Saturday, 9 March 2013

Noro striped scarf and hotch-potch beanbag

Just to show you quickly a couple of things I actually managed to finish (still having trouble finishing things. Partner says this is because I go out too much and should stay in every evening and listen to him chatting to me about the problems he has had with the buses. Because apparently sometimes you can be waiting for half an hour - and then three come along at once!).
Often we find Partner lurching towards that bookshelf, muttering, oh bloody hell I shall have to look in Lewis and Short
I styled this photo and put the fibre optic lamp on and everything, I do appreciate we're still a few steps away from Apartment Therapy. This is the Amy Butler Gum Drop Pillow pattern (larger version), modified only slightly to make it more patchwork-y (I cut the main pieces in half, adding a seam allowance to use two different fabrics).
You name one single thing that's more stylish than a fibre-optic lamp. I knew you couldn't
Actually it is since I filled this beanbag with the appropriate beanbag balls that I have been Statically Supercharged so let that be a warning to you (thank you Lucy for the paperclip info, I will actually try it next week. Things have been so bad I have been having to wear my pole dancing shoes to work in case it is the soles of my shoes that are the problem, so now I am wandering about with pole dancing shoes and pink hair in a job where we deal with major corporate donors, I am taking bets on whether they renew my contract at the end of the month).
I don't know why I can't get more excited about this. It's woolly! It's full of mad colours! It's got all my trigger points! I think I'm just fed up of anything that reminds me of winter
And this is just the Noro Stripy Scarf, pattern here - I am reasonably happy with it but I just find Noro a bit challenging. I think I shall have a bit of a break from Noro.

I don't know how to deal with my finishing-things problems. I think what I will do, is, I will go to Hobbycraft later and buy some cheap acrylic and crochet a cushion of such easiness and boringness that I can do it on autopilot while I am doing other things. Because, you can always use another cushion, can't you? (Or actually, I might have a go at this - it doesn't look impossible, does it?),

And one more thing - I wondered if you had seen this craft book/ magazine review on the Guardian website? I have the book reviewed in the middle, Granny Chic (got it in The Works! Bargain!) - I like it for inspiration, there are some nice ideas and pictures, and I've looked at the authors' blogs and I actually quite like them as well. However I am glad this woman has said this because now I feel less like an evil bitter old mare saying what I am going to say: there is a strand in craft writing which is cutesy, twee, and escapist, and I find it difficult in large quantities.
Dan drew this! Isn't it good? The spire is intentionally crooked because it is Chesterfield and the devil sat on it
I mean, we all have our cutesy and twee moments, don't we - I visited a ginger kitten last week and sat cooing at him for an hour going 'look at you! look at your big pointy ears!!' in a way that was possibly not wildly edifying to witness - and I'm not sure I'd like someone picking my verbal mannerisms apart generally, but honestly sometimes I read things and I feel like wearing black, curling my lip, smoking a gauloise and muttering, do you people not realise this world is also filled with Passion and Death and Complexity and Pain? In the spirit of that, I shall make the following confessions to you. 1/ at least 70% of the time when I look at something vintage I think yes, but will that actually work/ last, I would rather have a nice new functional one from Ikea, John Lewis or Argos, and 2/ I have never knowingly used the word 'yummy' about anything that isn't actually food. There. I understand now if I wake up tomorrow morning to only one follower.

Last thing - my family read this blog and like to keep tabs and make fun of the things I do - so for them I state the following information. I have bought a Groupon for horseriding lessons. Have at it, family.


Stitched Together said...

I love that beanbag. I shall have to try the paperclip thing too.

I know what you mean about the twee and "pretty" part of the crafting community. The whole shabby chic just makes me go "meh". Why take a perfectly beautiful wooden chest of drawers and spray it with tepid colours and then sandpaper the corners to make it look battered and then stain the bits that peek through. It just defies logic and doesn't even look that good and snags on your tights when you get ready to go out.

Lucy said...

Actually you'll wake up with one more follower - me - because I am 100% with both you and Stitched Together on all things twee. Shudder.

