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'Butterflies' by Vera Duncan of Saltburn District U3A

'Butterflies' by Vera Duncan of Saltburn District U3A

I have always liked butterflies and decided to try doing a butterfly "Banksy" on my back wall. I live in a town house near the sea front and only have a back yard with plants and a small bistro table and chairs. Over these lock down weeks I decided to draw round a cut out and have enjoyed painting them plus they have given me a lot of pleasure from inside and out. Thankfully they have also weathered the rain this week and I intend to keep adding some more for my friends to enjoy when they decide to come and sit outside for coffee/tea and my delicious scones; don't all rush maximum three at a time.

'Jewellery' by Julia Kujawinska of Hucknall & District U3A

'Jewellery' by Julia Kujawinska of Hucknall & District U3A

New interest recently taken up during lockdown. Jewellery supplies mostly from eBay who have a wide range at reasonable prices. Plenty of Youtube tutorials although you can just use your own imagination.

'Powerpoint' by Sunjai Gupta of Norwood U3A

'Powerpoint' by Sunjai Gupta of Norwood U3A

This was a powerpoint diagram I made during lockdown. Please note that a modified version of it also figures as part of the online Waterloo Festival

'Breeze Block Sculpture' by Kevin Daniels of Woodspring U3A

'Breeze Block Sculpture' by Kevin Daniels of Woodspring U3A

I made this sculpture from a breeze block given to me by brother as something of a joke birthday present 12 years ago. I realised that if I did not carve it now it would never happen. The consistency of the material surprised me. It was rather like a cross between balsa wood and Parmesan cheese. An old poor quality wood chisel did the job by gently tapping with a hammer and paring away the block. The image was adapted from a carved block set into a wall in Naples that I photographed 10 years ago. I have only done a little carving in stone and wood but this was by far the easiest material to work with. The block costs £5 from a builders merchants. Why not have a go at carving a Thermalite breeze block yourself?

'Crochet Blanket' by Wendy Barker of Hinckley U3A

'Crochet Blanket' by Wendy Barker of Hinckley U3A

This crochet blanket has finally been finished after probably 2 years as I can’t remember when I bought the wool to make it! It looks nice on the sofa at the moment but will, at last, be ready to snuggle up in during the winter. The eagle-eyed amongst you will spot some mistakes but no ones perfect! The pattern is available for free download from Stylecraft https://www.stylecraft-yarns.co.uk/Ross+Blanket/0_CAFA122_CAFA150_CAFA161.htm

'NHS Hero' by Mary Pearce of Barnet U3A

'NHS Hero' by Mary Pearce of Barnet U3A

I am an avid crocheter but could also be called a Happy Hooker! I saw this on Pinterest and eventually found the pattern on the Internet. 

'Doorstops' by Judith Brun of Saltburn District U3A

'Doorstops' by Judith Brun of Saltburn District U3A

I decided on a project of making doorstops and lockdown has given me more than enough time to tackle these. Three of the designs have been made by upcycling some milk cartons which was a recent challenge by our local U3A.

'Felt Dolls' by Anne	Allery of Beeston U3A

'Felt Dolls' by Anne Allery of Beeston U3A

I made these small (about 4 inches high) felt dolls to go in Literacy Volunteer Story Sacks for use when children go back to school. I made my own patterns and used scraps of felt, sequins and knitting wool. Because I only had brown felt in the beginning, I made several Gingerbread men but after an appeal to friends, I was given lots of different coloured felt. The other characters are Rapunzel, Goldilocks, a princess and Jack of beanstalk fame.

'Cushion Cover' by Mamie Munro of Penicuik & District U3A

'Cushion Cover' by Mamie Munro of Penicuik & District U3A

One of my hobbies is silk painting and over the years I must have made a few hundred scarves, pictures etc. I could not bring myself to throw out any of the scraps left from each project and as a consequence, I now have bags of beautiful, brightly coloured silk pieces that I was always meaning to make into something. By doing crazy patchwork with some I have managed to make this cushion cover. As the silk is very thin and stretches a lot it is important to first use very fine, iron-on vilene to back each piece before cutting out randomly shaped pieces. These are then pinned overlapping on to a firm piece of fabric cut to your cushion size. Finally, each piece is machine stitched on using a narrow zig-zag stitch. The cover was completed using up some fabric from my store for the back.

'Bag' by Valerie McCarthy of Barnet U3A

'Bag' by Valerie McCarthy of Barnet U3A

As a passionate stitcher (the word ' sewer' never looks as good in print!), lockdown provided an opportunity to enjoy many hours at my sewing machine. I joined a local hub of volunteers making masks, bags and scrubs. I also started to use up some of the fabric stash I have acquired over time making bags and hope, when things go back to normal, that some of the projects my wonderful U3A Sewing Group have made, can be sold for charity. Modern technology means that access to so many helpful videos is easy, so you don't have to be an expert to find something you could make, and it keeps both mind and fingers active.