Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Vessel number two

Tonight I finished my second vessel. This one is made with artists canvas. I prefer the vessel made with vilene as the stitching bedded in better, but hubby likes this one and wants me to keep it, though a colleague at work has also expressed an interest in it. It goes well with my peacock feathers.

Today, Alan got the results from his biopsy, and it is basal cell carcinoma (skin cancer) we now have to wait to get an appointment at Basildon hospital to find out how they are going to treat it.
School inspection is going on and every one is stressed. I am so glad that we had our Early Years inspection the other week.

Monday, 28 September 2009

I woke up today feeling below par,and because it is inspection week for the rest of the school, I had to work late to cover for some senior staff. So, I am going to have an early night, (electric blanket on as I type) then I can be back on top form tomorrow.

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Where did the weekend go?

Yesterday it was an early start for our first meeting of the new 'school' year at Cottenham. Margaret form Schoolhouse Arts has joined the group as well as three other ladies. Unfortunately two of them couldn't make it yesterday. There was lots of discussions on our new theme for next years exhibition in Maldon.
Nickie, Margaret, Bonnie and myself left the group early so that we could go to the the ERTF exhibition in Cambridge as it was their final day.(Nickie and I havent got round to joining this group yet, but we have talked about it alot. Their meetings have always clashed with Schoolhouse Arts. Will have to see if we are allowed to join) Unfortunately photos weren't allowed, but lots of lovely work. Liz Holiday was very generous with information on how she constructed her book, and I shall get to see it again when she comes to speak at our Guild next April. It was lovely to see the work of so many that people I know.Though the morning had been very cold and dull, it was beautiful sunshine by 4pm. as you can see by the photo. ( Nickie and Bonnie in the pic below)

I mounted my stitching of Twiggy onto a canvas box frame to take with me yesterday, but it had a very small mark on it, so painted it with Dyna Flo paints. I preferred it when it was black and white!

Today as well as making banana bread and sticky ginger cake, I have been working on a mixed media canvas for Jimi Hendrix and Woodstock. Purple, cerise and turquoise tissue paper torn and stuck on. I then stencilled some spirals with moulding paste and letters stuck on. Two coats of purple acrylic wash were applied. Its now ready for stitching. I have also cut out another vessel the same shape as before but a bit larger. So what to do tonight- stitch on the JH canvas, more beading on number 2 vessel, stick my samples in my sketch book or work on vessel 3. Too many choices.

Friday, 25 September 2009


I have just finished getting my bits together, ready for the early start to Cottenham, it seems a long time since our last meeting.
I have finished constructing my second vessel and I have started to bead along the top edge.
After I get back from Cottenham. I am off to a party, so I wont be starting on vessel three, so hopefully it will be Sunday.

Wednesday, 23 September 2009

Talking Threads programme

Tonight is the first night since I have been back at school that I have got home before 5.30, so I had to hem Kezzy's trousers ready for Air Cadets tomorrow night YUK, YUK, YUK!!!!!!!! (couldn't put the job off any longer)
Just as I was about to start messing about in my play room, one of Alan's friends popped round for a cup of tea and a chat. He dropped his motorbike on his foot and the gear lever went through his foot about eight weeks ago, he is now off his crutches but going stir crazy being at home all that time.
Rhodri spends some of his spare time fishing and had bought a tool box for all his fishy bits, but as it was not up to the job, so he gave it to me. After putting all my tools away in my new tool box I have painted some craft vilene with emulsion in readiness for my next vessel.
On October 14th Talking Threads will be on MYChannel Sky 171 or www.countrychannel.com. it is the textile programme I have mentioned before and has Textile artists such as Angie Hughes, Fay Maxwell and Myfanwy Hart on it.
Off to do some more stitching on my second vessel, just another couple of inches to stitch on the final side. Depending on how long tomorrow nights meeting at Kezzy's school goes on for, I might be able to start beading the top.

Monday, 21 September 2009

As promised

The photo's at last of my vessel. I used the Carn pottery as my inspiration. I have almost finished constructing a second vessel, but as I have been out tonight and out again Thursday and Friday night, I wont be getting very far with it this week.
Tonight at Embroiderers' Guild, Delia Pusey( a member of East and 4x4) came with her fantastic collection of bags and purses. She has been collecting them for about twenty years. I have never seen such a personal collection!

On Saturday Nickie and I are off to Cottenham and Fen Edge Textiles, we are hoping to leave a bit earlier so that we can get into Cambridge to go to the final day of ERTF exhibition.

Sunday, 20 September 2009

At last!

I have been busy preparing food ready for our visitors tomorrow. Prepared all the desserts(tiramsu, scrumptious slice and baked cheesecake), made a ginger cake and rocky road for afternoon tea and all the vegetables are ready. I did nearly seven hours babysitting this afternoon, so when I finally escaped from the kitchen at 11pm tonight I spent my time sewing the beads along the remaining edge of my vessel. I will post photos of it tomorrow night, as I am getting too many shadows with all the artificial lights.

