Thursday, 21 July 2011

My Creative Space.

Not alot of crafting going on around here - lots of puppy love and lots of visitors so all I have managed this week is to finish off some shower hats I started a while ago!
I need to get them into my Folksy and Etsy shops in an effort to drum up some business!
I have also been making/finishing off lots of small tweed items in readiness for the Pipe Band Championships mid-August. I am hoping it will be a good fit for my stuff and I am also looking forward to seeing and hearing some of the bands.
Not much to inspire here today - but over here it is a different story! Hopefully will get back on track with some proper craft content soon!!

Friday, 24 June 2011

My Creative Space

I'm a bit late with this weeks Creative Space post due to some Blogger nonsense! Problem fixed, I wanted to share a couple of handmade gifts with you.
Yesterday I was going to my friend Jean's for lunch and I wanted to take a small gift - usually I would take some wine but as it was lunch, not dinner, I decided to make some of Nigella's Sweet & Salty Chocolate Nut Crunch Bar and take that along instead. I have4 wanted to make this for ages and this was the perfect excuse. Also I am being rather frugal at the moment and this is an ideal frugal gift!
I keep all my old packaging for use in projects such as this so I chose a suitably sized box,  tissue paper recycled from a gift I had received and a piece of bias binding which was not a useful length.........
I put the tissue in the box first with a double layer of greaseproof paper on top of that and then filled the box with chocolate pieces......
I folded the paper neatly and put the top on the box using the bias binding as a bow decoration and Hey Presto! a lovely gift!
I also need a gift for my friend Laurence who will be dog sitting on Saturday while I do the Byres Road Makers Market. He has a very sweet tooth so this is a perfect gift for him too!
I made a paper 'poke' (pocket) from greaseproof paper, filled with chocolate............
and sealed up. I then wrapped with tissue paper and decorated with some wool and a recycled tag I made a while ago.
Another gift with the personal touch! I managed to get 2 x 12" circular trays of crunchy nut chocoate out of the ingredients I used so I still have 3/4 of a tray left to use as another gift.....if it lasts that long.....well one has to exercise some quality control now and again! Or maybe I should exercise some self-control!!

200gms Dark Chocolate
100gms Milk Chocolate
125gms butter
3 tablespoons  Golden Syrup
250gms salted peanuts
4 x 40gm Crunchy bars

Melt butter and Golden Syrup in pan and add all the chocolate
Put nuts and broken up Crunchy bars in a bowl
Pour melted mixture over nuts and crunchy pieces and mix
Fill foil trays with mixture and put in fridge to set
When hard break into rough pieces and ENJOY!!

Very simple to make and totally delicious - it went down a storm at the lunch!!

More creative and crafty ideas found here

Thursday, 23 June 2011

Scary Coos!

Where I live I am spoilt for choice as to where I will go for a walk - one of my favourite places is Pollok Country Park which is a 20 minute walk/5 minute drive from my flat. Early this morning I parked in my usual space and was greeted by these aviator sunglasses looking expectantly at me....
"How odd" I thought to myself. Minutes later I realised that they were the ones that have been knocking around in my car door pocket for months...they must have fallen out of the car yesterday! I love the way they have been placed like that.
I really enjoy being in the park early, probably because I quite often fantasise that the house and gardens actually belong to me - I have always done this when visiting stately homes!
 I love the river walk and Fly is obsessed with water so she loves it!
On the return leg of today's walk I decided to go a different way so that I could get a look at the Highland Cattle and calves that are resident in the park.
They looked so cute - well to me they did....

Fly wasn't so sure.....
maybe it is their smell/size? Whatever it was she was not impressed!
However she does have quite a soft spot for these gorgeous little Falabella ponies that are currently grazing on the recs (recreation grounds) opposite my flat.

