Friday, May 30, 2008

Darwinian, that's me

Every time I plant something I do exactly the same thing: I scatter far too much seed around, then a week later kabam! Hundreds of tiny little seedlings emerge, hopefully poking out of the soil and into the sunshine, eager to grow, little aware of the awful fate awaiting them.

I'll be outside, anxiously hovering over my pot (in this case rocket), when the Galumph will stop by. He'll peer in, sigh, look at me, look at seedlings and then say, "You know you're going to have to thin them."

"Noooooooo!", I'll wail. "I can't! I'll be a murderer of innocent plants. Don't make me do it!"

And the worst of it is that I only scatter so much seed in the first place because I so desperately want the plants to germinate, and figure the more the better. I'll be standing there with the seed packet in my hand and think "Oh well, bottoms up!", and before you can say Eruca vesicaria three times quickly half the packet is in the pot. But then my misplaced enthusiasm turns into this horrid survival of the fittest scenario when every single seed comes up with the goods.

Eeeeeeek! I'm so sorry, little plants. I'll just be over here with my eyes closed, letting you sort it out for yourselves.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Waste not, want not

Petrol prices going through the roof? Check.
Wages going up? Dude, don't make me laugh!
Of late I've been realising that our household budget only has so much give left in it, yet I'm also faced with the undeniable fact that Grumbles was still in dire need of winter clothes. Apart from her two tops and two pairs of jeans, everything else was bought/made two years ago, and hence are all sitting mid-calf and above her wrist. This is not only a very unfashionable look, but a rather chilly one.
So I put on my thinking cap, assembled all my scraps and got to work. Ta da!
(Scraps from here and here respectively)

Project specs
Ottobre Design Magazine, 4/2007, design #17
Fabric: Left over denim, left over Amy Butler cotton print
Notions: 8 buttons, found in stash

Monday, May 26, 2008

Rosy cheeks and so much more make life very good indeed

Almost a year ago (only two days over, actually!) the always inspiring Jane was pondering her own 'small pleasantnesses' - the little joys in one's life. Whenever I chance upon one of my own, I always remember that blog post, and spend a few minutes happily thinking of them: bamboo knitting needles, really good hot chocolate, the smell of freshly sharpened pencils, birch trees with leaves turning red, warm summer days filled with the scent of freshly mown grass, sitting in a darkened cinema, the shadows of trees on my bedroom wall, putting flowers in old milk bottles, passionfruit spiders, reading Anne in bed on a cold wintry afternoon, watching girls in cute dresses riding bikes, orange flavoured dark chocolate and getting on down to cheesy pop music in the comfort and privacy of my loungeroom.

Oh, and getting Grumbles up from her nap and giving each warm rosy cheek a wee little kiss.

What are your small joys?

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Drawing a name out of a ramekin...

...because I was too lazy to walk up to the bedroom to find a hat. So, drumroll please:

Congratulations, Audreyjay! I hope you enjoy the tix, and thanks everybody for entering.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

That book meme

I've tagged by the lovely Nichola with the literary meme, the rules which are as follows:
1. Pick up the nearest book.
2. Open to page 123.
3. Find the fifth sentence.
4. Post the next three sentences.
5. Tag five people, and acknowledge who tagged you.

Since I'm reading two books at the moment you get them both. Bwahahah!

The Unbearable Lightness of Being by Milan Kundera

"They took frequent excursions to the Alps. Franz would bend over, the girl hopped onto his back, and off he ran through the meadows, declaiming at the top of his voice a long German poem his mother had taught him as a child. The girl laughed with glee, admiring his legs, shoulders, and lungs as she clasped his neck."

Memories of My Melancholy Whores by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

(Um, only just noticed that this slim volume only runs to 113 pages, so you get that page instead.)

"It has to be, at any price, I shouted in terror. She hung up without saying goodbye, but fifteen minutes later she called back: "Alright, she's here." "

I'm hopeless at the whole tag thing, so if you feel like doing the meme, be my guest and tell them Jorthy sent you.

