Sunday, May 04, 2008

May Day Fun

Hurray! This weekend is a Bank Holiday Weekend which means that here in Britain we have a wonderful three day weekend! In ancient times we would be dancing round the maypole, electing a May Queen, dancing with the Morris men, and celebrating the end of winter with all sorts of fertility rites. I spent last night with my mate (M had gone out with the boys to a local pub where a friends band was playing) drinking wine, eating nibbles, watching DVDs and having a laugh. Saturday I went for a little supply excursion under the pretence of returning some books to the library. Well, okay, I did have some books to return and I knew there was going to be a fine (my bad) so I admit, I'd been putting it off or forgetting (I have a bad memory and kept forgetting to take the books out with me!) Anyway, my local library has gone all high tech! It's all self service! Scan your own books in baby! Wow! So during this technological overhaul they'd had a massive clear out of books. Pah, I'd missed most of them, but I did manage to score these babies. Vogue Sewing (in mint condition) an excellent book full of all sorts of information and instruction, and Teach Yourself HTML - I have very little HTML knowledge which is sometimes a problem when I want to do something on my blog template. Hee hee, I'm gonna be a code monkey! Well, okay, maybe a baby monkey. With a learning difficulty. Or a foreign monkey, with a phrase book. You get the picture!

Then I popped into our local electronics shop. I love it in there. All manner of gadgets and tools. I've got a deadhead solder tip on one of my irons so I wanted to get a replacement, and some more solder. I've pretty much run out. Anyway, to fit my iron, I could only find a pack of three tips which would have cost me a tenner. Yet, here there was on special offer, a brand new 30 watt iron on special offer for £2.99!!! What a bargain! I grabbed that up straight away, plus a pack of silver solder and some 16 gauge (very thick) copper wire coated with lovely deep pink enamel - hee hee! I love blokey shops! Can't wait to play with them. The iron and wire that is, not the blokeys. Then I popped into Hobbycraft for some ribbon and a ball of undyed wool.

The reason I wanted some undyed wool was to try Kool-aid dying. It's on my 101 list to try out, so I decided that the time was right. Today was the day. I had a magazine tutorial to follow. I had the Kool-aid, graciously sent to me in a swap by CraftDeb.

So whilst M was watching the footie last night I unwound the ball into a skein using my niddy noddy; then soaked the wool.

I mixed up some Kool-Aids into little bottles with nozzle tops. I'm a bit of a hoarder, and I tend to keep these Body Shop bottles with the flip top nozzle tops because they come in so handy for all sorts of crafty projects.

So I dribbled those colours randomly over the wool - I had intended a nice subtle blend of purples and pinks, but the strawberry turned out to be more red than pink and so I added some other colours too. Then I put a sheet of cling film over the bowl and nuked it a minute at a time till it was nice and steamy. When it had cooled down, I rinsed it once or twice in clean water to rid it of any remaining dye (although there really wasn't much to rinse out).

Then I hung it on the line to dry.

And this is what it looks like this morning.

It's not totally dry yet, but when it is, I'll wind it into a ball and admire it until I decide what I'm going to knit (or crochet) with it.

My mycology bag is going well. I think I may have just about finished with the body of the bag, now I have to decide whether to make a long shoulder strap going from one side over the top to the other, with a plaited strap (crochet straps are okay, but they streeetch!), or whether to make two short shoulder straps with some trim, going up the front. I'm also going to make a pocket. Probably one on the front with an appliqued mushroom motif.

I've experimented threading a line of ribbon through, so I know that'll work.

I've also edged the bottom of the bag with this very cute picot edging.

Love it! Ever made something that you think you're going to be reluctant to give up? I think this bag will be one of those items.

Tomorrow M and I will be heading towards the coast for our May Day Sea ritual. Hopefully it'll be a nice day. We'll have to get up early though because there is basically one road on our route to the coast and if it's a nice day, plenty of other people'll have the same idea. We're only going for the day, but I desperately need to 'see the sea'. Is this because I'm a water sign do you think?




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