Monday, 29 April 2013

What a way to spend my bloggiversary.


Rather later in the day than planned, I am here to mark the fifth(not fourth as I initially reported) anniversary of my blog.
I can't believe that five years have passed since I first tiptoed into this part of cyberspace from the pages of Flickr.
I predicted my blog would last 4 years before I filled up allowance of space, but it seems to be going on. 
I've made some lovely friends and was very good at reading blogs for at least three years but lately its all got too much. 
I'm grateful to everyone who reads and comments still.
Anyhow lets get on to the customary giveaway to celebrate. Two brooches.

Comment below and add the word pink or green (for obvious reasons) and you can go into the draw for one of these brooches. I will choose one from each colour.
The giveaway will be closed on Thursday afternoon.

Hope you like them.

Today I have mostly been ironing.
You know what its like....the ironing basket gets filled up and every time you iron you leave a bit behind. Well today I was determined to iron everything. 
HUGE Damask  tablecloth; Egyptian cotton sheets; small embroidered table covers. And this is where it got a bit weird.I was ironing this familiar object when I suddenly spotted......

is it 'the scream' in cutwork? 
The leaf at the other end has only one hole.
And suddenly all the motifs took on lives of their own. 

Look at this cute little bear popping out of a box in the middle of a flower. 
Or is it just me?

When I'd finished the ironing I promised myself I'd clean the bedroom, (such fun!) change the bed, put away all the clothes, dust and hoover.

But the drive belt had snapped on the dyson. No problem according to Sam from Unifit: watch with what ease he removes the sole plate. I'm with him there. Removing the old belt..easy ours had snapped; removing the brush roll...yes I managed that but then...if you look carefully you can see that Sam from Unifit grimaces...grits his teeth, his arm trembles  but still asserts 'Thats how easy it is'. At least  Matt from espares  has the good grace to admit its a 'little tricky. '

Hetty and Jules are as baffled as I am.

After an hour and a half with the aid of a knife and the handle of a washing up brush I conceded. 
You need long fingers like ET and biceps like Arnie (Schwarzenegger) to stretch the rubber band whilst niftily hooking it round the spindle of the motor.
My husband came home and we fixed it together but I have to admit..its twisted.
Never mind works. I will ignore the heat and the slight smell of hot rubber.

Its taken me a few days to recover from my wedding flower escapades at the weekend.
A young woman who I used to teach asked me ages ago to do her wedding flowers. She wanted mainly 'gyp'. In her original email she asked me to do pew ends.
I did buttonholes.
I did bigger 'ladies' buttonholes
I did corsages for the mothers
I did a wrist corsage for the bridesmaid.
I did the bouquet.
I did an arrangement on the altar
and several bunches in jam jars for the top table at the reception

 I discovered this omission on Friday afternoon so after a sleepless night  I made an early saturday morning trip to the wholesalers 25 miles away for some more 'gyp' and managed to tie 10 little bunches to the ends of the pews. Just in time.

It looked very pretty but I was so embarrassed that I'd just not taken it on board that I had to do them in the first place, and quite worrying.
I slept for the rest of the afternoon.

 Hetty news. She's had a drastic haircut. She's not happy. When we were protecting the flowers from wilting by not putting on the heating, she was sitting shivering so we had to put her coat on.

But I like how we can see her eyes now. 

(Just a note...I have just found a whole lot of comments in my spam folder. I don't know why or how but I am sorry if I haven't replied, They all had addresses as 'no reply' . If you would like a direct reply  you have to comment with a google account id.)

Wednesday, 24 April 2013


Green . Is it envy? Jealous hearts? The green-eyed monster?
Or is it Naivety? Innocence? 
Or do you think of the green that is connected with the environment?

Well I would like to use the thesaurus for my definition: 

Definition: young,new,blooming
Synonyms: bosky,budding, burgeoning, callow, developing,flourishing, foliate, fresh, grassy, growing, half-formed, immature, infant, juvenile, leafy, lush, maturing, pliable, puerile, pullulating, raw, recent, sprouting, supple, tender, undecayed, undried, unfledged, ungrown, unripe, unseasoned, verdant, verduous, youthful

BOSKY!  What a wonderful word.
In my failed attempt to achieve palest duck egg dyed velvet I have managed to produce a lot of shades of shades of green and have made some Bosky Brooches.

Tender brooches?

 And big.

These are all long  brooches.

This one has kisses. 

and this one is a bit buttoned up. 

 My favourite is this polka dot one.

Now I've started with the dots  I feel a dotless heart is a little naked. 


Or should that be a spotless heart?
All will be available in my etsy shop but if they are anything like the last batch they won't be there long.

