Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Still Alive.

Hi everybody. I just wanted to let you know that I'm not dead. Nor have I joined the circus, or a cult, or the French Foreign Legion. Nor, contrary to what you may have heard, do I have a new boyfriend, and, especially, I have not gotten back together with my ex boyfriend. Really.

Actually, the reason that I haven't been posting anything is because, quite simply, I haven't been sewing anything. Until before a couple of nights ago, my sewing for the last month or so had consisted entirely of me hemming jeans and adding ribbons to kids sized shirts to be waist ties. Kids sized shirts aren't that flattering to the waistline.

A couple of nights ago though I remembered that it was only a couple of days till christmas, and more to the point I realised that, even after buying pretty much every single red and green checked fabric in the Mount, that I at no point had bought the right one to make myself a replica of the stocking from the the season 3 Community christmas episode, but then I realised that that it didn't matter because the pink and green on-point-check from the DS range (I think) before last that was chilling in my stash was kinda perfect in every way except that it was pink instead if red, but whatever, no-one cares. So I made a couple of stockings in the fandom-y spirit.



Not that anyone really gets it. But for those who do, yes, they are big enough to wear as a hat.

And then, of course, yesterday, I realised that I knew exactly what to make a couple of my friends for christmas, but, in pretty much the story of my life, I had like 5 hours to make them all.



First up I made another stocking for EmmStaff. It's ever so slightly smaller than the green ones, and she forgot to come in and get it in time for christmas, so Annalise and Hamish held it up tonight after work while I took a photo after work. But it's made with some Birds Of Norway fabric (it's a Kaufman from a few years ago) and it's one of the most innately cool fabrics I've ever bought, without at any point giving away the fact that it knows it's an innately cool fabric. Which pretty much sums up Emm => very cool, doesn't realise it yet, and cause it's not actually a christmas fabric, and because she turns 18 in eight days, she's gunna use it as a birthday stocking.

And then I also made some tumblr things into plushies. And didn't take photos. Annalise took a photo of hers though: a pair of plusies comprising the message icon and the notification icon.


I made two of the other girls plushies too, I just need to wait for them to put them on the internets. In th meantime, happy christmas everyone, from me and the 6 ciders I drank earlier.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Puh-ride.


So over the weekend the kidlets got to go to a big dinner thingie and get their award from the mayor for the pageant. Tonight when I got home I noticed this next to Graham's bowls. I think he deserves it.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Life choices: Validated.

My mum said to me a few weeks ago (I think it was when I was churning out the adorbs halloween animal ears) "why can't you and your father use your powers for good instead of evil?"

However, all my life choices were validated when ABC local radio's Stan Thompson said that he was particularly impressed by my dinosaur dog costume, as worn by Graham in the local Christmas Pageant on Saturday.


Admittedly, in all the photos it looks like there's a stuffed toy dinosaur trying to hump him. I'm gunna say that it's my retaliation for all those times when he's humped my leg. Powers For Evil!

Anyway, The Bedrock Kids float won the "encouragement award" and made it into the paper. There were 5 copies of The Border Watch in our kitchen tonight when I got home... one on each of the 4 tables, and one in my hand as I walked in.


Honestly, encouraging us isn't that good of an idea. With no encouragement at all my father built a four-bike-powered Flintstones car on a whim and I managed to design, draft and construct a perfect doggie-dino costume in an evening. Admittedly, I did need a bit of encouragement to help with the kids costumes, but that was because mum assembled them and then wanted me to sew the spots and triangles on them. And she always wanted me to do it in the mid-morning, instead of at 2am like I normally would.

And she's got the nerve to call me evil. I think it's not only my father that I get that from...

Monday, November 12, 2012

Story of my life.

This week I altered a dress for a friend for her 18th birthday this weekend. Then on friday night I sewed myself a gorgeous navy blue cowl-neck sheath dress to wear out with her.

Unfortunately we got a bit carried away with the celebrating and the drinking and forgot to take any photos :(

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

It's working... *cries*

 

Two weeks ago, a man from telstra called my mum and told her that he could upgrade her internet plan. We were going to be getting 500gig of internet a month, at higher speeds, and a bonus free wireless dongle to use if we were away from home.

What we actually got was a 75 hour internet dropout and a new, separate phone bill for $30p/month for the wifi dongle. Data usage not included.

I've spent the last 3 days either on the phone to tech support or waiting for them to call me back. Someone today finally told us that the upgrade was actually a cancellation of the old plan and a commencement of a new one, so all our usernames and passwords were different, and that got us back online for all of 10 minutes (basically, enough to say thankyou so very much, we love you, bye and for it to die again) before the modem went aargh, I can't cope with ADSL2+ I don't wanna and gave up.

Tonight I borrowed a modem from Steven and smashed the keyboard until it took pity on me and worked. I tearfully hugged my mother and she went to bed (it was 3am by this point. She was working at the pub tonight) and I moved it all to my room and smashed the keyboard again until it all started working down here as well.


I'm so over tech support. And I still don't know what a DNS is, or why it was so hard for all these things to find it, but I don't care right now.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Happy Halloween.

It was so nice to come home tonight and not have to make anything. I think I was so excited by the fact that I could just spend the night on facebook and tumblr and youtube that I got a bit carried away, which is why it's now 5.30am.

Anyway...

A cool cat, a cow and little red riding hood. All made by me.
A cool cat and a cow holding tails, and getting photobombed by the boy who couldn't be arsed doing a costume, so we made him wear teddy bear ears.


The ears of the cow... she didn't wear them because they kept flopping over her eyes.

Group piccie.
As much as I was sooooo sick of working on this stuff by last night, I'm also so glad I did it. Only two of the daytime staff did anything, and only two of the people in this photo (the witch and the bloodsplattered guy) aren't wearing at least a little something I made. But we had a fantastic night, got quite a few compliments (a couple were skeezy, but they were balanced out by the adorable ones from little kids) and generally enjoyed ourselves.

The fact that I can now, still, 7 hours on, still feel the ghosts of the sunglasses/headband combo pressing against the sides of my head seems like a small price to pay.

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

And it's over...

As of 10 hours from now (8 hours of which will be spent sleeping) my holidays are over. Sad times, though, admittedly, considering it was only 5 days off, short times too.

I've spent most of the last 5 days sewing costumes for Halloween, from a whole heap of ears:


To a truly bitchin' Red Riding Hood cloak, that I don't even get to wear because I agreed to do it for Chantelle.


And a cow print onsie that's given me a lot of trouble because it's for someone who's a completely different size to me. And that doesn't matter with animal ears or badass crepe georgette (why did I pick that fabric? It was horrible to work with) cloaks. But on me, the crotch is almost down to my knees, and the legs are waaay too long, which stopped me from putting feet on it like she wanted. I've put some buttonholes at the ends of the legs though, so I can make her some button on feet later.






And a half dozen boring black capes that I'll probably insist management wear, since I like the idea that they can be the villains of the piece. I'm still going with being a cool cat. Brittni (who we often call Britta) is going to be one too, so I think that means that halfway through the shift I need to get myself some white wings and a halo and be the cool cat that had too many drugs.

Hopefully I'll meet some more Community fans in the process. The world needs more cool cats.

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Me ow.

The distinct advantage that quilting has over dressmaking is that the photographs, and therefore the bloggage, are a whole lot easier. But, as ever, I'm busy being too obsessed with my wardrobe to quilt. And too crap at taking selfies to logically explain the last few days worth of sewing. Also, I just realised it's 5am, which would explain why I can't words.

...Anyway. I'm still very into Community, and Britta, with my spirit wardrobe, was wearing a denim jacket with grey fleece sleeves and a hood. I still had a denim jacket in my cupboard that had survived every round of salvo-ing purely for the reason that I felt it was important that I still owned at least one, even though I haven't worn it in at least two years, due to a strong fear of coming off too double-denim-y. And I'd rather die than come off double-denim-y. But last weekend I dyed a pair of my skinny jeans black, and that means I can wear a light blue denim at the top without looking at all matchy-matchy. So I chopped out the sleeves and drafted myself a hood design and the only grey heavyweight fleece they had at Spotlight was kinda weird fluffy on one side, slightly silky on the other and it was $13p/m but hey, I wanted a denim jacket with grey fitted sleeves and a hood and I wanted it by the next day. And I did it, and I had it, and it's bitchin, and it's nice to know that after two years of just chilling in the cupboard, it's going to go back into rotation.

