Before and After

This week at work we were jokingly discussing what we’d do for a living if we couldn’t do our current jobs (i.e. publishing). I would definitely open a craft shop. Of course, you need a lot of handy revenue to buy a shop, and I lack fundamental accountancy skills to manage such a venture, so it would probably fold within a week… Added to that, I’m probably not as good at crafting as I like to think. Every project I embark on takes twice as long (at least) as I think it will, as I get distracted and lose dedication and will-power to continue.

These last few months I definitely bit off more than I could chew with a reupholstery project. I bought a very manky looking, but structurally sound, dressing-table stool from a charity shop (see below) and proceeded to strip off the old fabric. In fact, reupholstering was the easy part. Sanding the legs down in order to paint in a french-chic ivory without possessing an electric sander was hard work. Certainly good for the old arm muscles though… In the end I became impatient and in my eagerness to paint broke out with a paintbrush. The end result is satisfactory though. The joke in our house is that I’m buying things for my “bottom drawer” for when I move out. This won’t fit in any drawer I own, but I can envision it in my own place, along with the antique chair from Lewes.

“Now… What would France with Us?”

I’m blogging today for many reasons: because it’s been a long time since I did so (as reminded by some good friends!), because I have finally finished some long-standing craft projects and because, bitterly, I’m trying to block out Wales’ defeat to France in the semi-final of the rugby world cup. C’est la vie, I suppose.

The late spell of Indian-summer heat saw me in the back garden painting furniture (a blog on a renovated “upcycled” charity shop stool yet to come) but, conversely, I was also stricken down by a pathetic mini version of man flu which confined me to the lounge and to my crochet hooks… The result? Mission: Crochet Blanket is now accomplished! It’s taken me a year, but I’m chuffed with the final result. As with many things in my life, it shows that perseverance definitely pays off in the end.

Today I am also, in true Kirsty Allsop style, recommending Lewes for its gorgeous labyrinthine antique centres, where I snapped up a beautiful mock-French bedroom chair. And my doorstop (made with material matching my draught excluder from an earlier post) is now completed and filled with Welsh sand, from Tenby’s North beach, no less. Finally, for some Keatsian autumnal fun, evidence of what we’ve been growing in our back garden this year…

As a postscript, I really would recommend crochet to anyone considering it. It’s addictive and fairly simple in its repetitiveness. Youtube has some good tutorials. In the meantime, they say that idle hands are the devil’s something, so I’m moving on to cushion covers and bunting. Should be done by Christmas…