Wednesday, 24 November 2010

a little bit of slap

Now then I am no stunner. I didn't fall out of the ugly tree, don't get me wrong. But I've not won any modeling contracts. But I find it amazing how many compliments I got last week. I put my hair in pin curls one day as I am trying out various styles for the Christmas party. So I went to work with a side swept rolled fringe and side curls. Now you can't wear a vintage hair like that without a ton of red lippy :o)

It seems as soon as you change your look the compliments start flying. I sometimes wonder if people really mean it when they say something looks good or if they just feel that they should say something. I also never know whether to be insulted or not when people comment that I look nice when wearing make up. Do I look that bad normally? hehehehe I know that's not the case and it's just a matter of complimenting the change.

Tuesday, 23 November 2010

Christmas dress 2010

I've been working on this dress for a few days now. So far I have made 2 muslins of the bodice to try and alter the pattern to fit me better. I have had one temper tantrum and I think it it now ready to sew. It's not perfect but quite frankly I just don't know enough to make it any better. This has cemented the idea that I need to get some good reference books on fitting. I'm stabbing in the dark here.

But I am now ready to cut my fabric. The actual sewing of this dress should go pretty easy. It has 4 bodice pieces and 2 skirt pieces plus 2 pockets and lining. There are 4 darts and it has a wide neckline at the front and a deep V right down to my bra strap in the back. I'm going to have to attach it to my bra in some way to stop the straps falling off or my bra straps peeking through :o) Because this should be quite quick I plan on making a huge petticoat like this one to go under it. Ok so that one has 10 layers and I might not go that mad. But somewhere between that one and this one maybe :oD

I'm still searching for the perfect hairstyle to go with it and as soon as I've done that I'll figure out what hair accessory to craft. I'm thinking copper to go with the colours in the fabric. But that is less important than the dress so I won't get hung up if I don't get round to it.

Monday, 22 November 2010

Ooh what to talk to you about today? I feel like writing but don't really have any idea what about. So be warned, this might be a bit random.

I had one of those really vivid dreams last night. You know the ones, you wake up and you can't forget it. I tend to have them about people I haven't spoken to in ages. Sometimes I'm still in contact with these people, in which case I usually drop them an email or a text. Sometimes they are people I haven't spoken to in years and I'm left with a deep sense of loss and wondering if they are ok. Last night's was about an old schoolfriend and thanks to the wonders of Facebook I was able to say hello.

I find dreams fascinating. I used to keep a dream journal when I was younger.I always found it amazing that the simple act of writing it down made me retain details for so long. I could re-read them and it would be fresh in my mind. I love the fact that dreams can either make sense or be surreal, be from your view point or 3rd person, remembered for months or forgotten before you've really woken up.

I've never had a repetitive dream but I do have repetitive places. I've never had a lucid dream but when I have a repetitive place I quite often realise I am dreaming I just can't control anything. I quite often get sleep paralysis. Mine is hypnopompic and it really is terrifying. I feel I can't breath and panic sets in. I know I'm asleep and just need to wake up and it's such a struggle to manage it. Occasionally this is linked to the hallucinations and I feel like I'm drowning or being suffocated. A bit mental really.

Ok so that was a bit of a wander. Told you it was going to be like that :o)

Ok more sensible topics, lets see. Tonight's plans are quite full. I need to make tea (chinese curry from scratch), bake bread, make cake and biscuits (before Spadger starts complaining), sew the 2nd muslin for my Christmas dress and then if it is still a descent time start cutting the rest of the patterns for Christmas presents.

Yeah, not much.

Spadger will be putting the finishing touches to my Christmas present so I can hopefully show you guys this week. I'm very excited but I think it will have to be hidden from me so I actually get on with the presents :o)

Thursday, 18 November 2010

Dedicated follower of fashion?

I've never been a fashion bug. What is hot this season does not define what I will be wearing. I am capable of leaving the house without make up on and with my hair scraped back.

