Friday, 15 August 2014

Back in the saddle again - ATC swap

Once again I have joined up with Ali at Very Berry Handmade and am taking part in the fourth of her Artist Trading Card swaps.

I love the challenge of making something very tiny - if you want, you can see some of my earlier efforts, but you should definitely check out the cards in the Flickr group where you can see ones from the current swap, both finished and in progress, and have a look at some of the others from previous swaps too.  They are all beautiful and the difference in techniques and choice of subject matters is always really interesting.

The theme of this swap is "getting away from it all" - to be interpreted in any way you like, so I'm having fun trying to think of things that this idea means to me, that would be in any way implementable in a 3.5 x 2.5 inch format!


Very Berry Handmade

I'm back!:-)

Apologies for running late with the Slow Blog linky!

We arrived back from our summer hols on Monday, school started again on Wednesday, and I am only just catching up.  I have one piece of creativity to report.  Terrible picture but you get the idea.  If you are having deja vus this is indeed another robot quilt for one of my nephews who was very envious of the one I made his brother.  As a loving auntie I obviously had to oblige.


The rest of the summer has gone by in a flash.  I spent a special birthday in the highlands with my beloved and had this view from my window


and views like this outdoors:





We climbed Arthur's Seat for a view of Holyrood House and the Firth of Forth,


and spent a week in this - first camping trip with children, and a great success largely due to fantastic weather and to camping next door to my in-laws, including my brother-in-law the professional chef!  


Back to reality with a bump now.  What about you?    If you are a Slow Blogger feel free to link up a post of creativity or other distractions!


Wednesday, 23 July 2014

I am always glad when a crafty person shares their garden on their blog because I really just love a good nosey at other people's patches so I've decided to include more allotment stuff here. You can always just skip it: in fact, a question - do you read blogs, or just look at the pictures?!  I find some blogs irresistible and read all the way through, and there are others which I just look at for the photos - usually bloggers with thousands of readers, so I doubt this admission would bother them.

Anyhow, back to the allotment.  Thing 2 is a diligent helper so she and I went down and picked the remaining soft fruit.  


Nobody but me actually likes blackcurrant jam very much so a few pots will be enough - I will have to find something else to do with them.  If you have a favourite blackcurrant recipe suggestions would be very welcome.

The last strawberries, picked in the sun - I wish you could smell them.



These ones got made into Eton Mess, which was eaten so quickly that there is no photo evidence.  Pictures of other people's dinners are really inspiring but it doesn't often occur to me to take a photo of ours!

We have still got rhubarb and apples to come, because I get the benefit of one side of a row of old apple trees - cookers and eaters - which separates my plot from the next.  I've just been reading Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall's book Booze and found out that you can make rhubarb vodka, so that's next on the list - I will let you know how it goes.

I don't want to sound too like Barbara out of The Good Life (I always liked Margot best) so I'd better point out that my most successful crop at the moment is actually weeds.




Sunday, 20 July 2014

Why I am a Slow Blogger

Thank you to Moira for hosting the Slow Blog Linky - I'm just linking up to make my excuses for the lack of creativity.  I managed to finish one project since the last linky but I am spending the summer holidays trying to be a Good Mother, attempting to keep on top of the weeds on the allotment, and working, so not much craftiness involved.

For the last week I did get to go skiving off to the mountains up North with my husband, without children!


Last year we actually managed to get up to the top of that mountain - this time we were looking at it from the top of something a little smaller.   The vegetation on top of our hill looked like this, heather and blaeberries.



It seems to be a particularly good year for them.  Nom nom nom.


We found this Emperor Moth caterpillar which made me think of the caterpillar in Alice in Wonderland, only missing a hookah to make him look even more psychedelic.


Further down, it was more meadow, with some beautiful orchids. I think this is the Fragrant Orchid (Gymnadenia conopsea) although it definitely was not growing on lime as described in my book.


Sneezewort (achillea ptarmica).



There were more beasties too - a shield bug, 


and a dung beetle.


Needless to say, it wasn't always sunny.



Knotted Cotton

Monday, 14 July 2014

Slow Blog Linky

Hey Slow Bloggers,  are you up to your eyes in small children during the holidays, busy at work, failing to keep up with finish-alongs?

You can always link up with other slow bloggers - this month's party is being hosted tomorrow by the lovely Moira!




Friday, 27 June 2014

Stitch Gathering

How cool is this - it's a bag which is a ticket!  The idea is to embellish it for your secret partner at the retreat.  


Apparently there are only a handful of tickets left and I can highly recommend it.  Last year was such a great day and I learned to make this


and this


so I am really looking forward to this year's event.  If you get your ticket now you will just be in time to choose your own classes.

Tuesday, 24 June 2014

Siblings Together Quilts and Labels

If you grew up with siblings, as I did, the thought of being separated from them is awful. The charity Siblings Together makes it possible for siblings who have been separated from each other by the care system to share some quality time together in the summer camps it organises along with other activities throughout the year.

I originally read about it in Lynne's post here - she was inspired to ask for donations of quilts for children taking part in the summer camps so that they would have something to call their own and to bring them happy memories. You can admire the quilts that have been made in the flickr group, and on Siblings Together twitter feed.

Lynne's post was the incentive I needed to make my first full size quilt.  This year I'm helping out by sending out labels for the quilts.  As before, these have been generously printed for us free of charge by Spoonflower - our contact Becca has written a lovely post about it on the Spoonflower blog and is already planning to make a quilt with her friend for next year's camps.


If you have made, are making, or can be persuaded :-) to make a quilt for this great cause and would like a label please let me know in the comments or by email to catherine [at] knottedcotton [dot] com.  Postage will cost 62p in the UK - if you are overseas I can let you know accordingly.  And if you plan to deliver it at FQR, you will also be able to collect a label from Lynne there - just let us know so that we can be sure to have them available.






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