Category Archives: Craft

ScrapHappy October 2021

I have more than one project on the go at the same time, as most of us do – it’s a blessing and a curse, isn’t it?! Sometimes it’s good to switch from machine-sewing to crocheting, for instance, or from beading to hand-stitching, but sometimes my brain wants to work on all the things at once. Result = chaotic mind (not to mention work space). I’m trying to focus on one thing at a time, make lists, plan my days, be more productive.

In the meantime, here’s my contribution to this month’s ScrapHappy initiative. I needed to shorten a jumpsuit (why are they called that? no jumping is going to happen around here, that’s for certain!) so I kept the pieces I chopped off from the bottom of each leg and turned them into little balls of fabric-stuffed beads and made them up into a necklace.

It was a bit overcast when I took these pics, my apologies. Over the last 30 years I’ve built up a goodly collection of embroidery and crochet threads, so they’re perfect for the wrapping part.

ScrapHappy is hosted by Kate in Australia and Gun in Sweden; it’s a day for showing something made from scraps every month. Here are the links for everyone who joins from time to time:

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

revised crochet scarf pattern – anyone willing to test?

Many years ago I wrote a pattern for a triangular crocheted scarf. I made it in cotton and used a contrasting colour for the edging. One of my lovely neighbours, Lindsay, modelled it for me at the time.

The plan was to make up a kit, including the cotton and hook, but it petered out – as so many of my plans are wont to do! I forgot all about it until yesterday when I was going through old files on my laptop and it seemed like a good idea to revise the pattern using acrylic instead of cotton for a change. It works up really quickly and I’ve already finished it (it’s being blocked right now).

Before I think about what next to do with it, I’d really like to find two people who would be prepared to make it. I’ve amended the instructions here and there, and may well have overlooked some things. If you make it using the same yarn for the scarf and the edging, it uses approximately 80g altogether (of acrylic, that is – I used Stylecraft DK). It might also lend itself to a scrappy look, I’m not sure. You’d also need a 4mm crochet hook.

If anyone is interested please email me at jamtartssa@gmail.com and I’ll send the instructions as a pdf. TIA!

ScrapHappy September 2021

I recently bought a motley collection of old beads and findings from someone on Facebook who was selling off her late gran’s bits and bobs (for the ridiculously give-away price of R150). I like that kind of thing – you often get a few fabulous surprises. To my amazement there was, in fact, a broken string of beads that looked suspiciously like garnets. I took them to a friend who used to work in a jeweller’s shop and she confirmed that they were indeed the real thing. I phoned the young woman I’d bought the beads from to let her know about the “valuables” but she said she didn’t want them and I was welcome to make them into something and wear it. I still haven’t decided what to do with them, but how lucky was I with that score!?

I thought I’d use some of the other stuff from granny to make something for this month’s ScrapHappy. There were a lot of little glass beads on wire and some pretty varnished shells with holes in them. I decided to turn it all into a scrappy boot wrap.

I’ll probably give this one to Karen. I started making the wraps with just two strands of beads to go round the ankle but I prefer the look of three (or more). She already has one of the first ones I made so she can add this to her collection. I’ve managed to list a few on etsy, will see if anyone finds them appealing!

Here are the links for everyone who joins ScrapHappy from time to time (they may not post every month but their blogs are still worth looking at): KateGun, TittiHeléneEvaSue, Nanette, Lynn,  Lynda,
Birthe, Turid, Susan, Cathy, Debbierose, Tracy, Claire, JanKaren,
Moira, SandraLindaChrisNancyAlysKerryClaireJean, Jon, Hayley and Jule.

back on etsy

The Kalk Bay market at the Brass Bell on Wednesday was cancelled – management decided it was too quiet to be viable (mainly due to lockdown regulations which still include curfew restrictions) until at least the summer comes and more locals start going out again and more tourists are able to visit Cape Town. As more people get vaccinated and case numbers fall, perhaps the curfew will be done away with completely. We can only hope.

I used the time I’d saved on Tuesday and Wednesday to restart my etsy shop. It’s something I’ve been meaning to get around to for ages, ever since I started working mainly with beads and playing around with fabric jewellery.

I’ve only got five items listed right now, but I aim to add three to five a day including some boot accessories. Perhaps you’d like to visit? Perhaps you’d like to favourite my shop? All fans welcome! The more the merrier!

this and that

I had my second Pfizer vaccination yesterday and had been warned that there might be some adverse side effects. But, apart from feeling flat and tired last night (which may have had nothing to do with the jab at all), I’m 100% this morning. A surprising number of people I know (and know well) are opting not to have the vaccine. I’m not going to judge them but based on what I’ve read I believe that it’s the most sensible thing to do under the circumstances, and I wish they would change their minds.

In the Western Cape province of South Africa, the provincial administration (under the Democratic Alliance, i.e. the official opposition party) has begun rolling out vaccination programes for homeless people, many of whom do not have ID documents or birth certificates. The pilot session was in Cape Town two weeks ago, and was very efficiently managed. This is really really great news! *

On Saturday Loraine has invited Vicki and me for a get-together at her home in Durbanville to drink a toast to our mutual friend Shona, who died on 25 June. Loraine and her husband Raymond arranged for Shona’s beloved dog, Cayley, to be flown from Port Alfred to Cape Town so they can adopt her. Cayley is now firmly entrenched as part of the family, which makes us all very happy. Loraine has long covid (well over 15 months now) and is tired most of the time. She sent us this gorgeous pic of Cayley giving her a get-well kiss.

All I know about Saturday is that (a) Raymond has been instructed to cook prawns; (b) there will be wine and whiskey; and (c) Vicki and I will have the use of the two guest bedrooms so we will be taking our pjs. The only thing missing will be Shona.

I’m not sure what possessed me at the time but I’ve booked to take part in an evening market at the Brass Bell in Kalk Bay next Wednesday. I’m a bit over lugging tables and chairs and boxes of stock around, and am really hoping that they provide the basics. I’m going to keep it simple – just my fabric necklaces and boot accessories. Karen and I did a recce at the beginning of August, which ended with whiskey and coffee (not respectively). It’s a stunning venue, as you can see, and attracts a great mix of people. I think most of them are under 25 (for the market, at least) so I’d better leave my walking stick at home.

If it’s a flop for me money-wise, at least I’ll have made some new contacts and also get to make sure the old pub has remained un-revamped. That’s important, to keep some things as they are. Especially pubs, right?

  • Molly, Rolinda, Freedom and Dubs all gave their permission to be photographed.