Friday, 31 January 2014

January 2014

I am picking my 5 top photos for the month:

1 Nicholas with niece’s baby Tillie at her 1st birthday party

Tillie's 1st birthday 022

2 A look through the gates of the cemetery on a foggy morning

foggy day 008

3 My 2 best craft mates, Tash and Burnice at the Little Bay Brighton restaurant

Burn's birthday 001

4 Lots of weather this month!  Here’s a rainbow out the back of the house.

beach 001

5 The rough sea after one of the many gales this winter.

beach 003 (2)

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Photography challenge–52 Weeks of Photos

I have been thinking about doing another photography challenge for this year.  A few years ago I did photo-a-day, and I have done Scrap Your Day, where you take photos for 1 day each month.  And not forgetting ‘week in my life’, which I will do later in the year.  I have taken several online classes in the past.  So what to do this year?  I didn’t want anything too prescriptive or time consuming, or that involves taking too many pictures! 

Here’s what I have decided to do:

52 weeks of photos

The challenge on 3djean’s blog started last August, but you can start anytime.  There are no rules, except that the first and last photos must be self portraits.  In between there is a list that you can choose from at random.

So here’s my self-portrait taken this morning in my kitchenSmile

 selfies 005

Do you like my new haircut?  I went to the hairdressers yesterday.  I have been searching for a new hairdresser since my previous one started letting me down and changing my appointments all the time. I want a local hairdresser I can walk to that doesn’t cost the earth!  I thought I had found a good one, but he left to start his own salon.  So I am trying another local salon.  The new hairdresser can talk for England!  She talked so much, I wasn’t sure she had done my hair properly, but I think it looks OK this morning. It is nice to have a bit of a change isn’t it?

Monday, 13 January 2014

Crafty goals for 2014

Gosh, I am so late posting this!  It’s nearly half way through January!  I did write my goals a few days ago, just haven’t had/made the time to report them here.


I am ever so slightly obsessed with sewing blogs at the moment, and have really enjoyed reading everyone’s hits, misses for 2103 and goals for 2014, which was hosted by  As a relative newcomer to dressmaking, my takeaways from reading these are:

Make items that I will wear, appropriate design, colour, fabric.  So no fitted sheath dresses or party dresses for me!  I will stick to my usual autumn colour palette so that new items coordinate with existing items in my wardrobe.  And, I’ve realised that I find stretchy fabrics the most comfortable, so I will experiment with knits this year!

I’d like to find some sewing blogs that really inspire me to follow throughout the year, and to try to be involved in the sewing blogging community.

Here’s my first dress of 2014:

dress no 1 001

dress no 1 005dress no 1 010

It’s the Red Velvet dress from Cake patterns, made in Ponte Roma bought at Fabricland.  I had to do a ‘deep bust adjustment’ lengthening the front bodice by 2”.  As a newbie to knits, I found Ponte so easy to sew!  I used a ball point needle and a stretch stitch on my machine.  I had to do a ‘deep bust adjustment’ lengthening the bodice by 2”.  The instructions for construction and fitting adjustments are really clear on the blog.  Other than that the fit is pretty good.   I have worn it already, out with Burnice and Tash to celebrate Burnice’s birthday.  We went to a fabulous restaurant in Brighton.  Check it out here.  We were serenaded by a gorgeous opera singer!

I don’t think I will tackle anything too tricky this year, just try to make lots of different tops, dresses, skirts and maybe some leggings.  I also have a pattern to make pyjamas, for which I have bought some lovely blue polka dot fabric to make some for Lucy.


will not take a back seat! I am going to follow challenges on, and create a Project Life style album for 2014 and scrapbook at least 2 big holidays, USA 2103 and Canada 2004.  I am hoping to go to a scrapbook retreat in the autumn.


I have at least 1 baby quilt to make this year!  There’s a new baby in the family - due any minute!  I have fabric to make 2 or 3 other quilts.  Maybe I will pledge to complete at least 2 this year.

Other crafts

I want to carry on trying new things and will be on the look out for local courses.


So there’s my crafting goals for 2014.  I have goals for other areas of my life, such as lose some weight (seeing those pictures of me above is a bit of a shock as I have put on quite a lot of weight recently) and carry on with my exercise class.  I would like to get a part time job now we don’t have a dog, and am currently updating my CV.  We also have plans for a new kitchen, and some exciting travel plans! 

Come back soon to see how I am getting on!

Sunday, 5 January 2014

Looking back on 2013

I have had a fabulous year!  Here’s some of my successes:

Exercise.  I have kept up with 4x per week exercise all year!  I love going to my exercise classes in the little gym, which is just down the road.  The classes are small, only 6-10 in the group, but we all get on very well and always have a laugh!  Sadly, I have not lost any weight, in fact, put too much on!

home 003

Travel.  Our fabulous holiday to California and Oregon! 

America 2013 016

Home projects.  A small project to update the porch turned into a massive job when we decided to decorate the hall stairs and landing and have a new front door!  We still have the wires to sort out!

home 003

Garden.  Towards the end of the year we did a huge amount of clearing, all these large shrubs are now gone, and the border will be ready to replant.  That is, once the rain has stopped and it is less waterlogged out there!

garden 004

Crafting!  last but not least I have had a fabulous year of crafting, including completing several quilts, trying new things such as the glass fusion workshop, knitting, and rediscovering dressmaking.  I definately made the most of my new sewing machine!  Although scrapbooking took a bit of a back seat, I did complete a major reorganisation of my albums and completed several page challenges.

craft 010craft 001

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA         craft 002craft 001

birthday 001craft 001

So I wonder what is in store for 2014?

Wednesday, 1 January 2014

Happy New Year!

Here’s to a very happy, healthy and prosperous 2014!