Posts Tagged ‘Coccinellidae’

Not sure exactly what I’ve ben up to since I last updated – I started an exercise blog, which predictably, lasted about a week before I had a major wobbler.

I’ve been training away from home, so not had time to do anything, and boy does it show.

I can’t tell you how annoyed I am by the weeds at the allotment – who knew plants could grow so much in 2 weeks? Saving grace is the tomatoes are looking fantastic, as are the spuds. I managed to cut down some chest high thistles, in order to give the carrots some light too….

I have now decided to go on the all out offensive. I’m going to buy a load of Glyphosate and black sheeting. Gonna spray the weeds that have beds of their own, cover with sheeting and bricks and leave. There’s not much else I’ll be sowing this year, and if I do, I have space in the sweetcorn bed as only 4 plants came up *sad face*

Meanwhile, on Ladybird Watch, I note that there are very few about this year, after seeing thousands in Spring…I saw one on the allotment today, that’s it…..haven’t even seen a Harlequin yet this year, except for the one I saw in Germany….

On the sewing front, I finally finished ‘The Horror of Satin MkII’, aka New Look 6002, and this time I went for eye searing magenta. I learned my lesson though, I made a toile of the bodice, and when I cut the pattern, I made sure I took a wedge out of the bodice front and each centre back seam. I even lined it. It wasn’t really difficult but it was really slippery polyester silk and the satin was also slippery….

Wore it to a friend’s wedding yesterday, and it was reasonably comfy, if a little tight at the back of the arms…and the hook and eye at the top of the zip itched. I attempted a lapped zipper because I didn’t have a concealed one, and it looks OK, but Bob tells me my zip is slightly off centre. Meh, I can’t see it….. 😀

I look grumpy as hell in the pic, but that’s because I was caught off guard – I said ‘take a pic’ and he didn’t even give me chance to smile! I like the dress, may well wear it to another wedding..as it happens the wedding was awesome, and between the meal and the reception, we got to play lawn bowls, croquet and wander round the lake, we also found a stable with a horse and a really small donkey in, so we petted them too….

I don’t normally look this miserable, honest!

Well actually you can’t, cos I’ve taken no pictures..BUT…

Perusing the local charity shop this afternoon, I find they have a bit of fabric in (they hide it amongst the bedlinen, curtains etc)….so today, for the grand total of £8.97, I managed to bag myself;

A scrap of really nice teal fabric. I say scrap, it’s 24″ x 70″ – I’ll probably get a small top out of it….it’s sort of crepey but has no stretch….

2 metres of slightly stretch black stuff with a stripe which is perfect for making a shirt or light dress for work. Not too drapey but comfy…would need lining if I made a skirt….

Almost 6(!!!) metres of burgundy suit/trouser fabric with a little stretch.  Debating whether to make Vogue 1265 out of this, seeing as I’ve ordered it and all.

Have just joined http://www.sewdirect.com – get the magazine for £30 a year, plus 2 free patterns, and every other pattern I buy is half price – saves waiting for the Vogue sale at the fabric shop 😀

http://www.sewdirect.com/acatalog/Vogue_-_1265.html

http://www.sewdirect.com/acatalog/Vogue___1290.html

So they are the patterns I bought, or rather, didn’t…….

I also got ‘goal’ trousers, which are just too tight to fasten up. My goal is to get into them (comfortably) by end of July.

If the rain holds off, I’m going to the allotment later.

 

Oh and in Debenhams earlier – Henry Holland top – I LOVE his tights but I need this top, yes I do, I don’t even care that it’s white….

http://www.debenhams.com/webapp/wcs/stores/servlet/prod_10001_10001_037010600780_-1?breadcrumb=Home~Women

 

 

 

What have I been up to? Not a lot. Failing to make stuff properly, tidying up and packing for Whitby, that’s about it!

Will be taking some creations with me, have to practice for MMM’12!

Will also be visiting Boyes and the fabric shop

Much walking and stuff to be done, lots of fry ups to eat, and drink to er drink 😀

Have tidied up the sewing room so it looks lovely, repotted the triffids and packed.

