Tuesday, 30 December 2008

Bleugh!

Well, we had a lovely time at the panto. we laughed we shouted. It was great fun.

Unfortunately on Christmas day, my poor little girl was ill. We gave her calpol and she seemed to buck up. I thought it was just a bad cold. However, on the Saturday, she told me her ear really hurt and I looked and it was oozing! I rang the local doctor, was told there was an 4 hour wait just for a ring back.
I did ring the local drop in centre and I was told there was a 3 hour wait. I could not take my poor little girl out to wait for probably over 3 hours.

11 hours after I rang, at 11pm, the doctor rang (sounding exhausted bless him). I made an appointment for the next day. We went to the doctors, the surgery was full of lots of unwell people and many of them children. We had an hour wait.

My girl has a chest infection and ear infection. In fact the ear drum had burst. So she is now on antibiotics.

It is now Tuesday and I am happy to say that she is nearly back to her normal cheeky, chatty self.

Wednesday, 24 December 2008

Merry Christmas!

Merry Christmas everyone!
It is now Christmas eve and in a short while, my daughter and I are on our way to the pantomime. She will look beautiful in her red dress, sparkly red tights and gold shoes.

There are two additions to our tree decorations this year. One is a lovely butterfly from the lovely TwinklySpangle. It came with a gift I bought for my niece. The other one is a wonderful felt Christmas pudding made for us by our friend Denise, from Cloudberry Skies. Isn’t it lovely? I know what she should be making lots of in time for next Christmas
This morning my girl drew a picture of a reindeer, Rudolf of course. He is so sweet that I wanted to share it with you.











Friday, 12 December 2008

It has been an odd week.
After the sewing and knitting for WeMake, it all seems a bit flat this week. Add to that a unwell child off from school...I haven’t had a chance to make anything and the light has been so bad that any photos I take of things to list, are coming out badly.

I had a lovely time at WeMake Christmas. It was really good to see everyone and their lovely stalls. It gave me ideas for next time. I had a panic to get all my labelling done, and the printer gave up! I made a few sales so I was happy.

My stall looked rather nice and colourful. Next time I will have rather less on it, I think. But thanks to my wonderful partner for acquiring the display stuff (even if it was last minute i.e. Friday evening, the night before!).


Sales made me happy, but I was even happier after eating the simply divine cakes that were for sale by the wonderful, superlative, edible, Scrumblicious. Simply the best cakes I have ever tasted. And I have tasted a few!!

Time to sit back and make a plan for next year. I want to develop my shop on etsy and folksy, find other places to sell and other craft fairs. Which is proving a pain. They are either expensive, or for 2 or 3 days which would be ok if I didn’t have a job to go to! I have probably been spoilt for ever, by the wonderful organisation behind WeMake.

But if you know of any craft fairs in my area, please let me know!

Wednesday, 3 December 2008

Work in Progress


This is the state of our table just before I left for work this afternoon. I had sewn the zips onto the fabric that I cut out yesterday. Didn't have time to do the seams so I have put them on top of my lovely machine to await for another sewing morning on Thursday.
On the right are some Dorset buttons that have been glued onto hair snaps and are setting. Also some belt buckles awaiting the rest of the belt which is cut out and needs sewing!

Talking of work in progress...here is a photo of our cat asleep on the fire. It was on so she was lovely and warm. As you can see we haven't finished the fire surround. Work in progress..been like that for 5 years!!
At least I have made a start on the labels for my products. Just need to finish the products now!

Tuesday, 2 December 2008

Still here..

Just to reassure you that I am still here knitting and sewing away.
Been ages since my last post. But it is because I have been sewing and knitting away!! (or rather not 'away' but right here in my lounge).
This morning I cut out the fabric and interfacing and lining for lots more purses and some bigger ones too.
Last night I finished knitting a scarf that fastens with a dorset button (I know!).

So before Saturday and the great WeMake Christmas, I need to:
sew in zips and do seam son all purses and bags;
finish any knitting and sew in all ends;
make more Dorset buttons and glue some on hair snaps;
put labels on everything;
find white sheet for stall;
cry with fear and excitement!

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Sewing and sewing...

As you know I have my very first craft fair coming up.. WeMake Christmas on 6th December. So I am sewing and knitting and sewing in order to have as much stock as possible.
Last week was knitting week, this week is supposed to be sewing week.
I did a bit of knitting in the evening, and might continue that way.

But this morning, after a period where the icy grip of fear grabbed at my backbone, I soldiered on and made some purses. The reason I have such a fear, is of course the fear of failure. I have known this feeling a long time, but somehow manage to shove it out the way and carry on.

