Category: Creative

Blooming Marvellous x

I never like this time of year; the glitter and sparkle of Christmas has been packed away, the weather is cold, grey, rain, the garden is sleeping, the shops are full of unwanted crap, and Netflix has been over eaten to the point of explosion.  But there is a little silver lining, a sliver of what’s to come, the turning of the tide: Indoor bulbs. Now is the time to raid charity shops, find big bowls and fill with your hearts delight.

 

(All pics Pinterest)

 

The second wave of wonder is, once they’re over, they can be planted in the garden. And the bowls are ready for giant summer salads…

 

Laters, Kate x

Sashiko x

 

I love this; a functional marriage between the fragility of these crocheted leaves and the darning of these jumpers. The message being that old things can be treasured, worn things aren’t bad and that imagination is precious. These are all examples of Sashiko, a form of decorative reinforcement stitching from Japan, (though it also reminds me of Indian Kantha quilts). Every piece has been given some much needed love, transformed and given new life.

 

 

(All pics Pinterest)

It’s the sort of message I like for the start of a decade.

Laters, Kate x

Light Up x

 

I often wonder, do people like Champagne because of the taste, or the associations?  It raises that question of how much of life do we see through filters of branding and subliminal messages? Step away from what you’re supposed to want and a whole other world can open up.  For instance, this lighting is from Homeof, a relatively new brand formed by Helen White and Michael Jones, ex-BHS lighting designers who decided to go it alone.  Remember BHS lighting? How brilliant it was? A high street wonder…the ethos here is very similar, but oh so much slicker…


(All pics Homeof and Pinterest)

 

This is designer looks, because they’re designed by exceptional designers, with the experience to know what the high street wants, and the eye to push boundaries for the perfect product, at a price point that’s genuinely affordable.

 

I, for one, am sold.

Laters, Kate x

Smile x

 

In the summer, in Greece, I hunt down the old fashioned souvenir shops that still sell the shell based surfer chokers of old for a few euros, then layer them up. A look akin to a mash up between a Masai warrior (is that cultural appropriation – or cultural celebration?) and a sun bleached beach bum. The jewellery of Roxanne Assoulin gives me the same joyful feeling – and for those still on the present hunt, the price point is a Christmas treat (£70 – £350) but not in the mortgage your left kidney and sell your soul to the devil bracket.


(All pics Roxanne Assoulin and Pinterest)

 

It also helps that her ‘story’ page makes me laugh. You can either read it as I don’t care, or you can see it as a pithy comment on the modern disease to manufacture and self promote.

 

For me it’s the later.

Laters, Kate x

Angelic x

Top guilty pleasure: watching Escape to the Chateau. An intoxicating mix of laughter, love, creativity and embracing with full hearted wholesomeness all the best things in life, with a happy two fingers to convention.  For those new to this rare delight, the programme follows a couple – Dick and Angel Strawbridge – and their transformation of a 45 room chateau into a business and a place of beauty.  For those already under it’s spell, did you know Angel has started producing her own wallpaper, fabric and cushions commercially? All based on either old wallpapers found in the Chateau or her own design….

Heaven, sliced up and presented on a gorgeous vintage plate, garnished with love.

Laters, Kate x

Christmas x

I’ve learnt the hard way – set a time and set it early for Christmas crafts, otherwise days will fly past and time will be eaten by nothing. My time is Saturday afternoons: A week to plan and gather bits, an open fire, a family film = perfection.


This Saturday we started with interpreting and making these, found on Pinterest, and as ever, it was a learning curve.  We used Inkjet printable Iron on T-shirt Fabric paper for light fabrics bought from Amazon for £11.99. Whilst it does work, the material you use is critical – we had to change from a coarser cotton to a smoother version.  Also a simple thing, but important – you need to cut out all the background and leave a white margin – it does something important to the eye.

 

This, for me, is the spirit of Christmas. Pour me a large one.

Laters, Kate x

Madness with love x

A fusion made in heaven: Tall candlesticks – already an object of desire because of their perfect balance of functionality with beauty – now upgraded to lust level with whimsy, madness and imagination.  Apparently these lovelies were originally from Anthropologie, and – apologies – are both unavailable and required deep pockets (I saw them priced at $395 each). But their joy is the love they continue to radiate in inspiration, because when should price stop anyone?

I particularly love this pic, and can only doff my hat to the skillful drilling it must’ve entailed. Muchus Kudos.

Quite a few examples have used glass: I have no idea what kind of glue they used, or how long the bonds would last, but how appealing for a Christmas table…

(All pics Pinterest)

 

And then there’s this little beauty, a hybrid of many things, including a brutal yet fanciful version of Japanese Kinsugi, the art of finding strength in the broken.

 

Come to Mama.

Laters, Kate x

Leaves, left, gone..

First came the stone art post, little gems of time and love, nestled in their creative blankets.  Now it’s leaves with crochet.  Moments of change caught forever; the turning of the tide from summer to autumn, the passing of another year. Less decoration, more frosting, ice crystals made permanent.  Delicate representations of fragility and tenderness.


(All pics Susanna Bauer and Pinterest)

 

Because why does purpose always have to lead?

Laters, Kate x

Layers of ethos x

Why do I love Toast so much? Let me count the ways…authentic, wholesome yet elusively stylish and contemporary, it’s a brand that manages to mix the products it sells with the ethos it promotes.  For example, these handblown glass baubles at £35 for 5 will be on my wish list this Christmas, not for decorating the tree, but to add to chandeliers all year round – the present element is a Brucie bonus.

(All pics Toast and Pinterest)

If you’re a maker then this bit of information I found on their website could be of real interest to you:

The TOAST New Makers programme will support and mentor five emerging makers. We will offer production, design, business and marketing advice, as well as a digital and physical platform to sell their pieces with full profits being returned to them.

The programme is open to makers of all disciplines. We are seeking makers who use sustainable materials, demonstrate skilled craftsmanship, share an appreciation of texture and colour and have an understanding of thoughtful, functional design.

If you are an emerging maker and would like to apply, please submit your application before 12pm, Wednesday 18th December 2019. The shortlist will be selected by an internal TOAST panel. Please note that this programme is open to all new makers, wherever you may be in the world.

 

It’s almost the perfect Christmas gift…

Laters, Kate x

X marks the spot..

There’s  a delicate balance when it comes to Christmas: too early is crass, too late misses the boat.  And there’s another element now that seems to be sneaking in..that too much is just…too much.  Both sides of my family have thought about how to change expectations.  On one side we do a secret Santa, one person each with a price limit.  On the other side it was suggested last year for handmade presents only, something that requires thought and time.  I would love to make the above.

(All pics Pinterest)

So I’m going to: Why should doing the right thing need universal agreement?

Laters, Kate x