Tuesday, 28 October 2014

An inspiring afternoon with Lesley Jackson

I just love it when my work takes me to interesting places. Today it took me to the beautiful house of curator, writer and design historian Lesley Jackson who it has been an honour to meet.

Lesley got in touch because she wanted to use some of my lamps in her holiday home which she has been lovingly restoring up on the tops. She invited me up for a look. What a place! She has a passion for mid-century design and her house is adorned with incredible printed textiles, ceramics and glass. I was very happy to see one of my Tall Blossom lamps adding a glow to her living room. Lesley has printed textiles hanging like art on her walls and having a tour of the house was an education for me. I haven't paid the world of fabric that much attention until now, when I am trying to make fabrics myself, so it was so interesting to see and feel them and hear about their history.

Lesley has written soooo many books about twentieth century pattern, design, glass, furniture, architecture and her latest book is about Ercol. She knows her stuff. She generously sent me home with some books which I am going to devour.

We sat in her big bay window seat looking out at the rainy green view, sipping tea and talking.  It was like discovering a hidden world and only up the hill. I'm filled up and inspired. I want to make more patterns, to print fabrics, to contribute to the design books of the future....and to have a big sash bay window to sit in myself someday :)

Saturday, 25 October 2014

The Egg Factory

These lovely people have been working reeeeally hard to open a co-working space in Hebden Bridge. It's called called The Egg Factory (it's in the old egg factory building) and they have turned it into a brilliant space for screen printing, workshops, sewing, crafting - you name it. It will be a space 'to hatch and incubate ideas'...

I will say no more and invite you to click here to watch their Indigogo video and find out all about what they are doing. They really are cute!

I've just bought my membership. I hope you feel inspired to support them too :)

Friday, 24 October 2014

The colours of the woods

 I almost didn't go for a walk to the woods this morning as it was so wet when I woke up.

But I needed to smell the air and see the little birds flitting about and laugh at the crazy squirrels making a dash for cover as I approached. So I went anyway.

 When I got up there the sun came out and the light was incredible. 

The rain had only made the colours burn more brightly.

Monday, 20 October 2014

Home Sweet Home

 I have been busy moving house. We have moved back to our small but lovely flat and it SUCH a nice feeling to be home.

We enjoyed living in the big house above the shop and having lots of space and big bedrooms each but it became a bit of a struggle. It was costing me too much to rent it and with Ffion off at uni and Euan away half the week at his Dads, I was rattling around in that big old house on my own too much AND I was becoming more and more frustrated at not being able to nest in it the way I wanted with it being rented.

To move from a big house back to a small flat I needed a mahoosive clear out so for the last few weeks I've been doing some serious cleaning, sorting, packing and ebaying. I have assessed my attachment to every single object that I own in the world and let go of soooooooo much (I can't go in Oxfam right now as everything in there was mine) and I feel so much lighter and brighter!

It's a fresh start.

I am unbelievably happy to be home. Everything feels right. I feel safe and comfortable. Everything has a place. It's easy to live in. It's cosy and warm. In hindsight it feels like we've just been camping in someone else's house and now we are properly HOME and we can relax. Ahhhh :)

The cats are happy too. Tomsk waits by the cupboard that I USED to keep his food in, even though it's now in a different place! They know where all the warm spots are...

...where the sunbeams fall.

So I'm nesting. Finding places for all the special and sweet things that I have collected over the years. These are Natasha Newton's painted Stones.

 Wire chairs by Mel Day that I fell in love with at OWL in Frome.

Cleo Mussi mosaic hands.

Jane Muir Snowbirds.

My print from Kyoto sits nicely above the fireplace.

 I'm happy to have my old computer desk back too. I've been sitting here today learning how to use Lightroom (photo software) so I thought I'd experiment with some pictures of my new home and share them on the blog.

I had been craving a comfortable light filled house full of plants and wood, with places for my special crafty things, a colourful kitchen for cooking and sharing, a space for my yoga. I've been craving a place to call my own again. 

I thought I needed to buy a new house to have that because coming back to the flat would've been going backwards BUT I have learned (hooray) that bigger is not necessarily better and going backwards is the new going forwards!

Monday, 15 September 2014

On The Tops

When you live in the valley bottom it's good to get out on the tops and yesterday my top dwelling friend Karen took me on one of her walks around Gorple reservoir.

Trudging and  talking is always a good way to catch up with a friend.

These weather beaten reservoir gate posts were such good colours.

There's not many tree's up there on the moors which made this big old beech tree stand out majestically.

 These stone pathways are so satisfying to walk on.

The heather was turning and the colours were awesome.

So many feathers along the way.

We made is back just in time for the sunset.

Thursday, 4 September 2014

Liberty Open Call

Last Saturday I went down to London to The Best of British Open Call at Liberty. This is a rare opportunity for designers to go to the store to meet the buyers face to face and show them their work. 

People start queuing early with boxes, cases, furniture, clothing and all sorts and everyone is full of nervous excitement!  When I arrived at 7.30 am there were already about 200 people before me. When the shop doors open at 9 am the queue filters up and up the spiral stairs to the top floor where the buyers are waiting.

 It was lovely feeling like a part of this beautiful shop.  It is so polished and old and utterly beautiful, full of quality and craftsmanship. I visited the day before to have a look at the wallpaper department and I was happy that I thought my book would nestle in quite comfortably.

The buyers were so lovely and they liked my wallpapers a lot. I'm ever so happy about that as you can imagine :)

I'm looking forward to hearing from them again soon.

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Wallpaper dresses in the Yorkshire post

Remember my blogpost about the dresses that Victoria Robinson made from my wallpaper?

Well they made it into this lovely article in the Yorkshire post while I was away on holiday.

The lovely Victoria modeled them herself. 

Doesn't she look lovely!

Friday, 22 August 2014

Allium afternoon

 This afternoon I've been drawing and photographing last years Allium seed heads from my Mum's garden.

Such amazing structures.

With crazy seed pods.

Thursday, 21 August 2014

A sweet gift from Japan

I had a visit from these lovelies recently. The two ladies on the right are sisters. Keiko (in the stripey dress) lives in the UK with husband Leigh and cute baby Sakura and Yoko lives in Osaka. They have both been readers of my blog and after they had read about my Japan trip they made contact and we talked for a while about how to get my lamps to Japan. 

Yoko surprised me with this lovely gift. She remembered my blog post about our Sunday morning trip to the most beautiful craft fair in Kyoto and how much I liked the chopping boards made by Babbo Craft


What a sweet thought. All the happy memories of our Japan trip came flooding back.

Yoko has recently started her own website called Momo selling Japanese Craft. There are lots of beautiful things to choose from, chopping boards included!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

All The Luck In The World

Amsterdam has the kind of shops that make me wish I had a shop... in the split second before I realise that I  DO have a shop! Oh good. Then it is time to be inspired :)

We were very taken with this one in De Pijp called All The Luck In The World. It's nice to learn that it is a mother and daughter duo. We were mother and daughter shoppers too and both loved it at much as each other.

We discovered it at night and waited until 1pm on Sunday for it to open. We had to leave at half past to catch our plane so we didn't have long.

It's a beautiful mix of vintage and contemporary homewares, linens, jewellery, lighting and furniture.

All gorgeous.

I'm so looking forward to visiting again...with an empty suitcase next time!

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