Though I've not had time to sit down and put together a proper blog post for ages (as those of you who are bloggers yourselves will know, this stuff takes time! Take the photos, edit them, resize them, label them, upload them, write something interesting, proofread it, etc...) I have been sharing some snaps over on my new Instagram account.
I thought it would be nice to do a monthly round-up of the photos I shared on Instagram that didn't make it onto my blog. This way those of you who don't follow me on Instagram won't miss out, and I can waffle to my heart's content about what I've been up to instead of having to confine myself to a short and snappy caption that I've slooooowly typed on my smartphone keyboard (it's taking me a while to get used to that thing!!).
So, what did I get up to at the end of April?
I can rarely resist a nice bit of stationery and fell head over heels with this "Enchanting Forest" letter-writing set designed by Helen Dardik for Roger la Borde. Isn't it lush? As well as using it to write letters (of course) I've also been using the stickers to decorate other bits of post. So much prettiness.
Walking to the postbox a few days later, floral-sticker-covered-post in hand, it was lovely to spot these wildflowers growing along a fence. All those little specks of blue! Delightful.
Talking of flowers... I finally stitched the last few flowers onto this cushion which has been a work in progress for a while now. Have I found the time to take photos of the finished cushion? I have not. I must remember to actually do that because I am really rather chuffed with how this turned out. Although - I have to confess - I'm actually thinking about maybe adding some embroidery to this as well. I might leave it for a few months and see how I feel as that will be yet another time-consuming project to add to my To Make list!
When I'm sewing or doing other non-writing work, I listen to the same albums over and over. In late April I was listening to this one on repeat. I've had this tape for 25 years and still love it!
Escaping from my studio/office for a morning, I took a trip to Fabric Land to buy supplies for a couple of work projects. Fabric Land is not (sadly) a magical Narnia-esque world of fabric and enchanted haberdashery creatures but is actually a really great chain of sewing shops. They're an absolute treasure trove of stitch-y supplies and have helpful staff and a legendary website that's straight out of 1998. While I was in town I also popped into the knitting shop next door to buy some white yarn for my mini patchwork squares blanket. Online shopping is super convenient but nothing beats being able to buy what you need in a local shop.
I do a lot of working on things behind the scenes that I can't talk about, so it's always a joy when I get to finally spill the beans on a project. The six projects I contributed to Banners, Buntings, Garlands & Pennants were so much fun to make!
I gave one of these copies to my mum (she has a whole collection of books featuring my work) and the other now sits on what I half-jokingly refer to as "my ego shelf". The shelf is an ego-boosting collection of books by me, books featuring my projects, plus other nice things like the first magazine to ever feature my work in print and the photo book I made filled with six years of crafty photos.
I was completely obsessed with books when I was a kid, I spent so much time reading and dreamt of a day when I would have a house of my own with its own library (a whole room! filled with books!). Now I'm a grown up, I may not have the library I hoped for when I was a kid but a shelf of books I've been involved in creating is possibly even better.
My inner book nerd was also thrilled to spot myself (and the other contributors) listed in the index of Banners, Buntings, Garlands & Pennants. I've never been in an index before!
I work from the sofa a lot when I've got a large amount of sewing to do - it's so comfy, and my assistant keeps me company while I sew...
You can tell I was busy with work as I kept making tea and forgetting to drink it! This was the third cup that had gone cold that day as I rushed around drawing and stitching and writing and taking photos.
Part of the reason I was rushing about was to get ready for a trip to Northumberland with my mum. Planning trips in advance is very necessary, but they don't always fit in well around deadlines when the time rolls round!
We had some craaaazy weather on our trip, even for England. It hailed, it snowed, it rained, it was sunny, it hailed again! All the weather, all crammed into a few days. This was the view from our hotel room one afternoon...
... and this was the view on the coast just a couple of days later! Chilly, yes, but gorgeously bright and clear.
I will, of course, be blogging about our visit to Northumberland as soon as I've got the photos edited. We were only there for a few days but we visited so many great places, I'm really looking forward to sharing them with you guys.
P.S. Follow me on Instagram for regular, colourful updates!