tialys

English but now living in the south of France near the mountains and lakes. I love to talk, create stuff, hunt down cool vintage stuff and learn new things.

Homepage: http://www.thetialys.wordpress.com

Tight Lipped Tuesday #28

Trying not to totally disappear from the blogging scene whilst trying to buy and sell houses in different countries during a global pandemic, I remembered my ‘Tight Lipped Tuesday’ series of sparsely worded (for me) posts and, as luck would have it, it is Tuesday today and, as more luck would have it, I made something.

Home made granola because the commercially made stuff gives me terrible gas.

I know you’d want me to share that with you.

And if that wasn’t enough excitement for one day, I made some oat milk to go with it.

Anything to get away from packing boxes for half an hour or so.

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40 Comments

Sunday Snow

We’ve had a lot of rain over the past few days which fell as snow up in the mountains. It’s very early this year. It looks beautiful against today’s blue sky and this view from my house and garden is definitely something I’ll miss.

Still, I can’t wait to get back to England.

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35 Comments

Scrapping Scraps

This is the second time Scraphappy Day has come around and I have nothing to show for it.

Regular readers will probably be aware that I’m in a period of transition (housing wise) at the moment and am finding it difficult to concentrate on anything unrelated.

I am slowly but surely starting to sift through some of the outrageous stash of various craft supplies I have. (A nice sibilant sentence for you there. – Ooh, and another one 😄)

These are on their way to a new home

My cupboard, once full of balls of yarn now fallen out of favour and part balls of yarn not suitable for any of the sort of scrap blankets I’ve made for previous Scraphappy Days, is now (almost) empty.  The contents have been split between two local ladies – one who will use her share to make dog coats for the Twilight Retirement Home for Old and Disabled Dogs here in France and one who will use hers in a workshop she runs for children.

Of course there were other baskets, bags, etc. containing yarn scraps but too numerous (embarrassing) to show.

As the bedroom I will be commandeering in the new house for my workroom is probably a third the size of my current one – and will have to have a guest bed in it to boot – I don’t think I can justify taking my bins of cotton scraps, jersey scraps and selvedges (!!!) across the channel with me.

Again, more can be found in various bags and bin sacks but this will suffice to make my point.

Sad, but sacrifices have to be made and I daresay I will quickly build up more scraps once the dust has settled.

Meanwhile, my creative mojo is still missing, only emerging intermittently, which will explain why I still have only half a basset hound face on my worktable after a couple of months.

Those eyes look at me reproachfully every time I go in the workshop but I keep managing to resist.

If you want to see what could be made with all those scraps – and other types of scraps too – by people more focused than I am at the moment, see below.

 

Scraphappy Day is organised by Kate & Gun for anybody who wants to make new things from scraps of any kind – doesn’t have to be fabric or yarn.  Here’s a list of participants – both regular and occasional – if you want to have a look at the sort of things you can do with scraps.

Contact Kate (first name on the list) if you want to join in.

KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn (me), Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny and Kjerstin

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33 Comments

Talking About ‘Stuff’ – A Moving Story With Some Welcome Diversions

A word to the wise.  When you accumulate a lot of ‘stuff’ the day might come when you need to reduce the amount of ‘stuff’ you can keep and I am here to tell you that getting rid of that ‘stuff’ is no easy task.

We are going to be moving from around 300 square metres into 150 square metres and, as I have a knack of expanding into the space available to me, something (or lots of things) will have to give.

Our furniture doesn’t owe us anything.  We’ve had most of it for a long time and some of it was vintage/antique when we got it so that’s not so bad.  It’s the ‘stuff’ that will be the problem.  My ‘workroom’ is bigger than any of the bedrooms will be in the new house and Mr. T has an industrial sewing machine and rolls of leather as well as all the usual power tools, gardening equipment, etc.  but at least he will have a large garage in which to disport himself.

Selling things is time consuming and annoying and giving things away is almost as time consuming and more annoying as there are more takers but the demands on your time are just the same.  We only have one or two charity type shops and, soon, they will probably ban me.  Mr. T and I take turns in our different cars so that they don’t realise it’s all coming from the same place.  The déchetterie (rubbish dump) is complicated and everything has to be separated into categories – I leave those visits to Mr. T.

Anyway, more on that as things progress and, just to show that I am doing things other than trying to keep the house clean and tidy in case of viewings (few and far between in the current ‘situation’) and fretting about the sheer logistics of the whole thing, these are the blocks I did for Kate’s turn in the F2F block swap.

