Sunday, 31 July 2011

Mollie Makes Issue 1

I realise that this issue has been out for a while but if you have not bought it yet or seen these magazines then you might like to pick one up when you next see one and have a flip through.
It features all things handmade and lots of ideas.  I have not subscribed, which is an option, as I already subscribe to Sew Hip, but I will confess that I have not missed an issue yet.
Sophie wanted me to try the apple cosies so that she can take one into school.  It is a crochet pattern so it may take some time.  Has anyone else made these up yet?
What initially caught my eye was this lovely little fox made from felt.  I have recently bought a little book on how to make felt creatures ( I will feature that another time) and he is really cute.  The fact that there are templates/patterns and instructions too are a bonus.
Many printers had copying facilities now or if they are 100% already then I like to trace them off so as not to cut up my mag.  Greaseproof paper for lining cake tins is a good thing for this. Comes in a long roll and is not too expensive.  There are several sets of patterns and when yo think how much books and patterns can be £4.99 may not be so bad once a month.  I do not smoke, and only drink a little.  I do not go out a great deal (crikey this is not sounding good is it?) and I tend to keep magazines like these so it is worth it to me.
Plus lots of lovely photography and up to date releases from designers such as Amy Butler.
So far each issue has had a kit on the front that the first issue had a felt mobile phone case.  My hubby has had to update his for work so I have been given his old one.  It is tricky to use, it clearly has more of an IQ that I do but I have promised to try and learn how to use it over the summer.  Anyway, this kit would fit it perfectly.  You have templates and you cut out the pieces following the instructions.
 I did change the appearance of mine to suit my taste, I did not bother with the circle of felt behind the bird as I did not feel that it needed it.  I also machined the two halves together to make it stronger.
I also added a small black brad for its eye which was not in the kit and used matching embroidery thread to put the bird on the front.
I enjoyed this little kit and the felt was quite think and plenty of it.  I had some left over to make a simple keyring if I wanted.
Well worth the money, it is printed on thick good quality paper and it is different to many of the other craft mags on the shelves at the moment.

My other issues are at home as we have arrived in sunny Seaford this afternoon, so hopefully some posts of what we are up to and places to visit should you come this way.
Have a good week.
Do not forget to join in with the GO fabric cutter giveaway.  Click on the picture at the top of the blog to go to Little Cottage Comforts who is hosting it.

Saturday, 30 July 2011

Etsy Up-Date

Over the summer I am going to be re-organising my Etsy Shop.   First up is my supplies section featuring hard to find sequin waste. I have had several enquiries which has kick started me into sorting it out.  There will be some new items which I have made and I shall be adding to the supplies section.  I am also working on some PDF's  sheets which you can buy and download to make up yourself.  My daughter loves making things so I will have a Kids section.  Could save your sanity during a school holiday.  The side bar of items has disappeared along with the link so use the link here or the smaller link in the side bar.  This will take a bit of time as there are over 50+ items which I want to change as well as some new ones.  I want to detash some bits too.  I started to do that using Folksy but nothing much happened.
  I am also off for a break for two weeks as well.  A much needed brain break then back to it when we get back. So do keep coming back.
Once that has been sorted out I intend on setting up a website again.  That is a longer job, but hopefully will be live in time for a certain event which takes place in December.  I refuse to type the word in July!  I think you all get the idea though.

Friday, 29 July 2011

Blog changes

Once a year, about now, I feel like a bit of a change at Indigo Blue.  Last August I added the blue background and a 3 columb layout.  Did it all on my little own and it all worked.
So I got up this morning and as it was too hot to spend much time outside I decided to make some changes.
I found the above background here and loved it straightaway.  It reminds me of some of the felt notebooks that I make and it is very summery and cheerful.