As well as this, it's Halloween on Wednesday. Now, for the most part, I'm very opposed to having Halloween in Australia. Good on the Americans, it seems like a lot of fun, but when it's done in Australia it comes off as a Valentines-Day-esque grab for the consumer dollar. On the other hand, we don't get to do enough fancy dress, and Wednesdays are (sadly) not really drinking days (though admittedly, I drank this Wednesday) so the initial plan for a fancy dress drinking party got canned. But there was vague mention of Woolies going fancy dress for the day and I'm pushing for it. I want this. I want costumes at work day, to the point that I have drafted a onesie pattern to make for one of the girls at work in cow print. I want this to the point that I bought 5 metres of black cotton lawn from the $1 clearance rack at spotlight to bulk churn out some capes. I want this to the point that I've offered to make some animal ear headbands, because animal-ears are a traditional lazy-person's costume.





Hey look, teddy-bear ears. And my newly altered jacket. Twofer selfie! I'm actually still wearing these, four hours later. I think when I get up tomorrow I might put them on and pretend like they're not even there, just to see people's reactions. I think they are adorbs, and plan on mauling the faces off anyone who disagrees, just like a real bear in a badass re-purposed jacket would.

But, keeping with the theme of wanting more of Britta's wardrobe, my personal animal ears option is the "cool cats" from season 2.





My sunnies are a bit different and my leather jacket is out in the car, and also on this first version they're a bit too big, but I'm sure I can pop them on someone's head. I need another cool cat to be cool with me.


The handy thing about making these is that I'm sewing the ears onto the headbands by hand, and you can still watch TV while you're handsewing.

DVD commentaries, come at me.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Oh My God!






I used a ruler and a rotary cutter and a mat to cut up some actual quilting cotton today. Granted, it was two rectangles to make a pencil case for Maddy, that I said I was gunna make 3 days ago, but whatever. This is a massive achievement.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

It was time for a new TV obsession...

So I'm obsessed with Community, in love with Jeff, and Britta is not only my new spirit animal*, but she also has what I think of as my spirit wardrobe. Lots and lots of fitted check shirts, leather jackets and dark skinny jeans.

Anyway, since I have a whole lot of telly to watch now and Lincraft coincidentally has a lot of their yarns half price, I did some crocheting.


I may switch back to knitting. I prefer the smooth finish of stocking stitch, and I like the edge finish better too.

*I have a lot of spirit animals. Caitlin Moran, Lou Brealey, Taylor Swift My Car (as opposed to the actual Taylor Swift) and EmmStaff, who is my real life spirit animal and the person who told me I should move Community up to the top of my to-watch list. There are others too, I just can't remember them right this second. Spirit animals are a Tumblr thing, it's kinda like saying "when I grow up I wanna be..." but more concise.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Buh Bye...

Remember a couple of months ago when I lost my voice completely for 12 days? It's going again.

I wonder how long for this time?

Saturday, October 13, 2012

I love coats.

Apart from the obvious stuff like having to do buttonholes and getting a nice corner on the tips of the collar, I think it's a lot more difficult to significantly alter a coat than make one from scratch.

It all started Saturday night on our very quick party trip to Adelaide. There was a boy, (as is so often the case) wearing a quite dapper coat. I love a good coat, so naturally I ended up doing dancefloor things with him. Turned out the coat wasn't his though, he'd just found it earlier in the evening, which meant getting it was a simple matter of giving him my number. Didn't even have to do anything inappropriate :)

Still, even though he said it was a bit too small for him, a men's medium is quite a bit too large for my size 8. So last night I chopped it up and tonight I made a start on putting it back together.

Taking down a shirt is fairly easy, even when they've annoyingly flatlocked the side seams, because it doesn't have a lining. This coat is fully lined but I've given up on keeping the lining perfect, because it's all gotten a bit... complicated. I've lowered the seam of the shoulder but raised the set of the top of the sleeve. I've taken in the underside of the sleeve and in the sides but the underarm was still too low so I've had to add in a bust dart to make the sleeve hole small enough. So the lining's way bigger than the shell, and the shape of the sleeve hole is terribly wonky and the lining doesn't match it. I'm just going to tack it all together and zigzag the crap out of the inside of the set-in sleeve.

But it's 5am so it won't be finished tonight, not that I need it in any real rush, but it's nice to know that I can do it. It's easier making one from scratch though, since you can make a muslin and test it all out.

Speaking of coats made from scratch, today I found some gold... something-or-other on the clearance rack at spotlight so I can make a rockstar coat to match what instagram came up with. And they have solid coloured rayons now! I didn't buy any because they weren't on sale and, well, I've had other sewing lined up, but I'm happy about it nonetheless.

I think I need better things to get excited about.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

I wish so hard that it was real...

So a couple of weeks ago, for reasons that now escape my memory, it came up at work that I knew one of my co-workers credit card details off by heart. Obviously, a couple of the girls at front end immediatelly decided we should use them for something, and an epic international holiday was decided on. Over the course of the rest of the shift, this hypothetical holiday was hashed out, attendees decided apon and dates chosen. There's about ten of us. I say "about" because we have been arbitrarily uninviting and adding people as we see fit.

We left for our hypothetical holiday yesterday morning.

First up is 4 days in New Zealand. We arrived at Mt Hutt last night and spent today skiing. Tomorrow we are going to try snowboarding. Then we are flying to the north island, because I want to visit Hobbiton. That's what we're doing Thursday, and then Thursday afternoon we're doing a tandem bungee jump. Annalise, Emily and I are agreed that this is very important, (so important it may actually become a real life - albeit more local, thing) and we want as many of our co-travellers to join in as possible. Brenton has to, we have decided. It's his credit-card we're using, so that's only fair.

Friday morning we are flying to Hawaii. I picked Hawaii, mainly because Shay was there at the time, and I was jealous. I haven't made any hypothetical plans for Hawaii yet, though I believe it has been decided that we shall learn to surf. I claimed my plan was to start drinking on the plane and not sober up till we landed back in Melbourne. That was before I was quite ill on Sunday, so I have postponed my drinking till we reach Hawaii, at which point, mimosas: come at me. Nonetheless I have hypothetically sourced some lovely south island red wines.

I had though it would be fun to photoshop our faces onto pictures of people standing in the snow but Google has been rudely unforthcoming with the kind of starter images I need for that. If there's something worse than finding out that your plans for a huge international holiday on a friends credit card can't follow through because said card only has a $1000 limit, it's finding out that you can't even fake the holiday in a fun way for facebook.

Actually, no the fact that I'm not actually on the trip of a lifetime right now is worse.

If anyone wants me, I'll be on ebay, buying myself some souvenirs, while I sit here in bed eating crumbed parmesan from the jar...

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Random bad habits I really need to get under control #78: making out with randoms on the dance floor that I have no intention of getting with :/

Friday, October 5, 2012

llol. with two ls.

So all of a sudden it was 3am and I realised I hadn't started Thirsty Thursdaying yet. But there was a bottle of double strength summerberry cider in the fridge, and I have a box of cruskits. So that's good. Progress is good.

Anyway, I found this earlier, and it gave me literal lols.

  A teenage boy is getting ready to take his girlfriend to the prom. First he goes to rent a tux, but there’s a long tux line at the shop and it takes forever.
    Next, he has to get some flowers, so he heads over to the florist and there’s a huge flower line there. He waits forever but eventually gets the flowers.
    Then he heads out to rent a limo. Unfortunately, there’s a large limo line at the rental office, but he’s patient and gets the job done.
    Finally, the day of the prom comes. The two are dancing happily and his girlfriend is having a great time. When the song is over, she asks him to get her some punch, so he heads over to the punch table and there’s no punchline...

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Arty Artness.

Ah, long weekends. The perfect opportunity to get seriously stuck into working on some of your long-neglected WIPs.

Unless of course you're like me, in which case you work all three days as well as drinking on two of them.

