Monday, 8 August 2016

Farmer Bo

Summertime is always time for me to get my garden into shape and get my crops a good start. Have been growing my own for a wee whiley now, but I wouldn't say I'm super experienced, in fact each year my harvest seems to shrink!! complacency perhaps? This year will be my 6th year of growing your own and I had hoped for a bumper harvest ...

This year I have high hopes for a mega pumpkin patch and kids in the hood can come and pick their own. Have also trying my hand at legumes - thats peas and beans to non-gardening folks as well as my usual successes of courgettes, tomatoes, cucumbers and chillies. But sadly this is not the year for grow your own, normally by this time fruits are appearing and the harvesting begins but hardly anything is growing or what little buds are forming are getting eaten by birds and snails - boo hoo.

So what little was left of the mangetouts has only produced a handful of fruits :( but better than nothing!!

Harvest from the weekend - my first courgette and cucumber!! Bit late in the season though.

Monday, 11 July 2016

Blanket Obsession - Part 3

In a bid for the world's cosiest baby I started my 3rd blanket!! This time I made a few samples before starting, normally I wouldn't do this as I thought it would be a waste of time. BUT since I kept getting annoyed with myself and not liking my colour choices halfway through but had committed already so had to finish so this time I bit the bullet and made a ton of colourway samples.

A couple of contenders came out on top - loving the white/teal/aqua/ combo and the white/grey/pink/mint combo.

This blanket was a small part of the stitch sampler blanket, which I blogged about previously here. But below is a quickie pattern on what I did for this one:

DC = Double Crochet
CH = Chain
ST = Stitch
HDC = Half Double Crochet

Chain 121

Row 1 - skip 1st ch, dc in each ch.
Row 2 - Ch 1, skip 1st ch, *dc in next st, ch 1, miss 1 st* Repeat from * till end of row
Row 3 - Ch2 (counts as 1st HDC), HDC in same st, *2 HDC in ch1 space* Repeat from * to end.
Row 4 - Ch1, DC in between HDC cluster from row below (see pic above) Repeat from * to end

Repeat rows 3 & 4 until you reach length required. For the border I just did DC in white all the way around for about 5/6 rows.

And here is the completed blankie - love this one and I think I'll do a few more with different colour combos.

Thursday, 16 June 2016

Blanket Obssession - Part 2

Once I was home from honeymoon I was itching to do some multi-coloured blankets, knitting with one colour can be a bit boring you know, so even though blanket no.1 hadn't been finished its a nice easy one to do on the move. So that one gets taken all round the town while my next creation is a sit at home and concentrate number.

I've been a little bit taken with some crochet-a-long blankets and stitch samplers blankets on Pinterest. So internet once again gets trawled and I find this pattern on ravelry by Janine Holmes for Let's Get Crafting magazine.

Next - colours!! I love this part, my mind goes into overdrive fantasizing about the finished product (what a nerd!!) So I settled on these pastelly brights (is there such a thing?) with white as a base. In hindsight I think these colours are a bit too bright for me but they still work great together and still look fab. I think I'd like to do another one with same colours but a shade or two paler. I used a combination of Stylecraft and random double knit yarns from my stash.

This one worked out alot lot quicker than the popcorn blanket and colours looked fantastic together. Am quite pleased!!

Not the best pattern, there is a bit of phaff and wordiness regarding the start and finish of each row which resulted in a bit of wonkyness at the ends. Which did demotivate me a little - I ended up just getting the jist of what the row should be and using my own knowledge to straighten the sides up. But the border seems to have straightened it up a bit more.

Friday, 10 June 2016

Blanket Obsession - part 1

Most ladies when expecting might feel a sudden nesting urge to clean and declutter, it appears my nesting seems to consist of crochet and knitted blanket mania!!

I started this one while on honeymoon at the start of the year, I needed a nice easy no brainer knitting pattern. Believe it or not it's hard juggling a pattern with multiple balls of wool at 30,000ft!! I also wanted one that wasn't boring either and had a bit of texture - fussy or what! It took me a while to find the perfect pattern, but I came across this one with a cute popcorn stitch.

I had a ton of this silvery metallic Patons yarn bought for the bargainous price of £10 for 10 balls from hobbycraft many moons ago, now I finally have a big project that might use up all 10 balls. It has a lovely a neutral metallic silver colour - perfect. I am ready to go!!

Here's me knitting on the go in Disneyland - waiting waiting waiting for hubby while he's on some rides. It was a bit pants to have to sit out most all the rides but I didn't really mind so long as there was sun and knitting!

It's maybe taken 4 months but it's finished!!

Friday, 22 April 2016

Hello Again

Hang on while I just dust the cobwebs off this blog - OMG, it has been a super long time. In that year and a bit loads and loads have happened!! We got married for one - yay!! and now we have a baby on the way - yay!!!

So you must be thinking crazy woman you'll be busier than ever but I feel I am ready to start blogging again and I'm hopeful that maternity leave will grant me oodles of time to indulge in nesting activities. Aye right sniggers the other mums, wait till the reality hits and the baby won't stop crying. But I am optimistic, I will do my best to make sure that I still have a life even if I am in a sleep deprived bubble for 6 months.

Classes have once again started for the year and they are going well, we now do them in the crafty cabin, which I don't think has been shared on the blog but if you follow me on instagram @boboliddell you will find loads more updates on our crafty adventures. But plenty and plenty of time to fill you in on what's been happening but for now heres some pics from the past year of what I've been making.

