Friday, December 24, 2010

Christmas wishes

It doesn't seem like 6 months has passed since I began to blog, so much has happened in that time. Now its Christmas and we are altogether as DS managed to escape the UK before the snow closed the airports. He did have a little adventure just before hand though! he and friends were caught in mud flats in the estuary in Exmouth in their canoes and were rescued by the Air sea rescue helicopter and land crews. They all had mild hyperthermia which has now turned into bronchitis.... silly boy!

I would like to send everyone very good wishes for the festive season and hope however you celebrate you and your families have a great time

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Time disappearing

Another week has disappeared - having started in June with Judith's christmas crafting I thought I would be more organised??! never mind, the decorations are out of the loft and some have been put up, more to go. We won't bring the christmas tree in until next weekend, just before DH's birthday, then with DS here it will be fun to dress it together. We bought a rooted tree last year and it has survived, but we don't want to stress it too much.

MIL enjoyed her stay and DH escorted her back to the uk last flight on Friday night and returned on the first flight Saturday morning - good job Gatwick has an all night lounge.
Not much crafting going on but I did finish the borders of this cushion for SIL birthday so MIL could take it back with her. SIL chickens are a little tempremental so it was quite topical.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Constitution Day

At last the winds are from the south, Africa and they are warm! Yesterday was a national holiday here, Constitution Day, so we took MIL to Calpe for lunch. It was extremely busy the spanish are very family orientated and all get together for these occasions. After a stroll to the beach we had a wonderful fish lunch with such variety. MIL was so surprised at having to remove her cardi as she was so warm and couldn't believe standing on the beach in 20c in December. The temperatures drop quite dramitically around 4pm when everyone dons their coats, but a lovely day.

This is the Ifach, it quite dominates the skyline for miles around. There is a path winding its way up the rock, then it disappears inside to emerge on the other side. DD and DS have climbed this, but I believe its not for the faint hearted, even if the views are stunning once you reach the top.

Friday, December 3, 2010


Ooh its cold! . DH only just squeezed out of the UK and was on one of the last planes to leave the snow bound country. MIL thinks its positively warm compared to her minus temperatures. Amazing how quickly you become aclimatized to the warmer weather here.

DD presented me with these beautiful flowers just before her hospital trip, the scent was heavenly and even after the lillies wilted the remaining flowers are still going strong. In fact I have my eye on the tiny flowers as these will look great in my 1/12th scale miniature garden.

I finished my waistcoat

and this beanie which was primarily if we go skiing this year, but I think with this cold snap it may be coming into use earlier.

Lots of people have mentioned they have already put up their christmas decs, haven't even rescued ours from the loft yet, perhaps a little job for hubbie today?!
Happy stitching x

Tuesday, November 30, 2010


Firstly I would like to thank everyone for your lovely comments, they all created a warm glow and a blanket of friendship. Please forgive me if I haven't replied individually.

This last week has sent some hard challenges and some minor ones and others that can be considered an irritation, even if it brings you out in a rash (g), through out it all what has sustained me? stitching!

I finished my waistcoat (knitted), a little stitcherie, bought christmas pressies and started a more complex piece of stitching. Unfortunately I have as yet not conquered the process of taking piccies off the camera and onto the computer, but it is a process that DH loves so hey!! but then he went to the UK to escort MIL out for a visit, hence no piccies......yet!

DD under went her surgery, it was not without its own dramas, but the end result is very positive and each day she gains a little more in recovery. As the nurse said, mama's here! nothing more to say.

Tomorrow is another day with its good fortune and positive outlook, and now DH is home, maybe a few piccies lol

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Cross stitch projects

Today is part two of chookblue's cross stitch projects, what I forgot about was the time difference, so I am 'late' but have put some piccies up anyway. You seem to ignore them, taking them for granted being on the walls and it was only when looking at what to post that I realised how many there were, so I didn't want to bore you and chose a few.

When I saw this pattern is was so a must have - possibly every crafters sentiment!?

Another Lavender and Lace with the Angel of Hope, I stitched this one at the same time as secretly stitching the Angel of Summer for DD so that I could use it as a distraction for her as she used to return home from college and come looking to see what I was stitching.

