Monthly Archives: July 2017

Scrap Sunday still (I never said I can only post one a week): Best buddies

As mentioned in my last post, I have, for the first time in my life, bought a fabric, last-minute, just because I had read a post by biostoffe that they had only a few metres left and that it had already been sold out in Germany.

So I bought 70cm of the – well lets call it – iconic building site fabric by lillestoff.  I felt guilty for being silly enough to follow a hype. But, I would like to point out, that I had asked my son if he liked it, before ordering. And he was at the time very into building sites and determined to become a builder one day (followed by a short yet strong firemen period and currently settling on actually being unsure about his professional future but we are once again loosing track.)

So, I made him a T-Shirt, using my usual pattydoo pattern.

IMG_5864

Quickly followed by a pair of Sachensuchershorts as seen in my last post.

IMG_5865

About 6 weeks ago, I had to make birthday presents for his 2 best friends, a set of twins, who were about to leave nursery (and therefore leave him).

A search through the fabric cupboard quickly led to the decision to make a pair of T-Shirts using up those last few cm of the building site fabric.

IMG_5867

IMG_5869

Initially, I meant to make non matching shirts but when I found those last bits of fabric, I thought it might be a nice reminder of their best friend and their time in nursery.

For the applications, I used freestyle machine embroidery rather than zigzagging the edges to match the style of the drawings. I guess I should not have used those precious pieces for practise but the boys won’t look that closely.

IMG_5868

IMG_5870

I really like the look of those two shirts and I am more than happy with my use of this particular fabric. I only have a tiny piece left, I think I have about two vehicles left that are still intact and could be used as applications.

 

pattern: Leo by pattydoo

fabric: jersey Baustellenfahrzeuge by lillestoff and stripy jerseys

 

Scrap Sunday: Summer, Sun and Shorts

Whilst I have been quiet lately, I have actually been rather busy and it is time to catch up.

I have recently found a rather cool way to use up scrap fabrics and also to make a first step on the trousers making ladder: Shorts.

To cut it short: I have used the free pattern Sachensuchershorts (” things seeker shorts”) by Fabelwald.  There are two types of pockets on offer, I have, so far only tried my favourite one.

IMG_5872

Eden collection by Hamburger Liebe and some stripes

 

IMG_5871

Fabric: Could be by Lillestoff, but I might be wrong. But definitely a left over of my cozy and slightly pyjama-y long sleeve shirt. And some stripes.

 

IMG_5866

Fabric: Lillestoff. I own it since ages, almost two years I would say. Initially bought for a onesie but ended up as at least two baby jumpers. Ordered in England, without knowing it was Lillestoff. Or caring about Lillestoff. And stripes, well spotted.

 

IMG_5865

Fabric: Baustelle by Lillestoff. This has been sold out quickly. I ordered on my phone, quickly, to make sure I would get some of this precious fabric. And yet more stripes in case you didn’t notice.

I had been a little bit unsure and thought they might be too short and too flimsy to be used properly but actually they are not. They have all gone through extensive testing and they get worn a lot.

 

Why I have gone all quiet

It has been a while, – not for the first time, I know – but this time it is for a reason other than laziness or lack of time. Writing silly things on a blog about crafting has become a bit meaningless lately. Things have happened, rather close by and further away.

Almost a month ago, I switched on the computer and saw a post about a tower block in flames. It looked like one of the many tower blocks in the area where I used to live in London. So I clicked on it. Grenfell Tower. For a few years, I have passed there daily on my way to nursery. I am sure you have all seen the pictures so I do not need to explain. Whilst I didn’t consciously know anybody who had lived in the tower, I know a lot of people who live right at its foot.

As shocking as I found those pictures, imagining all the people who could not get out that night, I am even more shocked about the non existing response by the Council of one of the richest boroughs. The same people I had to face when we were fighting against the closure of our nursery a few years back. It was the volunteers of a very strong community, or different communities coming together, who did all the work.

I could be sure that whilst I did not consciously know anybody who has lost his life in the blaze, I would definitely know some faces. From nursery, from the playground, through friends.

A few days later I saw pictures of missing people. And there she was, the lovely lady who was in one of my first knitting classes. She and her whole family had lived on one of the top floors and they could not be saved.

As I do not know if her family wants her to be featured in my blog, lets just keep her name out of if. She was from Morocco and she knew already how to knit. Whilst I struggled with the task to teach this skill to people who had never even hold a knitting needle in their life, with linguistic and cultural barriers (not every one gets my sense of humour). She remained smiling and waited patiently for something more interesting than my attempts of teaching a simple knit stitch. And helped the others around her. And this is why I do not only remember her so vividly but also used her as an example in all my classes later. Because she knitted “the wrong way round”.

Before I had met her, I knew that there was English and Continental knitting. But that was it. But thanks to my own classes, I have met so many knitters from different corners of the world and have realised that there are as many ways of knitting as there are cultures. Approximately.  And that there is not just one “right” way of doing it. But I have also realised quickly that mixing styles leads to trouble. If you do the knit stitch the Moroccan way (through the back loop, at least it seems to be the case after my extensive experience) you should do the purl the Moroccan way too, not my way. And this is why that lovely woman became so famous in all my classes. Even at a stage where I had to ban her from helping! Just by sitting next to her people started to change what I had just shown them! I always joked that she was messing up my classes and made her “sit by herself” and luckily she let me make these jokes.  As I said, not everybody gets my sense of humour. Thanks to her we had quickly something to laugh and talk about, the atmosphere became relaxed and fun and on a bigger scale she remained for me the perfect symbol of knitting as something that brings us all together, onto the same level, no matter who we are and where we come from. In that sense, knitting is community and unity and I guess, this sense of community is what I am missing most from my previous life in London. I am optimistic that the community affected by Grenfell will be strong enough to finally overcome the pain but life in the area will certainly not be the same anymore. I just hope that finally all the families affected will get the support that they need.

So, whilst having her in my class was kind of a short encounter, it has become rather meaningful to me and it also reminds me that I had once set up the knitting classes and later chaotic group-rather-than-class in an attempt to bring people from different corners of society together. And it had worked well, hasn’t it. I hope I will be able to create a similar place here, too. I will help me feel at home.

RIP lovely lady and all victims of the Grenfell tower blaze.