Crafty Makes

Christmas Makes

Wedding Makes

Thursday, 6 February 2014

Time for change ...

Blimey what a busy month december was!! it took me the whole of january to recover!! Not to mention our wee jaunt to the Hong of Kong for our first holiday in 4 years!! our first since we embarked on our I Heart Art adventure. We decided this holiday would also be a good time to really work on our business plan and and map out the future of I Heart Art and the result is some very big changes!

Firstly you may have migrated from various social network links to this blog post to see why we have decided to close down the shop – closing down the shop – OMG!!! yes I know its a big step and a big change. But fret not, in our far eastern soul searching we really sat down and asked ourselves, what's working and what's not and the answer is – classes and parties work. Ceramic cafe not. If its not working should we give it all up?? At first I was like yes – lets just draw a line, I am a little frazzled and tired and fed up of copycats and having to constantly think of new things and competing. In my grand old age of 30 ive lost the drive a little and just want an easy life. but christmas was so busy (I suppose thats why I was so tired as well. I felt like one of those hamsters on a wheel!!) Plus we always get amazing feedback and it seems such a shame to give it all up. I absolutely LOVE meeting all the different people over the years and many have become good friends, what a cheesefest, but its true!!. And I really do recognise that we are offering something different in Aberdeen still to this day. Perhaps we are too different and not mainstream enough??

So our next thought was If the classes and parties work, do I really need a physical location? Our conclusion is no. Nowadays with internet shopping many businesses are really asking themselves that question, the reason being rent and rates are extortionate, especially in our oil rich city of Aberdeen. On top of that, parking is expensive in the city centre as well as navigating the congestion, a lot of people just wont come into town, weekend or weekdays, I suppose these are the modern day challenges facing most towns and cities up and down the country and at the end of it all its the small businesses that suffer. And I have a lot of fans out in the shire.

So after all that we feel that we no longer need a physical outlet, my classes can operate closer to the customers in community centres, church halls, scout huts etc and the parties can operate as a mobile service. I can also work from home where I hope to install the kiln in my gigantic new garage, perhaps build a cute wee summer house to run classes from. Working from home will give me more time to work on other aspects of the business ive been neglecting ie my online etsy shops and blogging (of course haha!!).

So please don't shed a tear for us, we'll still be around offering I Heart Art mobile services and we are moving onto pastures new with the hope that it can be a little bit more relaxed, we still get to be involved in a business we love but also have time for US. That's another major reason we are closing the shop, it really is time to live our lives again. Its been 4 years of constant working day and night, events at the weekends, networking at night, admin in the mornings and it was a bit silly as I left the high-powered stressball job for this as I believe that you work to live rather than live to work. So enough is enough, time for our personal lives! Especially since mitchell and I got engaged in Hong Kong!!! whoo hoo, after 11 years he's finally popped the question and ready to make an honest woman out of me. So its gonna be one hell of a year crafting and planning party of the century! Im hoping to not dissapoint on the craft and creative front so watch out wedding world!!

and i leave you with a lovely piccie of my bling in one of our most favouritest places in the world in all its skyscraper and neon light glory.

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

Candybelle's Christmas Cracker

2 weeks ago the annual Candybelle Vintiques christmas fair, which i help to organise rolled round again... Yet again it was muchos stress and sleepless nights running up to the big day with many a late night crafting the vintage santa's grotto out of vintage materials. Thankfully it looked amazing on the day and i even surpassed my own expectations since i was still pom pom making until the 9th hour!


Vintage santas grotto was covered with hessian and lace for a rustic christmas touch and glammed up with these red metallic foil pinwheels. These were an absolute nightmare to make given that the metallic foil is not very forgiving and shows up every little blemish. I won't be making those in a hurry again. Then garlands of poms poms were draped in an artful manner, topped up with fairy lights and piles of vintage inspired wrapped gifts. I made my own holly leaves from vintage fabrics and sewed pages of old books together. I even typed up a wee letter to santa - i sure hope he gets it!

Not only was i stressing majorly about the grotto i had my own stall to sort and organise. This time i vowed i would be super organised and get everything sorted into bags beforehand as i did worry a little about getting all to the hotel on time! i did create extra work much to mitchells annoyance but it was worth it! I bought a million massive re-usuable bags from nickle and dime and put all bags together, all sewing boxes together etc etc. it did make transporting everything so much easier this time round. So halloween night was spent ironing and labelling  from dawn till dusk in between running down to open the door for trick or treaters!

On the day my extra organisation paid off, my stall was set up after an hour and half with time to spare to get changed and even put on make-up and style my hair!! that almost never happens. After 3 christmas fairs maybe im learning?


My stall was a treasure trove of vintage tins, am sad the 70s bold orange and yellow floral print was gone but gone to a good home nevertheless. Singers and baby sewing machines... I usually am sold out of these but was left with both of them at the end of the day, despite me offering a very good deal on a 20s singer with Tutankhamen pattern. And my usual collection of handbags, as you can see i do have a weakness for a good tan leather bag!

more bags!! ladylike kelly bags and retro sporty styled shoulder bags and manly briefcases! 

As you can probably see, i have loads and loads of bags! one day i hope i can get them all listed in my vintage etsy shop. Perhaps a job for next year!!