Sunday 31 August 2008

Shopping List Saturday but on a Sunday

This week's choice ~ Hand picked Etsy sellers based around the theme of lino cut prints.

1. blackbirdletterpress ~ Fossil coral card

2. Felicitate88 ~ Original linocut

3. jezze ~ Blockprinted Cotton Tape - Grey Flowers

4. eileengirdwood ~ Zakynthos

5. carenloebelfried ~ Cake ~ original block print

6. joancolbert ~ Ash Tree

I hope you have enjoyed my choice of Etsy Sellers and their beautiful work. Thanks for stopping by. x

Thursday 28 August 2008


Tried something a little different from the norm here.
Very special envelope dated 1946 sent from New York to England. Something very fascinating about a 1940's UK/USA mail. Anyway, the flowers are circles of calico and muslin. The textures and the way the fabrics fray are so lovely. A little bit of Liberty Lawn for colour and then my precious stash of mother of pearl buttons was raided once again. I added a photo of a 1940's wedding couple, covered it with silk, so there is only a shadow of a memory of that day but happiness shines through. Blimey where did that come from? Anyway, it's all about love, memories, happiness and the hopes we have in's a pretty little confection to illustrate this.

Moving swiftly on........ I visited a lovely Gallery in Pembridge, North Herefordshire a few days ago called oldchapelgallery To my total and utter delight found they had Jayne Lennard's work in stock. Jayne Lennard was one of the exhibitors of the Folk Art and Fairy Tales Touring Exhibition, featuring many wonderful artists such as Julie Arkell, Rachael Howard and Jennifer Collier (who lectures at my place of work by the way)! Anyway Jayne Lennards' work is one of my all time favs and I managed to buy this little piece of brilliance at the Gallery.

The photos do not do the intricate, thoughtful beauty of this little box of peg dolls any justice. Her work is so genteel and clever. I do love it and it made my day.
Thanks for stopping by.x

Saturday 23 August 2008

It's a lovely day......hip hip hoorah!!!

I wish there was some way I could thank so many people with a richer, more eloquent use of the english language, but sadly I am lacking in that way.... the last few posts have been extremely emotional and the contents of those letters have stayed with me in my waking thoughts and sleeping dreams. It has been wonderful that there has been so many fine comments with regard to these beautiful but heart breaking letters and I thank you from the bottom of my heart.

Right....change of subject......

Here's a little sweetie image that has been adhered to a small hard bound sketchbook/journal. I have collaged a lovely old postcard, copied it onto linen and then had a french knot frenzy!

I adore these little sweet.

I would like you all to meet Samatha of piccalily and blossom. She has just started her blog and it would be lovely if you could pop in and say 'hello'. It's very scary when you first kick this blogging thing off, is'nt it? Hello Sam ..................................

I would like now to thank jackie of dogdaisy for the blog award.....too kind and very much appreciated. Must pass this on.....need time to think about that one!

Now for Shopping List Saturday, as usual charlotte of fancypicnic has the list of members, if you would like to take a look at their choices, it's very interesting. Here is my choice for today. I have loosely based this week's Etsy sellers around the illustration theme, but as I say loosely!

First is Shelby Healey ~ Bird House.

Shelby did a wonderful thing for me and chose one of my needlecases that featured in Hand Picked on Etsy. I could not believe the flurry of activity and the hundreds of visits to my Etsy shop. I am so grateful to you Shelby. What stunning, wonderful work you have for sale in your shop.

2. lakeillustration ~ Thom Yorke ..... wonderful graphic image of a top bloke. The artist has many more great images of iconic people.

charliemotel ~ Choose illustration of your pet. Just delightful. 4. karingrow ~ MEOW ~ Retro Kitty Original ~ just purrrrrrfect.
5. lalitah ~ Birds Nest Cushion

johnwgolden ~ Pick up your clothes ...... this one is especially for gina .... we have a mutual dislike for teenager's abuse of bath towels!

I hope you have liked the Etsy seller's work....thanks for stopping by. x

Friday 22 August 2008

War time love II

The last two posts seem to have struck a mutual cord.....that Sid's letter is a beautiful, pure love letter wrote under the most awful of circumstances....thanks to lucylocket who did some wonderful research, it seems that The HMS Zulu sank a month later ~ Sid's name not being on the 'deceased' list, thankfully. Lucy also researched that there are two houses in Alma Street, Shrewsbury occupied by Reids. I can only hope that they are in some way decendants of Sid and his wife.

Janel ...left this, below, as a comment. She gave me permission to copy it for you to read.

