Wednesday, 29 June 2016

Afternoon at the Castle

Hello..... at the beginning of June a friend and I decided to visit our local castle gardens after I'd been for a doctors appointment, now in modern times storming a castle is much easier than in days of old, in fact if you phone them in advance they will even provide you with a trusty steed.

Yes it was great fun to storm along the draw bridge on one of the castles mobility scooter on our way to the gardens.

In no time at all we were pottling along the paths 

our first stop the Queen Mothers garden

such a tranquil place to sit, plus lookie I just love the colour of the water lilies.

 The grounds at Walmer Castle are broken up into to several areas, so after a trip around the woodland you come to the beautiful wild flower meadow, it's hard to capture how pretty it is with some many wild flowers hidden among the long grasses, loads of insects buzzing about (in a good way!)

I loved the mown pathways, which mean even on the mobility scooter you can get right into the meadow

Lovely stuff .........

Hi here I am taking a very rare, selfie amongst the daisies

We then moved onto the more formal part of the garden

with it's gravel walk ways and a bumpy yew hedge

I love how the castle peaks out from behind the hedges

Then it was onto one of my favourite areas, the kitchen gardens

Just so stunning, I'd love a veg patch just like this if I had the energy, I do miss having a allotment.

Just look at those Aliums

and the wonderful veg patch, 
in fact I had a salad for my lunch while we were there, and they actually went out and picked the salad leaves fresh from the garden, in order to make it, so yum you can't get fresher than that.

Even the greenhouse is so very pretty

A feast for the eyes everywhere you look

and wow the Roses were amazing such wonderful fragrance.

Even the cake was Clare friendly, yummy home made Gluten and dairy free, chocolate brownie. We shared a piece as it would have been rude not to after they had gone to all that trouble...

It was the perfect way to spend a afternoon and enjoy my first day sunshine, since last summer, as I'm taking a small treatment break from my Lyme disease medication which makes me allergic to the sun, sadly since I've been sun allergy free the weathers been pretty awful here but hey ho I guess that's life.

You can read a little more about the castles history in this post here

Clare xx

Saturday, 25 June 2016

Crocheted Coasters

Hello.......... A couple of weeks ago it was my lovely sister birthday and as part of her present I got her this pretty solar lamp for her garden table and well it got me thinking......

 you see, I had the perfect colour matched cotton in my stash, so I decided I just had to make her some pretty coasters to go with the lamp.

So I had a little look about online for the perfect pattern and I found it here over at Bella Coco

I made my coasters on a 3mm hook using some left over Rowan Cotton 
glace, it lovely stuff to work with

and the coasters came together quickly in just a few rounds.

So after the first alfresco crochet of the year it was time to sew the ends in.


Do you like them? 

It was so nice to be out in the garden crocheting again, plus I discovered a perk of the top I was wearing, can you see ?  it has a handy little yarn pocket, just big enough for a ball of cotton.

Happy Days

Clare xx

Tuesday, 21 June 2016

Patchwork May

Hello.......... It's patchwork time again, so here's a little look back at May.

Which was all crochet, ceramics and pants (making !!) 

May is also ME/CFS and Lyme disease awareness month, so I bravely decided to share a post each day about how my illness effects me to help raise awareness over on my Facebook and the blogs instagram page, I did quite well with it but ran out of steam on day 25.

As you know my healths really not been very good this year and I've been in a severe relapse since last October.  I find myself in the difficult position of not having a diagnosis that fully explains all my symptoms and therefore it hard to find a effective treatment, we are just treating symptoms as they occur, fighting fires if you like.  As my GP puts it' my official diagnosis is ME it's probably Lyme disease and my back diagnosis is MS.

It's so hard as I'm developing the symptoms of lots of different autoimmune conditions from Arthritis to Lupus, MS to Diabetes and thyroid disease and Dyautonomia, to name a few, my GP has said she thinks I have some sort of, yet to be discovered multi system autoimmune disease, which lets face it, is just no fun.

If you want to read more about the individual photo's you can find them here on my IG feed.

Onto happier and more lovely things to end with, out in the summerhouse garden.....

Well that's about it for May's round up

Happy Crafting

Clare xx

Friday, 17 June 2016

Rosie Glow

Hello................ Today I'm joining in with Amy's five on a Friday, to share these lovely roses with you.