And I was kinda happy, because this weekend was intended to be our last hurrah until the show, which is 4 weeks away, meaning that we would have some time to recover. Then I remembered that I agreed to go to Adelaide with Casey and Jeffy for reasons I'm not entirely sure of. Probably mainly to do with Chinese food, which I've just realised I get to eat in 4 days time. Now I'm keen.

As for stuff that I've been making, well, I did some Sherlock Texts From Last Night for the Tumblrverse. Does that count? I used mspaint...

P.S. Lets not talk about the footy. I'm still too full of feels.

Friday, September 28, 2012

Getting high, every night, with every single, every loving girl in sight...

Someone pointed out to me the other day how silly it is that they're called "roofies" when they make you fall on the floor. Nonetheless, Kelsie's Free Candy and Roofie Lexia party is tomorrow night, so while Casey was working on a pedo-van cake, I decided to make some roofies.

Now, obviously, they're not actual date-rape roofies. This isn't Breaking Bad, it's an 18th birthday party. But my original plan, which was to just give everybody Splenda tablets, was derailed by the fact that artificial sweeteners taste like shit. So I needed something else. And I decided I wanted them to be nice and obvious - both obviously there and also obviously not-actual-roofies.

Solution - basically tiny, tiny pavlovas. Beat a whole lot of icing sugar into an egg white, pipe out little pellets onto some baking paper, put another piece of baking paper on top, bake it as low as the oven will go for 5 minutes, and voila - roofies.



Some of them got a bit burnt, but they still taste fine. And about 5 times as many as are here (that's a 125ml tub, about half full) decided to sortof implode as they were cooking, so they got et already. And I made another batch where I didn't put the second piece of paper on the top, hoping that that would reduce the implosions. It did, but since their tops weren't flattened out they look kinda droplet-shaped. Still, much like the ones that imploded, they're still a delicious sugar hit.

For the record, the don't dissolve, and they float. This, combined with the fact that they give you a sugar high as opposed to causing anterograde amnesia means that anyone hoping to actually date-rape someone is going to be hugely disappointed. The effect they have is more like that time we went around one high-school lunchtime with a box of sugar cubes and a heap of those sugar-sachet-sticks. Everyone's gunna get super excited and then need a lie down.

Well, it's an 18th party, they'll be doing that anyway.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

How I spend my nights

Juuuust throwing a tantrum at etsy at 4.30 in the morning because it keeps giving me cotton knits when I'm looking for woven rayon fabrics.

Because that's how I roll. (The tantrums at websites thing, not the constant need for more nice drapey rayon fabrics to make into lovely flowwy skirts now that the weather's starting to get a wee bit nicer. Okay, that too.)

Monday, September 24, 2012

And so say I.

Caitlin Moran's new book Moranthology is out. I haven't found a hardcopy locally yet (unsurprisingly) but after an epic battle with the Google Play app on my phone it graciously took my $15.99 and let me read it.

And that's why I did nothing this weekend. Maybe. I also drank so much that I can't remember most of the rest of this weekend, but I'm sure that's a random, uncorrelated coincidence.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Little victories

Four hours ago I thought to myself, "I might have an early night tonight..."

Clearly, I didn't, but I fixed Casey's pants for her, so I'm still declaring tonight to be a rousing success.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Weirdly, getting laryngitis the other week has improved my singing voice.

Almost inevitably, whenever I write up a long comment to an instagram picture, the net drops out while it's uploading and I end up having to re-type it. Fortunately, even though the net dropped out three times while I was trying to upload this photo, it eventually got there.


This jacket was actually made out of a 99c polar fleece blankie I got from the salvos. It’s a pale beige, scragly, badly sewn test jacket I made to work out where the zipper would sit. But instagram makes it look like it should be worn by a fucking rock star. Now I wanna go buy some gold lamé and make one like this one…
Since I want to make this jacket in some nicer (read: more expensive) fabrics than just polar fleeces, I'd also like for them to have zip closures. And while zips are easy in bags (since they're all on straight edges) on a jacket they're a bit tougher. Especially when that jacket hasn't actually been designed to have a zipper closure. Plus, since the faux-leather won't really be able to be pinned, I wanted to try sewing it without pinning. So I got a cheap polar fleece (quite thin polar fleece, admittedly) blanket from the Salvos because it wouldn't matter if it all turned crap, and had a go. It worked well for the most part, but I'm pretty sure it's impossible to do a set-in sleeve without at least a little bit of pinning - I did it with 4 pins and was super-proud of myself.

I'll re-draft the front so that the zipper will go inside of a seam and since I'll be lining them the outer zip will go in a lot neater too.

Does anyone know where I can get some pale gold suiting weight stretch sateen? I wanna be a rock star.

Monday, September 17, 2012

So there's this tag on tumblr: "Coat Porn"

Tonight while I was watching Sherlock I realised that the wrong side of the fabric I used to make the very first version of the draped collar jacket would be a pretty much perfect match for the epic trench coat he wears in the show. So now I'm obsessed with finding the perfect trench coat pattern, even though I'm still yet to make the draped front jacket in either the faux leather or the caramel wool I've bought for them.

What's more, it won't be long until the weather starts to warm up, so I've got a pretty narrow window in which to find a pattern, refine the pattern, make a coat and wear it before summer gets here. That's why I spent a good couple of hours on etsy and the rest of the internet tonight looking at vintage patterns. I got a bit carried away, and ended up buying about six of them. Hopefully one of them will be okay.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

My saturday night.

So my little sister, who's nine, by the way, doesn't really ever sleep on her own. Ever since she was tiny she slept with mum and dad, and now that she's bigger, she'll sleep with mum if she's home or Casey or dad if mum's at work.

She and mum and dad have been on holiday for a fortnight, and mum drove them back from Adelaide this afternoon. Apparently, Maddy slept in the car the whole way home. Which meant tonight, as one by one everyone else in the house fell asleep, Maddy kept on shifting beds. And since I was the last one still awake, she ended up in mine, watching 2 Broke Girls while I fartarsed around on the laptop. She was fairly sure she was ready to pull her first all nighter, right up untill 5.05 am when she informed me that she was ready to go to sleep now.

I'm not very good at sharing a bed with someone. Especially not a nine year old with a tendency to kick you in the face as she sleeps. So I'm on the couch.

I should just pull an all nighter. But honestly, tonight was the first night in ages when I thought to myself at about 2 am that I was ready for bed. But it was full of gangly pre-tween and bad sitcom, so I waited.

I should have just gotten drunk...

Thursday, September 13, 2012

I need to cut back.






Since I've been spending *cough* about 4 hours a day on tumblr lately, I got to thinking about how my blog would be different if it was there.

Obviously, tumblr's a very picture-heavy place and I'm not much of a picture person. Small, cluttered bedrooms and an almost entirely nocturnal existence (afternoons, when I'm at work, obviously don't count) don't make for a whole lot of good photos. And quilts don't work well as gifs, static, 2D things they are.

I think my thoughts better in words or numbers but I like seeing other people's thoughts and ideas as visuals. I could happily read a million words but pictures (and even more so, gifs) make things so much more fun.

And the love... Oh, the love. I love to love the love. I love shipping stuff and going down with this ship and mashing two people's names together once they're a couple (My car, Taylor, just got a boyfriend, Harry... Tarry! My OTP*!)

I love the confessions posts and I especially love all the Texts From Last Night posts. I love feels and saying "right in the feels" and "I don't know what my feels are feeling."

On the other hand, tumblr is just a whole lot of people posting other people's stuff. For the most part, it's little more than a handy aggregation service, and even though people are pretty good about linking back, so much of it is the same stuff over and over and over. The fact that blogger/wordpress/livejournal aren't re-bloggable is something that I'm glad of. There's a lot of fantastic original content on tumblr, but, with the exception of a few shitty content thieves, pretty much everything in the quilting/sewing/crafting blogosphere is original content.

Speaking of original content, I haven't been making much of anything lately (a four hour a day tumblr habit being a big contributing factor there) So I'm gunna ease up on posting here every day. I've got other blogs to post non-crafty stuff on, so I'm not gunna force myself to write filler. I think it'd be better off for everyone if I put that effort into forcing myself to sew.

*Actually, I think my OTP (One True Pairing) is probably my last car, BJ (a Ford Mondeo), and his then-girlfriend Vroom (a Ford Laser, basically the next size model down). They were together for two years, Vroom's owner working similar shifts to me at Woolies. We would park them next to one another and talk about how one day they might have a little navy blue (they both were) Ka (the supercompact). This was before Tumblr though, so they didn't have a mashup name.

