Sunday, 26 October 2014

Rug -> bag

Oh, handbags! So necessary, so nice, and sometimes so troublesome. A few months ago mine broke, and since then I've been searching for the perfect new bag to carry all the rubbish that I seem to feel it necessary to tote around with me. I tried a few out, but none were quite right - usually either not big enough, or too tricky to find little bits like keys in quickly. We were in IKEA a couple of weekends ago for some much needed bits, and (despite my promises of no impulse buys!) a SIGNE rug caught my eye. Now, we have all the rugs we need, but there's something about the rough robustness of the weave that I loved, so I decided I'd make my perfect bag out of it. I really only have two demands from a bag: that it be easy to get your stuff in and out of it, and that you can fit a bottle of wine in it...

I started by removing the fringe, folding it in half and cutting small rectangles from the bottom corners. This was so I could fold under a bottom panel to create a shape with depth, rather than a straight envelope-style bag.

I double and then triple-stitched it for strength, plus a zig-zag stitch along the internal seams which I then sealed with a great all-purpose craft varnish. My bags take quite a lot of wear and I wasn't taking any chances on this one - I wanted it to last!

Time for a cup of mint tea... and then onto pockets! Using some faux-leather from a cheap rucsack that had broken, I cut one large pocket (for kindle!) and two small ones (phone/keys etc) and stitched those into place. Plus handles, also recycled from the broken rucsack and we're nearly there!

I wanted a closure that I could easily undo with one hand to reach in and grab things easily, so I attached a duffel coat toggle with quite a generous loop. And there we have it! One new bag for a grand total of £1.75, plus an afternoon's work. I've been using it for a week and so far I have to say I'm pretty pleased with it. It seems really strong and you can get loads in there while still being able to fish your lip balm out with one hand. Job done!

Sunday, 19 October 2014

All for me, yes?

A baking day a little while ago - vegan chocolate cake, so so very delicious that it would almost make you think 'who needs cows?'*. I used this recipe, which is quite unorthodox, pretty much idiotproof! Although when it first comes out the oven it's very soft and seems like it would be tricky to ice or remove from the tin, once its cooled it's handle-able and so very moist - great texture, and not too sweet. Highly recommended.

*almost, but not quite - I must admit that I eat mainly yoghurt and cheese.

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

This weekend

This weekend (weather permitting!) I'll be at the Clocktower market in Greenwich (London) with my jewellery and bits and bobs. Come and say hi if you're in the area!

I haven't done a craft for such a long time - since I moved to London, really, and this one is a special occasion: I've decided to revamp the shop in a new direction, more towards the prints and notebooks and paper goods that I've always loved making. Maybe I'll return to jewellery one day, but for now I'll be making all current stock and lots of supplies available for (here comes the sell!) bargainous prices on Sunday.

Wish me sunshine!


Sunday, 12 October 2014

Wednesday, 1 October 2014


Some shots of the early morning September sun coming into the flat this last month, surprisingly warm and dry as it was. One weekend I walked past someone trimming the bamboo in their front garden, and took home a couple of stalks, which lasted quite a long time in water! Maybe three weeks. Plus, some new chilli seedlings just getting started (thanks, Wahaca!)

Wednesday, 24 September 2014


Current etsy admirables.

(1) (2) (3) (4)

Sunday, 14 September 2014


 This is a top that I made, oh it seems ages ago now, at the beginning of the summer when it was getting quite hot. It's made from the fabric I bought at the market (even longer ago!). It was a very simple pattern and took just an afternoon. Based on this great post, I used a well-fitting t-shirt (1) as a base pattern, making it a little more boxy and shorter (2). I then made a loop closure at the back of the neck and added simple sleeves (3) - they are my favourite thing about the top, as I usually have real trouble putting sleeves in and make a bit of a balls of it. And there we are! I've worn it a lot this summer, it was really great and airy on hot, sticky days. Next - a dress, on a similar line, perhaps?

Friday, 12 September 2014

How good is this??!!

Floating city by Nina Lindgren, here.

Saturday, 6 September 2014

Exchange project


Here are some images of the little book that I have recently made with Cat. She wrote poems, which I illustrated, and I did drawings, which she wrote poems in response to. Thus Exchange! You can read more about it here, and perhaps purchase a copy here, should you wish...


Wednesday, 3 September 2014

New plants

When I went home a couple of weeks ago, my mum was growing these pretties on the kitchen windowsill. Well, they're mine now! Mwa ha ha ha. (Thanks, mum). I just hope I can manage not to kill them immediately. Any advice?

Sunday, 31 August 2014

Work in progress, after a tidy-up this weekend

Thursday, 28 August 2014

A project

I've been working on a little project with Cat, a friend who's a wonderful poet - we've made a little book, called Exchange, which we will be launching at the Feminist Library on September 13th. If you're London-based we'd be delighted to see you there! Meanwhile, I'll try to take some nice pictures of it, and show you.


Thursday, 21 August 2014

Diana in Dubrovnik

Here are some of my film photos from our holiday. I took my Lomo Diana camera, which I haven't really played with for a good couple of years, and it was quite hard to get back in the swing of it (there were QUITE a lot of duds)! but some of the double-exposures came out sort of okay. I'm just pleased that I didn't ruin ALL of them by setting the shutter off by accident inside my bag...

One or two of these are from a good old-fashioned disposable as well. I've got one more Diana film that hasn't been printed because the photo processors said it was so weird they couldn't even scan the film (!?) so I'm going to try and borrow a negative scanner to do it myself. There's a couple that look alright, we shall see!

Sunday, 17 August 2014


Our week in Dubrovnik was great! I just fell totally in love with the place. We swam, we kayaked, we snorkelled, we wandered around the impossibly beautiful old town and watched the great sunsets. I even saw six shooting stars!

I won't gush too much, just show you all my instagramz...!

I took a good few rolls of film too, can't wait to get them developed and see what's there.