Sunday, 27 May 2012


A most glorious weekend of sun,seashore and cars.  The first DEAL CLASSIC CAR AND MOTOR SHOW was held on Saturday on Walmer Green next to the beach.

I have been to a lot of car shows over the last few years and I really liked this venue.  It was very well organised, within easy walking distance of deal town centre, the bands playing ranged from good to exceedingly good and it had some very nice cars.  This 1929 Triumph that was parked next to us was one of the 'barn finds' that you read about.  It had been in a very sorry state when its current owner found it in 1979 and started restoring a couple of years later.
Our Mercury Cougar sparkled in the sunshine and attracted lots of attention. It was definitely worth spending the time giving it the extra care.

For some unknown reason with the big American cars I went all arty and took pictures of the fins and grills.

I really hope that they will hold this show again.  I think it must have been a success - towards the end of the afternoon there were still crowds of people walking around.  The weather must have helped a little.               
 The RETRO MARKET was better than some that I have seen.  I brought a few items from some of them.

There was even a vintage pram.

Because the show was so close to town I had a chance to look for NEEDLE FELTING needles (I had broken one on my first try).  I managed to get some and started felting again.  It was a lot easier to do my little dragon with a single needle.

Saturday, 26 May 2012

pot holders and lavendar bags

With the fabric I got from strawberry fayre  several different projects came to mind: -

Pot holders either done in patchwork - a craft I had not tried or applique which I do like doing and which would give me a chance to try simple quilting techniques.  The pot holder idea would also work to stand pots on.

 Patchwork (of a fashion) was the only thing I could think of to do with 400 inch squares of fabrics.   Because the squares were so small this was a nice project to carry around.

 A selection of pot holders ready (mostly) to be pressed. Then to have a layer of wadding and a backing piece added, a little bit of very simple quilting and the edges bound.
  The other project being lavender bags.  I promised my Mother that I would make her some.  I still have a bag of dried lavender from my garden last year and she just wanted plain and simple bags to put under her pillow. 

 These have to have been some of the simplest things I have ever sewed.  Just two squares from a charm pack sewn together with running stitch, no turning right sides out and then filled with lavender and the last side sewn up.  The lavender is still very fragrant - last year must have been a very good year.

Sunday, 20 May 2012

NEEDLE FELTING - a beginners experience

At the beginning of the year I made three resolutions: - to learn to use my craft robo (I have made a start on that), to do goldwork embroidery (I have everything ready now to start), and to learn needle felting. 

Ever since I discovered Etsy and Pinterest I have been seeing the most amazing needle felt creations.  Life like miniature animals, fantastic dolls and so much more.  It was all so beautiful that I wanted to see what I could do. 

This weekend, having collected all the things I needed, I decided to take the plunge.  I did a quick bit of Internet research and immediately found I had the wrong sort of felting needle. I also found all sorts of tips, help and tutorials.

I meant to try and make a penguin as it looked fairly simple.  Not surprisingly it was not that easy. 
I rolled my first shape and started work .... I love my creation and am really quite proud of it although I am not sure what it is exactly.

my very first piece of needle felting

Still a lot more practice needed.

A trip to the shops to get some other needles - it should be easier to do the finer detailing.
not quite sure what this little creature is

 This looks like a very good tutorial - so trying to make a bear could be the next project.
Although my creation did not end up quite as I had intended I liked needle felting so much that I am really glad that I decided to give needle felting a go.
he looks a bit like a rabbit dressed as a dragon

 I found these little creatures when I was searching for information on how to needle felt. 
 Twenty of the coolest and weirdest needle felted creations 

my second piece of needle felting
I also tried the other method of needle felting (the type my needle was for)  and made this butterfly. 
This was felted on to a piece of grey felt roughly cut into a butterfly shape. 

Saturday, 19 May 2012


This seemed a fun idea so I thought I would enter.  The closing date is monday 21st May 2012.

I love looking at other peoples creations - so many beautiful items by very talented people. Doing things like choosing items for the homepage makes for a good way to look at other shops, By looking for themed products things that could otherwise be missed are discovered.  I found listing things to my pinterest board much easier than doing an Etsy treasury list (although I love doing them) because items are saved automatically, there is nothing more frustating than to have got close to finishing a treasuary list only to lose the whole lot.  Maybe I am doing it wrong.

Any way here is a link to my entry to the FOLKSY HOMEPAGE. 

There are several things on here that I really like,  Saving up starts now.

Friday, 18 May 2012


                      A sneaky memory from my childhood.

My brother and I spent a lot of time being very friendly with a local garage when the DUNLOP GROUNDHOG TYRES were being advertised.

We both loved the Groundhog and had many promotional items - keyrings, stickers and a Groundhog bubble bath.

I refused to part with my dolls pram because of the I'M A GT GROUNDHOG sticker that I had put on the front.

I still have the sticker ( my Mum managed to get it off the pram) and the empty bubble bath bottle.  And some years ago my brother made me some Groundhogs using the keyring as a mould.

I found this while I was looking for information . . . 

it would seem that Dunlop tyres last for a few years.

Tuesday, 15 May 2012


 I have had this recipe for nearly thirty years. I have no idea where the recipe came from, the book disappeared long long ago.
 It is the only one I have found that has no fat in it.  

I have enjoyed eating it for so long.  I thought that I would share it with you.

