Monday, 16 January 2012

A Time to Collect Thoughts...and Inspiration

There's something about a new year that always gets me thinking about all sorts, from the new adventures I'd like to go on, to the books I'd like to read and the things I'd like to make. It's the same every year (and not just for me I'm sure!) I suppose it's the first chance we all get to stop and collect our thoughts after the excitement and busy-ness of the festive season. I'm engrossed in the books I had for Christmas (amongst them Kirstie Allsop's Craft and Cath Kidston's Stitch) as well as the magazine's that have been piled up until I have a spare moment to flick through them. I'm also enjoying walks in the park, watching Little Treasure grow and change before my eyes and the joy of feeding ducks. There's so much to be inspired by!

I thought I'd share some of my ramblings, thoughts and things to inspire here...illustrated with photos I took at the last two Vintage and Handmade Fairs in Chipping Sodbury.

I'm currently having a love affair with patchwork. My first ever textile creation at school was an English pieced patchwork cushion that was made from Laura Ashley ready-cut patchwork pieces (does anyone else remember those?!) and took me a whole term to make. I can remember feeling so proud when it was finished...wobbly stitches and all! I think this is where the seed was sewn (sorry, no pun intended) for what has now become my favourite sewing pastime.

I'm now making a patchwork quilt (all sewn by hand, eek!) out of Mr Treasure's old shirts. It seemed like such a waste to throw them away when it was only the collarts and cuffs that had gone threadbare, so I'm putting my best 'make do and mend' foot forward and creating something new from them for posterity. It's nowhere near as fancy as this gorgeous quilt here, but I'm hoping it'll turn out alright once it's finished (keeping everything crossed!)


Suffolks Puffs are so joyous! They can be made into all sorts, or merely kept safely in a pretty box, to be taken out and admired every now and again.


Donna Flower

Donna's stall is always a feast for the eyes. Over the years I've bought all sorts of fabric treasures from Donna and I think this year I need to be brave enough to just get on and enjoy using some of the bigger pieces I've been stashing away in my fabric drawer.

Donna Flower

Lovely, lovely, lovely! So many gorgeous colours and patterns. I should really have a good sort of my own fabric stash, find something I fancy making and then crack on with it. I will...I really will!

Donna Flower

I just love buttons! There's something fabulous about getting lost in the simple pleasure of sorting through a button jar. I think having a bit of time for what could be categorised as 'frivolous' is important. It's all about taking time out for the small things.

Canvas and Cloth

I love vintage reels of thread, especially Sylko ones, which come in such a wonderful array of colours with fabulously evocative names. I think the threads in this photo look great together. My friend Kathleen is an absolute whizz at putting together the most wonderful combinations of colours in her work. I think this year I will try being bolder in my colour choices in all aspects of life!

Hen's Teeth

If there was a 'Bestest Designer in the Whole Wide World and Bringer of Great Joy' award, it would absolutely have to go to Viv. Her creations make me smile from ear to ear whenever I see them. I've got a little collection of Viv's brooches and purses, as well as one of her birdy needlecases and I just love them all! Viv's just announced that she's going to start running workshops - hoorah, hoorah, hoorah!

Sallie and James Ead

The Devil Makes Work

The Devil Makes Work

Hoorah for tweed! I think Woo's owls are rather fabulous.

There's something wonderful about rummaging for treasure. It's all about the thrill of the chase and the thought that in the next box, drawer or corner could be lurking something fabulous just waiting to be discovered. Treasure seeking is certainly high on my 2012 'to do' list!

Cowboys and Custard

Catching up with old friends and making news ones...definitely good for the soul.

Canvas and Cloth

With this cold weather we're having at the moment, it's definitely a good excuse to curl up in the warm with books, Blogland and a mug of hot chocolate!

Stay warm everyone...and I hope you find much to be inspired by in 2012!

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Hello 2012, Hello Blogland Once More!

Happy new year everyone! I hope you've all had a fabulous festive season.

Oh, how I've missed blogging! Can it really have been so long since I last tapped out a post? Where on earth does the time go? In my case, it's been taken up with the fun and rather time-consuming business of looking after a little one (who has now learnt to crawl and is busily trying to pull herself up on to her feet)! Even though being a mum is the best job in the world I've missed being part of Blogland - not only writing my own posts but also reading about everyone else's adventures. With the dawning of 2012 came a promise to myself that I'd try to carve out a bit of regular time when I could indulge in a spot of blogging. So, here I am...back in Blogland and hoping that you'll pop by and say "hello" once more.

It was such a gloriously sunny morning on Friday that Little Treasure and I braved the slightly crisp January air and went to the park. It's a popular little haven in amongst suburbia and there were lots of other little folk there enjoying the sunshine too.

I love this 'bench'. It's made from a tree trunk and has all sorts of creatures carved into it.

New things often spring up in the park and the latest things we've spotted are some rather lovely sculptures (this being one of them). They fit in perfectly next to the nature pond. A bit of trivia for you - for those who remember the TV series 'Butterflies' (starring Wendy Craig), this pond is the one she used to sit by in the programme (as it was filmed in our neck of the woods)!

Little Treasure loves seeing the ducks and gets very excited whenever we get near the duck pond. I was always asking my parents if we could go and feed our local ducks when I was little and I have a funny feeling Little Treasure won't be any different!

I loved the way the light caught the leaves. Such a lovely rich colour.

Two of Little Treasure's beloved ducks happily soaking up the sun.

After all the excitement of the sun, leaves and duck pond, Little Treasure couldn't keep her eyes open and drifted off to the sounds of quacking ducks splashing about on their pond. Little folk are so peaceful when they're asleep, aren't they?!