Saturday 29 June 2013

Bringing me nice post!

I love it when the postie brings you nice things, not bills and other such miserable whatnot.  Today was one of those days!

I was feeling a little bit miserable as I didn't bid on a caravan I've been watching on ebay.  This is the caravan to be turned into my crafting room, not one for holidaying in.  I have a budget of £400 and have missed out on a few as they went over my price bracket.  Then I saw this beauty - a 1980s Sprite Alpine, the exact caravan we had when I was a child!

 I watched, and waited, and this morning, with minutes to go it was only £320.  Did I bid, no I did not.  I let my head rule my heart and I am watching another caravan with a better internal layout more suited to my needs.  I phoned my mother to tell her, "Oh you silly thing, I told you to get it" she said.  I have faith in my judgement that Monday may bring me the right caravan.

Then Mr Postie arrived and brightened my mood no end, I'm not one to sulk really but he did bring me such delightful gifts as to cheer me up anyway.

Want to see what I got?!

Of course you do!

Firstly some new make-up.  I don't wear very much now I don't work, but still need a little bit to take away the dark shadows and paleness of my skin.  I use a fantastic online company called e.l.f which you can find here They sell everything you could need and are seriously as cheap as chips.  This week they were doing an offer where if you spent £20 you got a goodie bag worth £25 of products free!  I only order about once a year now so decided that this would be the time to do so.

This is my £20 of products:

This is my goodie bag!

What lovely treats.

I also got the latest, and apparently last ever, Cloth magazine.  I took out a three month subscription for £5 to see if I fancied subscribing to it; I also did it with Simply Crochet magazine too.  It's a great way to see if you like a magazine without having to commit to it if you decide you don't want to after all.  There was a note inside to say they have ceased trading and will be sending Craftseller magazine instead.  I only have one issue left so will be cancelling as I had decided that it wasn't for me.

On top of this Mr Postie also delivered a much awaited book, the autobiography of journalist and fashionista Liz Jones!  Love her or hate her, this is a much talked about book that I'm looking forward to reviewing.  It only went out to a handful of people so I feel privilaged that I was one of the few.

To add to this bundle of delights, yesterday bought with it the latest Pretty Nostalgic magazine, with a feature on caravans - serendipity methinks!

Hope you all have a wonderful weekend, forecast said for beautiful sunny weather, clearly not right now though!  We are off to pick up the holidaying in caravan tomorrow so be prepared for Tales of Enid coming soon!!!

G x

By the way, a big hello to my new followers, and for the lovely comments about my frock.  I still haven't been able to wear it though as it's been too cold!  Off  now to try to see if I can link to Bloglovin' before the end of the month arrives!

Wednesday 26 June 2013

Sew La Tea Do

Last week I made my first proper dress, from a real pattern and all!  I used my new Pip Lincolne book Sew La Tea Do which I spotted in Liberty when I went to London a few months ago.  Inside are 25 patterns for all different kinds of things, and it includes two dresses which is what prompted me to buy the book.

I decided to make what looked like the easier of the two dresses, the sleeveless tunic style dress.  I very sensibly cut out the pattern pieces on one day, and then sewed them a couple of days later so as not to rush, though it was very tempting to do it all at once!

The dress as it is meant to look like!

The cutting process went okay until I went to cut out the front piece and realised that as I had cut the smaller facing pieces first, I hadn't left myself enough room to put the front pattern piece on!  Luckily with some careful manouvering of the pattern I managed to squeeze in on in the end!

This fabric is a pale green, though you can't tell it from this photo!
 Sewing it all together wasn't quite as complicated as I'd imagined it to be.  I had a couple of errors where I sewed the facings on the wrong way round, and then again when I went to sew the whole thing together and I'd put them on wrong side round!!!!  Thankfully it was all unpickable if a little bit frustrating!

Here's the finished result!

The back!

The front, with added Sanderson pocket!
 I'd definitely make it again, though this time probably using a thinner, less creasy material, and I'd make it longer.  The pattern said for 2m of fabric which is what I bought, but I think 2 and a half metres would make it a better length.  However, with leggings underneath, I'll get away with it!  But considering the cost of the fabric (about £3.50 from Abakhan) it's definitely value for money.

