Thursday, 30 December 2010


I hope that you had yourself a merry little Christmas?
We had a really good, fun and relaxing one.

We've had guitars, lego and weeing dogs making a lot of noise in our house.  It's hard that time between Christmas and New Year - in a good way of course. My husband has normally always worked but thankfully not this year. So we have all been procrastinating at home; getting up late, playing with presents, watching dvd's and of course eating and drinking far too much. I am not sure how I am going to be able to get up for the school run again next week.
Ah well, I am planning on making the most of it and drinking and eating a wee bit more - healthy eating can wait until next week!
I am sure I will not be organised enough to blog again tomorrow, so Happy New Year to anyone reading my blog - wishing you a fantastic 2011!

Monday, 20 December 2010

Just in case...

...the lady from the Horsebridge Christmas Market, (who wanted one of my black bird cushions but it had sold) happens to come on here...I  had just enough fabric to make one big cushion (and maybe one little cushion to come) and it is now in my Folksy shop.
Plus this little pram quilt is on there too..

Changing the subject completley - what with all the snow the UK has received over the last week, I had to take a pictute of the strange glow that snow gives off late at night. Looking out of our kitchen window normally, it is  pitch black and you can't see a thing but this picture was taken close to midnight on Saturday night and everything had a bluey/yellow twinge to it.
So very strange.

I know the snow has caused chaos and I have heard a lots of horror stories of people getting stuck out in the snow over the weekend but surely even Scrooge would be feeling a teeny bit of Christmas spirit now...It;s beginning to look a lot like Christmas...

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

A successful Christmas market

Well I made it through the weekend and am happy to report that I had a fantastic time at the Christmas Market at the Horsebridge in Whitstable on Saturday.


It was the best market/fair I have ever done. There was a constant stream of customers throughout the day - no doubt they were all going stir crazy at home after being snowed in for a couple of days! It certainly seemed like the whole of Whitstable came out for the day. I wasn't the only one who had a good day either, all the stallholders I spoke made brilliant sales all day.

I sold more than I ever have sold before, plus I got some orders. The cushions were really popular (luckily as I had loads!). I have to confess that I did have more stock than I have ever had before, so I guess a lot more choice for people means they are more likely to buy. I also got some orders, so the sewing machine is still going to be in constant use until chrismas whilst I make 7 mermaid dolls, baby quilts and bird cushions!

I thought a lot more about my stock this time and had quite a few smaller/cheaper items including lavender hearts, brooches and keyrings, which were all between £2 and £4 and these little things certainly add up if you sell lots of them plus I didn't have anything on the table that was over £25.

I've started to post some of the items left over from the fair on my Folksy shop and the some of the cushions can be found in Taking the Plunge (only in store, not available from their online shop).

I was seated at the fair next to the most fabulous facepainters I have ever seen. They were super speedy and so detailed and brilliant - they had a queue most of the day, including my only little D who wanted to be a witch. The red eyes only add to the image I think!

Friday, 3 December 2010

Let is snow, let it snow, let is snow....

Like much of the UK, Whitstable has had a lovely white blanket of snow for a few days now. It has meant 2 days off school for two excited children. Lots of time for the offical first viewings of the most Christmassy film ever - The Polar Express, playing and making snow angels!

It has turned a bit icy and slippery now, but this was the lovely soft, crunchy under foot stuff when it first fell. Simply lovely. It is impossible to not get into the spirit of Christmas when everything looks like this.

Oh and just another quick reminder about the Christmas Market I am taking part in at The Horsebridge Art & Community Centre in Whitstable tomorrow. It is open between 10am and 4pm and as well as 20 or so stalls bursting with crafty goodness, there will also be carol singing, mulled wine, mince pies and facepainting for the kids.

I took over the kitchen table earlier in an attempt to work out how the hell to display all the stuff that I FINALLY managed to make! Hmm, I threw it all on the table so it looks a right old jumble in the picture.
I will take a bit more time displaying it all tomorrow!
Wish me luck.

Sunday, 28 November 2010

Another sneaky peek...


Thanks for the kind comments re my first attempts at freehand embroidery. I have to confess I haven't put the darning needle on again since that attempt, as I realised I really needed to get my arse in gear and make some bits for my stall at the Christmas Market at the Horsebridge on Saturday 4th December.

I've been a busy bee - I always work much better under pressue! I have managed to finish a girlie pram quilt and a few other bits, but I still have lots of half finished mermaids...

...and want to make some more of these little house keyrings...

...err and I'd better get organised in sewing and stuffing these heart decorations...

I have managed to finish a couple more cushions though...

