Raku Weekend

I had the pleasure of a real hands on Raku session this weekend where I set fire to my two eggs here. They even exploded out of a bin, that was a bit hair raising. You mould the clay in the usual way and bisque fire it. Then you glaze the pots and apply any oxides (used inside the turquoise pot) and stick them in a special Raku kiln and heat them to 1000 degrees. This isn't so out of the ordinary. The next bit is the quirky bit. You open the kiln whilst red hot and grab them with tongs, waft them in the air and shove them into a bin full of sawdust/hair/newspaper (combustibles) which set on fire from the heat of the pot. The unglazed clay turns black and the shock of the rapid air cooling crackles the glaze which can create exciting and spontaneous effects.


*insert play on the word 'potty' here*

Beth Sprouts is back! Sort of. Creative outputs have been limited due to child rearing, so to escape I have made plates and small bowls. With help from http://www.potterybristol.co.uk/
It brings me such joy to run out of the house and stare at mud for three hours, no really.


Beth Sprouts Handmade; knit revolution

It may seem as though I have had a creative block. But, I have been keeping my fingers warm throughout winter by knitting like a crazy person. Wool feels gross in summer FYI. So I have knit up a vest, a cardigan, a large fluffy jumper, a crocheted granny square jumper, a mohair dress, a lilac hat, a thick cardigan and on the go is a grey hat, a top/vest, a mohair cardigan, a yellow crochet skirt.

Phew. They're talking knit revolution, here here! You can find so much on ebay or in charity shops. I mainly make up my own patterns and since I have a penchant for the boxy shapes this is really rather simple. Usually 4 of 5 rectangles sewn together-voila! 

Check out Wool And The Gang for some inspirational modern knitwear.

The joyful thing about yarn is that there is no waste.

I urge you to try, it is long winded but rewarding. If you can't hack tedious knits then choose a big fat needle and big fat yarn. Also, crochet is much more forgiving for beginners.


You might live for now, but it might not be your fulfilment.


Beth Sprouts Pondering; guzzle guzzle guzzle

It does strike me as extremely worrying that with a rapidly increasing world population and temperature rises looming (so assuming less farmland available), that it is accepted that meat, clothing and general food should be getting cheaper and cheaper and that each individual has the right to a never ending supply. 

I am pretty sure that with more people, stuff should be harder to come buy. Should we not be rationing? Should we not be buying direct to skip the corporation who will subsidise our greed and increase debts elsewhere. Perhaps try and keep our hard earned individual wealth out of the hands of big business, government and the national debt etc. Keep your money passing locally. Have a meat roast once a month, or less.

It is hard. Everything is so distracting, sales, offers, advertising. If you think you have been using your free will then think again, even if you are trying.

Learn crafts, how to cook, how to sew and repair, how to grow veg in pots, CYCLE. Take your self away from the shops and magazines - you are being dictated to and losing your choice. 

Think first. Buy less. Source better. Keep trying I guess.


Beth Sprouts Trend; how amulesing!

If you like a charity shop, and boy do I, you will be very excited and I think easily gratified. Mules are coming back, I can just feel it in my bones. I am having a bit of an anti-chain store, anti-fashion magazine moment and have kept myself away for at least six months if not a year, so I am trying to use my subliminal powers of trend forecasting. So I may be wrong. But I will be in them you can count on that.

Mules haunted my early teens, they were very 'in' and yet they felt way to old and just seemed ugly. Maybe now I am of the age they are more appealing. Low healed and easy to air your tootsies. PLUS they were trendy not too long ago so the charity shop are bursting at the seams with them. Truelly a kid in candy store moment.

Wooh I wana be like you Carrie.


Beth Sprouts Handmade; gettin sweaty in calicut

Sooo, a dear chum got wedded in Calicut in Kerala in March. Now I should mention here that Calicut lends its name to Calico, the cotton fabric that was created here. Unrelated to this fact, me and her mum jumped in an autorickshaw to get to her favourite fabric shop. Good grief, I was in heaven. Four floors of gorgeous prints, I wish we had things like this in the UK, infact I wish we had the desire to have clothes tailored for ourselves, and to own unique an individual pieces. Ho hum.

So I got a load of stuff, which is great. And here are three pieces I have made so far. Erm, I hate ironing...waste of electricity...ahem...