I made 6 purses, rather successfully I must say.

More tomorrow.




Tuesday, 18 November 2008

All better now.

We are all well now.
I am busy sewing and making building up my stock levels for WeMake Christmas.

If you want to see have a look at my flickr page
http://www.flickr.com/photos/bigbluebed/sets/72157602898474284/

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Not a well Frog

'Not a well frog' was something a phrase my brother came home with, after one of his many merchant navy trips. I think there was a little puppet on board a cruise ship (entertaining not having a holiday), and it was his catchphrase. So of course the family started to use it.

Well, anyway, I have not been a well frog. My daughter was unwell and then me. Flu type thingy.
But now I am better. And yesterday I made 3 purses, and one hat. Today I unpicked one hat and made another!

Thursday, 30 October 2008

New Bracelet

Even though they take ages to make, I really love making Dorset Buttons. And recently I had the idea of putting them together into a bracelet.

It took quite a while to do as I was linking the rings as I went, but I am rather pleased with the outcome.

Saturday, 25 October 2008

We Make London Christmas Fair

You will be able to see my work and buy lots of gorgeous things at the We Make Christmas fair. This will be my first craft fair so I am very excited.

So don't do any Christmas shopping until then. Come along as there will be lots of really gifted crafts people selling their pieces.


when: SATURDAY 6th DECEMBER 2008, 11am- 5pm


where: The American Church,
79a Tottenham Court Road,
W1T 5TD

Nearest tube: Goodge Street

See the
We Make London blog for more details.

I have been tagged...

Drum roll please......

I have been tagged by British Cream Tea

The rules are as follows:

1. Link to your tagger and list all these rules in your blog.
2. Share 7 facts about yourself on your blog, some random, some weird.
3. Tag 7 people at the end of your post by including links to their blogs.
4. Let them know they have been tagged by leaving a comment on their blogs.

This is hard. I am so 'normal' can I think of 7 interesting things?

1. My daughter has more make-up than me (she is 5).

2. I use an 1915 Singer sewing machine in my work.

3. I love detective novels of the 'golden' age - Agatha Christie, Ngaio Marsh, Margery Allingham, Dorothy L Sayers etc.

4. I have 2 tattoos.

5. My confimration name is Bernadette. And I love it.

6. We bought our daughter the High School Musical films, but really they are for us.

7. I would love to play a musical instrument such as a hurdy-gurdy.

I am going to tag the following bloggers,

cloudberryskies.blogspot.com
oldbagcrafts.blogspot.com
feltmeupdesigns.blogspot.com
kirstyfish.blogspot.com
www.myaphroditejewelry.com
laurafallulah.blogspot.com
pennydog.wordpress.com

Thursday, 16 October 2008

It is Tea Time

Have you ever been taken aback by the sheer genius of someone? Well, I have just recently.

Sit down make yourself a nice pot if tea and have a lovely cake. Because I would like to introduce you to a fellow seller on
etsy and folksy, the wonderful genius that is British Cream Tea.
British Cream Tea is a talented crafts person who makes the most wonderful and stunningly realistic felt sculptures. They are so realistic that every time I look at her shop, I salivate!

My poor partner has to put up with me gasping – ‘and she has made this, look, look!’ every few seconds.

When I get some me money I am going to buy myself a stick of rock with Southsea running though it, and maybe one day a whole plate full of cream cakes.

The most recent cake is this cream slice. Isn’t it fantastic? The crisp pastry is just waiting to be bit into, and the cream ooze out.
So go one, visit British Cream Tea at her folksy or etsy shop, you will not be disappointed.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

Crafting in the family

My little girl was 5 a couple of weeks ago.
One of her presents (from me & her daddy) was a bag kit from lovealittle.
As it is such a grey rainy day today, perfect time. She had been asking to make it for a few days so we sat down together. She told me where to put things and even did a few stitches herself. I sewed up the sides using my Singer and my little helper (or was I hers?) wound the handle.
We are both very happy with the result and she is delighted.

Friday, 3 October 2008

Dorset Buttons

I have been making these wonderful Dorset Buttons. I know I am in the wrong county, but Dorset isn't too far away!!
They are great fun to make and I am having a lovely time choosing colours.
Avaialable to buy from etsy and folksy.

Tuesday, 16 September 2008

Birthday Buys 2

More birthday buys...



(4) An exquisite little pouch from Little Cat. This is the perfect size to pop your lipstick in and take out. But I use it to put my special jewellery in.



(5) Pink Fuzzy Balls earrings from Hedgelands Glass Lass. Aren't these wonderful? They are great fun to wear.




