Monday, 26 September 2011

Cherries and other assorted jiggery pokery ....

I'm thinking about starting a new line in some simple, but funky jewellery ... like this cherry necklace I've just finished as a commission for a friend ....

I'm thinking cherries ... strawberries ... maybe Halloween and other holidays .... what do you think ?
I know times are hard and money is scarce, but we all still need a little colour in our lives, don't we eh ? 

Please let me know via the comment box below this post whether you think a basic range would be a nice idea :)

I  shall make a pendant and hold a random draw for a freebie :)
I'll hold a random draw of all the people who have commented their thoughts after this post at the end of the week .... that'll be September 30th :)

Wednesday, 21 September 2011

New BHB's just listed for sale this evening ...

2 posts from me in one evening ... that's really going some for me !!!

But here you are .... I have finally taken the plunge and started to make those fabled Big Holed Beads ... you know ... the ones that are compatible with Pandora or Troll bracelet systems ... here's the link :)

Click here to see my new BHB's

Thanks for looking ... I hope someone out there likes them :) ??

Ooohhh .. how lovely !!!!

Some of my little tweety birds have been featured in a web tutorial by the very lovely Trish Latimer of Beads and Beyond  !!!!

The web tutorial accompanies October's issue ...

Here's the link ..... why not give it a go yourself ??

Monday, 12 September 2011

Found these under the kitchen cupboards .....

*sigh* .... original Minton tiles !!!!!!!
Shame I'll not be here long enough to warrant any further investigation though, but oh how pretty they would have looked way back when ! :)

Friday, 9 September 2011

I've been taking advantage of the lovely weather !

And this is what I have achieved today .... and with an achey back too !!!

Before ...

After ....

NASTY old lino now hacked up and bagged, ready for the tip ...nettle roots pulled up ...
Some of the ground elder removed and one very satisfied gardener :)

I also took photos of some focal beads earlier ... which have now disappeared into the laptop to god knows where ... and yes, you guessed it ... I deleted them from the card as I uploaded them ... DOH !!!!!

But I don't mind that so much .... both my kids have come home from school today and have informed me that they are in the top sets at school in pretty much all subjects !!!
I am especially proud of Sam ... he's in top sets for languages, maths, english, BTEC, and Sciences !!!!

*proud mum*


Friday, 2 September 2011

Oh and I made these too ....

... just the glassy bits though ....

And can I PLEASE live here ??
Thank you .. bye bye x

This time next year Rodney .....

I WILL have a great garden !!!!

For almost a year and a half, to two years, I have had an embarrassing pile of rubbish built up in the garden ... I can't actually believe that it got into the state that it did ... it was so bad, I never took a 'before' photo for this project !

Over the last few weeks, with Rob, we've been doing lots of runs to the local tip and this is what I now have .... I can see soil once again !!!!!! All I need to do now is bag up that nasty old lino and get rid of a few metal table legs ....

You won't have seen just how bad it was before hand, so this photo will probably just look like a huge mess to you .... believe me .. this is an amazing change so far !!

Over the Autumn, I am going to start to clear, dig over and condition this patch of ground ... by spring, I shall have a vegetable patch ... I am determined to have one ... After sampling Rob's produce, I really think that I should be growing my own ... they taste SO much better that supermarket veg .... and totally organic too !

So, for posterity, here is the (still a bit bad) before shot of my veggie corner ...

To give you an idea of scale .. the shed is 7'x5' .... this patch is about 8' x 4'
Plenty of room for some yummy veggies !
I must try to remember to post a progress blog post from time to time :)
I despise city living, but I hope that having my own little patch to tend will make it feel a little nicer here :)

I hope you all have a lovely weekend, what ever you are up to ... I won't be gardening this weekend though, as I am off camping ... yay !!!

Thursday, 1 September 2011

The first day of Autumn !

Good morning ... it's been a wee while, hasn't it !

What a glorious start to the Autumn isn't it ! Well I know we've not yet reached the equinox, but the 1st is (weather wise), the first official day of Autumn.

I have been noticing signs of the changing season for quite some time though ... the rowan berries were out much earlier than usual ... berries in general have appeared a bit earlier than last year, and even the acorn's ( so Rob noticed ) have been fattening up much earlier .... sign of a bad winter to follow, apparently ....

