Tuesday, 31 August 2010

circus skills

I've been a little fascinated by the idea of circus skills lately.  Not so much clowning but definitely balancing acts

little girls practicing their skills so they can run away and join the circus

balancing and tightrope walking

and sprinkling fairy dust

I'll be listing these little coin purses over the next few days on folksy

Saturday, 28 August 2010


I absolutely love this time of year, when the blackberries are out and we can pick our own pudding for free!
how ridiculous that there isn't more fruit for free, we get elderflower and berries for wine and sloes for gin but really that's about it for West Cornwall.  Perhaps there is more in other parts of England, I hope so

it's not just the blackberries, everyone's up for going out for a walk and the insect life is so abundant that Teague gets to use the macro setting on his camera

to startling effect!  Now I know where all those science fiction creatures come from.

and crickets are happy to land on a pair of fuschia leggings, and stay there for quite some time

and we still have flowers.  In fact it almost feels like too much, a last burst before autumn.  Time to get our dusty nature diaries out again I think.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Folksy Friday

Apart from the fact that I love reading and am always putting my book down and losing my page, I am about to embark on an Open University 20th century literature course to complete my mish mash of a degree!  So today's Folksy Friday is bookmarks to keep my place in all the books I have to read...
as ever click to be taken to the lovely shops on Folksy

Millicent SHOP NAME 2

Wednesday, 25 August 2010

Warning: this is a bit of a proud home ed mum rant!

He's going to college to do his 'A' levels

For sixteen years Cain followed his own interests, sometimes (many times) those interests seemed to be lolling around, we didn't follow the curriculum, we never had a timetable, we spent an awful lot of time on the beach...  all in all he has had a very free childhood. 

Last year he decided he wanted to follow an academic route and so went to college to do a fast track gcse course, he could only study four gcse's but we were told that because he was home educated he would be accepted with four passes rather than five.  The course was a steep learning curve, it was meant for people who were retaking rather than someone totally unfamiliar with exams and formal study. 

Yesterday he got his gcse results, four B's and today he was accepted onto his A level choices, english, history, photography and film studies. 

When we began home educating we didn't know what kids did when they got to sixteen, especially if they were really academic.  We tried to trust our instincts,  we knew we didn't like the national curriculum and we were hopeless at being formal about education.  There have been times of stress, definitely times of 'should we be making him do ...' .  Today I feel as though it was all worth it.  We are still home educating our other two children but it feels so much easier now.

I think it's helpful for other home educators to know that children don't need 13 gcse's to get into college to do A levels and that it is possible to do what's needed in a very short time if necessary. 

Our other two may not choose college, each child is a different journey, but right now we really feel that our children can do anything they want to do, with or without school.

Wednesday, 18 August 2010

away for a few days

we're off to the north to visit family and to drop my oldest with my sister, they are flying to San Francisco on Sunday to stay with my other sister (I am extremely envious!).  My shop will stay open (as I can still send orders out) but I won't be blogging or uploading until next week.  Hope you have a lovely long weekend.

rainy days and djeco

this blurry picture is showing the most gorgeous craft sets that Annis received for her birthday from this shop.  There is a stamping set, a stencilling set and a paint by numbers set. 

the stencilling set comes with a book of suggestions

and cards showing how to make patterns starting with a single motif

or you can totally do your own thing

it feels like a lesson in textile designing.  And there are plenty of the images to work on.  In fact, I think once you finish the images you would be ready to make your own.  The set comes with the most high quality double ended felt pens with a brush pen at the other end.  I can't recommend it enough!

The second set is a stamping set.  Again the images are beautiful (my favourite is the tightrope walker above) gorgeous stamps and red, gold and purple stamp pads. 