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Songs about Rain...

So it's 12 days into spring and the weather just can't seem to make up its mind. We've had lovely sunny days, gloomy skies, gentle breezes, gale force winds and huge downpours. But that's pretty typical of the mount. You sort of have to ignore the weather, except to constantly complain about it. Just because today was nice doesn't mean tomorrow will be.

And a weird thing happens inside homes and buildings... Generally the opposite of what's going on outside. In our house, through the winter, it'll often be in the high 20s*, because we'll have the fire going. At work, whenever the sun's shining outside, they overcompensate by turning the aircon on too high.

Tonight, after a sunny and dry but still chilly day, I came home and put on rainymood. It in no way, shape or form compares to actual rain on my actual tin roof, but I'm having a night in which I feel that a bit of ambiancic rain sounds are necessary.

I've just realised we haven't had any epic thunderstorms here in a while. Please, changeable Mount Gambier weather, can I have some of them soon?

*according to the internet, this means it would be about 80f.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Come at me, Carbs.

Why do they call the spaghetti that takes 8 minutes to cook "instant" spaghetti? That's not instant, that's eight minutes. There's 8 minutes of difference there. And when you want carbs NOW, 8 minutes is a lifetime. A lifetime in which I eat a whole lot of parmesan cheese. When I cook myself spaghetti, I cook less than a normal person would, not because I have the stomach capacity of a small child, but because I ruin my appetite on fake powdered cheese beforehand. But it's important that I have the real fake parmesan cheese, the Kraft one. Someone filled one of the real jars with the cheap stuff and thought I wouldn't notice. But the other day I was staring in the cupboard and there was a jar of cheese there and I had some and it was all wrong. So I knew today that I had to buy more, thankfully. Having fake fake cheese would have ruined my night completely.

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Weekend

Before having an arguably ridiculously big night last night, yesterday I went into Spotlight's Quilt Expo that they were having. I'd taken in a half dozen quilts for them to display, to help get out word that it was going on, and probably a quarter of the quilts they had there were mine. I got there pretty late because I was up till 8am having a spontaneous bedroom cleaning spree, and really, I don't need to be taught how to make a block. But they had all dress fabrics at 30% off, and I wanted to buy some pleather to do a dressier version of my jacket, but I didn't really want to pay $23 a metre. I'll have to try to do it without pinning it, but I figure the fabric won't stretch or shift as much as fleece does.

Today I spent being hungover and watching True Blood. Tonight I am having an early night.

Saturday, September 8, 2012

A decision (or two)

I don't know why I only ever get the urge to clean my room in the middle of the night, but I'd like to say this: the sun gets up waaaay to early. It's light outside. That's not okay with me. I think in future I should be consulted.

Anyway. It's 6am. It's been a long day/night (though clearly not long enough?) so it feels like a long time ago when I picked what to wear tomorrow (tonight?).


The skirt was a dress that had a bodice for someone boobier than me, so I just chopped it off. The top is what I mad a couple of weeks ago for the fluro party and ended up wearing for about 20 minutes with a pair of jeans, before taking it off in favour of rednecking it in a white tank top. I need to sort out some shoes, but I figure I'll just go buy a cheap pair from Kmart.

Friday, September 7, 2012

This is hard.

The Awesome Blitz is on this weekend. It's a big retro themed party that they hold at Dirty Shads these days - last time I went, years ago, it was at a big out of town place called The Barn. But it moved a few years ago, and now I'm worried that it might cramp my weekend somewhat. I know plenty of people who are going, but it could get in the way of the natural progression of the night for us, which is The G, then Shads, then Maccas.

The problem, of course, is the outfit. A retro party needs a retro outfit. I have my fabulous vintage sequined christmas present, but I don't know that the evening will live up to the dress. Also, I only own cowboy boots, nothing go-go boot-y. I could go something a lot more 80s, but I really don't know what. I'd made a decision for what to wear in a general sense, based mainly around my gorgeous new cowboy boots, which I'm thinking were totally worth the $150, and the price of which makes it okay that I'd be wearing a $15 dress.

Is there some kind of magical outfit that I can wear with knee-high black cowboy boots and black tights, that will make my ex-boyfriend feel a bit regretful, look normal at The G and like a costume at Shads? And can I sort it out in the few hours before work tomorrow evening?

Thursday, September 6, 2012

If I have to...

Obligation craft is such a weird thing isn't it? Lets be honest, we don't sew because we have to, and if we did have to, we probably wouldn't want to any more.

The main reason I make stuff, I think (and actually, it's the reason I do most things) is curiosity. I either want to see if I can, or want to see how well I can. I have terrible vision in my mind's eye, so if want to see how a quilt will look, I have to make it. That also explains why I dislike binding. It is obligation sewing. It is a necessary evil that gets you to the bit where you can put a quilt in the washing machine and have it come out all crinkly.

Hems are pretty much the epitome of obligation sewing. I can't be the only one who hears the question "hey, you sew don't you?" and immediately thinks great, hems... before they've even asked it. It's interesting to note that most people I will shoot down without any guilt whatsoever (because, hems...) but a friend that has agreed to give you a waxing appointment at 11 at night, you're quite happy to. But then, she said she thinks I'm like the Hulk, cause I don't even flinch when she's doing that bit of the underarm that really hurts.  All part of why I love her I guess. There needs to be love, to willingly do hems.

Tassels on scarves need a fair bit of love too, especially on a red and white scarf, as a Hawthorn supporter. Of course, it might not be a Swans scarf (Hi, number two on the ladder, having fun down there?) it might be for a Where's Wally costume. Though I find it hard to believe that a woman who's been knitting for 80 odd years doesn't know how to put tassels on a scarf.

On the other hand, Nana Joy's probably spent the last 80 years deflecting requests to take up hems in favour of knitting blankets, like she wants to. So no doubt she's also an expert at delegating that last little dull bit. When I grow up, I want to be just like her.

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

So, this happened...

Tonight I went looking for stripey fabric, found a really old demo Kindle and pulled it apart with a butter knife. I found it very interesting, but I realise that such antics are not particularly good blog fodder. Also, I cut my finger. Not like, bad, but it hurts. Kinda like a paper cut, but on the inside of a Kindle.

That's only fair, I guess, since I was prising out it's innards with a kitchen utensil.

Monday, September 3, 2012

You Guys...

Guess what everybody! I've had too much to drink. On a Monday/Sunday night. Brenton was drinking so I figured it was okay for me to drink. And I've spent the evening chatting with my ex on facebook. Why the hell not?

...

You guys, I'm really drunk. I've agreed to a True Blood marathon of season 5 with my ex boyfriend this weekend, and, even worse, I'm looking forward to it.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

The Plan

The plan for tonight was to finish work at 10.30, go to the gym and come home home to try to have an early night. I start at 12 tomorrow, and that's early for me. But I forgot my headphones, and EmmStaff, who is one of the most gorgeous, tall, athletic, pretty, smart, funny, insecure 17 year olds I know, was going to try to sneak into The G underage, and wanted me to come with her. And because I adore her even though I really should hate her, I agreed. It was her best friend's 18th and that was going till midnight and I figured that would give me time to finish the half-sewn olive green version of my fantastic jacket.

Long story short, she got in, we danced, I had two drinks, there was some country boys in there, I decided I'd have a crack if the opportunity presented itself, it did, I've got it even in town, and then I ninja'd away to take Emm home, and came home myself. It's no later than I would have been up anyway, I had a fun evening with a different crew, and it was a good reason to finish off my jacket, which I'd be procrastinating on for no apparent reason.

What's more, because there's no-one else up this end of the house, I figure'd I'd have a go at getting a picture of it, since the dark green's probably easier to photograph than black.






I think what this picture best shows is that my fingers are freakishly long, and that the bathroom mirror really needs a clean.





When all else fails, sit on the floor in the passageway with the tall mirror leaning on someones door and take wonky photos, and wait for instagram to fix them.

Thanks instagram.