(6) Sew a Go-Go t-shirt from
Moxie Madness. A fantastic t-shirt which is perfect for sewers like me, who still have and lovingly use the old sewing machines.


(7) Bombay Bride earrings from My Aphrodite. These are so delicate and pretty. I love dangly earrings as they make you want to dance when wearing them.


(8) Owl Print T-shirt from One Finch . Another of the t-shirts that I wear all the time. I love it and have never seen one like it in my part of the world.

Well, as you can see, I had a wonderful time and bought myself some gorgeous items.

Birthday Buys

My birthday was ages ago (so it seems) at the end of June and I have finally got around to telling you about my purchases.

I was given money and I put this into my paypal account in order to buy off etsy. I had a wonderful time having a good look through the many shops and deciding what I could treat myself to.
So here we have it..these are my buys:



(1) This is a gorgeous bag charm from
Lazy Giraffe


(2) This Asyla top from
Abi Bansal Design As it is a bespoke top it is so comfortable. I love wearing it and feel rather wonderful as I walk down the street.



(3) Target earrings from Snapdragon Beads . Very modish!!

Sunday, 31 August 2008

It Worked!

I had an idea for a scarf. I drew up the pattern on a chart and knitted it and hooray, it worked.
Here it is my lovely cream scarf.

It is knitted out of a lovely cotton yarn so it very soft.

The writing on it is 'Mine all Mine'.

Saturday, 19 July 2008

Day2Day Friday

We bought Mary a rug for her bedroom. It is pink (surprise) and has a hopscotch design on. She decided she wanted it in the lounge instead -more room to hopscotch.

For my day2day yesterday (Friday) I took a photo of our cat, Maisy sitting on the rug. I had taken a close-up but rather liked the one with her sitting on number 10, with other numbers in the foreground.


Friday, 18 July 2008

100 Books

The Big Read says that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they've printed.
Here's how it works.
1) Look at the list and bold those you have read.
2) Italicize those you intend to read.
3) Underline the books you LOVE, and strikeout the books you read but didn't like.
4) Reprint this list so we can try and track down these people who've read only 6 or less and make them read.
1. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen
2. The Lord of the Rings - JRR Tolkien
3. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte
4. The Harry Potter Series JK Rowling
5. To Kill a Mockingbird - Harper Lee
6. The Bible

7. Wuthering Heights - Emily Bronte
8. Nineteen Eighty Four - George Orwell
9. His Dark Materials - Philip Pullman
10. Great Expectations - Charles Dickens

