Wool, Wiltshire and All Manner of Wonderful Things!

Coming down slowly from the Wedding and from a week away in Sussex. Can’t believe how much extra sleep I have required this week. Must be getting old.

Anyway lots to catch up with. Little Miss F got cold whilst we were in Oxfordshire setting up the reception. As it just so happened I had given her Mum the pink jumper I had knitted for her, so it got its first outing in July.

Bit big, but there we are. Her hair is in plaits so she could have Mermaid hair at the wedding.

Anyway wedding over and we went down to Sussex to visit some old haunts. I was interested to visit the museum in Horsham where I had once been a volunteer in the late 1970s.

My role was to lurk upstairs and make sure no visitors mis-behaved. I explained this to the lady on the desk, she thought lurking a good task, but not required anymore. Replaced by CCTV! Well really!

I was most intrigued by a display of gingerbread moulds, which in my excitement I didn’t photo.  It transpires that thanks to the poet Shelley there is such a thing as Horsham Gingerbread. Being flushed with success from making gingerbread for my grand children I was most interested. So I sampled some they just so happened to have in the shop. The texture is completely different to modern-day gingerbread as it contains oats. Oats? Anyway I am now going to try out as many gingerbread recipes as I can lay my hands on. I still don’t really know why they used moulds and not cutters. How did they get them out of the moulds? I have only tried to get jelly out of a mould and let’s say it wasn’t exactly a triumph in the cooking department.

However, I did take some pictures which you might enjoy.

Little sewing display with Singer Sewing Machine and

would you look at the Swan pin cushion. I think it a bit sad that it sits in a display cabinet when someone, me for example, could be using it.

And a fire screen to stop the ladies having red faces.

I loved the embroidery.

More from Sussex next time. Back home it was time to tackle my nemeses otherwise known as scary zip, now to be renamed as Much Ado about Nothing! I watched some You Tube  videos.

Sat myself in front of the sewing machine. Had a stern talking to myself in which I reminded myself that zips were not rocket science, deep breath and 5 minutes later, just what was all the fuss about?

Not too shabby for only the second zip I have sewn ever, and the first 49 years ago.

So just a waist band and a hem and then job done. I think I probably took the instruction to sew close to the teeth a bit too literally, but it goes up and down, what more do I want.

I decided to make my next knitting project the bright coloured jumper for Master T. The front is done.

I think this one might be bright enough and will fit him this Winter.

Plans for next week include, doing the back of the jumper, finishing the skirt and maybe a little cross stitch. There is a slight hurdle. I need a hook and eye for the waist band. As it happens I have an eye test later this morning, so will be near a shop that sells hooks and eyes, and yarn and fabric and all manner of crafty goodies. I MUST be Strong, and buy  no more yarn!

So over to you, do you have a special gingerbread recipe,ideas for how you get it out of moulds? What are your weekend plans? How do you resist the pull of yarn/fabric?

Be Happy!




Comments on: "Sew, Bake,Knit and Natter Friday!" (61)

  1. I love your creativity!!!

  2. Zip looks fab! Knew you could do it. As for replacing you with CCTV – never!

    • Thanks for your encouragement Bekki, wouldn’t have managed it without the cheering on from fellow bloggers. Yes I had a mini huff about that CCTV.

  3. Oh Cathy, in order to not buy yarn, etc. I must stay home, or I take all manner of currency,etc. and remove it from my wallet. No money, no card, no yarn. Big post on the good old Peace sweater coming next week!

    • Looking forward to your peace sweater post. Good plan, take less money and no cards, only problem was I was en route to the opticians, and needing new specs. The good thing was I ran out of time to do anything bar the bare essentials.