So I followed the instructions and deleted my existing background.............................
and frankly that is as far as I have got.  Try as I might I can not add this new background despite following all of the installation instructions.  I have the right template, but the only thing I can think of is that everything has been changed during the past year on blogger.  Making changes last year was a doddle and took a couple of hours of carefully stages. 
So, I have lost my background and I have not got a clue how to add another.
The intended background says it needs minima template and it has but there is something stopping it from loading as I can get the logo to show at the top of my blog but not the background itself.  At the moment I have a different logo in an attempt to attach a background from another source, but still nothing.
Maybe I should change the whole template but I can not one the same to the one I have.
What simple task have you been working on today that turned out to take all day or proved not to be fruitful?
Oh well, as Scarlett would say
"Tomorrow is another day"............

Thursday, 28 July 2011

"GO" baby Cutter Giveaway

Pomona over at Little Cottage Comforts is having a fantastic giveaway in conjunction with Accuquilt by giving away a GO Baby cutter plus three cutting dies.  Makes cutting up fabric for quilts a breeze and addtional dies can be bought from the Accuquilt site.  I saw one of these in a fabric shop on the way to Falmouth a couple of months ago.  Oh so tempting with hours and hours of endless fun.
Pop over and take part..... I am going to.

Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Tie Dye T-shirt Re-Vamped

A couple of weeks ago my Textiles group tie dyed some t-shirts, tops and pillowcases that they had brought in. It was amazing how the same dye baths reacted with the different fabric contents. One of the purple tops had red streaks running through it which gave it a sort of 3D look.

The following lesson, once they had dried on coat hangers on a running rail sat on top of plastic sheeting we discussed embellishing the tops.

I like to have a go as well, white t-shirts to not seem to stay white like they used to and it enables me to demonstrate how it could be added to.

So my t-shirt is shown above, dyed in the pink bath along with everyone else's.

I like my buttons so I decided to pick some bright summery colours to decorate the neckline.The flower in the centre is a lovely shell button and I evenly spread them along the neckline and stitched the on individually.It looks a little like a necklace.

Some of the students added sequins and ribbon too. Sorry no pictures as they were so keen to take them home that I could not really say no just so that I could take some photos. Never put off enthusiasm!

I have often tie dyed t-shirts for Sophie, especially when she was younger, just popped a top in from ASDA along with the students work as I feel that learning is also by doing the task yourself as well.

Actually wearing the final outcome is even better, but the B

British weather had other ideas, but come next term and a fine day I shall be wearing this to work!

You can easily tie dye at home and it does not need to be messy or cost a lot of money. It can rejuvenate a white or light coloured top which may have a pale stain on it. There is a limit to what the dye can cover but my husband managed to dye a top black which had been discoloured with motor oil.

We just make sure that it is washed on its own. If the weather is nice tie dyeing is a good to do outside. I would like to dye some pink pillowcases for Sophie next time. She is still very much into her pink.


Monday, 25 July 2011

One of those Days..............

I dropped Sophie off at school today which is always enjoyable as I do not usually get the chance to do this as I start work earlier and hubby takes her in.

I then drove to Truro in search of my glasses, they were not at the building society so a little bit of panic set in so off to the Post Office which was the only other place we had been on Saturday. Just outside Truro Cathedral were lots of students all dressed up in their graduation robes ready to receive their degrees. It has been 17 years since I had my graduation, awful things those silly hats but you need to do it, to mark the end of the course and the start of the next phase.

I spoke to a very nice lady in the Post Office who remembered the bag I described, dashed off and came back with my glasses! Success.

Now, because I had arranged to met up with a colleague in school to do some planning for next year I dashed back to the car with the glasses and case in my hand bag and it was not until after our meeting that I put them on. I have been wearing my grotty spare pair you see. I tried them on in the shop to start with and they were fine as I was asked to look at the assistant so they could be checked for fit and that they were straight etc.. For a few seconds really, so it was not until I actually used them at work today that I realised that they had put the WRONG LENSES IN!!!!!!!!!!!!!

They did seem a bit different at the time but I put that down to the fact that they were clean lenses and not scratched anymore. I was not actually reading or looking at anything.

I have two sets of glasses, one for everyday use and another pair for close up work and threading needles etc. I was very clear that it had to be the everyday pair NOT the extra strength set. I remember that this was not noted down at the time. Guess which ones I ended up with?

That's right another pair of the extra strong ones.

I ring from work and finally get a lady on the other end to understand what has happened and my bloody mobile runs out of charge!

