Monday, 28 January 2013

Some words, and quite a few pictures...

A belated Happy New Year to one and all. It has been a rather busy time of a late, and yet again this poor little place of ramblings has been neglected. SO, a quick recap is in order (with minimal faffing, else i'd be here all day, and you would be forced into taking a little nap) I will be brief!...

November bought about the start of my annual "Let The Christmas 
Panic-Making Commence". Starting with some cards and crocheted stockings for Zoe's shop.

The Love From Hetty and Dave Christmas window looking resplendant with festive cheer (including my stocking)

I went for laser-cut Christmas cards this year, rather than screen printed

Once the (inevitable) last minute rush to get things ready for the shop's Christmas late night opening was done, I could relax a little and continue with the baby blanket I was making for a friend. I've STILL not delivered it, but at least it's finished (I got a bit carried away with the soothing nature of the chevron stitch, so it's grown a little bigger than it needs to be)

ANOTHER baby was due at work, so a card was needed. I felt that a 
cut-work appliqué would be rather nice. A good excuse to get busy with my sewing machine for a few hours. Again, I got a little carried away with the amount of layers I was using, so cutting out all of the sections ended up rather tricksy and hand-breaking. But it was worth it I think.
 I was rather pleased with it

(Before the cutting commenced)

(Finally complete!)

The start of December bought about a rather exciting mini-adventure - To PARIS! It was a trip for my sister's 'special' birthday (I know, all birthdays are special...)

I got a little bit 'Holga-Happy' on the days when the sun was shining, but am yet to process the films. Another thing to add to my endless lists that i seem to be writing at the moment. I will get them processed and scanned in soon hopefully. They're are generally pretty hit and miss, but that's the 
lovely thing about them really.

(Very pretty buildings indeed)

An evening at The Two Windmills cafe (famously used in the movie 'Amelie') was a must for us. It was Happy-Hour too. What a bonus!

The new year started with something of a blip. My back decided it wasn't going work very well for a couple of weeks. Most inconvenient indeed. Because of this, I spent rather a long time on the floor, looking at this...

(It could have been worse. It's quite a nice view really)
However, due to the WONDER of the internet, I also managed to spend a significant (and I really do mean SIGNIFICANT) amount of hours staring at these beautiful folk...

They, rather generously I thought, all popped round on an hourly basis to check that I was doing A'okay, and would I like something strong to drink. 
I had somehow managed to miss seeing any episodes of Mad Men until this period of convalescence. I have absolutely no idea how this happened, and I also had no idea of quite how much of it I had missed! (It started in 2007! Where on earth has THAT time gone?) I absolutely love it, and am having to restrain myself to watching any more at the moment. I think it definitely prevented me from going totally la-la. What with the combination of pain, frustration and absolute 
cabin-fever, the MANY hours passed slightly quicker (It also made me want to drink Whiskey. Fortunately, I hate the stuff) 
Strangely enough, David Bowie also decided to bring me some cheer, in the form of his first new material in 10 years. What a jolly kind bloke. He knew it would cheer me up. 

The next exciting instalment of 2013 was that it SNOWED. Now, I am well aware that this is really not very exciting for some. However, I love the snow, and we very rarely end up with any at all in sunny old Bournemouth. I was very happy indeed. 

I was back from my Mad Men-watching convalescence by this point. This was my view from by my desk at work. Not bad at all I thought.

So there you have it. A little catch up. There are some potentially exciting things coming up in the next few weeks, and some other bits and bobs that I feel deserve a few more words. But those are for another day. I have given myself a thorough telling off for being rather lapse, and have instructed myself that I will NOT get behind on such matters again. (Until the next time, obviously)

Toodle-oo for now

Sunday, 18 November 2012

This is just too lovely to not mention...

Well well well, I hear you exclaim! (I actually don't, but stay with me...) Yes, I know, I am like a bus (again, stay with me...) Nothing for weeks and weeks, then suddenly TWICE IN AS MANY DAYS!