Miss Wanderlust said...
This is one of my favorite love letters ever. It was actually from the US civil war. SOrry if this is a super long comment but I knew you would love it as do I:

July 14,1861 Camp Clark, Washington DC Dear Sarah:The indications are very strong that we shall move in a few days - perhaps tomorrow. And lest I should not be able to write you again I feel impelled to write a few lines that may fall under your eye when I am no more.I have no misgivings about, or lack of confidence in the cause in which I am engaged, and my courage does not halt or falter. I know how American Civilization now leans upon the triumph of the government and how great a debt we owe to those who went before us through the blood and suffering of the Revolution. And I am willing - perfectly willing - to lay down all my joys in this life, to help maintain this government, and to pay that debt.Sarah, my love for you is deathless, it seems to bind me with mighty cables that nothing but omnipotence can break; and yet my love of Country comes over me like a strong wind and bears me irresistibly with all those chains to the battlefield. The memory of all the blissful moments I have enjoyed with you come crowding over me, and I feel most deeply grateful to God and you, that I have enjoyed them for so long. And how hard it is for me to give them up and burn to ashes the hopes and future years, when, God willing, we might still have lived and loved together, and see our boys grown up to honorable manhood around us.If I do not return, my dear Sarah, never forget how much I loved you, nor that when my last breath escapes me on the battle field, it will whisper your name...Forgive my many faults, and the many pains I have caused you. How thoughtless, how foolish I have sometimes been!...But, 0 Sarah, if the dead can come back to this earth and flit unseen around those they love, I shall always be with you, in the brightest day and in the darkest night... always, always. And when the soft breeze fans your cheek, it shall be my breath, or the cool air your throbbing temple, it shall be my spirit passing by.Sarah do not mourn me dead; think I am gone and wait for me, for we shall meet again...

Sullivan Ballou was killed a week later at the 1st Battle of Bull Run.
22 August 2008 04:16

I shall not comment, as my throat has seized and I can't see for tears. x

Thursday 21 August 2008

Homage to Sid.

This will make more sense if you have read my previous post.

It's funny but it had not occured to me to do anything with this air mail letter ....not until the lovely 'mimilove forever' in the previous comments said that she "would look forward to seeing what I do with it". The light bulb lit and several hours later, here we are.

I have copied the 'goose bump' part of the letter onto linen, collaged and embroidered, you know, my usual thing......I did add some very special antique tatting. I adore this tatting it is so exquiste and I nearly did'nt add it (wanted to keep it) but I thought it really added to the piece. I have also had a french knot fest with this. The very pretty crepe de chine is 1940's.

I don't really know how to finish this post off....It's a very emotional subject, but all I hope for is that long ago an ordinary, every day fella got back to his lovely wife, safe and sound.

Thank you to everyone for stopping by and your wonderful comments. x

Wednesday 20 August 2008

War time love

I would like share one of my treasures with you. I purchased this letter at an antique fair a few years ago for 50p.
It is a war time letter, sent by a Shropshire serviceman to his wife. As you can see from the photos, the date is 13th August, 1942. He is writing from, I think, HMS Zulu.
If you can take the time to read this, I'm sure you will understand how I feel about this letter:

