Friday, December 30, 2011


Hello! I hope Christmas was restful, tasty and fun for everyone.

It's time to get on with the parade of Christmas gifts. As ever, not everyone got something hand made, but I came up with as many simple quick(ish) things as I could.
My grandparents had a wonderful old quoits set that we used when we stayed with them. I remember the rope quoits being quite heavy and rough, and I think the stand/base might have been wrought iron - it seemed to weigh a ton. It's such a simple game, suitable for all ages, so it seemed like a good 'whole family' present.

Wrought iron would have been great, but I made do with a wooden toilet roll holder, bought new and very inexpensively from at Hall Markets. I originally thought that a stand like this might need a wider base attached underneath to make it more stable, but with testing, it seemed to be fine as is. A good thing, as I don't have any woodwork skills to speak of.

My painting skills aren't much better. I had already bought little sample pots of enamel and done the first coats (yellow) when K suggested that spray paint might be easier (and noted that we had access to plenty of it). I persisted with the paint brush, did a shocking job of the blue layer - largely because I propped it upside down to paint the bottom and let it dry - but I had already painted the top as well, so the paint moved around and dried in uneven lumps. I don't have photos, but trust me, it was a mess. So then I lost time in the precious last week, scraping it all off to start again fresh with the spray paint. The result was not perfect, but much better.

For the quoits I followed these instructions for grommets though I didn't understand the splicing part and went my own way with that. I found that I could avoid having a thicker part by weaving the ends in just before finishing the third round of twists. They seem to hold together - but if they end up failing the kid test I will have another go at doing it the proper way. For the coloured stripes, I wound acrylic yarn around one third of the total length of rope. They definitely have an uneven, home made look but on the whole I'm pretty happy with them. It was fun spending some evenings working with rope instead of wool.


Michelle said...

I think the quoits set is AMAZING! I can't believe you put it together so beautifully. Well, I can believe it because it's you and you always do everything so well. But still! You know what I mean!

Taphophile said...

I am all amazement and admiration. They look like a lot of fun. :)

Melz said...

None of us knew they were homemade! I love them

Emma said...

Such a lovely idea for a gift, and the execution is very impressive!

Anonymous said...

My goodness, you're amazing, lovely daughter. I had no idea you'd made the set yourself. This is a wonderful gift!(All the Christmas presents were unwrapped too quickly this year and there wasn't enough discussion over them at the time.) ily ma

Carly said...

this is such an awesome handmade gift! love that you reinvented the toilet roll holder!