You see, what happened is, I just saw Stupid, Crazy, Love. (Don't you just love Steve Carell in absolutely everything he does?) Anyway, I realised that I have always liked the song that is played in the end credits, and never really knew who it was by. It turns out the song is Blood by The Middle East. It's something to do with the ending i think. It reminds me a bit of Edward Sharpe And The Magnetic Zeros... ANYWAY, I thought i'd have a peek on You Tube, and look at the absolute delight that is the video to it.
(Again, stay with me... This may not work as I have never embedded a video here before. Here goes...)

I hope that works. What do you think? Lovely, eh?

Friday, 16 November 2012

I know, I know...

I know... It has been an age. Again. Sorry... again!

Anyway, it's only a quickie. I have much more to follow, but most importantly i wanted to point out (in case any of you have not noticed...)

It's only ruddy well CHRISTMAS MAKINGS TIME!

For those of you who don't know me, I find this very exciting indeed. It inevitably turns into a manic rush to try and finish the impossible amounts of makings I impose on myself, but I love it none the less. I try to whittle it down every year, but every year i get a little carried away.

My makings are actually a little late in starting this year, so I need to get a wriggle on - Starting with these little beauties...

They are a little time consuming, but I love them. They are rather Scandinavian looking and are just crying out for a satsuma and a lump of coal or two. I shall be making some over this weekend as it is time for the annual festivities in Pokesdown.
Zoe at Love From Hetty and Dave will be providing some mince pies and general festive loveliness this coming Thursday, along with other local handmade and vintage folk in Pokesdown's vintage quarter (More info HERE)

Along with these little lovelies, I have a stack of things that i haven't made yet from the last few months of Mollie Makes magazine. It feels a little self indulgent to make them all for myself, so I shall inflict them on my friends and family instead!

Another thing I shall come back later and ramble about is the fabulous Pip Lincolne at Meet Me At Mikes. We all know that Pip is one super dooooper lady who is EXTREMELY generous with her time and thoughts, but recently she got even MORE generous. Via JustB magazine, Pip has been running a most marvelous Blog School over the last few weeks, with hints and tips on improving your blog and getting the best out of it. I have been scribbling notes a'plenty since. More on this later...

Anyway, that's it for now. I had a tooth out this afternoon, and I am beginning to feel a little ropey now that my face has defrosted!

Have a terrific weekend, folks


Tuesday, 7 August 2012

Better (very) late than never - Part 1...

Oh, goodness me. I seem to have done it again. Is there some kind of blogging confessional? It's been a wee while since my last blog... However, this has been due to being ever so busy indeed with exciting things and much makery, so I am excusing myself. I figure these things are better late than never, so I shall start with the most exciting of things.
The first weekend of the merry month of July was a most busy and splendid affair full of, well, gin, excitement, and crafting.
The 30th June was the big day for our friends Sara and Mark. They were wed in a church in the forest and were swept away in a marvelous campervan to their reception - A woodland wonder replete with shepherds huts, a fire pit, a most ingenious cake and gin. Lots and lots of gin.
A wonderful day was had by all (a little TOO wonderful for some. The gin had run dry by midnight)

There was even a little spot of crochet and cats cradle on the steps of the bridal hut! (Photo by the fantastic Big Bouquet. Those guys do amazing things, so if you're to be wed, call them up quick!)

So, the second part of this momentous weekend began at 5am the next morning. My poor bleary self, and very kind (and considerably less bleary) allocated (and very long suffering) 'driver' tippy-toed from the cosy confines of the beautiful bell tent where our friends were still snoozing, and armed with a wrapped pain au chocolat in each shoe, kindly bestowed to us by the lovely mother of the bride, we set off on our 4 hour journey 'oop North. We were off to the incredible studio of Louise at Hope and Elvis for the long awaited 'Crafty Day' with Tif and Rachelle, aka Dottie Angel and Ted and Agnes.

I had hugged myself with glee when a few months back i managed to be one of the fortunate few to secure my place on this, most auspicious of occasions. A rare trip made by Tif to Old Blighty, for a meeting of crafty souls with her dear book writing buddy Rachelle - with a weekend flyby at Louise's studio for two one-day workshops.

