Thursday, 30 December 2010

Gifts from Flora

My Christmas swap parcel arrived in mid December and was placed under the tree


I knew it was the only mini gift for me this year, Flora, what a lovely box.

Inside the contents were delightful, items for a mini Christmas,
and other things for my projects.

Flora you were so very generous, so many things.

My favorite thing is this tray, not the normal item I would choose,
but the shape and colours are so beautiful
my kitchen room box is calling for it,
I hope every one who took part in this swap enjoyed their gifts,
it was great fun and a big thanks to Caterina for all here hard work.

We are now getting ready for our New Years party here,
not the normal thing we would do, but after last year,
we thought we would herald the new year with friends here.

I wish you all a Happy New Year.

Thursday, 23 December 2010

Friday, 10 December 2010

America's Doll House and a give away!

My daughter Fliss is doing a guest post for me today, she also has a giveaway for the dolls house book she has reviewed, details at the end of her post!


I Started to read this book at three in the morning with a gurgling wide eyed baby on my lap, intending to read just a few pages until Sammy gave in to sleep I began. As the pages turned in my hands and my eyes grew heavy I realised I had been reading for well over an hour lost in the history of Faith Bradford and her miniature collection.



At 69 years old Faith Bradford without a girl in her family to leave her collection to decided to donate it instead to the museum she often visited as a girl. The narrative winds in and out of miniature fantasy, museum politics, and both the museums and Bradfords personal history, bringing together photographs and typed manuscripts of the doll house occupants and their scrapbook of soft furnishings. Peppered with nostalgic musings anddescriptions about Bradford such as 'her favourite colours were lavender and grey...' also ' ... Cutting a grandmotherly figure on the floor of the museum, she wore her hair pulled up under a hat fixed with a pin!'



I enjoyed the notions of Faith as a girl her interests, parades, soda fountains and ice cream parlors and like so many miniaturists the eternal hunt for miniatures, seeing an object as something to be used and cherished within ascene, a thimble could be a waste paper basket, Bradford explained 'Everything looks like something else to me.'


I think Bradford must have been an eccentric soul, never married she described her and her sister as 'not very attractive', during the summer she stayed at the back of her sister and brother-in-laws property in a converted chicken coop! these little details stack up throughout this little book adding charm and insight and for me a little bit of dottiness that I found endearing.



The second half of the book is choc filled with coloured photographs of each room, each tiny detail, from the lamp with its missing globe in the attic to the faithful family dog sat by the fire in the library. Concluding with Faiths typed scrapbook filled with tiny fabric remnants of used textiles.


In summary this book works on many levels, not only does it show readers a history of the museum, and an insight into Faith Bradfords creative dream, but it also showcases through text and photographs (deliciously tactile in the scrapbook section) an inspiring room by room account into a magical vintagedollhouse. Letting the reader decided to delve into the informative text or forgothe descriptive museum history and just sit wondering at the miniature marvels in each glossy image.



This lovely book is available here. or if you leave a comment here before Monday 20th I have a spare copy which would love a new home!

Thursday, 2 December 2010

Christmas ornament swap

Beth from Lainies Little Things, send me the following items for our swap.



The post man took ages to deliver them, but they are well worth the wait.

Beth, thank you for being so kind with your gifts.

Tomorrow I am going to decorate my real house for Christmas, with the snow on the ground it should look very festive. My tree will go up over the weekend.

Monday, 29 November 2010

Bleak House

I have been following loads of your blogs and you are all thinking of how you are going to decorate your houses and projects this christmas, well I am having a bleak time here.

Somerset house is set in 1810-1820, thus before the christmas tree was place in the home, and The Georgians had very little decorations.

My toy shop has no room for a tree and decorations, I have tried in previous years.

My childhood kitchen, my mum would never allow decorations in here.

So I'm stumped, I think decorations here will have to be on just the big scale, unless I come up with a plan for another project, or should I just ignore the period of my house and put a tree in there anyway, I did have a tree the first christmas, but realised it was Victorian not Georgian and I have always checked the timeline of items to ensure everything is right.

