Saturday, June 30, 2012

If you insist, universe.

So lets say you had planned to spend the night making a pattern for a raincoat from one of your favourite hoodies, but then you couldn't find a tape measure. You'd be all "oh no, my night is ruined, I can't do this without a tape measure (sad face)"

But it's okay... I have the perfect solution...

Just spend the night looking at funny pictures on the internet instead. You know you want to. Take it as a sign from the universe. It wants you to do this. That's why it hid your tape measures.

Plus, Batdog.

Friday, June 29, 2012

Great? Great.

You know what's awesome? Rekorderlig fruit ciders. Well, having to type/pronounce the brand name is tough, but they're alcoholic deliciousness. I usually go with the Strawberry and Lime one. It tastes like warm strawberries, like a roadtrip to the strawberry farm in Portland and a $160 speeding fine. And they're $7 a bottle, so it's not to far off of that. And the Wild Berries one goes great with a Cherry Ripe. Which is great, because Cherry Ripes are great too.

And books. Books are great because even when you've had a couple, you can still read. Well, I can still read. I suppose it depends on how much, but I've not had so much that I can no longer read. But I've had enough that I can't really sew, or chochet, just now. So trashy romance novels (Molly Harper - love your work) cider and chocolate it is. Thursday nights are awesome.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Whoops.

Apparently these have some kind of special name, but all they are is two layers of puff pastry, cut into sticks (though there were two round ones in there; I think someone may have been making cheese tarts), brushed with milk, sprinkled with sugar and put in the oven for a bit.


And this tub was full when I got home from the gym about 3 hours ago. I feel ashamed. And quite bloated.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Yes, yes we do.


Do other people do this? As the crocheting gets longer, so it doesn’t get more and more twisted with every time you change direction, you roll it up and loop another bit of yarn through it.

If I were a biscuit, I wouldn't be in the sweet or savoury sections. I'd be in the section with the smart cookies :P

Okay, maybe smart cookies wouldn't stay up till 5am crocheting and watching DVD commentaries. But that's only because cookies are inanimate objects, without brains, and therefore have no concept of DVDs or commentaries. Smart is relative. And cookies are delicious. Even though this is Australia, and we call them biscuits.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

A sad, sad day.

Is it possible that there is some kind of peak physical quilting condition? That we are like athletes in training, only without commentators, or sponsors, but that we end up with something prettier than a medal at the end?

I only ask because tonight I did about 2 hours quilting, and was going to do more, but I was starting to ache. The ironing, the cutting, the chain piecing, it was all just making me sore, so I stopped half-done. It would appear that lounging around for the last week watching True Blood has left me badly out of quilting-shape.

Granted, it's one of the most complicated designs I've ever done, in terms of having quiltmaths even I struggle to understand and some very odd points, but I have to admit it. I got lazy. I lost my edge.

Either that, or I'm right about the new fridge being evil and sending out gamma rays to weaken my super-quilting-powers.

I don't trust that fridge. It's too white.

R.I.P. old fridge. I miss you.

Monday, June 25, 2012

Yay.

I have a disappointing lack of yellow in my stash. I didn't realise it till tonight, when I needed some. I found two nice yellows, that worked okay in my bundle, but I only had a fat quarter of one, and 30cm of the other. I chopped and changed my bundles, trying to make it work with one of the brighter yellows that I had enough of, but they all looked weird. I needed a dusky yellow, that wasn't too lemon-y. And I needed to be able to get sixteen 10cm squares and eight 15x17cm rectangles from it.


Eventually I found two matching straggly bits in my corner pile of random bits, and - Yay. It took a diagram for me to work it out, but you can get the bits I need from a 50cm square and a slightly-more-than-15cm strip. Hurrah for the quiltmaths :)

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Achievement?

For the first time since we upgraded to 200 gig of internet a month, about 6 months ago, I've actually hit my cap. 22 whole hours before it resets. I'm gunna have to spend all of tomorrow on 56kbps. It's both terribly first-world-problemy and an achievement I'm quietly proud of.

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Good.

