Wednesday, 24 November 2010

Sunshine on a rainy day..

  Two lots of flowers.

Made by Miss Chatterbox 

and Pickle.

Just for me.
(It makes me smile each time I see them...)

Oh, and just to let you know - another 3 posts will be my 100th! I'll be holding a give-away, so keep watching!

Monday, 22 November 2010

Stitch, by Cath Kidston : A Book review

I was very excited last week when this book plopped through the letter box. It had been on my Amazon wish list for ages and when the opportunity arose to review it, I jumped at the chance!
As I already own both ‘Sew’ and ‘Make’ (disappointed with one, loved the other!) and am a complete stitching novice, I was intrigued as to how I would rate this book.  I’m glad to say that it lived up to my expectations and is probably my favourite book of the three.

As regular readers of this blog may know, needlepoint and cross-stitch are not crafts that I would usually indulge in and so I found the introduction section particularly useful, clearly explaining the various stitches and techniques that would be needed for the projects. I was glad to see that the projects didn't stay at the beginner level though, but were graded through to more difficult or longer term projects such as the rug and seat cover.

Although there is a fair spread of projects in the book I did find the range slightly limited - there were a lot of cushions and pouches of various kinds, (and does anyone ever use a candle shade?!). I was particularly drawn to the use of  soluble canvas to embroider designs onto clothes and other objects and am wondering if I can maybe use some of the needlepoint ideas as cross stitch designs in this way too. I am also thinking of possibly using some of the designs on a smaller scale to make pictures with.

Of all the projects included within the book, my favourites by far are the Union Jack designs and I can’t wait to start the cushion. I do however,  also want to make the Electric Flowers cushion, the Stripe rug, the pincushion, the gadget case....

For those crafters who are not so keen on Cath’s instantly recognisable florals, don’t worry!  There are plenty of her other designs included in the book and it would not be so difficult to adapt these to fit other projects.

Though the variety of projects seemed a little limited to me, the book does contain a lot of ideas and  designs that could be used as a starting point for other gifts to make for yourself or others. As a long time lover of Cath Kidston's designs and products, I thought the book itself was wonderfully photographed and whether you buy it for yourself or for someone else,  is a real addition for any Cath Kidston fans out there. Would I recommend it?  Definitely.

Saturday, 13 November 2010

Sometimes it's the small things...

Today I walked into my local newsagents and found a copy of Country Living tucked away at the back of a shelf, hidden behind all the Dutch home magazines. It was a small thing, but it really cheered me up.

Somehow this other magazine managed to jump into my basket too, and so I spent a lovely quiet hour or so at home with a coffee, reading and wishing just a tiny bit that I was able to go to the Country Living Christmas Fayre as I would usually be doing about now.

If I'm really honest, I'm struggling at the moment. The initial excitement and euphoria of moving to another country have faded, the unpacking has long been finished and most of the first phase of redecoration which has kept me busy for so long has now been done. Reality has hit like a bulldozer and I'm feeling really homesick and lonely. I've really struggled with finding a new rhythm since the move and as you may have noticed, not much crafting has been done. On top of all this, I'm still struggling with the 'mystery illness' which began around this time last year, and no one seems to be able to tell me what the problem is, which means I have now been taking morphine for the pain since last November and am begininning to wonder if this is me now, forever.

Bleurgh!! There, that's how it really is in one big, rather-feeling-sorry-for-myself splurge. Phew. Sorry.

If you're still reading, well done. I'm sorry for being so glum. I don't want you to think it's all doom and gloom. It's not. I have so much to be thankful for and I am. It's just that sometimes it's the small things that are needed to make the day seem a little brighter..

Monday, 1 November 2010


Yesterday, we had a day out at The Efteling courtesy of two lovely friends who wanted to thank us for letting them stay while they look for their new house.

We had a super time

and the sun even decided to shine for us.

There was a small hairy moment as we gazed upon the vast car park and realised that no-one  had taken note of where we had left the car!

In the words of Pickle as we headed back, 'that  was the best day ever. Shame we have to go home'...

P.S. I don't usually put pictures of the children on the blog, but this one of Chatterbox cracks me up each time I see it!