Saturday, September 1, 2012

Whoops

Earlier tonight I randomly picked a whole heap of games for mum's new tablet. And we could say that I sent the last 4 hours thoroughly testing their suitability, checking that they ran okay without too much lag or bugginess, and turning off all the annoying music and sounds. And while that would be true, it would be more accurate to say I got distracted flinging marbles at one another, exploding little blobs of goo and joining rainbow pipes together, and lost track of time.

Thankfully, I made the case first... But I forgot to take a photo, and it's too nice here in bed to get out and go and get it.

Friday, August 31, 2012

Tablet sleeve test

Mum, Dad and Maddy are off to Bali on holiday in a few days, and Mum bought herself a tablet to take with her, which arrived a couple of days ago. Tonight, I had a go at making it a sleeve, and I'd have a go at an idea I had a while back for a zip down handle, which could make it be a bag too.


The zip curves around the entire top of the bag, and only the bottom side of the zipper is sewn for the whole length, while the top zipper is attached at either edge.


I like the idea. But I've realised that the top curve in particular warps the body of the sleeve a bit too much fr me to be satisfied with, so next time I'll do it with two short zips so they only curve one way, and only in the middle of the bag as opposed to on the corners, where it's more noticeable.


Also, as usually when I make a sleeve for a piece of technology, it's ever so slightly too small. It fits, but barely, and it makes the edges where the closure zip is (I could only find one pink zip) stick out weirdly.


And now I'm off to play the moustache drinking game. Happy Thirsty Thursday everyone

:{P

Thursday, August 30, 2012

Genius.

Today at work, I saw a lady wearing skinny trackies. It was a revelation. Trackies fabric, skinny jeans cut. How genius. I have tracky fabric, it's what I've been making my jackets out of. I have a pair of skinny jeans that were in too bad a condition to give to the salvos, or I did until I chopped them up for a pattern tonight. I haven't actually made them yet, because the big bad internet got in the way, but I have hopes. They are on my tomorrow to-do list, along with not drowning in the puddles in the yard. It's been a bit moist out tonight.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Shame

I've spent the past few days waiting for the urge to clean out my closet to hit. I've known it was about to arrive since mid last week, though I couldn't tell you how or why. I just knew that I was about ready to do it, and that when it was going to happen, it would.

Tonight it happened. I was going to make a start on the back of the striped lattice quilt, using more of the blue as well as the 9cm strips of striped fabric I'd cut way more than necessary of for the binding. But then I couldn't find said strips, and bam! Suddenly it hits, and I'm pulling everything out and trying it on to see if I should keep it or not.

I accumulate clothes like something else that accumulates a whole lot of things without noticing it. I cant think of a good simile for that one, so I'll say this: every time I clean out my cupboard, I can fill at least two big garbage bags worth of clothes and shoes to give to the salvos. Without realising it, I end up with a couple of dozen pairs of jeans, and twice that in shirts, and then all my piles topple over, because I'm not very good at folding things that aren't quilt fabric.

And even though I feel bad that I have so freaking much stuff, I don't know if it's okay for me to be ashamed (because oh boy am I a victim of capitalist consumerism) when I'm giving all this stuff to charity. Not to mention the fact that probably half of it came from the Salvos to begin with - I think the fact that it's so cheap there is a big part of how I manage to accumulate so much.

Maybe the Salvos should be ashamed?

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

#shameless

Mentally, whenever I am talking to myself, I preface it with "You guuuuys..." and I have no idea why. I kinda hate myself for it, but on the other hand, I love it. On that note...

You Guuuuys, someone made the perfect tumblr for meeeee....

http://acollectionofwellbehavedbeards.tumblr.com/

I think the name says it all, really.


Monday, August 27, 2012

Wait, what?

Tonight I found myself only wearing one sock, after I got an itchy foot a couple of hours ago and took my sock off to scratch it. I hadn't realised how long it'd been - I must have done it all the time a couple of years ago, since I named my blog after my tendency to end the evening wearing only one sock. I'm not sure why it's not happening much any more, except possibly that my heels are a bit more callused these days, and maybe that helps them grip socks better.

What's more I've passed both 2 years of blogging and 850 posts without noticing. In much the same way, it's already the wee small hours of Monday morning and my weekend is all gone.

How did that happen?


Sunday, August 26, 2012

So there...

I've done a pretty good job with the clothes, haven't I? Not to toot my own horn or anything, but I'm quite happy with what I've done in the past few days. I've got my coat perfect (and I can wear it to the gym after I wore it out on the town) and I made a fluro drapey top with some unknown fabric that had sat in my cupboard for years, and still had tags on it from the salvos, so I figure it probably sat in someone else's cupboard even longer. The fact that I took it off after 10 minutes isn't the point - I was just feeling like rednecking in my white tank top and jeans tonight as opposed to dressing like a wanker in a fluro top.

Seriously, fluro? A party where the theme is fluro is a good idea? Did we learn nothing from the 80s? I suppose most of the people at the fluro party weren't there for the 80s. Most of them didn't come till halfway through the 90s.

I wanted to smack some of them in the head. And then set fire to them. Instead, I came home and played in the dark with a ball made of glow sticks. Because I'm a grown up, and I can do that if I want.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Can I have fridayitis? Is that a thing?

Today I took a couple of quilts into Spotlight because they're having a big quilting day in a couple of weeks and wanted people to bring in quilts to display. I think they may be having a competition as well, but they asked if I would bring in a few to get them started, so other people would know to bring in theirs. I took the green pavement quilt and the bluegrey quilt for starters, since they're both fairly big and both made mainly from fabrics from Spotlight. I showed them a picture of Carried Away and they said they wanted me to bring it in even thought it's really small, but it's a bit busy being loved by me right now. But I might wash and take in Sunset and the first blue and green quilt too, since they're just hanging about.

While I was in there I bought some Arctic fleece, which must be the next one up from the Husky I had been using, since it's $1.50 more. If I'm honest, I like the Husky a lot better - it's thinner but it has nice drape and it's easier to pin and it looks less "fleecy" if that makes any sense: the only reason I got the arctic was that there was some decent colours other than black - Husky only had really bright colours or prints. Tonight I made a red jacket, but I did a frankly terrible job of the back, and I'm starting to get a scissor blister on my thumb, which is probably a sign I should get back to quilting. But I've got a bottle green jacket and a sort of stone/puce/really pale brown jacket to make first.

I may need a bandaid.

It's not much yet, but in maybe a jacket and a half it will be bad.

Friday, August 24, 2012

Pattern Progress

I think a big part of why I don't like to pay much for patterns is that before long I have completely mutated the pattern into something else. I'll start with the pattern, redraft every piece over the course of a version or two, and end up with something completely different from what I bought.

Today I decided that I'd have a go at making the jacket without a lining. Spotlight has put all their polar fleece down by half price so I got 4 metres of black husky at $3 a metre, and the pattern changing began. Step one - merge a couple of pieces. The front as back are both comprised of two bits, and since it's draping instead of fitted I decided to make the front all one piece. And since it's draping down, I decided I'd raise the front hemline and give it a bigger collar too, so it had more to drape, but not as far to drape it.

The polar fleece worked pretty well, I just sewed each seam twice, about 3mm apart, and then trimmed close to the second one. Did a really basic folded hem - these are just test runs for wearing on daggy days around the house, so they're far from prefect. But I did a decent job, since even though they're just tests, they still take a whole lot of time and effort, and I can still use them even in their imperfection.


The original design (and this changed one) had a seam for the collar on the front edge in the middle of the drape. I didn't love that, so on the next run I decided to make the front and the collar one piece, meaning that the side front piece had to return. I tried making the back one piece instead but ended up adding some darts once it was finished anyway. I like the drape of this one much better, but I also raised the back where the collar is, and I forgot to lower the shoulder to compensate. I've changed the pattern piece, and added the darts to the piece for the back, so I should have a perfect version tomorrow.

I envy those people who can re-cut their own work to get it to hang right, but I'm not one of those people. Still, for $12 I got two jackets and enough left over to make most of a third, plus, knowledge!

PS, if it is perfect, I'm gunna make about a dozen of them for myself. This polar fleece is comfy and super warm.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Because it is already after 5am, and there are still tumblrs that need to be read...

