Sunday, 15 October 2017

You can guess where I went Friday!

What a lovely way to celebrate a birthday- at the Knitting and Stitching Show at Alexander Palace.  I went with my friend Diane, who kindly drove me in her lovely little sports car, another +!! 
The traffic was kind to us and we got there as the doors opened. The first person we saw was Lynda Monk aka Purple Missus, a  member of the exhibiting textile group we all used to belong to.  It was good to catch up on her news and we had to buy her latest book. 

I had a chat with Jo Beattie, I can't believe it was three years ago, that I first spoke to her and admired her work. Interesting to see how her work has developed since then. 
After looking at her work, it was a quick hello and 'thank you' to Ann Small, as she was very busy talking to interested stitcher's.  The day went far too quickly, lots of lovely exhibitions to admire and stalls to tempt us to part with our money.  I got most things on my list and a few extras that I just couldn't resist! 

My stash, I unpacked it yesterday, as I ran out of time once I got in from Ally Pally.  As I was home alone, I had time to put everything away tidily so I know where to find it when it is needed. 
Home alone meant time to do something creative so, I cut out another felt hare, using wool felt this time, rather than a mixture of wool and rayon/viscose and worked on my man. It always surprises me how much stuffing  dolls take! 

 Today, being so sunny and mild, has been spent in the garden, pottering. It was so warm we were able to eat lunch by the stream and even had a late afternoon cup of tea without needing thick cardigans- bliss!  Feeling nicely relaxed, ready for work tomorrow.
Have a good week!

Thursday, 12 October 2017

Finished today.

Wherever I go, I normally have a little project I carry around with me, either crochet or sewing that I can do if I have a few spare minutes. My latest project has been this little hare made in a wool mix felt.  It is a pattern from the Prims magazine, Spring 2011, with my own twist on it.  All hand-stitched with a red needle-felted heart on his chest and white pom tail. He is approximately 6" tall.

Now I need to find another 'carry project.'

Sunday, 8 October 2017


 I was lucky enough to be allowed to help on the school music trip yesterday to the London Palladium to see Rain, a Beetles tribute act from America, celebrating 50 years of the Beetles.  (When I was about 9 years old, I drew and embroidered a cushion cover with the faces of the 'fab four', as I was a big Beetles fan)   Anyway, Rain, were amazing!!!  So much so, that if they come over here again, I want to see them again. Such great music, that you could believe it was not a tribute act. It had us up on our feet dancing and singing along. As the show progressed, they changed their looks and outfits to fit the era of the songs.  On the way home, lots of discussion about the show, and we could not find anything that could be done to improve it.
Standing waiting for the taxi after the show, I could see Liberty's, unfortunately no time to go shopping, also passed a Cass Art shop as well.  I need another trip to London soon.

As I have not done anything creative for two nights, I hope to do some work on the man. 

Thursday, 5 October 2017

Button Moon.

I have managed to put the finishing touches to my hare. His whiskers, made from a fine fishing line, were so fiddly!  

 Love you to the moon and back, I see the moon and the moon sees me, harvest moon, wish upon a star, star gazing, Button Moon (what I shall call him), wish for the moon and one of my favourite's is ' when the moonbeams kissed the sea' by Shelley.  These  are just some of the many phrases that I thought of when making my hare.
 As the hares are thought to be looking at the stars or moon, I had a lovely faceted pearl button in my collection just waiting for the right chance to be used. This was it, I wanted it to represent the moon. The star on his ribbon has been in my stash for years,( it was made for paper crafting  and attached  to paper/card using glue,) so I put a hole in it with my soldering iron and then attached a jump ring.
 Now you know why I painted my hare Prussian blue! He has been fun to make, but I wont rush to make anymore in the foreseeable future, too many others things I want to create.
I had a lovely weekend at my mothers helping get her very long front garden ready for Autumn planting. I have also had another meal out as well this week, this time for my hubby's 70th birthday. Tomorrow night I have the family round here for a meal as we have a total of four birthdays this month to celebrate. More puddings for me to make!😁
On Saturday I am going to the Palladium to see the show about the Beatles.

Thursday, 28 September 2017

Another body on the table.

I have had a busy few nights so not got as quite as much done as I had hoped, but spending
 time with family and friends is very  special and not to be missed. 
It also means I get to do more cooking - one pudding and two cakes.
Early in the summer to raise funds for a little boy, Jacob 's cancer treatment, there was a raffle for a beautiful textile hare. Unfortunately I couldn't find out how to bid on it, so someone else is the lucky owner of it.  It made me decide to have a go at making one for myself, especially as I had seen one, (the first for a very long time) on a  steam train journey in the Lake District.  I bought the pattern from Emma Hall, and it was all stitched, stuffed and constructed ready for me to do my own thing on it, Sunday while hubby was at Duxford. Going with the theme of hares gazing at stars or the moon, I have painted him in Prussian Blue and stencilled little stars over him. Now to work on his face.

 I have also started work on another doll, another male, and in the very early stages of construction.

Saturday, 23 September 2017


 Guitar finished.

 Cigarette made.

