Button *Card Purse

A Surprise Gift

Don’t you just love pink? There are so many shades of pink, (even in yarn) sometimes its just hard to decide on one single colour. I wanted to make a pink striped purse and use a big ‘ol button – just for something a little different and fun. I was thinking about candy floss and pockets full of the sweet pink fluffy stuff.

Making the purse, I had a little admirer watching me at home. She fell in love with the stripes. (She loves Strawberries and ice cream she said and this reminded her of her favourite desert). Every other day I would show her my progress and she would look close to see the stitches and was fascinated to see how it was being built up into a finished purse. She was so delighted once the button had gone on. She said that it was “just perfect” and “so her”. She loved it so much and was nearly in tears with “aw’s” and “beautiful’s”. I immediately felt this purse was meant for her, she couldn’t stop staring at it and so, I gave to her as a gift. She was a very grateful recipient and I’ve not had such a big hug and kiss in a very long time 🙂

It’s nice to know you’ve had a positive impact on someone’s day (you never know what they’re going through) and that what you’ve made is appreciated and loved. It’s such a warm fuzzy feeling to watch as someone’s face lights up with surprise and gratitude. Giving sure is a rewarding experience, which we should all try do a little more often!

 

Oh yes, I nearly forgot to show you – I’ve also made a little *Card pouch in shades of pink. I’m using one of these at the moment and they sure do come in handy!

Peach Rose *Card Purse

Summer has decided to exit early it seems. The glorious hot days have slowly dwindled into wet grey skies and sadly, I’m not entirely sure it will recover in time for Autumn to wave it’s hello’s.

Running has taken up a lot of my time. No doubt those who follow me on Instagram, Facebook and the running apps such as Garmin Connect or Strava have seen the streams of photos. The beautiful views that I have found all over this island (accompanied by glorious weather) has distracted me from crochet quite a lot keeping me outside and in the fresh air.

I’ve been training to do a 10km run which I am hugely excited about, especially given that a little over a year ago I wasn’t sure I could do a single mile having both feet in ‘recovery’ from the pretty drastic surgeries I’d had. In January I managed to run my first ever 5km park run! I’ve been doing regular runs since. A little while ago, I signed up to do the Guernsey Mind 10Km race in September. Guernsey Mind is a mental health charity that works to raise awareness of mental health issues on the island and I really wanted to take part to help raise funds, highlight the importance of exercise in combatting things like depression/anxiety (both of which I suffer) and prove to myself that nothing is impossible when you do something you love and are passionate about. Never let anyone tell you ‘no’ or ‘you can’t’… With some hard work, a dash of perseverance and of course the much needed support from my coach, Louise, you can accomplish impossible things.

Not that I mind running in the rain (it’s actually quite fun) (I just don’t like strong winds that stop you in your tracks) but, I was injured a couple of weeks ago and so have been forced to stay indoors. And so, getting back to the other passion in my life to keep my misery of not being able to run at bay, I’ve had the opportunity to finish the Peach Rose *Card purse. (I’ve also made a few other things – but that is for another blog post).

For this purse, I used a rose which I’ve recycled from an old hair pin. It’s more of a pink colour than a peach, but tones in beautifully with the soft pinks and peach stripes. I’m not sure where I’d source any more roses of this quality or size, so if you have any ideas, please, I’d love to hear from you as I just love how this rose looks on the crochet purse and am inspired to do more! Peach Rose *Card purse will be in my Etsy shop from tonight.

Happy Sunday everyone!

Nina

Pottery Painting for Christmas

Not so long ago I was invited to an evening pottery at a local pottery business called Iris and Dora. Iris and Dora host parties for kids (or adults) where you get to choose from over 100 bisque pieces ranging from mugs to egg cups, tea candles to Christmas ornaments and get to decorate with paint to your hearts content. The parties are great fun, especially for creative souls like me – you can bring your own wine and snacks, or have a coffee or tea and the shop is always filled with like-minded friendly creative people. I’ve met a few new people and glad to say a few new friends and always feel welcome.

I wanted to make Jeremy a Christmas present.  I had in mind a bowl for him to store his ever growing amount of chillies – he loves them but usually has them scattered about all over the place and cant find them.

I started out painting one ‘abstract’ chilli on the side and although it looked ok, I had this creative spark and felt I just had to fill  the whole bowl with chillies 🙂

I had to return a few times after the initial 3 hour party and landed up spending 13hours in total painting (and that’s not a complaint) I landed up having a great time with my new friends at the same time. Once sat down to paint, amazingly the hours would fly by and I was reluctant to go home!

Once finished with the painting, the bowl was taken away to be dipped in glaze and fired in the kiln. While waiting for the potters to fire the bowl ready to collect, I was trying to source a collection of fresh chillies to put in the bowl to wrap up for Christmas. One hot Christmas present I’d say 🙂

I’m really pleased with the outcome (have you noticed its even in Christmas colours!) and think I may have discovered another creative avenue which I could really get into!

