Some movement in the pinterest graveyard

So I’ve been meaning to post this for a couple of weeks.  There has been movement on the polystyrene cat blind pinterest graveyard. Whoo hoo!

When I say movement I do have to warn you that it is particularly slow and painful movement but it is definitely movement.

No, I haven’t made the blind. I was waiting to do that before I posted but that could take forever.
What I have got is some cat covered fabric.

I know it doesn’t look much but trust me it took some getting to. After making the stamps from a load of old rubbish against the advice of my nearest and dearest I took a breather.

When I finally felt up to the job I found the fabric I thought would work and cut it to size. The fabric is an old French linen cot sheet that my mum gave me. I have a bit of an obsession with vintage linen and my mum always looks out for old sheets at sales etc. If you’ve never tried full on vintage linen you have never slept. Honestly, vintage linen is like sleeping in a fairy-tale. If you find some then buy it buy it buy it.  Unless you are near me at the time, then hands off – it’s mine.

However for some reason the sheets my mum gave me are more nightmare than fairyland. Perhaps they’re just a bit too vintage, or too rustic or perhaps french people hate their children. I don’t know. Whatever the reason these sheets, while being a seamstresses dream – heavy and high quality – they are super rough. I wouldn’t want to sleep in them let alone make a child sleep in them.

That said they are perfect for window covering.

I washed and ironed the sheet to make the stamped shapes as “clean” as possible. Then I froze. I was so scared of making a mistake that I couldn’t bear starting the stamping. A quick pep talk from Chris and my big sis and some advice from Dali- have no fear of perfection, you’ll never reach it! Got me over my many barriers.
I measured

I stamped

And stamped

And stamped a few teatowel sized sheets for luck

And dried overnight spread all over the flat

Then … I covered with a plain sheet and ironed.

Now. I have to say, this was the grump inducing bit. To “fix” the fabric paint and prevent it washing off you have to iron it on a hot setting for 1-2 minutes. Although i do hate ironing this sounded well easy and I saw myself getting through it in about 20mitutes tops.  On reflection I got a bit nervy.

First I had a large area to cover with about 50+ cats on it. Did I have to iron each cat for 2 minutes? That’s like 2hours of ironing. !?!

Second what if I burn a cat. Surely I can’t just hold the iron down on one spot for 2 minutes. That’s the behaviour that fire safety “scare your kids in the 80s” ads are made of.

Third, If I move the iron do I have to increase the time spent on an area to make up for the time the iron spends not covering each bit.

Fourth, what is very hot? I want figures. As in very hot 40 degrees? 100 degees? 3000 degrees!?!?

I guess hotter = better fix and longer with iron on one area = hotter. But hotter and longer both increase risk of roast cat which = rubbish blind and much sorrow.

I’m basically a recovering scientist. I’m used to precise instructions such as iron at hottest setting for 1minute × the area to be covered measured in cms or something like that.

Instead I came up with my own psueudoscientific rules and decided I would iron two cats at a time for 2 minutes total.

I even used my work mobile to time 2 minute intervals (something I consistently fail to do every circuit class I run)

I hoped that if I didn’t manage to fix the dye properly at least the effect would be the same accross the whole blind.

Now, anyone with basic mathematics and minimal interest in the topic has probably worked out something that took me about 20 cats and 21 minutes to clock. I was facing a good hour of sodding ironing in tiny 2 minute patches constantly freaking out that I was singeing a cat or letting the cloth temperature drop below an unspecified “hot heat”.

That did not go down in history as the most relaxing evening entertainment. Let me tell you.

Finally I washed the fabric again and then hung it up to dry.

This is the point that I got so excited I had to take a little break. A week and a half later I’m still waiting for the final push to get this blind well and truly off the pinterest grave yard.

Unfortunately I’m aware that the next job in the blind making instructions is to iron the fabric again!  Gah!


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