space of mine own ~ the yarn bunny studio…

I’m always interested to have a looky and a nosy into the places and spaces in which other artists create, so I thought I’d share a little peek into my own space with you…grandly known as ‘the study’, it is in fact a very teenie tiny space carved out at the foot of the stairs from a loft conversion added to the house just before we moved in, and, although I manage to cram a huge amount in & still have a little room to work, I’m certainly outgrowing it. I tend to mainly use it for sewing and storing, and as my little creative haven of inspiration where all my lovely bits and bobs are out of a small Bear’s reach. In the main, my yarn hooking work, design and blogging is done from my favourite armchair downstairs…
…I use the sewing machine I recently had fixed up which my mother bought some (thirty?) years ago and has been passed on to me…I love the weight of it and the sound of the motor. The Bear had her first little go at using it the other day ~ very sweet!…

My little wooden wall cupboard was rescued from Pa’s local tip, along with a beautiful solid wooden writing desk I have in our hallway. I’ve used fruit crates for my shelving and the desk top was given to me by a friend and then cut to size and covered with oil cloth. It stands on A~frame shelf bases by Ikea which I got for a steal on eBay, but which are still awaiting an overhaul…I think they’ll be waiting some time for now! There are various other finds from antiques fairs, markets, car boots and inherited items that make up my storage and decor and pretty much everything has a special value, memory or importance to me…except maybe the printer!
…it hasn’t taken long having finally given in to my love of vintage and embroidered fabrics for the stash to start to grow…it’s a work thing is what I’m telling Daddy Bear, but I often find them hard to part with!…
…a few of my ‘fleurs’ & ‘rosie posie’ jars on display. Some of these will soon be making their way into my Etsy & folksy (set up almost complete) stores…
As you can see, I have quite the rabbity collection, including a gift from one of my oldest and dearest friends which sits up with my craft books, a knitty one as a thank you from Sally at Lulamae’s in Arundel for my jellyfish workshop in March (she knows me well!), my beautiful (and most favourite) Miss Bunny from A Wooden Tree, my Baby Lapin nightlight, vintage Pez dispensers & my gorgeous Bunny Ethel from DottyDaisies are just a few; there are many more tucked away and peeping out from little hidey corners too, as well as a few framed pieces that are awaiting wall space!…

The wooden clown toy was a favourite from my childhood and one of the few items to have survived various house moves and clearings. It even still has my name inscribed on the side in my early scrawling handwriting! The rather grumpy pastel portrait is of me as a teenager (about sixteen I think, and I was grumpy at being made to sit still to be drawn!), and, as with any pictures of me, I don’t like that aspect of it, but I do love this as a piece of work as it was done by my Ma and has many attachments to it…

So that’s pretty much it for the tour for now…I hope you’ve enjoyed a little snippet of my offline space of mine own…and there may be news on the outgrowing bit of it soon, but it’s schtum for now ;0)…

Thanks for joining me 

I Wanna Hug You!

If we’ve never met before and we meet in person and I go abit funny when we say goodbye…it’s a good thing…

Have you ever met a person, and after only maybe one conversation, felt the overwhelming need to give them a hug?

This actually does happen to me…increasingly so…but not in a long time until recently…twice in three days just very recently which made me want to write about it…My Ma says I’m “emotionally intelligent” (which is a good thing, since I’m not generally very anything of the other kinds of intelligent, except maybe creatively so), so perhaps it has something to do with this ~ picking up on auras or something ~ I’ve always been a bit of an emotional vacuum (in that I suck up other people’s emotions and can pick up on tensions quite quickly, not in that I am emotionally vacuous of course!), which has actually been rather a negative thing as it does tend to be the bad stuff I pick up and I tend to take it onboard and it tends to make me feel bad when it’s nothing to do with me in the first place (here‘s how I deal with this). Maybe wanting to hug someone is the positive side of this phenomenon…

Anyway, the first time it happened to me was when we went to view a house in Gloucestershire…it was really out of our budget, but the second we stepped foot in that house, hubbie & I just felt enveloped in a cosy warmth and we smiled the whole way round…the lady who owned the house gave us the tour and we ended up in the kitchen. I can’t remember now how long we were there or what we talked about, but I remember thinking she had obviously loved her home and her time there and was sad to be leaving… As we were about to say goodbye, I just felt like I wanted to hug her. I’m usually abit shy & I admit, it is odd for a stranger to suddenly offer you a hug, so I wouldn’t usually say anything, but for some reason I did this time…I mumbled something along the lines of ‘I know it’s weird but I feel like I’ve known you before and I just want to give you a big hug!’, and the funniest bit was that she said, ‘How weird, I was thinking exactly the same!!’ and we ended up hugging in the middle of her kitchen…