One would assume, seeing as how I've watched THIRTY HOURS of True Blood since Sunday night, that I'd make that my favourite for this week. Or at the very least, that I would make last night's strawberry cider, breadsticks and True Blood night my favourite thing this week. But I'm not going to.

Nor am I going to go with my fantastic friends at work, or trashy romance novels, or Wrigleys Strongmint chewwies, or even the very pretty yarn I got with the $10 voucher that Lincraft sent me.


Even though I find the tingly sensation that I get in my legs when I sit down in my skinny jeans to be weirdly enjoyable, that's not it either. Nor is it the entertainment I get from trying to push repelling magnets together.

Nope, today, my favourite thing is the tiny tick of my watch. It's so quiet that I can only hear it in the really quiet moments, and I don't get them too often. So I like the fact that the tiny tick of my watch is there to remind me when they're happening, so that I know to enjoy them.

Oh, okay, all the other stuff can be a favourite too :)

Friday, June 22, 2012

Wine, Cheese and True Blood night

It's 5am, I'm in the pleasant place between tipsy and drunk, and I just wanna tell you all how much I love breadsticks, and that the choice between them and Ritz crackers and cheese is easy, (not that I don't love Ritz crackers and cheese) whereas the choice between Bill, Sam and Eric is hard. I know that 3 days ago I was in love with Bill, but a couple of hours ago I was in love with Sam, and then about a half an hour ago it was Godric (he's dead now) and now it's Eric, who, weirdly, looks a lot like Keith Urban sometimes.

As you can probably tell, Wine, Cheese and True Blood night is going well. Except for the bit where I've concluded I really need to stop trying to drink rosé, cause it tastes horrible, and switched to cider instead.

Whoop, in love with Sam again. I love being fickle for fictional fellas. And that's practically a tongue twister :)

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Is there a word for wrinking your nose up at something?

Sometimes, you come up with a nice pattern, and you pick a nice bundle of fabric, and you sew it all together, and it looks like shit.

We were discussing at work how it would be expected that if you had two people working, twice as much work would get done, when actually, two people are going to be too busy having fun, resulting in half as much work being done. I don't know if that's how it is with what I'm trying at the moment, but so far, it's a psychadelic mess.

Still, I'm learning the tricky quiltmaths of a HST at the end of a rectangle. So I'm quilting for Science!

And sometimes, Science isn't pretty.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Snh, Snh, Snh.

In my favourite series of novels, Discworld, by Terry Pratchett, there is a character called the Death of Rats.


The name's pretty self explanatory. 

Anyway, when he talks it's in Sᴍᴀʟʟ Cᴀᴘs and he says things like Squeak, Eek, and Ik and when he laughs it's written as Sɴʜ, Sɴʜ, Sɴʜ.

And for some reason, when it's all too big and too much, and a thousand words can't sum up the whole experience of being a human being, alive at this very moment, I think a little Sɴʜ, Sɴʜ, Sɴʜ pretty much sums it up. Because actually, it is pretty fucking funny.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

I, anosmic.

Sometimes, like, that moment when you realise you might have blown out the flame when you shut the door of the oven 10 minutes ago when you checked on your food, but the gas has probably still been pumping through the whole time, but you're not sure if it has or not, and you've turned it off but now you're not game to turn it back on since the oven door's been open long enough for it to all waft out, so you won't re-light it in case the whole damn house explodes, and your food's still only half cooked, and you're getting seriously hungry but you're gunna wait yet another 10 minutes before you even turn the oven on... Sometimes, I wish I had a sense of smell.

Monday, June 18, 2012

I am not counting down...

So I'm watching True Blood, since it's still TWENTY FOUR whole days till White Collar starts, and I need a new addiction to help while them away.

I'm loving it. All the sex, and the boobies, and the fantastic Louisiana accents, and shirtless (and pantless) Ryan Kwanten. Yay for all of it. I'm only up to episode eight, but it's all brilliant. The soundtrack too. There was even Cowboy Troy! And the quilts! If you need a cover story, because you're worried about someone judging your enjoyment of the kinds of gratuitous sex scenes and swearing present only on a show from HBO, just gush about the quilts. There's one on her bed which has that fantastic is-it-vintage-or-is-it-modern aesthetic, and I just saw a stunning hexie quilt, with one block in bright colours and the others in pastel...

