Waiting for winter to blow away…

Six months between posts? It won’t do… but there you go. I just didn’t feel I had anything interesting to say, but I did have far too much to do, as usual. And here we are, at the end of a cold winter that seems to have ground on and on; my head thinks it’s time to start planting this year’s food, yet my heart misgives me, as another, vastly more talented, writer once put it. Instinct tells me we’re not quite there yet… though the signs of spring are slowly increasing with every passing day. My propagator is full of things that need a long growing season, like tomatoes & chillis, but it’s still too cold to transfer them to my little greenhouse.

All sorts of interesting thoughts have wandered across the wrinkled surfaces of my mind in the last six months; most of them have promptly exited stage left, never to be seen again. (Can you tell we went to the theatre last night?!) Today’s random distractions are the scenes depicted on old Japanese china, some of which has ended up in this household; I’m not in the slightest bit interested in financial value, and these battered old bits probably don’t have any. But what are these guys (and gals) doing? How are they doing it, and why? Are there well-known & familiar stories being depicted on them, or are they just pretty scenes dreamt up in the artist’s imagination? Enquiring minds (well, this one, anyway) wish to know! More images will follow…

Who are these guys? What are they up to? One of three pictures of them on this broken vase.

What else has happened? On the creative front, I’ve made a number of items; from new-bought material this time as I’m struggling to find secondhand stretch fabric that’s sturdy enough for re-making. I was very fed up with not being able to find tops that fitted & suited me, in fabric I liked, so when I found a pattern that had the right neckline, the right mount of simple shaping, and variable length sleeves so a sensible result was actually possible, I leapt into action, visited the fabric shop down West, purchased some good-quality stretch cotton jersey, and have duly made myself two ¾-sleeve tops, and two short-sleeved. Plus three simple nighties that might last longer than a couple of months, cut out round an existing one that fitted well but was long overdue for ragging. Three straightforward vest-tops from the (ample) offcuts; the nighties were cut from the edge or the fold & there was a lot of fabric left in the centre. All the fabrics I used had enough left over to make some more “underthings” too. I’ve started another rag-rug on the twining loom, using up an old favourite duvet cover that had worn very thin. I’m continuing to reduce the mess in my sewing room; I shouldn’t have “rescued” so much stuff when my mother went into her care home two years ago, as I still haven’t managed to sort it all out & move it on!

Padded jacket from old curtain fabric…

I’m currently working on some “visible” mending projects and have made another simple jacket from an old curtain, a cheap throw & a duvet cover. So yes, still busy on the upcycling front, and back trading every now & then.

Embroidered bees hide stains on a beautifully-soft child’s pure wool jumper.

Off now to hunt for some more intriguing scenes from old Japanese china! Here’s one from a lovely necklace created by a friend:

What’s going on here? Are those “prayer flags” hanging from the “washing” line, on their way to Heaven? Is the presumed supplicant asking the probable-scholar to write a prayer for him? And – which volcano is that, erupting in the background?