A few posts back I was lucky enough to have been given a blog award, and the proviso was that I would post about the things I love. Well, the problem has been deciding what to leave out. A good problem, but still....
I do hope that last one doesn't sound too precious; but it's always good to appreciate life when it is good. We've all been in the other place.
In the oven now - Norwegian Cinnamon Buns. The smell throughout the house is delicious, and I'm sure they'll taste heavenly, but it's a Nigella recipe, so the quantities are, somewhat approximate. Hey ho.
Coffee this afternoon should be good.
Yes, I know they're everywhere, and yes, I know Jan Constantine, does them very well, but hey ho, here are mine. I've had the ribbon for almost a year (from a cake shop - where else?) but couldn't quite find the right project for it. Then I did.
The rest of the preparations for Sunday - when I'll be at Duncombe Park - are going along quite steadily, but do you find that the nearer you get to the date of a fair or market, then the more ideas you have for things to make? No? Ach well, it's just me then. So instead of just making sure that everything is sorted and labelled, I decided to try making a fabric covered padded hanger:
How easy was that! Of course, it was then a case of finding some more fabrics to cover more, so off I went. Hmmm. Found a great fabric place, but oh! the prices. Had to buy something, but will go back if I'm looking for fabrics for the house. Which will be very soon, let's face it, as I want to redecorate one of the bedrooms.
These last few pictures are of the china and glass that came my way last Saturday; putting them all together on the windowsill to be photographed made me realise how colourful they are.
And sometimes the way a flower fades when it dries out is just beautiful:
A pretty poor start to the day; a headache and a general 'yeuch' feeling. Modern medication is a joy though, so soon well enough to go outside and collect some bits and pieces of autumn, and then weave them together into an autumn wreath. Sheer joy.
While out there looking for these, I also remembered that very soon I would be needing some sprays of silvered berries. But the last thing I want are artificial ones, so when I saw these:
I figured they'd be perfect covered in silverleaf. Already thinking of Christmas, and one reason for that is that a pair of tickets have arrived for the Country Living Christmas Fair inGlasgow. I so enjoyed the London one last year with my daughter in law, and I'm sure this one will be a pleasure too. So thankyou very much to the lovely Caroline of Twice for sending the tickets. (I'm very, very lucky as it was Karon of Dreamacres who sent the tickets for last year in her giveaway.)
This afternoon saw the fronts of two union jack cushions made, and also a first - fabric covered padded hangers. Haven't taken photo's of those yet (nor the fantastic china and glass goodies from the weekend - sorry Maureen) but will tomorrow, ready for the next post.
So, not a bad day after all.
What is it with blogging? This time last year, this blog was more than just 'something I did', it was a lifeline and, more importantly, a way to connect to like-minded people and enjoy their company.
Of course, it still is very much the latter, but the former? Well, maybe not so much, and because of that I don't feel that it has received as much of my attention lately as it needs. What really needs to happen is for me to return to the original concept; creating a secure place for me to air thoughts, ideas and record flowers and makes. Is that too much thought behind such a thing as a blog?
Last Saturday's farmers market was a slow day, achingly so at times, but there was still a profit, and more wonderful connections. You know those connections are real when people who've bought from you return, not only to buy more, but also to present you with some of their finds. Beautiful teacups, demitasses, glass bowls, all for making more candles. One customer even told another stall holder about the teacup candles, and how he had some coffee cups on his stall which would be perfect. So he trotted on over to show me. And they were perfect.
This bag is a Jane Market Bag and has been a joy to make; in fact there are three, all very similar, made as presents for Australian cousins who took it in turns to look after the boy on his Summer Adventure.
And this bag is a slight variation on another made in the same fabric; I liked them, but afterwards felt they needed a bit more zing, so added a different fabric for the inner pocket and the inner side of the strap. I like them even more now.
Another thing, about this blog stuff: if you've left a comment lately and I've not got back to you, please accept my apologies. Similarly if you've commented and I've sent you two or more replies.
Must do better.
This award is from Maureen and very welcome. We've talked in the past about such awards, but have decided to participate this time. The award comes with the proviso that it be passed on and that you list ten things you love. Hmmm. Well, I love all the blogs I read, whether they're on the blogroll at the side, in my favourites or on others' blogrolls. So if you'd like to join in, then please do. The ten items will need thinking about so that will be later.
I was lucky enough to be asked to do a couple of commissions at the last market I did, a pair of bags and a trio of cushions. The cushions were tricky becuse the skirt they came from was cut on the bias. The bags were from a designer fabric (in the sense that it's not freely available to the general public) and is in a gorgeous shade of red.
A farmers' market tomorrow at Tynemouth, and for the first time ever, I'm not sitting at the sewing machine until late at night finishing things off. May be getting into the swing of things at last.
Oh, and the candles? In the coloured stem glasses and scented with Green African Musk from www.begin-again.co.uk. Delicious.