Anyway... I'm toats in love with Bill, even though I think if I met them both at the pub I'd pick Sam. He's got prettier eyes, and nice boots and a very shiny belt buckle. But it's kinda the whole Buffy/Angel thing all over again, but with less clothing witty one-liners.

And while I've been watching it, I've been crocheting.


One ball of three down, but then, I'm only 2/3rds of the way through season 1...

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Sticking with my story

I'm finding it quite hard lately to conceptualise how prints will look in my designs once I've done them in solids.



And that, obviously, is why I had to buy all these - I don't know which four of them I'd like to use, but I want to be ready for the magical moment when I do.

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Favourite Finds Friday

My favourite thing tonight is finding something that you were worried would be lost forever. Last night we went out and had too much to drink (yes, on a Thursday night: Becky got home from her tropical holiday, after Casey got back from hers last Saturday, and, before we all remembered that we don't actually get along, we decided to go out together) and this morning when I woke up (after not remebering actually getting home - sure sign of a successful night) I couldn't find my watch.

I have quite a history of losing watches on nights out - by that I mean I've lost 3 of them. I've never lost a phone or my wallet, just nice old watches that I've found on ebay and fallen in love with. And then, tragically, lost. So when it was neither on my wrist or in the little pile of them next to the computer, I naturally assumed that it was gone forever. Weirdly, I also couldn't find the wireless mouse for my laptop though I was pretty certain I hadn't taken that to the pub with me. But then, I've also misplaced half my memories of the night, so it's possible I did.

Fortunately, at about 2am, after I'd spent the night on the couch reading random wikipedia articles, the urge to clean my room kicked in, and I found my watch in the bottom of my bed, on the opposite side to the one I sleep on, as I was changing the doona cover. And it felt good. And the mouse turned out to be in the lounge, hanging with the other mice. Which is toats handy, since the desktop and Blogger aren't speaking to one another right now, and it would have been a right shit of a job to write this on my phone.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

A random blog post about random things, randomly.

Yesterday, I ate an entire block of Cadbury Peppermint chocolate, except for two squares, which I put next to my computer screen, because that meant that I hadn't eaten a whole block.

I used to subscribe to Fat Quarterly, but after about a half dozen issues I decided it was a bit to cliquey* for my liking, especially since instead of being popular and planning the yearbook and the graduation ceremonies, I was off getting drunk in the arts buildings with the teachers. That's why I'm a big fan of GenQ now - because I suspect they would have been too. I put some money into their Kickstarter so my first issue is on the way, but in the meantime they have a challenge up - a few squiggly lines they want people to turn into a block - it's like Mr Squiggle but with fabric! And instead of Blackboard going "Oh hu-rry up..." we've got my mum going (at 4am) "God, haven't you gone to bed yet?"

Admittedly, they just wanted a block design, but that didn't take long, and I can't stand a hypothetical** so I did the maths and made it. I don't even know if it's actually submittable yet (I put pink both sides of one of the lines they had drawn, but there is still a seam there, which I think counts) so I'm not gunna post a whole picture: instead...

Trimmings are one of the prettiest things I throw into the bin.


I took a photo of this seam because it looks brilliant, and you'd never guess that the other 3 are horrible.


That's my two pinks next to one another. I could have made one of them orange, but I didn't want to. A well matched pink, yellow green and blue is all that it needs.

McDonald's have fish at the moment, to celebrate the Olympics. Just say no.

My leg has gone to sleep, before the rest of me has even gotten undressed for bed. Stupid leg.
 

*The Wikipedia article on cliques is fascinating, and I don't care that it says I am misusing the word.

**There was a TV show way back when on the ABC called Hypotheticals. I really liked that show, but that's the exception.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Traps

Since I had (have) more of them, I had another go at a random scrappy bits thingy - this one's even smaller.