They are a Floribunda Roses called Masquerade and I sure you can guess why they have that name, so over five days I took a picture of the same rose, awe struck at how amazing nature is.

Day one

Day two (this is my absolute favourite of all the colour changes)

Day three

Day four, so vibrant

Day five, still beautiful but a little worse for wear after a night of storms. 

Have a good weekend 

Clare x

Monday, 13 June 2016

Woodland Flowers Mandala

Hello.........  Over the late May bank holiday weekend I found my crochet mojo again, loosing myself in the wonderful colour that comes with Mandala making

Yes I raided my stash and had a play around with the colours, looking for shades to represent the colours and tones to be found in a woodland, pretty woodland flower colours, the plan was to make a mandala that was big enough to go into a hoop to be mounted on a wall.

Woodland is one of the themes for our next craft club exhibition and when I spotted Marit's Voila Mandala  over on instagram, I just couldn't resist having a go.  I've added a link to the pattern.

So here's my woodland in a yarny themed mandala

First up we have
Spring green
followed by white to represent snowdrops
Closely followed by pretty pink blossom.

I hope you are following along with my thinking on this one, 'P' was not so convinced and kept saying 'I don't get it!!'

Next came the first spattering of Bluebells
more Blossom and
of course the trees bursting into leaf.

Now at this point I took a bit of a leap, away from my usual Summerhouse colour palette, adding in some red yikes, what was I thinking, I did get a bit nervous at the point but I braved it out and I'm glad I did.

So we have red to represent poppies.

Next up came blue skies and clouds, I really am loving this woodland wander.

Following along were
and more Spring green

At this point it was time for a bit of blocking. pinning and wafting with the iron. As you can see I've added a few more rounds here:

More Bluebells, as you can never have to many!!!
Poppies and
then some rain to make the flowers grow, just a little shower.
To keep the tree's nice and green

 I'm not sure what it is about this time of year but I always seem to be drawn to making mandala's it's so restful, working on a round or two each day,  almost like meditation.

So a little catch up
 after the leafy green of summer
comes some Cow parsley
more violets 
and then the blue blue summer skies

Finally to finish we have the berries of Autumn represnted in three different berry toned rounds
and one final round of green

Here's my mandala all blocked measuring about 45 cm, I'm not sure if I'm going to add any more to it yet, I keep thinking wow that would make a lovely cushion, but I'm resisting as there are already far to many cushions here at the Summerhouse.

Now all I need to do is find a hoop that is big enough for the mandala, which is made from various shades of Stylecraft special DK, I do hope you enjoyed this wander through the woods with me.

Happy Crafting

Clare xx

Friday, 10 June 2016

Knicker Bunting

Hello............ Today's blog post is going to be a bit pants.  Yes our craft club was asked by the local library to make some knicker bunting, yes you read that right !!!

As part of a event for a childrens book called 'The Queens Knickers' the fact that the event also coincides with the Queen 90th birthday, I will make no comment about. The bunting going to be hanging in the library very soon, so I'm not too sure how well that's going to go down with some of the towns residents.

Any road, knicker bunting as it turns out is a actual thing, oh yes we were given a pattern from the WI by the library which you can find 'here' should you also need some knicker bunting in you're life.

So I set too thinking about what sort of knickers a queen might need, this was a up cycling project for me using some old fabrics,  first up I used a old cushion cover to make some silk with golden thread knickers, for formal state occasions, very royal indeed in purple and gold.

and then well I couldn't resist making some frilly knickers, the fabrics a old top.

In the end I contributed three of each type, to the knicker bunting collective.

Here's are some of the other knickers made by the group.

Then 'B' who runs the craft club, stitched them on to some tape, we ended up with sixteen pairs in all.

Hopefully they are all fit for a Queen.

I'm loving M's pretty felt flower knickers

Not to mention 'B's' black glitter knickers........

Quite a mix, it did make me laugh when 'B' handed them over to me at a local folk music night, saying 'can you hang them on your tree and take a picture!!!' we sure did get some funny looks.

Don't they look fabulous all hanging in a row.

Knicker bunting soon to be on display in the library, something I thought I never ever have to say.
Happy Crafting

Clare xx