Thursday, 20 October 2011

All in the bag: heaving out a winner

Twice in the last couple of weeks I have been listening to Radio 4 and heard people I know from university days, who are most definitely on the way to being Eminent (if they are not already) opining in a most grown-up and erudite fashion, the second time this morning when I was standing in the kitchen, enmeshed in domesticity, well wrapped up in a pinny and stirring up some double chocolate muffins.

I think that I am beginning to feel a failure, never having been invited onto Radio 4 and actually not doing too well on the grown-up front (although the very sagacious Angela did call me erudite recently; I am thinking of having a badge made with the label 'Erudite' to make up for my lack of an Important Job, or indeed Eminence).

Bag on a tree

I comforted myself with the thought that I do know how to knit socks (although I am struggling with my Postmodern Socks at the moment, not so much with the theory as the putting the postmodernism into practice), and that yesterday I made a Ruched Happy Bag and a Swatch Book Cover, both to be carried in my recently completed Multi Tasker Tote (made from a pattern by Anna Maria Horner) - fabric Pop Garden flowers in green by Heather Bailey, together with Bijoux Tile in ice blue and red (all from Saints and Pinners).

For Multi-Taskers everywhere

And anyone who has need of a Multi Tasker Tote must of course be multi-tasking, which seems to be a most happening thing to do, although possibly for credibility's sake the Efficient Multi-Tasker should be wearing a suit, and as you will see from the photographs so ably composed and taken by the Head Chef I am failing most sadly on the sartorial front, the recent vertiginous drop in ambient temperatures having necessitated the donning of vest, cardi and mitts (luckily we have B&Bs arriving tomorrow so lighting the fire is allowed (this is why I was making chocolate muffins again, and not of course for me to comfort eat while contemplating the ashes of my career ambitions, oh no)).

How not to stand

I would not dare criticize the Head Chef's competence in fashion photography. I hinted that the photographer must be below the subject for a slimming effect, and thus the suggestion was that I should stand on a very wobbly chair (one of whose ilk has been known to collapse under the weight of an only moderately large course attendee on a former unfortunate occasion).

Note the photographer's careful attention re extraneous objects in background of photo

On viewing the results of the Head Chef's shutter work and being asked to comment, I made the mistake of being honest, and ventured the opinion that the images were Not Up To Scratch at which point I found out that the fault was in the way that I was standing. It was good to clear that one up, and I shall be very careful not to stand in any pictures again.

Loops and pockets - how jolly!

I am happy to say that my jolly new multitasking bag is far more photogenic than Pomona the granny fashionista, the epitome of cardigan grunge chic, and I would ask you to admire the nifty little inside pocket, so artfully divided into sections for pencil and pen (for multitasking mummies always have such things handy for sticky moments in restaurants even when their offspring are way beyond the stage of having any call for such old-fashioned writing implements).

And the contents are even more exciting for one of my limited needleworking skills - I have made another Ruched Happy Bag, from Amy's wonderful pattern (you can see my first Happy Bag here); these are truly happy bags, for they make me most happy to have made such a professional-looking zippy bag.

And I have also made a Swatch Book Cover, from a Keykalou pattern, so that I may always be prepared with notebook to hand in case I have any Deep Thoughts, which I can write down in the hope that one day someone on Radio 4 would like me to expound them so that I, too, can join the pantheon of those who fulfilled their early promise and made their Aged Parents proud.

This is a rather nifty pattern, which works for the two sizes of Moleskine Cahier - it thus makes a good present, for wherever the recipient is located, they are sure to be able to find refills. Not only do Moleskine Cahiers come in large and small, they also come in ruled, plain, and squared, so by choosing the fabrics appropriately I have come to the conclusion that you can make these Swatch Book Covers as a present for almost anyone (can you hear the production line cranking up?). And what is even better about both of these patterns, they only use small pieces of fabric, so great for using up stash - just right for an thrifty Christmas as the world economy approaches ruin.

And now we come to the Very Important Bit: choosing the winner of the Sugru giveaway.

Can I help?

As I cast about for a receptacle capacious enough for all of you to fit in, my optics fell upon the Multi Tasker Tote and the Little Stranger lurking about with intent.

