Wednesday, April 26

{ my april }


Another month so very nearly over.  This one has fled by in a flurry of Spring blossoms, bunnies & Bank Holidays.  I still have a few things left on my month's to do list, but there is a satisfying number already ticked off.

{ knitting }
The month of March had been all about the planning.  And April was all about the knitting.  It has been both exciting, and scary, ordering lots of yarn and knitting needles, and my first foray into jumbo knitting has been a fun one.  In a way it's taken me back to those childhood days of learning to knit, when the yarn & needles felt a little clumsy and unfamiliar.  And then you settle into that routine;  needle through the stitch, yarn around the needle, make new stitch.  The pile of swatches of different stitches, and different yarns, has grown, and things are slowly starting to take shape.  It still feels too early to reveal much more, though I think this may be the last month I allow myself to say that, but I think there may be a couple of posts coming next month to give you a bit more of a peek into the plan. 


{ reading }
My reading list this month has been a tad impressive, mainly due to being laid low by a virus at the beginning of the month, and reading being the only thing I had the energy, or the inclination for.  Somewhat ironically, I began the month reading Julian Barnes The Sense of an Ending a book that has been on my bookshelf for a while, but never read.  A book about memory and history, about re-examining events of the past from a different perspective; "I need to return briefly to a few incidents that have grown into anecdotes, to some approximate memories which time  has deformed into certainty."  

Something a little less serious next, and my next Agatha Christie, The Man in the Brown Suit a book of murder, mystery, intrigue, in the usual Ms Christie style.  Eager to find out Who'd Done It, I was quickly onto the book I've just finished, Anna Hope's The Ballroom.  I've just had a quick read through some of the reviews for this book on Goodreads, and by no coincidence do the same words appear;  beautiful, anguished, simple, slow, heartbreaking.  Set in an asylum on the edge of the Yorkshire Moors, the story is told from three person's viewpoints, inmates Ella and John, and one of the doctors, Charles.  To call it a love story would be to simplify the narrative, as it's so much more than that.  This isn't the book to pick up if you are looking for something to lift your spirits, you are more in danger of being left feeling slightly bereft, but a wonderful read none the less.


{ making }
Easter provided a lovely excuse to make a few little treat boxes to send out to friends.  Unlike previous years, I didn't do a lot of Easter baking this year, but did try my hand at making mini Easter eggs.  A little trickier than I thought they'd be, I have a new found respect for all the chocolatiers of the country.  Slightly easier to put together were these little gift boxes, each complete with their own Easter bunny, guarding those chocolate eggs.


{ watching }
Spring may have officially arrived in March, but I always feel it's April that it really begins to arrive.  Despite the British weather's best efforts to thwart the spring blooms, it seems there's been enough sunshine to bring out all the beautiful blossom, and to start making good in the garden.  Two trips already to the local nursery, with a few more to come I'm sure, though with the temperature having plummeted once again, this box of blooms is safely tucked inside the greenhouse for now.

At the moment the calendar looks very quiet for May, leaving plenty of time for more knitting, more reading, and more gardening I think #slowliving.

{ have a happy day }

Monday, April 24

{ local ♥︎ . meeting makers at the Spring Market }

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

The sunshine on Saturday reminded me of the sun that shone on the April day two years back, when I first visited the Spring Market at the Bond.  Several visits to Market later, it's become a much looked forward to event on my calendar, and even more so when the forecast is for a dry, bright, sunny day.

There were lots of familiar faces;  the very cute Cocktail Caravan, facing off against the Bus Bar, amazingly tempting aroma's from the many food vendors, and indoors an array of delights from local makers and bakers.  I think one of the things I like most about these Markets is realising how much creativity there is happening on the doorstep.  On-Line marketplaces like Etsy, and makers own websites have made it easier to be an independent maker, but there is something so lovely about being able to see, and pick up, and chat to these people in person.

I think I had my favourite five picked out before I was even home.  Those makers whose products linger in the mind, and leave you wishing, "I really wish I'd bought that"!  I have seen Currentstate Studio's before, and love their print work.  On Saturday they debuted a new range, Love Letters, which I fell a little in love with.  Typographical illustrations with a wonderful charm, they were showing the first letters they'd worked on at the Market.  A new discovery was the super cute Bug.  Bug is Ellie, a jewellery designer, who makes the most darling of necklaces, rings and things.  Collections entitled La La Land, Summer Farm, and la Discoteque, adorned with mini boiled egg and spoons, pigs in tea cups, and even mini record players.  Do take a look at her website, which is just as super cute as her jewellery, with product styling to make you smile.

