The lion roars….

Finally I got around to finishing off the goldwork kit that I started with Becky Hogg on a two day course at Hampton Court. After having completed most of the major components the lion has sat in a hoop waiting for all those little fiddly bits to be worked on. So here is the result….


I am relatively happy with the piece, although the s-ing is a little rough around the edges, but I have learnt a number of new techniques. The piece has been finished off by mounting in a small hoop – but I have never been one for putting my work on the wall, so am not entirely sure what I am going to do with this now!

On the gardening front – I bought several little sculptures from a local artist named Emma Godden (so local – she was literally based almost at the bottom of my garden!) who was exhibiting her work as part of the Surrey Artist Open Studios. The nigella and poppy seed heads are now sitting happily in the main border along the path (a very grand title for a little flowerbed!). The seed pods look lovely and were very reasonably priced too, meaning ‘him indoors’ won’t be too unhappy with me!

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Also thrown in a paeony in flower for good measure.

Stitch happy everyone!

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Quick update on canvas work….

How much work can you get done in a day? Well in my case……not very much. But following another visit to Hampton Court at least some progress has been made on my canvas work and I have decided on the next few stitches to fill in. Of course more stitching means lots more threads to contend with!

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It was quite an exciting day all in all as the Palace was hosting the ‘500’ words competition (short story writing by children) and there were celebrity speakers and singers – not to mention a royal visit!

Back at home and the garden is filling out, many of the spring flowers are over and there is far more ‘green’. I don’t have much in the way of bedding plants – just the occasional cosmos, so am now waiting patiently for my lilies to flower.


Happy stitching everyone…..

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Wee braw bag…

Fancied a quick project to complete and this time decided to join the Wee Braw Bag SAL, hosted by Laura Cunningham on INSTAGRAM . Her e-patterns are easy to follow and this is such a simple bag to make. I used some left over Tula Pink – can’t remember what the lining was from – but it looked inoffensive!


I made a few amendments to her pattern adding pockets to both the back and front of the bag. It took about an hour and a half to complete…


I think I will have to change the cord as it is way too thick – so will go hunting for something thinner tomorrow and maybe a few large beads to go on the ends of the cord.

Meanwhile in the garden…. My thalictrum’s are attracting the bees, the first roses are in flower as are the Cornus, Peonies, Paris and Astrantia. Still have a few marsh orchids too…


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Making a little progress….

Following another day at Hampton Court I finally feel that I have made a little progress with my canvas work.  I still am at a loss as to how to choose a stitch for a particular space – but at least my colour blending is going well (according to Owen). It was a quiet day today with only 3 of us in total – which meant lots of time to talk through our work – something I always feel is most helpful. Sew… is my progress…

The one thing I am uncertain of are the diamonds at the bottom right of the piece – Owen felt they should be slightly unequal to give more flow to the piece, but they just look like I have miscounted stitches to my eyes!

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So my goal is to finish this little area and then move on to some of the background… wish me luck!

Happy stitching everyone!


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Shiny, shiny…..

What a fabulous weekend spent on a two day course at the RSN, with Becky Hogg! Although I have nothing against the Royal family, I felt that I needed to be away from the expected 24 hour media coverage of the ‘Wedding of the Year’. So it was a weekend away to work on my gold work.

The course covered a number of techniques that I already had a little experience with – but also included some new to me such as; cutwork over string padding, pulled and threaded pearl purl and several different couching methods.

Goldwork is however, notoriously slow and after day 1, there was little progress to show for all the hard work, mostly padding and a little passing work…. and we didn’t escape all the Wedding day activities as two very special guests showed up to assess our work           ( Rachel and Owen – in their best bib and tucker)…

During day 2 we applied cutwork over the string padding, coiled and stretched pearl purl which we then interwove with cotton threads – adding colour to the coils. We also couched a leaf to be cut out and added later (sorry no picture of this). So here is the two days of progress…

I had thought about posting a picture of Becky’s finished piece, but I think I will leave everyone guessing a little while longer. Instead here are a few pictures from around Hampton Court, it looked glorious in the sunshine.

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Medley of Monkeys…

Ok, so I know that ‘medley’ is not the collective noun for a group of monkeys, but it rolled off the tongue better than a ‘troop’ or ‘wilderness’! This weekend I have continued to make even more monkeys in readiness for Christmas (never too early to start!) – but have to admit that I lost the will to live after the 5th was finished.

I think I will leave the last two for another time….. Meanwhile in the garden the slipper orchids have come into bloom as well as the Judas tree – which I love.

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Oooh, lovely things…

I don’t know about anyone else, but I just love the right tool for the right job. So having treated myself to a set of new ‘Tulip’ needles, I simply had to have a lovely pincushion to park them in – even though I have several ‘handmade by me’ or ‘gifted’ pincushions already! I had been coveting the work of the Fish Museum and Circus for some time and decided to treat myself. The desire to own an animal pincushion is only intensified by the fact that they sell so quickly. First you need to sign up to a mailing list which then notifies you of the once a month, time of release for each set of pincushion. There are usually about 8-10 pincushions for sale – but these sell out within the first 5 minutes! It took me 4 attempts to buy one that I really liked! But then last week……..

And isn’t he just so cute……


Meanwhile in the garden – spring is in full swing! The slipper orchids, trilliums and cow parsley are all in flower….

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Happy stitching to one and all……………..

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