Friday, 31 May 2013

May's Craft Round up

It's craft round up time again at the Summerhouse, the months seem to be flying by this year and hopefully Summer's well on it's way, here's a recap of May's crafts and makes.


The end of April saw the first Summerhouse strawberry of the year, (not sure how, but I missed this off my April makes post, so I've snuck it into May's.) I have plans to make some more of these cute little Strawberries,  I think they will make really good Christmas decorations, yes I know summers on the way. So I promise not to mention the 'C ' word again this post. You can read more about the making of my strawbug 'here'

May saw the making of many felt birdies here at the Summerhouse, above is a tiny birdie brooch I made for a charity fund raiser for,' Ovacome' you can read more 'here'

May also saw me rediscover these little felt birdies at the bottom of my sewing box, so I spent some time this month cutting out there little fabric wings.  Hopefully by June's round up my Birdie bunting will be a bit further along. You can read more about this project 'here'


It wouldn't be a summerhouse craft round up without some yarny crafting, May saw me finally start making some of the decorative leaves for my Purple leaf cushion still a long way to go with the body of the cushion, but I've been having a break from it, as I found the knitting was making my arms and shoulders very painful.

I've also been having a go at making some Attic24 Granny Bunting for Yarndale, if you fancy making some too, Lucy has made another wonderful and easy to follow  tutorial on her Attic 24 blog  just follow the above link.

Paper Crafts

I'm still making my Birdie birthday cards, in fact I made this one this morning and popped it in the post, there seems to be so many birthdays coming up in June, so I really need to find some energy and get some cards made. You can read more about how I make my Birdie cards 'here'

Here are my first two watercolour and ink cards for craft clubs latest book 'Alice in Wonderland' I've got another few weeks yet to complete my Alice playing cards idea.

Here's some I made earlier:

But blogged about in May, my Flower wreath birthday card you can read how I made it 'here'

And finally, my water colour and ink 'Wisteria' painting. It's lovely to see the one in the garden blooming again.

Well that's it for Mays crafts and Makes, May sure seemed to whiz by. Why not leave a comment sharing what crafts you've been up to lately, I love to read all the comments.

Happy Crafting

Clare xx

Thursday, 30 May 2013

Three things :: 05/52

Blogging about three things that have made me happy each week for a year. This weeks been quite a tough one for me health wise, so my three things are all based around Crafting, I guess even when I'm not physically well enough to do very much crafting , I can still plan future crafts and makes, which is dangerous when you already have a very long list of future makes.

Number one.

To much time to with no energy to craft leads to thinking of new projects instead, that lead to some Summerhouse retail therapy, in the form of new craft supplies yippee, some new ribbons and trims and a oh so cute bird house, (for another project for the growing makes list)  I must must must, stop adding makes to the list before finishing the ongoing ones.  Which lead to a good post day when the postie delivered this little lot, equalling one happy Clare.

Number two.

To compensate I've also been thrifty crafting  too, I'd run out of tiny shell buttons for my birdie cards 'more here' until I spied my old painting tunic, which is I'm mean was decorated with lots of shell buttons and beads.

Until last Friday,when I rediscovered it and got into a bit of a snipping frenzy, such joy to be had in a discovering a free supply of buttons. Simple pleasures

after a bit of snipperdy snip snipping, I was left with this lovely bowl of shell buttons and beads, I was careful with my cutting so I still have a intact painting tunic, it's just less it's buttons. I'm now thinking that maybe I could use these lovely button on my birdie bunting too, I love it when a plan come together, free, thrifty, recycled craft supplies Happy Happy Happy.

Number three.

Aww how cute does my new yarn basket look filled with Candy coloured yarn, ready to hook up some Attic 24 Granny Bunting   for Yarndale and some for the Summerhouse too.  This was another birthday gift, so much handier then carrying yarn around in bags. Happy Happy

 So over the weekend I hooked up my first bunting pennant 'here', at times this was some what of a extreme sport as my cat Merlin decided to get involved. He just couldn't resist the crochet yarn and basket combo. Even though he knows the summerhouse rule 'that he's not to play with the yarn.'  I relented in the end and cut him his own piece to play with. Well it was more self preservation.   So we had a happy Merli too, look he's smiling.

That's all the happy for this week, and a very crafty bunch of happy it is too. What's made you smile this week? why not leave a comment.

Happy Crafting 

Clare xx

Monday, 27 May 2013

Sleepy Weekend

It been a very slow and sleepy weekend here at the Summerhouse, I been feeling pretty rotten since Thursday,  who ever invented Lyme disease and it's awful herxheimer reactions has a lot to answer for. So I've spent most of the bank holiday weekend lying around feeling really ghastly.

I had plans for this weekend too, as my shiny new laptop, was being delivered. I've been looking forward to having a new laptop for so long, as my old laptop, the one I usually write my blog on is over 12 years old now, very slow and clunky and like me keeps ceasing up.  So to be having a nightmare herx flare up now is really not a good time.

