Saturday, December 31, 2016

Right..... we go then.  Last day of 2016, another turn along the road.  Tomorrow see the start of
1 Year of Stitches challenge, I mentioned in the last post. I want to make something vivid. not my usual muted palette.
We shall see.

Here is a sneak peak of something I have been working on over the holidays.

And here is my wish for you all.

Friday, December 23, 2016

Happy Christmas......

....a bit of general silliness for you.  I couldn't resist.   The kind gentleman who took the photograph for me said "I don't wish to be rude but you are the oldest person I've seen doing this"........little does he know.

Friday, December 16, 2016


this is one of those times when you don't have time for anything other than Christmas preparations. So you pop into the internet for a little R&R and what happens you find a couple of things that you want to start right now.

How about this one......

"One Year of Stitches" filling a hoop with a year's worth of stitches.

Seems doable. We shall see. Here is the link if you want to play along.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

I aren't dead......... the message from Granny Weatherwax said. 

I have though been very, very lazy about blogging.  One reason, the blogging community has changed, posting on Facebook requires less time and effort. Many people have, like me, just stopped posting. So the daily habit of reading up favourite blogs has fallen by the wayside. 

Another reason is blogging used to be all about sharing ideas, now it seems sharing an idea has to be a commercial venture.  I can understand but I miss the free exchange .

My other reason is more personal, my life has changed due to my husband's health, so freedom to dash off to this exhibition or that interesting event have been curtailed. therefore less interesting things to share.

Life not all gloom though and yesterday there was a meeting of "the Girls" and in amongst setting the world to rights and a lot of laughter we had a little mini session of making Christmas gift tags.

Mine are the botton line. 

So I will make this my Christmas greetings to anyone who still hasn't given up on me.  I don't make resolutions but I am going to try and make an effort in the new year. 

Monday, April 04, 2016

Can't resist..........

......on Saturday we went to the Maltings in Farnham, Surrey. We have been before for their textile event but this time it was Antiques and Collectibles. 
The Maltings, an old brewery is an absolute maze of  corridors and stairs which lead to room of various size.  At one point you climb some very suspicious looking stairs up onto the stage and beyond.  Which give it all a feeling of a treasure hunt.  Which it was. My first find was this box.
Who could resist but this is what was inside.
Apparently belonged to an old gentleman who used to make large model railway engines.  The used sets have odd ones missing but the unused set is a completee alphabet, about 2" square.
We then found these, again irresistible.
When I fist came to I used to work for the Star newspaper in Bouverie Street. I am so glad I don't live in a time when you have to takes a cod's head and boil it. Some of the invalid recipes would have you up and about in no fear of been fed more of it. I could have done with this as Math was never my strong point.
My last purchase, it is huge,

I think you would need a very strong coffee table but it is full of wonderful images of fashion from bear skins to mini skirts,

I was gifted these tiny little pewter owlon their new perch.

Add to this a delicious lunch with friends, a good day.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Oh my goodness........

Just look at this post from the wonderful Seth Apter, a retreat he hosted in Taos, New Mexico.  What a fantastic time they must have had  filling these Cabinets of Curiosity. I can only dream.
Sometime ago I started my own Box of Curiosities and reading Seth's post today really fired me to go and take another look at it. :I think it could do with some of the excitements that the group made.

Might just go and have a little play.

Thursday, March 24, 2016

All the usual excuses........

..for not posting.  I have found time to sew though.  The panel I bought at the Knit and Stitch at Olympia has had a few stitches added,


and is now a cushion.
I also made a little Mandy Patullo type hare.
He is about 5inches across. Not quite sure what to do with him now.
 Had a great day yesterday with a very talented friend.  She showed us how to make these little people.
Mine is on the right.  Loved how different they were.  She has promised to start a blog soon so I will let you know.
So sad for the people of Belgium.  We lived there for a few years and my son was born there. So many happy memories.

We had one glorious day this week so we did the Spring tidy on the garden, so satisfying but still a lot to do.
We are having new windows installed soon, unbelievable the stuff that accumulated between the door and the window in the spare room, so back to the clear out.

