Saturday, August 28, 2021

Lockdown Projects ...........................................

Greetings lovely friends & readers

Lockdown Life continues here at the bottom of the world with our Level 4 Lockdown having been extended until the end of the month.    There is always plenty to do here at Threadbear HQ - though I must admit my energy levels (& enthusiasm) this time round are somewhat diminished.  

 Yesterday I was weeding an area of my garden & could smell the heavenly scent of wild violets - so I picked the sweetest little bunch to enjoy inside 💕

We have a surplus of lemons at the moment - our tree is laden & it's branches bending over.  I swap produce with my neighbour Jenny who gives me free range eggs in exchange for broccoli & worm tea.  Jenny left a dozen eggs in my letter box a couple of days ago so I decided to make a sticky Lemon Slice.

I used * this * recipe here - a recipe from a Cafe, that I had torn out of an old newspaper.  When I make something citrusy I want to really taste the citrus - not just a hint of it.  See the piece missing from the corner .......... I can most certainly attest that This Slice Was DELICIOUS !!!!  😉

Filling some bottles of worm tea for Jenny prompted me to give my worm farm a good clean out. I like to hose down the lids & get rid of any bugs & things every few months. I managed to fill 7 more bottles of worm tea - with spring just around the corner it's time to start liquid feeding plants & potted things again.

I came across a half pot of Resene "Hot Chilli" paint in my cupboard which was timely because my outdoor table & chairs were looking tatty after the winter.
I decided to give them a good scrub & then a coat of paint to freshen them up.
Our weather this week has been more settled & it was quite pleasant painting outside on my deck area.

I am always impressed with how much one good coat can give them a new lease of life.    Now if only the birds will stop using the chairs as perches ..........

I scrubbed out my old kettle, which I painted & stencilled last year & planted a small white paper daisy in this.

Last October on one of my trips to Mum's this drop-leaf tea wagon was waiting for me in her shed.  My sister-in-law had seen it being carted to the road side "free for the taking" & grabbed it for me, along with 2 wooden chairs for herself.
I pulled it out of my sleepout on Thursday, gave it a good wash down & then prepared to paint it with chalk paint in the colour "Pumice".

I started off out on the deck but found it easier to put it on my table upside down & get in all the nooks & crannies.  Yes I had my usual "Supervisor" who rather enjoys watching paint dry !! 😉

Most of it took 3 coats before I was satisfied with my coverage - I had masking taped the castors as I didn't want any paint on these.

I had this gorgeous Iron Orchid Transfer that I planned to cut into & affix to my tea wagon, to take the plain-ness off it.

I had a vision in my mind of flowers cascading across the top & down one of the drop leaves of the table as if someone had thrown a bunch of flowers across it . . . . . . 

I kept having to walk away & then come back to it several times before I was happy with my finish - it was tempting to keep adding more but I tried to restrain myself.
I'm really pleased with how it turned out & just have to give it all a coat of clear wax now to protect it.

I just added a small flower & a leaf to one leg (below)
Last night at the dinner table I was telling The Mr the story of how I came to get the tea wagon - he would have No Idea what I have stashed away in the sleepout nor where I acquired it from.

This morning this little funny appeared in my Inbox - sent from The Mr.  (Yes I must confess I am rather like that at times !!!)

Thank You all So Very Much for your visits here today dear friends,

I hope you are staying safe & well no matter where you may live in the world,

Remember to be kind to yourselves & to each other,

With Much love & friendship to you all,

Julie & the furry ones x0x0x

Friday, August 20, 2021

The Princess & The Pea ...... ❤ Tilda Style ❤

Greetings lovely friends & readers

(warning - Photo heavy post - I've tried to condense it but there's still lots of pics - apologies in advance)

Long-time readers of my blog may remember the Princess & the Pea Cot I did for my friend Sally way back in 2017.    I loved it & found it rather hard to part with ... & always kept in the back of my mind, that one day, I would like to do one for myself.

On my trip down to Mum's early last month I drove past a Vintage Store several times & couldn't help noticing a dolls cot out front on the footpath. I mentioned this to my friend Claire while we were Op-shopping just prior to my trip home - next thing I know she had whisked me off to the Vintage Shop & was able to secure the cot for me at a Very Reasonable price.  I was So excited 😊 !!

I must mention that as I was paying for the Cot, the lady very sweetly asked me "Are you going to be doing it all up nicely for a young girl?".   I smiled at her & replied "Yes I am going to be doing it all up nicely but it's for a rather large Not-so-Young girl aged 61!" 😉

As you can appreciate, after spending goodness-knows-how-long sitting out front of the shop - it was in rather a filthy state. I gave it a good scrub on my return home with sugar soap.

The next time I visited my local Library with Sid, I found * this * book the same one Sally had given me to use for her Cot.  The Princess themed doll & bedding patterns begin on Page 104.

Over the course of a wet, rainy week I painted my cot using Chalk Paint in the colour Vintage White. Painting all those dowels was not exactly my idea of fun - but I love how it all turned out.

I glued two thin lengths of wood together, painted & screwed to the back - this was to hang my lace drapes from.  This cot has a front that actually drops down & the mechanism is still in good working order.

First up I made a selection of mattresses.  I know in the original story the Queen piles 20 mattresses up on the bed but I had to make do with 6 as I didn't want a tower of mattresses toppling down on me.

I especially loved the ticking stripe ones.  These fabrics are all from my Tilda stash - some vintage Tilda & some from more recent ranges.

I was looking forward to making the bed quilt & cut into some gorgeous vintage Tilda that I had set aside for this.

I  attached some wide vintage cluny lace to the top, just to give it a bit more prettiness.

I didn't have enough Tilda fabric for the back but I found a pretty embroidered supper cloth that I used to back it.

