From the Magic Garden of Wonders, this year’s motto at Kiel Week’s Spiellinie

It’s been a little quiet again around here lately. Real life sometimes isn’t the fun you’d expect it to be.

At the beginning of May I suddenly started to have issues with my feet. Out of the blue I woke up one morning with an aching foot. As I could hardly walk anymore I saw the orthopedist who decided I had just overstrained my foot. Can’t be, and no, I didn’t change from sturdy winter boots to thin summer shoes, I don’t own such things. But he’s the expert, right? So it was painkillers and feet up, but it wasn’t long until the other foot started to ache as well.

All my best wishes and two thumbs up 👍 👍 to everyone who had or still have their own issues – feet and knees and viruses and the like. I would have loved to comment on everyone’s blog but was unable to.

Of course, Kiel Week took place without me this year, so no pictures except the one above which I took on Friday on a little detour on my way home from an appointment.

At least, all this fuss gave me enough time on my back to knit. I’m now one sock short of the next finished half dozen pairs.

And finally, after quite a while has passed since I applied for it, I’ll be getting help with my real life issues (health, money, work and general chaos). I’m counting on you, Mr. X!

Currently I’m in the middle of re-organizing my craft projects. I’ve put those out of my sight that lack ideas or material. The ones left plus some fresh ideas are now in a new lottery which will be starting soon. Right now I’m working on bits and pieces, finishing this and that but have nothing to show you yet.

The Art Lab will be freed from layers of dust and will become my main blog from July on. There are a lot of things on my list I want to try out, things that are different to what I have been working on so far. Of course, I’ll continue to blog on The Boudoir as well, albeit less frequently on both blogs for a while.

A word on spam comments: I love to read your comments – except the ones from someone who puts a What? under each and every comment from my readers, unaware of the fact hat Akismet is blocking this spam anyway. For a while though, I’ve limited the time you can leave your comment to only a couple of days, so hurry. 🙂



Activities in January

In January I didn’t have as much time for my craft projects as I had wished for but still managed to squeeze in a couple of things. I’m still busy, trying to untangle my life which will at least take me into March.

Alas only space for fifteen projects but I’ve been working on more which I listed below this tracker. So it’s not only one but two stars for finished projects, more later.

In late December I found a pretty 2018 planner, a bargain at the local TKMaxx. Only two days before that I had made a draft for a project tracker – exactly like the one in the book (they call it goal tracker). Now I don’t have to use various journals anymore but got everything in one place (well, almost). Besides a bucket list and a to-do list it has also got a not-to-do list (love the idea) and a lot of stickers to use. As each month has got a different header colour I’m using a corresponding colour pencil to mark off the things I’ve accomplished (yes, I know – but it looks cool).

The A4 size planner is from the Orange Circle Studio, the design is called Midnight desert.

Behind the scenes

The behind the scenes work continues.

A basket with finished scarves I never washed and blocked or blogged about properly is being given the treatment, one at a time as blocking space is limited (my second Wingspan scarf shown above). Five washed, seven to go. Watch this space. 😉

Most of my precious home-recorded VHS tapes have made space for books. Some will go without being watched again, some will at least be partly watched and a small part will stay, as long as the hardware lasts. Not sure what I’ll do with the tapes then. You can’t even donate them, nobody wants them anymore. The best thing I found in the depths of the internet was glueing them together to make small pieces of furniture. Hm.

The craft inventory list and the list of possible projects are growing profusely and I’m looking into an abyss there. Again. 🙄 Still, I’ll put together some kits with the material needed for new projects which I’m planning to start next year.

But before that the UFO Lottery will have my attention until the end of the year. A couple of projects will take some time to finish and some will only require little time and effort. These are the ones I’ll finish first so the list will become shorter, including things from the intended second round of draws (nos. 36 to 70, with a current total of 103 😀 ).


Pleading guilty

of looting and damaging a work of art or two 😉

Kiel Week is over and the huge playground Spiellinie on the slopes of Krusenkoppel is closed. So this morning I armed myself with some bags and a pair of scissors to go treasure hunting. I waited about half an hour in the queue, and after paying donating a small sum I got a little piece of paper stating the things I was entitled to plunder. Sadly, the hand made paper had all been used up in making rayfish, but five of the blue jellyfish went into my first bag. Then I gave the giant sea snake a shave and snipped a couple of strips from the seaweed. – After washing and ironing I’ll make the strips into new works of art.

Below are some pictures from my visit yesterday (Sunday) – this year’s motto was Wasser, Wind und Wellenwesen (water, wind and wave beings). The activities for the children include painting, weaving, paper making and building sculptures from mud and straw, they can listen to storytellers and become mud people in the mud bath, hammer boards to wooden castles or pirate ships, among lots more.

Reviving the UFO Lottery

not what it seems to be

A couple of days ago I felt a little stuck again. I couldn’t decide which one of my featured projects I should pick up. That’s when my old UFO Lottery idea popped up again. As I’m feeling a little better health wise I made a contract with myself: I’m going to revive the UFO Lottery.

but this 🙂

There were ten projects (out of twenty-seven) left in the original UFO Lottery, I’ve added another 25 tickets for a total of 35. Those went onto the top of the list, they’re the ones I want to finish the most. A lot of them only need a couple of hours work, some demand a little more time and attention. And there are still loads of other things that didn’t make it onto the list like test samples and the like. They might get a chance as well.

