Saturday, 29 November 2008

Shopping for Reindeer...Shopping List Saturday Style

I couldn't help myself! We held our school Christmas Fair yesterday afternoon, which is always a flurry of excitement for the children (how many weeks are there 'til Christmas, Mummy?!), and topped the day off with a Christmassy evening watching the local parade as Father Christmas arrived to switch on the town lights...lovely!

This week, in honour of the great man's impending arrival, and the intensive training course that must be in full force up in the North Pole right now, my shopping list is dedicated to the speciality that is his transport...the gorgeous reindeer. How wonderful are they?!

1)Reindeer 8x8 Fine Art Print/ Sharon Montrose - wow. Just look at him in all his glory! Fabulous, fabulous image.

2)Reindeer Brooch/ lupin - too cute, don't you think? UK based (quite local to me, in fact) lupin's shop is packed full of sweet little handstitched felt pieces - something for everyone.

3)Deer (Original)/ meobrien - magical. This reminds me of a fairytale, or something from my dreams...from deep within our forest, perhaps?

4)10 Retro Reindeer Adhesive Gift Tags/ thecraftpantry - these SO take me back!! The Christmases of my childhood...I'm thrilled to have found them!

5)Pomegranate Deer Plush/ followthewhiterabbit - I know my girls would fall in love with this little beauty...who wouldn't? And if pinky tones aren't your thing, they are available in practically every colour of the rainbow.

6)Bunny Races - Print/ amberalexander - oh, so lovely, to finally discover what the deer and rabbits get up to during the night! Gorgeous.

I hope these appeal to you as much as they do to me. Why not check out fellow etsy sellers picks this weekend, by clicking on the Shopping List Saturday links in the sidebar? Please bear in mind that we are all in different time zones, so our posting times will vary.

If you'd like to play along with our Shopping List meme, just let me know! Happy weekend!

Thursday, 27 November 2008

Merry Go Round

Jump on the merry-go-round and join a group of artists/ crafts-women as they link hands around the world and tell you a little bit about their lives in art and craft!
We’re being a bit seasonal with our posts this month. The question we’re all going to answer is...
"How do the different seasons and weather affect you in your art and craft?"

I’m aware that for practically the entire month of November, I’ve done nothing but moan. Moan, moan, moan – nothing unusual in that, I know (before those that love me and put up with me feel compelled to leave a comment to prove it). The depressing light of day in these late autumnal /early winter months is hard to deal with. Am I the only person who struggles to get out of bed in the morning, when it’s still dark, and the warm comforts of a snuggly duvet are enticing me back to bed for ‘just five more minutes’?? It really does make you question your self discipline...but thankfully there are children to be breakfasted, sandwiches to make, ‘undergarments’ to retrieve from the ironing pile (no, I don’t iron them) and the school run to undertake (all in a mad rush!). Somehow, I manage to start the day.
But it doesn’t stop there – the general light in the house has lost its summer brightness; all clarity is gone. Remember our parents telling us off for sitting too close to the television – it’ll ruin your eyes!! – well, that’s it, my eyes feel ruined! I don’t need glasses (I’ve been tested) just proper daylight!! Not only that, but I’m fed up with poor photographs. It’s nigh on impossible to use electric light because it always leaves a caste over your images that I simply can’t eradicate...grrr!!

However, there are good points – honestly! I sit and sew my creations, using a machine or by hand. Granted, working in the evening is more difficult at this time of year, but it’s indoor work, so the weather doesn’t stop me. It’s lovely, too, to be able to reflect the changing seasons in your work – the colours of autumn for example, are glorious; winter sees crisp, cool snowy white; the advent of Christmas sees reds and golds; the party season heralds the opportunity to pile on sumptuous textures and sparkling beads; the colder days cry out for cosseting neckwarmers, scarves and shawls...fantastic!! I love the fact that I can embrace the year in this way; living in a forest, nature and its glorious colours are all around me. It influences our daily lives, so why should I fight it?
What was that line from a Crowded House song, now?...Ah, yes –

Colour is its own reward.


Please use the Merry Go Round links in the sidebar to read everyone's responses to this's fun to find out more about each other, isn't it? Just remember that we are all in different time zones - so if you don't see a post, please pop back again later. xxx

Wednesday, 26 November 2008

On My Desk Wednesday

I know...don't faint! I'm on time this week!!! It IS Wednesday, and this is my desk (well, dining table).
Some simply decorated log gift tags/hanging decorations...simple!