She asked for greys with pops of colour.  I didn’t have much grey so, as it was for Kate, I ordered some special Indonesian batiks in dove grey and paper pieced all three blocks as paper piecing is a great way to put everything else out of your mind while you concentrate.  Plus, I am much better at paper piecing than regular piecing for some strange reason.

So here are the three I made for Kate.

Hovering Hawks

Twin Star

Marley

Are you worried about the amount of ‘stuff’ you have and what you – or whoever has to clear out your house should you unexpectedly drop dead – will do with it all?  Or are you one of those enviable people who can keep a rein on their crafting supplies, crafting outcomes, pictures, clothes, shoes, bags, collections of ———–(insert whatever it is you might collect), etc. etc.  I think I’m actually going to find the downsizing process quite liberating (she says hopefully) and, in future, will never acquire anything without thinking about how easy it will be to dispose of it in the future.

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59 Comments

Keeping On The Right Side Of The Law

 

I’m feeling more and more lately that I need to buy this poster.

 

Seen (and appreciated) on Facebook.

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46 Comments

Scraphappy and a Half July

It’s the 15th of the month again and time to talk about using scraps instead of throwing them away or storing them in forgotten corners.

I read on Facebook that a woman locally to me here in France is sending off parcels to Samos in Greece containing things for newborns.  She asked if any knitters (or crocheters) could make small blankets.

I immediately thought of the leftover yarn I used for my large Attic24 Hydrangea Blanket – in the background above – which would be perfect for a miniature version.

Big enough to wrap a newborn in.

So that was my whole scrappy project this month but I thought I’d include a half size one too.  Half size because it was really spare, long standing stash stuff rather than scraps I used.  Although, the project could be made using scraps if you had some fairly big ones.

My lovely bath/shower cap had gone mouldy so on a trip to the beautiful city of Carcassonne the other day with a friend, I searched everywhere for a new one.  Not a one could I find, not even a boring plain, thin plastic one.  So, undeterred, I came home and made my own.

I used one of my large wire hoops (bought to house crochet mandalas or similar) to draw a circle on a layer of fabric and a layer of some water resistant fabric given to me years ago for lining wash bags or similar.

I unearthed the end of a roll of ready made binding and sewed it on around the circle.

Then used another odd piece to make a casing for the elastic.

I sewed the casing on two inches inside the diameter in order to achieve a bit of frou frou.

Et voila.

It has yet to be tested under the shower for water resistance but I’m quite pleased with it. (Sorry it was only half scrappy).

 

(p.s. I’ve not been overly visible on my own blog recently owing to upheavals in daily life – nothing bad unless you count probably moving from my beautiful big house in the foothills of the French Pyrenées with 2.5 acres, back to the U.K. where we’ll be lucky to get something with a garden big enough to swing one of our cats 🙀.  Anyway, I have been reading everybody’s blogs even though I might have only had time to press ‘like’ now and then  – just saying.)

 

 

Scraphappy Day is organised by Kate & Gun for anybody who wants to make new things from scraps of any kind – doesn’t have to be fabric or yarn.  Here’s a list of participants – both regular and occasional – if you want to have a look at the sort of things you can do with scraps.

Contact Kate (first name on the list) if you want to join in.

KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn (me), Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny and Kjerstin

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41 Comments

Two Wooly Collie Crosses

As I haven’t done a post for a while, I thought I’d just drop in to show you my latest needle felted portraits which are both of collie cross type dogs.

The first one is my girl Flo.  She has many expressions and this is just one of them so I will probably do another one of her looking sly and another looking ashamed, the latter look generally following closely behind the former.

I bought some brightly coloured felt as a background for this one but, even though it is easier to needle felt on to, I think I prefer the more ‘arty’ look of natural linen.  I’m not completely sure though so coloured felt could still figure in future portraits.

My sister in law sent me an e-card last week which was an animated version of her new young rescue dog wishing me a happy birthday in, what I imagine is my SIL’s voice slightly distorted to sound as if she’d taken a lungful of helium. Either that or she has a rare talking dog.   As it’s her birthday in July I thought I’d take a screen shot from the card and do a portrait for her birthday as a surprise.

So, here’s my version of Callie.

I need to frame her but can’t decide whether to use a large embroidery hoop or a deep frame.  The hoop will be a lot cheaper to post as Mr. Tialys is still stuck in France so can’t be my mule for items I want taken over to the U.K.  – nor indeed items I want brought over from the U.K. – but, so far, I’ve been waiting since the beginning of May for some hoops I ordered to arrive so it might be a frame after all.

Do you prefer the felt (doesn’t need to be green) or linen look?

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43 Comments

Scraphappy (birth)Day – June

Pssst!

I’ve got something to tell you.

Make it quick Short Stuff I need my sleep.

