Thursday, 3 December 2009

Feeling Christmassy

The 1st December was approaching and, with a surge akin to pregnancy hormones, my desire for all things Christmas was insatiable. I had so many plans of what I still wanted to make to take to the craft fair on Saturday and what I wanted to make as stock for my shop, but suddenly these were all pushed to one side as my pinking shears were wielded in order to make triangles of Christmassy bunting, and my rotary cutter was awarded a new blade so that it might help me cut through hundreds of layers of fabric to produce enough strips to crowd into some wreaths.

The wreaths I have wanted to make for well over a year now, having spotted them in quite a few places. They are surprisingly fabric-hungry things to make and it pained me a little to be using up so much of my red-coloured stash, but I am really trying to become less of a hoarder and to take comfort from the idea that even if one fabric is discontinued, something just as lovely might be printed to replace it. That didn't stop me checking that one or two were still available somewhere online before cutting into them to make the second wreath though...it's so hard to be good!

Anyway, I will be taking these Christmassy goodies to the fair, but I will be quite happy if they don't sell, as we don't seem to have quite enough decorations and the gasps of the littlest Teacakes when they walked in one morning to find that I had temporarily hung bunting on the walls were so gratifying that I can see I will be making some more anyway. Zebra-girl is also requesting that I make some year-round bunting for her bedroom.

I have, however, also managed to sandwich in making more framed fabric pictures, a couple of hair accessories boards, a batch of teabag holders. It's amazing what you can do when you have a deadline for making things...however, like Eeyore, I am feeling apprehensive about the fair. The one that I did one rain-soaked evening last December in a tiny country village was fairly dire and so with this as my only past-experience I feel convinced that fairs (for me, at least) may well be doomed ventures. However, what was unexpectedly lovely about last year was that I then had the most enormous amount of stock for my shop...something which I rarely find the time to make...so I'm focusing on that as a possible good outcome. But even more so, a day with my lovely girls and the chance to perhaps meet Fitz and Helen & Joanne's husbands, whom I've heard so much about. Mr Teacakes asked me if I wouldn't just be happier meeting up with them for cake and not bothering about the craft fair aspect in future...I'll report back to you on that post-fair. Anyway, if you happen to be in Chelsea on Saturday, then it would be so lovely to meet you. We will be in the smaller ante room, away from the main hall (possibly due to the expectation of bad behaviour, but I like to think the stalls were given out on a lucky dip basis), but in closer proximity to the cake room which is apparently due to be stocked by the founders of Patisserie Valerie. Not such a bad compromise after all. Today has been spent on last minute prepartions...like making price cards and swing tags.

Before I go, I wanted to tell those of you that aren't on their mailing list that Jo & Fran of UK-based Saints & Pinners are offering a scrumptious 20% off all fabric. I am trying so hard to exercise some self-restraint due to running out of storage space (we'll see how well I do as the offer is good until 20th December...so much time for me still to crack!), but must implore those of you that have a fabric-shaped hole in a cupboard or drawer to snaffle up the lovelies. Just type in SP2 at the checkout for discounty goodness. Has anyone else noticed quite how many wonderful online fabric shops are emerging in the UK in the last few months? I keep a long, ever-growing list of them in my email drafts (currently standing at 35!)...must share that at some point too.

Wishing you a lovely weekend,
Florence x

ps. I did ask Jo & Fran if it was okay for me to spread their offer in this way, and they were more than happy, so please don't let stolen discount code worries plague you if you're buying. x
pps. Do any other blogger users know what might be the problem with photo quality at the moment - I know that my photos are fine because they're crisp in Flickr...but blogger seems to be compressing them in an odd way so that they look fuzzy and dull...any ideas as to what I or blogger might be up to would be so appreciated. x

11 comments:

  1. Hmmm... that is weird. I use Live Journal to compose my posts. It is SO much easier to manipulate photos that doing it directly in Blogger. You need to download the free program, but it si super-simple to use and has none of the headaches that Blogger presents. You can also do other things with your photos, like drop shadows, curved edges,etc.

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  2. good luck all of you for the fair ... you are sure to do well as Chelsea is in prime location... i love the wreath and i am jealous that you will be eating patisseries a la Valerie.
    have fun
    x

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  3. Hello Florence
    I really love your wreath - I was strolling along today thinking about such things and the one in my head was so similar! Don't think it will materialise this year though. I have just seen your rather wonderful little matryoshka needle case on the on-line magazine www.ukhandmade. It is so gorgeous and I must have one! Definitely a project small enough to handle but only after I've followed your pouch tutorial - hopefully this weekend (the best and most perfectly finished on the web as far as I can see!). If mine looks as nice as yours does, I will be making quite a few. I have to tell you also that your little cat Honey is just so very pretty - a honey in fact.

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  4. Ooops - anonymous in this case is Siobhan

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  5. It's 5.30 on Saturday morning and I too am waiting in anticipation to participate in a fair, our BrisStyle Christmas Market here in Brisbane. I couldn't sew another stitch if you offered me all the wonders of the world - I guess you know that feeling. Best of luck with your Chelsea Fair - may we both have the most wonderful days, you in cold, Christmassy England and me in warm (for that read HOT) Australia.

    P.S. Your wreaths are simply beautiful.

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  6. Gorgeous wreath! Please please please share your list of fabric websites from the UK, I tend to end up paying quite a lot in delivery from the US and Netherlands!

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  7. Yes, please do share your links to online fabric shops! I still struggle to find the fabrics that I see advertised on US sites here in the UK and would love to get my hands on the names of your 35 online fabric shops in a quest to find my ideal fabrics.

    Your pictures look fine to me - I'm viewing with Mac Safari; could it be an Internet Explorer thing?

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  8. Hope the fair went well! I just do my photos in IPhoto, then I can choose what quality to export them - Blogger is a bit temperamental, though. They look fine on my computer, anyway.

    Pomona x

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  9. Thanks so much for that, Vanessa, I will look into it, not least because I like the idea of curvy edges!

    Thank you so much for all the support and well wishes for the fair.

    Hot Fudge - Twice now you have made my day. After waking in the early hours and eventually turning my laptop on at 5am unable to go back to sleep it was so lovely to find your lovely comment and know that someone on the other side of the world was having similar pre-fair sleeplessness. I've tried to commment on your blog today, but it doesn't seem to want me to, but your own stall looked utterly wonderful (as did those cakes!) and I'm so pleased that you had a lovely day. x

    Ginny, there's only one thing better than eating patesseries a la valerie and that's eating FREE patesseries a la valerie...Joanne went in there at the end of the day and they gave her the very last piece of carrot cake as they wanted to clear up...thankfully she decided to share it - it was sublime!

    Rosy & Isobel - as soon as I get a spare evening I will type up my list of links...hopefully very soon. Please do hassle me if I don't do it in the next week or so...as it will be down to forgetfulness rather than lack of will!

    Thank you so much taking the time to comment. x

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  10. Hello Florence,

    I just wanted to say that I really enjoy your blog and your amazing creations!
    I also use blogger and hated the quality of the photos after I uploaded them, so now I upload them first into Photobucket (a free web based photo storage place) and then link them to the blog. I found the tutorial to do this at

    http://feteetfleur.blogspot.com/2009/02/photobucket-instructions.html

    but I dont bother resizing my photos, I just use them as is and they seem fine.

    Arabella

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  11. Thank you so much for the link, Chickie Chirps.

    You can now find my list of UK online fabric shops here: http://flossieteacakes.blogspot.com/2009/12/my-lovely-list-of-uk-online-fabric.html - I hope you enjoy. x

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x