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

Day and Night

Last weekend the clocks went back, so it now gets dark here an hour early.
I love this time of year, you get home to a bright warm house.


This includes my office, I love to light my projects,
I often sit in my office whilst on my computer with the main office light off
and just the mini lights on.

Below I have all the lights on but with my remote control lights
I can choose what to have on at any time, click on this link to see how I managed to create this.

This photo below does not show how good the house looks in the dark.

I am going to add bricks to the side of Somerset house today, a job which should have been finished along time ago.

I also want to move my shelves down so my rooms boxes are eye level, at this time they are a bit high, I will have to search for another place to keep my Xyron cutter which I use for my card making.

Tuesday, 2 November 2010

A mini day at last....

Yesterday I was feeling really good, 1st time for a while.

So I spent the afternoon inside Somerset house, I was able to plug in all my lamps, in each room I have placed a socket in each corner, this enable me to change lamps and to add things without having to go to the lighting controls at the back of the house, since I brought this system I have found this very use full. The rooms are all tidy since the house move, I have not changed anything around, just took out a few summer things. I am also pleased since the move I have resisted using this area to dump things and it's staying tidy.
One job I have to finish is putting the card bricks up the side of the house, I did get them out yesterday but did not start them, but I'm not going to pack them away, I have a plumber in tomorrow and will have a go whilst he is working in the sitting and dining rooms attaching our new radiators to our system.

Wednesday, 27 October 2010

Internation Swap

I am taking part in the International swap arranged by Caterina

The rules are very simple, our names are put into a random list,
you post 3 items to the next name on the list
and the person before you sends you three items.

The items are,
1 Christmas
1 Toy
1 Autumn

What a great way to meet new friends.
I am sending my three items to Gonda, from the Netherlands
I should receive a parcel from Flora, from Italy

Blogging is such great fun, I am unable to go out much, yet here I travel the world and see the most wonderful things made by the most talented ladies in our hobby.

I am not able to stand for any time, so I have done nothing to my house, I have been making Christmas ornaments for a swap. My daughter Fliss has had her baby a week early and I have been visiting her, which tires me out, you can see a photo of Samuel here on my other blog, everyone is doing well and hopefully mum and baby will be home later today.

Monday, 18 October 2010

A parcel arrives

On Saturday my parcel from Peggy arrived, I was feeling unwell, due to the side effects of the chemo, so it was very nice timing. I love everything purple so the box was wonderful, another nice storage box. Peggy thank you so much for your kind gift.

The contents are a delight, I have a place for everything, the flowers in the pot have been place in my terrace garden, and nice splash of colour, the bird house I have in front of my beach house, I have loads of birds in this project, so it fits well. The crown, I am not so sure, maybe if I think abit, I might be able to make a scene for it!

As for the chair and the picture, in Somerset house I have the grown up daughter's yellow unfinished bedroom, I have been unsure what details to use, but now I have added these items, the scene is set. The daughter of the house has been to France and has fallen in love with every thing french, her father made his money in shipping, so she is able to bring things back, I will have to study this style, it's not one I have thought about before, but it gives me food for thought, watch this space.

I still am unable to find the dresser for my basement, I think I am going to have to pull all my stuff out from my under stair cupboard, a good reason to give it all a sort, but not this week.

Kev wants to take me away to Exeter later this week for two days, if I am well enough, just to rest, our small hotel has a swimming pools so we could have a lazy couple of days. So fingers crossed I will be up to it.

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Swap time

How wonderful all the Chilean miners are now rescued,
it's so good to hear a good news story.
I spent yesterday watching them coming out one by one.



I think this is the 3rd international swap, initiated by Caterina. This year I have decided to join.

This time the requirement will be to make 1 Christmas item, 1 toy and 1 item that reminds me of autumn.

If you want to join in, you have until October 23rd to leave a comment on Caterina's blog.


I have brought these precut flowers for my terrace garden, I hope they will save me a bit of time, and I love the colours on there, Thursday is my mini day, but I am going to visit my daughter today, so mini's tomorrow, I will post the results good or bad later.