So I pick up Sophie, drive home and ring again. Spoke to a young chap this time and he could see what had happened and he was not even there for the original sale. Therefore, I will have to drive to Truro again tomorrow to change the lenses and go again on Wednesday to pick them up again.

Ok folks, at what point should I have given up with this charade?

If I had put them on straight away I would have.....................

*Not left them in the Post Office


*Would have seen that there was a problem with the lenses.

I didn't because they were wrapped up and put in a gift bag, for goodness sake!

The first few days of my summer break have been more stressful that the last term put together.

Please my bloggy friends tell me it can only get better?

It does not sound a big deal but a 30 mile round trip each time, parking and petrol, these glasses should be embossed with gold.

However, it is a glorious day today and I really do hope that it stays like this (and rains at night as the groudn does need it) as Sophie finishes at lunch time tomorrow and is really looking forward to playing in the garden every day.


I have heard from Inkberryblue concerning the giveaway winners but where is Linda. I have not had a reply yet so I shall give it a few more days then I shall pick another runner up.

Sunday, 24 July 2011

Giveaway Winners.......

My giveaway pictures are on the laptop that is being fixed so I thought that a lovely picture that I took in June would do. I have made a range of cards with many of the flower pictures that I have taken recently and sold them at work.

So, there were 21 entries, which is 4x the number that entered the Royal Wedding giveaway. Also some new followers which I am very grateful for and I have popped over and visited their blog if they have one. i shall be leaving comments too now that I have broken up for the summer and time is a bit more my own for a few weeks.

I used the number generator to help give me the winner.I used to help me.

I put in 21 which were the total number of entries and the number given out is.......

16: Inkberryblue

Well done and could you please send me your snail mail address.

Due to a higher number of entries and it is summer and I think it would be fun to have an unexpected second prize and the number generator gave number......

5: Linda Gilbert

So well done Linda and could you also send me your snail mail address.

I am going away at the end of the week so I would like to send your prizes before I go What is the prize? Something nice from my stock of items.

A good day today so work in the garden for us today.


Saturday, 23 July 2011

ATC July Swap - Colour my World Blue

I have signed up to take part in the Creative Swaps Colour my World July ATC swap.I have decided to focus on the colour blue and various shades of blue. I decided to make three and three others will in time be sent to me. I used pre-cut ATC cards as I know that they will be the right size.

I put the cars through a sizzix bigshot with an embossing folder with flowers and vines, which I thought would make a good base. I then used watercolours to lightly put a wash over the top of the embossing. gave a depth of colour. Some white is showing through and I hope that is ok as I have sent them off and then had an awful thought. I am very new to ATC etc, well I hope they are ok.

I then punched out some flower shapes and highlighted petals using a sharpie pen. Some navy blue tissue paper was added down the left hand side using PVA to give a bit of texture. Some 3D paint was added into which I pushed some beads.

Using the computer I printed out some text and added this to the cards. A hand stitched button to give a crafty/textiles angle to the idea.These ATC cards also come with envelopes so these were also passed through the sizzix machine and a light wash of watercolour added.Then to finish off I added my details on the back using the printer and some lovely blue textured paper. They were sent off today and will hopefully arrive at Lenna's house within a few days.

I really like making these little works of art and I would like to sign up for another very soon.
Some good news, I took my damaged laptop into PCWorld today and they have sent it off to have the screen fixed. Hurrah, just hope it does not go missing. oh I am such a cynic, sorry. Then Sophie left my brand new glasses in the building Society today at a cost of £188 pounds. I have emailed an employee who gave me her card when I opened an ISA saying I would be in early on Monday. I so hope they are still there, I have not even worn them, I have waited two weeks for them. They are still in the packaging and I only asked her to hold them so that I did not drop them whilst writing out a cheque. So you gain with the one hand and loose with the other. There you go.....

It is lovely weather here today, do I dare to hope that we may actually have a summer this year, shuushhhh, perhaps we should only hope and not say anything out loud!

Take care


Thursday, 21 July 2011

Opps I did it again........................

A nice calming picture of flowers needed for this post.

