a bit of this & that

We’re back in lockdown again in this part of the world, which doesn’t make a great deal of difference to the husband and myself as we hardly go anywhere these days.  We’re happy to find things to keep us busy at home, and with Spring in the air, the husband is spending more time outside watching things grow.  He’s also been doing a bit of weeding and general tidying up, as well as supervising a worksite in our veggie garden (more on that another time).  While tidying up in the garden, he noticed an old plant pot he’d been meaning to repair but hadn’t.

I don’t know why, but the husband has a “thing” for crockery, china, and pottery.  A few years ago, there was a proper clear-out in the house opposite. Owner, very old lady, had died aged 96+, and her nephew was in charge of emptying the house so it could be sold.  The nephew was literally loading up the trailer to take most things to the local tip, when my husband spotted an old plant pot and asked if he could have it.  One thing less to take to the tip!  Said plant pot was just a very plain old thing and had probably been sitting outside for 60 years or so.  On arrival in our garden, it promptly got knocked over, by our very exuberant dog, and there it stayed for a few years, with broken pieces gathered together in a pile.

But no more!

The husband did his first attempt at “kintsugi” and plant pot has been replanted (with something or other) and is back out in the garden where, I hope, the dog isn’t going to knock it over a second time!

Gardening has never been my thing so, while I do spend some time outdoors each day, seeing to hens, walking the dog, and getting my daily dose of vitamin D, I prefer to keep busy indoors.  After a month of just lying around, my zodiac blocks have finally been sandwiched, pinned and are ready to be quilted.

Part of the reason for procrastination was: I couldn’t decide on what backing fabric to use.  I didn’t have anything suitable in blue in my stash, and I couldn’t find anything that caught my eye when browsing my favourite on-line fabric shops.  However, I did have a very sizeable piece of a plain “milky coffee” brown in my stash.  Not the obvious colour choice but it almost matches one of the browns in the xstitch designs, so I’ve gone with it.  Next job – decide how I’m going to quilt.  And also decide whether to make 4 additional blocks in same colours (without xstitch centre) to make this a 4 x 4 quilt, or to keep it as a 3 x 4 (or 4 x 3).

I have also been doing a bit of needlecrafting, and a small amount of patchworking (to be revealed on ScrapHappy day!) but my evenings have been spent diamond painting.  Have just finished my fourth diamond painting.  The husband doesn’t like this one but I do, obviously, or I wouldn’t have bought it.  Incidentally, bought on eb@y for 7.88€ including p&p.  Chinese seller, but dispatched from France so it arrived very quickly.

It looks really effective, from a distance, and reminds me very much of our cat, Le Bleu.  That will have to wait for non-essential shops to reopen for me to buy a frame.  In the meantime, I’ll be beginning work on a very big diamond painting project.

This is what the printed canvas looks like.  A very long, thin design which will finish up 24cm x 74cm.  I bought this one on eb@y also.  Cost, only 10.52€, including p&p, and I certainly feel I got my money’s worth here!

 

 

 

Diamond Dotting, not the husband’s cup of tea

I recently bought in some small diamond dot kits thinking it was something the husband might enjoy doing.  Kits sat on the counter for days before he finally found time/incentive to sit down and give it a try.  Not a traditional diamond painting kit, this one, but a notebook with design on front cover, all ready to stick down gems.

I didn’t hear him cursing & swearing too loudly, but after getting thus far, he decided it wasn’t for him.  I, of course, took over and finished the design because I’m totally hooked!  The finished result looks like this.

What is the husband’s “thing” (when it’s not good enough weather to be out in the veggie garden) is painting his tiny 28mm military figurines.  This is one glass cabinet with some of them on display

He has more in the living room in two smaller glass cabinets.  Not only does he paint the figurines, but he’s also been having fun with modelling clay.

Making his own buildings, water well and tent for props (I think the tent is made with dried wet-wipes).

A wooden fence (made of tooth picks) . . . and sometimes he just cuts a nice slice of wood, to set up a mini diorama.

 

 

old lady Singer 15K (what the husband is up to) #2

A quick progress report on the 1902 Singer 15K treadle sewing machine that came into our lives the other week, rather than ending its life at the local tip.  Once we got it home, I took a few photos (still covered in dust) to get an idea of body work and state of the wooden table.

A couple of things jumped out at us.  The treadle table, which has the flaps so machine can be folded away inside, is missing the wooden flap that folds back over.  At some time in the past, drawers were lost.  Base was also removed from the wood and reassembled back to front. Plus the dress guard is on the wrong side of the wheel.

Also . . . this model has a wooden pitman rod which is broken.  And worse . . . the rod/shaft thingy that attaches the pedal to the base is missing. So hmmmmm . . . more work for the husband than we originally thought.  Anyway, undeterred, the husband set to work dismantling the machine (no small task because of the decades of accumlated rust).  He also made the executive decision to remove paint.  On closer inspection the machine had been painted in black paint, covering the original paintwork & decals.

As black paint came off, we could see traces of the original black body and decals.  Looks like it was a Sphinx, which corresponds with model and date.

The husband now needs to get all the insides out from the main body, to do a thorough clean and plan is to strip bodywork right down to bare metal and give machine a brand new paint job IF it looks like it can be restored to working condition.  For the treadle problems . . . we’ll worry about that further down the line.

Since we’re talking about a 1902 machine here, I thought I’d share a family photo, which dates back to the same era.  Taken in 1907, this is a family photo of the maternal side of my heritage.  The baby is my grandfather.  Making the adults, my great grandparents:  George & Margaret Ann Miller.

 

old lady Singer 15K (what the husband is up to) #1

The husband has got a new project to keep him busy!

While chatting with neighbour the other week, we learned that the neighbour had an old sewing machine under the eaves, that he was going to take to the local tip. He asked us if we wanted it, so I went to investigate (slightly difficult to take photos as it was in amongst lots of other “junk”)..

This is what I found . . . and next photo what interested me most.

Serial number allowed me to identify this machine as a Singer 15K from 1902.   A very dirty and neglected Singer 15K that has seen better days, and we’re not even sure is in working condition, but no way could we let this old lady end her days at the local tip.  So . . . it’ll be coming to our house and the husband is going to have a restoration job to keep him very busy over the coming months.