I don't like it as much - I think it lacks the variety of the other one. It's just a whole lot of similar pinks. But it makes me really want to do a random cathederal quilt, with sashing, maybe even in black so it looks even more like leadlighting.

In the meantime, I forgot that I took this picture yesterday before work. It acually makes it look like the weather's been nice down here.


But it's a trap.

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A new kind of shopping

I can't remember entirely how, but tonight (and by tonight, I mean about 5 hours ago) I went to the Book Depository website. My goal, at some point, became to find a decent introductory book about wine. Sadly, I didn't. It was all how to make wine and 200 wines to drink before you die and such, when I wanted a book with a blurb something along the lines of A book about wine for people who don't really like the taste of it but would like to be wine drinkers because all the people on TV who drink wine look like they really enjoy it and frankly, it sounds cooler to have a glass of wine than a bottle of cider, so this book tells you an both a succinct and humourous manner which wine is both affordable and doesn't make you pull that "ergh" face."


That book it seems, simply doesn't exist. But I did come across Oz and James' Big Wine Adventure, which reminded me that I had the TV show. I'll be honest, halfway through season 1 (where they cruise through France) and I've still got no idea what I want to drink. All I know is, they look like they're having fun, getting drunk, and that makes me want to do it even more. I haven't even done a Coonawarra wine tour yet. I'm jealous.


But that's okay. At some point I strayed out of the wine section and into the humour, craft and trashy romance* sections, and now I appear to have almost two dozen books in my cart, and I'm torn between thinking to myself "but at $200 all up, that's less than a tenner per book, and that's damn cheap" and "Holy cow, $200, and it's free postage so you don't have to worry about combining savings, just cull it to about a quarter and buy the rest later" but I've no idea what I want now (well, in 7-14 days) and what I'll put off for a while.


Online book buying is just as hard as online fabric buying.


*Thanks to the Vaginal Fantasy webcasts, which have a name which sounds much more smutty than they actually are, I've finally been able to admit my fondness for trashy medieval and/or fantasy romance novels, and now the voices in my head have formed a bookclub with me, and we need more books.

Monday, June 11, 2012

And now for something completely different

Tonight I wanted to do some piecing, but I didn't want to have to faff around with the whole choosing fabric/coming up with a design/doing the math/cutting the fabric bit.

So instead I had a rummage around in my scrap bag, and paired the off cuts of the fabrics I used for the top of the John Deere quilt with some other blues, greens and yellows, and sewed up this.


I'm quite proud of it, especially since I didn't really do any seam pressing till I was halfway through, and my trimming was done mainly with scissors, and squaring done only occasionally. It's turned out both fairly flat and fairly straight, though it's a bit too small to be useful, at about 65x70cm so far, and I'm pretty much out of scraps of those colours. I'm torn between just making it into a quiltlet or maybe bordering it up to about 100cm square, but in the meantime it's hanging up on my curtain rail with all the other stuff I'm indecisive about.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Days of Somethingorother.

So today was apparently International Yarn day, but since Google didn't have a doodle for it, I'm not sure how serious it is. But Spotlight had yarn on special to celebrate, so I decided to go with it, and do something that had been worrying me for a while - crocheting an Escher-esque scarf with a twist so I could loop it twice.


As for why it was a worry - well, I was pretty sure that doing it would create a black hole that would swallow the earth. I'm not sure why I thought this, and thankfully it didn't happen (because that would be toats awkward) but I'd been holding off on trying it out for a little while because of it.


Frankly, I think I still prefer my super duper long brushed yarn dyed checks. And since yarn is in the name, I'm set.

After midnight I decided I'd quilt the top I made last night - it's pretty small, about 85x105cm, so it didn't take long. I haven't done a great job - the fabrics just didn't want to stretch taught over the batting, but I've already explained to Meagan that this is a using quilt, not a good one.


And I used a cheater fabric for the back - actually the top was pieced to match the cheater fabric, which Meagan picked way before having Thomas.