This one I thought depicted a lovely scene and at the time we had just been given some geese and had chickens at the farm.

Hardanger, another technique I really enjoy

I adapted this pattern to personalise it for my parent's 50th golden wedding anniversary, they were really pleased with it and it used to sit on their sideboard.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Lovely morning

This morning we went to Jalon where we had arranged to meet Sheila for coffee. Sheila had contacted me after finding my blog and we found we lived within the same area of Spain. We had a lovely morning chatting and filling in the spaces of who, what, where and Sheila's sister Pam came along too, so it was really nice to meet them both. it was so nice to chat with like minded ladies, especially as Sheila loves doing the stitcheries and cross stitch amongst other things. So I am grateful for blogger for my new found friend.

This wall hanging is using some of the sashico patterns, although it is hard to see the gold thread in the borders, and the birds were made using applique rather than stitching. The beautiful central material was from a pair of pj's, so a little repurposing here too.

Off to take some more piccies of some cross stitching to join in on the second part of chookyblue's

Monday, November 15, 2010

Some finishes

Feeling in the christmassy mood, I finished this mantle swag today, a pattern from Wee folk Art, a little more for christmas. It looked good on the mantle but it was too dark inside for the photo

It was such a lovely day, warm and bright, it was a shame to miss it, so headed outside where I finished off this little cross stitch project.

Then tackled the cable border of a waistcoat I have been knitting, I hadn't been looking forward to this part of the pattern, but with a little concentration it wasn't as hard as I thought. Certainly a little more challenging than k1 p1 beanies.

Friday, November 12, 2010

Cross Stitch

Joining in on Chookyblue's cross stitching, thought I would show a small selection of pictures, this one was stitched by a family member way back in 1831 when she was 8 years old. Although it was showing signs of wear it was professionally framed several years ago in the hope of preserving a little piece of our family history. Definiately an heirloom

This one, although not in the same league follows the same lines

The Earth Dancer - I began this one when we came over to Spain as at the time we did not know where we would be or living and I needed something to concentrate on

The Angel of Summer was stitched for DD's 18th birthday in June 2003, I managed to stitch this whilst she was at college, although once or twice she nearly caught me out by returning home early. It took me three months and was only just finished in time.

Somehow, cross stitch is always the one to fall back on, no matter what other projects are in the pipe line. Although these days I draw the line at 28 hpi rather than using 40 hpi silk.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Girlie day out

I had a lovely girlie day out with DD, the weather was very bright and sunny, albeit nippy up here as we headed off into Calpe about 1/2 hours drive away. We had a good mooch around a new (to us) chinese bazaar, where they seem to sell all those items you just can't find out here, we did a couple of errands, headed to the shoe shop and we were both lucky enough to buy some boots. Then over to Casa, this is a lovely home shop, selling wonderful arrays of candles and holders, decor items that make a statement, glassware, and crockery with a mediterranian feel.
This time of year they have all their christmas decorations and I do like to add a little something to our collection each year. Although DD gave me a compliment telling me I could make most of them but even better. Maybe she is biased (g). The first Christmas we were here, I gaily bowled over to Casa in December only to find everything had been sold/packed away and gone, it was then I realised November was the month to note the diary.

Feeling a little weary and in need of lunch, we headed over to the port side of the town where we meandered along in the now warm sunshine, looking at the restaurants. Trouble is you are accosted as you go by zealous waiters trying to entice you, we were offered free sangria whilst we browsed the menu and the wonderful iced displays of sea food platters. These are quite spectacular and can get up to 180 euros for a platter for 8 people. Hmmm we settled for the menu del dia for 9 euros.
Would you believe this was for 3 courses, including wine and bread. DD chose sole and myself swordfish. Wonderful value

The kittens are growing up fast, but no less nosey and full of mischief, here Amber was caught red pawed as she had been exploring the new miniature shop/house. Don't believe the innocent look.......

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Miniature jewellry and sunsets

A busy week, sadly DS returned to the UK but we look forward to seeing him out again at Christmas. We sent him off with a shopping list for a few christmas goodies.

