Wednesday, August 25, 2010

not dead, just a bit broken

Sorry for the extended absence. I've had a couple of weeks of crazy hours at work, but that's why I have a lovely mini week now and practically feel like I'm on holiday even though I'm not. I like that about my job. Sometimes.
I have been doing things other than working, I just haven't found time for blogging about them. My main "entertainment" of the last week or so has been throwing myself in at the deep end with my gocco. Oh my goodness. I really had no idea what I was getting myself into. I'm doing a three-screen print and I think I've been a bit over ambitious. Here's the scene of the first screen being printed. I fully expected to have some registration disasters, so printed absolutely loads of the first screen. That meant I spent five hours hunched over the gocco, kneeling on this cushion. I spent so long in that position that Lola actually curled up and went to sleep on my back. In hindsight, it was not really the most sensible set up and I had backache for a couple of days afterwards.
When I printed the second screen yesterday, I set up on the kitchen table with the idea that it would spare my back. Well, it might have done, but thanks to my stupid design, I had major problems with registration, so printing the second screen took ten hours. I've learned a lot about gocco through my mistakes, including the fact that ten hours hunched over the kitchen table leads to approximately the same amount of pain as five hours hunched over while kneeling on the floor. Oh, dear. One more screen to go. Ha! That crazy looking contraption in front of the gocco is my attempt at making a registration plate. It didn't really work too well, but then it was made out of a paperback book, a block of wood, a wobbly bit of plastic and shedloads of masking tape, so what did I expect? I'm glad I printed so many of the first screen and actually wish I'd printed even more. By the time the third print is done, I think I'll be lucky to have more than a handful of prints that have actually worked. We live and learn!
I've seen a lot of good films lately. Graham and I were both off on Monday, so went to the cinema twice and even squeezed in dinner in between. It was a top date. We saw The Secret In Their Eyes and The Illusionist and they were both brilliant. Earlier in the week, I was on my way home when I got caught in the rain. I happened to be right outside the cinema at that point and a film I had quite fancied was just about to start, so I took myself on a surprise trip to the cinema. (Actually, the film didn't start for another half an hour or so, but I managed to entertain myself with coffee and cake in the interim!) It's the first time in ages that I had been to the cinema on my own and I had forgotten how much I enjoyed it. Since I don't have any pictures of my cinema outings, here are some gratuitous cat shots.
I made the cats a hat to wear. Poppy was very obliging.
Lola refused to even try it on.
Nope, definitely not happening.
In other news... Ouch. My fingers are still very sore and I miss sewing a lot :( There's a new sewing club/happening starting up at a fun new place just round the corner from my house, one of those bring your own sewing along and eat some cake type things and I am sad not to be able to go along and sew sociably. I am starting to wonder if I will ever be able to sew again. Waaa! I did think gocco could be the new route for me (and I've come up with quite a few gocco plans, all of which are much simpler than the one I'm in the middle of just now!) but I just need to decide whether I'm going to sacrifice my back or my hands to the crafting cause... Ha! I'm only joking - I'm sure I can find a gocco set-up that won't hurt my back at all, especially if I stick to single screens.

My blog rustiness means this has taken rather a long time to write. I need to run and get something to eat before work. I promise I'll try to blog again soon.


  1. Hurrah for you being back! The gocco looks very exciting - I actually squinted to see if I could figure out what you have going on there! And bloody hell, those fingers look painful,maybe you need some Michael Jackson-esque white gloves to cover them up so you can sewing in relative comfort... ;-) x

  2. ouch! they look awfully sore! have you found out if its def the sewing causing it? :(

    that gocco production line looks epic! can't wait to see the outcomes !

    p.s i feel your pain with the long time to write thing! me too!

  3. Yeah and that's my good hand! I couldn't hold the camera still enough with my left hand to take a photo of the right. Probably just as well for anyone who might be eating their dinner while they read my blog...

    I tried the white gloves! They just proved why Michael Jackson was famous for singing/dancing and not embroidery! Ha!

    It is definitely the sewing causing it among other things like cleaning, doing dishes and chopping onions and garlic - so you can see it's really hampering my domestic goddess-ness! Ha! I picked up a pin for 30 seconds a few days ago and was in instant agony. I'm hoping if they heal up properly, I can go back to sewing gradually. In the meantime, I will just have to get better at drawing and fast! :)

    ps Promise to reveal the gocco prints once they are finished, hopefully at the weekend.

  4. Try some natural lanolin, Lansinoh is a good hypoalergenic one (designed with sore nipples so find it on the baby aisle) it's a bit pricey but if you cover your fingers and wear cotton gloves at night it should help. My left index finger gets like that when I have a marathon knitting session, I now have the fingers from industrial washing up gloves that I have cut from the gloves and just wear over my finger to stop the soreness, it doesn't stop it but I can get alot more knitting done before the bleeding starts.
    Hope you are soon mended xxx

  5. Thanks, Daisie. I'm quite hopeful that I could sew while wearing just the fingers from rubber gloves. Once my hands are a bit more mended I will give that suggestion a try. I've been spending quite a lot of time wearing cotton gloves in bed lately. It makes me feel very silly. I always have to do either jazz hands or a Michael Jackson impression as I'm getting under the covers. I've got various new lotions and potions from the doctor just now, but I'll keep an eye out for Lansinoh :)

  6. crikey, that looks painful. did you try latex gloves? or plastic needles? BAH to your fingers. BAH. Are you still able to subtitle?

    In other news - I love your kitchen table!

  7. Haven't you ever noticed me cleaning my blood off the keyboards at work? Sadly, I do not joke... I've gone steroid crazy this week, though, and my fingers are looking and feeling much better. Yay!

    I'm glad you like my table :) It was originally my granny's kitchen table and all my cousins remember sitting around it with about 20 relatives at a time. My cousin was visiting from Australia last year and couldn't believe how small it was. The formica's pretty badly damaged at the other end and I'm sure we'll want to replace it with a swankier table one day, but I feel the pressure/responsibility of keeping it for the Donald clan and will never be able to part with it. (Don't tell Graham!)


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