Well, today is the 15th of June so not only is it Scraphappy Day – hence the basket of felt scraps –

but it’s also The Servant’s birthday.

She’s how old? I don’t believe you.

It’s true, she remembers The Clangers * and she was even a bit too old for them then.

I’ve got her this flower.  What have you got her?

Let me think…..

Hmmm.  I’ve given her plenty of mice before but she doesn’t seem to like them.  She looks cross and calls me disgusting so I think you’re off the hook.

I’ll have to think of something else.  Maybe a lizard.

What are you doing done up like a cat’s dog’s dinner anyway?

She made me this little waistcoat out of scrap felt.

It even has a little vent to accommodate my tail.

I think the embroidery and the gold button from the vintage button jar make me look as if I’m wearing a Mayoral chain of office.

My whiskers are made from real horse hair taken from The Servant’s friend’s horse – does that count as scrap?

I’ve no idea, now shift over and let me get some shut eye, I think The Servant has spun this tale of a very small scrap project out for long enough now.

 

 

For my non-British readers.  The Clangers (1969-1974) was a series that chronicled the melancholically funny lives of the Clangers, a flutey-voiced family of woolen, knitted aliens living below the surface of a knobbly little planet far out in space. Their misadventures brought them into contact with such unlikely creatures as the Soup Dragon, the Froglets, the Iron Chicken and the Glow Buzzers.  (IMDb)

 

 

Scraphappy Day is organised by Kate & Gun for anybody who wants to make new things from scraps of any kind – doesn’t have to be fabric or yarn.  Here’s a list of participants – both regular and occasional – if you want to have a look at the sort of things you can do with scraps.

Contact Kate (first name on the list) if you want to join in.

KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Lynn (me), Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill, Claire, Jan,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean,
Joanne, Jon, HayleyDawnGwen, Connie, Bekki, Pauline,
Sue L, Sunny and Kjerstin

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59 Comments

Tight Lipped Tuesday #27

For a couple of weeks now the lockdown in France has been eased considerably and, from this week, it will be further relaxed with bars and restaurants opening.  Why don’t I feel like going out then?  I seem to have become a voluntary recluse.

However, after I WhatsApped a photo of myself to my daughter last week and she compared me to this character, I have felt pressured to make an appointment with the hairdresser.

The Addams Family’s Cousin Itt

I think if I took a leaf out of his book and put on a beret and some sunglasses I could carry off the look for another few weeks.  What do you think?

 

 

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49 Comments

Pooch Portrait Gallery

Remember my first forays into 2D needle felting and, in particular, dog portraits?

I thought you might like to see how I’ve been getting on since I started at the beginning of February.

My dog Stan was my first go but I could see room for improvement.  Which was just as well otherwise why pay for a course?

The next one I did was a Trailhound.  I don’t have a Trailhound, and don’t know anybody who has but the photo was in the course for us to use as a practice piece for a smooth coated dog.  Even though he was only my third go – I did a practice Jack Russell too which I showed in an earlier post – I think he’s still the best thing I’ve done so far.

I was really pleased with him and the practice will come in handy for when I do a portrait of my girl Flo as she has a similar look.

Next I did another practice piece, copying the Lhasa Apso photo on the course to try out a longer haired dog as I wanted to do my sister’s Westie for her birthday.

The long hair was difficult but I think I made a passable portrait and I was pleased with the collar.

We lost Phoebe, our lovely German Shepherd back in 2013 and I didn’t have that many suitable photos of her to copy but I used what I had and I’m quite pleased with the result.

I’m sure those of you who paint will already know how many different colours are present in things you previously thought of as comprising only a few.  I used so many colours of fibre in those ears and, close up, I thought it looked ridiculous but, once you stand back, it all seems to work.

Then it was time for the Westie.  He’s called Harvey and my sister adores him so I wanted to make my first portrait for somebody other than myself a good one.

Again, the long hair, going off in all different directions, was difficult but hopefully she’ll be able to recognise her beloved fluff ball.  To be honest, I think most Westies look the same but I’m sure their owners don’t think so.

I won’t be framing my practice pieces, but for the others I found some good frames in Ikea which are perfect for textile art because you can sink the image quite a way down from the glass.  At least it was glass when I bought this one to frame Phoebe but when I ordered another four of the frames online the glass had been replaced by some sort of polycarbonate.

I still think they are good though and very reasonably priced if you are thinking of framing any textile work.  The model is called Ribba, they come in both black and white and they cost about 7 euros.

Next up, will be my beautiful Flo

I’m still really enjoying myself with this and working with lovely pure wool fibres is a treat.

Thank you for visiting my gallery.

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33 Comments