I do have to admit to the growing sense of relief too, that the summer break is almost over now .... my lot go back to school on the 7th !! Ahh ... the glorious 7th !!! It's been a LONG summer !!!!
It was lovely to get a week in North Wales at the start of the holidays, but we've not really done much at all for the rest of the summer break ... boredom is well and truly here now !

I am really looking forward to getting my days to myself again soon, so that I can really crack on and get some new beads made ... it's been hard work over the summer !

One thing I did manage to get done this summer though .... my very first solo bead fair ! It was a mad rush to make enough stock, but I managed a table at The 5th Annual Bead Fair at Stourbridge. The run up to it was stressful .... I was nervous about how well it would go for days before, but I had a fantastic day !
It was such a relief to FINALLY get my first bead fair under my belt :) I met so many old friends ... new ones too, and drank LOTS of coffee !
I had a good day (sales wise), too ... although I made more sales from the stuff I never thought would sell, and didn't sell a lot of the new stock, so I am now giving myself some time off from beading and just getting my stock gradually listed for sale on Etsy instead. The house is a wreck anyway, so it deserves some attention now that Stourbridge is behind me :)

I'm also looking forward to a night of camping on Saturday ... even if it rains, I don't care !!! We have been given a 5 man tent and we've still not managed to use it, so we are going to road test it before taking the kids anywhere in it :)
I can't wait to get back up into the Peak District !

So .... summer is almost over ... Autumn is on it's way and I can't wait for the leaves to start turning ... it'll soon be Halloween too !!!

So I figured I'd end today's rambling with a couple of Autumnal photographs ... hope you like ....

Hope you have a lovely day :) I'm off to catch up with a bit more housework, then maybe make some jewellery for a local gallery ... bye for now :)

Monday, 11 July 2011

New life !!!!!

It's been SO very long since I last blogged ... so I am going to attempt to rectify this terrible habit of blog neglect :)

Well ... I don't really know where to start ... life is a strange old thing, isn't it ... just when you are just about to give up on it, it throws you a lifeline !

My lifeline came back in May, in the form of Rob ... it's a very long story really ... about 15 odd years long actually :)

Many years ago, I started a relationship with a wonderful, caring, thoughtful guy ... but as with so many things in life that don't work out, it just wasn't our time I don't think ... he always was 'the one' for me, and over the years I have bumped through life, never quite settling with anyone, and making some pretty questionable relationship choices.

Anyway .. fast forward to 2011 and the fates decided it was finally time to smile on us and he came looking for me :)

So here I am .... I never for a minute figured that having such momentous but good things happen would be so tiring ( in a creative sense ), but it has been .. and still is really, but I am getting used to this whole new way of being, slowly but surely :) I still find it hard to focus though ... I have so many thoughts, dreams and plans flying around in my tiny brain, still, but I am getting there and starting to feel more settled and grounded now :)

Now is the time to start to focus on building the business ... there will be no more misery, stress, frustration, depression ... and lots more happiness instead :)

I have so many new inspirations right now ... they are slowly starting to formulate themselves into concrete plans and designs ... Rob has enriched my life in so many ways .. but what is having the biggest influence on my work at the moment, are  the beautiful sites that he is showing me :)

I have always loved stone circles and BEAUTIFUL countryside, but have just never managed to get to see them ... but now... finally, I can !
I don't think I will ever stop being grateful to karma, and to Rob for enriching my life so much !

Anyway ... I shall stop waffling on for now, and share just a few of the beautiful sights that I have seen just lately ... I need to get to work after my coffee :)

Thursday, 24 March 2011

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

A cheeky purchase

I was so pleased to have a good run of sales this morning, so I decided to take the plunge and buy this ...

Can't wait to have a play !!!!!!!

I'm hoping for some nice beads to list for sale tomorrow too ... I shall need to replace what I have spent today, so that I can pay some bills... I can be so naughty sometimes !!!

Monday, 21 March 2011

Mini Visual journey ...

I just thought ( for posterity ) that I'd leave myself a mini visual diary of the way that my Matryoshka's have progressed .... I wonder where I will take them ? I can't seem to stop making them at the moment ...

Here is the fabric that first inspired me ...

Here are the first 2 I tried to make ... not great, but a start ...