Monday, 11 October 2010

Just a Quicky

Just a quick note to thank Peggy, I have won her giveaway, 1st time for me to win, so I am very excited, can't wait for the tiny package to arrive.

It's such fun to see giveawys, I only enter when the item is something I can use in my projects, it's such a good way of bringing every one together, once my followers have reached 150, I have some nice kits ( well I like them) to have as a giveawy.

Friday, 8 October 2010

Coming together

I have done some work on my house this week. In the past couple of months I have done loads of cross stitch finishing a large project, so now I have more time. I wanted to rebuild the basement extension and terrace garden. Firstly I had to find all the components to make the basement. That was fun, I could not find the back wall, it would be easy to spot because I have put bricks on it, I cleared out under my stairs where I keep all these things, not there. I checked out my drawers in the Attic, not there. So in the end I had to make a new back wall.

I need to brick the back wall to make it look like a cellar, I will also make a rack for all the wine bottles. The two barrels will stay on the right hand side. The other thing is I had a large dresser placed in here and yet again I can't find that, I can't believe I would have thrown it out in our house move, it has to be here somewhere. I love the two little candle holders, I brought them at a show last year, there would be no electric this part of the house.

I also cut doors in the main house, leading from the ballroom out to the garden, when I first planned this house I had the room as a dinning room, but then as we do I changed it. I have not done much with the garden, my plans were always to wait until we moved, the plan now is to complete the gardens. I do have a fountain, I have purchased a very small pump to have a water in the garden, but I think this will not happen.I have a tree to make and I want a garden wall at the back. I will put hedges around the garden, and add flowers, with two large displays in the front planters.

This week I want to go through my house tiding each room, moving across the office has knocked over a few items. The lights all work which is good, and as the darker evenings approach, I can have my lights on more often with nice effects.

Saturday, 2 October 2010

October


October is Breast Care Awareness Month, we should all try and do something if we are able,
I have had 4 of my 6 chemo sessions, I am very aware of this year of the effects of cancer.
This year I will just help our local Macmillan centre,
but next year, I plan to be a fundraiser.

So spare a moment for lives lost, my own mum,
and to anyone under going chemo or other cancer treatments.
It's hard living with cancer, but more and more of us are living after cancer.

Monday, 20 September 2010

Finished

Somerset House is now in it's permanent location, Ok it's just on the other side of my office. But we have refurbed the whole space and created loads of space. Our desks which suited the space in our previous house did not work at all well here. The house now is tucked back inside the office behind my side of our bench. I have storage space below and plenty of room to start working on it. I have checked all the lights and they are still working.

Kev replaced our two desk with a long bench placed on the window wall, we sit in the sunlight over our desk space. My view is only of my car parked on the drive and the road outside, but it's not very busy. We used a beech kitchen worktop, which comes in 3metre length which is just bigger than the space we put it.

Kev has his side with all his bits and bobs.

My side is packed, all my silly cows and two room boxes, I want to bring down my beach hut and put on the second shelf. I have found space to pack away all my stuff, the cupboard under the stairs houses all the wood and building stuff.

We each have loads of room to spread our work, and are very pleased with the results. Kev worked hard last week, but he's done a great job.

My first task is to rebuild the basement, I have all the pieces, so it should only take an afternoon. Then I would like to get my attic done, this I have to plan, the attic which came with the house was closed off, but I want a maids room and a day bedroom for the children, I also want some space to show the attic with things stored there.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

After the Wedding

After all the fun of our daughter Su's wedding two weeks ago, I thought I would make a champagne bottle for a wedding. Pic's of her can be seen on my other site Poppypatchwork. The bottle is always on sale at Christmas filled with Celebration chocolates, I have had this bottle for a couple of years.

I made the floor inside to raise the floor level to above where the base of the bottle joins the top,
the base is just printed card.
The table is a spare I have.

