Saturday, 29 November 2014

My Week

As always I have found the week has passed me by in a whirlwind of adventures, beginning on Sunday with a trip up into the pretty Welsh hills to Ruthin Craft Centre for the beautiful Julie Arkell "Away" exhibition. I have loved her work since the first time I encountered it, feeling drawn in by her very unique style of nostalgia and sentimentality, and her unashamed thriftiness, keeping every little odd-and-end and finding a place for it somewhere. 
My second big adventure of the week was taking the train to Chester with one of my dearest dears for her Birthday shenanigans. There was sock knitting on the train, vintage shopping, dress buying (Cath Kidston sale dress, it would have been rude not to...) much, much tea drinking and cherry scones that were so large that we were somewhat shocked. The other highlights of the week have been flowers from husband "to make our place nice", kittens discovered in a pile, crochet procrastination and postal My Little Pony loveliness from another of my dearies with a sweet Blythe doll postcard. I am truly so very lucky to have so many sweet dearies in my life. 

Wednesday, 26 November 2014

My Makings...

I've been a busy little maker-bee this week, full of ideas and inspiration. I had a very fabulous day out with one of my lovely friends for her birthday, so of course I needed a new brooch for the occasion. I quickly whipped up a pretty kilt-pin flower brooch which looks, if I do say so, rather splendid on my tweedy winter coat with my vintage-inspired flower brooch. 
 Embracing the chilly weather, I had a cosy day at home finishing my latest project, an Autumn inspired cushion, to remind me of the changing seasons and keep me feeling warm as the days get colder. 
I am planning some sock knitting time over the next few days, with second-sock syndrome holding me back with my current pair!

Saturday, 22 November 2014

My Week

What a delightful week it has been! It started rather well with the Wonderful Wool day, but I have spent the rest of the week battling the dreaded lurgy. Despite that, I have tried my best to have a jolly time, having an appropriate amount of sofa/cat/tea/cake time, as well as a bit of crochet time, working on my Mood Blanket and a shiny-new "make myself feel better" project - a granny square cushion cover in warm autumnal colours. 
I had adventure-tickets this week too - another evening with Mr Mark Thomas, this time in the thoroughly grand Chester Town Hall, and a trip to Manchester for dinner at The Cornerhouse and a visit with my current most favourite band Allo Darlin'. That was at the Deaf Institute, which is worth a look if only for the glorious wallpaper that adorns the place. Allo Darlin' are absolute happiness and anyone that has crept up to me quietly since Thursday will have found me humming songs from their new album "We Come From the Same Place" which has some delightfully catchy little numbers. They were supported by the equally sweet Making Marks, they have sweet little tunes in English and Norwegian, and they are splendid. 
So despite the lurgy, all things considered, it has been a really rather lovely week. 

Friday, 21 November 2014

Taking Stock

Following in the footsteps of the always delightful Pip at Meet Me at Mikes, I am taking stock using her lovely list
Making : granny squares - a blanket and a cushion cover
Cooking : nice and easy Easter Biscuits
Drinking : Tea. Always tea
Reading: "The Power of Six" by Pittacus Lore and "We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves" by Karen Joy Fowler
Wanting: tea dresses and vintage brooches
Looking: forward to Pizza Night and hanging out with husband
Playing: "We Come from the Same Place" by Allo Darlin'
Deciding: what sort of edge would suit my Autumn-coloured cushion
Wishing: for a trip to see the Julie Arkell exhibition at Ruthin Craft Centre
Enjoying: cups of tea 
Waiting: patiently for a day of vintage/charity shopping and cake with one of my dearies
Liking: Allo Darlin' and Making Marks 
Wondering: if starting another pair of socks would be wrong when I have two pairs waiting to be finished
Loving: my Autumn fireplace bunting
Pondering: ideas for pretty things to make
Considering: a new hair cut and possibly going back to brunette (eek)
Watching: "Sherlock", "Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D" and my my current movie of the moment "Splash"
Hoping: for inspiration
Marvelling: at how much I love my new shoes
Needing: a couple of extra hours in the day...
Smelling: not much of anything, still getting rid of a pesky cold
Wearing: my new shoes and newly finished scarf constantly, and my glasses today
Following: lots of lovely new blogs, but always looking for more!
Noticing: that the weather has suddenly changed from Autumn to Winter
Knowing: that the world is a bit of a scary place, but trying to make my little bit of it nice and cosy
Thinking: that I would rather like to have a go at Nale Binding, and arranging a cuppa with someone who can show me how!
Admiring: Sidmouth_Poppy and bodkincreates on instagram
Sorting: the homestead ready for festive cheer
Buying: lots of woolly tights for winter
Getting: a little bit excited for my birthday and the shenanigan plotting that is happening!
Bookmarking: lots of pretty gifty stuff for my favourite folks!
Disliking: the amount of things to do before I'm ready for Christmas
Opening: my eyes and being inspired
Giggling: at my grown up cats playing like kittens
Feeling: a little bit tired after a night in my dancing shoes (my regular shoes just not doing the regular walking)
Snacking: on Rhubarb and Custard sweeties
Coveting: Cath Kidston frocks for my birthday
Helping: lots of people starting off on their crochet adventures
Hearing: some chatter about Christmas, I think the excitement is starting

Saturday, 15 November 2014

my week...