Rolling Roses was one of the makers I featured on my post on my first visit, and I always love having a peek at her stall to see what lovely new things she's been working on.  Her ceramics are beautiful, her signature style the lace imprint, with the delicate glaze of colour inside the piece.  Some of her newer pieces now have a delicate rim of gold added, a beautiful touch and I'm already saving my pennies for the bowl I spotted and can't stop thinking about.

The Peaky Squirrel couldn't be anything other than a Birmingham maker could he? ( Though is it wrong to admit I've never ever seen Peaky Blinders? )  New at the Market, and only making since December 2016, The Peaky Squirrel makes handcrafted items from wood salvaged from the streets of the Peaky Blinders.

My final favourite is Holly of Crafty Bun Studios.  A print maker, alongside her film making and photography, I love the lines of her wood cut printing, the simplicity of colour, and, yes, this was another on my "Why didn't I buy that" list.

I think that is the last of this year's Spring Markets, so time to start saving up, and to pop all the dates for the Summer Fairs in my diary.

Birmingham Summer Market . Saturday 10th June
Derbyshire Summer Market . Sunday 2nd July

{ have a happy day }

Friday, April 21

{ happy friday }

Ten lovely things that caught my eye this week.

{ 1 } Etsy find of the week. RLawrenceHandmade. Beautiful machine embroidered stories.
{ 2 } Hello.  Beautiful vintage room with those marvellous pops of mustard.
{ 3 } Hello.  Lovely lampshades with those fabulous faux flowers. 
{ 4 } A Spring collection, styled with blooms, from Spanish label bonnet รก pompon
{ 5 } Pattern making, by Sally Payne ๐ŸŒผ
{ 6 } A chance to win "The New Paris" over on Khoollect.  But be quick.  Ends Sunday.
{ 7 } Magnolia Dream, by Jackie Diedam ๐ŸŒธ
{ 8 } Actually, I can #believeinyourself
{ 9 } A weekend filled with flowers & knitting is my kind of weekend.
{ + } A slice of strawberry almond tea cake would go perfectly with a cup of tea,
which would be the perfect way to celebrate today's National Tea Day.

{ have a happy day }

Wednesday, April 19

{ local ♥︎ . Sparrow+Wolf }

Quirky cute stationery from Birmingham based Sparrow + Wolf.

Happiness is shopping for stationery
{ fact }

It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a person in possession of a new notebook, must be a very happy person.  Though that happiness may be fleeting, as the realisation dawns on them, that this new notebook is supremely pretty & lovely, and therefore how can anything be worthy of putting in the shiny new notebook?

I'm trying very hard to get past this dilemma, having a drawer full of lovely notebooks, too lovely not to buy, yet too lovely to spoil with mere trivia such as notes.  But to justify buying more, I need to use more, and browsing through Sparrow + Wolf's lovely range is incentive enough.

Based not too far from me, in Birmingham, Sparrow + Wolf is Cherie Gregory, whose self admitted obsessions include, bright colours, origami, and doodles, all of which feature in her collection of homewares and stationery.  Her pom pom trimmed cushions are adorable, but as it's National Stationery Week next week, it was her paper goods that I was keen to show you.

Quirky cute stationery from Birmingham based Sparrow + Wolf.
Quirky cute stationery from Birmingham based Sparrow + Wolf.

Quirky cute stationery from Birmingham based Sparrow + Wolf.

Quirky cute stationery from Birmingham based Sparrow + Wolf.
Quirky cute stationery from Birmingham based Sparrow + Wolf.


Almost too lovely to use aren't they?  Or lovely enough to inspire that novel you've always wanted to write, or the daily doodle you promise yourself to doodle, to note down those treasured family recipes.  In a way aren't they almost too lovely not to use?

{ have a happy day }

Sunday, April 16

{ happy easter }


{ happy easter }

Friday, April 14

{ happy friday }

Ten lovely things that caught my eye this week.

{ 1 } Etsy find of the week.  Lili Popo. And her charming Spring Bunny girl.
{ 2 } The most perfect party pack for Easter parties, or those days when you need to feel playful.
{ 3 } The most perfect tutu dress for Easter parties, or those days when you need to feel pretty. 
{ 4 } The most perfect tunic dress for Easter egg hunting.
{ 5 } A beautiful Easter basket for grown-ups.
{ 6 } Just the prettiest Easter tree for your table.
{ 7 } Books & art & poetry ♥︎
{ 8 } Happy Easter.  From me. To you.
{ 9 } Follow the Bunny.  He has the chocolate ๐Ÿฐ
{ + } And in case you needed a little more chocolate for the weekend, ta dah, Easter Brownies.

