Friday, June 23, 2017

The Hiatus Continues

I seem to have lost my will to blog... not my will to live but my will to blog. I can't believe that in 2 months this is only my 2nd blog post. Not sure why and I am sorry for my loyal followers who will now have given up on me and gone to places else where for their blog fix. 

In the month since I last wrote my main creative input has been in scanning, editing, labelling and posting on Facebook my mother's negatives. She was an avid photographer although not necessarily proficient she was prolific. We children were the main subject for her photography as she documented our growing up.

My Uncle's family (on left) and our family on right. I am the little one in the pram near my dad. Its my siblings up to the tallest girl and the other side is my Uncle Jack's family. They lived a hour or so away from us at this time. 

I have now scanned all the negatives. It was quite a process. The 35mm ones were simple enough as I had a small scanner, given to me by my daughter several years ago. It scanned the photo and converted it to a positive digital image that I was able to edit quite easily. The black and white negatives from before she acquired the 35mm camera were harder. I had to scan them on our flat bed scanner, then use another program to convert the negative scan to a positive image, and then edit and enhance the picture using one of a number of programs. The flat bed scanner didn't always do a great job and I am seriously considering getting a special photographic scanner to redo the negatives to get a clearer image. but that won't be till Christmas. Anyway - its been an interesting going over the photos and trying to work out where they were taken and why and sometimes who.

My dad and me. I was named after him so it Philipa and Philip

My main way of identify the people and the occassion has to been to put them on facebook where my siblings and cousins can see them and work with me. I am the youngest in my family of 8 children as well as being  the youngest of the cousins on Dad's side and the 4th youngest on mum's. 
This photo really amused our family. Its the 5 youngest children. There was obviously a litter of kittens and puppies at this point on the farm but some how my youngest brother (near dad) only got a cut apple to hold. He looks somewhat bemused by this

It has illicted a lot of discussion amongst us all which has been great.
Our small community used to have a Fancy Dress ball for the kids each year. With very little money but lots of imagination mum would manufacture costumes for us all. This year (the earliest one I can find photos for) I was about 3 and went as Old King Cole. One of my sisters was  the pipers that he called for (mum didn't realise that the pipe he called for was his smoking pipe.)

Old King Cole was a merry old soul
And a merry old soul was he.
He called for his pipe and he called for his bowl and
he called for his fiddlers three

This has taken up a lot of my time - time I would usually spend sewing. I haven't missed my sewing time which is really weird for me. I feel like I am still in a bit of a hiatus or waiting time. I wonder if my excessive sewing over the last year or so has burnt me out. I have finished off a lot of quilts and other projects and thoroughly enjoyed my time. Now might be just a time of rest and recuperation.

My 2nd eldest sister Joy holding me when I was about 5 months old

I have done some projects. The Twilter group (on Facebook and Twitter) has been working on a QAL using a pattern called Layer Cake Explosion by Angela Gross from Quilts Bayou. The pattern is a free one from Craftsy but the instructions are fairly minimal as it was designed to be a class pattern, that she explained in the lesson. Daisy (from Laisy Daisy Quilts and Reads blog and podcast) is running the QAL on Facebook and she is writing the more detailed instructions for us. I happened to go on a retreat a couple of weeks ago and took it with me. I hadn't really started the QAL up till then and went from the beginning right through all the steps, using the pattern and managed to get in a muddle at one point as... well I was ahead of the game. Daisy kindly helped me along but the putting together clue is not being explained till the proper time.

So yes... I went on a retreat. I have been going to this particular retreat since 2002 (I think it is) I've missed a couple of years for various reason but have attended 11 or 12 times by my reckoning. The retreat itself celebrated its 30th birthday this year. Our theme was Pearls (for 30th anniversary) and the dinner theme was Pearls or T for thirty. This is the first year I have taken a friend with me and it was extra fun because of that. In the past, whilst people are always friendly and many of them I have known for the 15 years I have been going and some from before that even, it was nice to have someone who was MINE so to speak. We shared our accommodation, shared the same table group, sat together at meals mostly etc. It was lovely.

I made a couple of mug rugs for the swap we did on the weekend, worked on the mystery quilt and made a heap of hanging towels for Handmade With Love. It was productive.

I really need to get on with my Comic Con sewing as I have just over a month till we leave home to go on our trip to Japan, Europe and the UK. Once back from there it is just 10 days till the event. (I thought it was going to be 3 days and had timed it perfectly but Comic Con is a week later than I thought. Glad its not a week earlier) So I will have a bit of time to sew once we get back but not much.

Since the retreat I have cut out about 25 Easy Cosmetic zipper bags (from the pattern by So Sew Easy) The stiffening has been ironed on and I have started inserting the zips. Hopefully I will get them all done in the next few weeks. I have scraps and can sew more of the ear bud pounches and the teeny tiny zipper bags too. I am not sure if I will make any more of the laptop or iPad bags at this point. Will see.

I am sorry that I have been missing in action. I am trying to get myself motivated and back on track but its a bit of a hard slog. When I am travelling I will try to use my blog as my travel diary and so will be more prolific... which is great if you like travel stuff but for those looking for Sewing inspiration... yeah not so great.