I'm not very techie minded at the best of times, so when my Uncle turned up on Saturday with my new laptop, I've named him Sammy by the way, my heart sunk a little as I really had no energy in the tank, for dealing with new technology.  Thankfully my uncle did most of the wizzy laptop setting up while I did a lot of lulling about with my head in my hands, bemoaning the scary and unfamiliar world of Windows 8, really would it have hurt them to have left the start button on there. By the end my brain was feeling like porridge. 

 I have since discovered a major flaw with this Samsung window 8 notebook, after accessing a  internet page a few times it seems to loose the ability to display the screen properly, so you can't read or access sites, I'm not happy as I bought this laptop mainly for Internet use when I'm stuck in bed. So anyone with Samsung notebook that knows how to fix this please leave a comment.  

So yesterday and today I've mostly been sofa bound, I couldn't face another day in bed so I've been seeking comfort from hot water bottles and cups of tea in my new flower pot mug, do you like it, I think it's birdietastic, with it's lid on, lid off product feature ! Aww

 I've been following the advise about coping with a Herx, by drinking lots of water, and having Epsom salts baths and resting. I've not be up to very much at all, not much energy for crafting, although I did manage a little bit of crochet over the weekend a little at a time.

It's taken me a few days, but this is the first of my Attic 24 Granny bunting pennants The plan is to make a few to send off to Lucy at the wonderful 'Attic 24'. They are going to made into a huge collective bunting for Yarndale a woolly festival celebrating all things yarny to be held in the Autumn. It's in Yorkshire, which is way to far from the summerhouse for me to visit, but hopefully a little bit of Summerhouse bunting will be there.

Talking of the Summerhouse and bunting, I think I'm going to make some granny bunting for the Summerhouse too. I'm using my left over yarn from the Springtime wreath to make the bunting.  It 's a good project for energy pacing as you have to fasten off after each round. So I've been able to do a round then have a rest/sleep before doing the next, so the perfect make for this weekend.

Don't worry I've not forgot about my Birdie Bunting  there's room for them all in the Summerhouse as it  has three set of rafters and one was always intended for crocheted bunting, yippee.

I did manage to make it out to the garden for some fresh air yesterday afternoon, to admire the lovely Wisteria. We waited for years for it to flower but it wasn't until the cold snowy winters of recent years, that it finally started to bloom, I love the colour of it so.

Here's a water colour and ink I painted last Spring, it's the last full size picture I was well enough to paint. I always think it looks a bit like it should be a fabric print. What do you think ?

I've spent a some of my sofa bound time reading a bit more of 'Falling through the World' by Rachel Clarke, so far I'm finding this book to be a outstanding ficitonal work, about a young girl struck down with ME and all that comes with such a terrible diagnosis at such a young age. A truly accurate representation of what it is to be a teenager with this awful illness with no treatment or cure. A life put on hold, I should know as I first became ill at fourteen like the character in the book.

As I progress through the book I get the sense it's not going to be the easiest read, for me, there maybe tears but it's also a very funny book. Anyone with a friend of family member or who just wants to become more socially aware of the realities of ME should read this book, you can get a copy from Amazon 'here'

Well that's about all for today, I'm off for another rest, here's hoping tomorrows a better day health wise for me and anyone else that is feeling under the weather.

Clare xx

Friday, 24 May 2013

New Birdie Make

Hello.. today I thought I'd tell you about a very ongoing project of mine. This is one of those ones that takes an age especially if you have limited crafting time and are easily distracted like me by other crafts and makes. This little makes has been languishing at the bottom of my sewing basket since the end of last Summer.

Way back last summer, a creative group I'm a member of on Facebook decided on a group project of designing and making a bunting we each made a bunting pennant. We were given the size the pennant needed to be but it was up to us what we made of it, sewing, knitting, crochet, photo based, whatever you wanted. Here at the Summerhouse being a bit bonkers for all things birdie 'here' I decided to make a birdie bunting pennant.

I loved my finished pennant so much that I decided I would make my very own  birdie bunting to hang in the Summerhouse.

So using the same template that I have recently been using to make my birdie cards, I cut out some felt birds.  Then I got distracted when the cold weather set in by knitting hand warmers and then by my Spring time crocheted wreath . Now summer is nearly upon us and my  bunting is still unmade so over the last few weeks I've finished cutting out the felt birdies.

Then I had some fun selecting some lovely fabrics from my stash for the little birdies wings.  As they as so small I opted for fabrics with a smaller pattern on them, so lots of  ditsy flower prints and some polka dots.

 Here they all are, cut out and ready to have there wings sewn on. I'm planning to do this using embroidery thread in complimentary colour and then sew on a button eye. As I say it's going to be a ongoing project with still so much to do with my limited paced crafting time, hopefully I'll have my birdie bunting made by the end of the Summer. I'll keep you posted as to how my new birdie make is going.

