Goings and Comings


Gradually filling the raised bed... a layer of greenery next

Gradually filling the raised bed… a layer of greenery is required next

I think that I have finally worked my way through most of the old paperwork in my work room and banished it to form the lovely absorbent base layer in our new raised bed. In a fit of enthusiasm I also went through a couple of large plastic crates that were lurking in the bottom of the wardrobe and that also contained long-neglected teaching materials. Go Me! Now, I’m moving on to craft materials…

Over the years I’ve tried my hand at lots of crafts… some have become firm favourites, whilst my interest in others has waned. Years ago, for example, I used to enjoy Brazilian three-dimensional flower embroidery, but these days it does not pique my interest. Similarly, I have done no encaustic wax painting for years, nor have I made paper. And, I have finally admitted to myself that I really don’t enjoy dressmaking. And so, the next task is to find good homes for my unwanted craft items. To this end I have joined a swap/sell pre-loved craft stuff group on Facebook. I’ve tried selling via ebay with mixed success, so I thought a targeted group like this one might be a good alternative. And so it is proving… I have takers for a pile of t-shirt fabric, another piece of fabric and a bundle of zips – and this is only after one day. I know that I won’t be able to get rid of everything this way (the shoulder pads remain unclaimed, despite offering them free, just for the cost of the postage), but at least some of my unwanted crafting supplies will be welcomed into new homes, where they may actually be used thus freeing up space for me.

What I do have to be cautious of is too much flowing in the opposite direction… I must not be tempted. Having said that, though, there have been a couple of arrivals this week, which leads us to the


Last week I had a lovely email from a participant on a course I taught a few years ago, with the offer of a set of purple glass snails. How could I refuse? And so yesterday morning I received these:

Glass snails

Glass snails

I’m not sure what I’m going to do with them yet… I could use them as buttons or embellishments and I think I need to have a good think about them for a while before I make a decision. Anyway, if you want to see more of Charli’s work, do take a look at Ugly Teapot.

The second arrival was, coincidentally, also in the form of buttons, these from the very talented Joanna Bond:

Ceramic buttons... with a tiny leaf motif in the middle of each

Ceramic buttons… with a tiny leaf motif in the middle of each

I commissioned these buttons for my sofa cushions, but I don’t think that I really want them to be tucked away out of sight (the shell ones that are currently on the cushions are good enough for that), so I think that I will use these to hold the main pieces of the cover together – making the joins a decorative feature and effectively creating a set of loose covers. I went to collect these buttons from Joanna’s studio where we discussed the possibility of an artistic collaboration – yarn and ceramics. If it works out, you’ll be the first to know!

So, the goings have far exceeded the comings, plus I’ve made a bit of money selling things that, to me, have become clutter. I think that counts as a successful few days!

Leave a comment


  1. Love those buttons – and looking forward to seeing them on the sofa….

  2. Thrifty Weaver

     /  July 16, 2015

    Local charity groups are a good place to gift your unwanted craft items. My local Red Cross shop have craft classes and sell some of the things they make.

  3. Go you!! Love the buttons!

  4. I am like Smeagol looking at his preciouses with those buttons. What pure gorgeousness Ms Snail! I am stroking the screen with my desire. “Oooooh pretty!”

  5. It’s wonderful to get pretty things in the mail. But I am most interested in finding a way to disperse craft items. My daughter and I thought about taking a class on Brazilian embroidery but it was too far away to be cost effective. I have many things that I know I will never get to either. Getting tired. How did you find the Facebook site to exchange or sell craft?. I’ve already donated so very much.

    • Surprisingly (to me) I found the FB site through a connection I made on Twitter. I was very dubious about Twitter, but there is a good re-use/recycle/repair/upcycle community on there which has rather inspired me. Every Thursday evening at 8pm (UK time) there is an hour of chat under the hashtag #makedoandmendhour which has made me aware of all sorts of people and activities.

  6. Joanna’s buttons have smiling faces in that photo! The leaf imprint makes the nose…. And those snail buttons are completely gorgeous – I propose a snuggly woollen garment with a row of snail buttons parading down the front, facing in alternate directions as if they were doing a slalom! I don’t do Facebook, or I’d jump on and see what you have – can you send me a list as I’d love to help declutter Chez Snail?

    • I like that half the snails face one way and half the other… just a little detail that you wouldn’t get with mass-produced items.
      I keep coming across fabric (some of it truly hideous)and haberdashery, so you are right, I really should make a list of what I’ve got. Today I found some hair ribbons and lace… it’s like the 1950s!!

      • Do make the list, I’d be only too delighted to buy something I can use, and am happy to pay the postage on top.

  7. I love that de-cluttering feeling, some of which I have been doing lately, getting ready to move. Shoulder pads…..I don’t remember of you have a dog…or cat?……if either, maybe join them, overlapped and a couple of layers deep, make a cover or two…..easily removed and washed….from some of your ugly fabrics and you have a comfy animal cushion/mat. Or if that doesn’t appeal, make some anyway and donate to your nearest animal shelter. Or make a kneeling pad for the garden, or a seat cushion or two for your favourite outdoor bench or chair. Those ugly fabrics would probably play nicely together if cut into large squares and stitched together for an outdoor rug, something to pull over your knees while you sit in your limery as autumn wanders in, you might even have an old blanket or flannelette sheets for batting! I have a bloggy friend somewhere in your neck of the woods ie England ! :)…..who makes teaching aids for children with visual problems…..she might be interested in some of your things…..her blog is http://liniecat.blogspot.com.au/ so you could look and see what she does, and I’ll let her know about you and your treasures and maybe when you have the list, she can have a look.

  8. So happy you continue to have the satisfaction of decluttering! And those buttons–both snail and leafy–are amazing. Not to mention in good hands!

  9. You’re on quite a roll! It must feel so good to be getting that stuff out of your house!

  10. Encaustic Wax painting! Takes me down memory lane. I have all the gear untouched for 15 years. And rubber stamping. And mosiac making. Glad its not just me. But I still have big plans.

  11. Well done you indeed! I believe personally that decluttering definitely enhances my creativity! 😀


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