Sunday, 29 September 2013

Fobbles Workshop

Fobbles, Holmrook in Cumbria

Patti and me along with Laurelin, Princess of Valor.  This lady was an incredible tutor, nothing was too much to ask.  Everybody got lots of her time, all shared out equally especially as there were beginners and more experienced people attending for the three days.

Patti made sure everybody knew what they were doing and between Patti and Beverley, Fobbles Store Owner, everyone had the equipment and materials they needed.

I hope to be attending a lot more workshops in the future as they cover a variety of subjects like quilting, embroidery, stumpwork, goldwork, applique, The Linus Quilt Project, Cloth Doll Making and loads more.

I look forward to meeting Patti again in 2015 at a Doll Making Class and wish her all the best for next year.

Many thanks Patti and Beverley for a great week, all the good food, endless supplies of coffee and help and a new group of friends that I hope to craft with very soon.

If you are interested in any of the above subjects and would like more information just contact Beverley on 019467 24764 or visit the website

Beverley has an abundance of goodies on offer in her store including fabrics, cotton thread, silk thread, silk ribbons, books, beads and a huge array of tools and accessories and is always ready with a helping hand if you get stuck.


Saturday, 28 September 2013

Peyote Bead

After attending a Patti Medaris Class last week I learned how to do Peyote beading.  It is the first time I have attempted this kind of beading and it turned out really well.  I thought I would share what I have learned and maybe it might make others think about having a go at this kind of beading.

I used Miyuki Seed Beads Size 11 in two different colours, one was a matt teal/green and the other a crystal.  The thread is Nymo thread which is available in all sorts of colours to match what beads you are using.  It is a strong thread that stands up to the large amount of pulling through each bead.

When you start beading it is good idea to have a bead mat, which is like thick velour and also a Scoop-Eze, both of these are available from Fobbles, (Holmrook in Cumbria, they also have a website) and make life very easy as your beads don't roll anyway and when you have finished you can scoop the remainder up quickly to put back into your storage pots.

To begin the Peyote you need a circular strand of beads which is then worked through to give the second layer. 

I am using the Peyote to make joints for my doll, Laurelin, Princess of Valor.

As you can see from the picture I have already completed one leg with the Peyote as the knee joint.  My doll is made from a darker skin fabric covered with a fine net that was decorated with sequins and beads.

I am adding more drop beads and Miyuki Seed Beads to the bodice but it has quite along way to go until it is finished.

The Peyote Bead after four rows which is now ready to go onto a painted compressed cotton ball.

The easiest way to measure what you need is to place a piece of cotton thread around the middle of the ball and cut where one end meets the cotton after wrapping once around and then cut.  You then have a accurate measurement that you know will fit onto the painted cotton ball.

Start going through the centre of the ball and up the outside through the beads until you think the beading is securely wrapped around the ball.  You can do this as many times as you like, until you feel it is comfortable to work with.

As you can see I do it about 8 - 10 times so that there is no movement of the beading.

Start working your way around the ball for another two rows.

After two rows you now need to start decreasing so that you end up with a nice curved shape at the top. 

Pull your thread through to the other side and through a couple of beads.

Bead for another two rows and then start to decrease until you get to the top and secure the end of your thread through some of the beads, making sure it will not loosen off.

Your Peyote Bead is now ready for decorating and to be used for your project.

I hope this gives a little insight into beading, I am certainly no expert but I was really pleased with my first few attempts and I am sure you will find it easy was well.  Thanks for looking. :)

Monday, 23 September 2013

Patti Medaris Culea Doll Classes

I have the great fortune to be on one of Patti Medaris Culea Cloth Doll Class this week which is being held at Fobbles in Holmrook, Cumbria.

We are making Laurelin, princess of the Trees of Valar.

I adore the colours that are being used as I have always been a fan of green, purple and pink.

We have a class list and a pre-workshop job to do before we make a start at the class on Tuesday.

I will try and keep you updated on my progress.  This is hopefully going to be the first of many.