The first draw has taken place, the project is finished. More soon.

All nice and clean

Cityscapes #3, from my blog  jule b. – art lab

As I mentioned before, I have imported all of my stuff from my former blogs From The Boudoir and The UFO Garage & Fabric Depot.

This meant reading and editing 360 + entries, checking the links and – most of all – deleting every single picture and replacing them. Some of them got lost in the export/import business, some apperared in the wrong places. It’s done now and everythings’s nice and clean.

Apologies to those who follow my blog via email – you had to suffer a little. But you can now take a deep breath – it’s over.

There are still a couple of project pages left to clean up, but I’ll do that later as Kiel Week is starting next Friday and it’s time again for some ‘Shots of the day’ – I’ll try my best.

A Scent Of Lavender

Look what the postie brought – one of Claire‘s little surprises, an un-birthday present in January. It’s one of her little lavender sachets. Thank you! 🙂

And, also made by Claire – sorry, somehow I forgot to post this – a heart-shaped tree ornament which made it onto a seasonal bouquet for lack of a tree.


The Boudoir – Plans for 2015

Happy New Year and all the best wishes for 2015!

 First of all, a big ‘THANK YOU’ to all of my readers who encouraged me to continue my work, either by commenting or by just being there.  2014 was a little difficult for me, as due to some health issues I had to deal with some ups and downs.

Despite of that, 2014 was quite a successful year when it came to finishing projects. My projects list looks quite nice by now although I’ve added a couple of new items. 15 projects are off the list, which leaves me with a current number of 20. There are a couple of things which only need a little work to be done, so they will be the first ones to get the treatment. (Also, The UFO Garage & Fabric Depot is proud to announce the finishing of 14 projects in 2014.)

I’m quite happy about the way From The Boudoir is running. Which doesn’t mean I’ll be resting on my laurels. The Gallery pages will get some renovation work. Also, I will set up some new pages as projects come along. That means instead of posting my progress on the main page I will add to the individual pages so the blog won’t become too cluttered. And there will be a ‘news’ widget with updates on the projects and other stuff soon.

Plans for this blog also include a series on my finished scarves which I haven’t posted about properly yet. I’d also like to introduce the Günnis and DaveyDolls individually. And I think I’ll go diving for new inhabitants of The Reef. A big cardboard box full of old jeans is waiting to be turned into something special. The book project is still waiting and I’d love to try some art quilting.

During the last couple of weeks I have been busy working behind the scenes, restructuring my blogs. Of 19 blogs I ran in total at one time or another there are now 9 left. Some of you may know I ran a couple of blogs in German under another user name for my other (read: odd) projects. I’ve taken these blogs home and set them to private. The topics I posted about on these blogs will appear on my old and trusted sites in the future. This will include some experimental stuff on this blog – I’ve got a couple of ideas but didn’t have the time to try them out so far.

Now let’s roll up the sleeves and get some work done. ✂️

How Do You Store Your Inspiration?

I’ve currently taken a break in crafting because I suddenly felt that I had to do what I should have done years ago. Go through the tons of everything in my place that’s made of paper – my personal papers, my collection of press clippings (which I already halved two years ago) and most of all, loads of little scraps of inspiration.

Getting my inspiration from everywhere and everything, the question is how to store this ‘everything’.

I admire people who are able to put everything away in scrapbooks. I love scrapbooks. The only problem is I’m afraid of keeping one (or more) myself. Sticking these little scraps onto the pages with a dab of glue feels so final. They will remain there while I love to rearrange things. It’s hard for me not to think about it and just do it.

How do keep your inspiration? Do you have a scrapbook, a project folder or do you prefer a shoebox?

The Fabric Depot

A couple of project bags

My blog is known as The UFO Garage & Fabric Depot. Let’s talk about the latter. (Edit: my former blog)

Of course, every decent UFO Garage must have a fabric depot aka The Stash. Mine is a cabinet of drawers which holds about two thirds of the fabrics plus a couple of big plastic bins and some plastic bags for the remaining third. The cabinet measures 1.20 x 1.20 x .35 meters. That’s half a cubic meter of fabrics, plus another quarter in the bins and bags. Not enough to open a shop but clearly quite decent for a single person.

Today I went through one row of drawers in my cabinet because I was looking for a special fabric. I found it eventually, but I also found the stuff nightmares are made of. No, not tons of ugly fabrics, although I asked myself occasionally why I had bought this special fabric way back when. The sheer amount of fabrics was what caused the nightmares. And this was only twenty percent of the cabinet’s contents.

Oh dear. I think I need a plan.

After finishing my UFOs and WIPs which are mostly hand sewing projects, I’m going to switch to machine sewing. This is a decision I already made a while ago as my eyesight isn’t improving with age. And I noticed my hand stitches aren’t as tiny and even anymore as they used to be. But this will also mean I’ll have to say goodbye to a lot of patterns I’ve got on my list. And – maybe – in the end I’ll have to sell some of my stuff because I can’t keep the whole lot. More nightmares to come.

OK, but first finish the UFOs, then nightmares.