Friday, 18 September 2009

My weekend has now started :0)

It is now 10.40 as I sit here typing my blog, and it has been a very long day in a very long week. Into school very early each day and home, very late each night. (and I am NOT doing ANY school work this weekend!) Tonight, after eventually leaving work I went to do my weekly shop, but ended up going to two supermarkets, as I couldn't get everything I needed in the first. We have got Alan's family coming for the day on Sunday, and tomorrow I shall be out babysitting for one of my parents who are going to a wedding in Watford. So I shall be up early to start the food preparations for Sunday before getting to their house at lunchtime.
Anyway, inspection is over, we now have to wait for the rest of the school to have their inspection, to get the report. This means I can now get back to my sewing- YIPHEEEEE!!!!!!
On Monday it is Embroiderers' Guild and we have got Delia Pusey coming to our Guild with her collection of bags.

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

A few more grey hairs!

Another very looooong day at school, dotting the i's and crossing the t's ready for our inspection tomorrow. After a very late meal and helping Kezzy with homework, I wont be stitching many beads tonight!
I had a text to say that my grandson Zac was sent home from hospital late this afternoon, and when I got home from work I spoke to my daughter. He is on the mend but needs to keep taking calpol to keep his temperature down.
Hubby had to go to the doctors today to have a biopsy on his head. He was in a car accident about five years ago, and his head was cut in the impact. It has never healed properly, anyway after lots of nagging he has now done something about it. The doctor says it is either due to the sun that it is not healing properly or it is skin cancer. We now have to wait for the results.
Tomorrow night it is the monthly scrapbooking get together, we eat lots of chocolate have a good natter and hopefully produce a page for the scrapbook.

Tuesday, 15 September 2009

Inspite of a very loooooong school day, I was within sight of finishing my vessel tonight, but Kezzy has had a lot of trouble with her homework tonight. So, sewing needle put aside as, Alan supervised her art homework, while I have surfed for information on how drugs affect the central nervous system, I have learnt a lot. As it now too late for her to do anything with my research, it will have to be done tomorrow. Also while surfing, I have been waiting for news on my youngest grandson, Zac,who collapsed and was rushed to hospital at lunchtime. The latest, is that is seems to be a virus, he is being kept in hospital overnight, and depending on the results of some tests, as to whether or not he will be home tomorrow.

Monday, 14 September 2009

Just a quickie

A busy evening so far. As soon as I finished work I had to go to a former parents house as I am babysitting most of Saturday for her. Then back home and once everyone had been fed and watered I then cut out 100 apples in card for my 'cherubs' to use for a sticking/maths activity. Then a long phone call to Barclay's to find out why I couldn't spend MY money on Saturday. They have apparently changed my card and forgotten to tell me AND also forgotten to send me a new one. Oh well, a way of saving I suppose! Now I am off to do some more beading on my vessel.

Sunday, 13 September 2009


I was in the garden this morning with my secateurs, as I decided to trim some of the shrubs that are taking over one of the borders. Accident number 1 occurred, when I tried to squash the trimmings into the dustbin and lost my balance, and ended up, flat on my back. My wrist was tender at the time but it is OK now thank goodness, for an awful moment I thought I wouldn't be stitching for a few days. My back is a little tender but not enough to slow me down.
Accident number 2- I then had to drive my daughter to her friends house,and as I went to give my hubby a kiss goodbye he dropped the secateurs he was using on my foot- ouchhh!!!!! some blood but nothing to worry about. When I got back from dropping daughter off, I offered to help him paint the deck. For some reason he banned me from the garden. So got on with some housework and schoolwork.
I have just finished watching Tweed on BBC 4,(8pm) what lovely fabrics and scenery. I hope that the weavers continue to be able to produce their wonderful fabrics, I shall have to wait until next week to find out.

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Not a very good start to my weekend.

I normally go to Asda straight after work on a Friday, and when I get home and everything is put away, that is when I start my weekend. But yesterday, I had meetings all afternoon and didn't finish work until 6.30. So it was a fish and chips from the chippy and I then sorted out all my baseline assessments.
I couldn't do my food shopping last night as I had to get some cheap plastic toy boxes for my class from Poundstretcher, so it was an early start and off to Basildon. First stop- Hobbycraft where I found two bargains the Medieval book was only 95 pence and the batik book was reduced from £20 to £2.69. I then popped into a charity shop where I found the Celtic design source book for £1.25, by then I was feeling my usual happy self.
At the Works, I managed to get my calender for next year. I have had these Images of Africa calenders for the last 4 or 5 years, as I love the work by the artist Tilly Willis. I have used one of her paintings as a design source when I was doing my C&G and I keep promising myself I will re-visit her work and do something else with one of her images.

I bought this lovely chrysanthemum to put on my sons headstone as well. I wish I had got some for the garden, it is so pretty.