They are on tour with Zippo's Circus and are here every year about this time. We have visited them every morning and evening for the past week! I first noticed them a couple of years ago as I drove past - noting how dinky they were. When I drove back in the opposite direction 3 hours later they had grown in size. I thought I was hallucinating! This went on for a couple of days until the penny dropped that there were 2 tiny ponies and 2 normal ponies of exactly the same colour who must be part of the same act that were put out to graze at different times!
Sadly when we went out for our evening walk last night they had moved on - where the Big Top was is now a muddy patch of grass being used as an overflow car park for Hampden Stadium which is hosting 'Take That' for the next 3 nights - with a prevailing wind I can sit and enjoy the gig from the comfort of my own kitchen!!

Friday, 17 June 2011

My Creative Space

Not much going on around here due to some intensive puppy training! The one thing I have managed to do is to finish the Noro Stripy Scarf that I started ages ago.
I have even sewn in all the loose ends - I can't even begin to describe how tedious it was! Many many thanks to Karen who showed me how to run both wools up the side of the scarf eliminating the need to weave in all the ends. Without her input this project would still be skulking at the bottom of my knitting basket! It is ironic that I have finished the scarf just as we are finally getting some good weather in Scotland!
The colour changes are gorgeous and it is a perfect length - looking forward to wearing it but hopefully not too soon. Noro is very expensive but I think it is worth it as the end product always looks so lovely - as my friend pointed out - it does all the work for you in terms of design!
Now I can turn my attention to the Babette Blanket - hopefully will have at least a coupke of squares to show next week.
Visit more Creative Spaces........

Sunday, 12 June 2011


My last post was about a floor cushion I had made from recycled jumpers but I must come clean - it is not a floor cushion but a doggie day-bed for my new flatmate Fly.
She is a whippet crossed with something but not sure what!
I collected her from the rehoming centre on Thursday afternoon. She has a touch of kennel cough which is making her a wee bit under the weather but that aside, she is settling in well and is very quick to learn!
It was a bit touch and go on the first night as she didn't want to sleep in her bed in the kitchen and howled so I spent a couple of hours persuading her that her wee den was a lovely place to be and eventually she went to sleep! Since then she is alot more settled and I have enjoyed 2 nights uninterrupted sleep although my day now starts significantly earlier!!

Thursday, 9 June 2011

My Creative Space

Take assorted felted jumpers......
Cut into 30cm x 30cm squares and sew together..........
Add an envelope back with velcro opening and Voila.........
one 90 cm square floor cushion! I am still to make the insert but you get the general idea. I like the colour combos - the pink bit is from one of my own jumpers and the others have been donated to me by friends. The purple is a jumper that my friend wore all through her pregnancy last winter when it was bitterly cold!
A good bit of recycling - I feel very virtuous!
Be good to yourself - make a coffee and go and visit some more Creative Spaces - lots of inspiration to be had!

Thursday, 2 June 2011

My Creative Space

Finally today, after having had the wool for this project for nearly 2 years,  I have started on what will no doubt become my new obsession.....
the Babette Blanket. I have chosen to make mine from a variety of colours of Colinette Jitterbug yarn - I like to buy British! The original pattern recommends Koigu but I have seen Babettes in every kind of yarn and colourway you can imagine and they are all delightful in their own way. I am loving the stitch definition you get with this yarn. This is the very first square - done in Elephants Daydream -
just gorgeous! I love the Colinette palette of colours and I especially love the names the colours have been given - in the top pic you can see balls of Whirly Fig, Lobster Pinch, Elephants Daydream and, my personal favourite, Salty Dog.
More Creative Spaces here.

Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Free Book!!

My friend Ness is currently Writer in Residence at the George Eliot Collection in Warwickshire and she is doing a Giveaway today so get over to her project blog desperatelyseekinggeorge and grab yourself a good read! (just ignore my nonsensical rambling in the comments bit!!!)

Could I ask the following to email me their addresses so I can send their mirrors?
Petit Filoux

Many thanks! I am not sure that if you reply to a posted comment it actually goes to the commenter? Am I being stupid or can you just click reply and get through to the person via nore-ply? Still new to blogger so still trying to suss it out!

Monday, 30 May 2011

Happy Monday!

