Monday, 16 February 2009


This is what the villages all around the city of Basel look like at the moment - all decorated ready for Fasnacht (Carnival). It is a mega event and I couldn't even begin to explain about it here. The Fasnacht of Basel will take place this year from the 2nd to the 4th of March and in the surrounding villages next weekend. For the children the Fasnacht starts this Thursday afternoon, when they take part in a parade in their villages, all dressed in costumes they have often made themselves at Kindergarten and school. My son's Kindergarten will be owls this year and they have been working hard on their costumes. The parents don't get to see the costumes until perhaps one day before the parade, when they proudly bring them home for a final fitting. For my son it is his first Fasnacht parade, for my daughter her fourth - in the past she has been a flame, a mouse and a penguin and this year she is going as a witch. I'll be posting some pictures of the event at the end of the week. Take care til then:)

Sunday, 15 February 2009

Messing around...

It's been a bit quiet on the jewellery making front recently, but I managed to grab half an hour last week and make this pendant:

silver pendant
I did it freehand by bending the wire around a marker pen and was amazed that it came out the right size for the Swarovski and glass beads. The downside - as it was only a practice piece, I made it with craft wire and I'm now kicking myself I didn't use my sterling wire. Still, that gives me a little project for next week :)

Still on the theme of hand-made ear wires, I tried this:

hand made ear wires

I love looking at dangly earrings and I love them on other people, but when I wear them myself I feel self-conscious and, well, dangly ! I remembered the pearl earrings I bought for my wedding were this style, with the ear wire coming directly out of the pearl and therefore not so long (bet there's a proper name for that !), so I had a go. They are really comfortable to wear.

Finally, I made this for my keyring

This just needs a silver charm hanging from the bottom to finish it off, but not bad for half an hour, eh ??

Tuesday, 3 February 2009

That woman

This is for all of you with kids and for those of you who haven't got kids you will know what I mean. You know when you go to the supermarket, there is always that woman ? You know, the woman who can't control her kids ? I should know - I have been that woman many times, but no more. Since my youngest has now started Kindergarten, I can shop alone. I can browse, I have time to deliberate which brand of flour to buy, I am silent. I'm not saying that my children are badly behaved, just that trolling round a supermarket for an hour bores them silly and brings out the worst in them. Oh yes, I have cried in the car on the way home, so cross ,frustrated and humiliated I have been. However, today that woman was someone else. Someone else's kids were running down the aisles whilst another woman was trying to keep it all together and get out as soon as possible. You know what - I didn't feel smug, nor did I feel superior, I just felt RELIEVED that this time it wasn't me. School holidays in a couple of weeks' time though.....

Monday, 2 February 2009

Where did you get that hat ?

A funny story to start the week. First off, I am not a hat person. Which means, in other words, I look pretty awful in a hat. In my defense, I think it has to do with the fact that I have short hair i.e. no nice romantic tendrils sticking out of the sides to soften the face etc - well that's my excuse anyway. However, just before Christmas we had snow and cold weather and, as I leave the house at 8.10 a.m. to take my son Alex to Kindergarten, I decided I really needed to wear a hat. Wrapped up in my thick ski jacket and thick boots and said hat, I stood at the door of the Kindergarten helping Alex knock some of the snow off his boots. Along came one of the girls, Naomi, and gave Alex a book to take home. As I was going straight home, I offered to take it with me there and then to save Alex carrying it at lunchtime. Naomi eyed me rather suspiciously, but said OK and handed the book over. At this point in the story, I should point out that, at 43, I am obviously no longer a slip of a girl, but am not wearing too badly either thank you ! At lunch later that day, Alex said, "Oh, Naomi said something really funny today". "What was that then Alex, " I replied, as ever interested to learn about all the goings-on at Kindergarten. "She said, don't forget Alex, I gave the book to your grandma". OMG!!! I blame the hat.....

Sunday, 1 February 2009

On the mend

Back again ! Actually, I've been here all the time, but bogged down by a flu thing for the best part of the last 2 weeks. First my son was off Kindergarten for a week, then my daughter off school the next week and in the middle of that I got the flu thing, husband away on a business trip in the States and of course no parents or parents-in-law to call on. Arrggghh!! Thank goodness for friends and neighbours ! Anyway, we're all better now (in my case thanks to paracetamol and no housework) and in the midst of all this doom and gloom I decided to make some earwires out of a couple of gold coloured headpins. handmade earwires
I'm quite pleased with the way they turned out, although I definitely need more practise. Having no hammer to work harden them, I let my son tap them with his wooden hammer ! The reason there is only one earring ? Whilst doing the second one I got carried away tucking the wire in and squeezed the pliers so hard I smashed the little spacer bead at the top of the earring! Duh! So I will have to re-do it, but, typically, have no more gold-coloured headpins. Hopefully things will be back to normal next week and I can pop into town for some supplies. Hope you've all had a great weekend :)


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