Saturday, 25 June 2011

To Sew a Mockingbird

I've stitched a lot of treehouses lately, amongst other things. (For the whole story about my inspiration and the making of the embroidered treehouses take a look at my post on the Crafty Muthas blog).

I wasn't totally happy with the Charley Harper inspired bird at the top of this picture, maybe too simple and stark even for me. But I want to do birds because, a) my son loves birds and b) everyone else seems to love birds so I might stand a chance of selling them. (Cynical old bird talking?) I tried doing some bird-on-a-wire type sketches but wasn't happy with how they'd translate to stitch. So I fell back on a familiar theme for my family. The Harper Lee book 'To Kill a Mockingbird' has been in our lives for...a while. I studied it for 'O' Level, my husband named his bar Atticus, our daughter is called Scout...

So yesterday I drew this little mockingbird and I'm planning to start stitching him any minute now.

Wednesday, 15 June 2011

songs to sew to (1)

when i'm sewing i either like complete silence (a rare, rare thing in this house - seeing as my husband is actually noisier than my kids and they're quite loud) or i like to listen to familiar music. i'm not averse to something new, but if it's new to me i have to play it over and over again. this bright eyes track has been played many many times over the last few weeks. i liked their previous albums, they were more folky, but whenever this pops up it makes me sit up and listen. i know! it is 7 minutes long... there's a spoken preamble first, which is very soothing and then the music kicks in at about 2'30". love his voice. have no idea what he's banging on about. but love it.

so while i've been listening to firewall i've been making these little chaps. little summery owls from a donated jumper that had an accident in the wash. 

also this embroidered lyric hoop for my friend and crafty mutha, nat. we're off nightclubbing, eighties style, on saturday night to celebrate her birthday. she loves the stephen 'tintin' duffy song 'kiss me with your mouth' so i embroidered a suitable lyric from the song - she does give me lots of laughter, the hope comes with knowing someone honest and good and wanting them to be your friend for a long time, and while she's never given me a sock in the eye, i know if i pissed her off she probably would.

i sealed it with a kiss. just felt like an 80's thing to do.

the owls and more embroidered lyrics will all be popping up in my etsy/folksy shops soon. i'll let you know when. x

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

the first post is the deepest

i lied. this isn't deep at all. just a test really, to see how it all looks. thought i'd write something about myself (wow, about myself - how original?) as a way of introducing myself (i've said 'myself' three times now!) before i get down to the whole craft sharing posts that the future promises.

so... hi, i'm jennie. i like sewing and shrinking jumpers and ironing plastic bags. i have some friends who also like to do crafty things and i contribute to our posterous blog - crafty muthas. please take a look when you get the chance. the megalomaniac me of the first paragraph is a recent thing. my youngest starts school in september and i need to either get a crappy job (i realise not all jobs are crappy but i'm a 40 year old ex-tv producer with no qualifications who hasn't worked for seven years so i don't think i have many non-crappy options) or have a real go at selling some of the stuff i make in a regular, profitable way. i'm choosing to go it alone in the big wide handmade world.

actually, at this point in time, i do work. as a child-minder. so at the moment i have a few hours a day to clean up, cook, wash, shop, and work on any little sewing or craft projects i have on the go before it's time to pick up the kiddies and the real fun starts. i manage to make quite a bit, with evenings as well. the crafty muthas have put together a couple of really cool craft fairs and also had a few stalls at various other events and i've sold quite a lot. it's just not nearly enough to make a living.

so it is with some apprehension that i look forward to july, when i give up child-minding and become a full-time...what? i don't know what to call it actually. what will i call myself? well, when the school holidays are over i'll hopefully have six whole hours a day to myself which will be more than enough time to ponder existential questions and i might actually make some stuff to put in my brand spanking new etsy/folksy shops. and everybody wants stuff don't they?

* note for future* i need to work on the language i use to describe what i make and do.

my plan could fall at the first hurdle if my partner doesn't have his contract renewed in the summer. we have lived from one short-term contract to another for so long now that i've become immune to worrying about our future but i'm still realistic and if the worst happens it'll be the job centre for me.

so there you have it. some background to who i am, where i'm at and why. this wasn't what i'd planned to write at all actually. i was going to tell you an amusing story from my day! well you can suffer that next time. and maybe the time after that 'll get a few pictures up and start talking about sewing.