The church has lovely views over Essex, being situated on the top of a hill, and so peaceful.

I pottered in my garden dead heading and weeding the bottom garden, tomorrow I need to continue working on the borders near the house. Alan has started to paint one of our decks and will carry on with this and hopefully do the other one before he goes back to work on Monday for a rest.
Just one side of my vessel to stitch before I start to bead the top edge and post photos.

Thursday, 10 September 2009

A change of dates.

We had an OFSTED inspection July 2008 ( we got 3 outstanding's) and we were then told we would be having another inspection this September by ISA, as we are an Independent school. The date the whole school has been working to is 28th September( one of the reasons our summer holiday was shorter this year!). Today we had a phone call to say that the Early Years are being inspected next Thursday and Friday. We shall be very busy getting our new children 'house trained' by next week. After School club starts next week as well- I shall be very busy:(

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Drowning our back to work blues.

As work has been exceptionally hard with a certain little boy not settling in, we went to the pub last night. I am not a pub goer, but I really enjoyed it- something different I suppose.
I spoke to my Great Aunt and she had a wonderful birthday, she has got 20 cards decorating her room.
I received confirmation today, that Leslie Morgan will be a speaker at our EG Regional Day. YIPHEEEEE!!!!!
Now going to do some work on my vessel, the end is in sight, I hope to complete it this week all being well, and I will then post photo's.

Sunday, 6 September 2009

An early celebration.

There was a lot of slow traffic on the roads to Norwich today, tractors, caravans etc., but never mind,I had a lovely day with my Aunt. All though she is saving her cards and pressies until Tuesday, (her Birthday) we had the cake today. I only put on two candles on her cake, as I said to her, if I put the other 100, the chocolate would melt. LOL. I managed the journey home in two hours, much better!
Alan took Kezzy to Duxford to the 'Flying Legends' Airshow. They had a good time and saw lots of WW2 planes so they were very :).
Since I got home, I have frozen another 2lbs of home grown runner beans and made some playdough for work tomorrow. Now I need to go and get something sorted out, so that I can do some hand stitching on for my tea breaks

Not achieving very much

You would not believe how hard it has been to find a replacement wooden back door for our kitchen, it desperately needs replacing before winter sets in. We have been looking for some time, B & Q, Focus, Homebase. So today we went to Wicks, where Alan was sure we would find what we wanted. No such luck!. On our way home we stopped at a local garden centre and they had a unit selling doors. Guess what, they had hardwood doors and we had a choice of two. So our new stable door should be here in about ten days time.
Job number 1- My Grandson starts school next week, I cant believe how quickly he has grown up. Sam, my oldest daughter, hates sewing and asked me to put his name on his PE bag so it would be easy for him to find. Job number 2- I have also made a card for my Great Aunty Doris who is going to be 102 on Tuesday. As I am back at work, I am going to Norwich to visit her, tomorrow . As she is unable to see, I have tried to put lots of touchy feely bits on the card. This will be the first birthday she has had without her sister, it will be very hard for her. I am taking up a cake, for her to share with her carers.
I also made prawn pooris for our evening meal- a family favourite.

Thursday, 3 September 2009

First day back.

Not a good start to our new term, one little boy cried and screamed all morning and could not be distracted. When he was picked up at lunch time we were told that he had NEVER been left before. No wonder he wasn't very happy. In spite of that, the rest of the children settled in really well.
Tonight it has been a Embroiderers' Guild Committee meeting and I have now typed up the minutes and emailed them off. We have got Lynda Monk AKA purple missus coming to give a talk next year. I shall look forward to that!
Tomorrow, we have the local paper coming in to take photo's of my cherub's.

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

Full on.

Lots of meetings and chasing companies for books that staff had forgotten to order. As the computer that is linked to the printer decided it was not going to work, I had some final bits of school work to do this evening. I now need some therapy- off to do some stitching.
Tomorrow, all my new little cherubs (three year olds) will be arriving for the first day of their school life.

Tuesday, 1 September 2009

Dye experiment number 2

I have finished making my new caterpillar number line and my bags are packed ready for tomorrow. My first staff meeting is at 9.00am- Child protection, followed by at least three more that will take up most of the day-deep joy!!!!!! This was a piece of calico I stitched while at my mothers in a shibori pattern. I was going to dye it a traditional blue BUT, I wanted to have another go with natural dyes, this time using turmeric.(No mordant used)
I used 2 teaspoons of turmeric in a little bit of water to make a 'sauce', (same as making custard.) I added it to, two pints of cold water. Added fabric and threads, bought it to the boil, simmered for 5 minutes. Left it to 'cure' for 6 hours and then rinsed out.

The colours remind me of the Harrie Krishna's that I used to see everyday in the early 70's when I worked in Debenham and Freebody in Wigmore Street.

The fabrics used top to bottom:-
srim and the threads again, top to bottom
viscose ribbon.
And here is my Shibori, I now want to stitch another pattern when I go to my Mother's in October.