3 bananas (the riper the better)
2 eggs
6 ounces sugar
8 ounces plain flour
1teaspoon salt (I have never put this much in)
1 teaspoon bicarbonate of soda
2 ounces walnuts ( optional)

Crush the bananas to a pulp and gradually work in the eggs, flour, sugar, salt, and bicarbonate of soda.  
Stir in the nuts.
Put into a prepared loaf tin 
Bake for one hour at gas mark 3 (160 degrees Centigrade) 

I hope you enjoy this cake.  I have just baked one and will be having a slice shortly,

Thursday, 10 May 2012


On Sunday my friends and I went to the see the bluebells at Kings Wood in Kent.

It was not my first plan (which was to go to the Warren at Folkstone) but the weather had been so wet in the week leading up to the bank holiday we all decided on a change of venue.  Sunday was not a particularly nice day either but this is England and if we waited for the perfect day we would go nowhere and do nothing.

This was not the biggest puddle or the most mud we found.

All the puddles had to be assessed to see if crossing was viable by my young friend shown in this picture

 But although it was definitely on the cold side and extremely muddy the woods were very busy (so much so when we arrived we thought there was an organised event).

Going maybe a week earier might have shown us a better display of bluebells and a warmer day may have filled the air with perfume but I love walking in the woods at any time of year.  In spring there are so many different greens as leaves burst their buds.

Old mixed woodland like Kings Wood with its mix of trees - such as birch, beech and sweet chestnut are a joy to walk in. 

I love the way that time transforms the coppiced trees.

Monday, 7 May 2012

A new toy to play with - BIND-IT-ALL

On Thursday I was given a BIND-IT-ALL as a present.  I have been looking at them for some time trying to assess how useful they would really be.  After all these things are not cheap and if they are not used (or used enough - I really must get the craft robo out of the cupboard) then much needed space is taken up storing yet another gadget.
A general Internet search lead to CUTTING EDGE CRAFTS.  I have never brought anything off them before but their site was easy to use, they had everything I wanted, and there was free postage.  The parcel arrived very quickly and was well packed. 

After a quick run through of the instructions and making sure that the covers would end up in the right place I had a go.  This is my first attempt a little book with black covers and grey card pages.  I think it will work quite well as a memory or brag book.  It was so easy to do - although I did cut the wire slightly to small to start with, I am saving that for another project.

CRAFTY COMPUTER PAPER have a competition this weekend so BIND-IT-ALL in hand I decided to give it a go.  I stamped a flight design on some paper and then photocopied it onto a cotton sheet (that you can print on) this is the cover of the book, I also stamped various images relating to the Jubilee to use as embellishments and printed them onto some fuzzy paper.

Before covering the covers with the cotton I glued a thin layer of wadding onto the card ( I used the sides of a wine box that I had)  It is important that you leave your printed cotton for about an hour before trying to remove the backing paper - it makes it much easier to do, to begin with I tried to get the backing paper off to soon.  I covered the outside of the covers with the cotton and  used some lovely floral rose paper to cover the inside.

Then I cut some card to size.This I thought, as I needed a Jubilee theme, would be an album to put Diamond Jubilee pictures into.  The holes for the book  were cut, a little effort needed as the card covers with the wadding and fabric were quite thick.  Then the book was bound together.  A little bit of decoration and the project is completed.

I put a clear sheet of acetate as the first page of the memory book. The second sheet has a ship design to commemorate Britain's seafaring history with a Union Jack in the top corner.

Brads and bakers twine fasten the book.

Most of the pages are blank a few have fuzzy paper additions like the word POSTCARD shown here.

My Partner needed some paperwork bound - it was a little fiddly to start with but after a couple of trail runs on some scrap paper we found it easy to bind the A4 sheet together into a book. 

The manual for the BIND-IT-ALL although brief is clear and concise and the guides on the machine are easy to use.  It is very important to empty the waste frequently.

Tuesday, 1 May 2012

Fridge magnets and phone charms

I found some magnetic paper that can be used in an inkjet printer a little while ago and thought that I would see what I could do.

I spent some time drawing snails (mostly because I had decided to do a goldwork snail as a practise piece before starting on my goldwork embroidery project).  This was mostly to get the size right but as I was doing it I found that each one seemed to have its own little quirks and characterBy the time I had five different little characters I stopped trying to draw a goldwork design and started to think what other personalities I could invent.  I now have ten cute little snail characters completed and printed onto the magnetic paper. 

Each little snail has a different story to tell - a story that I have enjoyed developing almost as much as I enjoyed creating the snails

Zombie snail fridge magnet

 From poor little Zombie Snail with his damaged eyestalk, bite marks and the holes in his shell to Cheesy Snail with his big grin I am struggling to find a favourite snail.  

I have just found some information about zombie snails (and I had no idea that they are real) I feel quite sorry for them.
I am not that keen on that thousands of snails that seem to have chosen to live in my garden but I love these fellows.

Cheesy snail

I love them so much that I decided to also print them on shrink plastic and make them into phone charms.   I have listed both the fridge magnets and the phone charms on my FOLKSY Shop. 

pirate snail phone charm

At the moment all the snail fridge magnets and the phone charms have free postage and packing. 

surprised snail        zombie snail
sad snail               bashful snail
sorry snail            vampire snail
happy snail          pirate snail
cheesy snail         hippy snail

so why not come and meet them all at . . . . . . . . . .
I look foreward to seeing you there.