In here, you say?

As you will see, the Little Stranger needed a little explanation and encouragement, but I think she is beginning to understand the concept of the blog giveaway.

How far down?

A sausage roll is an added incentive - I am not sure what they put in dog sausage rolls, but I suspect that it is either Addictive or Mouse.

Oh, I see!

And so my little furry friend rootled around in the recesses, and out she came with a winner.

Got one!

The photograph doesn't make it clear, but hip, hip, hooray for Mrs Micawber - perhaps you could let me know your address so that we can get the Sugru winging its way to you.

It's Mrs Micawber . . .

The Little Stranger was disappointed that there was only one winner to be rootled for today, but hey, who knows, another day may bring another giveaway.

Now I must get back to the production line: the geese are getting fat . . . .


gill said...

Congratulations to Mrs Micawber!
I love your 'random number generator'!!!

Angela said...

Congratulations Mrs M on winning - I am now basking in the joy of being labelled 'sagacious'
And fear not dear, and erudite, Pomona, YOU could never be classed a failure.
You cook, you sew, you can balance on garden benches...and you know all sorts of random stuff about Victorians and art...and your family and friends adore you. Besides all that, waffling on Radio 4 means very little.
blessings, oh great multi-tasking woman! xx

Amy said...

Oh, I love your matchy, matchy set and your bag looks flawless! It's funny, whenever I am honest with my husband, it is usually gets turned around quickly to being my fault too.

Annie said...

Congratulations Mrs Micawber :D
Does The Little Stranger have any canine random number generator tips? I have the whippets in training for my soon-to-be first giveaway!

elizabethm said...

Oh I know that radio 4 sensation! It came home for me when on the same day a girl from university presented a panorama programme, another was on the radio representing the government's position as a junior minister for something or other and then I opened the paper and there was another writing for the independent!
Bet they cant makebagslike that though. Love the pocket

Sarah - Red Gingham said...

My dear you may feel like a failure at the moment but if the world came crashing down (and probably will at some time) who would be the winner then? Yes she who can cloth her family, cook delicious meals and generally feels very comfortable with homely ways. You will never be a failure!!

And that bag with its matching contents is heavenly! such pretty fabric and so useful. Bet those Radio 4 people would kill for such a kit.

sarah-jane down the lane said...

Hello your eminence!
I listen to Radio 4 every day in an effort to improve myself and have not yet heard anyone I know. With the exception of Melvyn Bragg whom I know from the telly-bob and the South Bank Show, oh and David Tennant of course, who is the REAL Doctor Who! (sorry Matt, love you too!)
I shall be writing to Woman's hour forthwith and demanding you be given a slot immediately to discuss the merits of home-baking and making, now that would be a lovely hour!

Sarah x

Katy Cameron said...

Look, you reach a far wider audience than your friends did, after all, they were only on Radio 4, which has a relatively small audience and only in one small country, however YOU get to broadcast to the whole world on here, therefore you must be more successful than them :oD

I think Little Stranger is catching on to this giveaway lark too, although I must work out how to bribe her...

Nicky said...

I am sure Radio 4 and the rest of the nation miss out but we cannot give you up to a career in the media can we!?? Love the bags and I'm sure that Archbishop would be jealous of your multiple multitasking talents and perhaps of little stranger's tidbits!?

Madelief said...

Hi Pomona,

Thank you for the advice on the Dahlia's! Perhaps I will try leaving them in the ground and see what happens next year.

Your bags look beautiful!

Have a lovely evening,


greenrabbitdesigns said...

Well all I can say is that Radio 4 don't know what they're missing!!
Gorgeous bag and the fabric is beautiful. :)
Congrats to the winner!
Vivienne x

Inspiredbyfelix said...

Hilarious post (particularly the photos and the doggie sausage rolls!) and the bag set is fab, luurve the zippy :) x

Heather said...

This is such a beautiful bag! I love the colors and the fabric. So pretty!~

Kay G. said...

This is so so "doggone" funny!
Your matching bags are beautifully made, you should be proud of them!

Frances said...

Well, I might not be the official winner of your giveaway, but let me tell you Pomona that anyone who reads your posts is definitely a winner!

