Tag Archives: art

Loom-band Project to Raise Funds for the Little Princess Trust!

Loom-band Project to Raise Funds for the Little Princess Trust!

My 9 year old daughter, Darlek, is cutting her hair and donating it to the Little Princess Trust for children who have lost their hair because of medical reasons, whether that be Alopiecha or Cancer. It will be woven into a wig and Darlek will have a lovely light, easy to maintain, pixie cut.

On the 'Big Hair Day' as opposed to a 'Bad Hair Day', Darlek will put her hair into plaits and have them cut off - before her remaining hair is cut into a new style

On the ‘Big Hair Day’ as opposed to a ‘Bad Hair Day’, Darlek will put her hair into plaits and have them cut off – before her remaining hair is cut into a new style

I’m so proud of her.  About a year ago I shaved all my hair off because my hair was in terrible condition, because of the meds I’d been taking for my Ulcerative Colitis. Darlek saw how some people reacted to me, and she realised that it’s not always an easy thing to deal with.  (Just to add it’s all grown back now and it’s twice as thick and in much better condition so there’s a happy ending there).

Another little girl at her school has already donated hair to the Little Princess Trust, and Darlek was inspired by her, so that was it….decision made.  Darlek is very excited about it all and is mad keen to fundraise too.

Darlek recently broke her wrist, here's how she jazzed up her splint.  She LOVES loom bands!

Darlek recently broke her wrist, here’s how she jazzed up her splint. She LOVES loom bands!

I’m going to do a blog campaign, try to get local newspapers and my daughter’s school involved too, and make a huge loom band art project – which I’m hoping to auction with the proceeds going to the Little Princess Trust.

 

 I’m going to ask if people can donate via Just Giving or to simply to send loom bands to us – in bracelet form, or longer if people can manage.  Darlek’s school has already said that they’d be interested in helping out, so if I could supply them with packs of loom bands so they can help with the project that would be fabulous.  With this in mind I’m going to approach a few businesses and see if I can find anyone to sponsor the project and fund packs of bands.

I could link all the donated loom bands together with jump rings which could then be used to make the picture.

I could link all the donated loom bands together with jump rings which could then be used to make a picture.

The idea is to layer the loom bands to and fro across a canvas, using graduating colours, to make an image.   Very simple but effective and eye-catching.  I saw a loom band dress for sale on Ebay which went for literally thousands of pounds and it got me thinking.  Not that I even imagine that this would go for anything like that, but it is something that children are interested in at the moment and so many people have access to loom bands.   The Little Princess Trust supports children and it seems appropriate that each child has an opportunity to help support them, just by making something that so many of them love doing anyway.

A loom band rainbow would look amazing!

A loom band rainbow would look amazing!

It would be a square  image, in graduating colours which could somehow be backed and secured to something like a big picture frame. With this in mind, I’m asking that people donate single coloured loom bands in a fishtail design (which is the most common weave that people learn), whatever length they like, although a minimum of a bracelet length.

I reckon it would look pretty and would look fabulous as a feature on someone’s living room or office wall.  Hopefully people would bid on that, it would raise publicity, people could donate something they find fun to make even if they don’t have the cash to donate, and it’s something lots of people are into at the minute. Any suggestions, ideas, feedback, offers of help would be most appreciated.

Even if you can’t donate or send a loom band, it would be so helpful if you could enter any competitions for loom bands on our behalf.  There’s a few listed at the bottom of this post if you would like to help that way.

If you want to donate a loom band, loom bands, or can offer any other kind of help, please feel free to email me at kay@rubbemonkeys.co.uk.

Darlek’s Just Giving Account is HERE, if you’d like to donate we’d be ever so grateful.

If you’re on Twitter there’s this one: Pls tweet Strand Shopping @ShoppingStrand Follow us to WIN a years supply of #LoomBands! All you have to do is tweet us your best #LoomBandSelfie!

There’s a competition here if you follow the link: HERE 

Or this one…    HERE (only 4 days left to enter this one so be quick!)

