#8 Beastie

JonBeastie sporting a sporty sports shirt

Some time ago, the lovely Snail bought me my own beasties (from the wonderful Crawford Beastie maker Helen – she blogs here). To celebrate Wales winning the 6 Nations rugby, she commissioned the Beastie-maker to create a magnificent number 8 Wales rugby jersey for JonBeastie.

JonBeastie in a #8 Welsh Rugby Shirt
Was it something I eight?

How wonderful is that? Thank you Snail and thank you Crawcraft Beasties!

Day. Brightened. Up.


Categories: Artist, General silliness, Writing | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

ScrapHappy February 2019: A couple of repairs

This month’s ScrapHappy sees the return of that favourite* DIY project, Palletgate, and the feeding of birds using a piece of scrap found in the road.

Well, that doesn't look right...

Well, that doesn’t look right…

Palletgate is getting on a bit in Mr Snail DIY terms. Anything I create that lasts more than a week is considered ‘permanent’ and merits an entry in Wikipedia. Anything lasting a month is considered ‘a miracle’ and merits an e-mail to the Pope. Palletgate has been functional since 2014, making it, well, a complete fluke, and the only gate to have a restraining order issued on it by the Vatican.

It does receive somewhat of a battering from the Welsh weather, and it stands up pretty well I think, requiring only the occasional running repair. This time, it was the turn of the mechanism-that-keeps-the-latchy-thing-in-place to need a bit of TLC. The top runner, made from our willow hedge, had come loose and split. The block it was attached to (made from pallet) had also split a bit.

A new piece of willow and simply turning the block around has done the trick, at least for now:


As good as not-really-new-at-all

The other thing needing repair as a result of being hammered by the gale-force winds was one of the bird seed holders. Our bird feeder is based on our old re-purposed rotary clothes drier, so is already a resident of the ScrapHappy Universe.

The top of one of the seed holders was somewhat crushed when the whole feeding station was blown over. I replaced the broken ring with a cable tie I found in the road a couple of months ago (I have no idea why, but there were half a dozen used cable ties lying on the ground. I picked them up and undid them, ready for just such an occasion as this). The result is actually a better way of hanging the seed holder on the feeder, and hopefully happy birds!


Oh dear…


Inside – the cable tie is too big to slide through the hole








Hanging around with its mates



* Or loathsome. You decide.

These ScrapHappy posts are curated by Kate, who provides links to other (mostly sewing) ScrapHappy bloggers at Tall Tales from Chiconia on the fifteenth of every month. I have sneaked a non-fabric-based ScrapHappy in when no one was looking!

Categories: recycling, repair, ScrapHappy, Sustainable Stuff | Tags: , , | 7 Comments

ScrapHappy January 2019


My wallet – in a previous life, it was a…?

First, a Scrappy New Year to everyone – I hope 2019 sees you more ScrapHappy than you thought possible!

This month, my non-fabric-based (“soft scrapping”) offering (so-called “hard scrapping”) is: my wallet.

The moths were relocated especially for the occasion. Actually, they haven’t had a lot of time to settle in as this is a very new wallet, replacing my old one of 300 years. So, why am I mentioning my new wallet here?

Well, I was in a local shop (the Risc World Shop) to me in my other life in Reading (Chez Snail, where I rest my shell, is nowhere near there) that sells many excellent things made in faraway places by people trying to survive against some pretty tall odds. Hiding in these treasures, I discovered this wallet, made in Cambodia for the Lost in Samsara group. Have a look at what it is made of:


I know, inner tubes! Now that’s a cool piece of ScrapHappiness!


These ScrapHappy posts are curated by Kate, who provides links to other (mostly sewing) ScrapHappy bloggers at Tall Tales from Chiconia on the fifteenth of every month. I have sneaked a non-fabric-based ScrapHappy in when no one was looking!


Categories: recycling, ScrapHappy | Tags: , , | 5 Comments

ScrapHappy December 2018


No, we don’t plug the chickens in…

First, apologies for there being no ScrapHappy post from me in November, a month which seemed to just end before I had come to terms with it!

This is a very quick post with Chez Snail’s ScrapHappy solution to the issue of the broken chicken house door. Once upon a time, it was all one moulded piece of plastic, incorporating a lovely handle with which to pull the door open and closed. Then the handle snapped off, which came as a surprise given how sturdy it seemed.


…really, we don’t

The handle was replaced with an old bungee cord, which lasted two years or so before finally wearing through, hence the need for a new replacement.

Ever wondered what to do with those irritating European-style mains leads that come with electrical goods? Well, you could tape a couple together and they work really well as a chicken door opener/closer – provided you haven’t thrown them away already, and you wouldn’t do that, now would you?

Enjoy your particular brand of (Scrap) happy festive season, be that Christmas, Hanukkah, Solstice or Late December-based Gluttony, and I hope 2019 is a fab year for you all!


Categories: recycling, ScrapHappy, Sustainable Stuff | Tags: , | 5 Comments

ScrapHappy October 2018


One part of this box is fine – but this bit, well..

A long time ago, the world was young(ish) and Maplin still existed for all those essentials such as 741 operational amplifier chips and boxes of nails and screws. Over the years, I availed myself of both these retail opportunities, the latter lasting more years than I care to remember or indeed dwell on.

Over those years, as we all do, the box itself became battered and held together with sticky tape until one particularly rubbish day when not only was pretty much everything going wrong, but the tape gave out, covering the bottom of my makeshift box of tools and camera bits (I was attempting to install a nest box camera at Denmark Farm at the time) with the aforementioned nails and screws. They stayed at the bottom of that box for well over a year.

Last month, I decided to do what all good therapists eventually recommend and “get over it”. I collected all the loose bits and put them in a different, more intact, box. Then I came over all ScrapHappy and decided to try to repurpose this box as a, well, a box but this time for holding my Raspberry pi bits.

All I needed were new hinges and a way of building up the missing bits of lid onto which said hinges would be attached. the answer was obvious – some Sugru* which was a birthday present, and the old heating element from a defunct soldering iron. Obviously.


Any old iron? Well, a bit of one.


If it wasn’t broken before…

The iron heater is a metal tube in which there sits a now broken ceramic element. A quick hacksaw later and the tube could be removed and cut in half. Eh voilà! Two hinges.

Sugru was added to hold the metal in place and to replace the missing plastic.


ScrapHappied hinges


In theory, these bits of Sugru would hold the hinges in place. In practice, not so much.

And it was done! I waited a week for the Sugru to completely set and then tested it.

And it fell apart. The Sugru did not attach firmly to the plastic.

So now it is a box that I have used to hold a couple of ScrapHappy hinges and some (now) useless pieces of Sugru.

Back to the drawing board!!


Well, that didn’t work. At least the box is still, you know, a box.

These ScrapHappy posts are curated by Kate, who provides links to other (mostly sewing) ScrapHappy bloggers at Tall Tales from Chiconia on the fifteenth of every month. I have sneaked another non-fabric-based Scraphappy in when no one was looking!


* Sugru is mouldable glue. Honest.

Categories: recycling, repair, ScrapHappy, Sustainable Stuff | Tags: , | 12 Comments

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