I've trimmed it down and cut my binding strips, but it's not actual finished. It's the international day of yarn, not miracles.

Saturday, June 9, 2012

Favourite Things 5am Saturday

It might seem mean, but since they've spent the last week off in their respective tropical paradises, I don't care. My favourite thing this week has been having this end of the house all to myself. Late night music, going to the toilet with the door open and using the mirrors in their bedrooms at night. Not that I haven't missed them - I have, but they've been on facebook plenty. Casey's on a plane from Adelaide to Darwin as I type, and Becky'll be back in a few days, but it's been all the fun of having my own place while still having Mum and Maddy to talk to, to stop me from going bonkers and talking to kitchen appliances like I do when I'm on my own.

As for other good stuff, well, the fact that I have now got the process of extending jacket sleeves down-pat makes me feel good. I buy a lot of clothes from the kids section but even though they fit in most places, the sleeves tend to be too short on jackets, so I go to the salvos, buy a knit jumper in a similar colour, cut off the ends of the sleeves and sew them into the wrists of the jacket. Voila, longer sleeves.


I'd been worried that my monitor was starting to give up the ghost, but tonight Steven suggested that it was probably just the cable connection, and to give the plugs a wiggle. It worked, and I'm very happy about that.

I hadn't done any serious piecing in a couple of weeks, so to have made myself a simple quilt top tonight feels nice.


I think it harks back to a lot of my earlier little quilts, where selecting the right fabrics meant half the job was done - the layout wasn't all that crucial, it was just about the pretty prints. Weirdly in the photo, the purple looks a lot like the print that it's paired with in its HST unit, whereas in real life, they look nothing alike.

Finally, tonight I was staring into the fridge, thinking I wanted something sweet and chocolatey, but not really sure what. Then, I remembered I still had half a hedgehog slice in my handbag, that I got when I went to the bakery with Maddy after I picked her up from school. And that made my tastebuds, and therefore me, very happy indeed.

Friday, June 8, 2012

PingPingPing

I'm just really really having a lovely night. I was going to do my favourite things friday, because I'm feeling so good, but I'm worried that by trying to quantify it, I'd end up losing it, so I wont.

I should also point out that that I've been downing sprinkles at a ferocious rate tonight - I tip them from the packet into an empty tic tac container, and then straight into my mouth.


It's heaps fun, I've had 4 containers worth tonight, my teeth all spontaneously fell out and I'm pinging so hard on a sugar high; now I'm just waiting for the soon-to-hit comedown at which point I will immediately fall asleep.

Gotta say, its cheaper than wine, and it tastes waaaaay nicer. It's 83% sugar, in case you were wondering. And rainbow.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Really

There's something almost brilliantly medative about shopping for fabric on etsy. The process of search and select, then looking through all the other items from the same seller to try get a good postage deal, and then repeating, over and over - it's almost like a warm bath for your brain.

It's not as much fun if you're super intent on something in particular, and have to try and work out who'll give you the best deal, but I'm just casually looking for brushed yarn dyed checks, and since it's mainly random Korean sellers, I'm picking solely based on what ones I like.


I ended up with this one... because I like it. I'll cut it very neatly into a couple of strips and make it into a nice long scarf - I've already got a couple that I made from the few brushed cotton checks that Spotlight have, but I really, really like this one.

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Question:

If you sew something, but didn't blog about it, did you really sew it?

I only ask because in the last couple of weeks what little sewing I have done has been clothes. My so-bad-it's-good formal mullet skirt, which will be saved for an actual BnS ball, and a gathered-front circle skirt in a brushed, yarn dyed plaid cotton, that makes me want to become artsy and hipster again, and start wearing roll-neck sweaters and trench-coats with skirts and tights and tall boots all the time, like I did when I was 19, even though those things don't really feature very much in my wardrobe anymore.