Monday, 22 April 2013


The hearts have been very popular.
No sooner do I show them than I sell them. I'm not complaining!
Its lovely to have such appreciative viewers. Long may it continue.
BUT it can get a bit repetitive and I have to make it fun by playing with ideas. 
I made these fruity coloured hearts and thought the centres were just crying out for some spots.

 What do you think? Hand stitching, French knots, what's not to like? 
I know I really enjoyed doing it. 
Strangely, these are colours of the Opal Fruits (Starbursts for you young 'uns) that I liked the least.

 But for stitching I think these are my current favourite colours.

Who remembers Spangles? They were the fruity sweets we had. They came in other flavours besides fruit. Acid drops, made your saliva glands ache;  spearmint, Old English, butterscotch?
Any more?
Probably Barley Sugar.

I'm not good at dying and I'm trying to remember how I get the palest duck egg blue/turquoise that I'm so fond of, so no subtlety for now.

Last week, just after I'd posted in fact, a big but surprisingly light package arrived from Ramster. Only one big piece and four brooches unsold, and a nice big fat and very welcome cheque in an envelope. 
It was the fishy piece that came back and I am really pleased. 
I just wasn't ready to say goodbye.

I expect you south dwelling people are enjoying beautiful sunshine now. Well its grey and wet here. We had a lovely day on Saturday with blue sky and warm sunshine. I even did a tentative bit of gardening..well, re potting really. 
It made a tremendous difference to everything having a day of sun. I drove along the motorway today and was amazed by bright green lumpy forms on the side of the road which I realised were budding bushes. 
About time.

Monday, 15 April 2013

Moon Landing

Well its such a long time since I came here that I'm sure there's a parrallell between number of moon landings=number of blog posts this year but I just can't think of it now.

I had a mad rush of posts when I made lots of stuff and then I ran out of steam. Then I started again.
I have to confess that I post a lot more stuff on my fb page, so all these hearts sold out from my etsy shop instantly with orders for more.

 As I always say, the pinks are just luscious in real life. Some of the below brooches are also sold but teh one I like the best isn't.
 Its the one bang in the centre below with a pink middle and blue spikes.
Ah well, I'm sure when its seen in public at Art an dGarden in June it will appeal in the flesh.

Further to the Ramster submission of the two pieces I showed here, I've had my facebook spies out and several have reported that there have been sightings and my work was indeed hung at Ramster. The exhibition is now over and I haven't  heard a word. 
Last night I had a dream. I was at Ramster.(I've never been) I couldn't get to the big barn in which my work was hung and I wanted to go to the toilet but the only one available was in public(You must have had that dream)
 Someone was sick all over my dress (I never wear dresses but I'm always tall and slim when I'm dreaming) and I found the thing they call 'The Browser' was an old cardboard box and all the pieces were crammed into into it and the brooches I sent were all mangled and looked as if Hetty had been at them. I ended up with two mobile phones and a plate of curry.
Thats the inside of my head at night.

Last week was a game of two covers.

I have been asked by a singer songwriter in Pennsylvania to make a piece of art for his new album cover. I've done it and I really like it and he really likes it and his wife and children really like it and when he sends me the album I'll show it all and hope you really like it then you'll all buy a copy and I'll get royalties.

The second kind of cover was not such fun. Ages ago, years and years ago, we bought a flowery sofa and I couldn't stand the pattern so I bought yards and yards of fabric (too much) and made a loose cover for it and its matching chair. Recently the seat cushions so much else in our humble abode..sprang a leak. When I tried to pull it together my fingers went through and caused more leaks. 
(Un)fortunately I found enough of the fabric leftover to make three new seat covers. Of course they are beautiful pristine and bright and the rest of the sofa doesn't quite match but they are WHOLE and CLEAN even if their contents are disintegrating. 
I am also quite pleased with myself for  having devised a much better pattern for box cushion covers with overlapping  closures and no need for a zip.

Since my last blog post a certain Iron Lady has died. I mention this ONLY to observe that she died on my younger sons 28th Birthday, which is strange when you consider that Princess Diana died on my other sons 15th birthday.

Hmm what else?

The sun came out on saturday morning and we had done the weekly shop in the week so we decided to go out for a tootle.Of course by the time we set off the sun had gone in but that didn't stop Hetty leading the way enthusiastically.

We went to Wycoller. Its a very pretty village near Colne. There's a stream running through it 

with stone bridges here and there and a ruined Manor House

On one bank of the stream there is an area of structures made from living willow.

Must go back and see it in leaf.

And the locals were friendly.

st of my pictures can be enlarged by clicking on them.

Dear Anonymous.....

....don't waste your time...I have a spam filter.