Tuesday, 20 October 2015

September into Autumn

September was an ideal month to spend a week in the Lake district, the end of summer thankfully weather was perfect.


The views of the lakes and mountains were breath taking!


Amazing Food
The food was more than tasty!


Being woken every morning by the handsome chap above not so great, but that's what happens when you stay on a farm!

Places to visit Stott Park Bobbin Mill.
Then we spent a few days in Malham,Yorkshire and a visit to Yarndale, plenty of lovely wool and lots of projects to keep me occupied over the cold winter months.

October National Trust Rainham Hall opened and the Material Girls exhibition was launched, not quite how we planned in the Brew House. The work is in the main house, mine is in the fireplace in one of the rooms on the first floor.

Delft Tiles

Georgian Coffee

Georgian coffee in the Lloyds Coffee house, I'm sticking to Latté in the cafe!


Conkers to collect one of the lovely things about Autumn!


It's not been all holidays and food I also managed some patchwork.

Sunday, 30 August 2015

I've been trying to......

..... write a post for quite a while, ( looking at the drafts there have been four attempts since the beginning of this year)  for some reason or another It's not happened!!!! Why? To be honest I can't say why not, it's not that I have been sitting idly twiddling my thumbs, I've just not felt inspired. I have been reading others posts but not always commenting. Like me most blogs I read also post on Facebook and I catch up with them there and just pressing the like button is so easy. I have been keeping the Material Girls blog, Website and Facebook upto date so maybe it meant I was spending my time on those rather than here, now I'm back and feel that I want to blog again so here goes......

Since my last post I've completed my City and Guilds Certificate in Patchwork and Quilting with Janice Gunner, it took me Three Years instead of the Two that I hoped it would. That's because I did have a lot of other things going on and I couldn't dedicate as much time as I should have to it, got there in the end though! This is my final project a wall hanging.

There was also another quilt made for my Great Niece Ella, I got the fabric last year in the US on holiday. It's not a great picture but you get the idea! There's also another baby quilt I can't show that one just yet, and also a crochet baby blanket that I forgot to photograph, but I'm going to see Reggie on Tuesday so I'll take a photo and show it next time!

I have been working on a project with The Material Girls for our next exhibition, it's being held at a National Trust property very close to where I live, Rainham Hall. We have all been busy with this project, it's now a waiting game for the Restoration of the house to be completed before we can hang. In the meantime  a sneak preview of a very tiny part of one of my pieces, a lot of hand stitching went into my pieces, that's  my favourite thing to do.

I think your more or less upto date now, I've not mentioned our holiday in North Wales or trips to London, family get togethers, but I'm sure your already getting bored.... So until next time........x

Wednesday, 17 December 2014

Putting on The Ritz!

Hello there, this is a very busy time for everyone. To be honest December is a bit of a nightmare for this family with all four of us having Birthdays in the same month, even though there aren't the children's parties to arrange anymore it seems harder.  It's difficult to get to see the two children (not really children any longer 33 and 29 this year) on their birthdays as they are out with friends and so we grab any opportunity we can and either see them before or after their day.  This year on Dave's birthday the four of us went for Afternoon Tea at the Ritz, nice it was too, very festive with the lavish decorations and the Carolers! With time to kill before our reservation at the Ritz we took a look in Fortnum and Mason, Rachel and James couldn't believe that I'd never been in there before. A few purchases were made so Christmas morning we'll be drinking posh (or expensive)  tea and coffee with our breakfast!

Fortnum and Mason

Cake and Sandwiches

Today I went along with the Material Girls to NT Rainham Hall for an update meeting with the Team at the Hall, take a look at the MG Blog for updates.

Sunday, 23 November 2014

Since my last post......

I've baked......

Visited Yarndale and spent far to much.......

Started a crochet blanket, working slow but sure.....

Finished a City and Guild project and.....

started the next.....

The guy in the Wet Fish shop was a bit mystified when I asked if I could photograph his fish as inspiration for my project. Just as well I'm a good customer!

Watch this space........ or should that be watch this plaice?

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

Up Downs and an Up

I'll start with an up, the city and guilds classes have finished until October (that's not the up) but one of the last lessons was dyeing, something I enjoy. A while ago I dyed some silk scarves and sold a few at the last Material Girls exhibition, but  was left with some that I wasn't happy with,  a good opportunity to have a play with a new idea, using a slinky as a resist. This isn't my own idea it's something I'd seen done by Jenny and asked her about, I think it was a success and I've sold one of the scarves already!

And for the down, if you have a weak stomach look away now.........