Today there was sunshine. It was terribly strange, but then, I have barely talked for 11 days now, so my very existence has started to go a bit weird. I find myself regularly going and laying in odd places, staring at the light fittings or the bit where the door meets the roof, just because, as a person who is made up of words, and who has no words, life is weird. Also, did I mention it's 5.30am? Just as well I have no voice and got my shift replaced for tomorrow.

Back to the point, it was sunny today, and I went into work late (they'll let you be in charge with no voice, but not actually serve the customers) so I had time to go out and take some pretty pictures.


This quilt is so unlike all my other quilts that I almost love it the most, because it's so unashamed to let it's freak flag fly.


This is the holiday quilt, hand quilted by me, while I was high on the glue fumes from spray basting together, in a motel room in Adelaide, the layers of pre-pieced plaid, pink polar fleece (batting) and wool coating (backing). And I hand sewed on the binding too, which is actually woven polyester tape.


This is the Carried Away Miniquilt. Some point soon I want to re-do this in the solids I originally designed this to be in, and as a nine-patch.


The block itself is what I came up with for the GenQ block design competition, and since the magazine is out now, I think I can do my excited squeally they picked it!


This is the original colours. I only had enough to make this one block, which got turned into a cushion, which was promptly stolen by Casey, and then by Maddy. I also made a really hideous one, in a selection of other new DS fabrics, that I tentatively titled when bad things happen to good fabrics.


Naturally, one of the girls at worth thought it was kinda funky when I showed her the photo, so I've quilted it ready to eventually turn it into a cushion for her.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Grrr

The power going out has put a serious cramp in my night. I had plans man, and sure, I probably would have ended up playing bubble breaker all night instead of actually following through on them, but now even the chance has gone, and I feel robbed, man, robbed.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

#Shameless

So I've been thinking about maybe having myself a Shameless Saturday this weekend. Not that it would entail any of the kinds of things one might think something called Shameless Saturday should entail, on account of the fact that I still have only the barest of voices and a tendency to explode into an asthma attack as soon as I get too warm/cold/thirsty/horizontal - no, my Shameless Saturday would be a facebook thing, where, just like I did with First World Problems Night, I'd post a status of something I have no shame about every hour or so.

Stuff like:

Just spent 3 hours looking at cute animals on BuzzFeed. #shameless
 
Sniper bid yet another dress I don't need from someone who probably really wanted it on ebay. #shameless

I bulk buy huge amounts of chocolate when it's cheap and hide it from my family. #shameless

Haven't cleaned out my handbag since I bought it. #shameless

I mainly watch True Blood for the nudity. But only because the plots this season have been so ridiculous. #shameless


Or, here's some ones about sewing:

Sometimes, I quilt with polyester thread. #shameless

I hardly ever trim my blocks. #shameless #lazy

I never follow the instructions on a dressmaking pattern. #shameless

I don't press my seams, I iron them. #shameless

I sew over my pins. #shameless #hardcore

All of this was, of course, inspired by someone tweeting "Leg hair don't care" which is the kind of brilliant succinctity I wish I could master. I've spent a whole blog post wishing I could sum myself up in 4 words or less. #irony

Monday, August 20, 2012

Another jacket, that I'm slightly less excited about.

Because I spent all day wearing my bitchin new jacket, Maddy decided she wanted one. The pattern was a misses sized one and I used the biggest for me so while I was at Spotlight getting some press studs I got some tracing paper and Mum picked an embroidered denim for the outside and a pale blue drill for the inside, and I came home and traced the smallest size. She thought the arms on mine were too narrow (they are a bit tight when you fully bend your elbows) so they got widened too, and after stopping for a couple of hours to watch The A-Team, I finished it off.


She tried the lining on for size before she went to bed and that fit okay, so hopefully she likes it when she gets up in the morning. I didn't put press studs on it (we can do that later when I know where she wants them) but I made her a belt with the leftover bit so she can tie it closed till then.

Sunday, August 19, 2012

My new favourite.

So a while back I bought this pattern off the Vogue website along with a whole heap of others that were $3 each.



The reason I picked this one is because it has a whole lot of collar and really slim sleeves, which is what I've been looking for in a jacket. I had already found it actually, but they were asking $95 for it, and it's not even real leather. I'd pay twice that if it was real leather, but it isn't, so I'd consider my budget to be half that.


And tonight, since my voice is still hiding behind a couch somewhere and my asthma is playing up to the point where I chickened out of going to Longy Bns even though I wasn't working, I decided I'd make the night at least slightly worthwhile and have a go at the pattern. I had some dark grey wool/acrylic blend medium weight coat fabric that I bought so long ago that it was in a cupboard in Becky's room and some quite thin black cotton for lining and I went for it. I skipped the pockets, since this was pretty much just a test run, slimmed the sleeves way down (even though the pattern said they had to be made from at least 10%+ stretch fabric) and decided I'd line the entire thing instead of facing the front and the collar in the same fabric as the outer and then having a part lining.

Of course, I completely disregarded the instructions. I've never made a pattern exactly as it says to, ever. It's not that I think I know better than people whose actual job it is to know this stuff, but I've got my ways that I'm used to, so I lined it in what I think of as "handbag style" because it's how you line handbags: basically you make two the same, one in inside fabric and one in outside fabric, and then you sew around the edges and turn it inside out and topstitch the edges. Of course, the ends of the sleeves are a bit more complicated than that (you sort of pull them out of the inside once you're half done and then turn them inside out again and... it's complicated...) but it all came together great. Narrow sleeves, massive collar that doesn't really have any bulk and therefore drapes nicely, full lining so it doesn't scratch your underarms when you're wearing a singlet... I hated having to take it off to take a photo of it, but I suck so bad at selfies it had to be done.


And that coathanger just doesn't wear it as well as I do. It's pinned closed here since I didn't have any press studs to put a closure on it but I'll happily wear it open for now.

Now I want to find myself some waxed cotton drill and do another one.

Saturday, August 18, 2012

ZOMG!

Not only did I finish quilting AND bind the quilt I was working on last night, I also improv pieced another whole quilt top!


It's mainly a bundle of 30cm cuts of Groove from Robert Kaufman that I got for $10 a metre at Stitch and Knit a while back, with another Kaufman (Iota) and a stripe that I bought the other week in Adelaide thrown in. I decided that what I didn't want to do was stand around for 2 hours ironing and cutting all my bits, making me bored with the project before I'd even started, so I cut a half dozen 10cm squares from each fabric, as well as a 7cm and a 10cm strip, and a few random other rectangles. And then I sewed, and sewed, and ironed, and sewed, and cut some more bits, and sewed some more, ironed and trimmed a little, and sewed and kept on going till there was a quilt top there.

Actually, I lie, about halfway through I stopped and got KFC. There was nothing else to eat.

Anyway, it's about 110 by 140, judging solely on the 33cm lino squares underneath. I've no idea what to back it with, nothing in the stash is suitable which is a shame, and even once it is backed I've no idea how to quilt it.

Still, it was a nice different thing to do to (hopefully) kick start me into sewing again.

Friday, August 17, 2012

Finding the bright side in the dark.

I've found the best thing about laryngitis. It's going out into the kitchen, in the middle of the night, wearing headphones, not turning any lights on, having a groove in the dark, singing along at the top of your lungs to your mp3 player.

No-one can hear you! It's brilliant! It's like being home alone, but, we'll I'd say it happens less rarely, but this is the first time I've ever had laryngitis, whereas I've been home alone plenty of times, so there goes that theory. Oh well, it happened tonight, and I was loving it sick. That's the important thing.

Anyway, before I was being Bruce Springsteen, I actually got a little bit of quilting done, just boring wavy lines, but yay progress. Until the bobbin ran out, and I stopped. Because clearly, my sewing machine wanted me to.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

I hereby declare Wednesday to be non sequitur day!


Today I decided I would sit outside for an hour. I did, I finished a book, and I made a point of breathing in and out quite hard. It didn't really help with anything, but I felt better for having done it. Having asthma and a nose that doesn't really work very well I don't consider myself to be particularly good at breathing, and I'm an inside/nighttime person too so I don't get much fresh air either. By Mt Gambian winter standards the weather today was quite nice, and since I'm still off work, I figured I'd go for it.

