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. 

Saturday, 1 March 2014

Happy St David's Day! Dydd Gwyl Dewi Sant Hapus!

Its a beautiful morning here in Wales and we are celebrating St David's Day - and the first day of Spring (according to the BBC Weather department anyway).  I've been fiddling about with Hama beads recently and made this heart wreath to represent daffodils - our national flower.

I can't remember where I found this cookery book from the long gone Wales Gas Board.  Published in 1957 but I just love the graphics - including the Welsh lady version of the famous Mr Therm! Here are a couple of traditional recipes from the book.

I love the illustrations so much I'll probably share a few more pages in the next few days - anyone fancy a slice of Slapsan Sir Fon (Anglesey cake)!


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