Believe it.

It is so odd to get older and from time to time see some of your former classmates or other sorts of mates appear in the media or other places. I usually have to do a bit of a juggle and think...could this be true. Him? or Her?

Anyhow, let us all celebrate each of our own accomplishments, true exploits, imagination, kindness, and all those other bits worth celebrating.


Mrs. Micawber said...

Oh frabjous day! Calloo, callay! she chortled in her joy.

This most generous Unbirthday Gift came very near to being a birthday gift - in fact it was probably still my birthday in American Samoa (or somewhere on the far side of the globe) when the Little Stranger heaved my name out of the bag.

Now that I've finished chortling: Who says you don't have an important job? Supplying your family and guests with double chocolate muffins, best gingerbread, and clean sheets, and Blogland with sewing and knitting inspiration, not to mention exquisite and amusing prose, are MUCH more important than nattering away on the radio.

I will leave you with a quote from a Very Wise Man named C.S. Lewis:

"A housewife's surely in reality the most important work in the world. What do ships, railways, mines, cars, government, etc. exist for except that people may be fed, warmed, and safe in their own homes?... We wage war in order to have peace, we work in order to have leisure, we produce food in order to eat it. So your job is the one for which all others exist."

Thank you so much for the giveaway, and for everything else you do to brighten the days of so many people.

(I will e-mail you the info you need.)

Mrs. Micawber said...

P.S. All of that, and I completely neglected to say that the bags are beautiful. I love bags with lots of pockets and tabs and goodies inside.

dragonfly said...

You are very naughty. I have a rather large pile of WIP's and now all I can think of is making notebook covers.

Love the expression on Little Stranger's face!

Anonymous said...

What beautiful bags! I often think that the small, seemly not-so-important-stuff is actually what makes the biggest positive impact on the world. Time spent creating things, talking to people, caring. Other seemingly-more-important-stuff is actually mostly hot air. Hugs.
Jen x

Little Blue Mouse said...

Your bags and swatch book cover are fabulous!

Helen Philipps said...

Hello Pomona Well, I am surprised you have never been on R4 and think they should remedy that at once. In the meantime, you are rather wonderful at all the other things you do....and the bags are just lovely. I smiled at the photo session....
Hope you enjoy your weekend.
Helen x

Louise said...

wow this bag is fantastic, well done you!

Planet Penny said...

Well I'd rather have your bag making talents and eye for colour than be pontificating on Radio 4! I've just fallen in love with your 'Little Black Dog' as I have one of my own who pops up on my blog despite my best efforts to the contrary. He is hopeless with the whole drawing a ticket thing too, and tends to run away with the hat!
I've not visited before, love your blog,I'll be back!
Penny x

Sue said...

Well Radio 4 are missing out, but all to our advantage, and blogs are far more visual. Well I know the problems of a photographer husband, he who goes equipped with bags of equipment and tripods, whilst I merrily snap away with my trusty little pocket camera. Size and ease of use being my 2 main thoughts when purchasing said item, though it helps that it is pink as the younger male members of the family don't want to borrow it! However I am now digressing and wanted to say that your multi-tasking bag looks fabulous and definitely up to holding lots of fascinating multi-tasking contents!

susan said...

You should be on Radio 4 because you are hysterically funny, and I would rather be able to make fab chocolate muffins and quilt any day than have a 'career'. Never was particularly ambitious me!

Barbara said...

Great looking muffins and look a good size to be able to enjoy without imbibing too many calories.

Your recent needlework is lovely and as usual a very funny tongue in cheek piece of writing.

The first photo of the dog looks like he is buried in the grass with only his head showing!

Polka Dot Daze said...

Your amazing - your sewing is beautiful - your fabric choices are too die for.

Anonymous said...

Hi Pomona
sorry it's taken so long for us to get back to you, and thanks for blogging about us. In fact you bought what was my favourite design when we first started out (reminded me of canal boats!)... and there's nothing wrong with 'granny chic' in my view :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Pomona
sorry it's taken so long for us to get back to you, and thanks for blogging about us. In fact you bought what was my favourite design when we first started out (reminded me of canal boats!)... and there's nothing wrong with 'granny chic' in my view :)


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