Today we went to Miniature club, we have a different venue, the Cultural centre in Pedregur, its quite a way for us but very nice. We had a split group with some finishing off the jewellry chest with DH and the others making the tiny jewellry with me. It was a very nice morning, as a group it was decided to make a street for an exhibition, the Victorian period was chosen, with everyone deciding on their own scene or shop. One way to while away the winter hours!?

We have been caught in the tail end of a weather system that covered the southern half of the UK, its been blowing a gale up here, trees bending, plant pots whizzing about, its amazing how winds like this suck out the water in the pool. Suddenly there was an eerie glow and DH caught the sunset behind the Casita and our summer kitchen.

Then towards the mountain

I had a lovely surprise in our post box today, a pattern from Cheryl Goss from Willowberry Designs. I was lucky enough to receive this from one of her giveaways, so thank you Cheryl. I tried to take a piccie but after all the excitment of the sunsets the camera had died so I must wait for it to charge.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010


Fun was had by all at the Halloween party, with many in costume, fire eaters and more. It was held in caves which added to the spookyness.

Monday we all went for lunch at one of the restaurants on the other side of the mountain, its quite a climb even in the car, but at the top the views are quite spectacular. The day was bright, sunny and clear and we could see the islands of Ibiza and Majorca in the distance. The lads had already decided to try the traditional Moroccan tagine, which you have to preorder as it takes a long time. It is a type of slow cooker, made from clay and glazed. The funnel style lid fits inside the rim of the base and all the condensation created returns to the pan, this one was lamb with spices, huge raisins and whole almonds, absolutely scrummy.

I thought I would show a little clutch bag I made using the cut away method with layers of different coloured organza, with bead embellishment. The base material was a satin skirt of my Mum's, so I suppose that's a little repurposing too. I was lucky enough to have been given button blanks in various sizes so I did beaded buttons for a bit of bling.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Creepy Crawlies

DD and DS are off to an all night party, DD was pleased with the little touches to the hat and liked her clock made from offcuts of fluorescente greens, orange, yellows.
The little pumpkins were made from wool and the dark spider from mohair.

This little chap crawled his way on to the hat too

This one is looking after a little book of spells which will probably hang from the hat as well

I have been working on this miniature mat in between other projects, but at last it's finished and ready for one of the rooms in the house. I designed the pattern then changed the borders as I wanted to make it larger. I was quite pleased with the end result, even if I do say so myself lol

Friday, October 29, 2010

Kantha Elephant

It's been another sunny day here, although the evenings are getting really chilly, we have already started lighting the log burner at night. DS has been a great help with the garden, especially in the veggie patch where he uncovered 14 pumpkins, an aubergine and a bucket full of green tomatoes ready for some chutney making.

I have posted another Indian Kantha project, where I used sheesha mirrors and beads, I mounted it on an artists board ready for framing.

Today I have been making hallowen projects as DD came home last night and upon presenting me with a bag of offcuts asked if I could make something for the party she is going to tomorrow.
At least she gave me a days notice, usually its that afternoon.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Recycling carrier bags

When we are all trying to do our bit with regard to recycling it can be quite challenging to think outside the box and repurposing items. We do this quite alot when making the miniatures, small round plastic tops from toiletries can be turned into little foot stools, or the strong card from the cat food boxes make ideal panels for sofas, we have a box of not sure what to use it for but it will be used lol.

One way to recycle plastic carrier bags is to turn them into a fabric. They must be the strong ones and not the flimsy supermarket ones and ones that have writing on them can produce an exciting surreal piece. Mixing colours and thicknesses or perhaps adding other components like wax crayon shavings add to the texture. Protected heat and you have your textural form. The plastic performs in it's own way so you never know what will be the end result.

The idea for this project formed when the 'fabric' reminded me of a coral type of formation. To raise the various sea structures I used a variety of items, large button for the sea web, melon seeds (washed!) for the fish, a dried kidney bean and even a piece from a pop out pill packet.

Then doodle with the threads.