This beautiful head dress was brought at a show ages ago,
I was going to use it in a garden scene, but it looks good here.
There is a matching button hole for the groom.
I printed the cards, flight tickets, passport and the boxes under the table,
the white gloves came from a card embellishment pack,

Can you imagine the scene, Bride and groom has just returned to their room at the hotel and dropped their items on a side table, having a rest before jetting off to their honeymoon and maybe another glass of champagne.
I have almost finished stitching my pink/red cushion cover for my real spare bed, this to is on my other site, I will have stitches 100 squares of "patchwork", each square has 30 x 30 stitches, which means I will have stitched 90,000 crosses by the time I have finished.

So now I want a small project. I have often said I am hopeless at using Filmo, but I have a friend Diane Carpenter who is great, I asked her to create a tiger's head for me to attach to a tiger rug which is my next stitching task. So below is her tiger head, I am pleased with it, I want the rug for my study in Somerset House, I will now match the thread to the head, once inside we will only be able to see the back of the head.

Sunday, 22 August 2010

The winner is

Firstly, I am sorry this is late, Joshy(my grandson) was going to visit me on Friday and I wanted him to do this, but mum is resting and yesterday we were very busy, so here it is my 1st giveaway.

Good Luck


It's up to me to pull the name out

And the winner is...............


Julie at KC's Court, I have left a message asking for your address on your blog.

Thank you to every one taking part

We have Su and Gav's wedding this coming weekend, so my time has been full of that and yet again no mini's, we plan to decorate and change the office in September, which means we will have to move my house, so as soon as that is done I will start on the building work to finish the house, thanks to all my followers, and to every one I follow, blogging is such good fun.

Thursday, 12 August 2010

Mini giveaway

I feel a fraud, this is a mini site and I have not had th energy to do anything for a while.

Above is the plan for our office space, it looks very basic, but I have storage behind the doll's house in a large under stairs cupboard. I only keep doll's house and card crafting in this room. my dressmaking stash in the bed drawers in the spare'bed. We have brought the beech bench for in front of the window wall, and planned its construction using legs taken from a table we do not use, my dest will be cut down for shelves above my side. This will be done in September when Kev is on holiday and John our chippie will be availible to cut the bench.


I have decided to have a small giveaway for no reason that I want to, above is a hat and puppy I have made, the dollies I cut from a plastic fabric, they are handy little items. below are some teatowels, I made by printing on fabric, some small flowers I use for trimming hat's etc, and a small picture frame.
to have a chance of winning these items please just leave a comment on this post, I am happy to send anywhere. I will leave this running for one week and announce the winner on Thursday 19th good luck.

If you love the puppy you can go here and follow instructions on how to make him.

Sunday, 1 August 2010

Catching up

I have done nothing to my curtains I was planning to make, feeling tired most of the week I have been doing my cross stitch. I have also been sorting a few cupboards changing items from the dining room to the spare room, it felt as if I had just stuffed things away without thinking of how much I use these items.


Kev and I were sat in our office, the only place we have not decorated, as you will see from the two photo's we have alot of things in this small room. Kev's desk is large without having alot of work space. We have an 8 foot window in here with loads of light. we spoke of buying new desk's mine is tatty, we have come up with a plan to create a bench along the window wall, which would be 9 foot long( 3mtrs), which would give us both more space, move my dolls house to the other side, which gives it more protection, no-one would have to walk past it. This would give us more space in the middle of the room. I quickly did a room plan ( this was a previous job of mine to plan and design office space) and it all fits in well. Kev went on line and found a perfect bench. Our big cupboard would stay, it's metal and the lower drawers are fill of my magazines for stitching and dolls house. So my head is full of plans.

We are busy with wedding plans through out August, but Kev has holiday in September, so fingers crossed, we will get it done and then my house will be better placed for me to work on it.

One small thing I have done is to move my beach hut, it was sat on top of my house, as I have not yet built the attic's. I have moved it to our bedroom, as you walk into the room we have a high free standing storage unit, and I have created the display there, using a tea light light house, which I often use. I have no lights in the hut, I will tidy the beach area and add a few more items.

I would hope to do some mini's but I have wedding things to do for Su, and a couple of hospital appointments this week, and of course cross stitch.

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