J's chilli bowl glazed and fired ready for Christmas

I hope you all had an amazing Christmas and are preparing for celebrating the close of 2017 and welcoming in of a fantastic New Year with style!

Nina

Catch up – Shilo’s Seahorse purse

When I said we were moving house, I didn’t quite expect the move to impact my creative work so much as it has. I’ve hardly had any time for much, except for a few stolen hours for a much needed head space in the form of a run. We’ve moved house and that’s only half the story. We’ve actually moved in with my 91 year old mother in law. A lovely lady and now that we’re here, I can see exactly why this move was much needed as she is very hard of hearing, getting tinier by the day and generally not been up to much in regards to house maintenance (which you can forgive her for – as much as she doesn’t want to admit it, she is no spring chicken)! I’ve been kept busy with cleaning mostly as her failing eyesight has clearly missed more than a few spots here and there and trying to clear out what I can and trying really hard not to step on her toes. 50 (plus) years my senior, I’m finding trying to change her old habits a little tough, she is ever so independent, so have to tread lightly and coax my way of thinking to get things done. For example, she’s so used to being on her own trying to do everything herself, I have to really bite my tongue when the little old lady tries to bring out the Hoover (which I might add is roughly the same size as her) and then gets annoyed with me for trying to carry it for her. I was caught red handed moving the sofas and tv to give the sitting room a good ol once over and I can tell you this upset her so badly, I think I may never attempt that one again. The invisible power struggle is a little tough at times, but I think we’ll get there.

Not quite the end of 2017 I was hoping for last year. I was sure I’d be knee deep in Christmas crafts. I’ve seen so many wonderful things and had so many ideas, I’ve had to jot them down but who knows where those papers are now! But it has been an important task, I know my mother in law, as much as she protests, really does need all the love and attention she can get now and any little bit I’m doing for her is greatly appreciated.

So to catch up on some of the things I have managed to do in between all the household changes (there have only been a handful), I thought I’d start with a post about Shilo’s purse, which I completed prior to our move.

A friend contacted me. Apparently Shilo loves handmade things and would appreciate a purse. My friend already picked out the design she wanted months ago we’d discussed it long before and I knew it was coming. But then suddenly,  it was getting close to her birthday and so I set off to make a *seahorse purse 😊

I’d sent the photos off and was asked if I could personalize it and add her name? I probably tried about a dozen different ways but eventually settled for her name to be embroidered in the water bubbles. This seahorse, for some reason (even though I followed the same pattern as before, turned out a little larger than the first, but I actually love how his tail curls around the bottom.

I hope you had a wonderful birthday Shilo! Our friend loves you very much ❤️

I’ll be back soon with some more catch up stories.

Nina

Rose *Card Purse

The two purses are now on their way to their new home. It took a lot of time, but I really enjoyed making these. The Forever Spring Garden and Rose purses’ were ordered in time to be part of the funds I’ve donated to Lisa. It almost spurred me on to make the very best purses I could, thinking of Lisa with every bead sewn every flower and rose created.

I haven’t been updating my blog much recently and I apologise for not being around much to read my fellow bloggers posts, but I plan on doing a mass catch up over the next few days. It has been an emotional journey – the #MakeHerDay event I ran on Facebook created a huge response. Messages from people all over the world sending well wishes and praises for my work. I had an emotional cry nearly every day of the whole of June.

I learned only once the custom order was about to set sail, that my customer too is fighting her very own battle with Cancer. Not only that, she also knows what I am going through with a sister going through the same. I was so moved. Here she was, helping me support Lisa with her order, when she too deserves the very best support and love too. She doesn’t yet know (but probably will do once she reads this post) I have included a little something extra in the parcel just for her as a gift from me to say thanks and wish her and her sister all the best in their battle too.

Here is the completed Rose *Card Purse

All my love to you

Nina

 

 

Forever Spring Garden overview

Firstly, I want to thank everyone who ordered one or two things in my shop over June. The final total raised for Lisa turned out to be £350! Lisa is a rather extraordinary person and sure does deserve as much love and support anyone can give. My sister has had cancer many times from starting with her initial cancer diagnosis at about 2 years old.  After several battles with the big C, she was eventually diagnosed with “LFS” (Li-Fraumeni Syndrome) which resulted from genetic testing. Without going too much into this, very basically it means that Lisa is missing a gene in her DNA which has tumour suppresser tendencies. Unfortunately, without careful monitoring and crucial management, Lisa is more likely to have (certain) cancers at any point. Last year I had done a fund raising to help pay for the genetic testing which worked out wonderfully, but Lisa is very shy and was not happy with the idea of asking for more help.

