Friday, 18 April 2014

Happy Easter Everyone!

I'm wishing all my wonderful followers a VERY HAPPY EASTER.  The sun is shining, the sky is blue and I'm hoping for a walk in the beautiful Welsh countryside and lunch out today!  Make sure you find something special to do if you have time to yourself too.  I made these Scrabble and Hama bead signs for my stall last weekend but forgot to take them with me!  Oh well, they'll come in for next year.

Thursday, 17 April 2014

An Easter Af-Fair

Yet again I've been neglecting my blog - no wonder my audience as fallen away (according to bloggers statistics) but I want you, my faithful followers, to know how very much I do appreciate your visits even if there is no time to comment - and I know how hard it is to keep up with commenting on everything we see in blogland no matter how much we enjoy and admire the talent out there.

Anyway, last Saturday was my first fair of the year, Vintage in the Vale Easter Fair at Trelawnyd Memorial Hall.  Yet again Gill and her team pulled off an inspiring, creative and happy event through sheer hard work and meticulous attention to detail.  For the first time there was a professional photographer in attendance and I do hope she won't mind me using a couple of her photos here.  In all the usual last minute panic I didn't photo-record what I'd taken with me so I was delighted with her photo of my pompom Easter blooms which sold out by early afternoon. :o)  Thank you Love Luella Photography!  You can see the whole album on my facebook page should you be interested.

Here's my stall all set up and (almost!) ready to go.  Its such a friendly event and it was lovely meeting up with other lovely regular stallholders and meeting some new ones.  Here are a few to inspire you.

My lovely VIV neighbour Nia whose gorgeous shop Wish in Rhuddlan High Street is not to be missed if you are in the area. 

Emma's colourful Hobo Heart Collective stall full of reclaimed wooden delights.

The Way to Blue - Sarah's beautiful blue cyanotypes.  Don't you just love that pop of yellow from the daffodils.

Woolly wonders from Lost in the Wood - it was Laura's first time at VIV but I surely hope it wasn't the last!

And I'm not missing out all the stalls full of hard to resist vintage goodness!  I do wish I'd got round everyone with my camera but take it from me they were ALL fabulous.  The next fair is on 2nd August so plenty of time to arrange your diary if you are anywhere near the North East Wales coast this summer.  You won't regret a visit, not least for a nice sit down with tea and cake enjoying vocalist Paula Rose singing all those iconic songs from the 30s and 40s.

See you there?????

Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Vintage Finds & March Remembered

I was pleased to find this box of crochet coasters in a charity shop recently.  Now crochet coaster patterns seem quite popular in blogland and on Pinterest but they always seem rather impractical to me as they are bound to get stained in use and frequent laundering would spoil them.  So I've turned these into my favourite craft fair/gift item, scented sachets or pincushions.  I cut out hessian squares just a bit bigger than the coasters and attached them with invisible stitches.  I put some scented drawer sachets from M&S inside which were made from thick perfumed paper, then added in polyester stuffing and a button to make a pillow shape.  This has made a very practical pincushion I think as the paper stops pins and needles disappearing inside the cushion.  And for some reason the coconut scent of the paper mixed with the smell of the hessian is very pleasant.

I put together my March review scrapbook page this morning - it does seem that I've done a lot of crocheting in the last 4 weeks.  And if anyone who bought my Daffodil brooches is reading this (yes, I mean you Baukje!) and hasn't seen my Facebook page, I crocheted 77 daffodils and made £105 for my two cancer charities.  I'm happy with that but it doesn't seem much when compared to the no make-up selfie that managed to raise £8 million for cancer research in just a couple of days!!!!!  But as the saying goes (though I hate to say it myself) "every little counts"!

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Cute & Easy Crochet

I often turn to my craft books and Pinterest boards for inspiration when there's a craft fair coming up but do worry about using someone else's idea for profit - even if its with raising money for charity in mind.  I love these little purses I found in Nicki Trench's book Cute & Easy Crochet - they would be perfect for my stall, but there's that guilt feeling in the back of my mind again!

