Friday, 29 June 2012

Repair * Reuse * Recycle

I purchased six used T-shirts for $0.50 each at the local charity shop. Grand total $3.00.... no tax.   There was a pink one, a blue one, a brown one, a stripey one and two black ones.

These T-shirts were beyond Repair, and definitely beyond Reuse, so the only action left is to Recycle.

After some strategic cutting and sewing, I have a new summer dress. The text says "Here comes treble" under the treble clef.... musical joke! Yes I know it's backwards.... it's mirror writing!

The pattern is from Linda McPhee.... Canadian sewing guru and pattern expert and star of Canadian TV sewing show (which I've never seen as I don't get that channel).

Sorry about the blurry photo. That's what happens when I try to use the camera and look into a mirror at the same time.

Update: Hilary awarded me one of her coveted POTW recommendations for this post... Woohoo!  Thanks, Hilary.

Sunday, 24 June 2012


I've always loved books.
My mum told me I could read a book from cover to cover at 3 years old. I'm not sure that's completely true. Just the feel and look of a book and the act of turning the pages as I read makes me happy. One of those electronic book readers doesn't have the same qualities.
When I moved house recently, I donated loads of books to the annual Library Book Sale, but I kept all the precious ones.

Above: The top two shelves of my bookcase. A collection of books, mostly obtained from used book stores, junk shops or Ebay purchases. The main topic? The history, geography and legends of my home county in England, Devon, and the West Country in general. And photos of course. My mother and her three sisters, Callum when he was a baby, and YoungerSon's wedding. And a tiny half timbered house from Alsace, a gift from The Equestrienne's sister who lives in France. Click to enlarge.

Above: the next two shelves of my bookcase. Books about Newfoundland, Egypt, Australia, New Zealand... some of my favourite places to travel. Top shelf on the far right.... two school projects I wrote about Canada when I was about thirteen. Books about quilts, stained glass, Shakespeare, photography. Bottom shelf on the right.... my collection of Rupert books.

Many years ago, my dad told me that he was the model for one of the characters in the boys adventure story book Devon Boys.
Victorian author George Manville Fenn (1831 - 1909) wrote this Tale of the North Shore in 1886 when my father was four years old, so it's unlikely that Dad was actually a model for the boys in the book, however, he had three older brothers who would have been close to the right ages. The story is definitely set in the area both my dad and I grew up, and my dad used to tell a story of boys playing with gunpowder with an unfortunate outcome, and a similar incident occurs in the book.
I wanted to find a copy of Devon Boys for each of my sons and I haunted used book shops and junk shops for years with no luck. Then one day I noticed a battered copy squeezed between old books on a shelf at an antique market. How much? Only $5.00. SOLD! Oooh! Such excitement! Finding the prize after searching for so long.... woohoo!
If the seller had known how long I had been searching for that book, he would have charged me more than double.
Now there are three copies of the book on my bookshelf. And if I come across another one, I'll probably buy it. I can't stop myself now.

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

Pink to Make the Boys Wink

Auntie J gave baby Emma a sweet little yellow summer dress.
When I looked at it, I thought "that's an easy pattern. Hmmm... I wonder if....."
Out came the tissue paper, pen, scissors. and pins. I had some leftover fabric from one of my baby quilts. Pink, of course.
I found advice on the internet on how to sew a neck placket. Never tried to sew one before.
My new sewing machine sews buttonholes all by itself. Whoopee!
And I had a button with a sparkle in the middle. Perfect!

YAY for me! I did it!
Canada's next Top Model.
So we had a fashion show.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

Border Crossing

He did it! I don't really know why he did it, other than the fact that nobody else has ever done it, but he did it! What a spectacle. And he was so calm and collected, no sign of any nerves at all. I was more nervous than he was. Just cool confidence that he was going to reach the other side safely. And he even gave a couple of interviews from high above the Falls.
And when he finally reached the other side, two Canadian Customs Officers were waiting for him, and he had to produce his passport, just like any other traveller crossing the border between the U.S.A. and Canada.
Simply a slightly unorthodox form of travel, that's all!

Congratulations to daredevil Nik Wallenda. You survived all the publicity and hoopla, and you survived Niagara Falls. Here's what the Toronto Star had to say.

With the Olympics coming up soon, I wonder if high wire walking could be made an Olympic sport? Nik would win the gold, for sure.

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Open for Business

New baby in your family? Check out my new Etsy Shop.... the link is on my sidebar to the right! I have some lovely handmade baby quilts for sale. And I take custom orders too. Tell all your friends.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

The Light at the End of the Road

The Equestrienne took this photo with her cell phone yesterday.

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Ed's Hardware

Have you ever bought a piece of antique furniture with a handle missing, and you can't find a matching replacement, no matter where you look?
Or been doing some refinishing and you need the right hinge, or doorknob, or key, and you don't know where to find exactly the right piece?
You need to spend some time browsing at Ed's Hardware.
Ed keeps his massive collection of vintage and antique hardware in an old barn located at the rear of his c.1880 James Lemon farmhouse. It's certainly a labour of love. He has everything sorted, packaged and catalogued. If you need it, and can't find it, Ed probably has it. And can tell you how to install it.

Ed can answer any questions about appropriate fittings for doors, windows, cabinets, and furniture, and gives valuable advice on caring for and refurbishing your antique hardware.

Shelf upon shelf of doorknobs, locks, door hardware, doorbells, screws, nuts, bolts, square head nails. It's a hands-on museum.

A few years ago, Ed was asked by a friend to help find a drawer pull for an old piece of furniture. He searched antique shows, garage sales and auctions looking for the right handle. After accumulating more than 2000 pieces, the search for the handle turned into a personal collection.

Ed thinks of the drawer pulls, screws, hinges, keys and door knobs as jewellery for the house, and the finishing touches to fine furniture.

Ed's customers range from the hobbyist to professional furniture refinishers, and to homeowners who want to maintain authenticity in their pieces of furniture.

Where does he find all these pieces? When I was there, at least two people were telling Ed that they had boxes of old hardware in their garages, and didn't know what to do with it. If you have a box of "junk", Ed will gladly take it off your hands!

And finally.... some good advice from Ed.