I am delighted to report that last week ended on a considerably better note than it began and so I begin this week with renewed optimism!
On Tuesday I acted as 'plumbers mate' to a friend of mine who came and rehung the radiator that had fallen off the wall in the middle of the night (did I mention that? Did I also mention that after a long discussion about what the job required I was sent a plumber with no tools or plumbers mate who looked at it and said "You need a Joiner. That will be £50 thanks" and left having done nothing - fume!!)  I no longer have to walk through the office to get into the bedroom - bonus!
On Sat I received two lovely parcels through the post. I opened the first one to reveal this sweet wee bag......
and inside the most gorgeous Bandit Bunnie brooch from Adatine......
 I treated myself to it after selling some of my old crap on eBay!! I also received this gorgeous wristlet bag from my friends Ness and Mark........
They bought it from Melin Tregwynt as they know how much I like their stuff, to make up for the fact that I hadn't been able to take up their invitation to join them at their holiday rental in St David's due to my lack of funds at the moment - such a thoughtful gesture. I love the card too by local artist Linda Norris.
On Saturday morning I also had my first proper meeting with a fellow blogger. I had arranged months ago to meet up with Karen at Ikea in Glasgow and finally the day had arrived! She was easy to spot - sitting on the bright red sofa surrounded by knitting!! We chatted non-stop for 2 hours and Karen very kindly gave me some expert tutoring on how to run the 2 different wools of a scarf I had started knitting (and thrown aside for several months out of pure frustration!)up the sides so I will not have to weave in all the ends.......
here it is in all it's glory so far - the bit at the bottom with the ends is BK (Before Karen) and the rest is AK!! I just can't seem to read patterns - I need someone to show me how to do it and then I eventually pick it up! I love the variegated colours - the pattern was from the BrooklynTweed blog and he did his with Noro Silk Garden. I have chosen to do mine with Noro Kureyon (I think I got it 'On Sale' somewhere) and I have to say that it is absolutely fuckish (good Glaswegian expression to describe something tricky, difficult, infuriating etc etc) to use. Anyway the end result is very pleasing and the excitement of seeing all the different colours emerge keeps me motivated to knit, knit, knit plus I no longer have a lingering feeling of failure when I catch sight of it in my knitting bag!
Karen also gave me a lovely handknitted Scarflette.......
in the most gorgeous colour of red - the photo doesn't do it justice - and some knitting notions for when I get around to knitting my first socks (I appreciate her confidence in my ability!). It was so lovely to finally meet Karen, she's a good laugh and I genuinely hope that it will be the first of many such get-togethers! I eventually headed home to get ready to go out  - myself and several friends had tickets for Wayne McGregor/Random Dance at our local theatre The Tramway.
Expectations were high and we were not disappointed! The show we saw was called ENTITY and it is by far the best thing I have seen all year - I absolutely loved everything about it - so much so that I have booked for the next touring show FAR that is coming to Edinburgh in October. Random Dance are touring throughout Europe and are also going to do a couple of performances in the US and Canada - check their site for tour dates and GO!! Add into the mix a few post performance drinks and lots of Prosecco and you have a great end to the week!! The slight hangover on Sunday was worth it!

EVERYONE'S A WINNER! I have decided that each of the six lovely people who left comments on the Stormy Monday post (Giveaway now closed) will get a mirror - what the hell - Life's Sweet!

Yet more Giveway Goodness will be happening tomorrow on my friends blog here. If you are a keen reader check it out!

Thursday, 26 May 2011

My Creative Space.

I have finally got around to winding my skeins of Colinette Jitterbug into balls ready to start work on a Babette Blanket so I spent the day shuttling between winding, winding, winding.......
on my homemade skein winder and, when it all got too much, pinning and sewing some new Liberty Print shower hats......
such pretty patterns and colours - a real feast for the eyes!
More creative spaces here.
Talking of feasts, I am going to miss my weekly dose of Antonio and Gennaro (The Two Greedy Italians) I thoroughly enjoyed their trip around Italy - Wednesday nights just won't be the same!

Monday, 23 May 2011

Stormy Monday.