This blew my mind, as I couldn't ice a cup cake, just look how small it is.  A Happy and Peaceful Easter to all.

Saturday, March 05, 2016

Disgusted and delighted........

Disgusted with Twisted Thread for their pricing policy at the Spring Knitting and Stitching Show at Olympia. £16.00 entrance to selling show seems rather greedy.  The show is no where near as big as Ally Pally so I hate to think what they will be asking for that in October.  Be careful Twisted Threat you will price yourself out of the market. Because I was still reeling I didn't buy a catalogue and of course I bought something but the trader hadn't put their card in and I haven't a clue who they were so if anyone knows the name of the couple who were selling reproductions of impressionists paintings on fabric can you please let me know because I would like some of their other fabrics.

Right, having finished moaning I can say that we had a very enjoyable day.  So nice to find someone that you didn't know about and who's work you loved.  Mary Sleigh , textile artist and bookmaker, great combination. This is what had my juices flowing.

It was almost the first thing we saw but I just had to go back at the end of the day for another look.They fold up into books but it was the delicacy of the fabric and the stitching that I loved.
Thank you for allowing me to photograph.

I worked out how to make the gift card and cotton reel from my last post.
Good fun and quick to make.
Well the show really gave me a creative kick and then our Maylands Textile Group meeting yesterday gave me another.  I counted up this morning and I now have ten projects vying for attention in my butterfly brain.
Better go and start something.

Monday, February 29, 2016


is everyone as excited as me at the lengthening days. Just makes me feel better, hoping that warmth will follow soon as it is still a tad cold for a chilly mortal like me.
You are not supposed covert your neighbours goods but a friend of mine has a piece which I love.  It is a representation of a tin mine in Cornwall made in Cornish Slate and Metal.  I decided to have a go myself,    as I had no slate to hand I layered canvas here it is only resembling the original in composition.

My hexie quilt is growing slowly and serving double duty in keeping my knees warm. I found a fleece with a good black edge so that will be the backing , I thought I had nearly done enough but when I put them together I still have a long way to go.

Yesterday was great fun I went to see a friend in an excellent  production of Forbidden Broadway.
Funny parodies of  famous songs. What fun. Lots of clips from other productions on You Tube if you are interested.

I have had my Pinterest fix as per usual and this week the side of me that loves shabby chic is winning. I love how I swing between rust and lace, altering thoughts indeed.
I liked both these ideas which, apparently, started life as the middles of toilet rolls. Not tutorials but I think you can work them out.
From Vintage Inspired

The second one brings me to an interesting point about Pinterest.  I wich people would be more careful when chosing their
 links.  You have to have a link to the actual article not just the site, otherwise you spend hours scrolling through to find the item you want was posted years ago or worse you cannot locate it at all.
 This is the case with this one, I was unable to track down the original of these gift tags.
Pockets made from flattened toilet paper roll covered with old book page.... Good idea for cute notes:  

Looking forward to a visit to the Spring Knitting and Stitching Show this week.  A little list of neeedles and such but I am sure something else will tempt me.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

I don't know why.....

I like pictures of disintegration....perhaps it's my age....this morning I found this link on Facebook one of  the   Through our Hands posts.A collection by Katy Cowan.
One of my favourites.

 I have finally managed to dig out the paints and mediums.
The first was going to be something else and then turned itself into something akin to the view of Black Combe at the top of this blog. 
The "fence" is hessian. I guess I really am homesick at the moment.  The traffic chaos which is becoming the norm around Dartford has me hankering for winds off the sea.
The next one was based on a tutorial in the excellent "wabi-sabi Art Workshop" by Serena Barton.
 Making this gave me great satisfaction. 

Sunday, February 21, 2016

Something completely different......

Last week was half term holiday for schools and my nephew brought his family to London for a few days.  I joined them at the Science Museum, somewhere I hadn't visited since my own children were small and I can tell you I will be going back, hopefully when it is less crowded and with my "proper" camera which is very good in low light. Just maybe I will get a chance to play on some of the touch screen (used to be push buttons). I did manage a few shots.
Loved this display in the entrance.

 and this had me really excited.( you can tell by the bluriness.)
So much to see, made me feel like this
 Hopefully I'll go while this exhibition is on.

