Sunday, May 19, 2019

what we achieved on Saturday............

Between our house and next doors is this.  Although we have a gate on this side as well, we tend to use the other side to get into the back garden. 

 Not sure what the folk before us were trying to achieve, as there were no clear edges and it was full of weeds.
 There were a number of hostas and some other plants, which we dug up and transplanted into other parts of the garden.
 The weeds are just crazy in all the gardens and the grass.
 They left a composter, I need to sort that out as well.  The window to the left of the photo is the spare bedroom window.
We have full basements in Canada and ours is fully finished.  The window here is for our laundry room. 
 This is the after photo.  The sod is looking worse for the wear.
 I top dressed it with soil and grass seed, so as long as we keep it watered, it should be lovely and green in a couple of weeks.  Already it looks a hundred times better.
We had to take a trip to the dump.  It was hazardous waste drop off as well as it being a bank holiday/long weekend, we knew it would be busy.

When we got there we were at the 30 minute wait time, but in no time we were at the 15 minute time.  See the truck in front of us?

We were soon at the entrance.  Again see the truck......sort of figured that truck was going to be dumped, as it was a rust bucket.  Saw it on the way out in front of us, so it must be road worthy.........didn't look like it though.
We had 110 lbs of yard waste from digging up the side of the house, and it cost us nothing to dump it.  All in all a productive day.  Today will be as busy for us with more jobs being done outside in the garden.

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Guess what we are doing this weekend?

We are going to be busy in the garden.  Do you like our new wheelbarrow, $65 at Lowes.  Will show you the before and after photos of our progress tomorrow.


Friday, May 17, 2019

Breaking down the cost of the Sling Along Bag

Remember when I made this Sling Along bag, a couple of people said I should make this to sell.  So I said it would be too expensive and but I would break down the cost of making one of these bags.

On Thursday I went to the store to purchase the supplies for making another one as a birthday gift for someone special.  I will not be showing you the fabric I bought as I want it to be a surprise for her; that is why I covered the bill where the name of the fabric is.

Below is the list of things I need to purchase to make this bag.  There are a couple of changes I make to that list.  I do not buy the nylon webbing for the straps I make my own.  I also make my own bias binding, as it looks nicer.  I also buy 3 separate metres of fabric, as I need extra for making the straps and the binding.  There is a little left over and I can make a couple of small things with it.

Now the bill below is for all the hardware needed and just two metres of fabric.  I was given the other fabric I needed by the store owner, so that would have been another $20 plus tax ($22.60) on top of that.  
As you can see from the bill above the hardware for this bag costs $30 + 13% taxes.  
 Not included in that bill are the zippers, you need two so around $3.50 to $4 for two of those.  I don't use fusible fleece, but the thicker foam, which costs $40 a metre,  so we'll say $10  for the piece I would use.  Then the Pellon SF101 I use is $10 a metre, so probably $5 for that.  So we'll round it up to $20 for everything in the photo below.  Add in $5 for thread, which brings it up to $25.
To makes things neater we'll say $100 for the fabric and hardware and $25 for the interfacing/foam and the zippers.  I calculate that to be $125.

It takes me over an hour to cut everything out.......believe me there are many, many pieces to this bag.  I would then say it would take me at least five hours to sew this......again many different steps and a bit of hand sewing.  Hand sewing the binding on, which is the last step, takes around an hour.  So it will take me a MINIMUM of six hours to make this, realistically closer to seven hours.

Prior to all of this is choosing fabric, shopping for it etc all which takes time.

Now I COULD choose cheaper fabric, but it still would cost $10+ a metre.  I could choose cheaper hardware, and have it in plastic instead of the metal, but all this cheapens the look of the finished product.

So when Nora asked me to make her one I said no and made them messenger bags................

Now that you have read through all of this, what would you charge for a bag like this?  Are you surprised at how much it costs?