And just what is going on with typepad? I've written out this post FIVE times now, and the only way to complete it, is to leave the pictures at the end.
Yesterday was the day I ventured back up to the allotment. And boy! was I repaid for my efforts.
The weather here has been foul for much of the past couple of weeks, so I wasn't surprised to see the cutting patch looking...... dishevelled, shall we say.
But hardy flowers are not just so against the frost. They may be beaten to the gound by the wind and rain, but still they flower. In abundance.
To be truthful, though, the sweet peas, are too far gone, but there are lots of seeds to gather for next year. And the ammi was nowhere to be seen.
Those that flourished, did so with style, and jewel-like colours. The dahlias and the gladioli are too far-fetched, really. Where does that depth of colour come from? And those shapes? You couldn't make them up.
So now, feeling very pleased with myself for making it up to the allotment in the first place, I brought home dahlias, gladioli, asters (the green ones at the top of the post), euphorbia, verbena these gorgeous russet coloured cone flowers. And made this:
Last week, because of the horrid rain and wind, I bought some flowers from a local florist. Chrysanthemum, gerbera and agapanthus. I honestly feel like throwing them out, even though they're not yet finished.
Compared to the ones grown in my own garden or cutting patch, they seem lifeless. These hydrangeas are garden grown, pure and simple. And very much full of life.
They may well be speckled by the rain, and the colours are not perfect, but they are beautiful, and a real pleasure to bring into the house.
The links for Fiona's wonderful oils and shea butter are now to hand so will be added to the side bars. (At last!)
Yesterday was one of those days...
when beautiful treasures...
seemed to appear...
at every turn.
The colourful glasses and the pearly cups were from a favourite charity shop (where they sell a good mix of things, but nothing is over-priced - another along the same street regularly asks a small fortune for its goods, and of course they always have the same stock). The two pearly cups were simply sitting there by themselves, left behind when someone had bought the rest of the teaset, and the colour stemmed glasses shouted out to me as soon as I entered the shop.
And the rest? The two big boxes of china? Waiting for me when I got home; a present from a friend who'd been to a local market which has a car boot section. Cost? I'm to pay for the next round of coffee and cake.
Some pretty special friend, eh?
Well, it's been a busy couple of weeks, with lots of travelling, lots of beautiful granddaughters, some weed pulling and a market. Mmmm. Quite nice to sit and sew for a few days I think.
Work reared its ugly head in a couple of guises this past week; paid work for others, I mean. One was going back to work for the company I left last year (new store opening just a few miles from where I live) and the other was a role I've not done before, but everyone says to go for it. Well, not actually everyone, just BB. I didn't consider the store job for more than 2 seconds, but the second did get more consideration. But no. That time has gone and now it's time for me to do things I really want to do; sew, grow, make, sell. Tynemouth on Sunday just reinforced my resolve. I met more wonderful people and managed to sell and make a profit. Win, win.
One of those was a lovely lady called Fiona, who was selling essential oils etc. Very fortuitous as I had stopped adding fragrance to the teacup candles; the scent I had been using was in the form of wax, which is shaved into the melting wax. Not a good smell. Nasty after smell. But Fiona let me go through her range of oils and eventually I decided on Green African Musk which is just gorgeous. Can't wait to try it out in the candles, but I've already added some to the sample of Shea Butter from Fiona and it makes the most wonderful smelling handcream ever. Thank you Fiona.
(ps - Haven't got Fiona's details to hand, but will add links etc in later.)
Edit: Fiona's oils etc is the link to this lovely site.
So all in all, this is how life feels just now; not just physically with the lovely scented handcream, but also life in general. Let's face it, none of us knows how long such lovely moments last, so I'm making the most of this time Right Now.
The other great thing that happened at Sunday's market, was 2 commissions; one planned from the Farmers' Market - some beautiful skirts to be made into cushion covers, which will be very special as their owner has embellished the skirts herself with wonderful beading, and another lady who arrived at the stall to buy one of the bags. As we talked she mentioned how she couldn't sew herself but she had seen some lovely fabric at the other side of the market which would make a wonderful bag. I asked if she'd like me to make it up for her, she ran off, bought the fabric, and was back in the space of 2 minutes. It's a gorgeous red and creamy white fabric, very strong cotton linen, so will be perfect for both a tote and a bag. I'll add photo's of everything once made up and sent off to their owners. Shame to spoil their surprise.
Will be back later today to update Fiona's details.
By the way, thank you to everyone who took the time to think about the teacup scenario; of course you're all right. After I've paid the right price at the charity shop, then it's ok to use that item for something else and to charge for all the work that goes into making the candle - not just the wax part. A lady was buying a couple on Sunday and she mentioned that she'd have to pack them very carefully for her journey; thinking she she was going back down south, I offered more tissue paper to help. But no, they would need lots of tape, bubble wrap etc. They're on their way to Canada.