There is also one HERE. 

Thank you in advance! :O) x

 

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Chainmaille Madness! My Most Ambitious Project EVER.

Chainmaille Madness!  My Most Ambitious Project EVER.

For once I’m actually reviewing my own product here, I’ve been spending a lot of time crafting and here’s the result.  It’s a completely hand-made chainmaille  top, made with pliers, patience and a fair amount of swearing.  Each bright aluminium link has been lovingly opened and closed and generally messed around with by me.  I’ve never made anything like this before, so this is my first attempt.  Whaddya think?  I finished it last night, took photos and bunged it on Folksy for sale so I’m, as they say, buzzing.  It would be quite useless in the face of battle, but it would be fantastic at a cocktail party or in a club, as long as there’s no-one shooting arrows at you at you.

Made from Bright Aluminium which is a surprisingly light metal, so this is comfortable to wear and won't weigh you down at all.

Made from Bright Aluminium which is a surprisingly light metal, so this is comfortable to wear and won’t weigh you down at all.

Made to my own design, so this is completely unique and a stand out piece.  The scales are made from bright aluminium too, so allt he materials match perfectly.

Made to my own design, so this is completely unique and a stand out piece. The scales are made from bright aluminium too, so the materials match perfectly.

Can be worn over a bra top, or over a camisole if you're feeling a little less extrovert.  Catches the light beautifully and drapes like a dream.

Can be worn over a bra top, or over a camisole if you’re feeling a little less extrovert. Catches the light beautifully and drapes like a dream.

Each diamond is reinforced with a 'Mobious' link, which is three rings intertwined for extra strength, and they look pretty too!

Each diamond is reinforced with a ‘Mobious’ link, which is three rings intertwined for extra strength, and they look pretty too!

Here's a close up of the weave, you can see the Mobious links more clearly here.   This will not rust by the way!  Can easily be cleaned with light detergent, warm water and a bit of a polish with a soft cloth.  No messing around with dry cleaning at all!

Here’s a close up of the weave, you can see the Mobious links more clearly here at the junction of the diamonds. This will not rust by the way! Can easily be cleaned with light detergent, warm water and a bit of a polish with a soft cloth. No messing around with dry cleaning at all!

I’m not used to this blowing my own trumpet sort of thing, but if I want to sell this, then I have to.  *blushes* Feel free to drop by my Folksy account if you’re interested or I have a ‘Bumbling Bee’ Facebook page if you prefer.  You’d be very welcome on either page and I do list other items too, which you may like.

I put a lot of time, effort and skill into my work and I’d love your feedback.  Please do drop by!  This top took me approximately a month of spending almost every available minute with a pair of pliers by the way.  You could call it knitting with metal I suppose.

Bumbling Bee Facebook page can be found HERE and my Folksy page is HERE.

I am open to negotiation by the way, especially if you mention that you discovered my work via this blog.  ;O)

Anyway, I hope you like my very new hobby, which is mostly just another really elaborate way to avoid doing the housework.  The Brink of Bedlam household looks like a bomb has dropped on it, but I do have a lovely top to show for it.

My mother does not approve and thinks I should clean the cooker rather than make chainmaille tops, but what the hell!

Inspirational Interior Decorating

Inspirational Interior Decorating

Everyone seems to be doing blog posts about interior decorating at the moment.  I’m feeling rather left out to be honest.  So, here goes.  We’re dead stylish at our house, everything has that special pzazz (or whatever the word is), it’s all colour co-ordinated, up to date, functional, fashionable and we’re the envy of our friends and relatives.  Random people even come up to me in the street and say, ‘We LOVE your house! Can we please come and sit in your living room just to stare at the furniture?’  I feel awful, but I have to say no.  They’d mucky our immaculate cream shag pile carpet with their shoes.  Can’t be having that now, can we?

I’m pleased to say our son seems to be following in our footsteps.  His eye for detail, his impeccable taste, his stupendous artistic skills are already emerging, even at the age of four. When we were elsewhere (probably making bespoke furniture in our minimalistic zen style back garden) he drew this work of art on our living room wall.  Fantastic isn’t it.  Modern art at its finest.

