Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Grab a cuppa!

Hello bloggers, and a very special welcome if you've hopped across here from my lovely friend Rachel's blog *waves hello frantically!* I hope you like what you see enough to follow/bookmark me, and then I'd love to come nosy at your own blog (I love blog hopping, but then who doesn't?!)

Anyway, I just wanted to pop on quickly and a) say hello and b) share with you a couple of quick creations I have made for a group birthday surprise swap (hmmm, I hope my recipient doesn't read this!)

First up is this cute coffee cup cosy, which I first intended to make for Harry's teacher as her end of year gift - and I still will, but for now, this one is for the birthday girl (actually, it's her half birthday as her actual birthday is Christmas Day!)

I made it with ties at the top and bottom and a button and buttonhole through the handle to make it nice and secure and fitting well. I'm so pleased with it as I didn't follow a pattern, I just adapted it to fit the shape of the cup as I went along. I probably should have written it down though. I bet I won't be able to do another now! But then I guess there's no 'one size fits all' pattern when it comes to knitting a cup cosy as all cups are different.

I also made her a little rose headband too as I know how much she loves her headwear - so I hope this goes down well too.

If you like that, you can see and buy similar but much better hair accessories in Rachel's shop, which I'm very bad for not mentioning yet! Check it out, her things are really lovely and very reasonably priced too.

I'm also now on with my best friend's bridal shrug for her wedding in October, I'd like to complete it in plenty of time so I can make sure it fits when I see her (which isn't often enough as we live too far apart) and alter it if necessary. I'm also still motoring away with my bed runner blanket thingymabobby. And I really MUST get on with that wedding bunting as that big day is now just 5 weeks away, yikes! Then my next project will definitely be one for me, and is inspired by Rachel (as I very often am!). A couple of weeks back she blogged about a new purchase, Cath Kidston's Sew book, which comes with everything you need to make a gorgeous shoulder bag in her beautiful floral fabric. I saw her finished bag and I was straight on Amazon snapping up my own bargain copy. I really can't wait to start, and finish, because the bag (pictured on the front cover below) is just so pretty and perfect for summer.

Right, I really must dash, the new bedroom wardrobes are finally being delivered tomorrow and because of the heat and work commitments we have got absolutely no further with the decorating. So guess what I'll be doing today?!

Back soon :)


Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Baby Talk

No, not me, seriously, just no! But I have been scrapbooking babies again, yay! This time a beautiful days-old baby boy called Taylor. Isn't he gorgeous?!

Ok, so I know what you're thinking. Why is she scrapbooking random babies? Ah, well there's a good reason for that, which I can now reveal. This layout, and the baby girl layout I scrapped a week or so back, with maybe a few others that I've yet to do, will go into frames and on display at a baby fair I'm standing with the portrait photography business I work for and will be offered to clients as a product to buy after their session. The portrait side of the business is still gaining momentum and so I don't think I will be inundated with requests any time soon, but it's something a little different to offer our customers - stunning photographs from a 2010 award-winning portrait photographer (that's my mummy by the way!) captured in a beautiful hand-crafted layout, framed and ready to adorn a nursery or living room wall. I don't know of any other photographer able to offer that, not in Yorkshire anyway.

Actually, this reminds me, I really need to get some recent photos of Alex and Harry scrapped and buy a few extra frames to get my favourite layouts of them on the walls.

So, what else is new? I am taking a very short break from knitting my bed runner blanket to knit a cute pink coffee cup cosy for Harry's teacher as a thank you present for taking care of him during his first year in big school. And she really has looked out for him. So with the end of term fast approaching, plus the fact that he also has three teaching assistants as well, I thought I better make a start on their gifts. I figured cup cosies would be handy as I bet teachers are always being interrupted during their cup of tea or coffee, and these will help keep them hot a bit longer. Must make myself one while I'm at it I think!

Back real soon :)


Sunday, June 27, 2010


Hello Bloggerland. I said I would be back today to share details and photos of the goodies I picked up at Woolfest. So here I am, reporting for duty. There's not much as I'm watching the pennies thanks to the bedroom refurbish and also because I have so much yarn already to use. But here goes.

First up is this lovely King Cole bamboo cotton yarn in fab bright colours. It feels so lush. I think this will make something for Alex, possibly a hat and scarf for winter, I'm not sure yet!

These I was happy to find as I needed smaller needles to knit a baby jacket that's on my to do list and I'm always in need of extra cables. And I was even happier that they came from the online store where I always buy my needles, which had a little stand there, yay! It's (or possibly - check it out as they are the best value with very reasonable p&p.