11. Little Women - Louisa M Alcott
12. Tess of the D'Urbervilles - Thomas Hardy
13. Catch 22 - Joseph Heller
14. Complete Works of Shakespeare
15. Rebecca - Daphne Du Maurier
16. The Hobbit - JRR Tolkien
17. Birdsong - Sebastian Faulks
18. Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger
19. The Time Traveller's Wife - Audrey Niffenegger
20. Middlemarch - George Eliot
21. Gone With The Wind - Margaret Mitchell
22. The Great Gatsby - F Scott Fitzgerald
23. Bleak House - Charles Dickens
24. War and Peace - Leo Tolstoy
25. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy - Douglas Adams
26. Brideshead Revisited - Evelyn Waugh .
27. Crime and Punishment - Fyodor Dostoyevsky
28. Grapes of Wrath - John Steinbeck
29. Alice in Wonderland - Lewis Carroll
30. The Wind in the Willows - Kenneth Grahame
31. Anna Karenina - Leo Tolstoy
32. David Copperfield - Charles Dickens
33. Chronicles of Narnia - CS Lewis
34. Emma - Jane Austen .
35. Persuasion - Jane Austen
36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe - CS Lewis
37. The Kite Runner - Khaled Hosseini
38. Captain Corelli's Mandolin - Louis De Bernieres
39. Memoirs of a Geisha - Arthur Golden
40. Winnie the Pooh - AA Milne
41. Animal Farm - George Orwell
42. The Da Vinci Code - Dan Brown
43. One Hundred Years of Solitude - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney - John Irving
45. The Woman in White - Wilkie Collins
46. Anne of Green Gables - LM Montgomery
47. Far From The Madding Crowd - Thomas Hardy
48. The Handmaid's Tale - Margaret Atwood
49. Lord of the Flies - William Golding
50. Atonement - Ian McEwan .
51. Life of Pi - Yann Martel
52. Dune - Frank Herbert
53. Cold Comfort Farm - Stella Gibbons
54. Sense and Sensibility - Jane Austen
55. A Suitable Boy - Vikram Seth
56. The Shadow of the Wind - Carlos Ruiz Zafon
57. A Tale Of Two Cities - Charles Dickens
58. Brave New World - Aldous Huxley
59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time - Mark Haddon
60. Love In The Time Of Cholera - Gabriel Garcia Marquez
61. Of Mice and Men - John Steinbeck
62. Lolita - Vladimir Nabokov Nabokov
63. The Secret History - Donna Tartt
64. The Lovely Bones - Alice Sebold
65. Count of Monte Cristo - Alexandre Dumas
66. On The Road - Jack Kerouac
67. Jude the Obscure - Thomas Hardy
68. Bridget Jones' Diary - Helen Fielding
69. Midnight's Children - Salman Rushdie
70. Moby Dick - Herman Melville
71. Oliver Twist - Charles Dickens
72. Dracula - Bram Stoker
73. The Secret Garden - Frances Hodgson Burnett
74. Notes From A Small Island - Bill Bryson
75. Ulysses - James Joyce
76. The Bell Jar - Sylvia Plath
77. Swallows and Amazons - Arthur Ransome
78. Germinal - Emile Zola
79. Vanity Fair - William Makepeace Thackeray
80. Possession - AS Byatt
81. A Christmas Carol - Charles Dickens
82. Cloud Atlas - David Mitchell
83. The Color Purple - Alice Walker
84. The Remains of the Day - Kazuo Ishiguro
85. Madame Bovary - Gustave Flaubert
86. A Fine Balance - Rohinton Mistry .
87. Charlotte's Web - EB White
88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven - Mitch Albom
89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes - Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
90. The Faraway Tree Collection - Enid Blyton
91. Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad
92. The Little Prince - Antoine De Saint-Exupery
93. The Wasp Factory - Iain Banks
94. Watership Down. Richard Adams
95. A Confederacy of Dunces - John Kennedy Toole
96. A Town Like Alice - Nevil Shute
97. The Three Musketeers - Alexandre Dumas
98. Hamlet - William Shakespeare
99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory - Roald Dahl
100. Les Miserables - Victor Hugo
If I have counted correctly, I have read 55 of the list. So that is not bad - more than half. I was pleased to see Enid Blyton's Faraway Tree collection as I loved these as a child. I must get a copy for my daughter.
Many thanks to Sallers where I found this list; Made By Melissa where Sallers found it and A Cozy Life for originally putting this on their blogs.

Thursday, 17 July 2008

Mary Mary Quite Contrary!!


My daughter Mary is obsessed with money and make-up.

But the scary thing is she is only 4!

She wants money so she can buy magazines. You know the ones which come with a free toy. She likes it especially if it has a lip gloss or similar with it. Aaagh!! I am now restricting her use of make-up. It is stupid, she is 4. This shouldn't be happening now!

I know it is all just part of dressing up to her, like putting on her Cinderella dress. I really don't want to make a big thing of it but it is a bit embarrassing when she asks her 3 year old nursery school friend if she has any make-up (in front of the other mothers).

Maybe I should just let her play with it. After all it is only very light pink colours.

The other morning I woke up and Mary came to see me. 'Your hair looks nice' I said. And it did. Mary has that sort of hair that just looks great even if it isn't brushed. She has that sort of hippy chic look then. Well, this time it turns out she has been doing a bit of trimming during the night. She had cut the sides.

Her grandmother remarked on her hair today. She didn't realise Mary had done it herself.

I think I might have a hairdresser in the family which is good.

The picture is my photo for the flickr group Self Portrait Thursday.



Tuesday, 15 July 2008

Day2Day & Challenge

I missed out on the day2day yesterday as I had a bad headache. I had put it off until the evening but then did not feel well enough! There is a lesson - never put of for another time what you can do right away!!

Here it is for today

Each month the UK Etsy group put forward a challenge for anyone who wants to submit a piece of work. I thought I would have a go. The challenge for July is Mushrooms. I have been making curved purses for a while. They are a lovely shape and just the right size to carry your money and also your cards, and then pop the purse in your pocket or bag. I also wanted to do a bit of embroidery again. So I combined the two and here it is:


The lining of the purse is the fabric it is on, and it does up with a pink zip. I enjoyed making it. It was dark when I took the photo so I might try again in the daylight tomorrow.

Sunday, 13 July 2008

Day2Day on flickr

I have joined a group called Day2Day on flickr. The aim is to take a photo each day for 5 days that show the beauty of ordinary things.

Due to my lack of brains, I haven't managed to do a whole 5 days in a row. But from tomorrow not only do I intend to keep up with this but also devote more time to this poorly neglected blog.

This is the last photo I took for Day2Day



Monday, 23 June 2008

Blog Interview

Recently the lovely Sallers interviewed me for her blog.
See the results here

I had great fun thinking of the answers and my purses and dog tags look lovely on her blog.

