I wish you the best of luck for the next stage.  The European deliberations take quite some time and we do not expect to hear the final decision until the end of September.  If you have any queries in the meantime please do not hesitate to get in touch.
With best wishes
Mandy White
Project Manager (Braille)
RNIB (Royal National Institute of Blind People) PO box 173, Peterborough, PE2 6WS

Age 15
1,101 words

Braille is Brilliant

When I was 5 years old I started to learn Braille.  I practised using the keys on the Perkins brailler.  When I was working with my teaching assistant she showed me all different letters.  She showed me a line of Braille letters and asked me to find a different one.  I learnt all of the Braille alphabet I loved it because it was fun.  I was a bit nervous because I thought I would get it all wrong.  I found the contractions exciting. Contractions were helpful because they are short-forms, so that I don't have to do the grade ones.  I've got a good memory because I can remember important things and things from a very long time ago.  Braille is the most important because it is my reading and writing.  I enjoy Braille books and talking books because the Braille tickles my fingers.  It gives me information and I like listening to Roald Dahl, Harry Potter David Walliams I can ask for books in Braille and work from my Teaching Assistant and Support Teacher.  When I first went on my Braille note I thought it was just a normal Braille note but I can save files on to memory sticks and the Braille note reads back my work.  My work comes out of a document so that I can print it off in letters so that everyone can read it.  At home I have got a Perkins to review the books I’ve read, my home work and write anything. Also at home I can label CDs and DVDs.  I've labelled the washing machine so that I can do my washing at home.  I know how to do the dryer. At School I have a library with Braille books in. I look at them when it's reading club.
When I was at Primary school I fell asleep on my brailler with my spellings on top of the brailler, when I fell asleep I had my spellings that were on top of the brailler on my forehead. The Perkins brailler was a bit strange because of the clanking sounds. It was like playing a drum but I was writing.  I can read the same as my class on guided reading.
  At school I have mobility lessons where I can go out to places. I went to the bus station and I found Braille on the pillars to tell me what bay I was at. When I went in the lifts they had Braille on the buttons to tell me what floor I could go to and a voice telling me ‘doors open’, ‘door closed’.  I have noticed recently that medicines had Braille and other cleaning products like bleach have Braille on them.
Also on dust bins they have got Braille to tell you what colours they are and what you can put in them.
 Some of the places I would like to have Braille are cash machines even though I haven’t used one yet I think it would be useful for me when I am older. More public places like museums, I would like Braille in these places so I can get more information, without people having to tell me what it is I am looking at. When I was practising going up and down in lifts we went up and down that much that my teaching assistant felt sick that she had to meet me at the top floor. When I go to the restaurant ‘Whistling Goose’ I would like Braille menus so that I can read independently without my Mam and Dad having to read the menu to me. I am growing up and should be able to order my food.
I would like Braille on shop signs to tell me what isle I am down or where things are and how much things cost. I read Braille in double line spaced so that I can read my Braille with my sausage fingers because my hands are so huge.  I love my fingers just because I am blind I still have my four senses like my hearing, smelling, tasting and touching and feeling.
When I was young learning Braille was very difficult and it made me really tired that I remember once I fell asleep on the cello so my teacher and my TA had to take the cello and the bow off me before it fell on the floor.
  In my school there is only me and my TA who read and write Braille. We did a Braille awareness day to teach everyone Braille.  We used Perkins braillers, raised dots and tactile pictures.  Everyone enjoyed it but they said how hard it was and how clever I was for being able to reading and write Braille.
 My memories of learning Braille is that once I ended up brailling on my sister's homework because I enjoyed brailling so much I would Braille on every piece of paper, I got into big trouble!
Without Braille I wouldn't be able to read anything or come to school and learn anything.  Braille allows me to be included in class. In English lessons we have read Gangster Granny, Mr Stink and Skellig everyone else had a normal print book but I have them in Braille, they were 7 volumes long.  Braille makes me part of my class even though they write in pen but I can still write in Braille.  Because of the Braille I feel like I am a part of the school community I am not mad because I am blind because I have a fabulous life a wonderful family and nice friends.
 When I bought my keyboard I had some music lessons to help me with the notes I had Braille on the keys.
At school I am a school councillor I went to meeting to talk to head teachers about what our school was going to do in the community. I did a presentation to 12 Head teachers all my notes were in Braille and they were very impressed with my reading skills. I also met a man who is involved in the City of Culture Hull 2017. He was talking to us about what we will see during the City of Culture year. I put me hand up and said What about me? I am blind what can you do for me? I am now involved in the City of Culture. I am telling them what would be good for Visually Impaired people which will include Braille signs, Braille information packs, tactile models etc. I wouldn’t have had this opportunity if I were not Visually Impaired.

Another view of the life of a 15 year old, only this young man has no vision whatsoever.
Makes you think doesn't it .....

Thursday, 2 June 2016

Picture heavy post lol

I took my lovely pal Mary, over from Australia, to the old RAF Hemswell site which is in Lincolnshire and has its guard room and 4 of the classic built H blocks turned over to antique selling.

Mind you since last I was there, parts of the camp have deteriorated into burnt out cars but the H blocks provide ex forces folks with nostalgic walks down corridors with Ablution and Ironing Rooms lol

Here's some of the bits that took my eye, stairs like these I ran up, often stumbled down and crawled up tiddly when younger lol

Beautifuly soft quilt, hand stitched too

The above quilt was also hand stitched, the below one probably a commercially made one but I did like the way the fabrics were placed with blocks of crochet included too.

Doesn't this look comfy to snuggle behind your back!
LOL velveteen fabric for dresses - so last century!

Beautifully stitched this lady


I loved this old bakers table but at £350 it stayed where it was -
I did buy myself a 2nd hand book, stunning pics and poetry about the Brontes, many of the poems by others, but about them.
Mary ( in red) perusing .....
Oh and I have  finish - Jacks Allosaurus, he chose the colours himself, it is two shades of grey