Dozy ‘chilla

Trinity is back home with her teeth all rasped. She's very, very dozy, though; we had to leave her in the travel cage (not much bigger than she is) for a couple of hours because she was so floppy and feeble; I was worried that she was going to try and jump up on the shelves and end up hurting herself.

She's been wobbling round the floor for a couple of hours now – she can't hurt herself there, and hopefully it's getting it out of her system. Just a quick picture of her taking a break in the wine rack in the dresser (note the half closed sleepy-face eyes… They don't seem to get any more open than that currently):

It runs in the family

Well, it seems like no time since I was writing this entry, and now her sister, Trinity, is in the same position… She went into the vets this morning to have her teeth rasped – she's been eating with difficulty, rubbing her mouth and dribbling, all classic signs of a chinchilla with overgrown teeth. They do think that there is a genetic predisposition to this problem, which is quite a common one, but it's still worrying to see it appear quite so quickly in Trin.

Domino's been through this procedure twice now (she went back for a checkup in January), so I'm not too worried about Trinity, but I know there's still a risk. Paws crossed for the little one, please…

East of England show

There's something about shows that just makes me happy. I've visited the East of England show a couple of times before, and sadly this time there didn't appear to be any ratties or chinchillas. But there were sheep and cows and horses and raptors:

and impressive water features:

and frogs that make croaking noises when you run the stick across their backs (no, I didn't buy one. I thought it might jinx the knitting…).

My personal favourites, though, were the alpacas. Beautiful beasts, with amazing eyelashes:

and even more amazing fleece (available in bags). Again, I showed amazing restraint and didn't buy any. Hey, my spinning wheel's in Middlesbrough, and besides, there's at least 2 alpaca herds within cycling distance of here…

They even look cute with no fleece left:

bless 'em 🙂

Yes, yes, long time no post

Been very busy – sorry about that. For those following the knitting progress, Amber has been blocked but not yet seamed (I didn't notice the disgusting, wet dog smell from wet Summer Tweed that some have mentioned!), and I have finished the back, both fronts and half a sleeve (approximately) of 'Waves', J's sweater. He is getting impatient. Well, not really. If he did, I'd just tell him to get knitting himself. 😉

Marketing lunacy

Today, I had to get a prescription filled at Boots. So I treated myself to a sandwich and some apple juice for breakfast – gotta have some upsides, right? Anyway, the nice lady on the checkout informed me that I could get them cheaper under the meal deal if I picked out a yoghurt or some crisps or some fruit or something. So I ended up with a small plastic packet of 'Shapers Crunchy Apple And Juicy Grapes' for the remarkable price of -45p (RRP 70p). I'm suspicious of any product that contains pre-sliced apples, as they must be packaged in an inert atmosphere to stop them going brown, but hey, it's only 46 calories, and, according to the packet, 'DETOX FRIENDLY!'

Bonus.

Progress update

Lots of sewing this weekend! The stays got cut down to size, a waist tape inserted and the eyelets (one-piece grommets, but never mind) inserted. We then experimented with making a duct-tape double (from gummed brown paper tape) of me wearing the corset. It took around 2 hours, and I was in all kinds of pain by the time we were done… I may need a backup costume for Saturday. It worked well, though, and highlighted one final, unpleasant fitting problem with the corset. It stands out from my back at the top. I know this can be a problem for corsets and tops, but I thought I had this one sussed. 🙁

It may be that there is an easy solution, though. The back and front are boned with a significant amount of hoopsteel intended for petticoats. This stuff comes on a roll and has an intrinsic curve. I've been wearing it with a convex curve at the front (counterintuitive, but intended to make the point not stick out wildly), and a concave one at the back. Yes, they were originally intended to be the same, but I messed up attaching the back pieces. No, I didn't feel like doing it over; the amount of handsewing almost killed me as it was! Aaaanyway, in my genius, I reckon that if I wear it inside out, it might not stick out at the top back! And I think I'd quite like a concave tummy, actually. As long as the 'weiner' (thanks, Sempstress) doesn't stick out too far. The other thing that would help is shoulder straps – the stays should have some, and currently don't.

The chemise is nearly done; I tried tea-dying some of the lace that was far too white for the engagements, but it came out very dark. This surprised me, as it's very synthetic stuff. I have lots spare, but I don't know if I can be bothered trying again, or whether to just go for it as it is. It only needs that 'brightness' taking off it. Hmmm…

The first of the petticoats is all done! It's that hideous pink again, and with it on the dress dummy with the false hips and all, all I can think of is "Mrs Miggins' Pie Shop". It's my first attempt at cartridge pleating, and looks OK – even if the rows of stitches are probably too close together. Looks *huge* though. Urgh. Have a horrible feeling I'm going to look stupid in this…

Still, only two more petticoats, the gown and the stomacher to go! Heh.

And a special shout-out to Jez who sent me this gem of scholarly research into bare breasts. Though I have my doubts about drawing conclusions about societally acceptable clothing from ballad-sheet woodcuts, personally. Sounds like someone in a few hundred years trying to work out what we wore in the streets by reading 'Zoo' or 'Cosmo'.