Thank you Sallers.

Thursday, 12 June 2008

New Ventures

Well it seems ages since I blogged.
I have been trying new products and new places to sell my work.

I have branched off into pets and now make customised discs for dog collars. These can have the dog type picture, and/or dog name and owner's telephone number.

I am now also selling at DaWanda which is a European based site.
So I look forward to seeing how it all goes.

Saturday, 17 May 2008

Saturday, 26 April 2008

We don't need plastic bags.



I have a new Treasury West on etsy. Check it out here.
A treasury is where people on etsy choose some of their favourite items from other seller, usually linked to a theme.
I chose bags as I love them and they are so useful. Don't take the supermarkets plastic bags buy a fabric reusable one instead.

New avatar on etsy

I read a post in the forum on etsy, from Divine Comforts. I replied and she kindly wonderfully made me a new avatar. Here it is. It makes me think of wide, open creative possibilities.
Check out her shop as she has some lovely pieces.

Another seller who has a gorgeous shop is Art Mind. Amongst her pieces are sumptuous felted necklaces. I want one (or two as they come in various colours).

Friday, 11 April 2008

May I Introduce you to...

I thought that I would introduce a new feature and that is where I mention some of my favourite sellers on etsy and beyond.
First of all is a friend who has recently opened an etsy shop - Cloudberry Skies. She makes and sells bags.

It has been ages since I made anything. I did recently list two items of vintage clothing and they sold. At the moment I am teaching myself crochet. It is hard because I am used to knitting and I am having to get used to holding the crochet hook and yarn in a whole different way than two needles. I will persevere.
A book that I would like to recommend is 'Beginner's Guide to Crochet' by Pauline Turner, published by Search Press. It is really good and shows the basics steps and has lovely patterns for the beginner and more experienced crocheter (!) as well.

Friday, 7 March 2008

Vintage Items on etsy.


There has been, probably for ever, a hooha on etsy from some people who don't think Vintage items should be sold on etsy as its primary function is for handmade items to be bought and sold. Fair enough. However, I love seeing vintage on etsy and I think if you like handmade then you are probably the sort of person who also likes vintage.

Anyway I have added two vintage items on my etsy shop. These are prints that I purchased years ago when I had a bookstall at a book fair. I haven't had them on the wall, and they were just gathering dust (literally). I think some clever etsy person will come up with wonderful ways of using them in their work, or just frame them and put them on the wall. I just hope that they do not cut them up.

Here are the listings http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=10065889 and http://www.etsy.com/view_listing.php?listing_id=10065020.

They are original illustrations from newspapers. One from 1925 and one from 1913.

Thursday, 28 February 2008

Back from Holiday


We had a wonderful holiday in Austria. A bit sad to be back home. Oh well...

Still I hope to be inspired by the beauty of Austria!!

On another note I am sorry to say that I am having to moderate any comments that are posted. This is due to receiving some rude links and also some that potentially contain viruses. So sorry if you make a valid comment and it takes a while to appear on this blog.

Friday, 8 February 2008

Birdy purse and Velvet Chocker



This week I mastered sewing a zip into a purse thanks to this tutorial



I also had given to me, by my lovely sister Claire, a pair of brand new green velvet trousers which were too small. I am going to make a sumptious purse out of them, but first I made this choker.


We visited a local furnishing shop and bought some gorgous remnants. I am going to make a bag out of mine. Big enough to be handluggage on a plane but it will not be ready for our skiing holiday next Saturday.


We are all off to Austria. I made Claire a cowl and need to make one for Mary and me. And maybe also a hat for me. It depends on how much fleece I have left. I would like to find a supplier of recycled fleece. It can be made out of plastic bags.

Must get on with the cowls. I will post a photo soon.

Saturday, 19 January 2008

One more present finished.

Hooray! I have finally finished my sister's present. I was knitting her a scarf made of a lovely grey cotton with beads and a flower design. I have finished it and it is in the post to her.
I really enjoyed making it despite having to unpick the flower design several times. But bother I forgot to take a photo.
My mother's birthday next. I asked her what she wanted that I could make (limited selection, I know!). She wants a bag, that she can wear under her jacket to keep it safe, that she can pop her passport and travel documents in, which is soft so she doesn't get hurt if she falls on it (we are going skiing). So I have started the design and I am very excited about it.
When I have finished I must make some more things for etsy. I had a bit of a disappointment last week. Etsy said that I had sold the little red flower brooch. Yes! I thought my first sale but unfortunately they never paid and I never heard anything from the buyer despite giving them time and sending messages. Oh well better luck next time.