Happy Easter…

I forgot the below photo on my recent Tweed Purse post.  For those whose who’ve followed the purses from the beginning, you know well that they are blatantly based on the good old Lindt bunny which is gracing the selves of every supermarket and corner shop in the UK at the moment.  It’s the only product I make that isn’t really my own design in that it was always intended as a tweed version of the very delicious chocolate original, but I like to think it has a Linen Cat twist and so deserves a place in my shop.  Just thought I’d mention it in case you were wondering why they looked so familiar.

I hope everyone is off to a good start to the Easter Holidays?  We’ve been off for nearly 2 weeks now so the boys are going a little stir crazy but the beautiful weather is certainly helping, I can’t imagine what they’d be like stuck indoors.  We’ve been out and about on walks, picnics in the park and a trip to Camber Sands and although it’s been lovely I am suddenly really homesick for the Yorkshire Dales.  It’s just so busy here in Kent, I really miss being able to set off for a walk where you can get away from everything and find a nice peaceful spot for a picnic (around us the land is mainly agricultural or horse pastures so you can’t just potter off as you can at home) and I really, really miss being able to swim in the river.  I am sure these things are possible in Kent in the right places, I guess I was just spoilt as a child having it all on the doorstep.

As I’m being all nostalgic for my childhood and I was asked about the images to the left of my notice board recently I thought I’d chat about them; they are in fact some of the cards from the Happy Families set, illustrated by Racey Helps.  We used to stay with my Gran quite often as children (for those who read here a lot, you’ll already know that my Gran was a great influence and encourager of my sewing and drawing) and a highlight was sitting in her bed in the mornings reading stories, singing songs and playing games.  We used to read all sorts but the main books that fix in my mind are the many with animals dressed in clothing and living in their imaginary worlds.  I have very fond memories of Richard Scarry books and also of Racey Helps and recently started collecting old copies of both.

The Racey Helps appear to be out of print, which is really sad as my boys love the stories

and I adore the images, especially the flower and nature details.

I’m sure it has some influence on the fact I like to create dressed animals amongst my products.  You can find out all about Racey Helps in so many places, I wont chatter on, I just wanted to share my current sideline obsession (well, one of them anyhow) and as they have such a Spring feel it seemed like a good time to post a few photos.

Today, we are getting ready for Easter, the boys have been helping me decorate and tidy, F did the above drawings and I promised him I’d photograph them for my blog, so here you go, a bunny, a lamb and a butterfly….apparently 🙂

Lastly, Create are running an Easter Egg Hunt on the 27th April where you can win an iPad2, it’s a twitter competition and promises to be loads fo fun so do join in if you can and pop over to the link to watch their cute promo videos (my boys love the giant egg, I think they assume it really is made out of chocolate – bless!).

Happy Easter everyone!

Obsession…

I have been displaying typical ‘me’ obsessive behavior recently, I would love to say I get obsessive about things like cleaning, or even running but sadly that’s not to case (although I am quite enjoying the running at the moment).  I think most folk who sew and blog know some of the areas I am talking about, I permanently have a laptop attached to me and cannot resist buying nice fabric.

My most recent fabric purchase is from the new cotton voiles by Anna Maria Horner, bought from Saints & Pinners.  I couldn’t resist it even though I have no need of more fabric but it’s intended for making a summer top, I rarely sew for myself, especially clothes despite being able to pattern cut and construct and this summer I intend to make an effort to keep those skills alive by making some of my own clothes.

I have also been indulging my printer obsession, I could happily spend hours creating and printing stickers.  I’m not sure if any of you have visited The Shop recently but I have (slowly) been giving it a mini face-lift, including a new banner.  I’ve then spent many a happy hour printing matching stickers, tweaking the paper bit by bit to get the images exactly on the sticker lines.  Worrying really!

I also spent rather a lot of time sitting at the laptop viewing Google Maps, Streetview.  I LOVE it!  The boys and I ‘drove’ to Grandma’s house in Yorkshire from the nearby village, taking in the 360 views, which they thought was great, they couldn’t understand why we couldn’t pop into the house to say, “hello”, bless!  Well, I had a stunning, cunning idea, the above painting belonged to my Father, a gift for his 18th Birthday I believe and is a water colour by an artist called Angus Rands.  It always take pride of place for me, among our varied and quite often modern artwork as it’s so exactly Yorkshire in both it’s scene and colours.  I know it’s painted up near Beckermonds in the Dales but I have always wondered exactly where.