The nice doctor man made me wait for 40 minutes and pay him $60 so that he could tell me that I do actually have laryngitis, and to give me a piece of paper that made a giant robot pharmacist poop out a little bottle of pills for me. Apparently my voice should be back by Saturday, which means I have to go back to work on Saturday.

I'll probably be crazy by then. Weirdly, even my inner monologue appears to have lost it's voice. I'm talking to myself, mentally, soooo much less than I normally do. I'm freaking myself out with the awkward silences between me and me.

I appear to be quite badly allergic to shar-pei fur. A friend had hers out tonight and I ended up with a rash all up my forearms when I carried it to the car. Sucks, cause it's cute as.

Mixed Berry Mini-Wheats are a huge disappointment. I lived on the Strawberry ones in year 12, but they got discontinued and I had to switch to blackberry. The mixed berry ones only just showed up at our store, and I was toats excited, but the flavour is a bit too... If I say warm, that makes no sense. The blackberry flavour is sharper and stronger. The mixed berry one reminds me of juice that's been out of the fridge too long. It let me down.

It's hard to find graph paper this time of year, and Maddy "borrowed" most of my stash, leaving me none with which to design a nicely balanced wrapped-candy block, or calculate sweet, sweet maths to make it.


I had a go with some lined paper and a pencil, but I think the centre box needs to be a bit bigger - I don't want it to go all the way to the edge though, possibly if I had half sized squares I'd go to the next one out. And I don't know how to assemble it yet, or what colours to use. Graph paper is magical, and it would have the answers for me.

I need to find some graph paper.

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Blah Blah Basting

The problem with basting is that, much like being sick, it's boring and uninteresting and no-one cares.

Still, it's the first crafting I've done in ages, with the exception of the statistical anomaly that was the holiday quilt, and I figure it's a good place to start. Spotlight had 30% off today so I got myself some batting, and a 108cm wide quilt can handily be backed by a single width of quilt fabric. Of course, I have no idea how I'm going to quilt it, since it's a very odd design that really needs an all-over free motioning, but, um, I still can't do that. I even gave it another quick try today, and I've got the shapes down pat, and my stitches don't vary too much in length, but the tension on the back is still utterly utterly horrible, and I'm still too cheap or lazy or both to get it serviced. I might end up doing wavy lines in both directions à la the pavement quilts, since that looks like an all-over while actually being a side to side, but, baby steps.

And on the voice thing, it's baby steps on that too. I have some vowel sounds. This is progress. I'd probably make more progress if I didn't keep going in to work, but they keep guilt-tripping me. Tonight I did reversion - basically taking down all the old specials tickets so new ones can go up tomorrow. I answered any customer queries with obscure hand gestures and interpretative dance. I hope one of them was a mystery shopper, because I'd love to read their review of my silent service.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

... continued

As predicted, today was no-voice Monday. But getting up at 12 for a 1.30 start and finding the house empty meant I couldn't get anyone to call in sick for me and I couldn't do it myself either (obviously) so I just had to go on in. Since I went home sick on Friday the first thing everyone asked was if I was feeling better, to which my response was, (again, obviously) "..."

Actually, I said, "Yes, I do, thanks, but, um, well..." but what came out was "..." with some lip movement. Unfortunately they were a bit understaffed so I ended up hanging about till 5.30 anyway, mainly doing self serve (I can mouth "thanks a lot, see you later" with such conviction that people's brains insert the words) or smokeshop (people usually know how much their smokes are going to cost them) or supervising (though someone put on their help light and I went to help but they were still talking to their customer and I was trying and trying to get her ask her what was wrong and she was ignoring me and eventually another supervisor came up and helped her and I sulked away unnoticed) but we all agreed that I couldn't really supervise tonight because I couldn't talk to customers or answer the phone or make calls over the PA system, so really all I'd be doing is bumming about as all my employees amused themselves by saying "what?" at me over and over again. So instead, I came home, so my family could do exactly the same thing to me.

And I watched the first episode of Big Brother (and probably the only one, since I work nights and don't get to watch real* telly) and the new episode of True Blood (bye Molly and Hoyt... sad face) and spent a whole lot of time on etsy looking for the perfect fabric to make this top and being saddened by the fact that they've already got pretty much the perfect fabric. Gods of perfect plaids, why have you forsaken me?

Oh, and gods of voice, you too? At least the gods of finding a good car space still like me.

*Admittedly, Big Brother isn't reall telly anyway, but I mean stuff that our antenna picks up in real time, as opposed to stuff I download and watch

Monday, August 13, 2012

...

To say that I have no voice is a slight overstatement; I'm currently audible on about one of every five words. But thats a rate low enough that, should it continue tomorrow, I probably won't be able to work, even though I'm starting to feel a bit better. It's the best kind of sick day really. Who doesn't love a day of sitting quietly?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

It's a linkathon!

I'm getting kinda used to this whole feeling like crap thing now, but it's getting incredibly boring. So I went into town today, but after 5 minutes in Spotlight I was completely buggered and went back to my car for a sit down. I guess that's the most of it now; coughing, with a whole heap of lethargy.

So, what's a girl to do with her complete lack of energy but audition tumblrs to go onto her dashboard?

I've mentioned before that I hesitated on getting a tumblr until instagram forced me to. So much of tumblr is just the work of others endlessly reposted and I'd much prefer hang out where the content is user-generated. So I only followed three blogs, textfromdog, which I've mentioned numerous times and believe to be utter, utter genius, hungoverowls, which, for me at least, is insanely relateable, and truebloodsims, where someone has recreated the characters from True Blood in Sims2, and gets them to do amusing things.

But, for whatever reason, if you're not following at least four tumblrs, it shows random posts on your dashboard. And sometimes they're interesting, but other times they're weird and/or depressing, so I figured I'd better round out my fill, and a night with no energy to to anything but lay about on my bed seemed like the perfect opportunity. A couple of best lists pointed me in the right direction, and I thought I'd share the couple I picked, since they're pretty damn awesome.

The first one is Animals Talking in AllCaps. As they say in their tagline, it's just what it sounds like. It's kinda like Walk on the Wildside but with photos instead of video. It can take a bit of getting used to reading allcaps, but once I did I read through about 30 pages of this.

The second is Dads are the Original Hipsters. Now, I love hipsters. If I was a city native, I would totally be a hipster. I love the Mullet:Hipster or Redneck flowchart, even though I possibly wouldn't go as far as a mullet, but I've always been resentful that my 20/20 vision means I can't wear cute glasses, and I love my skinny jeans, and flannelette shirts, obviously. What's more, there's dozens of photos of my dad I could submit to this site, since he spent the late 70s and 80s in a sea of lush, wavy hair, trucker caps, tight v-neck tees and stonewash denim. And he had a stunning mustache. But, as with Hungover Owls and Animals talking in AllCaps, it's the captions that really make this one. I think I might buy the book.

This though, I won't buy, since I can make one myself. A like oven mitt. Genius!


Friday, August 10, 2012

Small victories.

Today I threw off the guilt-trip-induced shackles of the frontend of Woolworths Mt Gambier, hugged a security sensor pole so I didn't fall over, gallantly talked myself out of throwing up twice in an hour, came home sick and built myself a blanket fort on the couch. I'm declaring this to be a victory, and a much needed one after I spent last night coughing up blood.

And now, from the comfort of my blanket fort, I'm gunna watch the leaves on the trees sparking in the sunshine outside, because the DVD player is too far away.

/startsulk

I am a sucker. More to the point, I am a sick sucker. Last night I spent 8 hours at work in horrible pain every time I tried to swallow, only to come home, have a shower, mumble something about dragons at my mother and pass out on the floor in front of the fire with the towel still wrapped around my wet hair. Then today (I wasn't supposed to be working, but they appear to have fucked up my roster this week) I worked 6 hours, coughing and spluttering and feeling pretty miserable. Tomorrow, also when I'm not supposed to be working, I've been rostered 10-3, which contravenes both my don't-work-fridays and my don't-work-before-lunchtime rules.

And, even though I have over 200 hours of sick leave accumulated, I go to work, I suffer through it, I share my germs with customers and I devote at least 40% of my concentration to mentally telling myself not to throw up over and over again. Because whenever I try to call in sick they get all passive aggressive; "but we don't have anyone else, wah wah" on me. And meanwhile, the department manager randomly takes a day off a month out of sickleave to "help keep the budget down"

Oh, and the best part? If I quit, I lose all that sick leave. Nearly four grand worth.

