ScrapHappy July 2022

A billion buttons and what to do with them all…? Some match, some don’t. I prefer it when things don’t. I don’t do matching very well and I wasn’t about to waste my time sorting them all out.
I’d seen a friend with a simple multi-coloured wrap-around necklace with little buttons hanging off it; it was very striking and looked easy enough to make. I decided to use only transparent glass beads so the buttons would be more prominent. I’d also planned to make it long enough to wrap round three times but I got the measurements wrong so I get four wraps out of it!

I hope the close-ups make it clear how to get the buttons to hang loose – in case anyone else who’s been hoarding buttons wants to try their hand.

Apologies for the lousy pics, we aren’t getting much natural light this winter. But soon, soon….it will be spring :)

ScrapHappy June 2022

Another jeans-to-skirt ScrapHappy project – or to be accurate, a denim mini skirt that I’d picked up at a thrift shop and never worn. With my legs (and, let’s be frank, at my age) mini skirts aren’t a good idea. But it was in a R10-box of bargains and who in their right mind can pass up a bargain? So I chopped off the hem and added stuff plus a bit of stitching. It’s shorter than the first one I made, just reaches my knees, but looks great with tights and boots.

Battled to get a decent photo in artificial light (Cape Town winter too dark and wet and plain bloody miserable to be outside) so these are the best I can do.

The first half of this year has been full of hurdles so far, many of which I saw coming so attempted to gird my loins, but wasn’t in sufficiently good shape to handle the unexpected ones at the same time. I’m trying to reserve what little energy I have for work-related things, for obvious reasons, and the rest is just a bit of a blur. Perhaps some clarity is on the horizon.

Here are the links for everyone who joins the ScrapHappy initiative from time to time. If you also love using up scraps, contact Kate or Gun (the first two in the list below) and they’ll add you to the group.

KateGun, EvaSue, Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy,  Tracy, Jill,
JanMoira, SandraChrisAlys,
ClaireJeanJon, DawnJuleGwen,
Bekki, Sunny, Kjerstin, Sue LVera,
NanetteAnn, Dawn 2, Bear, Carol,
Preeti, EdithDebbierose and Viv

ScrapHappy May 2022

We’re solidly in the middle of autumn in Cape Town, but we still get to enjoy some beautiful sunny days with just a hint of cold when you’re in shadow. Nights and early mornings are much cooler of course, but the winter rains haven’t set in yet. The poppies and nasturtiums in my garden are sending out their first little leaves but they’re going to have to put up with a lot of wet before they see spring!

At the Spier Craft Art market, the ground is fairly thick with autumn leaves. Below the top level of the leaves, the soil is damp. Boots are needed, despite the sun. Boots, tights, scarves, and a new furry leopard print hoodie to keep out any surprise nasty cold winds.

Love my new jacket. Nothing like fake fur!

Anyway, enough of the weather, back to ScrapHappy. Many of the crafters work with beads. It’s easy to lose a few when you’re making things – and there was once a memorable occasion when Bongani accidentally tipped over a 2-litre box of black beads that he was using for a wire elephant.

The scavenger in me can’t help but give in to the temptation to scratch around on the ground for beads. Yesterday the pickings were particularly good, and at one point I was on my knees with a stick getting at lower-level beads that must have been tramped into the soil over many years of markets. I felt like a forensic anthropologist or archaeologist or whatever you call those clever people in crime fiction.

Once washed, the beads are good to go. I turned them into three memory bangles last night, and the only rule is that there are no rules – whatever gets picked up gets used, in no particular order. I noticed that there were more white beads than any other colour then I realised that this is most likely because they are easier to spot than darker colours.

There are a few plastic letter beads in there. I didn’t find a J for Jill so I get to decide what a letter may stand for. See the G? Today that stands for Grumpy. Grumpy because some twerp was in such a hurry to get in and out of the supermarket last week that she grabbed decaffeinated coffee instead of the real thing. How is decaf even coffee? It isn’t, is the answer. It’s ground-up brown stuff and doesn’t count in my book. Never again!

ScrapHappy March 2022 : upcycled jeans

I found this idea somewhere on the interweb recently and there are loads of similar ideas out there. Here is my version:

My apologies for the lousy photos, it wasn’t easy taking a pic of myself in the skirt in the bathroom mirror while balancing on a wonky stool.

I loved the original jeans but they’d gone all baggy on me so, instead of passing them on to someone else, I decided to try this. Next time I’ll cut off more of the denim but I’m happy with my first effort. I still have to take the waist in a bit, but after all the fiddling around I’ve decided it’s worth spending some time on and doing it properly. Going to use this tutorial.

The fabric I’ve used really is scrappy stuff – some are smaller sample pieces from a textile importer that I’ve sewn together first, the zebra is from a top I made about 20 years ago, the groovy blue/purple was in a box of scraps from a neighbour, and the pretty pink blossoms were also left over from a top. The handstitching on the back was just something to keep my hands occupied while I was watching the last episode of Endeavour, Season 8. Devastated to have come to the end of young Morse, I just loved this series.

I’ve been inspired to write this ScrapHappy post by Kate at Tall Tales from Chiconia. On the fifteenth of every month lots of people often publish a ScrapHappy post: KateGun, EvaSue, Lynn, Lynda, Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Tracy, Claire, Jan Moira, SandraChrisAlysKerryClaireJeanJon, HayleyDawnGwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, NanetteAnn, Dawn 2 , BearNoreenPreetiEdith and Jule

If you fancy joining, contact Kate at Chiconia and she’ll add you to the list. Any use of any type of scrap material is welcome.

ScrapHappy February 2022

I’ve meandered into making wire jewellery, mainly rings. Not quite sure how my interest swivelled from working with needles and/or hooks to pliers and mandrels, but I’m just going with the flow for now.

I needed some sort of ring display for the Spier Craft Art market and didn’t want to spend any substantial amount of cash. Solution: go to Pinterest and see what ideas clever people have already come up with. I found this.

So I made this, using old corks from – well, not hard to guess, since the market is situated on a wine farm! – and the thin wooden drawer that came from a jewellery box made by my grandfather. I use the box for other things now so the two separate levels weren’t needed anyway.

I’m busy getting stock ready for a local market in Rondebosch on Saturday, so have been up later than usual at night making more rings. They will be displayed in an old wooden box with a glass lid that I fitted out with dense foam and sprayed copper. Not as artisanal-looking as the corks but fine for a day.
I try to post regularly on instagram and facebook, you can find me there if you’re interested in seeing more of what I get up to.

Gratuitous information: Cape Town has been jolly hot lately, which is normal for this time of year but still something I’ve always battled to get used to. The temperature in Stellenbosch the other day hit 40 deg. It’s a three-quick-showers-a-day time of year. I dream of autumn days…

I’ve been inspired to write this ScrapHappy post by Kate at Tall Tales from Chiconia. On the fifteenth of every month lots of people often publish a ScrapHappy post: KateGun, EvaSue, Lynn, Lynda, Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Tracy, Claire, Jan Moira, SandraChrisAlysKerryClaireJeanJon, HayleyDawnGwen, Bekki, Sue L, Sunny, Kjerstin, Vera, NanetteAnn, Dawn 2 , BearNoreenPreetiEdith and Jule

If you fancy joining, contact Kate and she’ll add you to the list. Any use of any type of scrap material is welcome.