Speaking of all things bookish, does anybody have any book recommendations for me? I'm after something light-ish, with a nice bit of humour. Suggestions?

And, finally, don't forget to enter the competition. Go!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Miss Pettigrew Lives, I tells ya, lives!

Last Tuesday the Galumph and I had a date night, and trotted off to see Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day, and had a marvellous time. The movie was exactly my sort of flick: gorgeous costumes, wry humour, toe-tapping soundtrack, with a sweet ending.

So desperate was I to see this movie that I also entered a competition to win two tickets to it. Of course, a mere week after paying to see it, I won the bloody tickets. Oh, the irony! I never get to the flicks, and then when I finally get to see one, I also win tickets for it after the event.

So that's where you come in. Lucky sods! Leave a comment, telling me why you deserve the tixs, and you might be lucky enough to find them in your hot little hands. Take your partner/best friend/favourite cat! The tickets are valid at all participating cinemas within Australia (sorry everybody else).

What are you waiting for? I'll post the winner on Thursday, so chop, chop. Comment away!

Monday, May 19, 2008

The NQR Jeans

I have rung up all my friends, and issued them with the following order: If ever I decide to make jeans again, and start to shoot my mouth off about it, can they please slap me until I come to my senses.
It felt like everything that could go wrong did go wrong. The number of times my machine just grunted at me in exasperation, as if to say "How the heck am I meant to sew through THIS thick el cheapo denim?" soon reached double digits (there's a good reason the stuff was only $5 per metre, and trust me to find out why the hard way). I couldn't even put the buttonhole in, as the fabric on the waistband was too thick to even sit under the machine's foot! All my topstitching seemed to be crooked, and required unpicking, and then to be unpicked some more, and the zip - oh, it simply doesn't bear thinking about how agonisingly awful it was to put that in. And to top it all off the bloody things didn't even fit properly, so I had to unpick the waistband and put some elastic in the back. GAAAAAAAAAAH! If I managed to sew a seam without hauling out the quick unpick/stabbing my finger with the pin/jamming the feed dog on the machine/breaking a needle I quietly sat there, waiting for the herald angels to burst into celestial arias because it felt like a @%#$ing miracle.
Still, Grumbles thinks that they are pretty sweet, and happily tells everybody within earshot that her mummy made them. I guess that's all that really matters (although can you really trust the views of a kid who runs about pretending to be a rabbit? See second pic below)
But seriously - SERIOUSLY - next time the kid needs pants, I'm going to make like a normal parent and go and buy them. These may have only cost $8 each to make (yes, stupid me made two pairs), but they also cost me my SANITY. If anybody wants me I'll be recovering in the winged area for acutely afflicted sewers.

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Gone away

One of my beloved uncles passed away suddenly on the weekend, so I'll be away for this week, journeying back to my hometown to bid my farewells.

xo Jorth

Friday, May 02, 2008

Get cracking

Time to crack the whip. So far these jeans (admittedly I am making two pairs, a la production line style) have taken me 6 days, and I'm only just putting on the yokes. That means the fly fronts and waistbands - notorious amongst sewing circles as being the most fiendish to do and do well - still have to be done.

However, like a scandal-tainted harpy with her eye on the biggest prize, I am determined to get these done by the end of the week. I'm officially making getting these done the happening thing.


PS Nifty pocket, hey?!

Thursday, May 01, 2008

For all the sewers out there

And that would be SEW-ers, not pipes of effluent. I can see how that could be confusing, especially since I am wacky enough to potentially post an entry all about effluent.

Anyhoo, enough of the idle chit chat - let's get to the point. Looky see what I treated myself to last night:

Three miniature ladies! I mean, a vintage pattern. Ahhh, I couldn't resist! Look at the nifty straps! And the pockets that are gathers that are pockets that are gathers - so smart! I purchased it from So Vintage Patterns, and let me warn you now: that site is a dangerous place. It quite often sucks not only time but money away from me, never to return, but like a lover who can't resist the bad boy, I will happily concede that it's always, always worth it.
Red. Definitely the red one. With some dressy vintage buttons. Lovely!