{ have a happy good friday }

Wednesday, April 12

{ easter tweetings }

five cheeky chirpy chicks
1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

What came first, the chicken or the egg?

Well, on this blog it was the egg.  But the chicks aren't too far behind, and I've found five of the cheekiest and chirpiest for you ahead of this Easter weekend.

// Super fluffy & super cute chicks.  Hatched by Postbox Party.
// Baby chick.  Hatched by Sharon Montrose.
// Super sweet macaron chicks.  Hatched by raspberri cupcakes.
// Easter chick.  Hatched by The Fox in the Attic
// Super fluffy feather filled chick balloon.  Hatched by Bubblegum Balloons.

{ have a chirpy day }

Monday, April 10

{ a few good eggs }

five eggciting easter eggs

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

The sun is shining, I've just spent most of the weekend outside, and it really does feel as if Spring has finally arrived.  And with the long Easter weekend approaching, I think we're all hoping that this lovely weather holds on just a little bit longer.

As last week I shared some very lovely bunnies with you,  this week I've been on the hunt for Easter eggs.  I've resisted the temptation to share the wealth of chocolate eggs out there, instead sharing lovely ideas for eggs of the non-chocolate variety, though in my opinion they are still just as sweet.

// eggs painted & doodled in on-trend hues of copper, pink, black & white.
// eggs painted & hand calligraphed with happy easter wishes.
// the unicorn trend continues unabated.
// the secret language of eggs.
// bunnies + eggs = super cute easter eggs

So, who's now rushing off to turn their eggs into unicorns?

{ have a happy day }

Friday, April 7

{ happy friday }

10 lovely things that caught my eye this week

{ 1 } New in at Zรผ.  Wouldn't these pins make adorable Easter presents?
{ 2 } A sneak peek at Paade Mode's new Autumn collection.  Fabulous florals for Fall.
{ 3 } In Full Bloom at Children's Salon.  Fabulous florals for Summer.
{ 4 } Just love this picture ๐ŸŒธ ๐Ÿฐ ๐ŸŒผ 
{ 5 } Just love these eggs  ๐ŸŒธ ๐Ÿฃ ๐ŸŒผ   
{ 7 } New Instagram crush.  Melia of contemporary_life.  self confessed crazy plant lady.
{ 8 } Which is ok.  'Cos plant lady is the new cat lady.
{ 9 } Etsy find of the week.  Tusk and Twine.  *pops botanical hoop on wish list*
{ + } Is it too soon to start making Easter Cake

{ have a happy day }

Wednesday, April 5

{ inspired#13 . the garden }

. inspired#13 . the garden .
how lovely the silence of growing things
how lovely the silence of growing things
clockwise from centre
1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

A midweek mood board, inspired by the garden.  My garden has been a little neglected over the past couple of years, and the only things growing have been a vast amount of weeds.  I'm hoping that with a little more time on my hands this year that it might be a different story.

Tell me about your garden.  Do you love gardening or loathe it, is it a haven of tranquility, order and calm, or a haven of wildflowers and wildlife?

For a little more garden inspiration pop over to my { in . the . garden } pinterest board.

{ have a happy day }

Monday, April 3

{ it's bunny l♥︎ve }

five little funny bunnies
1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5

This blog post has taken far longer to put together than it should have.  And I'm blaming it all on there being far too much bunny loveliness out there.  Which makes my job of choosing just five, just a little too hard.  Particularly when you're as indecisive as me.

But, as there are many other things on my ToDo list today, here are my favourite few.

// bunnies to brighten up your breakfast from Hop&Peck.
// bunnies to keep your tea warm from Rupert's House.
// some bunny loves you by Giddy Kipper.
// bunny sneakers by Minna Parikka.  ( And yes, they do come in grown-up sizes too! )
// wibbly wobbly wooden rabbit rattles by Kiko+.

I'll resist the temptation to wish you a hOppy day, though as I know you're still thinking about those glittery rabbit sneakers I could have sneaked it past you!

{ have a lovely day }

Saturday, April 1

{ hello April }

. hello April .

{ have a lovely day }