April 24, 2015
A brace of Allusionists came out this month.
First: crossword setter John Feetenby explains how he goes about setting those infernal cryptic crossword clues. theallusionist.org/crosswords
Second: historian Kate Wiles reveals to me that the spaces between words are a relatively modern (and crucial) invention. theallusionist.org/spaces
April 6, 2015
Today, I had the ridiculous joy of appearing on Woman’s Hour‘s craft special. They asked me to teach Jane Garvey how to sew something on air; as the shops are presently full of diaphanous kimono-style bed-jackety garments, I decided we’d make our own, using three vintage square scarves from my ever-expanding collection (a few months ago I did try to count them, but stopped at 70).
I worship Jane Garvey, but ‘interest in craft’ is not one of her strong points. Watching her wield huge scissors and adopt the unconventional ‘Look, no hands!’ approach to machine sewing, I felt like a novice lion tamer on my first job.
Click here to hear the programme, and click the photo below to zoom in on the tutorial for making one of these very simple garments. I promise they are a lot more straightforward than we made them sound.
Here’s one I made earlier, flapping about in a high wind. There are French horns on the front, medieval men on horseback on the sleeves, and a massive striped Z on the back.