Thursday, May 16, 2019

Early Inheritance

When my dad moved to Canada in 1985, we gave him a picture to remind him of where he was born and of us.  I have always said to my dad if he left me anything after his passing, I would love the picture as it reminds me of him. 

The other week they were up and he brought me the picture.  He is fine and well, I did ask if there was something he hadn't told me!!  Here it is:


It's a lithograph by the artist Alan Stones and it is called Bluefaced Leicester.  A Bluefaced Leicester is the breed of sheep.  None of the farmers in the photo look like my dad, my dad isn't even a farmer; BUT his heart is in farming.

I had it reframed and new matting put on it, as it had seen better days, also back in the early 80's they didn't use UV rated glass and it had faded the print.

The artist Alan Stones is well known in Cumbria, and we used to live next door to his parents, Mr. and Mrs. Stones, Joan and Bill; both have since passed on, but have very fond memories of them.

If you check out his website he has many different types of mediums he uses.  I love the farming ones, as it reminds me of where we lived in Britain, but it's not to everyone's taste.

The picture is now hanging in our bedroom, so I can see it every morning when I wake up.

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Lovely kind comments.......

Thank you all for your lovely kind comments yesterday with the scary bunnies.  On Tuesday after I did my housework, I set about finding another bunny pattern and sewing some more bunnies.  I found this pattern for a Snuggle Bunny and I love it.  They are so cute, and best of all I made them all with flannel I had on hand.  The poor bunny on the left's nose is upside down!!

 Daughter-in-law gets together with some friends who have children all a similar age, so I'll drop over all the bunnies to her for the babies.
I then decided to make Liam a small messenger bag.  He is now starting to put things in and out of containers, so thought that the bag would help him with his dexterity.  I put one of the regular children's messenger bag next to his to show how much smaller his is.  There is a little velcro dot to fasten it.
Then I decided to tackle another of Carla's Slimline Wallets.  I had a little bit of fabric leftover from my slingalong bag.  I decided to use a piece of black/blue linen I had on hand for the outside.  I love this one.



All in all I had a good day.  Got housework done, found time to sew and then the sun actually came out later in the day!!!

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Flipping typical...........

So dh took Monday off as we are getting our evestrough/guttering and downsprouts/drainpipes redone.  It pours down so they cancel and rightly so.

I go to my class and there is no hydro/electricity.  So I could have hung around and "hoped" the hydro would have come back on when the hydro folk said it would come on (no chance) and go home and do the class another day.  I opted to go home!!

So I made three bunnie's.  They are not pretty, but for some reason our grandson loves them...LOL  I mean, do they actually look like rabbits?  Or are they scary creatures from outer space.  They look as though they are ready to do the splits?



 This one is extra scary..........LOL
I can't find the pattern I used so I am tweaking my own pattern!!

Monday, May 13, 2019

Mother's Day 2019

I was a lucky girl and my children and "R" gave me this for Mother's Day:



Not sure what I am going to make with this yet. 
I did Facetime with the two girls, and I popped round to son's house a couple of times, once to bring coffee in the morning (son and dh opening pool) and then later in the afternoon to see daughter-in-law (her first mother's day) and to see grandson.

When I went home I prepared supper and it was one of my favourite suppers.  Broccoli quiche, garden salad, quinoa salad and hard boiled eggs.  With strawberry and rhubarb crumble pie and cream.




The good thing about making all that food, is that I don't have to cook tonight.  I am out all day on Monday doing a Jelly Roll Rug class.  Here is a video on what I will be making, or something similar.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all the mother's out there.  I hope you have a special day.  

I'm going to share some photos of all the daffodils we have blooming in the garden.  The people who lived here before us, obviously loved daffodils.













Saturday, May 11, 2019

Fitzroy, Australia and lawnmower's.......

 When we decided to move from the UK  dh had a job offer in Australia.  At that time in the late 80's the soap opera Neighbours was a huge hit in Australia.  We ultimately decided that Canada was the place for us and here we are nearly 30 years later.