Well, Streetview provided the answer, that and my ‘walking’ down a long stretch of road inch by inch until I found the spot.  Sorry to go so off topic on the usual craft chat but I have been looking at this painting for years and have even driven along the road trying to see where it was painted so for me it was a bit of a ‘Eureka’ moment.

Finally, I have been shopping on-line again (some would say yet another little obsession!)

This is ‘Melvin’ and he comes from the very talented Flora over at Through the Round Window.  He was supposed to be an Easter present along with ‘Maurice’

but I rather fell in love and have ordered more to replace them as they are now hanging in my kitchen window, where they make me smile daily.

There are new products in the pipeline (as always, waiting on supplies needed to complete them) but right now it’s time to go and work on my final obsession and the main reason for my slow blogging at the moment The Garden, there is so much to be done and the weather right now is perfect for pottering in the greenhouse so I’m off, hope you are having some sunshine where you are.

Where did they go…?

When I came to pack up the Bunny Lavender Bags photographed the last post (thank’s Kirsten!) I was surprised their storage box looked like this

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where did they all go?  Well I guess that’s a daft question, I’ve sold them all except the last lonely three left, of which I plan to keep one as a sample.

When I originally made them, my husband was not keen, he really didn’t like them so much so that I gave them a low price and then they went in the sale with a really, really low price.  They then turned out to be one of my best sellers which just proves my husband knows nothing about these things and I should trust my instinct.

A little trip down iPhoto memory lane reminds me I had a nightmare marking out the patterns

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and that the originals were to have button tails and were to come in four colour ways

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but my finished Bunnies were most definitely cute enough

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so much so that I will miss them and plan to make more after a Bunny break, probably next year now and most definitely in time for Easter (yes, yes I am always thinking ahead for the shop, sorry), but for now there are two green ones left on Folksy ready to hop away and when they’re gone, they’re gone!…well ’till next year anyway.

Happy Easter…

The boys were very happy to see that the Easter Bunny had dropped by our house this morning and that they were allowed to eat some of their chocolate eggs for breakfast.  In a moment we will be visiting our neighbour, Malcolm, as apparently his hens lay chocolate eggs on Easter Sunday (the boys like to go and feed the hens and stroke the many ferrets that Malcolm keeps), then we will be off up the road to Auntie Tori’s house for lunch with friends…eight adults and six young children, it will be lots of hectic fun.  We are taking some egg cosies and flowers from the garden as a present.

Hope you all have a lovely relaxing day and that the Easter Bunny has dropped by your house.

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Keep those Eggs Cosie…

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I should have written this entry ages ago, as these cosies have been in the shop for a while as part of my Easter range…in fact I only got as far as the Egg Cosies.  I had planned cards and some other bits and pieces but to be honest it’s been a busy few months so everything is running behind.  The Wool Baby Bunnies and Spring Birds have proved quite popular as Easter Gifts but it’s mainly the Chick Egg Cosies that have been a winner.  I have also managed to finally get the Boy version of the Wool Baby Bunny finished, with the help of some lovely new fabric from FabricRehab who had recently updated their range.

Well, here they are and what a fantastic excuse to buy some nice new double egg cups from good old Heals.

Hope you all have a lovely Easter weekend.

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Tweet, tweet…

I have spent this week making Easter/Spring products, as always I am a bit behind and should have been making these over winter.  Never mind.

Some of the new products are little spring birds based on robin decorations that I made last Christmas (except they had feather tails and knot leather legs – I will be adding them to the Christmas section this year) and I can’t decide whether they should be lavender bags or just decorations?  I have made the first few as lavender bags but the rest are waiting to be stuffed.  I worry that people think that as lavender bags they are something that should be thrown away as the lavender fades.  I stuff all my lavender bags with 3 very heaped dessert spoons of lavender and in some cases polyester stuffing where a bit of extra shape is needed so they are pretty potent but the reality is the smell will fade in time.

What do you think?  Your opinions will be welcome as I really can’t decide on this one.

Please excuse the dark photo but it’s a dreary morning so far.

Tweet, tweet bird in orange