Visit kootoyoo's blog for more desk excitement, here.

Monday, 24 November 2008

Log'll see what I mean....

Welcome to our world...logs; candles; logs; candle holders; brown boxes; logs; raffia; logs....oh, yes - and logs.

The woodcutter has now fully equipped his new shop with...logs - well, candle holders anyway. Many permutations to take your fancy. In threes, sixes, bark on and bark off. All gift wrapped. I'm rather partial to the gift box packaging, but that's probably because it's my token effort. Everyone likes a bit of something pretty, don't they??!

Sunday, 23 November 2008

Blog Feature!

Lovely Rebecca, from Edward and Lilly, has popped a little feature about yours truly on her blog - I blushed all over when I read it! Such kind words, Rebecca - thank you so much xx

If you'd like to nip over there for a quick read, click here. And if you do, thanks very much - you'll be glad that you did, but not because of the post about me: Rebecca's blog is beautiful, her stitchery is delightful and she appears to work in an oasis of calm (On My Desk Wednesday speaks volumes!) does she do it??!!

Friday, 21 November 2008

A Rather Cold Shopping List Saturday

The weather forecast for the UK this weekend is BRRRR!!!, with some snow expected on the eastern side of the country....I had a chat with lovely Liane of enhabiten (delicious vintage textile art and homewares) yesterday - they have had a flurry of snow way over there in New Hampshire, too. What better than to stay inside in the warm and do a spot of shopping, handmade style? This week's list focuses on all things snowy...enjoy!

1)Frozen Heart/ angelacallanan You can almost feel the ice surrounding this heart, trapped forever in the frozen water! Part of the artist's Snow Queen series - check them all out. Wonderful.
2) Frosted Feathers Wreath/ Ivyndell For a whimsical touch - snowy and glittery, this twig wreath is home to a sparkling little feathered snowbird. How cute!
3)Vintage Ice Skates - Original Watercolour Painting/ kvwilkinson Aren't these gorgeous? Hung up after gliding over frozen romantic!
4)Snowflakes- bakers dozen/ cakeboxcookies Wow your friends with these delicious goodies...complete with silver sugar! How great is that?! They'll love you for it...
5)Abominable Snowman Magnet/ PearsonMaron Hey! Did you see him?? Bigfoot?? Look, quick - right there, on your freezer know you want him!! Make sure you eat up all of your ice-cream first...
6)tree card/ littlepaperbird - this wonderful card is a gift in itself - beautifully cut, standing like a scene from a fairytale. It can be kept on the mantel all year long, like a sculpture of snow capped trees on a hillside. Super.

For more great shopping ideas from Etsy sellers, please click on the Shopping List Saturday links in the sidebar. If you would like to come and join us with this meme, just let me know! Everyone's welcome! Have a warm and cosy weekend...!

Something New...

Just a quickie to show you the new Edwardiana Cowl collar that has been popped into my shop during the early hours of this morning.

Talking of which, I read a forum discussion once about when exactly was the right time to post new items. I read about people staying up all hours to post at the optimum time. But when is the optimum time....worldwide?! Etsy is, of course, an American site - but the USA doesn't have just one time zone...I tend to do mine at about midnight. Why am I not tucked up in bed??

*created with flickr toys
Perhaps you'd also like a sneaky peek at the woodcutter's new shop?? Currently, gift boxed candle sets are available - but they'll be added to, and you'll also be able to fill up your empty alcoves with clean, stripped decorative logs. Yum.

Thursday, 20 November 2008

On My Desk Wednesday (I know, it's Thursday...again!)

Better late than never??

Terrible pic (sorry) - taken in a hurry with my elbow propped on top of my mug of tea (why? no idea), whilst I tried to do some work on the computer. Another lesson learned. I don't multi-task very well...but don't tell the woodcutter I said that!

For more interesting lives of desks out there, pop over to kootoyoo's ( blog. Why not join in?

Wednesday, 19 November 2008

Hurry! Your Size Could Win You A Fabulous Prize!