As I type this a tempest is raging outside my window. It is almost as if my black mood has manifested itself! The event at Benmore yesterday was a complete wash-out - torrential rain made the whole event tedious and uncomfortable despite the magnificent setting. I (and many others) spent the day getting cold and wet (inside the marquee!!) my stuff was getting dripped on and I had to grin and bear it whilst the few hardy souls who managed to attend, picked over my pretty handmades like we were at a church hall bric-a-brac sale, muttering words like "extortionate" and "expensive" under their breath (but loud enough to hear!) I do not think my things are over-priced - the problem is that quite a few of the stall holders attending that event were completely underselling their wares so of course anything over £1.50 seems alot! I shouldn't let it upset me as I know not everyone realises or appreciates how much work goes into making something by hand but sometimes it just gets to me, especially when I am feeling a bit fragile after a rotten week! The diet went out the window and I gorged myself on home-baking from the Benmore Fundraising Stall and finished off the day with a greasy sausage supper - of course after that I really hated myself!
Anyway, rant over! How do you cheer yourself up after a rotten week? You do something nice and cheery like a giveaway! I am giving away 4 mirrors (winners to choose their preferred pattern) made from the new Liberty fabrics I purchased last week while I was wandering around town killing time waiting for the car to be fixed .......
All these fabrics were purchased at 25% less than normal price from Mandors in Glasgow (get there quick whilst stocks last - there is a huge selection!) and I am going to make shower hats from them. The bottom 2 are really cute and I only bought 20cms of each to make into mirrors.
I particularly like this with the owl and horse.....
 and this pretty floral print.......
and these wee owls are just too cute for words............
all you need to do is leave a comment on this post saying which fabric you like best! If there are more than 4 comments I will pick names out of a hat otherwise if 4 comments or less you are guaranteed a mirror. Giveaway ends a week today.
There - I feel much better now!
Happy Monday - have a good week!

Friday, 20 May 2011


In an effort to 'funkify' the living room I decided that I needed to make some new cushion covers. Initially I was going to buy a selection from Melin Tregwynt and make one large patchwork cushion from a pack of patchwork pieces from Margo Selby. However once the Margo Selby pieces arrived I knew that they needed to be mixed with some lovely plain Harris Tweeds from the stash and here they are....
I love the jewel-like colours and sheen of the Margo Selby fabrics......
against the rich matt 'hairyness' of the Harris Tweed.....
 even the monochrome works well.......
I was so excited by these combinations that I decided to take the idea and apply it to some bags which I christened the 'Margo' bags - very happy with the result!
I am off to Benmore Botanic Gardens for an event this weekend which entails a ferry ride across the Clyde estuary. I am hoping to get some good pics to share (weather permitting) - have a good weekendx

Thursday, 19 May 2011

My Creative Space.

Lots of mirrors to be made for a wedding happening up in Loch Ness....
There is something very therapeutic about the cutting of circles of fabric and assembly of mirrors - 50 mirrors in 5 colours of tweed.....
 very satisfying - especially when they are all packaged up and ready to go.....
It is so nice to think that these will be playing a small part in someone's special day!
More creative spaces here...

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Crappy Bag.

The Loch Fyne event last weekend went very well which is good as I have just had to shell out for dental treatment and for a car repair which has basically wiped out any money I made! I am not a happy bunny! However I do have one thing to smile about - I have a new bag....
I made this to try to sell at the event last weekend but it fell off my wobbly table into a large pile of liquified sheep droppings (we were in a marquee but the ground was very wet)
This is a pic of the car park before everyone arrived on Saturday morning - a beautiful spot, just very soggy! I tried to clean the bag but it was impossible to get the marks off (basically a really stubborn grass stain!)
Most people probably wouldn't have noticed but I knew and just couldn't bring myself to sell something that was less than perfect...
 so I had to keep the bag for myself..........
 obviously I am gutted! ; )

Friday, 13 May 2011

My Creative Space

Not alot happening here at the moment - just getting ready to cut out a shopping bag. It is very simple. Sometimes simple is best!
 **I originally uploaded this on Thursday but somehow Blogger deleted it! Anybody else experiencing this problem??