14 May 2011

makings and a barter (edited)

birthday cushion

I made this cushion for a friend's birthday recently. A birthday featuring a zero (no, not that one, the next one, which my circle of friends are now beginning to experience). The gathering was of a select group of 'inspiring women', (no male partners involved much to their collective chagrin) and boy were there some inspiring women there. Lots of CEOs, heads of departments and scary inspiring women with Important Jobs. The birthday girl woman spoke personally about each and every guest during her speech which was very touching and impressive but also served to make those of us who know her not through our high powered employment (but via book club or the gym) giggle even more nervously as we waited over in Under Achievers Corner to hear what she would say about us. (She said lovely things of course, but what we "do" didn't feature. Funny about that).*

* Edited to add: I think I've been misinterpreted, as evidenced by a couple of comments. The most recent commenter said s/he hoped my friend doesn't read this post. While I have answered in the comments, I'm copying it here in case my friend does indeed read this one day and similarly thinks I'm having a go, although I don't think she would. My reply in the comments:
Why, is it offensive? I thought (hoped) I made it clear that while my [very dear] friend knows many high flying women, she also values other more humbly-employed folk such as myself and finds us inspiring for what must clearly be reasons other than our employment.

I was trying to show that it was my insecurities (and those of the other 2 women who together joked about Under Achievers Corner) about how one is so often judged, often by oneself, for what one does in this world, rather than any prejudice on my friend's part. Also as I pointed out, my friend said lovely things about me and why she found my fellow bookgroup pals and I inspiring.

Anyway I was so pleased with the cushion that I made another one for our own blue and red loungeroom. It looks fabulous on the dark blue couch, so much so that I am now in the middle of making a matching strippy quilt. Gah! Must stop making strippy quilt tops, and start actually constructing quilts with tops, middles and backs.

giant granny square rug

The giant granny square rug is also finished. Wow, that was addictive. All housework, knitting, reading, and consideration of any members of my family went out the window for two or three weeks while I obsessively hooked, hooked and hooked some more.

giant granny square rug

It had the added advantage of using up a great deal a modest proportion of my yarn stash, about which I was becoming more and more uneasy. And we all know what happens when one reduces one's embarrassingly large stash. One experiences the dizzying heights of the moral high ground for approximately a week, and then one is entirely justified in taking advantage of the strongest Australian dollar in centuries and ordering more yarn. I am resisting further guilt by telling myself a) it was on sale and b) instead of less useful single skeins, purchasing a garment's worth (oh ok, two garments' worth) is far better value. (Any discussion of Yarn Miles will be shelved for another day, thank you).

the ginormous granny square rug

The rug lives on the green couch in the general family living area (as opposed to the red and blue loungeroom) and looks very fetching. It is the perfect size for snuggling under with a book and a large English Breakfast. The cat approves also.

latest soaps

And finally, I made more soap. Soap fulfills several functions - it washes one quite beautifully (and fragrantly if you throw in cloves from the pantry or rosemary from the garden - added bonus if you have teenage boys in the home) and is a far more satisfying procrastinatory device than, say, playing Wordtwist on facebook. (See dizzying heights, moral high ground etc).

Ok. Have any of you seen the new bloggy barter thing going on? I like the idea, but prefer to test the waters here first with a smaller audience of my own gentle readers. *Takes big breath*. If anyone's interested, there are two things I would be very keen to receive right now. I would like to offer five bars of my soap in exchange for either one skein of Malabrigo Merino Worsted yarn in the colourway 'Amoroso',

which is the red/pink that looks like this when knitted up:

Robin's Egg Blue [red] Hat

or, a little selection of quilting (or similar) fabrics in patterned reds, to help out with the aforementioned red strippy quilt to match aforepictured cushion.

Any takers? If you are interested and would like to leave a comment, please make sure I can contact you in return. (I'm talking to those of you who have made your profiles private. Just leave an email address in your comment or of course email me directly at suseinthesoup[at]gmail[dot]com).

ps. I've had a few folk ask if I am selling my soap. Sadly, to sell soap one needs several thousand dollars of insurance, so it's largely impossible unless, say, you were interested in buying a used match or a safety pin for $10, which happens to come with three bars of free soap. Hmmm, on second thoughts, better not.


Stomper Girl said...

I can't barter with you, but I can giggle nervously from the Under Achievers' Corner with you.

Strippy cushion looks fab.

Have you considered strippy doona covers? Less finishing off I'd reckon, as in no actual quilting required.

Tania said...

What rot. While I am in awe of many a constructed quilt, when it comes down to it, strippy is my all time fave. Keep stripping! You know what I mean.

Apologies I haven't any patterned red quilting fabrics for you. They are all busy being part of my strippy quilt.

Are you fessing up to what you have purchased? I think I need to know. I have nothing on the sticks. Everything is at sixes and sevens. I have birthday yarn money burning a pocket hole.

Thimbleanna said...

