The last couple of days, I have had a polymer clay frenzy. I needed some buttons and decided to make some. However, polymer clay buttons are a bit like Pringles, once you start, you can’t stop.
I think that this may continue for some time – because it’s fun!
I made some floral ones, using a mould that I made from an antique glass button. I added a little mica powder before baking, then after baking I rubbed a little acrylic paint in to the surface to give it a bit of patina.
I also did some tribal faces, I had the idea a while ago and never got round to it then. They are made with some clay that I made to give the appearance of wood, then antiqued with some acrylic paint.
The rest are a random mix of texture, along with some that I made from an old polymer clay cane.
I have been playing around with one of my drawings today. I had scanned it on to the computer and decided to add a few digital effects. It was fun to play around. It needs more work but the technique has some potential I think.
A few years ago, I did some prints on to old cotton sheeting, using my HP inkjet printer, which used pigment inks. After drying thoroughly, I was able to wash the printed fabric with very little loss of ink. Although the prints were a little more muted than those done on paper they were still very good.
So this week, I decided to do some more fabric prints. However, what I had forgotten was that not all inkjet printers are created equal. Now I am not sure if it is the type of ink, my current printer uses dye based inks, but it doesn’t give the same results. The ink washes out.
I tried leaving the prints to dry, I tried ironing them, I tried pre-soaking the fabric in a solution of alum, washing soda and fabric softener, none of which made a bit of difference.
I know that there is a product called BubbleJet Set, which purports to help you get colourfast fabric prints. Being a bit grippy, I am loathe to spend money on it as I have no guarantee of it working.
I also have concerns that, even with the Bubble Jet Set solution the prints, being dye based, might fade. I really wish that I still had my old printer 🙁
Do any of you lovely people out there have any experience of this product?
Here in the depths of Aberdeenshire, we get used to things taking a while to get here, sometimes it takes a week or so after ordering, when most other places will receive their stuff the next day. So imagine my surprise, when, the day after ordering it, my fabric turned up! Hurrah!
Not only that but it is really nice fabric and was very reasonably priced.
Quick Fabrics have a good range of material, so it didn’t take me long to put an order together. It’s great to find a shop like this one.
I bought some calico, for printing on, as well as some lovely thick cotton jacquard and some bright poly-cottons. I couldn’t get a good photo of the jacquards, which is a shame as the texture of them is fantastic.
I decided to take a photograph of today’s eggs, just because they look so pretty. The Marans pullets, which I hatched out last year, have begun to lay and I am now getting a lot of eggs each day. When I say I hatched them out I mean that the incubator did! 🙂
The very dark brown ones in the photo are the Marans girl’s eggs. The blue ones area from my Araucana hens. I am really keen to get even more colours of egg.
I have my Araucana cockerel in with my Marans girls and I am hoping to hatch out some of their eggs this year. Any of the resulting chicks that are female should lay an olive coloured egg – the blue egg layer crossed with the brown gives olive. I just hope that my luck is better with this year’s hatching, last year resulted in more cockerels than pullets.
The other colour that I don’t have is white so I am hoping to buy a white egg layer of some sort this year. There are actually only two colours of egg shell, white and blue. The brown and tinted eggs are the result of a coating that is laid down over the egg shell during its transit through the hen’s oviduct.
If you find that, when making stewed apples or apple pie, your apple slices are discolouring before you can get them in the pan/pie dish, then add a sprinkle of citric acid to some water and drop them in there until you are ready to cook them. Drain the water off, you don’t need to rinse, and you are good to go.
Citric acid is used commercially in many foodstuffs but don’t use massive amounts of it in cooking. Small amounts are sufficient. As with most things too much of anything is not good for you.
I also discovered that it makes an amazing toilet cleaner. First of all I dissolved about three quarters of a cup of citric acid crystals in a litre of boiling water. After skooshing most of the water out of the toilet bowl with the brush, I very slowly (don’t want to crack the toilet) poured the hot water into the toilet bowl. I left it for a couple of hours, overnight would probably have been better though. Then I gave it a quick scrub with the loo brush and after flushing the toilet it was sparkling clean. Yay! I had previously struggled to remove the limescale in there, even with commercial cleaners.
I also chucked half a cup of the citric acid into my empty washing machine and put it on a hot cycle. It had previously had a musty smell and the citric acid got rid of that so now it smells nice and fresh!
Apparently you can also use it to make cheese, although I haven’t tried that yet.
Here’s a link to a couple of pages describing the process:
The snow is starting to melt today but I think that you might still need to wrap up your mugs.
I have had a bit of a mug cosy crochet binge lately. It’s fun trying out new stitches and sorting through the button box to find suitable buttons. I made the grey/plum coloured one so that it is adjustable, there are 3 buttons altogether on it, so you can tighten it up or slacken it off to suit the size of your cup.
If you are like me and are always leaving your cup of tea unattended, only to find that it has gone cold because you left it too long, then these cosies are ideal to keep your drink warm.
I will be adding these to my Etsy shop. I intend to make a serious attempt at stocking it with more stuff this year!