Sunday, 22 September 2013


Since I was a small child we have always had a Monopoly board game.

When I lived at home with my Brother and Mum and Dad, we always played the game every chance we got, always a fair game, never cheating, go around the board once and you can't buy anything at all but you are allowed to claim chance and community chest money.  If someone got a property of an orange colour then nobody else would buy that colour, see, I said fair, my Dad always used to win because he always used to land on the Park Lane and Mayfair properties and bankrupt the rest of us.

After I got married we still had the Monopoly board that we had been given as children and up until a couple of years ago it was really lasting.  However the box fell to bits, then pieces went missing so we gradually ended up with only so many houses per person, so many hotels per person so I figured it was about time we bought a new one.  I had some John Lewis vouchers and decided we should have something a little bit special since we always play it when the kids are back so here it is, A Monopoly Deluxe game box.

The board sits atop a beautifully made wooden box and has all the pieces underneath the wooden gameboard.  Good quality playing pieces, cards and money, all sticking the traditional design 

As you can see it, its already in use, but we DO NOT play my family's fair game, oh no,

the first time I played Monopoly against my husband he was ruthless, really keen and never lost, so over the years we have had some everlasting games that have lasted over days with nobody wanting to give up.

I won this particular game as you can see, my cards, my money and my properties with everybody else hardly having any.  

The Deluxe Monopoly Box has a few surprises, turn the board over and you have Cluedo, with a drawer underneath that has all the original pieces needed for the game.  It also includes a pack of playing cards, chess and draughts, a chess/draughts board the same size as the Monopoly board, Cribbage and Dominoes.  We took this on holiday with us for the evenings, it was well worth the £69.00 paid for it as everything in it and that it is made of is a good quality that won't fall apart too quickly. :)

Saturday, 21 September 2013

The Secret Ministry of Ag. & Fish

I don't generally read books, but after seeing Noreen Riols being interviewed on This Morning last week giving us an insight into her latest book I couldn't resist ordering it.

I received my book on Friday morning and quickly got settled down to read.

I love it, before I knew it I was on chapter 2 in no time at all.  I love the way she writes, very honest, at the moment I am feeling very sorry for old vinegar face, whoever she is!

I am a firm believer that we should not forget about our past history and all those lost and forgotten people that helped us through our battles both at home and overseas and this book certainly gives you an insight into a secret world which until recently most people never knew existed.

All about Churchill's Secret Army - the S.O.E, ( Special Operations Executive ) you can't help but be drawn into a world that you would think only existed in fiction.

If you aren't reading at the moment and want something to renew your interest in books then this is definitely the place to start.

Brilliantly written Noreen, I look forward to reading some of your other books too, thank you. :)

Thursday, 19 September 2013

Scrapbook Stash September 2013

I have had a seriously depleted scrapbook stash over the last year and couldn't decide what needed topped up first, the card, the hardboard albums, the gems or the glues.

Craft Island had a fantastic sale on last week so I took full advantage and got completely stocked up on all my very needed goodies as you can see from the picture :)

Over 200 sheets of Bazzill cardstock including hardboard, dotted swiss and linen in a variety of colours as well as the necessary black, white and cream.
Cricut 12 x 12 cutting mats
Cricut cartridge Sweet Tooth boxes
Prima Border with lace and gems
Fiskars Corner Punch
Webster's Pages Mother & Child Cameo's
Herma Permanent x 8
Cricut Idea Books x 8
A variety of decorative pins including hearts and flowers
Melissa Frances Frames
Simple Stories Baby Steps full collection x 4
Scrap Easy Hardboard and Acrylic Shaped Album

This year I have had an unbelievable amount of mini books, cards etc asked for so this stash will definitely go towards the next lot of albums and cards.

I have two albums on order already for October, along with two quilts and that isn't including items I want to do myself.  

I am on a Cloth Doll Making Course next week being hosted by Fobbles and taught by the one and only Patti Medaris Culea, can't wait, will post pictures.