IMG_4699

 

We’ve called it ‘Bottom’ and when we move we plan to carefully peel off the wallpaper, frame it and sell it at Sotherbys for a million or two.

This is not a sponsored post.  Nobody would sponsor my son to draw a picture of a bum on our living room walls.  Spoilsports.

A Smashing Weekend!

A Smashing Weekend!

**Before we start, I’m introducing new family members here, we have ‘Gangdad’, (Horace’s dad) so called because Darlek used to call him that when she was little – and Sweara.  Swearer does not, as the name implies, swear lots, although I think she might when we’re not there, I’m not sure.  Sweara is Horace’s mother and my lovely Mother In Law.  She’s fabulous, she puts up with me and feeds me cake quite a lot, so it’s all good!  (Sweara please don’t tease me about cake-eating after this…)

Right so, where was I?  It was Horace’s dad’s 50th birthday do this weekend, so we packed up and shipped over there for the duration.  The kids ran wild outside with a very cute doggy that one of Gangdad’s old uni friends had brought with him.  I don’t think dog identity theft is rife so I shall actually name the doggy, as it became a minor celebrity over the course of the weekend.  Poppy!  I’m not sure what sort of dog it was, but she was black, medium sized, shaggy as a mophead, and was obsessed with catching balls.  The kids adored him and happily kicked and rolled around the soggiest, mankiest, half deflated football you’ve ever seen, to Poppy’s sheer delight.

Horace and I milled around inside talking, drinking and I think I probably fluffed a few random conversations with Gangdad’s friends –  but it was a very friendly affair and not half as traumatic as I always expect parties to be.  You see I’m a bit of a numpty at small talk.  You probably wouldn’t want to sit next to me at one of these do’s!  Anyway! Self-deprecation aside, I decided at one point to go and sit in the conservatory and play with the kids.  This is where the ‘smashing’ bit comes in….

I crouched down to get on the kid’s level, and tried to sit on the floor, inadvertantly pushing a chair backwards.  All I knew then was that the chair slipped back rather more quickly than I expected, and there was  an absolutely ear shattering crash, and then another one, and then lots of tinkling noises.  At that point I had my hands over my ears, had shouted ‘SH*T!  I daren’t look!  What is it?!!!!’ really loudly in front of lots of people I didn’t know very well and I think I did the equivalent of commit social suicide.  Sweara burst out laughing and I’ve never been so relieved in my life!  I thought I was going to be written out of the will.  I’d managed to smash one pole mounted light fitting and two jugs in one fell swoop, the floor was very pretty with all the sparkly glass, but it wasn’t ideal so we all had to clear out of there while I muttered countless apologies, turned red (very red in fact, I already had beer flush), and thanked Sweara a billion times for not murdering me.  So that was nice.

The evening progressed and I began smoking.  I can’t help it!  Give me a glass of wine and I turn into the world’s worst cigarette blagger.  Sorry.  The kids eventually toddled off to bed, and us grown ups sat about talking and Gangdad and Sweara’s mates reminisced about the old days.  For the sake of privacy I’m not going to recite whole conversations, but I have to say there was one about a man who wore two pairs of trousers that I found incredibly amusing.  I don’t think anyone will mind me writing about this, well I hope not anyway.  Maybe smashing random ornaments into tiny pieces and then reciting conversations about old uni friends who wore two pairs of pants at the same time, will be enough for them to finally decide to disown me.  We shall see!

