Sunday, 24 January 2010

the button collector

I used to have a mouse in my studio who used to collect buttons. I often used to see him running away with a brightly coloured buttons. So this became my inspiration for my button collector cards. They are a collage of stitches, buttons and a little mouse print taken from an original stick and ink drawing that I did whilst one day the thief nonchalantly passed me by.
I would like to give you the opportunity to win 5 button collector cards that come in a hand - made box. All you have to do is guess how many buttons are in the button collector jar. The nearest guess wins. Leave your guess in my comment bit on my blog. Closing date 1st February.
Will let you know who has won, on my blog.

Tuesday, 19 January 2010

The rare bird of fashion

Observer Woman Magazine no 48 January 2010

I love trawling through the Sunday papers on Sun, Mon, Tues, Wed. By Wednesday I have nearly got to the end of them. There is something quite wonderful about Sunday papers can't put my finger on it. By Monday you can find bits of the papers all around the house, been read, to be read, re-cycling bin without been read, money, motoring, and football. I came across a treasure of an interview about Iris Apfel the fashion muse of the moment who is inspiring anybody who's anybody. At the age off 88 she describes herself as a "geriatric starlet" She has had a passion and obsession for dressing up all her life and her book has just been published Rare bird of fashion: The Irreverent Iris Apfel By Eric Bowman and Harold Koda. I can't wait to get it.

She, habitually finds clothes so cheap she doesn't bother to try them on. "What the hell", she says to herself, "if they don't fit, I 'll turn them in to pillows"
Observer Woman Magazine.

She is a true inspiration, and I was delighted to see in the above photo that she wears nearly as many bangles and beads as me. I drive everybody mad with incessant clanking of bangles and beads all day long. You can never have enough bangles on! Unless of course like the other day I had to give blood and it's a real ******* to get them off in a hurry. It is also absolutely impossible to do anything quietly or sneakily.

Thursday, 14 January 2010

Dry your eyes mate

Somebody asked me yesterday who I most admired. I couldn't answer because I wasn't really sure what the question meant. The question rattled around in my head all night. It got me thinking, I admire so many different people for so many different reasons the list is infinity and beyond.
It was easy really it's my brother. I cannot even begin to tell you how much.

He has touched and diced with the deepest of despair, I thought he was going to go over the edge and we would loose him forever, he held on with a finger tip.
Where is there to go when every piece of you, your soul and your faith in human nature is broken into a million pieces. Me and him went on an amazing journey. The journey was painful, frightening, at times full of despair, we took days minute by minute in and amongst this time we laughed to stave away the fear, he learnt how to become a single dad and me an Auntie we both new nothing about babies, he painted which i truly believe saved him, we talked and talked for hours on end and we listened to The Streets - A grand don't come for free a lot.

In one single moment your whole life can turn round.
I stand there for a minute starin straight into the ground.
Lookin to the left slightly, then looking back down.
World feels like it's caved in proper sorry frown

Dry your eyes mate - The Streets

In time with love, listening and space he started to clamber back to the brother I knew, he never went away he was always there, but everything had become all consuming. He is a survivor and continues to live with a big heart with so much love for his wife, children and family.
He thinks what he has lived through is nothing, he just wants to forget about it all and get on and live life to the fullest. He does. That's why I admire him and love him so much.

If you care about the mental wellbeing of our society join Time for Change.
1 in 4 of us will at some time in our lives suffer with mental illness.
Let's start talking about it! Please!
It's the only way we will fight stigma and discrimination.

Sunday, 10 January 2010

secret keepers.....

Can you keep a secret?
I am a dreadful frivolous gossip and sharer of stories, always have been always will be, but if somebody shares a secret, it will be kept forever. As we go through our lives we are told many secrets or I think the word changes as you grow older to confidences. But secrets in time come out for all manner of reasons some because they need to be shared, some because it's the only way to sort stuff out and some because they are all consuming and it's their time to be let out. I have now been keeping hold of a secret that was told to me, for a long time. When I was first told it, it was all consuming so I buried the secret in the ground, then it was free and I didn't have to worry about letting it out anymore.
I was sitting listening to charlie my nephew over Christmas and he said he had a secret dinosaur living in the garden, how wonderful that's a bit like my secret Brad Pitt in my DREAMS. We all need a place to store secrets so I made some Secret keepers. not quite big enough to keep Brad Pitt in.
Got any to tell?

Wednesday, 6 January 2010

snow = sewing+ drawing + wine + fire

snow = sewing + drawing + wine + fire
We live in a world that we are all in some way trying to control. I love that mother nature kicks her heels up and shows us she is the boss and most defiantly in control by sending us a shed load of snow. How changeable her mood.
My garden today and the same garden in April 2009 isn't she amazing!

Saturday, 2 January 2010

running about like headless chickens

"If I hadn't started painting, I would have raised chickens.
" Grandma Moses

Been running around drawing chickens today and a randy rooster called Derek. They are such interesting creatures, they kept on the move for a good hour, scratching, pecking, making the most delightful noises and dodging Derek.
I sat, stood and froze whilst drawing with stick and ink. I made this cushion from some drawings and want to create a whole series of them and through the chicken shit and claw marks I will try to decipher some of the little illustrations I made and transfer them into stitch.
Are they hens or chickens? What's the difference? Excuse my ignorance.
These were all real free rangers, a lovely hour running around with chickens with their heads on.
Take a sneaky peek at my shop

Friday, 1 January 2010


"We know that the value and meaning of life consists in living it - and living it well. People who have been a strength and comfort to others and have worked for future generations, deriving fulfilment and satisfaction from so doing, these are the people who bring value and meaning to life."
Yesterday I went to a beautiful funeral, a real celebration of how one person has touched so many people's lives in so many ways. And a little bit of that person will continue to live on in those people's lives forever. The above words were read at the funeral and I really love them.
We live once and once only. Get out there and live it! Stop worrying and enjoy 2010.