Then I made a wee pillow - again using vintage Tilda.


Next it was time to drape the cot .....  I was over in the city so I popped into Spotlight as they have a good selection of lace/net curtains, which just happened to be 40% off that day.

I found a length of cream gathered lace in my stash which I sewed to the bottom - I visualised it just touching the floor.

I was happy with my cot drapes but after walking past them for a day or 2 I felt they needed something more ... so I decided to make some folded fabric roses from oddments of cotton lace.  I found this Youtube Video really helpful as I couldn't for the life of me, remember how to make these.
I also wound some ribbon & lace around knitting needles & painted these with a mixture of water & PVA glue.
(which is what you use when you don't have any Stiffy Fabric Stiffener)

This was the effect I was after ...  tumbling down ribbon curls

Next it was time to make my Princess.  The fabrics I used for her nightie & stockings are not Tilda fabrics but were already in my stash & I didn't have any Tilda that was suitable.

I love the sweet little crown charm which I tied around her neck

I am so pleased I gave her messy bed hair, which is what you would expect after tossing & turning all night long while sleeping on the pea !!!  I made her a crown by photocopying some Tilda fabric onto Inkjet paper. The first crown I made came to an end when a certain ginger 4-legged chewed it (!!!)

I also gave her a wee lace hanky as she was probably quite distressed after her fitful nights sleep & needed to mop her brow 😉

I tucked the wee felt Pea into the mattress.  I am deeply indebted to my lovely friend Jane, who kindly came to the rescue when I could not find/buy/acquire a crown anywhere. 

How perfect she is ... I Adore her !!!  

I think I should probably add at this stage - growing up I had 3 dolls which I adored , but never ever any cots, prams or other dolly related things, bar a rusty old pushchair that the neighbor tossed over the fence one day rather than take to the Tip.  I was always a doll lover & No - I am not going through a 2nd childhood but I do feel that at 61 years of age, it was wayyyyy past time I got my very own dollies cot.

And for those of you that were wondering ... Yes I did have unwanted help & assistance with the creating of my Princess & the Pea.

Most especially from my Very Own Real Life Princess !!!

If you've managed to last til the end - Thank You So Very much!!
We have gone into another Lockdown here in New Zealand, which was initially for 3 days & this afternoon has been extended to a week at this stage. I am fine as I have a good supply of toilet paper & Sewing essentials but I am a bit worried about my rapidly diminishing chocolate stash (!!!)
Stay safe & well dear friends - wishing you a wonderful weekend,
With much love & friendship to you All,
Julie & the furry ones x0x0x0

Wednesday, August 11, 2021

The Tale of Two Cats ............ (Tilda Ones) ❤

Greetings lovely friends & readers

I try to find things to enjoy no matter what season we are in.  It's still wintery here but the Daphne is in full bloom & I have a garden full of Green Dragon Broccoli ready for picking, as well as the citrus trees being laden.

This was last Thursday's pickings & I also gave away 2 large heads of broccoli.  The oranges are small, but are sweet & tasty - these ones were picked for dehydrating.
                          I also picked a bunch of Camellia flowers before the rain bashed them & turned them brown.

Last year during our Lockdown, my friend Gail dug up a corner garden on her property & removed everything - she wanted to plant it in succulents.  She filled a rubbish bag full of winter roses (hellebores) & clivias.  When our Lockdown went to the next level & we were allowed to see people again, she asked me to burn the rubbish bag on my burning heap.   
(The variegated one is the third photo)

Instead I removed all the plants from the bag, cut them back (they looked rather sick for awhile) & planted them in my garden.  I am delighted this winter that the hellebores are flowering away happily & there are a wonderful mix of pinks & creams, & even a variegated one which I have not photographed particularly well.

This morning I picked a vaseful of the hellebore flowers to enjoy on my kitchen bench. The vase was a $1 Op Shop find & is perfect for sweet little bunches of flowers like this.

Before I went away to Mum's last month, I started work on one of the Tilda Cats - a free pattern off their website - go 
* here * & scroll down about half way.  I had the dark grey fleck fabric in my stash which I used for the body, & the dress is made from Tilda Woodland fabric.

Upon my return from Mum's I finished her - I thought I would give her to Juno (my stepgrandaughter) for Christmas, as Juno loves cats & they have a real life grey cat.

Click on the picture to enlarge & get a better view

The bag is included in the pattern - some of the Woodland range have the sweetest selvedge edges, including this with the coloured squirrels along it.  I cut it out & sewed it to my bag strap as I thought it was delightful.  The Tilda pattern doesn't have whiskers but I decided my cat needed some so I used a thin waxed leather thonging that I had in my stash.
I had barely put the finishing touches to Juno's Cat when my lovely friend Jane called out & commissioned me to make her a Tilda Cat.  Jane had her own pattern & wanted hers made in a pretty pale grey linen & the dress from a vintage floral sheet.

When it came time to cut the dress pattern out, I didn't need to iron the sheet as Pippi very kindly did it for me !!! 😉

I LoVe how Jane's cat turned out  -  in fact I love it better than the one I made for Juno 💚.  Jane's only request was that she have a green nose to match the green in the dress fabric.

And that she have a hanging loop on the back as Jane planned to hang her up.

My other finish this week was an Order for 20 mothball sachets for my friend Maria.  I haven't made these in awhile & the house smelt fresh & lovely with the dried mint inside them.

You can find the recipe for these at the bottom at the bottom of this post Here.

As I sit typing this today, the furry two are sound asleep on my bed (Yes on my good bedspread that I said they were Never Ever getting on !!!)

Wishing you a wonderful rest of the week dear friends,

Thanks so much for your visits here today,

With much love & friendship to You All,

Julie & the furry ones x0x0x