Sunday, 19 June 2016

Consolidation

This week I've working on various purchases from the past few weeks. It's fun to do the shopping and accumulating, but it does make my To Do list longer.

I cleaned up and painted with Smooth Black Hammerite the old Victorian gas lantern we bought some weeks ago, and also painted the wrought iron bracket DH spotted in the Newby Hall garden shop which is perfect for the lantern. Then I screwed the bracket onto the side of our brick outbuilding and hung the lantern. It looks quite striking and really adds some interest to a dull corner.


I've gone over the wooden base of the marble topped table we got at Newark with sugar soap wipes and rubbed it down with fine steel wool and wax remover which removed a lot of accumulated grime. I'm letting it dry before I touch up some bare spots with wood stain and then re-apply buffing wax as a finish.

I discovered an online framing store which will cut picture framing to your own measurements, so I've ordered some unfinished frame pieces to go around the stained glass panel from Newark, to stabilise it and allow me to mount it in a window. It just seemed easier than having to find a local source for picture frame moulding then try to cut my own accurate miters.

The twice-upholstered chair has returned, and it is so much better. The new fabric is a much better choice, and the new upholsterers removed all the inappropriate rock-hard padding and turned it back into an elegant chair with a much more comfortable seat.  The back is still a little bit hard but the guy said that with use it will also soften, and at least the horrible lumbar roll is gone so you can sit in it like a human being and not like some kind of lab experiment gone wrong. I'm trying it out as my new knitting chair.


While we were in Yorkshire we also picked up eight roman blinds which had been made for me at a curtain shop I discovered last year when I attended SkipNorth.  Unlike many shops near where I live, this shop was happy to make blinds using my own fabric (which I sent to them by courier) to my measurements, and also to hand stitch them instead of running lines of visible machine stitching along the face fabric to hold the rod pockets. They were also cheaper. We've been in our 'new' house two years and all this time we've been living with the stained and fraying old roller blinds that came with it. Today we put up the new roman blinds in three rooms and suddenly the rooms look like how I've been seeing them in my head for two years.  We've got one more room to do which is the lounge, but we need to move the sofas to do them so we didn't get to that today.

The new blind over the window seat picks up the green of the wainscoting and the raspberry red of the cushion.

The dining room looks sumptuous with chenille fans with a hint of old gold thread glinting in the light.

The bedroom looks so pretty in a William Morris fabric,  This is the description: "Tangley' a cotton chintz dating back to 1837 was produced by Bannister Hall on behalf of William Morris in 1868 and furnished Queen Victoria's private rooms at Windsor Castle. Soon after Morris was printing his own designs but 'Tangley' would still have been used mixed with Morris patterns in interiors and could still be used in this way today. Now printed on linen 'Tangley' appears to capture the block printed texture of the original and depicts a beautiful flowering peony tree."

DS is home now for the summer and his opinion is that I've turned the whole house into a giant dollshouse project. He may be right.


Crafts

I put some of the dollshouse things I bought in York into various houses, and also put together some kits.  This was a Jane Harrop laser cut kit for a  1:12 French wine crate, which went into my French gatehouse.



And these are two Petworth Miniatures laser cut kits for 1:48 bar stools for my 1:48 cowboy saloon.


I finished, for the third time, and re-blocked my Now in a Minute Shawl.  Starting with the chart for Wedge 3, I repeated charts several times to achieve a long taper with a greater outer circumference, so now I can wrap it around my shoulders and it will stay in place. It's still a bit of an odd shape but it's wearable and I like the colours.

On Thursday I made a little 1:12 scale ring pillow using the bobbin lace dollshouse doiley that I made a few months ago, for an online wedding-themed miniatures swap. It's gone off in the post to its new owner,  I hope she likes it.


And I've done a bit more shopping.  You've probably seen those foldout craft cabinets advertised in quilting and needlework magazines, full of clever drawers and shelves, and with the promise that everything will fold away and be tidy and hidden.  They usually cost a fortune, and I would never buy one because I wouldn't want to put everything away out of sight anyway.  But look what I found at a charity shop for £35.

Clever, isn't it?  Although pretty functional in appearance, it's in good condition. I decided it needed to come home with me and be appreciated.  I might keep my bobbin lace supplies and threads in it as currently they are housed in a plastic crate and an assortment of odd containers. I like clever furniture, so much more interesting.


TV knitting this week has been the Multi Way Wrap and the Que Sera Cardigan on which I finished the body and have now started a sleeve.  Commuter knitting continues to be the Lallybroch Sock and I have made it to the top of the ribbed cuff and am about to start the moss stitch folded cuff.

Oh, and I've been shingling the Victorian gazebo porch. The shingles that came with the kit are really rubbish with a lot of warped and miscut shingles. Luckily they provided lots of them. I just hope they don't warp even more when I get around to painting them. You can see the green colour on some of the shingles which I pre-painted before using them.

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