Packing, it occurs to me I have loads of skirts, and no tops. Unless you count baggy old band t shirts. This must be rectified….I can’t make tops for shit. Even I can’t have a wardrobe FULL of Taffies :p

I am now knackered and am going to veg in front of the telly with either tea or JD, depending on if there’s milk in the fridge…..

Also forgot to mention on Ladybird Watch last weekend, at the allotment, as well as loads of seven spots, I also saw over half a dozen Adonis Ladybirds – this makes me very happy. Still no filthy foreign ones yet this year….. 😀

http://www.naturespot.org.uk/species/adonis-ladybird

Whitby - Whalebone Arch and View

Whitby - Whalebone Arch and View (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Spring/Summer palette

So…..somewhere on the left is a little colour wheel tag thingummy telling you I’ve signed up for another dressmaking challenge. Well, why not? I was umming and ahhing about the colour theme for this – ie I love red and don’t have enough of it in my wardrobe, I’m also getting a hankering after something in lemon yellow and lime green (think Twister lolly), but in the end, I went for the above. Why?

Well, they are my other favourite colours, but also colours I don’t wear enough of (the teal shades, for example – I LOVE greeny aqua colours but rarely wear them, so I shall be making an effort this year), or paler, brighter shades of colours I do wear – the light aqua is a bit out of my comfort zone…. 😀

Let me clarify, I am a goth, though I love very bright colours – mainly red, green and magenta. I even believe I suit them….but I still go for black cos I am lazeh…I must stop with the black!

The stuff on my board – the colou and shape of the mermaid dress is AMAZING, I would love to make one, one day. The Vibrams – I do sporty stuff, and I need to make sporty clothes – I will be making shorts this summer, that is definitely one of the things I’ll be making….the corset. I’ve made one corset, and I’d like to make another before the end of summer. I also really like the colour…

I love the shape of the green dress, the colours on the floaty dress, and everyone should have green glittery shoes…the flamingo top is due to my love of ridiculous fabrics, and I love ladybirds, hence the necklace. The grey jacket reflects workwear (I have no smart workwear) and the fact I often think grey looks smarter than black, and it goes with my chosen ‘brights’

My plan for this challenge is to make – 1 dress suitable for a wedding (I have little choice in this), 1 pair of shorts (possibly Iris), 1 go-anywhere summer dress, 2 tops/blouses suitable for pretty much anything, and if I have time, maybe a skirt. That isn’t black. I will actually be making 2 dresses suitable for weddings but one is way off the scope of this challenge 😀 Oh, and I have my netty petty to finish, which is definitely the right colour for this!

For now though, I need to get ready for a wedding, my dress has a wonky hem, but clearly it’s a design feature…. 😀

Had a bit of an odd day today. I failed to get to the bout, which was annoying, as I was really looking forward to it. Sadly, eating large quantities of liquorice and grapes the day before was NOT a good plan! 😀

Instead, I went to visit a couple of lovely friends, one of whom fixed my green glass eye pendant (not as weird as it sounds – a dear friend made it for me, you can get one here http://www.etsy.com/shop/M1dnightDreary )

Same friend had also made me a rather lovely ladybird pendant. Yes, I am obsessed…you can view the rather stunning things she makes here http://www.facebook.com/pages/Urchindian/288403001170071

I then went to the allotment and put in the frame for my pea netting. Didn’t plant the peas as there’s risk of frost in next couple of days…didn’t put the actual net up either as I have visions of birds flying into it and getting trapped (had 2 drown in the water butts last year 😦 )

Back home, feeling a bit better and I decided to make the jacket from New Look 6947. I’ve made the trousers, they were a little big, but fit well (eventually) The jacket will have no sleeves and actually be a waistcoat, and I’m making it from the fabric left over from the Meringue. I had just over a metre, the pattern calls for at least a metre and a half, but having no sleeves, thought it would be fine….. 3 HOURS of pissing around later, I’ve got all the pieces to fit, but I’ll be buggered if I can be bothered to cut them out tonight!

