Handicrafts by Kate Perry and other ramblings

Wednesday, June 27, 2012


Better late than never, I am finally posting a photo or two of my workspace today. If you like taking a sneak peak into other folks craft rooms, hop over to Julia's blog , and join in the fun.

My desk is a bit different today because my room is at the rear of the house where it gets the full sun every afternoon, and it is becoming too hot to work in there, so I was looking for something that I can do out on the terrace, where there is often a light breeze to keep things more comfortable. I suddenly had the bright idea of tackling a new bobbin lace project. I haven't done any for ages, but over a year ago I bought a kit (pattern and bones/frame) to make a fan, and I really want to give it a go. So this morning I dragged out my box of lace bits and bobs, several rolls of bobbins, and boxes of threads. I pinned the pattern onto the pillow so I could estimate how many pairs of bobbins I might need, and I think it's around sixty pairs. 

The worst task at the start of a project is winding the bobbins. I have done two dozen pairs so far, so there's still a few to go! I got distracted sorting through my bobbins, and pairing them up. They are so lovely with a wide variety of wood and design, and the pretty 'spangles' hanging from them. I had a go at renewing the spangles on a couple of pairs this morning, and it was a lot harder than it looks!

The rest of my room is much as usual with a stack of things to put away on my tray, and every corner filled with boxes, folders etc. I have moved my box of copic markers from the top of work surface to underneath the desk. I realised yesterday that at certain hours of the day they were in full sunlight which probably isn't a good idea. So now they are in a darker corner, but still easily accessible when I need them. Next to them are a couple of folders stuffed with decoupage sheets, acetate, shrink plastic etc.- all the stuff I couldn't fit into the drawers!

Of course, in the background are the two furry ones. They are never far away. On Monday, the grey one had a run in with the dog we are looking after for a couple of weeks, while our friends are on holiday in UK. He is wonderful with our two dogs, but cats are a different matter. Fortunately we were on hand to separate them when the fight broke out, and I have to say, my Baggins came out on top! However, he was a bit traumatised and is spending even more time than usual in my craft room now. And hopefully Barney, the dog, has learned his lesson and will leave the cats alone for the rest of his stay.

And finally here is the one thing that keeps me sane in here right now. The floor fan, switched off for the photo, is on all the time, as well as one on the ceiling, which makes paper crafting a tad difficult, but I wouldn't survive in here without them. I am sure most of you are saying 'Why is she complaining about the sun', but actually I am not complaining, I love it, but we have a red, heatwave alert on our forecast for the rest of this week, with expected temperatures of at least 36º in the shade (that's around 96ºF), so a drop of English rain would be a welcome relief.


inkypinkycraft said...

The lace bobbins look so pretty..would not have a clue! Have a great week trace x 58

Annie said...

Oh Kate your post has made my day. When my girls [now 27 and 28] were little I went to bobbin lace classes [God knows where I found the time!] and I still have my cushions and all my bobbins. I think I would need a refresher course now to do it again but you've brought back lots of happy memories so thanks a lot.
A x #83

Redanne said...

Kate, I have not seen bobbin lace for years and years now, please do come back with the finished article as and when, would love to see it, would love to watch you do it but alas you are too far away. We have had some sun today!! YAY! Happy WOYWw, Anne x #37

Di said...

Hi Kate

Your WOYWW comment did my heart sooo much good.

Fab posting and perleeease can I come and live with you? I'd mow the grass, play with the dogs and do the ironing :)

Love and hugs, Di xx

fatmonica said...

I saw some lace bobbin work at the church fair a few months ago and I was amazed at how intricate it looked and how complicated the bobbins looked.I can't wait to see how this fan develops.

Jean Straw said...

I'm pleased to see you have made a start on making your fan, can't wait to see it finished. Jean x

Lunch Lady Jan said...

Goodness, but you must have some patience to do bobbin lace - I'm ashamed to say I just couldn't do it...even winding the bobbins up would tax me *sigh*.. But I would really love to see what you end up achieving.
BTW, I'd have a fan on continually, I don't do heat :)
Hugs, LLJ #3 xx

TeddyBobCrafts said...

Happy WOYWW. My sister used to do bobbin lacemaking and I always wanted a go. Ali x #66

MaxineD said...

WOW - that looks as though it may be one whole lot of work - torchon lace?? It's ages since I have had anything on my pillow.... and yes, 60 pairs is a fair number to wind by hand :-).Spangling is time consuming and a tad tricky!

Shoshi said...

Oooh lace making, Kate! How lovely. However, kitties and lace making do NOT mix. They have their own interpretation of what lace means, and once they get their paws on the bobbins, it's anyone's guess what lovely abstract patterns they will come up with!!! I tried Honiton lace once but found it too much of a fiddle and not that satisfying because you've got to be pretty advanced before you can design your own patterns, which is what I wanted. You can see some stunning examples on my recent Exeter Museum visit blog post - Honiton was the finest, and most expensive, of all lace. I love the principle of it, and working the bobbins is addictive. Maybe one day I'll take it up again, but something more sensible than Honiton!!

Sorry your kitty had a run in with a dog. Very distressing, and I'm not surprised he wants to stay close to you.

Thanks for your lovely comment, and I have rested all week (enforced, no choice!) and today I am starting to feel half-way human again. I take full responsibility for getting like that because I knew full well that I was overdoing things, but once in a while you've just got to go for something you really enjoy, and suffer the consequences! It was so worth it. I just have to be careful not to make a regular habit of it or the consequences could be severe and not reversible, but once in a while is OK! It was a great day and I'm really glad I did it.

Happy belated WOYWW,
Shoshi #15

peggy aplSEEDS said...

a very belated happy WOYWW! those bobbins look very interesting although i wouldn't have any idea how to use them. beautiful cat!
thanks for sharing!
peggy aplSEEDS