Would you like to win one of Jackie's (dogdaisy92) glorious wrist cuff creations (above...thank you Jackie for letting me use your pic)? Well, you can - in your size, width and favourite colour - simply by completing her survey, leaving a comment here!
Jackie is asking for at least 100 participants, to get a good overview of sizes and to make it a valuable survey. You simply need to tell her your wrist measurement and preferred cuff width...that's it!

It really is as simple as go and enter your details, sit back and wait to hear that you've won! You never know...and you don't stand a chance if you don't take part!

Be QUICK...the closing date for those comments is tomorrow - Friday 21st November!!

I've Waited For Ages... make one of these!
During the summer, I desperately wanted to have a go at making a glamorous, unusual and voluptuous scarf. Well, not really a scarf - more of a cowly neckwarmery sort of thing. What with one thing and another, I didn't get around to it...until now.

I've selected one of my favourite pieces of fabric from my collection (I love soft blue and bronze together), and backed it with a stiff-ish taffeta that is a bit russet, a bit turquoise and a bit chestnut coloured. The colours are quite subtle and shimmer softly with movement.
I've been waiting to use that fabulous woven ribbon trim - and today it got its chance to shine! But the best bit about this collar? It has to be its versatility - it is completely reversible; there are buttons on both sides (mother of pearl), which means they can be hidden on the inside or shown off by being on the outside. There are so many ways to wear it - loosely, folded over, buttoned up, unbuttoned, as a scarf, upside down...and many more, I'm sure!

This should be on sale in my etsy shop by the end of today. Oops! It's Wednesday....On My Desk tomorrow, then....

Monday, 17 November 2008

Victorian Days

My little babies, ready for school, Victorian style!
This was how they went to school on Friday - the whole school, in fact...staff too - and everyone looked wonderful! There were chimney sweeps, governesses and chambermaids aplenty.
I didn't realise how difficult a mop cap could be to make....but, oh, I learned! The first attempt was just big enough for my daughter's doll; the second would have a fitted a space-hopper...but I just about got there in the end! The pinnies were a doddle in comparison.

Right now, it's Oliver Twist crazy in these 'ere parts!

Friday, 14 November 2008

Shopping List Saturday - Country Living Style

Today sees me hot-footing it off to the bright lights of the big city with a very good friend, to savour the delights of the Country Living magazine Christmas fair...I absolutely cannot wait!!! I'm going for research purposes, naturally (tee hee)...

In honour of this exceedingly exciting day, I've made a very small Shopping List, packed to the gills with country style. Hope you like them as much as I do!

1)Bohobo Bag/ beautythatmoves - I wish I had this to take with me! Shabby chic country roses...beautiful! Roomy and gorgeous.

2)shabby bird ornament/ wickedpen - go on, tell me you want one too! How sweet is this? I'd love this little fellow to reside on my mantel, to say hello to each morning!
3)Tea Party Pouch/ girlbyAileen - so pretty, isn't it? Like having a little bit of country cottage garden in your handbag with you all day. I love it.

4)Blue Moon Magic Harlequin Scarf/ LAOriginals - Yikes! So much fabulousness in one item! There are SO many things you can do with this scarf: split it and wear each one separately; wear them as a belt - and more! Click on the link to find out how versatile this scrumptious accessory is. Perfect!

For many more shopping ideas from some super fellow Etsy sellers, please click on the links (Shopping List Saturday:Check Out Their Lists!) in the sidebar. Today, we say a Shopping List 'goodbye' to Hens Teeth. I know you're very busy Viv, and it's a shame to lose you - I've always enjoyed discovering your beautiful selections on a Saturday evening! Thanks so much for playing along until now. I'll still be popping in to see your gorgeous stitcheries!

Thursday, 13 November 2008

On My Desk Wednesday - call it Thursday!

A new Random necklace, just right for the forthcoming holiday festive season ... Lots of lovely beads and buttons - some old, some new; glass ones, resin ones, casein ones; venetian ones, spanish ones ... I could go on! A tumbling, freefalling funloving necklace, full of colour with something to interest everyone. Just a shame about our dull weather - perhaps picnik will help me out a bit later. This should be in my Etsy shop by the end of the day.
Click over to kootoyoo's blog for more desk adventures around the world!
Thank you to Jackie for my Blogging Friends Forever award - I haven't forgotten it!