Just as I pin the last piece on, I FINALLY find the piece that tells me the finished garment measurements….I should have known…..WTF do I need 6 and a half inches of ease in the bust for? WHY??? Gah.

I am now off for a cup of tea, some quality chill out time and a bath.

Just because

1. Harmonia Axyridis – aka ‘funny looking foreign ladybird with too many spots’ hiding in a leaf

2. Yuki, being a tart

3. 14 spot ladybird, chilling out on some mint

4. 2 spot ladybird, having a good munch on some blackfly

5. The Commer, very ably guarded by BC

6. Angel, looking like one. She isn’t.

 

Have been a bit slack of late, but the week seems to have been spent ranting about ladybirds.

Last week, I went to the allotment to finally plant out the tomatoes and some flowers, and do yet more weeding.

I was really pleased to see a yellow ladybird on the mint – have only ever seen one on the allotment before – they were really common when I was a kid, though I think they are more prevalent in the Midlands….

I was about to dig up the nasty broad beans when I noticed some other ladybirds on there – was especially happy to see 3 2-spot ladybirds on there, and another on a different plant, as I’ve seen none at all on the allotment – and have only ever seen one in the flat….still no sign of the filthy foreign fat ginger immigrant scum ladybirds, which is odd, as they’re pretty much the only ones I see at home, and I only live a mile from the allotment….

Also saw some Adonis ladybirds – I’d wondered what the small, skinny 7-spots were, and now I know… had got bored of the aphid infestation on my rocket and pak choi so dug it all up and will resow at some point. For now, I put more French beans on there…

Couple of days later, went back to the allotment. My cleared bed count extends to the flower bed, fruit patch, the bit between the spuds and jungle, the bit where the infested brassicas were, and the bit where the peas would have been , if they’d not been eaten. Caught something out of the corner of my eye as I was doing so, and spotted the ladybird on a weed next to the broad bean plant……bloody Harmonia Axyridis..nothing harmonious about the little bastards grrr….gutted – was so happy about having at least 4 species of native ladybird on the patch (7 and 2 spot, 14 spot yellow and suspected Adonis ladybird) and then one of these greedy little feckers turns up…..and now I hear they’re interbreeding so will be more difficult to distinguish….meh, something about this one isn’t right either – it’s head looks all wrong, and it’s legs are black.
With any luck, it’s some weird variant of an eyed ladybird or something, we shall see – I’ve sent the pic to the survey, they can depress me more lol

Here’s the monster anyway, I’m no entomologist, but if anyone is, feel free to tell me to stop talking bollocks

Bimbled down to the allotment again on Tuesday, to spray a bit of weedkiller on my dock and creeping grassy stuff colony. Had a quick poke around the aphid infestations to see if I could spot some ladybirds. Spotted a couple of normal ones, and loads of larvae, all of which, thankfully are also not of the Harlequin persuasion (as far as I can tell)
Then I spied it. Hiding, in a leaf, like a coward. For such an evil aggressive predator, it’s not doing well. dunno if it was actually the same one as the other day, but they’re not that common in bright red. Tried to get it to move. It’s legs looked pale but the underside looked dark. Odd. And it was quite small for a foreigner…maybe it’s interbred…
Anyhow, it appeared to be injured – having great difficulty flying (after I so cruelly disturbed it to take a closer look) Either that or I woke it up…

Thursday afternoon, on the way home from work, was dive bombed by a ladybird. No, really. Looked at the front of my t-shirt, and it was one of THEM. It looked exactly like the one at the allotment, that is to say too bloody red, too many spots, too round and too dark legged. And also too small. I still swear they’ve been interbreeding. Tomorrow will be at the allotment again, I expect the larvae to be pupae by then…may even have a hatcher or two….

Have emailed the Harlequin Ladybird Survey chap to ask if they have indeed been interbreeding…..

There may be more news tomorrow lol….