I thought I would just get all that out of the way before I started this post :o) You see dear readers I am going though a funny phase at the moment. I suddenly have a great interest in what I am wearing. I've been looking at my make up box for the first time in years. I've been coveting shoes. I'm not sure what is happening to me. Now it's not like I'm going to go all Sex & the City on you all but I do feel a girly moment approaching. I think I can identify the things that have started it. Let me show you.

1) At the beginning of the year my office amalgamated with another. So we went from 2 blokes, me and our lady boss who is not girlie to us plus 1 other dude and 4 other women. Out of those women 3 are quite girlie.
2)My life is broken up into work, farm and evenings at home. None of these offer any real opportunity to dress up and none of them require a polished appearance.
3) I discovered this blog. I can't even remember what I was Googling for at the time. I am fascinated by her make up and a tad jealous as I've never been able to do anything half as interesting.

I used to wear make up everyday. Not a lot, I was never a full set of foundation all the time type of gal. But mascara and eyeliner played a mighty part of my life. I've never been trendy but I always liked clothes. I had going out clothes and casual clothes. Clothes for different occasions.

When my life changed and I started to think about my impact on the planet, living a more frugal life and all things like that, clothes and make up kinda went out of the window. I don't buy clothes now I make them. But I have been cautious not to over make. Mostly due to Spadger saying I can't make an outfit for everyday. Well why not? I feel at the moment that I am in a rut. I wear the same clothes week in week out. The sensible part of my brain says I should be grateful to have more than one outfit. It says, why do I need loads of choice? Why do I want?

The simple answer is I don't know. But I would like a bit more excitement in my wardrobe. I still plan on making it all or buying from charity shops. But I would like to get back into caring about what I wear. I also plan to get back into make up. I don't intend to wear it everyday but I'd like to learn a little bit more and start wearing it at times other than the rare occasions that we go out.

Has anyone else been through a point in their life like this? Please comform me that I'm not having some sort of midlife crisis!
Man I am so busy at the moment!

As I'm sure you are aware that season is upon us. Yes there are only 36 sleeps til Santa comes now which means I am up to my neck in Christmas presents. Where is my pack of elves to help me sort all this? This year I will be making everyone's gifts. I tried this last year and failed miserably. I took too much on and had no organisation at all. This year I've been a bit better but I'm still starting a bit later than I would like. I just can't get into the mood for Christmas presents til November.

I've limited what I'm making this year to food, soap and a few sewn/knitted goods. Food is a good one as I can do a lot of it the night before we go visit people rather than having to have all this stuff done ages in advance. I've got some jars of chutney and jam for some people and I'll do biscuits, cakes and maybe truffles for others. I have 3 different kinds of soap curing at the moment which will be wrapped up prettily for various folk. For the 4 small children in our friends group I am making soft toys; a bear, a mouse, an owl and an turtle. For friends I am planning on making some messenger bags and needle rolls for those who knit. For my Niece I'm going to make accessories and maybe a make up brush roll. I am a little stuck for my Nephew so I'll have to ask his mother for ideas. I'm going to stencil a tshirt for one of our male friends (boys are so hard to make for I think). For the cold pawed of my friends I'm going to make some wristlet/mitten things using this tute from Erin at Luck and Bliss. Charity shop jumpers here I come!

All this in 36 days. Plus I need to make my dress for our Christmas party which is on the 10th. Yeah I've taken on too much again. The frustrating thing is none of it will take too long as long as I stay motivated. With this in mind I joined Crafty Christmas Club. I'm hoping that presenting my goodies to the group will motivate me and all their pretties will inspire me. So here's counting!

Oh, and one more thing, I need to make an advent calendar and fill it my the first. I think I need a lie down.

Thursday, 11 November 2010

Remembrance day

Image courtesy of News of the restless

Today is Armistice day. I've always honoured the 2 minutes silence as I think that those who have died in our armed forces and their families deserve a moment of respect. I am incredibly anti war but this does not mean that I cannot appreciate the individual sacrifices. During the 2 mins I try to reflect not only on the service folk but the civillians as well. People who have nothing to do with the conflict who lose their lives just because they are there. The people who are displaced, wounded or left without family.