My darling,
You will see there is a small figure one in the top lefthand corner. I've wanted to start this idea of numbering letters for ages, but never brought myself to it. Will you please start numbering yours too my sweet, and then we will be able to tell whether or not any letters go astray. I have an idea that some of yours have and maybe some of mine aswell. We won't be able to bring back that which is lost but will know something of the sequence of our mail. My darling, I've been bursting to write to you for some days, but this is the first opportunity I have had. It's no good trying to write at sea and not always easy in harbour if our stay is shortlived. I'm like you in my letters to you, I like to have time to do it in comfort, because I get such a great deal of pleasure out of it. Forever and ever am I thinking about you and I feel I'm speaking to you when I'm writing. It's only an illusion but it serves a purpose of bringing you nearer to me. (The mail has just come aboard, one letter for our mess and not for me - worse luck). Unfortunately, I have nothing or little more than nothing of news for you. Plenty has been happening but it's not stuff I can tell you about. The 'bursting' to write was in me though despite the fact that I know I could'nt find much to say. I suppose it was really wanting to tell you again how sweet have been my thoughts of you, how heavy my heart without you. That's one thing that I had'nt realised before - every thought of you is a lovely memory and beautiful in that it fills my mind with your sweetness and loveliness. The ony troubled thoughts of you are those I can't deny of whether you are horribly lonely or unhappy, in want or unwell. I'm a terrible old fusspot where you are concerned and often have to pull myself up in the midst of a fit of worrying. Otherwise, my greatest happiness is in thinking and dreaming of you. Sometimes you are at home, sometimes out. Every so often I see a charming picture which affects me more deeply as time goes on - a trim figure, elegantly clad that is my wife, standing on a railway platform, a bit apart from other crowding around, with a small white dog looking wonderingly after a departing train. I see the figure turn away and strain my eyes to see it as long as I can, but the train won't wait, and I know I'm only seeing again and again the picture of the last time I saw you. It's grateful I am that my memory enables me to reconstruct vivid pictures of you, and that they are filled with happiness and love and tenderness. Dearest, we will recapture that lost happiness, renew that tender love. I can't love you more but I can show you how much I love you in hundreds of little ways and when we are finally reunited for good and all I have vowed that my life will be devoted to proving it. I will never be able to do enough for you and I shan't like letting you out of my sight. It is'nt a nice thing to talk about dear heart, but we have to face it, if anything should happen to me, I want you to feel free to marry again. I have'nt liked saying this because I can't bear the thought of never seeing you again. But whatever happens your happiness is sacred to me and I don't want you to think that I would'nt want you to find happiness with somebody else, if I did'nt come back. It's too sordid to dwell on especially when I feel within me that everything will turn out alright but I've wanted to say it for a long time but never had the courage. Oh! There's nothing in my power I would'nt do for you. By the way, don't think I'm feeling morbid or sorry for myself - I hope I have'nt conveyed it but I suppose it has because I've touched on a depressing topic. I like my letters to cheer you up if I can, but every so often I suppose you get one with some thing in it that upsets you. I do so hope there are'nt many, because you must have enough to worry about you without me adding to the worries. Well my precious, it's time to close. I hope I dream of you tonight. God bless you, keep us both safe for each, all my love darling, ever your adoring, Sid xxxxxxx


Tuesday 19 August 2008

Rain, rain go away

Will someone please tell whoever is in charge of weather 'enough already'! So sick of this constant persisting down, cold wind and grey skies skimming our heads....lordy, lordy. There is going to be a mass exodus out of the country soon. Sorry to moan but it really does get you down when you have only had one lovely day in months!

Anyway, onto other things. Yesterday's comments were very interesting, so here is the second in the series of Embellished sketchbooks!
I really would'nt like to count the hours that have gone into this, but this is the age old problem with making items.....unless of course you have hit the big time, one never really recovers time and costs, but hey.....I'm not complaining (although it sure does sound like it). I am really happy making....... and if it sells, that s such a wonderful bonus.

I added a snippet of the letter that came with this Letter Card, I thought it so sweet and from so long ago. The number '95' tag is really special too, it just goes a treat on the top of this and I think it is made of bone. Again the use of old mother of pearl buttons just shimmer a bit of light into it.
Thank you all so much for your endless support and great comments, very much appreciated x

Monday 18 August 2008

Love from Sheila

Two more handmade items for Etsy.
The Needlecase is made from two 1970's greetings cards that my husband had sent to his sister and the other to his Mom. Mom had had a loft clearout recently and I managed to salvage a few bits and pieces from her. Quite scary when you think that they are 30 odd years old! Anyway the two images are very kitch and sweet and make a really cute needlecase.

Then onto this.....gorgeous sketch book/journal, the paper makes me drool! I used a beautiful Letter Card with the most wonderful set of stamps.......collaged and then copied onto linen. (It had the sweetest letter hand written inside by a very small child to her Daddy.... signed 'love from Sheila'.) I did the surface embroidery and button thing, like I do. By the way, I really like using old mother of pearl buttons, they catch the light and lift the piece........then I attached the whole shaboodle to the sketch book. I think this worked out quite well.

Thank you for stopping by. x

Sunday 17 August 2008

Bitter Sweet Symphony

Latest needlecases....a little diversion down the dress making pattern route with a few of these. The lower pics here are the needlecases obviously opened out and I really enjoyed making them. I made them though with half an eye watching Prison Break on my lap top .....Oh.....Wentworth Miller you are divine! Whoops......Did I say that out loud, sorry!

At the risk of boring you all stupid.... 'V' Festival update...... Lucy home this morning (she went Fri. am to 'V') for a couple of hours to shower, eat and change in clean, dry clothing and dump her filthy, muddy tent and clothes.....then back for afternoon and evening...... Alanis Morrisette, Ian Brown and Muse. Amy Winehouse was "rubbish and danced like a chicken", sorry if that offends any Winehouse fans out there, but that's from my daughter who saw her last night. Friday and Saturday days have not rained, something to be grateful for but last night absolutely threw it down.
We did manage to hear from our house (windows open) The Verve's ~ Bitter sweet symphony, just above the sound of driving rain. The music comes and goes on the wind. It was good to hear. Mark and I like a couple of sad so and so's, trying to make out what tune the bands are playing!