Monthly Archives: August 2012

I’m back!

Standard

Hello! How are you? Have you enjoyed the summer (or at least survived all the rain)?

You may have wondered where I’ve been the last few weeks. In actual fact I haven’t been anywhere. Apart from my week camping (in the rain) my holiday has been spent at home (in the rain with brief moments of sun). I had so many creative ideas buzzing around in my head and the holidays persented the perfect opportunity to start making them.

But when it came to it, I didn’t really feel like making anything at all. I had so much time on my hands and not an ounce of inspiration. So instead I spent my time with friends, taking trips to the beach and reading.

How cute are these beach huts?!

And even though these were lovely things to do I thought you’d probably get pretty bored reading about it all, so I decided to have a little blogging break. Every now and then I found myself writing a blog in my head (does anyone else do that, or is it just me?!) but on the whole I’ve enjoyed the break.

But I’m also really happy to be back! Although, with the new term just around the corner I don’t know how often I’ll be able to post – we’ll have to see how things go.

Anyway, I’m rambling. Let me quickly show you the very little I’ve made over the last couple of weeks.

A friend wanted a baby blanket, and asked if I had any. I had 3 which were part way through, so she came and picked her favourite.

I managed to finish it fairly quickly (I only had a few rounds left to do) and edged it with Jacquie’s Double V Edging.

The finished blanket measures 29iches/75cm.

The same friend has also commissioned me to make a blanket for her Nan for Christmas. More of that when I’ve made some progress!

I went to a wedding a couple of weeks ago. It was in a beautiful old village church and the hall where they held the reception was liberally festooned with bunting – I was in heaven!

They also had really lovely table decorations, my favourite being sweets in teacups. Such a simple idea, but just lovely.

I loved the favours too – beautifully decorated mini jars of jam. Yum!

The bride and groom asked for gift vouchers rather than presents, as they already had most things they needed. However, I decided that I wanted to give them something a little more personal. So I made them a cushion to celebrate their marriage.

I was really pleased with how it turned out – I hope they like it too!

Advertisements

Standard

Hi everyone! I know I’ve not been around much lately (more of that in another post) but I just wanted to bring this great giveaway to your attention! Some of you may have come across Rainbow Junkie before, but go and have a look if you’ve not popped by for a while. She has made some lovely goodies (including some completely amazing snowflakes) which she’s giving away. Really, go and have a look. Now!

Rainbow Junkie

Well I liked the alliteration and there are five free things for one of my now fifty plus followers.

Some people call them Giveaways (as I will) some Competitions, but this is something I have been preparing for, as those who have been following me longest will know.

So what are the conditions for entry?

It’s open to all my followers anywhere in the world.

So if you are one of my followers and you want to be entered for the giveaway all I ask is that you leave a comment at the bottom of this post asking to be entered and saying either

  • What you most enjoy about my posts.

or

  • What you would like to see more of.

And what is there to be given away?

Well I have made this egg-cosy in the form of a bobble hat. The bobble is maybe a little oversized but I…

View original post 253 more words

Marvelous magnets

Standard

A few days ago I was having a last little browse on facebook before I went to bed, when up popped a picture of some very pretty magnets.

Photo: Sets of three pretty floral fridge magnets are now half price for a limited time only :) http://www.notonthehighstreet.com/jennyarnott/product/floral-rose-fabric-fridge-magnets

Not only were they beautiful, they were also on sale! I couldn’t let this opportunity pass, and snapped up 2 sets. I was delighted when they arrived only a couple of days later, all beautifully wrapped in blue tissue paper.

And here they are! (There is just one packet in this picture because I’d already ripped the other one open!)

They’re so pretty! My original plan was to use them on my whiteboard at school, but seeing the grubby state of the current magnets I’m starting to have second thoughts.

I love the little cards that they’re attached to – even the backs are pretty 🙂

And they came with a lovely card too.

Jenny, thank you so much for my pretty magnets! If you’ve not come across Jenny’s work before, pop over to her website or find her on facebook. It’s well worth a look!

New scarf

Standard

My belief is that you can never have too many scarves. You never know when you might need one (even in the middle of the summer if you live in Britain) and it’s important to have as many colours and styles as possible. Right?

Or is it just me?

Anyway, at New Wine last week I was merrily browsing round the market place, when a whole host of scarves just jumped out at me. And one in particular caught my eye.

So pretty! And (nearly) the same colour pink as my handbag. The downside – it was just before payday and I couldn’t afford it. I was sure it would be snapped up, but when I went back a few days later it was still there! So of course I bought it before anyone else could get their hands on it.

Now, it cost me more than I would usually pay for a scarf. But it was well worth it. Firstly because it’s been handmade – just look at the tiny stitches quilting 3 layers together. And they’re all so neat! I don’t think I could make all my stitches so similar in size. How many hours must this have taken?!

