Sunday, 7 June 2015

cactus slice

Ever wondered what it looks like inside a cactus? Well, here you go!

This poor little one had an unrescuable fungal infection at its base, so I took the opportunity to appease my curiousity.

Happy Sunday!

Sunday, 31 May 2015


Already a really nice weekend - some time at home, some baking (wholemeal, oat and pine nut loaves) and helping to move some lovely friends into a truly lovely new house.

Operation vintage minimalisation continues: the floral tapestry purse is now available on etsy, and the final image is of a new fern print soon to come in the shop.

Happy weekend, everyone!

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Adventures in Margate shell grotto

A couple of weekends back we had a daytrip to Margate, and a little bird had told me that no trip to Margate is complete without a visit to the shell grotto. And they were right - holy doughballs is it weird! A subterranean shell-coated palace of oddness underneath an extremely ordinary-looking part of town. Theories about its origin abound, and with carbon dating (conveniently) not on the cards for the foreseeable future, no one is quite sure how old it is.

The sheer amount of painstaking work involved makes it quite jaw-dropping, whatever the motive of the creator or creators, and I definitely recommend popping in should you find yourself in the area!

Tuesday, 5 May 2015

Making friends with yeast

For those of you whom I've been boring with my weekend bread photos on instagram, it won't come as news that I've got really into bread-baking lately. In fact, we haven't bought bread for a couple of months now. I'm surprised, because frankly I could never be bothered before! I'm a lazy baker, quick-cake-baker. But I tried this fantastic, easy, reliable recipe and practically IMMEDIATELY resolved to quit my job, move to country and bake bread all day long.*

It's very adaptable, in fact infinitely - I just use the same proportions of dried things to oil and liquid each time. Current favourite is a white loaf full of rosemary, chilli and cracked black pepper: the hint of olive oil with the rosemary gives it an exciting foccacia-like vibe (sure, I'm going to use the word 'vibe' here.) I've even tried replacing the water with the whey left-over when I make yoghurt, but that's another story...

Basically, it's broken down my fear of the yeast, which means many good things, such as a ludicrous number of hot cross buns at Easter. Now I want to try every yeasty thing I can think of! Next stop: Swedish-style cinnamon buns, which just might be one of the top five best things in the whole world, ever.

*It might have been worth the experiment simply for you all to take bets on how long that enthusiasm/lack of boredom would last...

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

"Curiouser and curiouser..."

Just a little note to show off a new thing: these Alice in Wonderland-inpired prints and notebook now available in the shop, here and here. It was so much fun planning out the freestyle hand-drawn type, and also this was the first time I put our (relatively) new gocco printer to use! LOVED IT. Now, if only I could find reasonably-priced gocco ink cleaner to buy, as I've not got much left. Any tips?

Sunday, 19 April 2015

Jane Austen Cookbook

Here is another of my recent projects - a book of six recipes, in both their Regency and modern forms, drawn from the novels of Jane Austen. Each recipe includes the extract of the novel in which it appears, as well as a custom pattern – a modern take on the sprigged muslins and patterned wallpapers of the time.

Each text extract is encapsulated within a smaller, inset set of pages, reflecting the form of the novel and also the way in which food is used as a metaphor by Austen. Throughout her books no detail of food or eating is ever incidental; it is always used pointedly to illustrate character or to carry subtext.

This project owes a debt to Maggie Lane's Jane Austen and Food for explaining many of those (to me) hidden meanings!

Sunday, 12 April 2015


These last few weeks I've been busy working away on my new website, with lots of new personal projects up on it. I think I'll show you a few of my favourites, starting with this cloth book Soft/hard which was inspired by Louise Bourgeois, and I wrote about it here.

I really enjoyed the thoughtful, quite meditative process of the stitching, and am pretty pleased with the results. I used a very stiff double-sided iron-on interfacing to help give form to the pages, which feels nice but if I was to do it again I would use single-sided stuff. The way the canvas clings around the stitches makes them quite lumpy-bumpy looking, which is fine, but you know – live and learn!

You can see more images of the project here.

Sunday, 5 April 2015

Easter weekend - and a discount

Hot cross buns, spring cleaning, more hot cross buns, and giving the poor neglected houseplants some much-needed attention. Happy Easter, if that's your thing, and happy nice long spring weekend otherwise! 

To celebrate, I'm offering 20% off in the shop today and tomorrow, just use coupon code SUPERDUPEREGGS at checkout.

Thursday, 19 March 2015


My wonderful friend Ayla brought me these matchboxes back from Japan. I particularly love the sweet, block-colour simplicity of the vintage ones (top).

That vegetable? fruit? in the bottom one intrigues me - if anyone can let me know what the type says to shed some light on what it might be I'd very interested!

Thursday, 5 March 2015

More patterns!

After Sunday's post, I went to my etsy favourites and these were the top three new items from my favourite shops. Hows that for synergy, eh? Matchy mismatchy. This is pretty much my project in clothes and home furnishings...

1, 2 and 3.

Sunday, 1 March 2015

Work in progress

Some patterns I've been creating for a current project, which will hopefully be finished soon. Here's a clue to the subject: white soup. That's all I'm sayin'...