Cancer has many complications. There are the countless surgeries complex and minor, after surgeries, there’s the chemotherapy and the complications on your body from taking the “essential” poison, there’s the side effects and necessary procedures following treatment of the tumour, the life long testing, the emotional trauma… the list just goes on forever. Unfortunately, the medical world is not a funny place to be dependant on when you have a unique history such as Lisa’s with multiple cancer diagnosis’. Your medical insurances don’t last forever and there are always limitations on the help from the “bank of Mom and Dad”. Over this last month I have concentrated my efforts, despite her shy objections to raise some funds to help her. I’ve been very clear, the funds made in my shop she can choose to help pay medical bills, however I want her to have something to look forward to so, however she decides to use the funds – she will have some pennies available to hopefully take some stress off her and focus on something fun.

Included in the monies raised, I had been contacted for a custom order. Two purses. One a “Rose *Card Purse” and the other a “Forever Spring Garden *Card Purse”.

I’m still working on the Rose purse, but I have finished the Garden purse. This design has been quite popular. I think each one made may be ever so slightly different from the one before, however, all have the same concept. a garden frozen in time, forever in Spring.

Here is the latest one which also fits credit cards:

I thought I might show you the timeline – the evolution of this purse from the first one made:

Quite a difference when you see them together like that 🙂

I’ll show you the Rose Purse once I’ve managed to complete it.

Happy Sunday everyone!

Nina

Two favourites

Following my last blog post Rainbow Cloud *Card Purse I’d put the purse on my shop listings and within minutes of the post being published, the purse was sold! Thank you – the proceeds of this will also be going to my sister. I’ve had requests for more another. So you can see what I’ve been busy with this weekend – making a second Rainbow Cloud *Card Purse and can see that this sweetheart purse is going to be quite popular!

Another popular design – the Cherry Blossom *Card purse has also been finished off and added to my shop listings.

Happy Sunday – and a HAPPY FATHERS DAY to all the Dad’s out there.

Nina

Rainbow Cloud *Card Purse

“Try to be a rainbow in someone’s cloud” – Maya Angelou

So I’ve come to an end of a stressful situation. It’s not often I make a stand for myself, but when I do, I find it incredibly hard and believe me – it has to be a particularly hard push to get me to that point of just saying ‘enough’. Its so much easier to let things go by to “save the peace”.  On review, lessons learnt are that if the things you’ve tried to change are not working out or won’t change and when things are not right, its ‘ok’ to just let go and move on in the best way you can.

Amidst it all, I came across the above quote. It was beautiful. I wanted to be that rainbow in someone’s cloud.  I want to be remembered for the positive things I’ve done. I want to be recognised for my achievements. I had tried hard and really thought I was that rainbow. Doubt crept in.  

Out of the blue it hit me. Like a ton of bricks… I am! I am a rainbow in many other clouds. 

I’ve come to realise that actually, I am a big ‘ol shinning glittery and sparkly full HD rainbow deluxe! Especially to the relationships that matter most to me. And it feels great!

This purse design is dedicated to all my friends and family who have helped me through this time by reminding me that even faded rainbows in dark clouds can brighten up with a little sunlight and for some magical reason, shine best in clouds you love.

Be a rainbow in someone’s cloud. Always.

 

 

Something bright for the light in your life ☀️

Looking for a little Summer fun? Look no further than the Candy Stripe *Card Purse. This sweet purse will suit any age. Sweet and simple.

Another purse inspired by a beautiful find on a jog – a whole hedge covered in hues of pinks, oranges, purples and yellows. I just had to try replicate the display. Isn’t it pretty?

IMG_1869

From the brightness of the flowers, comes the brightness of the purse…

I’m really enjoying finding inspiration in the sights and views on a jog… I wonder what I’ll find next time 🙂

 

 

Something different

I wanted to try something a little more “arty”, after all crochet is an art form. A “Let the creative energy flow and see what I could come up with” idea.

I started, unlike with the other purses, with the fabric! I loved this fabric – grey with little specs of reds / yellows / peaches here and there.

Grey Speckle *Card Purse (Fabric lining)

I happened to have two tones of grey yarn and so I set out on an adventure. The grey cauldron had gone through several frogging. First I tried crocheting one stitch dark, next stitch light grey. Then I tried one row dark, next row light grey. I even tried dark bottom, light top. In the end I preferred the four bands of contrasting greys.

I had in mind an image of the grey purse with splashes of red (to compliment the fabric) scattered over the one section of grey. It worked! It looked fab, however, something was missing. I thought – “why not try adding another colour?”, after all the fabric didn’t only use red dots. Once the second colour splashes were filled in, I was ready for another and so it kept evolving. AND it was such fun!

There seems to be a fine line between  something that’s been made “elegantly simple” and something which looks to be “over worked”. It’s knowing when to stop working on something before it becomes hideous that is tricky. I think I’ve achieved that in this purse and I’m really quite impressed with this little “arty” purse (even if I say so myself) 🙂

If you think you’d like this purse or want to get someone a little something special, you can find it in my shop. As mentioned in my previous post, any sales until 1 July 2017 will be going to help brighten my sisters day.