We bought that house and it was a really special place to me too, for many reasons…

The second time was on our honeymoon…I had a few massages while hubbie was off windsurfing. We’d had a lot going on that was stressing me out, not least of which was organising the wedding…a wonderful & lovely lady gave me quiet advice on dealing with the tension I was tending to build up at the time. She wouldn’t know this, but meeting her, and the simplest of her words started me on a path to truly mending broken bits inside which has helped me enormously in my life and journey to date…I didn’t know her well, or at all really, but the day we left, she came to say goodbye, which she didn’t have to do, we hugged and I felt bizarrely emotional in a sad happy way. I still can’t say I “know” her, but I am privileged to hear of some of the good things (about which I am so glad for her) that go on in her life via facebook, and to continue to be inspired by her posts now and then…

The hugging thing hasn’t happened since then, until three days ago when I went to a vintage fair…I met a lady at her stand and she explained the history behind some of the materials she uses…I was fascinated and I also instantly liked her…I bumped into her at the cake stand later and we chatted a little, and I just thought, ‘ooo you’re such a sweet, lovely lady, I just wanna give you a squeeze!’

And today, a lady who I’ve spoken to a few times via email came to drop off somes pieces I’d ordered from her…We got the bits in from the car and she stayed for a cuppa, and we nattered about this and that..but the biggest thing was a compliment she made about my writing…she didn’t have to say what she did, but it meant a lot and the more so because I knew she didn’t have to say it…and as she was leaving I could almost feel my arms wanting to stretch out for a hug…

Today reminded me of the lady whose house we bought, and our honeymoon, and made me think about what it is about these women that sparks this reaction. I am someone who is generally a little careful about other women with a lingering distrust from school days. And yet I have a few good friends whom I trust & adore, and who inspire me daily, to whom I feel connected, but these women, despite being strangers, just radiated a warmth and loveliness, an X-factorness that immediately put me at ease in myself, they talked with passion and interest about whatever was relevant at the time we met, and also listened to me babble on…They seemed like strong, confident women, and I felt hugged just by talking to them. That is not an everyday occurrence, and it wasn’t just about a compliment given, or a piece of advice, it wasn’t what we spoke about or where we were, nor what they did for a living or the way they behaved; they are all just people that in a fleeting moment made me feel…happy. And it doesn’t matter whether or not they felt the same, it’s so not the important bit, and I don’t know whether we’ll ever meet in person again, (although it would be utterly lovely) ~ what will be will be. Sometimes, we meet people for a reason; either to make a change for us, or for us to make a change for them. The important bit for me is that I hope these women know that just by being who they are…a warmth and goodness shines out and genuinely touches other people…and if they’ve never noticed or believed it…I hope they might read this one day and find out. If I would unwittingly make one person I meet only once feel like that in my life, I would be a very happy bunny…

So if we’ve been strangers and one day we meet…if I go abit funny when we say goodbye…it’s because I’m fighting a hug. Which means you’re probably just a little bit extra lovely!

Thanks for joining me 

Ten on Ten Project

I recently stumbled upon another great photography project via Fat Mum Slim ~ ‘Ten on Ten’. Ten photos {roughly one an hour} taken & posted on the tenth of each month {hence Ten on Ten!}.

El Hogan probably describes the reasons behind it best here ~ I totally get where she’s coming from, and for me, it will be a chance to document our life on one day every month, whatever is going on, from the lovely, bright and beautiful, to the mundane and tiresome {which can occasionally hold the sweetest moments, although most days, I have to look really hard…even squint a little!}; even on those days that involve washing mountains, tidying {again and again if you have a small whirlwind undoing everything just as you do it}, tantrums, feeling stretched & exhausting, and wanting the world to stop for one peaceful minute…because these days, come what may, create the fabric of our life, even the imperfect ones, and because “the days are so long, but the years are so short”…

1. Bear demanded the new top Daddy got her {which meant ironing first thing ~ bleurgh!}
2. She was very excited as to how much she could now see over the neighbour’s gate {“Look Mummy, I’ve grown!!”}
3. A little chill time while I get ready for the day {Loving Monsters Inc.}
4. Woolly friends at the Findon Sheep Fair
5~6. Cake & Colour {Boo was gutted she was too small for this one having been on a (not much) smaller one in France}
7~8. A visit to the cousins & the wabbit
9. Teatime
10. Bathtime