I also bought a yard of this pretty bargain fabric, which has a lovely subtle shine to it and will no doubt find it's way into a bedroom project shortly. And yeah, I know what you're thinking, fabric? At Woolfest?! That's exactly what I thought too, but hey, I ain't complaining!

And these pretty little stitch markers I just couldn't resist, they're just too cute! Not to mention useful - I have the other two on my bed runner, which is coming along very nicely, in fact I think it doubled in size yesterday with all the coach knitting. Still a long way to go though.

So what has everyone been doing today? Did you watch the big game? Hmmm, probably the less said about that the better huh? I didn't watch it, instead I made the most of the peace and quiet outside to sit in the sunshine with my knitting and a nice cold drink. It was bliss! We've had a good afternoon in the garden with the boys playing on the bouncy castle. It looked a lot like this:

And then came the footie, groan!

Oh well, at least we can all go back to having a life again now. Sigh.


Saturday, June 26, 2010

Woolfest is the best!

Wowee what a day, I am shattered! Today was Woolfest day, which meant a 5.30am start, a drive to meet up with the group from Baa Ram Ewe in Headingley, a coach trip up to Cumbria (taking in the stunning scenery en route) and then being amazed by the wool and yarn on sale. I might have even bought a few little treats at a couple of my existing and new favourite shops, in between the gasping as well as the knitting, chatting, sipping coffee and lunching with my travel buddy Naomi.

And we even made a few furry new friends, including a gorgeous eight-week old lamb (awwwww!) and some alpacas that looked a lot like oversized poodles lol!

We saw some fab crafts (like knitting with fabric and needles that looked like swords!) and met some lovely, interesting and knowledgable people). I can't believe how much we packed into one day! And, although a little tired, we had a fab coach journey back knitting while watching and singing along to Mamma Mia on the tv! I hadn't seen it before and hadn't been too fussed but I quite liked it! And we enjoyed some more lovely views too.

Now it's 10pm, I have been up 17 hours (having only had six hours sleep the night before) so I'm heading off to bed. But I will be back soon with some pictures of today's purchases :)

Friday, June 25, 2010

Project bedroom... and sheep! Baaaaa!

Sorry I haven't blogged in a few days, I have been so busy attending a family wedding (and you don't want to be bored with someone else's wedding photos!), working, looking after the boys, erm, that's about it really, so I feel like I haven't had much to come on here and share with you.

But! Today I can share another sneak peek at my new bedroom project. I got two of these lovely bedside tables on eBay and was a little disappointed at the colour - it can only be described as smoker's yellow, yack! But that turned out to be a good thing as it prompted me to crack open the paint and rummage through my old scrapbook papers to totally transform them into something so pretty that will match the new room. And here we are - do you likey? Me very much likey!

The colour is pashmina - which I think describes the shade perfectly.

Check out those sexy legs!

Imagine those drawer fronts once I have collected and attached the most lovely clear glass pumpkin-style knobs - to match the gorgeous dressing table I'm going to paint in the same colour - happy sigh!

I had started to struggle with the new decor and making sure the different elements all tied in, but I found the most inspiring and useful website ever and now I'm planning more handmade items for the room than Kirsty Allsopp has in her entire home lol! Anyway, you simply have to check out the Ideal Home magazine website gallery - but be warned, you might lose a few hours of your day in there! Don't say I didn't warn you, that's all!

And, just in case you'e still here I've changed my mind, I am going to bore you with a couple of wedding photos from last weekend, but only because they're of my boys, who looked super cute in their little suits!

Me and Alex (me wearing my hand knitted shrug)

Alex, awwwww, he looks so grown up!

Alex and big brother Harry

Gareth's cousin and his beautiful bride outside the church

The wedding, reception and our hotel were located in the most lovely little villages, Saddlesworth and Marsden, situated somewhere between Huddersfield and Manchester, and I spied some absolutely sweet little shops that I would love to visit (sadly they were all closed on the Sunday, sob!). I think as it's not that far away at all we will go visit next time we have a free sunny Saturday and I can't wait. Saying that, this Saturday is looking pretty exciting! I'm going to Woolfest, woo hoo!

So, providing I remember to take my trusty little camera I will be back sometime over the weekend to report back. Eeeeeeeeeeep, lovely views of the Cumbrian countryside and shopping for scrummy soft yarns, yay, I can't wait!

Friday, June 18, 2010

In other news...