The problem is, clothes are hard to photograph. I am not good at selfies, and even worse at whole-body selfies. There is no big, full length mirror in our house, just a curious assembly of smaller ones, and you jigsaw together an idea of how you look between them. Also, as somewhat messy people, any picture featuring waist height or below is bound to have an... interesting background. But, because these things were made and worn fleetingly, without any record of them shared with the wider world, I find myself forgetting their existence, feeling like I've done no sewing in about 3 weeks, when actually I have; it's just been... ethereal is too artsy a word, but it's the closest I can think off. I made them, they were there and then they were, sort of, gone. Quilts I see on my bed every day, but skirts end up hiding in the cupboard.

Maybe I asked the wrong question, maybe I should have asked: If someone who does a lot of quilting sews some other stuff, does it sate the urge to quilt, in the same way that someone wanting garlic bread's hunger will be sated by spaghetti?

I think the answer is no, but I can't decide what it is that I want to quilt, and my fabrics are all a bit disorganised at the moment. And also, I couldn't find any garlic bread in any of the freezers, and even though my spaghetti made me full (to the point where I looked a bit pasta-pregnant) I still find myself at 4am, having just brushed my teeth, wanting garlic bread.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

Boooooriiiing

I sit here tonight, moving 1s and 0s from one box to another. No wonder people think nerds are boring. Being a nerd IS boring.

Monday, June 4, 2012

First world rainbows?

It's been an odd day. After my bottle of bad rosé last night, I was awake before my hangover was when the grandparents came to visit before lunch, but it had caught up with me by 12.30, only to be severely quashed by some homemade chips and lots and lots of tomato sauce.

I went to Spotlight and bought myself a pile of 10cm cuts of drill; I like it better for quilts that get taken on holidays because it's tougher than quilting cotton. Also, at this moment in time, the colour range is better in drill than it is in Prima.


I went to see a friend for an hour or so, then I got started with my actual plans for the night: First world problems night.

I organised it with one of the girls from work earlier, when we decided that first world-ing your problems, as long as you did it with a suitable amount of self awareness, was the best way to realise your life is actually pretty good. I started about 7pm, posting them on the hour...

I feel like going to the gym, but there's too many people there in the early evening.

Two computers running next to one another, with two mice and two keyboards. I keep getting confused.

Massive pimple on my neck, so I look like I've been bitten by a redneck vampire with only one buck fang.

My DVD box set doesn't have enough commentaries. Sixteen episodes and only three commentaries :( all done in 2 hours...

I'd really really like some fairy bread, but I make it with the sprinkles that are like little sticks of candy, and all we have in the house are 100s and 1000s, and it's just not the same.

Just had a massive freak out that there was some kind of hulking monster just outside the back door, but it turned out to be my 9-year-old sister's 4 wheeler.

I can't type an é - I have to google the word Nestlé and copy and paste it off the end.

One pillow is not high enough, two pillows is too high.

I actually cheated and came up with a whole heap of them ahead of time, but in the end, I didn't use any of them, instead thinking to myself each hour what was annoying me most. And clearly, yeah, my life's pretty good.

It would be cooler though, if I could rock this hair. And if I could just put the actual picture here, instead of having to link it.

Sunday, June 3, 2012

The Backup-Plan

Tonight, when my actual going-out-drinking-with-friends plans fell through, I decided to have a go at this whole being-a-wino thing.


Lesson #1: maybe picking bottles because they look pretty isn't the best idea. That stuff tastes like shit, and the only way to make it bearable is to add some strongbow. I knew I could count on strongbow to make things better.

Lesson #2: it's still possible to crochet when you're 7 standard drinks in, but only if you concentrate really, really hard.

Saturday, June 2, 2012

This doesn't deserve to be an actual favourite.

I know that its terrible. I really really do. Had I been present, I no doubt would have been horrified. And I haven't watched the video on the BBC news website, because I'm sure it would take the fun out of it. But as a headline, as a silly anecdotal story, the fact that it "rained" sheep in Melbourne yesterday is oddly, morbidly fantastic.


Image from here

Friday, June 1, 2012

Another one

A bit more restrained than the last one, and weirdly the colour ended up mostly on the edge. I like the thicker, more gradual change, but I'll always prefer bright rainbows.