  4. I would have thought greasing moulds well would be what was needed but not having seen them!
    I have made ‘gingerbread’ cake and also gingerbread men which are more like biscuits. I have tried many recipes for gingerbread men but my favourite was one which gave a dough that could be moulded into all sorts of shapes. Snakes was one idea suggested. This was in a children’s book from the library.
    My post is a bit long but there are some photographs of ginger bread snakes (and a cautionary tale) here. – https://rainbowjunkiecorner.wordpress.com/2014/02/19/gingerbread-for-grandchildren/

  5. Is the pink flamingo skirt for the same girl who got the bright pink sweater? That would be a great outfit! And your success with the zipper may embolden me . . . I really need to tackle this fear. A fun post, Cathy!

    • Yes the skirt is for my grand daughter, little Miss F as she has come to be known on these posts. Thank you, and yes do have a go at a zipper, if I can do it then honestly everyone can.

  6. You have been busy! I have been sewing craft zippers but wonder if I can still do a zipper in clothing. 😕

  7. Oooh… What I cannot resist is a googling a question.
    From a brief “History of Gingerbread”–

    “The first American cookbook, American Cookery by Amelia Simmons, has recipes for three types of gingerbread including the soft variety baked in loaves:

    No. 2 Soft gingerbread to be baked in pans.
    Rub three pounds of sugar, two pounds of butter, into four pounds of flour, add 20 eggs, 4 ounces ginger, 4 spoons rosewater, bake as No. 1.

    “This softer version of gingerbread was more common in America. George Washington’s mother, Mary Ball Washington, served her recipe for gingerbread to the Marquis de Lafayette when he visited her Fredericksburg, Virginia home.”

    TWENTY eggs!

    • Thanks Fresca, I had wondered if a recipe might have made it to America. Apparently it was one of those things that everyone knew how to make so no-one wrote it down so it survived. I wish I had had the sense to take a picture of the moulds, which are quite shalllow about 6 inches by four and intricate in detail, like a picture of a milk maid. I agree 20 eggs! How many was she feeding?

  8. I wondered about the gingerbread mould too, and how to get gingerbread out of it, so had a look and right at the end of this short video about how to carve a traditional wooden mould is a demo of how to do it… I guess we think of removing it after it’s baked, but no, it’s removed before. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tgqMbjRE1Uw There’s also this about biscuit moulds (but then the biccy is removed after): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9TFKTTiMPoc

    I can’t knit to save my life but your grand daughter (?) looks very sweet in the pink jumper and the stripey one looks like it’ll be great when it’s finished.

    • Val, thank you for this information. Yes I was thinking of it as a tin rather than something you marked into the dough and removed before baking. Thank you so much.

  9. Re moulds & getting things out there from… Try a mould without sharp (or small – horrors!) corners or detail and grease well then dust with flour, even if its the non-stick kind. Good luck!

  10. No gingerbread here. But zippers, yes and the more the merrier. Glad you got over the hurdle! And, you know you will find something you must buy!! Splurge, you deserve it!

  11. You got so much done this week! And I have only done one zipper too, back in 9th grade, so maybe I will have to try one again.

    I had a job where I had to explain the things in a historic house, and simultaneously remind people not to lean on the walls etc. Not so boring as just lurking, nor so friendly as mingling. It was enough to make me feel REALLY sorry for the poor people who work in the Sistine Chapel and just have to bellow at everyone to be quiet and reverential, or the poor people who work at touch tanks in aquariums, and constantly have to tell everyone to handle the little animals gently. Those jobs would give me high blood pressure.

    I will stop thinking about those pressure-filled jobs and go on to imagine the yarn and fabric shop where we are meeting to lurk, mill about, and mingle. I will be having a creme brulee with blueberries, please, and just an Americano for coffee. And a cinnamon roll to go, for tomorrow.

  12. cappuccino and carrot cake!

  13. That little museum is great!! I like that fire screen, lovely. The zip looks perfect! No one would know it had been 49 years since your last one. Youtube saves the day again. 😀 How not to buy yarn- leave all money and plastic in the car. Only bring in enough money for the thing you need to buy.