Thursday I had a little play day with my friend and we made wonky houses, I was inspired by this picture on Pinterest from this site
Mine is on the left, I found a place for it.

    I have a new print tray to fill.  Hurrah.
Yesterday I finally managed to play with paint. I a video from France Papillon as a guideand if the result isn't quite up to her standard I had great fun.  The image is one of my favourites of my mother which I altered in my new Corel PaintShop Pro 7 (Christmas gift from son which I learning to love)

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

In need of inspiration?????

This popped up on my Facebook feed this morning.  A link to an interactive look at "The Garden of Earthly Delights" by Heronimus Bosch.


Not much going to get done round here today!

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Little outing.......

...Thursday evening, a special treat, I went to listen to a talk by Janet Bolton.  I had seen pictures of her work but I was unprepared for haw fascinating it was going to be to here her talk about her life and work.  To see her work close to gave a new understanding on her, often long, process of such beautifully simple images. If you have the chance go listen.  One of the things she said, which I think will stick, was that when you are creating "the only person you need to please is yourself."  A very liberating statement I think.

She also made me feel very homesick as she spoke of the wonderful light of the northern counties, in particular Lancashire our shared home county. I gave myself a treat  to this book 
Tableaux textiles - Janet Bolton
Don't you just love those sheep?

Yesterday was not so good. This may end in a have been warned.   A friend needed transport to a hospital, so off at mid-day off we went, a 25 minute journey.  She received treatment which in the nature of things took a little while and at 5 o'clock we set off home.  FIVE HOURS later we arrived home . The adverse weather had closed the Dartford Bridge and the area gridlocked.  Now here comes the rant, these things happen but they are made far worse by QUEUE JUMPERS  and people who can't obey the simple rule  which says STAY OUT OF THE YELLOW BOX UNTIL YOUR EXIT IS CLEAR.  We need another river crossing FAR AWAY FROM DARTFORD and we need to NOW. 
You can take your ear defenders off now.

The NFL season has ended, really enjoyed watching the recording yesterday and the BBC presentation team were great.  Now I have to re-think my entertainment whilst sewing. American Football is great because of all the breaks, though I still hate the ad break after the kick return but I digress.
During the play off season I have occupied my hands with this,

This is a vintage napkin, so about 8" x 8". I used grey sewing cotton which was part of a gift from my friend Gudrun who died last year. The white embroidery was on the cloth. Stream of conciousness stuff really but loosely based on Kent my adopted county.
I spoke of home sickness and these wonderful cloud effects, last week,  made me hanker for a walk own the Coast Road.

Photograph by Jim Raven.
Apparently they are called nacreous clouds 
a result of one of the recent storms.
I still think the weather has been worse since we started naming storms.

Monday, February 01, 2016


...I started this blog on the 13th January 2006.  Ten years....feels like five at the  most.  Frightening at my age.  I have been very lax (lazy) of late in posting, in fact the last post was in November last year, so I feel I must give myself a good talking too and decide whether I am going to continue which, I feel, would have to be on a regular basis to have any value.  So while I am dithering here is a bit of an update.

We went to the Samuel Pepys' exhibition at the Greenwich Maritime Museum,  really good displays but perhaps more about the times than the man.

I was a cold and frosty morning one of the only ones this winter, because of the mild weather it looked more like March than January.(The ppor garden plants don't know whether they are coming or going)
Have you noticed how there is always someone in a red jacket when you want to take a photo?
I just love trees in winter.

I have been sewing, another chair back cover completed. This time I took an A A Milne poem for my starting point.
I really enjoy my mind meanders on these and am now looking for another cover to make a third.
For you exhibition last year I mounted the piece of faux boro I had made inspired by the work I had seen here and here . This was mine
I am thinking of taking it off it's mount and extending it, not quite sure how or even why.

One of the reasons for being so remiss with blog posts it the amount of time I spend on my ipad.  A good portion of it on Pinterest.. This is my page
I did think I would try to also mention some of the things I found interesting on here. This is a post on a Japanese artist Junko Oki which I pinned because of this image,

So....there you go.  We shall see.