 Managed to find a peace badge small enough to go on her afghan coat.
Project finished.
Now to finish the hare.
 I have also done a bit of baking, chocolate fudge brownies with white chocolate for a McMillan coffee morning........
 Rocky road for two little boys birthday party........
 Today we were going to Mersea to meet up with some of Kezia's relatives who we have not seen for a long time so I made Limoncello mousse (Gino's recipe)......
 Plus a fresh fruit brulee.
 We needed to get some fresh air and to walk off our lunch lunch, so went along the beach, so many jellyfish have been washed up!

Thursday, 21 September 2017

Not much left to do on my latest doll.

I had thought that she would be finished by now, but the spray aerosol  varnish, needed for her guitar, had a blocked nozzle, so it necessitated  a quick trip to Basildon to get another can. The guitar has now been sprayed but it requires time to harden.
 Meanwhile, I made her sunglasses and am now just finishing the baby, so fingers crossed tomorrow night she will be completed.

Monday, 18 September 2017

Making progress.

The guitar for my hippie doll is nearly finished. Tomorrow night it will have a coat of varnish and Wednesday night when the varnish is nice and hard, it will have the strings put on.  Just the sunglasses then and she will be finished.

While waiting for the paint to dry on various parts of the guitar, I have started to stuff my hare.  one more arm to stuff and then the ears to make. As per usual, I am not following the instructions. Lol

Saturday, 16 September 2017

And bake!!

Such a busy week!!  Last Friday night I was out celebrating a friends party until 2 a.m. Great live band that had us all dancing.  Sunday an early start to go to Euro Finals at Santa Pod. Long before I met my husband he used to spend many weekends here, working in a team on his friends drag racing car  . We now try and go every September to this event, it is so exciting!  We had seats right by the starting line, and as the cars raced off you could feel the power of the engines through your body. the speeds they reach are phenomenal! Although I was wearing ear defenders, I still felt on Monday at work I was talking a lot louder than usual.

 Loved the artwork on this van
 Unfortunately the rain stopped the racing early, as it is far too dangerous to race on a damp strip.

 Jet engine car and bus. This is the first time I have seen the jet bus.
I have been busy baking again this week. Tuesday night I made Hummingbird Bundt cake, I iced it on Wednesday after work.
 Thursday needed me to make Caramac cheesecake's and Malteser slice for my daughter to take to Birmingham when she visited a friend for a picnic on top of the Malvern Hills.

 Gina blogged last week about a challenge she is doing, trying new recipes from a cookbook on her shelf.  I love to try new recipes but I tend to prefer to make a  cake or dessert. So this week I tried two new savoury recipes out, sweet potato and red onion fritata (Internet recipe) and Vietnamese cod, prawn and coconut curry (Asda magazine recipe). I will be making both again.
 I have two projects on the go at the moment, first of all  I have started work on a guitar for my hippie doll. made from balsa wood and grey-board, a little filler around the edges and a coat of gesso before painting.
Project number two, is a hare. When I was on a steam train a couple of weeks ago in the Lake District I saw one , the first I have seen for a long time. I hope to start stuffing him this weekend.

Saturday, 9 September 2017

And now for the jester and more.

I was going to try and take photos of the various stages I went through to create my doll, but once I get creating, stopping to take photos just doesn't happen.

 Although I was supposed to be using the pattern that Ray supplied, because I got inspired I had to adapt/make all patterns I needed for my doll (apart from the head) as her shape would not have been right. 

She has now got suspenders to hold he stockings up.

I tried black hair on her first but didn't like it so had to send away for a large piece of Tibetan lambskin.  I made several 'wigs' in felt  to try on her for size before making the real one. My fingers were very sore after stitching it together and then stitching it on her head,

Although it doesn't show in the photo, her hat was made with a cotton fabric that had a little sparkle in it.  I have had the pack of cards in my playroom for years, they were in a Christmas cracker, just waiting for the right project to use them in. The cog button I got from Craft Arena and re-painted.

My daughter thinks she has the look of Christina Aguilera from the film 'Moulin Rouge' about her. 
I learnt so much making this doll, and as always feel sad when they are finished but there is the excitement of what to make next.

She is residing at the moment in my dining room.

My doll was finished in time for me to take to the July meeting of Doll club, where we put all the dolls together to take a group photo.
The doll I started at this meeting was from a pattern I bought off the Internet, 'Anya Baba, The Traveler Doll' by  Angela Jarecki. She is the first stump doll I have ever made, and the pattern contained some different techniques in over 100 pages of instructions.
Me, being me, I have put my own twist to the doll.
I have made her a hippy, hence the Afghan coat.   Instead of her walking pole, I am going to try and make her a guitar!!! watch this space.
Her hair came from an Afro/ Caribbean hair shop in Ridley Road market.
As I mentioned in my last blog, I crochet most evenings in an attempt to unwind,  I managed to complete this blanket when I stayed with my mother.  As one project finishes it is on with the next....

The pattern is called Namaqualand by Dedri Uys. I have yet again, done my own thing!

It seems to have been a long time since I did anything with molding paste, so to that end, I created a cover for my school planner, lots of fun.

Just had to finish with a picture of my hanging basket. It's spread is over 24" wide, trails to the ground and has flowered all summer long.