However I spied a similar comment on Nicki's facebook page and to my delight found that she has very generously given permission to sell her designs in return for a small one-off Product Selling Fee.  Yipee!  I can feel completely comfortable making these for my stall now.  I have tweeked the pattern a bit.  I found I coudn't make a neat buttonhole fastening so have changed to large press studs or magnetic fasteners.  And if the lining fabric I've chosen is a bit thin I back it with fusible interfacing to make a sturdier purse that would perfectly protect a mobile phone. 

Using odd balls of Aran yarn from my stash produces slightly random sized purses but I rather like that as different folks will want to use them for different purposes. 

Note:  There is one proviso from Nicki - you can only make up to 100 items from any one pattern.  Hmm, can't imagine that will be a problem for me! :o)

Thursday, 20 March 2014

Welcome Spring!

Outside its a bit miserable but today is officially the First Day of Spring.  Its too wet to do anything in the garden but that's a good excuse to play with a new stamp set that arrived this morning.  Its called  Easter Blessings (from Wplus9, you can find it here in the UK at Make the Day Special) but the floral bordering and corner stamps are also just right for carding up these brooches I've made with Mothers Day in mind.  The sentiment is from Garden Grace at Papertrey Ink.

I used my Boutique Accessories die from Papertrey Ink to cut the cards.  The brooches use embroidered motifs from an old dressing table mat and wool felt cut out with Limitless Layers Ovals dies also from Papertrey Ink.  I backed the motifs with fusible interfacing to stabilise the fabric and stop it fraying and stitched the layers together with embroidery silk.

And here's a real sign of Spring in my garden, the lovely Pulmonaria or Lungwort - not a pretty name but a very pretty flower.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

Down by the Riverside

There's much to do in the house and in the garden but I've been itching to go walking in the fields since the good weather arrived at the weekend.  So I skived off for an hour or so this afternoon.  The river banks have been "tidied up" by the council in this field, as you can tell by the piles of wood chippings left at regular intervals.  This has rather spoiled the footpath as although you can't see in this photo, the ugly industrial buildings and council yards along the opposite bank are much in evidence now they are no longer screened by trees and undergrowth.

These three little chaps were certainly on a mission to get from A to B as quickly as possible!  I kept overtaking them as they dallied now and then in the shallows, but in next to no time they were there again paddling away as fast as they could. 

There's nothing as spring-like and sunshiny as a Celandine - they are like little candles lighting up the hedgerows.

I love to see a ploughed field all ready for planting.  I wonder what will grow here this year.

You know its a good day when you can see the moon lit up by the sun.  Its been evident in the daytime sky for the past three days.

And the sky has been that intense blue you only get in the colder months of the year.  Worth a little frost at night don't you think!

For the rest of the week I've promised myself I'll spend all the time I can tidying up the ravages of the winter and recent storms in the garden but I'm glad I couldn't resist the call of the fields today.

And I have been a bit productive too.  These little corsage brooches I made with Mothers Day in mind.  I found the pattern in Nicki Trench's book Crochet with Flowers.  If you like Nicki's patterns as much as I do you might be interested to know she has recently started a Crochet Club.  I thought we would be getting an exclusive pattern every month and special offers on yarn etc but today I was delighted to find out we will be receiving the yarn to make this month's pattern too - a small corsage similar to this one.  There's still time to join and get the pattern and yarn yourself if you are quick.  :)

Tuesday, 4 March 2014

Remembering February

Oh dear, very late again I've created my February digital page.  These pages are really just for me to remember my year but making myself post them here does at least mean I get them done before December!  This is my third year of creating monthly review pages and I do so enjoy looking back at 2012 and 2013 that I really wish I'd started earlier - 2000, the new millenium would have been good but I can't see that happening now!

Anyway, St David's Day and the daffodil brooch project kept me very busy in the run up to 1st March and I'm very happy to report that so far I have raised about £90 for cancer charities selling my brooches.  I still have a few orders coming in so I'm carrying on through March in support of the Marie Curie Daffodil appeal.  If any of my lovely blog readers would like a brooch just leave me a comment. 


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