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

A Touch of Glamour

A little something glamorous - for the festive party season ahead.
This small collar is richly textured with claret coloured velvets, silks and organza. Ruby toned beads are sprinkled here and there to catch the light, and AB faceted beads twinkle from beneath the ruffles. I've had a bit of a job (to put it mildly!) photographing it. I figured that as this item of jewellery is perfect for partywear, it would be worn in the evenings - low light/ electric I wanted to show it as it would be seen and worn.

GRRR!! Hopeless! I'll have to pray for some decent light tomorrow and have another stab at it. Fingers crossed!!

Monday, 10 November 2008

Someone's Proud....

I know a little girl who's rather pleased with herself...and look! It is rather cute, isn't it? Looking over my shoulder at some fabulous photos on flickr, we admired the work of Dot (createarian), and her gorgeous little dotee and Amelia dolls.
Hmmn, thought eldest. I'd like to make one of those...and so she did! She's rather chuffed with the result, and I can see why! It's going to be a gift for her friend (whose birthday we missed last Friday) - this one's not coming my way then. Shame.

Sunday, 9 November 2008

Shopping List Saturday a day late!

Firstly, apologies for missing yesterday's post! I just wish I could find the time to write my posts in advance....I don't know how those who manage to do that, manage it!
I have a feeling that I'm not the only one to do this with my Shopping List this theme, no colour link, just exactly what you'll find on my favourites list this week! These have all caught my eye whilst dipping in and out of Etsy this week, so really you're just getting a little glimpse into 'my world'....enjoy!

1)Purple Branch Necklace - Purple and Lime /OlliesWoollies - I love the organic nature of jewellery like this. I feel like I've just discovered it on an exotic beach! It's that purple and lime again.....a winning combination in my book!
2)Walnut Babies Christmas Ornaments - set of 6 (Red Duvet) /SunnyDayArtandCraft - I know two little girls - and their friends - who would be in Little Girls' Heaven if they could get their hands on these! Adorable - they come in other colours, too!
3)Silver grey silk cuff /dogdaisy92 - I just adore Jackie's work. I know first hand that it is exquisitely made, with beautiful fabrics...I would buy everything she makes, if I possibly could. Gorgeous.
4)Art House Pin/ sillyboodilly - Love the buttons, love the trim...and she also makes lovely vintage fabric bracelets too, with fabulous co-ordinating buttons. Take a look!
5)Black Panther Bracelet /triz - triz is a new discovery for me, found through an etsy 'favourite' list. Stunning, dramatic items of jewellery like this, that will surely get you noticed. A definite new favourite for me!
6)Embellished Needlepoint Wrist Cuff - size 7.00(W538) /lesjardinsdevie - one word: needlepoint. The time it must take!! I am in awe of anyone with such staying power! The results are wonderful - colourful and feminine, with really pretty embellishments.
7)Wool Pear / WhimsyByJess - Just love this! A sweet play toy, but utterly cute filling a fruit bowl adorning your table!
8)Clara, the Eco-Friendly Sock Mouse /kevor - I could easily battle it out with my girls for custody of this precious little sweetie. Isn't she terrific? Best get in there quickly before I do...I think I must have her!

Did you find the other Etsy sellers Lists this week, whilst I was away? Do click on their links in the sidebar - everyone finds great items that I bet you haven't seen before! Welcome, too, to a new player this week: lovely to have you, Shelly!

Friday, 7 November 2008

Not Today - Sunday!

Just to say - sorry if you've popped in expecting to see my Shopping List Saturday post. Please call back though, because I will be posting on Sunday instead.

In the meantime, please use the 'Shopping List Saturday:Check Out Their Lists!' blog links for some super shopping ideas from fellow Etsy sellers! I'm pleased to say that we have yet more new players joining in, so please take a little look!
Thank you, and have a good weekend!

Front Page - and I missed it!

This treasury, by Olaladesign - aptly named Sleeping Beauty - was apparently on the front page of Etsy yesterday evening...and I missed it! I have to confess, I do love a bit of Celebrity Scissorhands.....
I really must get to work on some new products - then, if this happens again (fp), at least there will be something new in my shop to look at. I can't complain - I've been really busy - but the old fancypicnic wares definitely need an injection of newness. I just need to get today and the weekend over with, those orders completed, and my restless fingers can get cracking!