This also comes with a book of suggestions, but you don't have to follow it.  I was worried that this wouldn't entertain us (how could I resist trying it!) but it did, it's just as delightful as the first set and we took an hour to complete one picture each.  Annis also got a paint by numbers set from the same company and again the images are beautiful and the paints good quality but she hasn't tried it yet so I will blog about it when she has.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010

needle books

needle books 001, originally uploaded by glassmountain.
I really love little purses and cases for all those little crafting bits and bobs. Needle books and pincushions are particular favourites, so today I've been making needle books.

these have a little button closure at the back (my favourite kind of closure for some unknown reason) and do you see my new printed label there.  I'm not sure how I feel about the font but it does look so much more professional (well maybe!)

these pages are linen and cotton ( I ran out of felt and had to rethink, but I like these pages.)

and the embroidery is a little rabbit picking flowers, I got to use my gorgeous red linen thread from fog linen
for the flowers and around the edge.  I have made another with a little girl embroidery and felt pages.  Both are listed on folksy.

Monday, 16 August 2010

this could be seen as a little showy offy but... rains in Cornwall such a lot that sometimes we're left wondering why we live here.  and then a day like this arrives, out of the blue

and we remember why.

this particular beach is our favourite, we used to live nearer to it, now we have to drive for half an hour and i can't remember the last time we went to it ... until today

we actually ummed and ahhed, we only had three hours (and there's a half hour walk down after the half hour drive), it's a long way...

but i'm soooo glad we made the effort (we stayed longer and were late back, but who wouldn't!)

and there was a seal (can you see him?!  he is there, honestly) and he swam with two surprised swimmers for half an hour, circling them and playing (seals are curious).

the path back is teeming with wildlife

and plants

and even the first blackberries.

Sunday, 15 August 2010

notebook cover

notebook cover, originally uploaded by glassmountain.
here is the notebook cover in all it's glory. Still need to take pics of the green dotty lining.

orange girl in green wellies

i may have got a little carried away with this one. i can't quite believe that she has come from a (very) dark smudgy drawing, that i can't find to scan in right now. I don't know where the orange hair came from (it was going to be black). i may have been influenced by my red haired little neice who came to stay last week! Anyway she's a notebook cover and will be listed on monday in my folksy shop.

Gorgeous new books

i have been meaning to write about this lovely new book that I received for my birthday, the new alabama chanin book

i loved her first book and have used the handsewing techniques she describes on many of the things i make.  sadly i still haven't made a skirt from it (time?)  but i am about to begin a camisole top from the new book.
there are quite a few more recipes in this book but there are also lots of things to sew and the ones that grab me the most are the place mats and doilies

i think these are just beautiful and am searching for old grey and white tshirts, but too many tshirts have things printed on them these days!

i also love these mats, the stencil for these is included in the book (precut)  there is another stencil used throughout which is much more complicated and needs enlarging called angie's fall, a flower and leaf stencil.  i have to say i would rather have had the second stencil ready made, i don't like having to enlarge from books and am nervous of my cutting out skills!  but i can see that this might have presented practical problems.

the thing that has excited me the most, though, is this method of applique.  the appliqued piece is cut larger than the shape it's going to be sewn on to and then scrunched, i love the effect and am going to try to give it a go this week (i will blog about the difficulty/ease, success/lack of success!).  all in all this is a beautiful book, as a lover of handsewing over machine, i find her writing inspiring and the gorgeous stitches can be used on non jersey sewing.  this book has left me desperate to make 'put-up tomatoes' so i can make proper southern bloody marys, has anyone got a canner? 

Friday, 13 August 2010

folksy friday a-teamers

A lovely selection from the folksy A-teamers
just click on the image to be taken to the shop

raffique cheerymishmash
woolly lakes moody cow designs
creative knits wallpaper rose
Beautiful hats from Raffique
i remember wanting one of these spiders so badly for my birthday.  i did get him and he was black and utterly loved for years.  this gorgeous yellow one is from cheery mishmash
this beautiful elephant is from woolly lakes there was another gorgeous elephant but i think he's gone!
i love this sweet pretty spotty purse from moody cow designs
I love the colours of this lovely slouchy hat by creativeknits
and finally a bit of beautiful romance in the form of this necklace from WallpaperRose
Such a lot of gorgeousness on folksy at the moment