Well nothing overtly creative anyway!
If I show you the following picture I’m sure you’ll understand why I’ve had no energy left to play around with fabric or yarn…
Yes, it’s exciting to spend time imagining the million different ways that one could live in and decorate all of the properties on the market, but how draining also! It is such a monumental decision too – we aren’t going to have children so the necessity to gain more space in the future is removed and therefore this purchase could, quite literally, be our ‘forever home’ (sounds like an advert for the Dogs Trust, doesn’t it?!) Trouble is, I keep finding myself saying things like “I want that house, but with that garden and in that location at that price” ARRRRGGGHHHH! If it doesn’t exist then stop thinking about it you stupid cretin…. What a waste of time!
In the absence of any new creations to show you, let us, instead, turn to my other passion – books (craft related, of course!)
I’ve recently been desperately trying to track down some sewing literature aimed at/for men. I’m sick of buying books that are always geared towards female sewers (and yes, I understand the reasons why there is such a disparity in the number of resources available to women and men) It’s a bit like Gok Wan’s shows – Ok, so I’ve watched liked 415 episodes where he discusses how to buy a dress that enhances your bust whilst skimming the hips, which jeans will minimise your thighs and make your legs look long and narrow, how to balance shoulders and hips for an hourglass figure blah blah blah….. And i’m STILL HERE, waiting for that one elusive episode in which he shows us how to cover up a beer-gut and man-boobs….
Rant over – let’s look at what I scored on my hunt….
Totally old-school, out-dated, out-of-fashion, but somehow wonderful! Got this on ebay for just over 2 quid! Bargain! Can’t wait until it arrives!
Needless to say – I couldn’t find anything more contemporary on offer.
If by the Summer, however, you happen to come across a MR post in which I suggest sewing any of these to take on holiday then please, by all means, borrow your husband’s shotgun, hunt me down and put me out of my misery….
Another recent purchase arrived the other day and I’m recommending that all my readers with an interest in fabric dash out and grab a copy (or do what I did and go online to buy it for a fiver!)
This is like a slightly more (only slightly!) colourful version of the Merchant and Mills sewing book that has become one of my favourite ever titles in what I can promise you is an extremely varied and extensive book collection! As I’m sure many of you will already know, Merchant and Mills expound the virtues of utilitarian chic, drab (but high quality) fabrics and an ethos of ‘keep it simple, do it well’ (they also produce a great selection of notions, fabrics and patterns that I am slowly acquiring!) Indeed, last summer I got one of their bag kits and made this in gorgeous khaki oil cloth:
ANYHOW! In Cloth Cassandra Ellis pretty much carries on where M&M left off. Admittedly the tone of the writing is quite annoying – she can be carrying things along quite nicely and then drop in some patronising comment that leaves you wanting to drop kick the book into the nearest wastepaper basket – but her focus remains on good craftsmanship, high quality materials in muted shades, simple shapes and producing items that are either deeply practical, or deeply beautiful, or a little of both.
Information on dyes and several images/projects showing the beautiful and delicate results that can be achieved…
The wool overnight bags — deffo going to make one of these for myself!
Her use of unusual fabrics, like this quilt made from old silk kimono:
And these, which I want to make at least 75 pairs of….
Is it a bit of a ‘coffee table book’, more style than substance? Very possibly – but for me it did manage to inspire and isn’t that really what a good craft book should do? We’re all so used to overly prescriptive patterns these days that I think it is refreshing to go back to a simpler style and use it as a ‘jumping off point’ for our OWN unique style, designs and adjustments.
Maybe I’m wrong – and if you’re more comfortable following intructions to the letter and enjoy knowing what the end result is going to look like then have no fear… Cassandra has included full size patterns for all of the projects…
Finally I thought I’d show you the little neckerchiefs that I made for my pooches a few months ago. They’ve been wearing them for ages, so I’ve just put them through the washing machine and will give them an iron before they go back on… If anybody fancies one for their own canine companion then you know how to get in touch and they cost peanuts…
MR x x x