  14. Thank you for sharing that wonderful museum with us. I’m in love with that swan pin cushion and the fabric you’re using for that skirt is adorable!

  15. claire93 said:

    well done on your zip Cathy! and that fabric is so much more appropriate for a skirt than the one you first wanted to try. Is it also for Little Miss F? because it’ll look great with her new sweater!
    Thank you Cathy, Lynn and Wild Daffodil for your job descriptions of Lurking, Mingling and Milling About . . . I’ve done some amateur Mingling, but I rather fancy Milling About, especially in a craft shop, I reckon I’d be pretty good.

  16. Oops – I also meant to add that, in answer to your question ‘how do you resist the pull of yarn/fabric?’, the answer is that, very often, I don’t.

    • Resistance is useless!

    • claire93 said:

      never, Lynn, the answer is “never!”

      • I now know how to resist the pull. 1, talk about a different town immdiately before leaving the house causing you to turn the wrong way at the bootom of the road. 2 Get caught in a traffic jam getting back to the right direction. 3 Stop at a petrol station and have a 5 minute battle with the petrol cap which inexplicably just turns round and round and won’t come out, until you lock the car and start over. By now you are running late for the eye test and barely have time for the thing you have gone in for to the yarn/fabric emporium. It works!

        • Oh no! That sounds quite stressful – time for a sit down.

        • claire93 said:

          that’s sounds like so many things to remember to go wrong lol. My way is a lot easier: leave husband and dog in car while you just nip in . . . that way you really do have to nip in and out for fear husband and dog will both melt in this heat!

      • Yes I can see that is a better way. I have a husband all I need is a Gibbs.

  17. Good job with the zip – it goes up and down and it looks neat!
    I would love a job where I would get paid to ‘lurk’. I used to have one where I was paid to ‘mingle’ which isn’t that far off 😉

  18. A job – an actual job ‘lurking’!!! Ha!Ha! That made me chuckle!
    Triumph with the zip! Well done.
    The pink jumper looks perfect with plenty of growing room – I always make things big – they can always roll up the sleeves – then it lasts and lasts. We have a famous green jacket I made for Miss E when she was 18 months, and she wore it till she was 6, Little Miss M, now 5 is still wearing it – it seems to be magic!
    Mermaid hair! I bet it looked beautiful – great technique – I wonder if I can persuade Miss E to create mermaid hair for one of Granny’s photo shoots?! Should have thought of that when we were on our holiday.
    My weekend is going to be mostly sorting out photos, my computer is still playing up.
    Hope yours is more fun!

    • It got a bit boring all that lurking amongst the fossils and flints. Such items have gone down from a whole room of them to one small display case, it is dumbing down I know but more fun now.Miss F seems to think the wet plaits well worth the mermaid hair! Sure Miss E will love it. Good luck with the photos. I am just back from the eye test, I have a small cataract apparently, but too small to do anything about. Anyway I have treated myself to new specs, here in a fortnight. I have a very exciting trip to Leeds tomorrow, and Mr E is playing minature railways!

  19. I wonder if the gingerbread with oats in is more like parkin? It would completely explain the oats and the use of moulds, as you make a batter and it’s more of a cake than a biscuit. In fact, thinking about it, it makes no sense for gingerBREAD to be a cookie at all. Or even a cake. Someone must have written a history of the stuff…
    And look at that zip – I told you it wouldn’t be a problem!

    • I spent a lot of time last week thinking about gingerbread, which is either a cake or a biscuit and not bread at all. It warrants a lot more investigation. You did indeed tell me zips would not be a problem. My biggest dilemna in the end was where to place the zip in relation to waist band and bottom seam… and then how to fit the attachment to the machine, what with pin to the right sew one side etc etc. I tried it out on some spare fabric to see where it actually stitched. The best hint I picked up was to unzip it a bit to get past the top bit, oh and to tack it in place first.

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