Happy crafting

Clare xx

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Three Things :: 04/52

Posting about three things each week for a year that have made me happy. Here's this weeks three things that have made me smiley Happy.

Number one

Well it just had to be the bluebells woods, how could it not have been. Such a wonderful sight, left me with huge smileliness in my heart.

Number two

Is this stunning Moth orchid, isn't it gorgeous, I've been watching the buds forming over the last few weeks. It's the only orchid that has ever re flowered here at the Summerhouse, and not for want of trying with the others. This beauty keeps re flowering every two years, like clockwork. It lives on the table in our lounge and I guess it must be happy there.

Number three

New art supplies, I love a bit of good post, that's what's great about Internet shopping. I ordered these water colour postcards, for the Alice in Wonderland project 'here' and I'm so pleased with how lovely they are. They came in this gorgeous tin, which I was not expecting at all.  It's been great to be using my watercolours again over the last couple of days. I've not done any painting before this for about a year, as my energy levels were not good enough to tackle a huge painting, so these are great as I can do my small postcard size painting from my comfy bed. Happy Happy.

Hows your week been?, what has made you smile, why not leave a comment and share the happy.

Clare xx

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Woodland Wanderings

On Sunday I finally made it out of the house for my, belated birthday blue bell adventure.  In the end after some online research we managed to find a wheelchair accessible Woodland just ten minutes down the road from my sister's house. I think this little section of the Blean Woods is a bit of a hidden treasure. So who wants to come for a Spring time woodland wander? 

We went along the wildart trail, the start of this circular trail is marked by these totem poles

Off we trundled down the lovely wide level paths, I would highly recommend this part of the woods to anyone using a wheelchair or with a buggy, or bikes. Just look how wonderfully green everything is, it make me so happy to be able to get out into nature, something that's not always easy for Wheelchair users.

Around the trail are carvings and sculptures made from natural materials, the last time my sister and her family came to check out the woods to see if it was suitable, my nephew had fun trying to spot them, but couldn't find the Heron, so he was determined to find it this time.

and spot it we did here's a closer look, not quite sure how they missed it the first time round.

accompanying us on our woodland adventure is Mutley, my sister family dog. He was so excited to be out and about in the woods and who can blame him. Me I was on the look out for the Bluebells

and there they were, looking so beautiful amongst the lovely vibrant greens of Springtime.

Seeing all these bluebells made my heart skippy happy, I can't tell you how many photo's I took, when I narrowed it down to do this post I had about 40 photo's that I wanted to use in my blog, so I think I'm going to have to be ruthless with the edit.

not sure how though, as the bluebells are just all sooo lovely. I spent a while just taking it all in.

Storing up the memory, so that when I'm stuck at home in bed feeling ill, I can feast upon the sight of them once again.

I don't think the photo's do justice to how wonderful it all was.

Continuing on along the trial we came across this chap, carved from a old tree stump, lots of the tree stumps in the woods are carved on the top but this one is something else.

Aww one final shot of the Blue bells before we continue are way down the path, and one very happy Clare, mission completed.

My sister did a very good job pushing me all the way round this woodland trail and I appreciated it so much, other than my trip to the Castle a week or so ago I've not been to the woods for many many years, so this was a real treat.

Along the way we passed sculpture and totem poles and huge giant ants and there giant ant hills and then all of a sudden we would come across a view

A wonderful view like this, that makes your heart soar.

There was also plenty of wildlife out and about, the birds song was just beautiful and we came across this little fellow warming himself in the sun. I'm not sure the last time I saw a slow worm in the wild, so this was a lovely discovery on our trundle. Although it looks like some trauma has befallen his tail.

There was such a variety of trees in the wood, and some of it is handily labelled up and framed. Natures own TV!

This is the Radfall an ancient droving way between Canterbury and the coast, it not the best photo but you can just about make out the sculptures of the drover and his pigs.

We continues down the Radfalls  way through the living arch way

There were other living willow structure too, I bet they'll be great for children to play in, when they are in full leaf in the summer time.

Along the droving way the tree stumps are all carved so there is plenty to keep children's interest. Me I was just happy to see all the trees.

All the new greens of Springtime, with wonderful blue skies as a backdrop happy happy.

Trees trees wonderful trees.

There were carved woodpecker to be finding in the trees

some easier to spot

than others.

and the greenery so gorgeous, I'm loving all the zesty greens, that we have here in the UK in the Spring

I love love love them so, I guess it's worth all the rain if you get all this!

Further down the path we came across some of the woods Konik horses

They were very friendly and came over to say hello, I glad to say we didn't come across any of the Highland cattle that also use the woodland for grazing.

Then it was just a short way along the path to the car park

Just before heading back to the car, there was time for one last look back along the path, what a perfect way to spend a hour or so on a Sunday, as for Mutley we'd worn him out he fell asleep in the car on the way home.

Clare xx