Here are the rest ...

Phew ... there ... that's pretty much all of them.
All in one spot for me and maybe others to look back on :)

Have a lovely day all xx

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Went for a walk in the countryside ....

It's been a little while since I posted a blog .... I think that sometimes, I just get stuck in the day to day routine of trying to work ... clean house and see to the kids, and I forget to think about things.

This tuesday was different though :) My lovely friend, Milton, took me out for the day and we went for a ramble through some beautiful Shropshire countryside. Now, Shropshire ( I am sorry to admit), has never really got me too fired up before. I now know that the reason is purely that it's a county I have never visited before, and so I have never had the chance to appreciate.

We were blessed with a beautiful day on Tuesday ... the sun was up and the sky was blue, pretty much all day.
We started by having a wander around the gorgeous little town of Much Wenlock.
The place is just beautiful !!!! Lots of lovely old and quaint buildings, and the ruins of an Abbey could be peered at over a high wall. Shame the Abbey ruins were closed really ... they'll be open in April though.

Here's a picture I found on the net ..... it'd be lovely to go back and walk around the place when it's open to the public though ..

After a slap up breakfast in a lovely little cafe, we went for a drive up to Wenlock Edge.
What a lovely, lovely place to wander around ... we went on a walk along the edge, up past an old quarry, and caught some beautiful views through breaks in the trees, down into the valley.
Shame we couldn't get a picture really, but it was just fantastic looking down and watching two red kites below in the valley, hunting ... just awesome !!

I decided to do the artsy black and white thing with this view down into the valley...

After walking along the Edge, we decided to drive through Church Stretton and up the Long Mynd .... it was absolutely gorgeous up there .... my kind of countryside ... much more hilly and open to the elements.
We even saw someone's hang gliding rig sitting there ... the owners were in a car drinking hot coffee .... waiting for the right wind, I suppose 

This is The Long Mynd ... taken by a proper photographer ( searched on google)

And here is one taken with my point and shoot, hehe

And here's the rig and wind sock ... see how windy it was !...

All in all I had the best day out !!! A great mate ... plenty of fresh air and some much needed exercise !!

Here are a few more pics I wanted to share, and then a couple of beads that I felt inspired to make ...

And some beads ...

I had a wonderful day out ... took some lovely photographs to remember it by ... I ached SO much as I am SO out of shape, but it was worth the aches for the inspiration gained :)

Thanks for letting me share a lovely day with you :)

lesley xx

Tuesday, 22 February 2011

Taking it easy today ...

Well kind of ... I've spent the morning tearing my hair out, trying to take half decent bead photographs. The light is so dull that's it's almost impossible to get a decent image that doesn't need photoshopping half to death.

So how's it been going since I last posted ?
Slow - ish really. Steady, but slow. I think that when my partner first lost his job, I kind of panicked and threw myself into accepting every sniff of a commission, but then I started struggling to keep to deadlines, so I had to apologise to a few customers and slow down a little bit.
My biggest problem / fear is creative burnout. The pressure on me to be creative and productive when I am the sole earner in the family can be horrendous at times, but regardless of how I might be feeling, the bills still have to be paid, so I try and just plod on most of the time.

If it wasn't for all of my wonderful customers though, my mortgage and other bills simply wouldn't get paid, so I shouldn't really complain. I feel privileged to be able to sell what I enjoy making so much :)

So other life stuff ... I still have a bad shoulder. The physiotherapist thinks it's tendonitis, and is giving me some exercises to do. It's not much better yet, but I haven't lost any more movement, so that has to be positive.
I just wish that when it hurts, it didn't hurt quite so much.

My middley had his birthday at the weekend .... 13 already .... teenager number 2 to try to survive, LOL
He's getting so grown up now ... he went bowling with a friend instead of me taking him bowling .. I guess that at 13, bowling with Mum just isn't the done thing anymore *sigh*
The whole family pooled his birthday money and he is now the owner of his very first console ! It's so quiet here now, haha .... I wouldn't normally allow him to spend hours at a stretch on it, but it's new, and it's half term, so I'll let him have his fun for now :)

Anyway ... that's pretty much it from me for now... so I'll round up today's post with a few new bead pictures

If you got this far, reading ... congratulations ! LOL

Enjoy the rest of your day :)