I was still a little bleary on arrival, and a little apprehensive too. You never quite know what to expect on occasions such as this. Tif and Rachelle are somewhat "crafty heroes" of mine and i was concerned that my slightly dishevelled self would not be able to be as crafty as i'd like in the presence of such legends.
It turned out (as it so often does) that my worries were unfounded. Tif, Rachelle and Louise led us into a day of such fabulous-ness that my bleary-ness evaporated (okay, aided by many cups of tea and THE most delicious lunch provided by Louise and the lovely Debs)

The studio was an absolute delight, filled to bursting with everything a crafty soul could ever wish for

There was a LOT of chatting, thinking and designing and also a spot of cooing, all with the satisfying soundtrack of many happy humming sewing machines in the background (one sounded a little bit more like a tractor, but still a hum none the less)

We beavered away all day on producing pinnies, and for those less weary than I, a whatnot garland too. 
I only had a few sewing mishaps - One due to Tif's insistence on needing the machine I was using (bully!) but both her and Rachelle very kindly fixed my mistake themselves, which meant that my pinny would be finished by the end of the day, and would be worn in our end of workshop 'Dearie lineup', for which I was very grateful indeed. I was teetering on the edge of class dunce by this point (blamed almost entirely on that pesky gin)

It really was a marvelous day - So lovely to be surrounded by so many crafty souls, all joined by our appreciation of Tif and Rachelle's fabulousness and the love of a vintage doily or two.

I cannot recommend a visit to Louise's studio enough. She holds many varied workshops. In fact, not long before our Dearie Weekend, the amazing Julie Arkell held a workshop there. Incredible. If only Louise would up sticks and shift her lovely world to be nearer Dorset...

Tif and Rachelle's book "Granny Chic: Crafty Recipes and Inspiration For The Handmade Home" is available to pre-order on Amazon and will be available from the 25th October this year. This is VERY exciting indeed, and I for one cannot wait for its arrival.

I came away with, not only a rather dashing new pinny, but also a new found respect for the wonder of bees (although i remain a little wary), and several new crafty blogs to peruse...

Toodle-pip for now... 

Friday, 11 May 2012

Happy 1st Birthday...

As a special (and utterly selfless) act, I have taken the birthday edition of Mollie Makes on a wee pootle to the seafront for a cider (Totally selfless, see?)
Happy birthday to the most splendid craft magazine around. It really is super dooper.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

A triple double - take...

Greetings! So, I got back from Wales last week. A fabulous week was had by all, and as the weather wasn't too peachy (I'd secretly planned it that way), i was rather productive too. I managed to finish off my little aprons, and a cushion with granny squares on one side, and (slightly circus-like) red striped fabric on the other.

(We may have got a little carried away with snapping these little beauties. MANY photos were taken.
 I blame where we stay in Wales for being far too pretty to resist.)

I would normally crochet the backs of my cushions in cream, or make the back the same as the front, but i thought i'd use the great fabric i'd bought in Machynlleth as a backing instead. It was a bit tricksy to sew, but worth it i think...

SO, I got home, and was rather excited to find issue 13 of Mollie Makes on my doormat, where it had patiently waited for almost a week. I must say... I did SEVERAL double takes on reading it, and wondered at first if maybe i was just a little over-tired from my long car journey home...

My first double take was the tutorial of Ilaria Chiaratti's crocheted cushion...
Even some of the colour combinations are the same!
 So, once i'd finished with that double take, i moved swiftly onto my second - This was the 'Ooh, I Could Do That' section which was Kerry Morgan's mason jars...

Again - rather similar i'd say...

Now, the final double take wasn't such an obvious one, but it amused me none the less...
I handmade my bouquet for my wedding back in August. I was originally going to use collected brooches as well as buttons, but it was going to be rather expensive that way. Instead i went for paper flowers, with buttons as the centre...
So, there you have it. My triple double take! Spooky, eh? 
Hopefully, the aprons and new cushion will be in Zoe's fabulous Love From Hetty and Dave shop in Pokesdown soon.
I also have some lovely commissions on the go at the moment, along with some other bits and bobs so i shall be back with more shortly

Cheerio for now

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Farewell holiday...

Well, the end is nigh. The aprons are finished, the cushion sewn up and a machine embroidered tree is in progress. The holiday is pretty much done. We are just enjoying a final coffee at the lovely Parliament House cafe in Dolgellau before setting off for home.