The week started with me having the first day off in 17 months to see the Doctor about a nagging hip. leg/back issue which is so painful at times it is like sitting on a sharp stick, can not stand and walking around work is ok but by the end of it I can only just get myself in the car to come home!

Tuesday was ok and no problems just need to remember to take the tablets that the Doctor gave me. Too much paper work and emails arriving for next year already. Wednesday was full of rain, in fact I think Tuesday was as well. I did mange to get to my little sewing group and I have started to make some nice light and airy cushion covers the brighten up the living room. No pictures to show just yet.

Today it was a walk to the cinema to watch Kong Fu Panda 2 with students who have won awards for achievement. The film was quite funny and the animation is excellent.

Walked back and the old leg was playing up again. People tidying their rooms and items being dumped in mine, but we shall not go there now.

Then disaster struck!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

My netbook fell off the table in its case, screen side down on to a hardwood floor...........................

The screen is broken in the left hand corner and a hair line crack goes up towards the top right hand corner. I can plug it into a flat screen at home but that is not very helpful at work.

Added to this after three years I decided to stop the monthly insurance payments only last Saturday! I should have seen this coming really I suppose. I am not sure if it has come into effect yet so we are going to go and see tomorrow.

I am not going to cry or get upset, it has been a long year and for most of it very stress free. I do have problems sleeping due to stress and I have not experienced this for over a year. So I am not going to let this ruin things.

My only problem is that my broken netbook is XP so is the network at work and practically all new netbooks are Windows 7. Could be a compatibility problem there but I shall have to get round it.

It is Friday tomorrow and the end of term. I have a stack of work to do as usual, believe me we do not have 6 weeks of doing nothing. In fact I am going into work next Monday and Tuesday because Sophie is still at school anyway. Then it will be off to sunny Seaford again for our holidays.

Do not forget to add yourself to the giveaway which ends on Saturday 23rd July. Lots of entries this time. Brilliant.

Take care


Sunday, 17 July 2011

Sophie's Homemade Dessert

Click here to Enter Giveaway.

School breaks up next Friday for me, a couple of days early due to us working some INSET evenings. Sophie finishes the following Tuesday, but we are both getting into holiday mode which means Mummy and Daughter cooking time. Plus sewing etc as well.

So for this dessert (and a good way of getting some more milk inside her) you will need an Angel delight mix, you can get sugar free versions, some biscuits, large dessert glasses or bowls, milk and some fruit.
Put the biscuits in a bag and using a rolling pin crush them into bits. Not too much otherwise you will simply have a bag of powder! Sophie liked this bit, thank goodness hubby put the counter on securely.

Add the biscuit to each glass.

Cut up the fruit into chunks. We have taught Sophie to use a small knife safely and she is very good at it. Supervised of course. Add some of the fruit to the glasses.

I loved Angel Delight as a child and it is so easy to make and is a nice change. Just follow the instructions on the back. Makes a good alternative to Jelly at a kids party as it can be made the day before and refrigerated.

Whisk in the milk until the Angel Delight is fluffy and can form peaks.

Carefully spoon some of the mixture into the glasses on top of the biscuits.

Add some of the chopped strawberries into the glasses.

Spoon in the rest of the mixture and level off the top.

Hopefully you will be the layers of the biscuit, fruit and mixture.
We then popped them in the fridge until tea time.

Just before serving another strawberry was popped on top with some chocolate sprinkles to finish.

Yum! Yum!

Go on....give it a go with your own preferred fruit etc.


Keep Calm and ....keep marking

Picture by Indigo Blue (copyrighted)

Enter giveaway click here.

I really do like my little digital canon camera, just look at the picture above. Anyway drooling over, just to say that I am over half way through my marking and there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Many thanks to those of you who have entered my giveaway so far. Just one more week to go and I have moved the follower button up the blog so that you can find it more easily. Come on folks, a few more entries just to make it interesting. Just see the post below.