Friday, 13 September 2013

New kitchen

With any luck by the time this post has been placed on my blog my new kitchen will have been installed.

Waited patiently for years for one to come along that had everything I wanted.  The Belfast Sink with under storage.

Plenty of drawers all the way round and also plenty of cupboard space.

Whoooh, five burner hob with a wok stand in the middle.  Great for using the Fissler pans that we have been buying courtesy of Tesco at a bargain price.

Loving the drawers underneath the hob, all working, not for decoration.

I have chosen a lighter coloured worktop along with light coloured flooring and wall tiles.  I need to get a lot more light into my kitchen as it is quite dark even though there is a big window.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

Karl's Quickie London Tour

I love London and couldn't miss an opportunity to visit my Brother and Sister in Law.  It was great to see them as it had been a while since we had had a get together.

We had a lightening tour of London driven by my BIL and then for a meal afterwards.

Buckingham Palace

Nelson's Column


Big Ben

Houses of Parliament

The Channel Four Sign - it is actually split so you have to be in the right place to get a photo, I didn't do bad considering this was on the move.

Close up of Big Ben

At the end of the tour we had a beautiful meal in Chinatown.  A starter of Dim Sum and then Duck a l'orange with boiled rice.

A good old empty plate - delicious food, great evening, thanks Karl & Sue, we will recommend your tours to everybody, no wonder you watch Coach Trip!!  You could show them a thing or two :) xx

Tuesday, 10 September 2013

Lemon Ganache Victoria Sandwich


8 ozs Self Raising Flour
8 ozs Caster Sugar
8 ozs Margarine
4 eggs
1 Lemon - rind and juice
1 Bar of white chocolate
50ml of double cream
2ozs margarine
4 ozs icing sugar
Yellow food colouring
Lemon curd

Cream the margarine and caster sugar together until very pale and creamy.
Whisk the four eggs together then add a little of the egg mixture with a little flour and mix.
Keep adding until all the flour and eggs are combined.
Add a half of the lemon rind and two teaspoons of lemon juice, mix lightly and pour the mixture into two round baking tins that have been greased and floured.  Bake until golden and firm, test with a skewer, on Gas mark 4 1/2 for about 20-25 minutes

While the two cakes are cooling make the buttercream with the margarine and icing sugar, adding a little yellow food colouring and two teaspoons of lemon juice as well as two teaspoons of lemon curd.

Make the lemon ganache by melting the whole bar of white chocolate, add the cream and mix well.  If you think the mixture is a little stiff add a touch more cream.  Add a teaspoon of lemon juice and a little yellow food colouring.

When the cake has completely cooled, put three tablespoons of lemon curd on the base cake spreading it right to the edge and making sure it is even all across the cake.  Spoon the buttercream on top of the lemon curd, you can put it as thick as you want, as you can see from mine, they like it to the edge.  Put the top layer on then spoon and spread the lemon ganache mixture, it won't run as it sets quite fast, I used the spoon to make the swirls and then decorated with the lemon rind that was left.  This is best served with either a lovely cream tea or a chilled glass of homemade lemonade.  Enjoy. xx

Monday, 9 September 2013

Graphic 45 Little Darlings Album

An accordion pocket album for a Graphic 45 Little Darlings Baby Girl Album

Using pink and green Bazzill cardstock and Stampin Up Neutrals cardstock for the accordion spine.

Each of the pockets holds a card and is punched with a circle punch half way so that there is easy access to the cards to put the photographs on.

A close up of pockets and the way I have used the colours.


A close up of the spine - you can see how easy they can be made up.  The cardstock was scored every half inch on a scoreboard leaving at least 1 1/2 inches at either end to stick the covers onto.

The pockets are made by just gluing the bottom and sides and not the top.

The ends are left so that these can be covered.

I will post another set of pictures when I have completed the next stage.  This was a baby girl album, I have another album to make up but as yet I am waiting to be told the colours as they don't know the sex of the baby but the Graphic 45 cardstock is just gorgeous for doing these albums.