Anyway, it was towards the end of the evening.  I was a little tipsy and very tired so wasn’t following the conversation too well, but they started talking about this really massive tub of coffee that Sweara and Gangdad had bought years ago when they lived in their uni flat.  The story goes that they had a huge party, and someone brought along a man who was quite literally wearing two pairs of trousers, one leg length was half mast, and the other was normal length I presume.  I think in fashionable  circles it’s probably called ‘layering’, but in normal circles it’s more commonly known as ‘a bit odd’.  After this uni party all those years ago, the coffee disappeared and Mr Two-Pairs-Of-Pants took the blame and was muttered about for a while I think.  Years later the coffee turned up down the back of the kitchen cupboard where it must have slipped, so the poor man was oddly dressed, but not a thief after all!  I suppose the moral of the story is, don’t draw attention to yourself (ie. wear excessive trousers or smash half of your In-Law’s conservatory and shout ‘Sh*t!’) or you’ll get earmarked as a trouble maker.  So, that’s me done for then, I thought at the time.

The next day we all headed out to the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, which is simply one of my my most favourite day’s out activities, ever.  It is a wonderful place filled with huge sculptures that dot the landscape.  I love that these most of these sculptures and works of art, aren’t behind roped off areas, or trapped in cramped display areas, they are quite literally scattered throughout the fields and they can be touched and climbed on (unless there’s signs saying otherwise), and children and adults alike can appreciate them in the open air.  I suppose you could say they are free range art?

A sculpture and a slide!

Fabulous location! Surrounded by sheep and hills!

These are huge sculptures, I don’t know if you can see Horace’s legs in the middle of this photograph?  It gives you some idea of the scale.  There are rivers and bridges, wooded areas, fields, a wier – it’s so picturesque and has a dreamlike quality because of these strange sculptures scattered here and there too!  I don’t know if anyone else knows of that old Future Sounds of London video with all the morphing squidgy shapes (I’m showing my age now)? You see I always feel like I’m walking around on the set of that particular video when I’m here.  Which is no bad thing, I just have to pinch myself every now and then to make sure I’m awake!  It is a little surreal.

My favourite ever place at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park is the Deer Shelter.  This is a sizeable white, square building with a roof that lets in an open square of sky where the ceiling is.  There’s no glass when you stare upwards, it is just open to the elements.  Very cleverly the walls slope at an angle and the seats at the sides are just out of the reach of the rain, should it decide to tip it down.  The thing that strikes me every time, is that the square of the walls that surrounds the gap seems like a picture frame, and that nature constantly paints a fresh canvas with rushing clouds, or sunlight filtering through rain, or birds darting overhead. It makes me appreciate the sky like a painting on a wall.  Something like that!  The point I’m making is, if you’re heading over that way, you cannot miss the Deer Shelter, it’s beautiful!

In the Deer Shelter (I was disappointed at the lack of deer in there I have to say)

Here’s another photo of my two clambering around inside another of the outdoor exhibits.

This was a metallic, tall, tubular, winding, caterpillar like sculpture you could hide in.

And of course, Poppy the wonder dog!  Darlek and Sausage would love a dog now, I on the other hand am willing only to stretch as far as a pet snail.  Snails are no good on leads and do not catch sticks so the kid’s aren’t keen unfortunately.

Poppy investigating one of the exhibits.

There’s loads more to see, and they regularly update their collection, so there’s always something new to cast your eyes on.  It does cost £5 per car, which seems a little steep, but if you go early in the day and give yourself enough time to explore everywhere, you can certainly get your money’s worth.  The facilities are great, the visitors’ centre features a cafe and a shop, and I spotted a conference centre too, so it seems a very adaptable, well catered for place.

This isn’t a sponsored post by the way, I just love the Yorkshire Sculpture Park.  You should go!  Especially with a mild hangover, it’s a great cure.  Fresh air, dodging sheep poo, admiring massive oversized wire models of half rabbits/half people in fields, wandering over rivers and up hills, it’s fabulous.

Loved the sillhouettes on this photograph!

After trekking around for a while we sadly left for home, after saying our goodbyes to Gangdad and Sweara.  It was a really great weekend, filled with laughs, smashed ornaments, lovely cake (cake!), soggy doggies, and sunshine mixed with rain.  We always have great memories to come home with after a trip over there.  I just hope they’ll let me in the house again after my destructive behaviour.  *Kay looks hopeful and promises to be good next time*

All photos were taken by Gangdad, as I forgot my phone.  Thank you!