5 things I love about London

Only three days until I fly across the pond to attempt to settle in Washington, DC. I feel like this two-month stay in London just flew by! I’ve grown quite fond of this city and feel very privileged to have been able to experience a slice of British life.

~~

As a special hommage, here are 5 things I particularly enjoyed about London (I am not counting obvious things such as Kensington Garden, shortbread biscuits, free museums etc…) With a little help from the talented photographers on Flickr:

~~

Dans trois jours on quitte Londres et on s’installe à Washington, DC. Voici 5 choses qui me manqueront particulièrement (bon, je ne compte pas Kensington Garden, les shortbreads, les musées GRATUITS, le charme des petites rues so british et tout et tout…) Jolies photos trouvées sur Flickr.

~~

~~

#5:

Disappearing London (3), by Gervaulx

"Disappearing London (3)," by Gervaulx

~

The courteous and sympathetic British police officers who found my wallet (including my GREEN CARD! *That* was a scare.) just a couple of days after it was stolen by a pickpocket. I was amazed at how nice and thorough they were, even for such a “minor” crime. Thank you!!!

~~

Eh oui! Les gentils policiers qui ont été super gentils et pros quand on m’a volé mon portefeuille, et me l’ont retrouvé en 2 jours!! (il y avait tous mes papiers dedans, y compris ma carte verte… ça aurait été une galère sans nom de repartir aux US sans…) Bon faut dire que quand on vit aux US, on apprécie les policiers gentils et polis…

~~

~~

#4:

David Suchet / Poirot by Holypug

David Suchet / Poirot by Holypug

~

The fact that EVERYDAY on British TV there are Agatha Christie adaptations starring the great David Suchet as Hercule Poirot. My love for the little Belgian (“NOT French”) detective started many, many years ago.

In fact, my mother finally “weaned” me off bedtime stories at the ripe old age of 8 by reading me half of an Agatha Christie novel, which I then had to finish by myself if I wanted to know “whoddunit.”

~

Quand on a, comme moi, grandi avec Hercule Poirot, on est vraiment, mais alors super contente quand ils passent des adaptations de romans d’Agatha Christie en boucle à la télé!!!

~~

~~

#3:

Mystery Yellow Woman at Spitalfield by Pit Van Meeffe

Mystery Yellow Woman at Spitalfield by Pit Van Meeffe

~

The quirky yet classic elegance of many Londoners. Love the tailored coats, feminine shoes, cardigans over liberty dresses, crazy colors.

~

L’élégance décalée de beaucoup de Londonien(ne)s. Le savant mélange entre le côté classique intemporel et les couleurs/accessoires totallement inattendus.

~~~


~~

#2:

Cardinal Humes Charity Shop by Canis Major

Cardinal Hume's Charity Shop by Canis Major

~

Charity Shops: in a city as expensive as London, there’s got to be a trick to getting cool stuff for less. In the case of charity shops, MUCH less. They are everywhere, and the prices are usually really reasonable.

~~

Heureusement qu’ils sont là, ces charity shops, parce que dans une ville aussi chère que Londres, où est-ce qu’on trouverait des supers fringues et babioles pour presque rien?