Thursday, 6 November 2008

Where Does All the Time Go?!

Almost finished the last of my custom orders...and I feel ready to launch into some new products! A little sack of goodness has come my way, thanks to a friend who knows someone in the bridal dressmaking industry - look at these delicious offcuts!
I can picture a collar and ruff with matching cuffs that the Snow Queen would be proud of...

My mind has been racing a little whilst I've been working - I feel the need to make some Christmas stockings, some Christmassy bunting, some padded ornaments....but is that simply self-indulgent? I'd like to make my own gifts this Christmas - but I always say that, and never manage it. I'd like to make some glamorous neck warmers; some Christmas party glittery fancy necklaces; some decadent cuffs; some pendants suitable for the one you love; some accessories for the man in your life...but how do you find the time??!!! Answers on a postcard, please (in the comment section)!

Wednesday, 5 November 2008

On My Desk Wednesday

Not a very good picture...picnik has given me a bit of a helping hand, but it's not great. Ah, well - this is what is on my desk right now. A cushion I have made as a gift for my parents' ruby wedding anniversary. The stitching isn't great - my machine is playing up a little. It keeps looping and failing to pick up the lower thread unless I only stitch in one direction. Why???!! I've fiddled and faffed, but I can't solve it. Could be a slight problem for making new jewellery....eek! Any ideas? I've tried changing thread and needles, adjusting tensions, all knobs (you know what I mean!) set to zero as the feed dogs are joy. Oh dear!

Hop over to kootoyoo's blog for more desk culture.

Monday, 3 November 2008

Back to Normality...

Half term is now over - time to get back to the grindstone!
I have to say that a part of me missed the routine of a blog post every I'm feeling a bit sluggish trying to get back into the swing of things!

Remember a week or two ago I posted a photo of some work in progress? It was a custom order, and I thought it was favourite black, with silver and grey, and a touch of purple and lime. A collar was requested - one that could be worn normally, but also easily lengthened to be worn over a winter coat. Well, here it is...I love the colour combination, don't you? I'm thrilled with the effect of the floaty long silver metallic threads - just a hint of shimmer!

Saturday, 1 November 2008

Shopping List Saturday

So, Hallowe’en has been and gone...and if memory serves me correctly (ha ha), the high street stores will now launch into overdrive to get us all hot under the collar about Christmas. Personally, I LOVE Christmas...I start to feel tingly all over during mid October...but frankly, I feel annoyed to have all of those glitzy, over-priced items shoved under my nose the second the summer sales have come to an end. I prefer to think of raging log fires; of weeks spent foraging for pine cones to dip in a bit of glitter; of hours happily spent home baking gifts for all...hmm. Scrap that last one.....
This Shopping List is an ode to preparation. I love the notion of sewing away into the evening, creating perfect handmade items to adorn the house on the approach to the big day, but I know it’s something I fail miserably at! Therefore, I’ve found some deliciously made advent calendars! We all need them early, so that we can prepare for what may need to be popped inside, and I think these are fabulous.

1)Christmas Advent Calendar Wall Hanging/HanhansStitching - delightful... something to cherish and pass down through the generations
2)OOAK Advent Calendar Christmas Swag/ ShellyRaeWood – a new twist on tradition, I love these little pursey-pockets and the inclusion of vintage buttons
3) Christmas Advent Box (Snowman)/ MySweetSussie – no need to search for chocolates or little treats; rather, this box contains little suggestions for activities for the month of December.
4)24 Exclusive Advent Calendar Pouches – choose your font and ribbon/ nuvonova – you choose the typeface you want, and the ribbon trim that you want! How great is that? Perfect if you would like something to fit in with a colour scheme, and made just for you!
5)Christmas Light Advent Calendar Pattern/ reevesfarm – I am completely smitten with these...I just wish I could crochet. I adore those large Pifco-esque fairy lights with their solid colours, and here they are in a handmade fashion!
6)Matryoshka Advent Calendar/ thymbyldesigns – with delightfully designed illustrations, these pouches are gorgeous, and very in keeping with the trend for little Russian dolls. Beautiful!

Today, we welcome along some new players with our Shopping List Saturday meme – please click on the links in the sidebar to see what they would buy.
Shop from the warmth of your own home this weekend...perfect!