Secondly it was worth it because it’s recycled. Each scarf was made from an old sari. Presumably one which was too full of holes to be worn any more (I’m guessing this from the small patches in random places) and would otherwise have been thrown away.

Thirdly it was worth it because each scarf tells a story. The women in India who make them have been rescued from human trafficking. From what I understand, Sari Bari was set up to help these women to build a new life for themselves. Each scarf (and all their other products) has a label with the name of the woman who made it.

So not only was I getting a beautiful new scarf, I was helping Uma to build a new life for herself. This is by far the best scarf that I have ever bought!

Find out more about Sari Bari here, or have a look at some of their beautiful products on their UK website here, or their US website here.

My week

Standard

This week has felt fairly uncreative. I’ve done absolutely no baking, crocheting, knitting or sewing for fun. However, I have had a fairly productive week.

I have spent some time in school, just pottering around, sorting out and mending.

This was the state of my chair. I’m planning to cover it with a big crochet blanket, but thought it’d be a good idea to try to stop it falling apart any more than it already was. I had thankfully remembered to take needles and thread with me to school, then raided the class fabric box.

Ok, so it’s not the neatest sewing I’ve ever done, but it’s functional and will hopefully stop the stuffing coming out.

I’ve also spent a couple of days planning, and finally feel like I’m getting somewhere. This picture sums up how it’s felt though – surrounded with paperwork on all sides with only coffee to help me through it!

But I haven’t spent all week working. It’s Mum’s birthday tomorrow, so we went out for an early celebration with Granny yesterday. We went to Otter Nurseries where we had a lovely lunch…

…and a yummy milkshake…

…then had a great time wandering round their shop. For a garden centre they sure have a lot of craft material! This is what I came home with…

The 2 board books were a complete bargain in the sale, and I just love these 50s inspired papers! They are part of the Papermania Happy Days range. These are some of my favourites…

Hope you have all had a lovely week 🙂

Holiday snaps

Standard

I’m back! I had a fantastic week away (even the rain and mud didn’t spoil the fun) but was pretty happy to sleep in a real bed again on Saturday 🙂 Here’s just a little of what we got up to…

We experienced a whole range of weather conditions, often having sun and rain within a space of a few minutes.

Some of the rain showers were truly spectacular.

They only lasted a few minutes, but were incredibly powerful.

Rain that powerful is always fun when you’re living in a tent! Thankfully the part we were in didn’t get flooded, but some people did. During one particularly heavy (and long) rain storm, I had all the kids huddled around me in our dining tent (a very flimsy marquee that looked like it would fly away many times during the week, but miraculously stayed put) for story time. These kids have always enjoyed my made up stories, but I found that they were getting a bit repetitive. So last year I came up with a solution – story cards! The children pick cards at random to give a place, characters and a problem.

They got a little soggy, as the rain started dripping through the roof, but the rain couldn’t dampen our fun. The kids just loved being part of the creative process of storytelling, and came up with some great additions.

Anyway, the result of so much rain (and the fact that I still wore flip flops for most of the week) meant that I had pretty muddy feet!

On some nights the clouds cleared and we got some beautiful views of the moon. The picture really doesn’t do it justice – it was just so incredibly bright and beautiful.

In a few quiet moments I managed to attach a few more squares to my blanket. But those quiet moments didn’t usually last long before I was surrounded by children.

The oldest girl of the group was desperate to learn to crochet, so one afternoon I gave her a lesson in working a chain. She found it really tricky to hold the yarn as well as move the hook, so I ended up holding the yarn for her.

She managed to make a great long chain which she turned into a bracelet.

In other brief moments of quiet I enjoyed cuddles with my friend’s 6 week old daughter and a little reading.

We also celebrated a birthday with some yummy chocolate cake. We had so much cake – everyone had been busy baking and I think most of us ended up bringing some home again!

We had great weather as we were packing up at the end of the week – just right for getting the tents dried out and packed up.

There was also a bit of drama on our last day – a family near us were pulling up tent pegs when water started gushing up. It turned out that their tent peg had been in a water pipe all week long, and pulling it out resulted in a bit of a flood! So there was all sorts of excitement watching engineers come along to dig it up and repair it.

All in all it was a brilliant week. But now real life has kicked in again and I still have another couple of loads of washing to do.

Cheesy bites

Standard

As well as making a mountain of cookies to take camping, I also whipped up some cheesy bites.

I found the original recipe over at mumsnet, but changed it a bit as I went along. For example, I didn’t have any cayenne, so I added a good sprinkling of ground black pepper and a teaspoon of English mustard powder for extra flavour. I also used mature cheddar, as that was what I had in the fridge!

The only other change I made was the shape – instead of cutting the pastry up into straws, I used cookie cutters to cut out mini stars and hearts.

I loved this recipe for the fact that it’s really quick and simple to make, and the results are just delicious. They’re really not good for you (as they are packed with butter and cheese) but that’s what makes them so completely yummy!