Sunday, 10 July 2011

Giveaway announced- 700 Posts! long last here is my 700 post (well I am actually over that now, it is nearer to 715) giveaway. After the suggestions I decided to rustle up some more cards and scout around for some items to add to the package. I will have another one soon in which I will offer a book based on some of the blocks that I have made but we shall look at that another time. My exam marking got in the way a bit too.
One suggestion was to included one of my hand stitched re-usable book covers. The cover slides off and can be replaced with another.It is A6 in size. I have included a bit of give in the sides too.

I have included a bag of buttons suitable for crafts, card making, adding details etc, plus some cross grain ribbon and ordinary ribbon, ( I may add to this) each bit is approx 1 metre long.

There is a fat quarter of Amy Butler Daisy chain fabric, a key fob that is also made using Amy Butler fabric plus one of my Indigo Blue pin badges.

Finally, 5 cards. The rose one in the front is a picture that I took of one of my roses flowering in my garden. I do have another card to card but I thought time was ticking so I shall add that to the parcel. There is a range here, For Him , For Her, sweetheart, child and perhaps a Thank You too.

I never thought that i would ever reach this number of posts so I have tried to put together a much bigger bundle.

So, down to the nitty gritty.....

Giveaway Entry.

*Firstly I must be able to contact you to let you now that you have won. If you do not have a blog etc then please leave your email address or some way of contacting you in the comment section.

*Click on my follower badge in the margin, I would like to visit yur blog in return.

*Leave a comment, anything you like such as Hello.

*Put a link to your own blog if you want to so others can pop over and visit.

*If you want to post about this give away with a link to here then you will get an extra entry, but you do need to let me now in the comment section. It means that you will be entered twice and the random generator will still make it fair.

*I shall draw the winner in two weeks time due to lots happening here and to enable plenty of people to enter. So come on and make a good go at this, not many people entered my last one and it is much more fun with more people. it only takes a comment.

*Deadline for entries is Saturday 23rd July at midnight to give oversea visitors a chance.

I have managed to get on with my marking today and hopefully will meet my first deadline tomorrow evening.

Take care and have a good week.


Friday, 8 July 2011

An arty treat...

I plan to sign up for an online watercolour sketchbook course over the summer holidays. I have been thinking about it for some time. It is hosted by Alisa her sketchbooks and ideas are so eye catching and inspiring her blog is a joy to look at.

I had a paint box which I bought a while ago but you can not replace the colour bits and try as I might I could not track down any paint shapes that would fit. So I decided to get a new one and I gave my old one to Sophie who is thrilled with it. The paint box had a little thumb loop on the back and she thinks this is "so cool".

After much searching both locally and on the Internet plus a bit of dithering in the process I settled on this set and I found it on Amazon.
Each colour can be replaced separately and re-arranged should you want to. There are dividers which come out should you want less paint and more space to put other things such as a rubber. It comes with a pencil.

There is also a thin retractable paint brush and putty rubber. Now I used putty rubbers at college and never really got on with them. So I cut it in half and made room for a mini black sharpie pen and a sharpener. I am really pleased with it and it fits easily in my bag but also my handbag. I have already used it for my sketchbook challenge work and I have signed up for an ATC swap, which I must get on with.

I have been a bit absent this week as I have decided after a four year gap to take up exam marking again. The principal of marking is fine, I have over ten years experience, what I have been getting used to it marking online with a computer. There have been words hurled at my computer but I think we are now much better friends today.

I have finished making some items for my 700 post giveaway based on the suggestions made and it shall be posted this weekend.

Many thanks for visiting even when I am not around, it is appreciated.


Sunday, 3 July 2011

I took part in a Charity Gig Race in Newquay..

For those of you who may not know what a Gig is the picture above is from Google images and also happens to be one of the boats used by Newquay Rowing Club.
A colleague at work emailed asking if anyone would be filling to help fill a boat, along with experienced rowers, for a charity race to help raise money for South West Cornwall Hospice Care. Thought about it and after a chat with Hubby emailed back and said yes. I have had a bit of a go canoeing and I got quite good at the old Hawaii Five-O bit but I have never rowed in a Gig before. We were told not to worry about it, we would be shown how to row and have experienced club members with us.

We were given a quick run down on some do's and don't's what the wooden pins were for, and what to do if you catch a crab. I was yet to fully find out what that bit meant!