As with most things lately, my posting has been a little delayed due to one thing or another {internet issues & planning, prepping & going on holiday}, but I had a lovely day to take these shots and am so glad I started this project already…I’m thinking I may not always post on the tenth as I have to squeeze in my blogging when I can, but I’ll try to take the shots on the tenth {it’s picking just ten photos I find hardest! I might have to squidge one or two more in here and there!}

Ten on Ten is being completed by a circle of really amazing photographers {I have to admit a personal fondness for El, Rowe & Molly, but they are truly all awesome!}. If you start with any one of the sites: each participant links onto the next in a circle {pretty cool idea, huh?!}. You can check out lots of the participants directly from the list below too ~ I had great fun looking them all up (but finding all of these took quite some time as some from the originals seem to have stopped, and some have joined fairly recently, I’m sure I’ve missed others ~ go explore for yourself once you’ve got the idea). My photography is by no means pro. {not one little bit – uh uh!} but I do love my first set and very much look forward to the coming months…

Rowe Timpson
El Hogan
Molly Flanagan
jackandruby studios
amy lucy
sara tegman
K.Lane Photography
gail pomare
gretchen davis
Rebecca Conway
Mary Collier
Amy Boring
Rachel Devine
abbie mcfarland
kristin m. young

Finally, I’m not sure she’s officially following the project as her shots are ‘a picture an hour’, but it’s a similar idea & I just love the photos & blog of James over at bleubird vintage so of course, I had to share :0)

Are you doing any photo projects? I’m enjoying the #FMSphotoaday challenge too, but I do find some months much harder than others.

Thanks for joining me 

PostScript ~ 17th October 2012 ~ I’ve recently discovered ‘a bit of sunshine’ by Rebekah Gough, who may in fact be considered the original originator of Ten on Ten. I guess there are lots of ideas and projects out there…However you found it; enjoy x

Pink Milk

I’ve been getting ‘Pinspired’ by Pinterest a lot lately and had a hankering for quite some time for some mini milk bottles. Mainly with the idea of a weenie person’s birthday, but they are also just so pretty for flowers…

{click images for links}

So I was very excited to discover them from an eBay seller I like called ‘Homely Touch‘. I’ve bought quite a few bits from her and the service is great as are the products. So a little *squeak* ensued as I got to home to find my parcel containing these had arrived the other day…
I’d also ordered some stripy straws from the lovely ‘thatsmykindaparty‘ (you can also find them on Pinterest with loads more inspiration on offer)…
Well, the Bear was extremely excited and pink milk had to be made immediately of course and was throughly enjoyed…
I can’t wait to experiment with milk and biscuits and flowers and juice and allsorts…

Thanks for joining me 

Pinterest Interest & Link with Love

SoMO on Pinterest

I love Pinterest. I mean I really L.O.V.E. it! I could happily spend hours getting lost from one gorgeous pinned image linked to an amazing blog or site, to find another and another {and another…} {merrily pinning more inspiration along the way} in a seemingly endless maze of creative, inspiring and wonderful people doing and making equally creative, inspiring and wonderful things…

Pinterest is an amazing tool, but I’ve been reading some negative stuff about it lately {about copyrights & idea “stealing” e.g. here & here} and it’s been making me think {abit too much!} and feel somewhat conflicted. So, to clear my head, I thought I’d jot down exactly why it is I like it so much, what my boards mean to me and how I intend to react…

I sometimes have self~esteem issues, I’m not sure there’s many people who don’t at some point. Not as much as I used to, but it’s there in a corner of my mind, always…playing over silly things I’ve said or done, wondering if I’m good enough, doing enough, being enough…trying to be all things to all people and making myself miserable in the process. I’ve been on quite some journey, to try to understand who I am, and to like and accept myself {who hasn’t?!} as much as possible. I have good days, and I have bad days…
One of the reasons I love Pinterest so much is that it’s given me a very real and visual insight into…well, ME. It’s what I like, what inspires me, and what I relate to laid out right there in front of me…

My Style
I’ve always felt uncomfortable with how I dress; never sure what my ‘style’ was and feeling like I needed to fit in with others, and then feeling unhappy because I didn’t feel ‘right’ in what I’d put together. I look at my ‘My Style’ board now and it makes me happy ~ THERE I am & THAT’s my style. In amongst all those pictures, there’s a thread that links them and that’s my style because that’s what I like. For me, not to fit in or for anyone else…we all know how much better we feel when we’re feeling comfortable and confident in how we look, and realising ‘my style’  has certainly been a small part of helping me feel happier and more confident in myself.