Hahaha -- I love that there are always ways to get around stupid rules. Good luck with your used match business -- should you decide to become a little matchstick girl. Ha!

Your creations are always so lovely. Do you really call that beautiful crochet a rug? For us, a rug goes on the floor -- something you definitely wouldn't want to do with something so pretty!

froginthepond said...

OK, I'll barter! Are you interested in red Japanese cotton prints, 5x5"? Soap is the one thing that I would like to make but have to realise that I don't have that much time to do.

And when yours looks so pretty and there's a barter going on, it's an offer to good to refuse. I'm at i_annett(at)yahoo(dot)com(dot)au.

flowerpress said...

I've got some pieces of my red rick rack design, its almost all gone but I have some smaller offcuts from the end of the roll. I'd love to send them to you but no need to send soap (its linen/cotton, would that work?)

Janet said...

If I could stop knitting socks, then I'd be frantically crochetting all my odd balls of yarn so that I could feed the growing yarnmonster within that wants grownup yarn, posh yarn, stuff to knit garments with. Think I'm finally starting to understand why knitters buy stash yarn and am astonished at how well you keep it under control.

I will have a look for red and whites for you.... but no need for soap, we still have plenty, we don't seem to go through that much as I think I am the only one that uses it, which may explain the ahem, odiferousnous of some of my family.

Lynn said...

I have had such a hankering for a $10 safety pin lately - how did you know?

And it is such a relief to hear that there are other people who periodically abandon consideration of their family members for a week or two or three. Except with me, it's less to complete an Important Project and more to curl up in a ball to suck my thumb and ingest chocolate. (See Underachievers' Corner...)

victoria said...

The rug does look very fetching. I love the cushion, how there's one piece of older fabric (I think? The teatowelish stripe?) with all the modern pieces, it's excellent.

Anonymous said...

You can never get me to believe that being a CEO is MORE of an achievement than raising happy healthy kids and being creative and making stuff and cooking great meals for everyone to enjoy and thrive from. WHY are we women valued more outside the home, dag gummit! Plus I love your hat!

Suse said...

Chloe, I don't often make great meals. But thanks.

Victoria - the floral fabric is from a curtain (it's flowers and fruit) that came from a destash bag of fabrics from Shula! Every time I cut a piece out of it I think of you because it's such a you fabric. (I think of Shula too of course).

christinelaennec said...

Oh thank you for the laugh about the Under Achievers' Corner and the used matches! I have nothing to barter, but I admire your crocheted blanket and the lovely hat! And I agree with Chloe that the world's values are pretty wonky when it comes to defining Success.

Suse said...

I don't want anyone to think my gorgeous friend was saying she is only inspired by high powered important people. In fact it's the opposite - as evidenced by my and a couple of others' presence. This is merely MY insecurities showing. My friend, by virtue of her job, mixes with a lot of high end people around town, but as she pointed out, not all of them were invited :)

jus said...

As a lover of all things sudsy it's your perfectly saponified bars that have impressed me greatly. How are you going with natural colourings and have you tried peppermint essential oil yet... tingly!

Julie said...

This is a fabulous idea. I have quite a bit red quilting fabric pieces left over from a mostly red quilt I made. You can get an idea of the fabrics from this post
to see if any of them are up your alley - you may loathe them all, or consider them unsuitable for your purpose in which case I will take absolutely zero offence. But if they look the goods, send me your address and I'll pop them in the post for you.

SmitoniusAndSonata said...

Underachiever ? Rug , cushion and soap count for nothing ??
I'd be delighted to have made even one of them , never mind about them all !

mrsfife said...

I haven't the faintest what quilting fabric is or ought to be, but I could go look for some red cottony things if you like? Only, I live halfway across the world in India and it might be cheaper to take on the insurance to sell soap instead.

Anonymous said...

Hope your friend doesn't read this post....

Suse said...

Why, is it offensive? I thought (hoped) I made it clear that while my [very dear] friend knows many high flying women, she also values other more humbly-employed folk such as myself and finds us inspiring for what must clearly be reasons other than our employment.

I was trying to show that it was my insecurities (and those of the other 2 women who together joked about Under Achievers Corner) about what we do in this world, rather than any prejudice on my friend's part.

willywagtail said...

Are you still in need of red scraps? I desperately need a wash. Cherrie

willywagtail said...

I've just discovered (from your profile somewhere) you have rees in your heritage. I married one but later unmarried. grrr. Cherrie

tracy said...

I've just seen your edit on this post...I understood perfectly what you were trying to say. Who hasn't stood in that corner, and who doesn't feel better for knowing that everyone thinks they're standing in that corner? Okay, not everyone thinks they're standing in that corner, but they're probably not that much fun anyway. I don't think you have anything to fear from your friend reading this. I thought she sounded like a rather awesome woman.

Suse said...

Thanks Tracy. She is a rather awesome woman. You'd love her.

Sadly *I* am not good at articulating what I want to say. I think I'll stick to photos and knitting from now on.

bethiejw said...

Lovely pillow and afghan