On a lovely Christmassy note, Whitstable had a few flakes of snow today. Not of the settling kind, but snow none the less, which felt very Christmassy! Shame I was at work, but hey!
Oh and talking of work - the little shop where I help out on a Sunday has just launched a fantastic new website. It really is something special, just like the shop is in the flesh! So do take a look as it means if you are not a Whitstable local or a visitor, you can capture a little bit of Taking the Plunge magic via the website and get some extra special and very unique Christmas gifts to boot as well! (you might spot some of my mermaid dolls in the handmade section).

Monday, 15 November 2010

Drawing with sewing machines!

Don't you just love a new toy! I had wanted a freehand embroidery foot for my sewing machine for ages and once I saw this book by Poppy Treffry, I knew I had to have it to give me a helping hand! I was tempted even more when Hannah from Bubblebay Designs posted about the very same book and her first attempts.I finally got both the book and foot for my birthday and decided to have a go at the weekend.

Excuse the poor pictures - they were taken late at night after playing for hours!
The first attempts weren't great, but I loved the idea of it already. I love drawing and did an illustration HND many years ago, and this little toy seemed to combine sewing and drawing together! 

I loved writing with it - and was my main reason for wanting to do freehand embroidery as I have lots of project ideas that seem to involve having writing on them!

A bit rough and ready, but hey I'm a learner!!

I obviously need to practice a bit more, but overall I was really pleased with what you can do! Now I need to put all of these ideas into practice and make some nice new and exciting things!

Sunday, 14 November 2010

A day trip to Rochester

Before we moved to Whitstable, we used to live in Rochester. It is where we brought our first little house and where we lived with our son when he was a baby for a year or so until we moved on...and for some reason, we hadn't been back! So, as it was my birthday last Saturday (one more scary year closer to a BIG birthday!) we decided a little day trip there was in order.

It has probably one of the loveliest High Streets in the country, with a Cathedral and a Castle thrown into the mix! Plus gorgeous old shops like the wonky one above! It did bring back all sorts of memories of being a first time mum and walking up and down the high street with F in a pram!

I don't think this shop existed when we were there? And typical me, I can't remember the name of it - but it was amazing, with it's fantastic displays, I could have spent hours there. I would love those old trunks.

Amazing brooches and jewellery on a black velvet dress - so beautifully displayed!
I didn't take as many pictures as I should have, but it was a lovely day - freezing cold, but sunny too. And I could browse all I liked as well, without anyone moaning (which they normally do) as it was my birthday.
Then home again to a lovely meal cooked by my hubby and birthday cake courtesy of my lovely best pal - thank you Vic, it was delicious

Wednesday, 3 November 2010

A sneaky peek

With December fast approaching and also the craft fair I mentioned in my last post, I figured I'd better start making some things for my stall!
So here is a little sneaky peek of a few bits I have been making and creating whilst the little ones are at school...

I still have a long way to go making my stall look nice and full, but it's a start at least!

Wednesday, 20 October 2010

Christmas Market at the Horsebridge, Whitstable

Eeek! I've gone and signed myself up for a stall at the Christmas Market that The Horsebridge Arts & Community Centre in Whitstable are organising in December.
If you fancy coming along, it is taking place on Saturday 4th December, between 10am and 4pm.
There will also be live carol singers, face painting and yuletide treats and mulled wine from the cafe!

All I have so far to go on my stall is this pram quilt...

I think I am going to be glued to the sewing machine for the next few weeks!!

Thursday, 14 October 2010

Healthy-ish Banana Muffins

Thanks for the comments on the Autumn skirt. I think it might get it's first outing this weekend for my Nan's 90th birthday party!
I apologies for not keeping to my vow of making my blog more crafty again but I thought I would share with you this brilliant banana choc chip muffin recipie. They are delicious and virtually fat and sugar free too so healthy-ish!!

200g (7 oz) self-raising flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 eggs
5 tablespoons sunflower oil
5 tablespoons full-fat milk
1 teaspoon vanilla essence
2 ripe bananas  (about 325g unpeeled weight)
chocolate chips (as many as you want, I use about a third of a 100g pack)

Preheat your oven to 200c (400f) and line a 12 hole muffin or cake tin with paper cases.
Sift the flour and baking powder together into a mixing bowl. Beat the egss, oil, milk and vanilla essence together in a separate bowl.
Mash the bananas on a plate using a fork, then add to flour with the egg mixture and fork the ingredients together briefly until only just mixed. Stir in the chocolate drops.

Spoon the mixture into the paper cases and bake in the oven for 15 minutes until well risen.
And that is it! They are so quick and easy to make and a great way to use up those horrible brown bananas that you will end up chucking out!
Right enough with the baking, sewing next time, I swear!

Sunday, 10 October 2010

A skirt for Autumn

I finally got round to making D a little skirt out of the leaf fabric I brought at IKEA the other week. I made it whilst she was at school and as the only other skirts like this I'd made her were a couple of years old, I had to wing the sizing a bit. Luckily it fitted her perfectly and she loved it, thank goodness.


They are nice and easy to make too - if only I found all clothing easy to make though!