Aside from the sewing, I'm still working on my crochet blanket, got loads to go still on that score!  Following on from my last post, I'm excited to say that we've bought a caravan for holidaying in!  Pictures etc to follow after we've fetched it this weekend!  I've also just discovered a gorgeous blog by the lovely Hettie Brown.  You can follow her here

Hope you're all having fun!

G x

Saturday 22 June 2013

Going with the flow - sort of!

Why is there always something that needs doing?  I long for the days where there were no decisions to be made, when I could spend all day in bed reading and watching dvds if I so chose.  They are gone, long gone now.

Yesterday before setting off for work, I decided to take stock of life, and inspired a little by a recent post from Lucy over at Attic24, decided that instead of doing what I really wanted to do (crochet) I would actually do what needed doing in the house - sorting the girlies ironing pile!  For all too long now, I've been washing, drying and folding it, then lazily abandoning it on a chair in the lounge.  No longer would this continue - yesterday I sorted it into two piles and instructed the 6 and 4 year olds to put them away in their relevant drawers!  (At the time of writing, they have moved said piles into their bedroom with the intention of doing this chore today - we shall see)!

If the weather brightens I intend to venture outside and clean their gypsy caravan as it needs a good scrubbing every year to clear the bits Mother Nature leaves all over it's bright pink wooden surface.  Then it will be an interior over-haul as the adorable monkeys have a tendency to play in it and then abandon everything on the floor; oh yes, that might need cleaning too!

Will just point out that the caravan is no longer at the front of our house but in the garden, tucked away in the woods!

I've managed to find a few moments to continue with my granny squares, started oh so long ago, on a Monday crafting session with Lottie.  I bought some cream wool last week to finish the final row in, and started blocking them so I can see what it will look like when it's finished.  It's going in my caravan - when it's complete and when I get a caravan!

I'm trying to catch-up on my reading too, which is having peaks and troughs.  At the moment, I read for pleasure, for two book groups and for review purposes.  That's an awful lot of books!  I've 100 pages left of a current review book, a gripping crime novel which I'm really enjoying. 

I also picked up three new books from the library that I'm really keen to read for myself.

A recommendation from my #booktwin

We watched this on tv a few months ago - it was really good

 And then Mr Postie delivered these two new review titles today!

Emily Barr writes fantastic books - they all involve an element of travel in them, and some sort of twist.  I can now count her as a friend, albeit an online one, and if she didn't live so flaming far away, would be going to her book launch next month.  Only I'm not!

Viv Groskop is a reviewer and journalist, and now, stand-up comedian.  We chat on twitter lots and both love the same books, so I've labelled us #booktwin.  This makes for lots of extra reading for me as if she recommends something, I then end up having to read it too so we can discuss whether we felt the same about it! Oh, what a chore!!!!

My latest request arrived at the library this week and I fetched it yesterday.  The caravans in here are gorgeous!  Am stroking as is my way!

Hope you are having a good weekend - it's officially Summer now so I guess that's why it's raining, again!

G x

p.s. keep your fingers crossed, I might have a caravan to turn into my crafting space soon!!!!!!

Oh yes, and I made a dress this week!  Will blog about it next time x

Thursday 13 June 2013

Pipped at the post

How often is it that you go to post a blog on something particular, only to find someone else got there first?  That's what happened to me this weekend, when I checked out the latest blog post by my lovely friend A over at Lazy Daisy Jones

She showed a beautiful photo of the cushion that had just arrived from America from the new shop of the one, and only, Tif Fussell aka Dottie Angel!

I was gutted, not only had her cushion arrived, but I had ordered mine on the same day, and it had not arrived.  Even more than that, we had chosen the same one!!!!  I could only marvel at how lovely her cushion looked and sit and wait for the postie to bring one to me.

Monday came and went.

Tuesday came and went.

I sent miserable messages to Miss Jones to speak of my sorrow.

Wednesday came, and so too did a delivery.  My glee could not be contained.  My perfectly perfect peachy cushion cover had arrived!

Tis gorgeous if I do say so myself, and even the hubby approved of said purchase!  Tif said that I am perfectly perfect for this design, so I'm glad I didnt' choose a different one, though if the pennies add up I may be off there again!  If you haven't seen Tif's shop with Society 6 yet, it can be found over here  Lots of beautiful things to tempt you, should you feel inclined, and I think there is free postage today (if you use this link!