Hope the paperclip thing works - I'll be here when you report back!

kristieinbc said...

I am going to be brave and say I love Noro. It is truly the cilantro of the knitting world. People either love it or hate it. Your scarf is terrific, and I am sure at the beginning of next winter you will look at it and think so too.

I am far too practical for most cutesy things. Beautiful yes, twee no.

Michelle said...

Totally agree! In fact, I'm going to say something I've never dared to say before - what's so good about Cath Kidston??

Anonymous said...

I am also among those who don't really like twee and cute, and question the stability of most vintage items. Nor do I want to take something I just spent time and money to make, and make properly, and then try to make it look like I've been tossing it around for years.

Anonymous said...

I say many things 'ironically' which then stick. So, I get an elbow in my side if (when actually, as I do it quite a lot), I say yummy. As in "I really want this wool, it's so yummy! I must also confess to being heart skippy happy as much as I possibly can. But you are right. I want a blog of my own, if for no other reason than a place of relief, so I can stop dropping humongously long comments onto other peoples blogs, while being too ashamed to write my name. But I am hampered by my lack of 'life-style' and downright slummy accommodation. What's more I like it that way. I moan, I'm angry and I complain. None of which are apparently welcome on these blogs. You have to be a happily married mummy with golden children to write them too (they tell you that in their profile) and never be mean like me.

I do like pretty and cosy, and yes sometimes I am all sugar and sweet. But I also have a side portion of poison along-side. I don’t see why there has to be this particular craft blog model. I am beginning to be a bit annoyed with it all. I mean there is never any mention of reality, of books, TV even – don’t they watch Coronation Street, any of them? Kids are perfect; husbands are men wonderful (a corruption of what one blogger does call her ‘hubbie’). Can the single parent or the childfree cut it I wonder? It’s all pay it forwards and giveaways and happiness projects (52 weeks of happy anyone – no please no, not another blog taking that up, ever heard of overkill?)

There is no death, no corruption, no inequality of the sexes, no poverty, so nothing at all to get worked up over. Just tea cosies and blankets. Don’t their halos ever want to slip ever so slightly so they can sound off about one of these? I am left thinking the worst of them – perhaps they vote Ukip? A writer's style all to often starts as natural expression but ends up being a parodox in an attempt to please. It ends up doing the opposite though in many instances.

P.s I love things that look twee but I don't have to BE it. I love shabby chic but can't be bothered to do it and my flat is too shabby all by itself, to accommodate any kind of chic. I don't like Cath Kidston at all. But I do like pretty flowers and pink. I often like what they show me but not so keen on what they tell me :(

I love Noro. So therefore I love your scarf.

The Foggy Knitter said...

It's an interesting debate isn't it? I have days when I find it all a bit cutesy/perfect and annoying and I am determined to share some of the reality of my life on my own blog (when I get around to writing anything on it). That said I am doing the 52 weeks of happy thing alluded to by anon, but more as a tool to challenge my own depression and tendency to think that my life is awful and nothing good ever happens.

There's been an interesting debate on some aspects of this on Karie Bookish's blog: lately

Susie - give your Noro scarf time, mine definitely works at cheering up dull grey days. You might just need a break from it.

Leah said...

Your Noro scarf looks awesome. I find constant-twee hard to stomach, but I also know that there are plenty of craft blogs out there that don't attempt to fit into that attitude/aesthetic. It is definitely avoidable.

Vivianne said...

I too have a Lewis&Short on my bookshelf :-D

The Gingerbread Lady said...

I hate twee but it shocks me every time I am struck by a bout of it. In part, I blame the Mummy Brain - seriously, pregnancy fries part of your brain and to your own horror, you find yourself captioning photos of your drooling baby on Facebook with cutesy quotations: "Oh, look, there are my socks!" Bleurrgh. What happened to me?

Anonymous said...

I hate the twee thing. It seems we're rapidly going backwards in time to a mythical era that never existed where women were happy skippy girlies without any of the attendant problems of real life