~~~

~~~

#1:

Liberty Stack by Ravenhill Designs

Liberty Stack by Ravenhill Designs

~

Libertyyyyyyyyy!!!!

Thanks to the web, I discovered where one should buy one’s supply of Liberty while in London. For about half of the usual price (actually, much less if you only need bits).

~~

Grâce à quelques petites recherches sur internet, j’ai maintenant de nouveaux fournisseurs de Liberty à moitié prix (ou moins si on se satisfait de petits coupons)

FO: Punky Brewster skirt

For some reason this skirt reminds me of Punky Brewster, the main character of this show I used to watch in the 80s. She was this sassy kid who was really into super bright colors and mismatched shoes…

This skirt marks the end of a long sewing hiatus. I’m not too confident about my sewing skills yet, and I think I got Fabric Paralysis, like when you just stare at all this great fabric in your stash, and it’s just too much pressure, as if there was no way you could live up to it?

Anyway, the fabric is a thrift store purchase I’ve been meaning to use for a while. It’s got this great texture, kind of like seersucker, and of course I loved the glorious green color, which is really hard to photograph by the way…

So I sort of made this skirt as I went along, without a pattern. It’s really very simple but I’m really happy about how it turned out and how it fits (in spite of the bad job on the zipper!). I love that it’s so colorful and invigorating.

Holding Pattern

texturedtunicwip1.jpg

This is as far as I’ve gotten with the Textured Tunic after knitting up one ball of Chunky AL. I’m waiting for my Webs yarn order to arrive…

See, what I usually do is I’ll check out yarn options at my LYS to see which one I like best, and buy one ball to get started on my project (because I have to keep that momentum going, can’t wait!!)… and then I’ll buy the remainder at a discounted rate on the web.

I would love to support LYSes more, but what can I say, I’m broke!

So while I’m waiting on that, I thought I should raid the stash and start a project using that KnitPicks Swish yarn I bought a while back. I still have a couple of balls in Asparagus from Presto Chango, and 4 unused balls in Nutmeg.

So here you go! I’ve just started a sweater for Dil, Gabe’s nephew: it’s called Mister Escargot and it’s from the Tricot Baby catalog No.140 by Bergère de France.

escargotpull.jpg

Now that I’ve got a new project going, I can go back to my ER marathon virtually guilt-free!

How I killed Laura Palmer

As I intuited, not much ended up getting accomplished this past week-end, in spite of my crafty plans. Extreme laziness compounded by lack of sleep made yesterday particularly useless. Saturday was consumed by figuring out the details of my Halloween costume, which I ended up aborting 40 minutes before the party was supposed to start.

I actually thought I had a brilliant idea: I was going to be Twin Peaks’ Laura Palmer (the dead version), involving scary “dead girl” make up and a plastic tarp – Laura Palmer’s body is found “wrapped in plastic” by Pete Martell. I figured i could just get a pleated skirt, a plastic tarp, a couple of props and wear my blonde wig.

Well, first of all, the props didn’t work out: I went hunting for a half-heart pendant like the one Laura has, but i couldn’t find one anyhwhere. I assumed I had a Sharpie at home somewhere (but didn’t), which I would have used to write “Diary” on a notebook. I also wanted to carry a cassette player to play the Twin Peaks theme song, I thought that would have been pretty funny, but of course our spotty internet connection chose to go dead just when i really needed it to download the song and record it.

Anyway, the major hurdle was actually the plastic tarp: it started to dawn on me that wearing it would get very uncomfortable, very fast. Not to mention having my arms stuck inside all night.
The wig also was a disaster: it’s actually platinum blonde, with curls everywhere – not at all Laura Palmer-like. I tried to drench it in hair gel, and gave it a bit of a haircut, but it just made it uncomfortable and smelly. I ended up giving up on the idea entirely at like 10pm, and finally just went as a female physicist, with oversize fake glasses, hair pulled back in a bun and a calculator in my pocket… So laaaaaame. Arg.

As it turns out, when I told people at the party was my costume was originally going to be, most of them had no idea who Laura Palmer is.

Laura Palmer looking dead

Definitely dead

Inauguration

I am finally sitting down, with a working internet connection, ready to unleash upon the world some of my latest creations and attempts at creativity. Let’s hope that the impending week-end will bring some progress. Procrastination has always been my worst ennemy.

In addition to the different projects I want to keep working on, I do have to find some sort of idea for a Halloween costume. I do have a blond wig lying around somewhere… Maybe I could put on a pink dress and be Miss Piggy? I also like the idea of being a Little Pony, with a purple spandex bodysuit, fake eyelashes and glitter everywhere… mmmmh… This is going to be a tough one.