Weekly Photography Challenge: Relax

At this time of year, with the clarion call of “buy! buy! BUY!” ringing across the land, “relax” is truly a challenge! Cats don’t have any urge to do Christmas shopping, so maybe that’s why Morgen can manage to sleep most of the day (and night). Me remaking the bed was only a temporary interruption…

I like my old eiderdowns (I’m not sure why they got the name – there’s no down in them) with their sweet rosey prints. They’ve usually got some wear and tear (literal) that has to be underneath out of sight.One of my cushions was made (upcycled) from a Nirvana Muddy Banks tee-shirt (wear and tear again!). The back of it features photos of the actual banks of the Wishkah River, from our visit there 5 years ago (they really are muddy…). Sewing is a way I like to relax, but I like to get the tidying up done first, unfortunately.

Creativity:Making Scarves

Sometimes there’s a very long lead time before I can decide how to use a piece of fabric. Some years ago, I learned how to use shibori techniques with natural dyes, producing several delightful animalskin-like pieces of vintage blanket. I would pull them out every now and then to admire – but had no idea how to use them.

Then I found a sewing book at the Salvos in which there was a fairly short woven fabric scarf, which was fastened with buttons – and a light came on in my creative brain. My fairly short woven fabric scarves with button fastening look nothing like the one in that book, but it provided me with an idea that led to these Neck Huggers.

They are lined with taffeta or silk, to keep any woolly scratchiness away from the wearers neck, and feature really lovely old buttons to keep them in place. I had some pieces of tweedy fabric, also “too small”, which happen to have similar proportions. These are now Neck Huggers, too.

So, if you have some pieces you love, but don’t know what to do with, hang on to them! Because you will almost certainly find the right inspiration somewhere sometime, and put them to good use in the end.

Daily Prompt: Playtime








The daily prompt for today is “play” – what does play mean to you, what do you do? My play this week has been making pairs of  little over-alls (which are sometimes called ‘playsuits ‘) for Juniper. It’s been hot here in Perth, so any more than a nappy/diaper and a whisp of cotton is too much for a small baby. They should fit her for another month or so…

Last year, I had a lot of fun playtime making this beaded goddess – something that had a long, long lead up time while I collected the necessary pieces. Making it was a lot of fun, and photographing it was more playtime again. I wanted an image to put on a Christmas card, and figuring out how and where to get what I wanted occupied the best part of a day (off and on).

Children’s play is all about figuring out how things work – physically and socially – and no matter how trivial it seems to us, it is vital for their development and their understanding of the world. That’s why I’m passionate about not fencing growing minds in with baseless gender stereotypes. I don’t want my granddaughter (or yours, for that matter) to believe at age four that girls are limited to pink shoes and cupcakes (and the boys can’t share them), any more than I want little boys to get the idea that only mummies have what it takes to care for children. And I want grown-ups to feel free to play as pointlessly and  significantly as children.Juniper