It was very hot day far to hot to take Betsy out for a walk before the  evening cooled,  even then only a short walk around  the block, I'd taken her earlier in the morning for a run over the fields before the day heated up. Dave was home that Monday, so we took Betsy out together, I slipped on my flip flops (not my usual foot wear when walking) and off we went for a  leisurely stroll. We met a friend with his two Schnauzers and stopped for a chat. 'What a lovely evening' I said as we passed a house and heard the children playing in their garden, it was just about then I tripped and landed on the pavement, my glasses skidded across the rough ground,  not before the frame had cut into my face. To be honest I don't really know what happened, several people coming to help.  Betsy who usually goes nuts barking when any strangers approach sat there like an angel. I just wanted to stay laying on the floor but Dave insisted  'Let this young man take your other arm'  They both helped me up, which wasn't easy as I was clutching a hanky to my head as apparently I had a bad cut (at this time I didn't realise how bad, I was just doing as I was told). A short walk we were home and sorting out someone to have Betsy, Dave insisted we needed to go to A&E (really that bad?) as most people know a visit to A&E involves a long wait, so Betsy was at a friends for the night. We arrived at 9.20 pm and after an hour or so I was seen by a nurse who said ' that'll need gluing, don't leave before your seen it could get infected'.  So we sat and waited until 1am. with others who moaned, then the group of youngsters who came in on mass with a friend who'd sprain a foot playing a sport and found the whole thing amusing. If your in a better mood and not bleeding and starting to feel the pain of it all, it's a place to people watch. The doctor I saw gave me good and bad news 'Good' not deep 'Bad' as it was along the line of my eyebrow I needed to see someone from the Maxillofacial department, it should be glued! 'Oh just glue it' I said, I just wanted it over. By this time I could really feel the pain in my left leg, and when I looked a bruise and swelling was developing nicely from my knee cap down towards my ankle....... I just wanted to get home to my bed and take some painkillers and cry! After some persuasion from Dave I agreed to return the next morning where a doctor cleaned the cut and put in five very neat stitches, here's the gory bit.

Anyway the stitches are out and its healed very well my sister in law tells me, she's the one that removed the stitches, handy having your own personal nurse. Unfortunately I can't say my leg is healing as well after two weeks the black eye has almost gone but the bruising on my leg is still there and my knee cap is painful to touch. Another week and I have an appointment with the GP, so if it's not better or improving by then I'll mention it. Tomorrow I have an appointment to with the optician, to pick up replacement glasses, at least I'll be able to see without looking through a haze of criss cross scratches. Mind you as a weird textile person the colours have been amazing, although  I wasn't keen on the textures!

OMG if this had happened two weeks earlier I would have been wearing a black eye to match my outfit at a wedding, and yes I was wearing navy blue. It was the fifth wedding in a year, that we've been guests at. Who says weddings aren't happening? And each wedding we've been to has been special and very lovely in their own way, some have been no expense spared and others have been more modest but as I said everyone has been beautiful with lovely people.
 That's it finished on an UP!

Friday, 11 July 2014


I can hardly believe we've been back from our holiday in the USA for almost three weeks. I thought I'd share a few photographs with you, hope your not bored by them.

This holiday took some planning because we were using air miles, so getting the dates took a bit of juggling. It has taken us quite a while to collect enough air mile to fly both ways in upperclass, I must say it was an experience actually laying down and sleeping on a flight, (how the other half live is all I can say!) it then took a time to book the car and hotels independently.

We flew into Boston and spent three nights, we have been to Boston before so this was a chance to repeat some things and a chance to do some things we'd not done before. Always on the list is a visit to the Prudential Centre the views are spectacular.  This time we went on the Boston Tea Party experience, that was good fun, booing and hissing the British and throwing tea over the side of the ship, when we were there before the ship had caught fire so was off limits!

View from the viewing tower Prudential Center

Leaving Boston we drove to Sandwich on Cape Cod, this was a repeat too, and so was the Whale watching but it was just as good as I remembered. Heres just a few of the hundreds of photos we took of the Humpback Whales (I could spend my life watching these amazing creatures)

On the way back to shore we sighted a couple of Basking Sharks they were huge!

Basking Shark

After three days we had a long drive to Syracuse, New York. We made an overnight stop here before continuing onto Niagara Falls and into Canada. Our hotel was next to the falls and the view from our room was amazing, every time you looked out of the window the spray from the falls creates an ever-changing scene.

View from Hotel
 We took a guided coach tour, this included walking down to the bottom of the falls and a trip on the Maid of the Mist, on both of these we both got drenched but it was worth it. All of these were firsts and I would do it again.

Going into the wet areas the guide recommended that we put our cameras, iPhones etc into plastic bags and make a small hole for the lens to stop them getting wet. I must have pressed something because for the rest of the day all my images were black and white, but to be honest I got some really good shots which I'm going to have blown up and framed, not all of these images are mine some are Dave's.

This is the route down to the bottom of the falls

Maid of the Mist

 Then on to Gettysburg, another first, we did all the tourist things and a guided tour of the Battle Fields, we stayed in a B and B called the Brickhouse it was there during the Civil War and there were bullet holes in the back wall. The only problem with Gettysburg is that during the tourist season it gets invaded by Ghost Hunters, they do night walks and all the usual things (not for us), other than that it was a lovely place to visit.  The B and B was lovely and the breakfast was so filling, I've never had dessert at breakfast, we only had it on the first day, Shoofly Pie an Amish dish, well you have to try these things.

Brick House
From there it was onto New York, going there was not a first, but driving through Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens and Flatbush as you can tell we got slightly lost. Once we dropped the car off at the airport and got a cab into the city it was time to relax. We stayed across the road from Central Park, it was lovely to walk in the Park on a hot day. Then after three days it was a cab back to the airport and a flight home, just in time as the temperatures were rising. Of course we did a lot more than I've included here trips to museums and galleries and of course I managed to slip in a couple of visits to quilt shops and even a Quilt Exhibition in Boston. As always though, It's nice to be back!

Flat Iron Building

Central Park

I have so many photos that I could put on here but I must resist........