Our little one asked us recently if we coudl have one wish what would it be. Spadger responded that he would like war to dissapear. Not that he wanted peace but that he wanted the concept of war to go. I couldn't agree more.

Today please spend a few moments thinking about the horrors we perpetuate upon our own species because we spend too much time focusing on our differences and not enough time appreciating that we are all the same. Look to your fellow man and love them today and everyday.

Tuesday, 9 November 2010

You remember I said I was tired?

Well it's 22:53 and I've just finished making 2 jars of stewed plums, 4 jars of hedgerow jam, 4 jars of strawberry jam, 2 big jars of plum and bramble jam and have 2 loaves of bread in the oven. Spadger has just handed me a mug of finest cocoa and I intend to sit on the sofa with a book and sup it. There was a plan for some stewed rhubarb too but there is only so much I can do :o)

The Lady Grey coat

I finally finished the coat just in time to meet my girlfriends for a drink last week. Bonus. I'm not 100% happy with it but I guess we are our own worst critics. My momma used to make clothes for a living and she thinks it's great. Likewise B~'s grandma was a seamstress and she thinks it's cool too. I've had lots of compliments on it so far and thought I would share with you guys.

Please excuse my less than happy face. The place I wanted to take the pics had been gated off and this meant the wonderful arty shots were not happening. I was not happy with the prospect of using our garden but I think Spadger did a wonderful job on them.

Did I really need more exercise?

Ok guys, you remember me telling you about the epic clearing of the goat pens? Then the trek uphill on Sunday with 2 stone of flour in my backpack? You would have thought that I'd had enough exercise for the week right? Right??


Yesterday me, Spadger and our friend B~ helped our 2 friends S~ and N~ move a piano from the church up the road to their house. The church wanted rid of it and said they could take it for a small donation. They were so desperate to get rid of it that we had to move it last night or it was getting skipped. So in the pouring icy rain the 5 of us shifted the piano.

0.2 miles/321.868 meters/1056 feet/352 yards

That is how far we took that piano. We lost 2 casters on the way and had many people looking out of their windows at us as the remaining casters didn't turn well so there was a really nasty scraping sound. We did manage to get it there without damaging the piano or their house.

S~ and N~ then fed us a gorgeous homemade veggie curry and tiny little shop bought steamed puddings with custard. Man did we devour it! Today I am covered in bruises and so very tired. But it was a really fun night.

Sunday, 7 November 2010

Who needs a gym subscription?

Well yesterday we put that to the test. Me, Spadger and my momma spent the day at the farm clearing out the old goat pens. The lass who owned the goats got rid of them months ago but has never gotten round to clearing the pens. There was at least a years worth of compacted straw and muck just waiting to be moved. We agreed to clear it if we could take as much as we needed to help enrich our growing space.

Between the 3 of us we managed to clear 2 of the 4 pens and the central space between both pairs of pens. So out of 6 spaces we cleared 4. It took us about 5 hours of solid s**t shovelling. Oh dear lord was it a workout! Honestly, no one needs a gym subscription. They need to do some manual labour. I have a pleasant ache in all my muscles. To add to this we walk 2 miles-ish home from a friends last night and then today Spadger hefted all the bags of poo into a truck and then back out of it again at our house and I walked the horribly steep hill from the shop to our house carrying nearly 2 stone of shopping on my back.

Yeah I'm sore! It hasn't hit him yet but it will tomorrow or Tuesday.

This evening we're shlebbing out on the sofa with a beer and a film. I think we've earned it;

Saturday, 6 November 2010

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Lyrics that touch you

Music is an amazing thing. There are songs that bring back memories or make you feel a certain way every time you hear them. For me a lot of music I like is irrevocably linked to a feeling of sadness or despondency. This week they seem to be playing all of those songs on the radio at work :o(

I thought I would share with you a few of these songs and my favourite lyrics from them. I'm also planning on doing more posts on some of my favourite songs and what they say to me. But for now let's look at the radio's way of digging into my past. I would have put videos for them up but I just didn't get round to it. So I really hope you find the songs and listen to them as you read. But if not, no biggie.

