I have been taking part in the Pincushion Swap, set up by Claire Payne.

The deadline was 14th April, but my partner insisted that we wait until I got back from Kelso, so I sent it off yesterday and recieved mine yesterday too. What was amazing timing abotu that was that yesterday was also my birthday. So I have held off opening it until Lisa-Marie gets mine. Then we are going to meet up at Loch Leven Larder for a de-brief! Delish!

I’ll post up what I sent here and how I made it once we have completed the swop, but a wee piccie above as a hint.

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Kelso. Me, not you.

I went with a load of family – 11 to be precise. We booked an amazing house on a farm, and it was great – nice walks, visits to a beach, barbeques and at the end of every day – hot-tub, often with a rum and coke.

Treehouse

And no, we weren’t stranded, flights we still operating the 87 miles from Kelso to Kinross …

I made one. One apron. Now I can’t stop. There is something so immediate and satisfying about sewing, cutting the material piecing it together and pressing the pedal et voila!!! Thats were knitting loses out. It takes ages and at the end you realise you’ve ballsed up.Pft.

After having a shot at an apron for Mais ehse had two wee pals birthdays come up. I used the Montessori pattern this time, but added a wee pocket at the front and had a go at putting an initial letter on the pocket.

So what do you think?

Apologies for making you turn your head – wordpress won’t let me rotate these pics.

Maisie helped model! I was very pleased with these and will be making them again. My Mark was chucking out some shirts so I cut all the back panels off the more colourful ones, and used them along with some cotton offcuts I got from Dunelm Mill in Kirkcaldy. The neck straps have elastic through them, and the waist straps have velcro, so the kids can easily put them on and off themselves.

This one uses a more of a tartan fabric as it is for a Dutch friend, thought they might like the Scottish connection. The other apron I don’t think I have a pic of, but it had an A for Albert, and it was more like an applique attempt.

Next up – some simple drawstring bags I think for all my odds and ends. And hooks – lots of hooks, from Ikea.

So when ‘we’ do baking, that is me and my diligent spoon licker, Masie, she always wears my other apron which is, no surprise here, a little too big for her 3 year old frame. So I thought I would TRY and make one for her. I haven’t made anything really and as I will be needing to get on with my pincushion I wanted to break myself in gently. I found a really easy downloadable tutorial, although it called for D rings and the like, I just used ribbons to make it even easier. (Although just found this one which I will try next time)I had a load of poly gingham from her birthday party when made bunting and tablecloths, so I used that and a table cloth as a pocket detail ( it sounds so grand – you’ll actually choke when you see these pics…)

And here it is:

I didn’t even change the bobbin and thread to white to do the pocket, I kept it red, that how slap dash I was, but I did cut the pattern, first time ever!!!

Loved it. More importantly, Maisie declared it “Perfect”.

Chuffed.

I said YES YES YES…

Nope – still not a crack addict.

I buckled to the peer pressure tho’ and visited Fabric Rehab.

I picked up these wee wonders, although I spent quite a bit and still feel like I don’t have very much.

So I went in search of a nearby fabric shop to buy some decent swathes of plain material that I could dot with the rehab material. Google pointed me to Dunfermline, a mere 12.9 miles away. Two shops were highlighted: Dunfermline Craft Store and The Mad Crafters. The latter no longer existed and the former told me they haven’t sold fabric for 7 years, and the closest fabric shop is Rejects, in Kirkcaldy, which I have heard great things about so will have a pilgrimage there this weekend. I just want some plain white and coloured fabric to get me started.

Its not much to ask, is it?

Maybe you have already heard of it. My friend Laurie introduced me to it, she introduces me to lots of great things. She is fab. I am intensely pleased to find that she is my friend. Anyway…. I gushingly digress….

Postcrossing is a free website and service. You sign up and are immediately given up to 5 addresses to send a postcard to. They can be anywhere in the world. Once you send your card off and it is received, you will start to get postcards back, not from who you sent them to, but from other completely different people. Its quite amazing. I have always loved getting letters from people, and I have a couple of friends who are excellent letter writers (again, overcome with a warm and grateful feeling of how lucky I am in life in terms of the friends I have, and who I dearly love)*. This way you can almost be guaranteed of a postcard everyday, depending how intensely you postcross.

There are a lot of Finnish involved, not to sure why, maybe it was started by a Finn. (it sounds like thats a ‘con’ but its not – just an observation!) And you do find yourself at the post office more often that usual, but thats no bad thing, gets you out of the house!

To send a EU postcard costs about 54p and an outer EU card is 64p ish.

Also as I always have loved picking up postcards wherever I go, holiday museum, degree show, whatever, it is a great way to use they for what nature intended.

So if you fancy giving it a go, enjoy!

*I seem to have the opposite of PMT today… whats going on???? It is sunny I suppose.

my mum and Meryl Streep!

It was an amazing weekend. Here is a link to a youtube video of mum on stage with Meryl.

And the intro that Hilary Clinton gave:

You’ll have to go here to find it but it amazing, 6 etsy shops offering mystery gifts and a great way to see whats out there in the endless etsy world!

I got this book for Christmas from a lovely friend.

I had bookmarked a couple of recipes to try out. Starting simple with some vanilla cupcakes for one of Maisie Moo’s friends birthday. Iced pink of course, but the recipe did make something all together lighter than the average cupcake mix. I do also love the look of the lemon drizzle cake recipe and have bought the elusive ring mould in preparation. But this weekend Maisie and I also made the most divine carrot cake from the recipe. Just so light and moist, which must be due to the inclusion of bicarb of soda and sunflower oil, no butter, in the recipe.

The recipe does call for making it a 3 layer cake which would be spectacular, but i couldn’t be arsed, so I made a one layer cake, a loaf shaped cake and a set of cupcakes, all with cream cheese frosting. Delish. Its the walnuts that make it…

Next from this book will be the Red Velvet cupcakes for a Twilgiht/New Moon party this weekend. I had some Red Velvet cake in New York and it blew my fragile little mind!

Well its the Pincushion swop of course! I mean how could I NOT? Ok, so I have only ever made one pincushion, and people eyed it suspiciously, poked it and said “What IS it?” But I remain undeterred, completely positive and more than a little deluded.

My partner is Lisa-Marie, she lives up the road in Dundee, and works even closer by. So we are determined to meet up in a totally non-stalker like capacity before the swop.

My ex-swop partner Rachel is also involved, and I see she has also got a great partner in swop – a well matched pair indeed!

So 14th April is the dead line, and I predict and anxious late night drive to Dundee April 13th… :/