27 Feb 2015

Sketchbook Drawings for Embroidery


Last few weeks I’ve been drawing in the evenings. Mostly while watching something on one of those subscription film services online with James. Anyway, I was looking for some embroidery inspiration earlier this month and looked through Ingrid Eggimann-Jonsson’s book “Yllebroderier” it got me started just drawing things from what I saw in the book. I haven’t looked in it for a week now but I’m still drawing and plotting. I would love to make something bigger in wool embroidery. The starting a new project nerves are certainly twitchy. But time! Gha, there really isn’t enough time right now. I guess the sketches won’t go anywhere. Now do you have any sketches that have to wait? Does it frustrate you?

Tecknat broderi inspiration och vill börja med ett stort broderiprojekt, men tiden räcker inte till.

22 Feb 2015

Hearing Impaired? BAHA? What am I talking about, really?

I’ve previously said Freja is hearing impaired. Some in the UK use the world deaf for all hearing losses but I don’t like it so for me it’s hearing impairment if there is some hearing and deaf if there is no hearing or a very limited amount of hearing. Just to be clear with what I mean when I say hearing impaired.

Freja can hear with her aid and it is working really well for her. After all she got fully functional inner ears. That might sound strange to you because if there’s nothing wrong with her inner ears why can’t she hear? Well if sound can’t get to the inner ear it’s a little tricky. Freja got something called Microtia, it means she have underdeveloped outer/middle ears. Some children with this condition don’t even have ears, some have one normal ear and one Microtia ear. Freja got two Microtia ears, one small ear and one with a shadow ear. Simply put both are malformed. They don’t know why this happens, however in around 70% of the cases there is a genetic cause and it can also be linked to other conditions. In Freja’s case it’s a total mystery.

The most common question we still get from both friends, family and curious strangers about her hearing impairment is what they plan to do about her ears/hearing. What is the plan?? What are they going to do? Have you been scheduled in for the one big surgical fix?

As well-meaning these questions might be it does get repetitive after a while. Mostly because the plan and the fix have already been put into place and it is what they see right in front of their eyes. It’s called a hearing aid. Even after explaining this multiple times people still wonder why they don’t do re-constructional surgery in the ear and the answer is complication risk being well over 90% with a success rate very low. Hearing aids do the job loads better. 

To get sound to Freja’s inner ear she wears a bone conductor, it’s a hearing aid designed to send sound via vibrations through the scull bone to the inner ear. It is a pretty impressive piece of kit. She’s been very lucky to be fitted with a BAHA (Bone Anchored Hearing Aid) on a headband from when she was about five months old. When she is a little older she’ll get an adapter implanted straight on her scull bone instead of the headband, hence the name. That’s pretty much “the plan” for her hearing. When she’s about nine and if she wants it she can have plastic surgery to get normal looking ears. They won’t work in regards to hearing but they will look “normal”. We’re leaving that choice entirely up to her.

Now you now a little bit more about Freja’s hearing impairment and what we’re doing to aid her physically. There’s obviously lots more than that to it and I’d like to tell you more about our everyday life in future posts.

20 Feb 2015

WIP - Hearing Aid Friendly Hat

Since making the baby bonnets I’ve been thinking about making Freja some BAHA friendly hats. So far I’ve only done some sketching and I thought I had a pretty good idea of how to make it work. Up until we went to audiology the other week for Freja’s routine check-up and got some really good news. Because they had received some extra funding to help children like Freja she’ll be fitted with two BAHA’s later this spring. That is absolutely amazing news because essentially it means she’ll be able to localise where sound is actually coming from. With one aid it’s not possible. However, that has left me with some more thinking and sketching to do. As simple as it sounds it’s proven trickier than I thought, especially having to take two aids in to the equation instead of one. Above are some small drawings of my thoughts so far. We’ll see how it goes.

19 Feb 2015

Cork Board Makeover

We had been thinking about this for a while. Wanting to put something up on our wall we could vary without having to make our landlord cry over all the holes the day we move out. I think in the end James had the idea of a cork board. We can pin whatever we want on it and change it whenever we want no harm done. It’s good for keepsake pictures, photos, postcards, quotations and poetry (yeah, James write a lot of poetry). But cork boards in my book are ugly! Seriously ugly.

As usual I got a little ahead of myself and forgot to take any before pictures so I’m afraid you’ll have to make do with your imagination on this one. It looked like your average school cork board just a lot smaller, 60x90cm to be more exact. Very uninspired cork brown. I’m sure you get the picture. To make it less brown and more quirky we had the excellent idea of covering it with a nice fabric. It was very straight forward actually and took maybe 20 minutes in total. I cut a piece of fabric the size of the entire board - frame included, ironed it, covered the frame in masking tape and used spray adhesive to mount it on the board. When it had dried for a few minutes I just used a craft knife to cut off the excess fabric and peeled the masking tape of the frame. Voila! Much better. Maybe one day I’ll paint the frame too, we’ll see. Now we only need to start putting more things on it!

Anslagstavla som jag klätt med tyg.

10 Feb 2015

A Tea Cosy for John


I didn’t mean to go so quiet. James had some time off and we were busy being a family. Going to playgrounds, playgroups and the library. Letting Freja run around to her hearts content. That sort of thing. Now grandpa is visiting and James is off again. If it means more time for Mamma Bessant to catch up on… well pretty much everything, I’m not so sure. But a little sewing time have been appreciated now that I have got my electric sewing machine pedal working again. After being without for over six months it feels like such a freedom having it back. Perhaps it’s a little silly but my am I happy to have it back in good working order!

There’s nothing wrong with my hand powered one seam only Singer but when you have to plan and plot French seams into every project it gets a little limiting after a while. Anyhow, father-in-law wanted a new tea cosy for his little tea pot. I said can do and made this in an evening. Not a favourite fabric of mine but the in-law picked it and is happy with it, so I’m happy too. Both the outer and the lining fabric is recycled.

Tehuva till svärfar.