This bag is made from ordinary kitchen cling film. This time trapping fancy yarn between the sheets and applying heat. It is surprisingly durable.

Making fabric from newspaper is another fun thing to do, but maybe I'll keep that for another time lol.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Kantha and Sheesha embroidery

Life has been throwing its large rocks again this last week but it seems things have returned to normal. We had a lovely day yesterday as it was DS's birthday, he was 30 - how did that creep up? the years seem to have flown. We celebrated with family and friends with a lovely lunch at our local restaurant and a very enjoyable evening.

I was asked by Sheila, my new found fellow stitcher, what was Kantha embroidery so I thought I would put up a couple of pics. The basis of Kantha is a running stitch, rather like Sashico but usually using finer threads, especially silk. I love the rhythm of doing this kind of embroidery as you can get lost in its simplicity, the stitches seemed to flow and go where they want, they certainly did on this one as I just made it up as I went along. I incorporated the sheesha glass which gave it more interest.

A Bushkiri Bag

Sheesha glass pouch

I also wanted to thank everyone who has left such nice comments.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Mini meeting

We had an enjoyable meeting with the miniature club and they carried on making the jewellry chest that DH designed, to be finished next month where they want me to make the jewellry to go inside the chest. I have already made a few items but need to get my thinking cap on.

The chocolate mayonese cake was well received. Its a really easy cake to make as eggs and butter are substituted by the mayonese, hadn't made this for a long time, so was pleased it turned out ok. I was very remiss though and forgot to take a photo - again! DH made his lovely cheese scones so everyone was well fed.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Just put the post up and sure enough double clicking works, now I know what to do when I come across piccies hopping around on various blogs.

Stitching and baking

I had a nice comment left by Sheila, who it seems, is in my neck of the woods, amazing how blogland can bring people together who would otherwise never know they were there. Still not sure of the protocol of answering comments, so sorry if I have neglected anyone and thank you for your comments.

Yesterday I received a surprise, DH went to the post, his second outing since his adventure and when he returned there was a package from Australia. Well I really don't know how, but with all the curfuffal of the last two weeks I had completely forgotten that Judith had awarded me a prize for the number of gifts completed in her Early Bird Christmas crafting. This is what I received, isn't it pretty?

I finished my bird cage from Alli, little difficult to see but I added two colours of seed beads as flower buds. DH assures me that if we double click on the piccie it will enlarge when its uploaded, ok, we'll see. I finished the stitching part whilst waiting in the hospital with DH to see theconsultant who was running 55 mins late, so whilst I did receive some funny looks at least I was spared watching a spot on the wall for an hour.

DH decided to go flying with his radio controlled model planes this morning, so I decided to do a little baking. I tried a spinach and bacon quiche with a little goats cheese sprinkled on it, made many quiches before in previous years but never tried it with soya milk. We have an intolerance to dairy produce so have to either go without or substitute and hope for the best. Pleased to say that the soya mik behaved very well and the usual sweetness did not come through in the quiche, so bouyed by this I made fruit pies and a chocolate mayo cake, although that's for tomorrow when we host this months miniature club. Will have to be up early to put the frosting on.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Gota Fria

Our gota fria (which means cold drop) came and went, we managed to keep the power but lost internet and tv stations, we also got a nice top up for our water deposito and although some damage the garden managed to escape quite well.
Travelling down the mountain we came across some rock falls and tree damage but not as severe as previous years. DD and I had an appointment to attend in Denia, a town about 3/4 hour drive away, this place will flood with ease, but again all was well. On our return we decided to treat ourselves to a girlie lunch out and found a nice bar/restaurant in a little village with tiny streets and tall buildings. Note to self, remember to pick your camera up!
We had a very enjoyable menu del dia and whiled away a couple of hours chatting and enjoying each others company, with the promise to do it again very soon.

We are so looking forward to Sunday as DS will be coming out for his birthday, it is so nice to be all together.

Not having anything new to show you, I thought I would put up this project, 'The Tree' - another Stumpwork, using wrapped wires, beads and even some angora goat fleece which I saved from the shearing when being in Devon and we kept them on the farm, but that's a completely different story.