Speaking of the queens of granny chic, if you haven't already heard on the blogging grapevine, my other blogging pal, Rachelle (co-author of the fab Granny Chic book with Tif) has another book out next year!!!!!  Based on the seasons, it's going to be full of craftyness and, be still my beating heart, patterns of the granny frock variety!  2014 cannot arrive quickly enough!

In the meantime, I am continuing with my granny square blanket that I started an age ago.  I finally purchased some cream wool to do the final row in and for joining them together so my plan is to have it in the new caravan, when it arrives.  Did I mention I'm getting a caravan for my birthday?!

I did find time yesterday to make this for a certain little lady to go in her new bedroom.  She said it was amazing!

I'm going to get it framed for her.

Hope the rain isn't getting you down!

G x

Tuesday 11 June 2013

Weekend Jolly

We had a rare weekend away as we helped to celebrate my in-laws ruby wedding anniversary in Herefordshire.  We went to a very quaint teashop called Aunt Martha's, where everyone was wearing Victorian serving clothes!  Very amusing!

After this, we went to Puzzlewood, in the heart of the Forest of Dean, which has featured in shows such as Merlin and Doctor Who, and the recent movie Jack the Giant Slayer.  It's a beautiful place for exploring, and searching for fairies!  I left the camera in the car so only had my phone, but luckily I found some of these images via the internet!

Wooden bridges to run over

Secret passageways and stepping stones
 The next day we went to Tintern Abbey where the girls had a lovely time running around in the summer sun.

Now it's back to normal, (raining today) with 6 weeks of the school term remaining until the holidays begin - arghhhhhhh!  Popped to the library today for some inspiration for the children:

and for me:

Okay, so I confess, I bought this one!

I've also seen that this is going to be released soon:

It doesn't look like it contains anything out of the ordinary but the illlustrations make it a desirable tome nonetheless.

On an additional note, I may become a tad more boring than normal as I've decided what I would like for my forthcoming BIG birthday later in the year!  Hubby has been asking for a while what I fancied and I've toyed with lots of ideas; massive diamond ring etc before finally making up my mind this week! 

Are you ready.....?!

Yes, I'm having!!!!!!!

Am quite very, very, very excited about this, and am planning and plotting all sorts of things already.  If anyone has any tips or advice, do let me know.  I can't wait for us to be able to go away in it and have lots of family fun!

Til the next time!

G x

Tuesday 4 June 2013

Crafty fair

This weekend I made the two hour journey south to visit my parents and browse around the Milton Keynes Handmade and Vintage Fair.  Divine!  This is the second event they have had this year and the next one is in September.  It's a FREE event with around 120 stalls of handmade and vintage goodies to spend your pennies on.  If you fancy a visit, check out their website here

I didn't spend too much money, though I think I could probably have done so had I not had two girlies traipsing around with me, with their only desire being to visit the Build a Bear Workshop!

I met an adorable lady though who was taking part in her last fair.  She was determined not to go home with anything after the closing day on the Sunday, and was practically giving away her stuff.  She was almost in tears at the prices she was selling everything for, and asked me if I would go back the next day to bag the remaining goodies.  If I hadn't had to go back home that evening I'd have been there like a shot.

I did get these goodies from her, for the pricely sum of £6!

Beautiful dish

Fabric snippets

Laura Ashley curtain

I also saw lots and lots of people walking around with headscarfs on so decided to spend almost as much money again on buying the perfect one.  I found this one from Ava and Arthur in the most adorable fabric combination.  If you like what you see, she has a facebook page

Surprisingly hubby didn't comment when he saw me wearing said hair accessory and I think I may now be making some more.

A quick trip to Asda for bits also saw me snap up these gorgeous shoes in the children's wear department - I'm so glad they go up to a size 6 now!

In the meantime I'm catching up on a bit of crochet, I've been working on my puff daisy squares and I'm going to turn them into a little bit of bunting (for when I finally get to reclaim my summer house/sewing room).  I've also been flicking through this beautiful book which I picked up in the library

Am loving the gypsy caravan!

The sun seems to finally be shining, thank goodness, so maybe Summer is finally here (or is it Spring as I don't think we've had that yet)?! 

And finally, thank you and welcome to my new followers, it's great to meet you!

G x