Saturday, 28 March 2015

Catching Up..Stitching,Sewing & Hobbycraft and Cake International shows,red squirrels and getting cut off by the tide at Llanddwyn Island!!


 28th March 2015. A catch-up is due I think..just have been too busy to write this blog recently and have got out of the habit. A shame really, as once I get into the zone I enjoy it very much...so...will try to do better. Anyway, going back a few weeks, I went to Manchester for the latest Stitching, Sewing & Hobbycraft show. They used to call it the Creative Stitches show but it is basically the same ICHF event I love to visit twice a year. (This time I also took advantage of the added free entry to the Cake International show in an adjoining room..more of that later).There were the usual numerous stands demonstrating crafts and sell lots of "useful stuff"..honestly I could have spent another full day there absorbing it all. This time they featured some costumes from the television programme "Mr Selfridge". I love the clothes from that era and a couple of them were quite Poiret-inspired. Mr Selfridge's suit looked surprisingly modern though..the sort of morning suit you might see at a wedding today. 











One of my favourite stands was there again. Jonathan Korejko was demonstrating paper-making from all sorts of materials..he was great with the kids too 



You could contribute to this knitted chain project ..a chance to sit down for 20minutes.. 




There were a few quilt / textile exhibitions on show too. The theme of this group of pieces was "Glimpses Of India" (hand embroidery)...









...and the theme for these quilts was, I think, "Freedom"..


















As I mentioned, the ticket gave me free entry into the cake show next door...I have never seen so many wonderfully creative cake ideas...don't think I'd want to eat anything that had been so messed about with and was so full of food-colouring but as an art form or for a special event cake there were some fabulous ideas...I'm only showing a few of the hundreds on show...



















By complete contrast I had a stress-busting day at Newborough beach here on Anglesey a few weeks ago with my two daughters. We walked onto Llanddwyn Island and found that it wasn't just a rumour...you could actually get cut off by the high tide! Nothing to worry about though. The water only got to knee high and we just waited for half an hour until it subsided then rolled up our jeans and waded across...








The hardest part was when it was time to leave..the sun was going down and it was hard to tear ourselves away from the view. How lucky am I to live close to such a wonderful place...


Last week I was lucky to catch some photos of the eclipse. I remember well the last one 15 years ago when the kids and I did some magic with mirror and paper (as shown on Blue Peter) and caught a reflection of the eclipse. I couldn't remember how to do it this time but luckily for me the clouds were just right for filtering the glare as the the moon passed in front of the sun. It went spookily dim ..not quite like dusk..and the birds went quiet for a few minutes. I only have a small pocket camera but these photos aren't too bad.I didn't see the diamond ring effect though. I think the best bit for me was probably seeing the lovely Brian Cox on the BBC programme of the event ;-)





Another recent thing I've been doing with my daughter is visiting the red squirrel site near Newborough at Malltraeth. There is a feeding box which is very popular with the squirrels..I guess they are getting used to people coming to feed and watch them. I saw in the local paper that the grey squirrel has been totally eradicated from Anglesey which is allowing the reds to do well..I suppose it helps that Anglesey is an island.







At work (I run art classes 3 times a week for adults with learning disabilities)we've been busy with spring projects..I love the spring pastel colours though it's not all been like that. A couple of weeks ago we did a Chinese New Year project that was rich with red, black and gold.




At last the BBC production of Wolf Hall by Hilary Mantel was shown..it has been a long time coming. Wolf Hall is one of my favourite books so I was waiting nervously in hope that they did a good job...I needn't have worried - Mark Rylance was superb in the role of Thomas Cromwell..his still measured stillness and thoughtful acting was mesmerising. The camera work and direction were fab too...such attention to detail..they even recreated the famous painting of Cromwell by Hans Holbein the Younger in one of the scenes... 




I don't know about your house but my windowledges and my big dining table
are currently covered in pots of seedlings. I am eating my meals on my knees on the sofa at the moment! It's just still a little bit cold to put the seedlings into the greenhouse and I know that if I put pots of broad beans and runner beans out there then the next day I will find seed husks on the surface of the compost after a midnight feast by local field mice! They seem to have the keenest noses for sniffing out seeds! Won't be long until the garden is full of lovely sweet peas again. In the meantime I have had some beautiful snowdrops and daffodils to see me through the last dredges of gloomy winter...




Well I seem to have crammed a lot into my catch-up and hope it didn't drag on too long but before I go just have a look at these tiny spoons I found as a local car boot sale. Aren't they sweet?! I asked around and most seem to think they are little salt or mustard spoons. No idea what to do with them so I shall just admire them on my mantelpiece.  




Last but not least, I've been making crochet brooches...for myself I prefer the cool blue colourway but several people have said they like the spring pastel shades...what do you think??    Ciao for now, have a good weekend wherever you are. xx