One Day Crochet, MMwM Ideas & Crafty Stuff
I’ve always been creative. It runs in the blood on my mother’s side ~ I did Art & Photography A-Levels and a short course in Interior Design {then bottled out of going further (a huge regret)} and then had fleeting interests in bits & pieces, or favours for friends as work and life took over…I did alot of making again when the Bear was expected ~ a labour of love you might say ~ but once she arrived, time was not on my side to be getting creative. Then, as she’s got older and I started to have a little more me time, along came Pinterest & POW! It helped stir my creative juices again ~ seeing the amazing things people make {things I’d never have otherwise seen} and in turn, finding the wonderful bloggers who post about their creative lives and their {sometimes not dissimilar} ups & downs within them.  My craft & crochet boards make me feel so chirrupy chirpy & inspired when I look at them. They help motivate me to keep learning and trying new things and to keep developing my own style of work. As I first started pinning to them, I realised that I so NEED to be creative. I need to make the time and to work on projects that reflect me, who I am and what I love. It’s my outlet. I love being a creative person, it’s always in me and yet it’s historically been the part of who I am I’ve stifled when the going was rough. BiiiiiiG breakthrough moment…

Homey Stuff & Garden Stuff
And finally our house. If you’ve been here before, it’s no secret that I wasn’t in love with our house at first for various reasons. I knew I wanted to somehow put our stamp on it but my previous attempts at decorating never turned out how I visualised them ~ I couldn’t seem to pull a room together despite having lovely pieces I’ve collected over the years. Once again, Pinterest came to my aide and I found that, when I looked at all my images together, I got a much clearer idea of the mood, style and features I liked and how I could incorporate them to work for us. We’re not done yet, but I’m starting to enjoy our house more…it has an essence of us as a family, and it’s a far happier and more comfortable place to be…

I stand in the rather lovely, lively & colourful ‘arty crafty blogging creative peoples’ bubble {phew! it’s a big bubble!}, within which there is an unwritten code of respect and love ~ linking back and forth ~ it’s part of the whole thing we love ~ finding new inspirations, lovely sites and ideas, and sharing them, crediting those from whence they came along the way. In general, while we might want to try out an idea, a cake, a make, a recipe or to learn how to do these things; 99% of us have no intention of “stealing” these ideas or meaningfully causing upset when we have pinned beautiful images, and certainly not of using them directly for our own gain. Most of us are creative enough to want to put our own spin and style into an idea…To an extent, I think we all do what we instinctively feel is right within our own definitions, mainly being to respect the creativity, talent and downright hardwork of others. For newcomers though, I can see how it could be all too easy to see an idea & get carried away with an ‘I could do that’ attitude and to just copy or even emulate another. That’s fine if it’s for personal use, but it gets dirty when people start to think ‘I can do that and make money from it’. I do believe in this case it is important to educate oneself as to what can and can’t be done within the actual legal definitions of copyright, and in either case, to be true to oneself in the spirit of what you do. That way you can be sure that what you create is original to you and has a little bit of your heart in every piece.

I agree there may be some kinks to iron out in terms of Pinterest’s development & growth; I agree that ‘pinners’ should not copy entire details such as recipes or how-to’s in descriptions {I think this is down to awareness rather than a deliberate attempt to take credit}; I agree we should try to maintain original credits and links wherever we can; I definitely think those 1% that do directly “steal” images and copy work and profit from it should be taken down. And hard.

I have pledged to ‘Link with Love’ {check out the link in my side bar to the right if you want to find out more} & provide credit wherever applicable throughout my blog. I pledge to pin what I personally find from original sources wherever possible and, at the very least, to do my best to find the originator of an image I want to repin. I will also pledge to promote that it is better and kinder to ensure you have an original link or credit wherever you can. I feel at this stage, and in the manner in which I use Pinterest, this is enough for me, and I won’t berate myself for the odd repin that doesn’t have the perfect trail.

So wherever possible…

(La Whimsy has also written another very appropriate post with additional points for considerations which I like alot here, and here’s one from my3boybarians)

Thanks for joining me ♥