Sunday, January 22, 2017


Instructions with kind permission from Viola Williams,

Times and fashions do change, don't they? Sometimes they go in circles. Once upon a time, privileged ladies of the upper classes valued a pallid face, which indicated they had the money to achieve this result. Elaborate parasols protected them from the sun, while ingesting arsenic, or applying lead based creams supplemented the effect. 

Heaven forbid you had freckles! Remember the portraits of Queen Elizabeth 1 of England? A real paleface! She was a redhead......just  saying.....  It was only working class women who worked in the sun who were tanned.

Times changed again in the 1920's, popularized by Coco Chanel, and the privileged could spend time in the sun, with a tan being associated with health, wealth and leisure, while the pale working class were confined to factories and offices.

Now again, with more knowledge about the harmful effects of too much sun,  umbrellas are seen more on sunny days, as well as in the rain.

Probably the most popular periods for the parasol were Regency, Edwardian and Victorian. Some parasols to were quite tiny, just large enough to shade one tiny lady, while others were larger. 
The photo below shows the smaller size on the left, larger on the right.

To make a parasol, you will need
  • Pull tab from a beverage container
  • Lace (straight edged works better on smaller parasol, and stiff lace is best) 
  • Tacky glue
  • I Dowel or wire for handle
  • 1 small and 1 larger spools

Remove the circle from the pull tab and punch a small hole in the centre. 
Gather the side-edge of a strip of lace. Then pull gathers, join ends together and tie off, forming a circle to create the top of the parasol.
Tacky glue the lace to the top of the plastic circle, using clips to hold in place.

Gather a narrower strip of lace, join the two ends and slip over the handle to cover the plastic circle. Glue in place.

Push a dowel or wire from the insides through the centre of the plastic circle so that approximately 1/16 to 1/18 inch protrudes through the top. Glue the handle securely.
Stack two spools together to support the parasol. Drape the lace into a parasol shape. Give the parasol several coats of clear drying glue, hairspray or other stiffener.

Cover the top of the handle with flowers or a bead. Please note the larger parasol has lace glued to both inside and outside of the parasol.

How elegant, swelligant!

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Remembrance Day 2016

The battle of the Somme, WW1 was a tragic day for the  Newfoundland Regiment, fighting near Beaumont-Hamel in France.
This tiny self- governing country, (Newfoundland did not join Canada until 1949) sent 801 soldiers into battle on July 1, 1916. The next day, only 68 were able to answer roll call.
The Beaumont-Hamel memorial is perched up on a rocky promontory, suitably echoing  the country's nickname -"The Rock". There are other memorials to the Newfoundlanders and labradorians across Belgium and France.

Have a look at the CBC documentary, TheTrail of the Caribou, a depiction of how this war affected the people of Newfoundland for generations to come, and may even have played a part in making them a province in the Confederation of Canada, because so many young men had perished during this brutal war.

Read about of The Danger Tree : Memory, War and the Search for a Family's Past by David Macfarlane.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Making Wall Sconces

Hmmmm, now what could be used to make these?
Take a push pin, a star acrylic bead, a small circle punched from paper, a round bead and a seed bead. Also, cut an oval from card.

Then put some Play Dough or something similar into one segment of the star bead and glue in place. This will provide a point of attachment to the wall.

Place the star bead on top of the push pin and glue in place.


The circle of card gets glued on top to make a platform for a candle.

Add the round bead and the seed bead to the bottom, 

Add the oval to the back. Paint the whole thing black.

Whole thing painted black

Garage Sale roombox and fish

I scored a wonderful prize at the NOTL Pumphouse sale - a roombox just the right size to fit some items from my stash. Can you believe the price? I left the tag on so you can see.
Here is how it started out.

Here is the finished product. I have had the potbellied stove forever, as well as the checkers table. Printed and framed Canadian themed posters from the net. The upper attic gave me a chance to use more items from my stash...

The fish trophy was made from a $store package of fish shapes meant for scrap booking, I think. See the little fish on the label? That is how they started out.

Not too bad, eh?


Worked on an old time laundry scene.

Checkers, Anyone?

Found this roombox at the annual Pumphouse sale this summer. It was missing a couple of shingles, but in good shape otherwise. Not bad for .25 , eh?

This is how it turned out.
Moose head, butter churn. How Canadian is that?

The Canadian themed posters were downloaded from the net and framed. The fish was from a $store package, painted and mounted on a card oval, string glued around the edge and painted to look like wood.

Friday, August 26, 2016

Sock Stretchers

A member of our group has been downsizing and offered some minis to us. These 2 shapes were held together with string. Took a while to figure out what they were - going back to the days of hand knit wool socks, which had to be dried on these stretchers, or they shrunk to baby foot size!

The wooden shapes with socks drawn in pencil.

The socks painted and ready to be hung on the line.

Wouldn't you know I mislaid the little ...s somewhere. Luckily, I had traced the original and made a replica, as well as a perforated sample to show how the stretcher would look. Sooooo, I just proceeded to make a sock filled replica as well.