We are watching the series "Offspring," on Netflix at the moment, it's about an Australian Obstetrician Nina Proudman and her extended family.  The series is shot around the suburb (town) of Fitzroy in Melbourne.  I love the series and the characters, but most of all I love the houses in that area.  They are so "just me," so bright and airy and so different.  There is even a Pinterest board that shows different locations where the series was shot, here.  You can see different photo's of the lead character Nina's house here, it's gorgeous.

Just found a blog post here about Nina's apartment, so bright and airy.  I then went and googled houses for sale in Fitzroy and had to pick my mouth up from the floor...........here you check them out.  Talk about bloody expensive, obviously I know nothing about Australia real estate.  The exchange rate between Australian Dollars and Canadian Dollars is more or less on par.  

There is even a guide here that tells you where to visit to "relive" where characters from Offspring, shot their scenes. 

Now onto the lawnmower part of this post.  Bet you're wondering what one thing has to do with the other right?

At our old house all the gardening was taken care of, here we have to do it ourselves.  So ds gave us back our old lawnmower.  We got this one, I think three houses ago, so it was probably 15 years old.

To cut a long and boring story short, it was toast.  Dh gave himself a near hernia trying to start it, so I decided to put it on Facebook to sell.  The guy who came to pick it up was from Australia and lived very close to Fitzroy and knew the area well............small world or what?  So he took the lawnmower.  We went out and bought this one from Canadian Tire.  Electric start, so all I have to do is press a button.  Now it just has too stop raining!!








Friday, May 10, 2019

Something for the grands.........

When I gave our daughter her Sling Along Bag Nora loved it and so she called me and asked me to make her a bag.  It is way too expensive to make that bag (I'm going to write a break down of costs post on that next week) but I said I would make her another bag and asked her what she wanted on it and she said owls.

Remember the post from yesterday and the owl fabric?  I decided to get some of that.


When I went to the store they didn't have any in the teal colour, just yellow and red.  I chose the yellow owls, which turns out to be a drapery fabric, which is quite canvas in feel.  Luckily it was on sale for 50% off, but still cost $16.00 a metre.  Now as you know I have six grandchildren; the youngest nearly 1 years old and the other's between nearly 3 to 6 years of age.  When I make something for one I make for all of them.  So as there are two boys in amongst the six I knew the yellow owls wouldn't work, so picked up the fish print and I picked up the green as lining.  They were on sale for $10 a metre.  Those two fabrics are indoor/outdoor fabrics.  All fabric was from Fabricland.
 So what did I make for the five eldest, Kid's Messenger Bags.  I used this pattern but will give you a couple of suggestions and ideas.  The owl ones are for the two eldest girls.  The fish ones are for the two youngest girls and Sammy.  I did not make one for the baby.
 Super cute eh?  A perfect size for a child.  I used cotton webbing which I get from DailyLike Canada  for the straps.
 Now one thing I did differently was due to the fact I had directional prints and I didn't want my owls or fish being upside down on the back of the bag which would have happened if I had only cut one piece of material for the exterior, as it says in the instructions.   I cut two pieces of fabric which were 12 inches wide by 9 inches high; instead of 12 inches wide by 17 inches high.  9 inches high to take into account for the 1/2 inch seam allowance.

Now despite me doing this I still managed to sew one panel upside down😔  Luckily the front flap covers it, so you don't notice.  I put in magnetic snaps in three of the bags.
 Although I didn't, you could add inside pockets very easily.
 In two of the bags, I added buttons for closure.  As Sam and Jeina are getting the same print bag, I added a bird button to Jeina's so it's different.  The owl one with the silver button is for Nitara.
This is a fun project, BUT my poor machine was not happy sewing through the many layers especially when sewing the inner and outer bags together where the seams and handles are.  I used a heavy duty Jeans needle because if the weight of the fabric.  

This pattern could be sized up no problem and I have a few ideas on what else I could do with it.