After spending last week in cosy hibernation, this week has been about adventures and lovely times. We ventured to Liverpool to see Mark Thomas, and Manchester to see Thurston Moore, and there was a charity shop adventure that involved the purchase of many quality cassettes for my little car Mavis, and of course there was cake. 
To be honest though, there has been a respectable amount of hibernating happening here too, with kitty-cuddles and tea drinking and some prettifying the house with paper pom-poms.
Today was a most splendid combination of hibernation and adventure, spent teaching crochet at the Wonderful Wool Day in a local chapel surrounded by lovely crafty folks and drinking tea. There were all sorts of amazing things going on, and I was able to have a little look at Nale Binding which is a bit fancy looking! It was a nice little reminder of the sheer amount of fabulous that comes as part of my life as a full-time professional-crafter.

Wednesday, 12 November 2014


The change of season and the autumny-wintery chill in the air is inspiring my makes this week. My granny squares are ever-more leafy coloured, and my fireplace in newly adorned with a string of crochet flowers and acorns. I found some lovely yarn in my stash and made myself a mossy-green crochet scarf for extra cosiness on my outside adventures. 
When the fire is lit and it's dark earlier and earlier I am happy to be cosy in our little home. 

Saturday, 8 November 2014

My Week...

It's been a quiet week. I've been making time to be at home and cosy, putting big adventures temporarily on hold for a much-needed battery-recharge. There was a little bit more baking (more Easter biscuits - I love them), some end-of-season rose picking, and some time for whimsical movies - the highlights being "Splash", "Pirates of the Caribbean" and "Saving Mr. Banks". 
 The highlight of my quiet little week was the arrival of my delightful new shoes, the most spiffingly-splendid shoes that have been in my possession for quite some time, as I am usually a devoted wearer of Converse sneakers and Dr Marten boots. But I love my new shoes, and have worn them loyally every day since they landed at my door, with a variety of coloured tights - mustard and navy being a jolly good match - and I think they might be friends for life. 

Friday, 7 November 2014


This week has been less about adventures and more about hibernation. I have been quietly crafting at home, watching the world go by through my window, mostly the chickens mooching around the garden, and enjoying the leaves changing colour.
My crafty projects are all growing, I have finished my first thirty squares for my mood blanket, each representing the day it was made. 

Making a square every evening gives me an opportunity to think about the day, the things that have been interesting or colour combinations that have caught my eye. Each square is different and yet they all sit so nicely together, complimenting each other. I'm joining as I go along, so I can see a blanket emerging, and I look forward to adding a new square and seeing it grow. 

 My other blankety project is knitted and is going to be cosy. I think that I may have an addiction to making blankets, but I like to have a cosy home.
 My toes will be cosy too in no time, my Frankensocks will soon be done. I think they are rather splendidly jazzy, so many colours and stripes.

Sunday, 2 November 2014

A Little Bit of Baking

Today I did a little bit of baking. I am not by nature a baking sort of person, I get a little bit nervous of wasting ingredients and am always utterly convinced that everything will go horribly wrong, and I am most definitely not my positive self or as adventurous at baking as I am at craftiness. In a crafty project I can imagine how something will look and I can put my mind to making it, but no such bravery for baking. But today I put on my most brave face, pulled up my sleeves and made some little biscuits. 
They are not terribly fancy, it must be said, but I am terribly proud of my little attempt. They are a basic Easter Biscuit recipe, with a teensy bit of nutmeg and cinnamon on top.
The recipe looks a little bit like this...
4oz of Butter
4oz of sugar
1 egg
8oz of flour
It's nice and simple - mix up the butter and sugar, beat in the egg, add the flour. Once it was sort of a dough I popped it in the fridge for a bit, then rolled it out, cut out my shapes, painted on some milk, sprinkled on some sugar, nutmeg and cinnamon and put them in the oven for about 20mins.
They are pretty tasty, if I do say so myself. I might even put on my brave face for another batch some time soon.

Saturday, 1 November 2014

My Week...

It has been a week of delightful adventures, cake and craftiness. There was a trip to the seaside on Sunday, with a visit to Oriel Mostyn, and a splendid mooch along the seafront. I always enjoy the quaintness, and the peachy pastelness of the hotels. There was also a little bit of time for a trip to Chester, and one to Liverpool, for shopping and festive present buying, and regular tea and cake breaks. 

On Thursday one of my dearest, sweetest friends visited, and as always it was like we'd never been apart. There was a wander up to the old castle mound in Oswestry, and a visit to two of my favourite tea rooms and the gallery. It was a splendid day and reminded me yet again of the loyalty from my foul-weather friend that I am more grateful for than I have words to explain.
My personal crafty endeavours this week have mostly been the progress of my latest pair of Frankensocks, squares for my mood blanket and a dainty little crocheted flower. The flower pattern came from a book that had belonged to my Great-Grandmother. It was an opportunity to connect with a lady of whom I have only the vaguest recollections, mostly where dots have been joined by the people that knew her, through their stories and anecdotes. I cherish the idea that I sat working through a pattern that she herself may have tried, wondering if she stumbled at the same points, if she would have found my "magic ring" adaptation interesting or if she stuck rigidly to the instructions. I felt a heavy sense of missing out on the chance to spend time with a kindred spirit, but that I am joined to her with the knowledge that she may have taught my gran to knit, and that she in-turn taught me - the passing of skills from generation to generation.