Maroon5 - She will be loved
The album this song is off was one of 2 albums I listened to as I decorated my room in the house I lived in after uni. I had moved in with my ex and one of his friends as a room had become free and I needed somewhere to live. I didn't want to move back in with a parent and it was cheap. It was one of the worst mistakes I have ever made. I should never have stepped foot in that town again let alone so close to him. The next 2 years robbed me of all the confidence and freedom I had gained at uni. They took me back to the emotionally crippled 15 year old that is my inner self. They were bad years. This song reminds me of those times just by listening to it.
It's not always rainbows and butterflies
It's compromise that moves us along, yeah
My heart is full and my door's always open
You can come anytime you want

This lyric in particular moves me. At the time I was lonely and seeking comfort in all the wrong places. There was a boy who loved me but not enough to be with me and that was tearing me apart. This song summed up the bittersweet nature of our relationship. Things are not easy but I'm here for you. That kind of sentiment.

Nickleback - How you remind me
During those 2 years I hit bottom in many ways. I went back to self harming in a big way. I took an overdose. I let myself be manipulated and broken by my ex. I felt unworthy of love. I find it very hard to listen to this song without feeling both angry and hopeless. Yet I do like the song so it happens.
This time I'm mistaken
for handing you a heart worth breaking
and I've been wrong, I've been down,
been to the bottom of every bottle
these five words in my head
scream "are we having fun yet?"

Goo Goo Dolls - Iris
This next one came out when I was 16 and was just at the beginning of the 2 complicated relationships that defined my adolescence. I was also just starting my dependency on self harm. I found that when I couldn't cry I tended to hurt myself more. So you can see why the below lyric resonates so much.
And you can't fight the tears that ain't coming
Or the moment of truth in your lies
When everything feels like the movies
Yeah, you'd bleed just to know you're alive

Ok so that's it for what the radio has been playing. I'm now going to introduce you to a few other songs that are important to me for various reasons.

Matchbox20 - Push
Now this one is a very important one to me. The first time I heard it was with my ex. At the time I was, well, I was his bit on the side. There really is no better way to put it. I spent a long time hoping to be good enough for him to go out and he messed me around for a long time before we finally did. We were together on and off for 3 years and engaged by the end of it. But he never made me feel like I was worth anything and not long after going away to uni I finally got the confidence to leave him. I got the confidence to believe that someone else would want me and I didn't have to settle for him.
The words to this song stayed with me and would be guaranteed to make me cry if I was feeling the slightest bit down. It was the song I played as I took my overdose.

That said it is still probably my favourite song and I do listen to it often.
She said I don't know if I've ever been good enough
I'm a little bit rusty, and I think my head is caving in
And I don't know if I've ever been really loved
By a hand that's touched me, well I feel like something's
Gonna give
And I'm a little bit angry

Dashboard Confessional - Standard Lines
This one speaks to me of a love that is damaging. One that bruises and breaks. One that will never last but will be with you forever. It speaks of the time after such a love. Being lost without it.
I am a lover of the tragic romance so I think this some appeals to that part of me.
But your taste still lingers on my lips like I just placed them upon yours
and I starve for you.
But this new diet's liquid
and dulling to the senses.
And it's crude but it will do.

Darren Hayes - Unlovable
I have no lyrics from this one as it is the whole song that touches me. It reaches into my heart and sings to all my fears. I spent most of my life believing I was unworthy of being loved. I was an early developer physically and looked older than my years which meant I was desired before I was fancied. Until meeting Spadger There has been been no one who was either willing or capable of sustaining a relationship. Those unwilling wanted me on the side. Those incapable were too broken to manage and I can't blame them for that. It was their shattered natures that drew me to them. I know now that I am loved. I do not doubt it for a second. But that 15 year old wreck is still a part of me and the music touches her.

So that is a look at some of the more maudlin music of my life. I hope you have gone and found the songs and listened to them as you read. I'll be back soon with more. Maybe even a few cheerful ones :o)