What’s cooking
  • Shopping
  • Weaving Kits

Accessories

Specs’ keepers renewed

The biggest surprise of the past couple of weeks has been the interest in my specs’ keepers. They are one of those accessories which disappear off the scene for awhile, and then for no apparent reason — return. And that’s what’s happened, and I have found myself stringing beads for hours on end for this seemingly simple creation.

Not that they are difficult to make, but when you no longer have nimble fingers, can be very fiddly and a source of great frustration, plus the occasional cuss, especially when — as happened to me today — all the beads fly off the thread into every corner of the room. Would you believe I have just found a dozen beads caught up in my hair too!

So for those who are looking to keep their goggles to hand, back in my Etsy store, as of today, a couple of new summery colours, and as usual, the possibility to contact me with your own colour choice. Use the personalisation box on the listing page to let me know.

Here’s the link to follow >>>

DIY emergency mask template [English & Italian]

For the moment I don’t have a photo to post, but will get one organised soon.
Just thought it might be useful to have immediate access to this mask pattern and tutorial so that you can supply your friends and family with community masks as requested by numerous local authorities at the present time.

They are NOT medical masks, but are in keeping with local community activities such as shopping and recreation where it is important to keep our OWN droplet emissions from spreading when we cough or sneeze.

Feel free to download for your own needs. In the pdf file you will find a template and instructions to make the mask — including tips for down sizing for children.

Mask kit available for those who would like to make their own but have little or no access to the necessary materials for doing so. Click here for details

Versione italiana

Make protective masks

Making masks — whilst it is not possible to make and contribute homemade masks to medical staff, it is possible to make them for your local community where masks are hard to find. In some places (areas of northern Italy for example), people are obliged to wear them outdoors, so in the face of the shortage, homemade becomes a useful source.If you want to have a go, take a look at the two mask patterns Spoonflower is offering for free, both accompanied by a clear video tutorial on how to make them. Scroll down the Spoonflower web page to find the tutorials towards the bottom, along with the mask download links.

I must reiterate that these masks are NOT medical masks and are intended for community use only.

Click for free mask tutorials

Fat quarter drawstring bag

Fat quarter drawstring bag


Looking for things to do during isolation? Here’s a quick and easy idea for a fat quarter — or any textiles measuring at least 50cm x 50cm you have available to use — to make a drawstring bag to use for all manner of things. Here are just a few suggestions — a shoe bag, a grocery bag, a craft bag, maybe to hold your latest sewing or knitting project. The box corners are optional. Download the instructions here.

Day for toting

houses-tote02Well this is only half the story… the bottom half in fact! One of my recent shopping adventures produced this fun fabric in very dark grey with fun stylized houses printed all over it. I knew I wanted to use it for something a little unusual, but just needed to think about it for a short while before true inspiration hit me.

And what emerged? A big, fun and very roomy tote bag with exceptionally long handles to pass across your shoulders leaving all hands free to deal with stroppy kids and/or wayward shopping carts. I even added a rigid fabric covered base (recycled card) so that you can safely carry that ready cooked lasagne over to ma-in-law’s when you want to make a good impression! Then remove the base and voilà…a pure cotton, eco-friendly bag to roll up and tuck into your handbag for those surprise shopping sprees which seem to affect us women so often!

ps. Got to use one of my gorgeous little embroidered “handmade” labels for the first time. Unable to find anything locally, I’m afraid these were sourced in Germany from what is fast becoming one of my favourite ribbon suppliers.

New frilly scarf

argentina-frillsJust added a new frilly scarf to the collection. The yarn for this one is a little different, though still with that lovely lacy effect, this one also has minute pompoms along the edging in a coordinating colour. Nice combination here of a dark mauve with the pompoms in a light grey/mauve. Very tempted to keep this one for myself!

Felt & knitted shoulder bag

felt-knitted-maroon002Just finished the first of several of these bags which I plan to make. Pleased with the result, and as usual, I love the colours! I like to make things which I use/would use myself, so inevitably I end up using mainly my own favourite colours. Obviously if any of you have other colour preferences, just give a shout and I will keep my eyes open and imagination alert for other colourways for listings.

Felting fun ‘Cossack’ hat

cossack-hat001Inspiration in progress – what say this should become??? Experimented with some washing machine felting yesterday and this is the resulting piece.

I was pleasantly surprised to see how soft the felted piece remained. As you can see, first of all I had to knit it up and then give it a fairly energetic whirl in the washing machine with some neutral liquid soap to get the felt effect. I could have continued with hand felting to flatten it completely, but decided instead to leave the piece as it is as I really like to see the knitted stitches in evidence.

So here you can see what my piece of mystery felt became – a sort of Cossack hat. I was really pleased with how it came out and decided to do some simple embroidery to decorate the felt crown, and to add a scattering of interesting buttons on the front area of the headband. I continued with the same colour theme of gingernut brown and deep blue throughout – for the embroidery and for the buttons.

Frivolous accessories

frilly-scarf002Just adore this new yarn I have used for this touch of glam on a cold day – a frilly scarf to brighten up even the plainest coat or jacket and bring out the feminine in you! Pretty, frilly and surprisingly warm in spite of its airy appearance. Love these colours too! I think there will be a couple more on the way soon. Must check out the other colour combinations.

Specs’ keepers

old-gold-amberFollowing an unexpected couple of requests, I have now added a couple more specs’ keepers to the collection. The one you see in the image is made with old gold silver lined Rocaille glass beeds and has an amber colour glass bead at each end of the thread and gold findings. The other one is a lovely midnight blue with cobalt blue glass feature beads and silver findings. I will be posting the image for that very shortly.

Made by Hand

When you buy something from an artist, you are buying more than an object. You are buying hundreds of hours of failures and experiments. You are buying days, weeks and months of frustration and moments of pure joy. You are not only buying a thing, but a piece of heart, a part of the soul, a moment in the life of someone.

by Giacomo Cinque
'La Sartoria Antica'
Boho Newsletter

Click here to sign up for our newsletter in order to keep up with news of the latest projects and upcoming workshop events.

Boho Shack Links

You can find me and my various creative activities through this set of links.