I am the one standing with the long sleeves. Being fair it does not take much for me to burn and I was not taking any chances. Getting the gig in the water was a careful operation which included some little two wheeled trailers.

It was such a hot day, about 26 degrees today, so going up to the knees in water was a nice relief.

You can clearly see the name of the gig here. They are made from solid wood, although there were two fibre glass ones. One of the Gigs was over 100 years old.

The chap here is called Steve and he has rowed many times and had been brought in as the muscles to help. You might be interested to know that he is blind and the strokes were called out for everyones benefit to help us all keep in time which really helped.

Getting in the boat was easy........getting that oar upright was not, it is bloody heavy!!! Needed help so as not to hit anyone with it. Look at the clear water. A lovely day for mucking about on the water.

A perfect day in Cornwall. Getting ready to move...........just got to get these ores in the right place using the wooden support pins on the side of the gig.

We started to head out t0 the sea getting instruction and guidance as to what to do. We went out a long way and it is really surprising just how quick they move.

We were going along quite well, picking up speed then all of a sudden the oar shot out of my hand, I kept hold of it, it then shot back my way as it caught the water and the end of the oar thumped into me next to my shoulder and pushed me off my seat onto the bottom of the gig.

That is what "catching a crab" is. It did seem more like a full size killer whale the force at which that ore came back at me.

I simply did not get the oar out of the water fast enough after completing the stroke. It was one of those times when you know what you have done as soon as it happens kind of thing.

I shall have a massive bruise on my chest and I already have a colourful bruise on my rear end!!! It is going to be all colours of the rainbow.

Then............I did it again!! Just as well the chap behind could not see as my descent was not pretty and trying to untangle myself was not easy especially as I got the back of my waistband caught on a hook as I was trying to get up and I was still trying to hang on the ore while everyone else is still rowing!! Managed it, to a "Good recovery there, keep going....." from the front of the Gig. Got back on my seat vowing that it was going to be the last time, crikey, the race had not even started yet.

We kept going to the start line and in all of the spare water there was in the sea there was this orange buoy, and we managed to hit it with our oars!!

Things were looking good eh? We did have a laugh about that though.

We tried to line up, which is not easy and the start was a bit quick but we made a good start. At one point we were in the lead but another gig got rather close and I had to stop rowing and I lost the rhythm a bit as I did not want to get my oar tangled up.

We went at full throttle. Hubby said that we were so far out that you would only see the ends of the oar flashing in the sunlight. It was hard going and keeping in time is definitely the hardest part as a beginner.

You certainly need stamina for this and keeping up the pace was tricky but because it is for charity just keeping going was the aim. If you miss timed just lift your ore out and then slot back in again. Over half way along my friend lost her oar to a "crab" but did not manage to get it out of the water in time. It slotted under the ore in front. It was ages before she got it back, how I do not know as I was too busy looking back at mine because I no longer had hers to keep in time with.

Then a big hooter sounded and we had reached the finish line.

It was good fun and I would give it another go but I would like some proper lessons as making my first go in a Gig during a race was a bit full on!

Best bit was......I stayed on my seat!!!

Get the Gigs back on shore meant having to get that ore up in the air again. I had nothing left in my arms so I had to slide it done the gig instead, narrowly missing two people.

A chap from the local paper asked to take a picture so we lined up in the boat. We shall have to try and track that down as we do not live the catchment area for that newspaper.

Next, we needed to put the Gig away. Looked fairly easy until we got to a stone tunnel with a 30-40 degree angle. Pushing it up to the top was not easy. One of the trailer wheels ran over my foot as the person next to me did not move fast enough but luckily the tyres are quite soft so no damage done.

We were all thanked for our efforts as it takes a bit of nerve to get in a Gig and race with experts and try and keep up. The charity rowers were of all ages and I am pretty pleased that at the age of 41 I kept up and did not disgrace myself. I might have even earned a little bit of street cred on Sunday.

It has to be the biggest thing I have done outside of my comfort zone, but every now and then I like to try and buck my own trends.

I just hope that I can get up and go into work without too much trouble.

Happy Sunday


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