/endsulk.

In actual good news, the first issue of GenQ magazine arrived today with my bonus 8 kickstarter bribe fat quarters. Especially loving the brown and pink zigzag one.


Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Because adding a picture of your new fabric can perk up even the dullest of posts.

For the record, serblerghfnek isn't a real word, evidenced mainly by the fact that googling it only brings up yesterday's post. I'd like to say it was just me mashing random keys, but when I do that I always get something like neerjdfvjem and that's too many of the same letters. So I made a sound vocally that summed up how I was feeling and typed it out phonetically-ish.

Annoyingly, I'm still feeling somewhat serblerghfnekish. First day back at work, an excess of managers, a droppy-outy internet and a computer that is still being uncooperative. So, to stop this post from being a sea of glum random letters, here's the fabric I bought while I was in Adelaide.


Although the selection at Big W is an odd one (hell, it's odd that Big W even carries any fat quarters) it's usually pretty good quality fabric, and there's an occasional gem. Like a couple of Castle Peeps, and an adorable print of cotton spools that the internet tells me is a Robert Kaufman. And they were all only $2.85 each, but they are American sized, which is an annoyance.






These are from the various Spotlights I went to on Thursday and there's a few re-buys in there, both accidentally and because they were on special for the stash. A couple are intended for various things (the three bluey-aquas are to go into the bundle the last lot got added to) but others I just got cause I liked them.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

serblerghfnek.

An evening spent trying to install Windows and all it's associated important drivers and connections and programs and the thirteen-disk monstrosity that is the Sims2 suite has left my brain in a small pile of mush. Also, note the use of the word trying - it hasn't been a great success. Windows was fine, I've done it enough times now that I can do it in my sleep, but it's on a quite old computer, without a whole lot of power, and I'm not sure if the USB drives are all working or not, and I can't get the modem to work, and without that I'm struggling to do much of anything, since I need to hope I'm downloading the right thing when I get it on my laptop and obviously in places I'm not, because it's just not coming together. So I'm giving up and going to bed, since I have to go back to work tomorrow.

I finished hand sewing the binding to the holiday quilt though, so I did at least achieve something today.

Monday, August 6, 2012

The BnS Post - Stonerollers 2012

...

(That would be the pause I give when someone asks me how my weekend went.)


Well... (that would be the traditional beginning) It was awesome. I had been a bit worried for the last couple of weeks that a) the weather would be shit and b) that I would have hyped it up a bit too much in my brain, resulting in the inevitable dissapointment.

But, thankfully, wrong on both counts. Saturday morning we left a dreary grey sky'd Adelaide, and we took the curly mountain road (Eagle on the Hill) instead of going through the tunnel, and that was AMAZING. All Caps amazing. Pulling onto the the off-ramp from the freeway, going up the mountain, it got super-foggy. There was NO view. Just white. Curly, twisty roads, up and down hills, white either side of the road and visibility ahead of about 50 metres. It was like living a dream sequence. I considered doing a loop and having a second go, but Casey was driving her car ahead of me, and I wanted to keep convoy. But back on the freeway it all burnt off, and even though it wasn't exactly warm, it was nice in the sun.

There was a pretty big line at the gate, and we all decided that, obviously, we'd start drinking. But I accidentally got one of my strong ciders, and had 3 standard drinks in a half hour... by the time I actually got to pay for my ticket I was dying of indigestion and trying really hard to play it cool. One we were actually in I pulled back a bit, but I kept at it and didn't return to real sobriety till today.

The ball itself consisted of me dirty dancing with as many people as I possibly could and making out with a dozen guys. I stopped my actual alcohol drinking at midnight, which is a good plan if you don't want to wake up with a walking dead hangover, and got on with the all important picking up. I even managed to get about 4 hours of sleep.

Recovery today was almost more bonkers than last night, because I did it all again sober. More overambitious dancing, more boys, and a wet tshirt contest that was very much about the wet and not so much about the tshirts. They'd chopped them down but thankfully my boobs are small enough that they were still covered. No-one else's were, so I kept a shred of dignity by comparison and got my horrible sticky clumpy hair somewhat rinsed out.

We hung about till about 3pm, sitting in the afternoon sun at the campsites after recovery stopped at 1, then we eventually got mustered to go, got KFC and headed home.

Tonight, I faced the biggest challenge of the whole weekend - there wasn't enough hot water left when it came time for me to take my shower.

It was horrible.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Too Much?

How close to the end of a project will you stop? An hour of work left? Half an hour?

Of course, it's hard to know how long something's actually going to take. I have rounded (by about a centimetre) the last corner on the binding. I started it in the middle so there's probably less than 50cm to go, but I'm not sure how long it would actually take. And I'm ready for bed, so it can wait. It's not like I can't do it anywhere, right? Wasn't that the whole point?

Admittedly, I did kinda want to have washed it before I took it to Stonies, not just to (hopefully) crinkle it nicely, but mainly to get rid of the glue residue. When Casey and Jess got here tonight, the first thing they did was whinge that the room smelled a bit funny. I had meant to leave the window open today while I went shopping, but I forgot.

Nice little segue there: Shopping! Today I did a whole lotta op-shops, and thank god for my GPS. Yesterday I got from Parafield (mid north east) to Marion (mid south west) with no GPS, just to prove to myself that I could, but today I happily went wherever it told me too. I had to start in Port Adelaide since Dad needed me to get something for him from there, and I'd worked out a route that got me most of the stores down the west side of the city, all about 10 minutes or less apart. There was one I couldn't find, but I also found two surprise bonus St Vinnies stores and a Red Cross one too.

After 5pm I went to Rundle Mall because late night shopping in the city is on a Friday. And I bought some more stuff. A whole lot of it is basics - a half dozen each of bras, singlets and tees, to go with the four coats I've bought op-shopping, two ballgowns to stash (in January, for a friend's 18th, we're all wearing ballgowns to Dirty Shads, and these were $3 each, so the fact that they're to big for me was irrelevant) two kids rugby jumpers on end of season clearance, two long sleeve tops,  six printed tees, a checked shirt and a white jacket.


And the same shirt dress three times in two colours, because I really like it and it was only $10, and two handbags, and some DVDs, a few fat quarters, and a bit more booze too.

Because, like singlets, socks and fabric, you can never have too much booze.

Friday, August 3, 2012

The Impulsive, Handsewn Holiday Quilt

Last night, while I was watching weird movies, I was bummed that I didn't have anything to do while I was doing that, so today when I was wandering around shopping I tried to keep an eye out for some little crafty thing to do while I was bumming about my motel room. You know, crochet or something.



Instead, I found some pre-pieced fabric on the clearance racks of one of the spotlights for $4 a metre. And there was some coat fabric for $3 a metre. So I got them both (150cm of the pieced stuff, since that was the width of the coat fabric, and 110cm of the coat, since the pieced stuff was narrower) and I picked some woven tape for the binding, since I couldn't find any actual binding in a colour I liked, and anyway, since this'll be going to a BnS ball, I wanted it to be tough.

While caught in the after-school rush hour I thought about it some more, and figured that maybe I should get some spray baste. So I got some of that at the next Spotlight I went to, as well as some Husky fleece as batting. The three fabrics ($6, $3.30 and $5.50) came to less than the price of the spray baste ($15.95)

What does one choose as a soundtrack to getting high on glue fumes in a motel room, on your own, 500km from home?

Well, I went with Chasing Airplanes by Gary Allen, but then, right now, that's my go-to song for pretty much everything. And once it was all glued, I switched to a bit of Dierks Bentley. That's not a band name, that's what the guy's actually called. Also, he totally looks like Waz from The Block last year.

Amazingly, I got it all quilted in 2 1/2 hours, but then, I haven't done an award winning job or anything. Big chunky stitches on the diagonal through every second row. Double thickness variegated brown cotton, if you were wondering. It took me another hour to get a bit under a quarter of the binding done, but once again, the sewing is rubbish.


And then I devoted some time to trying on all the clothes that I bought today. Huzzah for late night shopping in the 'burbs; I managed to get a lot in cause I could keep shopping till 9pm. No pics though, cause I suck at selfies.