I did try my hand at spinning but with a thousand other things to do/try found it wasn't really my thing, well that's my excuse and I'm sticking to it lol

Monday, October 11, 2010

Some stitching at last

Well who would believe its over a week ago that we had our little adventure down the mountain. DH is being very good about not driving although still feeling sore and bruised is better. DD is supporting too by getting groceries as she goes outing and abouting.

I would like to say a big thank you to Fiona of Bubzrugz who came to my rescue about how to put buttons on blogs. As you can see it worked and I now have a button for the Simply christmas.

At last some stitching, ok WIP's but at least something has been accomplished, the little angel was from Lynette Anderson Designs, a little kit I purchased from Judith Tetley when she was having her sale. Not quite sure how to finish her off (if you know what I mean) but I'm sure something will suddenly have a light bulb moment

This little project was from Willowberry Designs - one of a series of BOM's which I have saved but have only finished this one - one of these days I will take a deep breath and get my head around making a quilt - I must admit I favour smaller projects, but the more I wander around blogland and see all these wonderful quilts the more I want one.

I saw this in Judith's sale and couldn't resist it for my SIL - she is training to be an animal healer and has various pets including Grace and Audrey who, I believe, at times appear haughty and just will not lay. Cannot decide whether to finish this as a wall hanging or cushion cover............

At last a couple of finished items, little stocking fillers, the rabbit needle case will be for SIL as she has a house rabbit.

I also made a couple of lavender rice bags for DD for her to use in her work as eye masks. She is a holistic and beauty therapist and wanted them to gently warm and use with her clients to help them relax into their treatments. If she wants a guinea pig I will be the first to put my hand up lol

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Help please!

What a hectic few days! DH was whisked away by ambulance on Sunday and admitted to hsopital that evening, hooked up to various drips and an impending visit to theatre planned for the Tuesday. We often remark how bumpy the journey is in the car using our mountain road, after travelling in the ambulance, at speed, I don't think we will moan again. The road twists and turns as it zig zags down, in many places almost single track or for two if you are careful in squeezing. Must admit it was the fastest we had ever been through our town's high street, sirens screaming, through red lights, cars scuttling out of the way, an experience in itself. After a 35 minute ride we were pleased to arrive.
Anyway after a few days of trial and tribulations, DH is safely home, sore, restricted, but feeling so much better. No stitching done but I did trace out the bird cage design from Allie, so hopefully a little relaxing and stitching is what is needed now.

Can any one help me please?!!!
I have tried unsuccessfully to add a button to my blog, as I want to join in Kerryanne's Simply christmas. How do I do it? also how do I put a link to someone elses blog as I see many of you do?

Hope someone out there can point me in the right direction................................

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Bits n bobs

Today was the last day of Judith's EBCC, as usual there were some fabulous projects and worthy winners. I have really enjoyed taking part in this and seeing all the wonderful ideas others have and their lovely work and Judith worked really hard bringing us ideas and inspiration. Thank you.

Yesterday we wandered into the older historical part of our nearest town, with it's very narrow streets, colourful buildings and cobbled steps, it was really pretty and we found some interesting little shops. One was selling wool, amongst other things, although not a great selection I did buy a very colourful ball to make a beanie for a christmas stocking present. Just as we were leaving I spied some Perle thread and Anchor skeins and although again expensive, I now know where to go if I run out.

Today I continued with my miniature garden, I had put this on hold whilst awaiting further supplies and for life to slow down a little. The garden will be for the front of our miniature house.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

EBCC September Challenge

Well only a few more days and then September will be gone, I'm sure time must be going faster.
Here are a couple more items for the EBCC, these little trees would look cute as a table decoration, (I found the pattern on wee folk art) a nice little project when you want something to do in the evening without it being too taxing

A fabric bowl, lightweight, ideal for picnics

I decided to use Stumpwork for Judith's September challenge Inspired by nature. It's hard to see in the photo but the mushrooms are needlelace created over a former to give it a hollow 3D look.

The rest are basically french knots by tweeding the threads