It's been a hectic ol' week, yet again. Alex came down with chicken pox overnight on Sunday, so my hopes of resuming normality come Monday morning were totally dashed and instead of enjoying a return to working days I've had to play nurse to an energetic and not-at-all poorly toddler in quarantine (otherwise known as our house) before going off to work in the evening. And if that weren't tiring enough, we've also had to empty our bedroom ready for the new carpet being laid. I am shattered. We were supposed to have the decorating done before the new carpet went down yesterday but it just wasn't possible. And chances of getting any crafting done have been slim. Anyhoo the carpet looks fabby, as does my gorgeous new dressing table and mirror which are now taking pride of place on it (but need re-painting so everything matches and looks fresh). As for the decorating, that will have to resume (extremely carefully) next week.

I don't think I've blogged in almost a week (ooops, bad Natalie, very sorry!) so I haven't shared my experience of a little trip to Texere Yarns in nearby Bradford. Oh wow! It's not just a yarn shop, it's an entire yarn warehouse! No! Make that yarn heaven! It's huge! Here it is from the outside.

I wish I'd had more pennies to spend, and I'll certainly be rushing back when I do. I also wish I didn't take both hyperactive boys with me, but I don't suppose I could have left them home alone (could I?! Lol!) I did manage to buy a couple of balls of aran wool though to make Harry's teacher a little mug cosy as a thank you for teaching him this year. Anyone who lives near enough to visit, go, you must go! Everyone else, don't get too disappointed as you can order online, hurrah!

What else have I been up to? Hmmmm. Well something very exciting happened yesterday! The postman woke me up at just before 7am (not happy) to deliver a big box of freebie goodies for the kids (very happy!). We had been invited to a CBeebies Timmy Time event in London, but I feared it was too far to take both boys, so instead the kind organiser sent them a box of goodies containing Timmy Time jigsaws, DVD, poseable characters, mini books and this super cute Timmy bag, which Harry adores, as well as a huge bottle of Fairy and fabric conditioner - which was much appreciated as we had just run out of washing powder and I couldn't go out and buy more thanks to the chicken pox.

The mini books are a giveaway promotion with certain packs of Fairy - so guess what I'll be stocking up on later! Thank you kind people at Fairy/Timmy Time :)

Talking of Timmy, that fluffy little lamb has reminded me of a few things. One is my trip to the wool festival next Saturday, which I so can't wait for! (Hmmm, I wonder if Harry will lend me his new bag to take along to meet the real sheep, lol!) And also of my knitting. My blanket is coming along really nicely and hopefully the several hours on the coach next weekend will help no end. I'll try pop back with pictures very soon.

Actually I will be back really soon as I have a lovely scrapbook layout to share with you too, not of my boys, but of a gorgeous baby girl and I have a little bit of exciting news to go with it so check back :)

Natalie x

Friday, June 11, 2010

60 Minute Makeover - or not!

Ok. Maybe it was a tad unrealistic trying to get our bedroom completely transformed (I'm talking everything new, carpet, furniture, decor, soft furnishings, accessories, and more) in like a week but the dream of my swish new boudoir is being dragged out longer than I'd like, sob. The blame lies with the wardrobes, which aren't now being delivered until the end of this month, and seeing as the new carpet goes down next week this is a problem (I know what you're thinking, but please stay with me!). So we have to clear the room completely for the carpet fitters, which means goodbye rickety old wardrobes, and hello clothes strewn everywhere for a fortnight. Also we can't put our new bed together until we have built the new wardrobes as otherwise there wouldn't be room, so it's either put it up, take it down, put it up again or sleep on the matress on the floor. Sigh. I bet Linda Barker and Laurence Llewenyn Bowen what-his-face don't have to put up with these difficulties! (Not really sure any of this is relevant, apologies people!)

Anyway, these delays have given me extra time to make and buy lots of lovely things for the new room. First up is this fab wire half mannequin which is currently looking adorable on the back of the door (although I'm undecided as to whether this is her permanent new home yet).

I have also made a couple more cushions using my bargain Market offcuts and some lovely fat quarters I have been stashing for this purpose.

Please admire my lovely new shimmery wallpaper in the background, it's soooo preeeeeetty!

Next up I need to go to this fab huge fabric shop I just discovered and buy the lovely cream fabric for my floaty curtains (they'll be more pretty than practical, but then that's what blinds are for - I'll be making those too!) and best of all it's only £2 per metre, woo hoo! Not sure that's all I'll come out with though lol, I am too weak!

I also have some really cute frames to paint with the fab slightly metallic paint I have, and if the vintage pieces of furniture I have bought don't match in colour they might also get the same treatment. Busy busy! Hopefully I'll have more photos soon.

In the meantime, as a reward for getting to the end of this extremely long and terribly dull post, here are the promised photos of my gran's new teacup terrier puppy Charlie.

All together now, awwwwwwwwwwwwwww!!!

Back soon, happy crafting :)