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Discount coupon

So even though the Spring Sale is over, I think I have yet to meet someone who doesn’t like a bit of a bargain, so maybe this will be of interest to you. Using the coupon code HAPPYCHOICE2020 you can get yourself a 10% discount in my Etsy store on the item (or items) of your choice. Just add in the code at checkout to benefit. As the code suggests, it is valid for 2020, so keep it safe somewhere, just in case!

Go for it >>> HAPPYCHOICE2020

Specs’ keepers renewed

The biggest surprise of the past couple of weeks has been the interest in my specs’ keepers. They are one of those accessories which disappear off the scene for awhile, and then for no apparent reason — return. And that’s what’s happened, and I have found myself stringing beads for hours on end for this seemingly simple creation.

Not that they are difficult to make, but when you no longer have nimble fingers, can be very fiddly and a source of great frustration, plus the occasional cuss, especially when — as happened to me today — all the beads fly off the thread into every corner of the room. Would you believe I have just found a dozen beads caught up in my hair too!

So for those who are looking to keep their goggles to hand, back in my Etsy store, as of today, a couple of new summery colours, and as usual, the possibility to contact me with your own colour choice. Use the personalisation box on the listing page to let me know.

Here’s the link to follow >>>

Coffee pot sewing kit

At long last I have managed to add a couple more of these sewing kits to my Etsy store. This particular kit has been surprisingly popular — partly because of its simplicity that even a beginner can handle quite confidently, but also because of the mix of different elements and methods required to complete it.

Anyway, for those of you looking for a fun project — maybe even as a gift for someone — here’s the link to the Etsy listing…

Coffee cup project >>>

Felt Dala horse

felt dala horse
Many of us have become aware over the past couple of months, either through personal observation or via the media coverage, that the period of lockdown seems to have had a positive effect on our environment. Animals have been leaving their natural habitats to venture into city centres, no longer clogged up with traffic and pollution — and have provided a spectacle that very few of us have ever seen before, and are unlikely to ever see again. We have seen levels of pollution drop (though I fear only temporarily) and for those attuned to these changes, the air will have seemed sweeter and the skies much clearer.

Whether it has something to do with the current coronavirus problem and the changes mentioned above, that I can’t say, but certainly I have been feeling a need to simplify my life and remove some of the ‘sophistication’. I’ve been looking for greater contact with the ‘basics’, doing away with empty ambitions which only take me further from my roots and the people and things I love most.

Sadly, I can’t just retire to the woods and ignore all my connections with modern society — but I can concentrate more time on those creative activities which soothe my soul. Strangely enough, technology features quite importantly in these activities, because it has given me a way to connect with family and friends and to admire and be inspired by the creativity of people around the world.

So using this new world as a starting point, I will be applying myself to newly found handcrafts — and honing my skills in old favourites. Here’s hoping that there will be occasions to share them with new and old friends both virtually, and in person.

Dala horse sewing kitAvailable on Etsy

It’s that time of year

Got a very pleasant surprise when I opened up my mail this evening – I discovered that some kind soul had bought one of my calendars! Just want to say many thanks indeed to whoever you are and wherever you are! I hope the calendar gives you as much pleasure as it did for me to create the images inside it! If you are interested in a calendar for this year, click on the image to be taken to Red Bubble which handles the print-on-demand calendar sales.

The surprise came at the end of a pretty exhausting day – hubby went off on the motorbike for a long ride mid-morning leaving me here to nurse my ribs and try to do some overdue web work. It is pretty uncomfortable to sit in front of the computer right now, but I managed to make some headway and hope to find some time to get in a bit of crafting next week – and maybe some more of that homemade bread.

My Christmas Swapper, Ruth of Nice Day Designs in Ireland tells me that my parcel reached her and that she was pleased with the bits and pieces I sent. Now I can look forward to her ‘donation’ soon which she tells me will soon be sent off to me.

Anyway – ’nuff said …
Night everyone!

Order your calendars now!

Now is the perfect time to get in your orders for our beautiful calendars before the rush sets in and the postal system gets clogged up!

Our calendars are available through Red Bubble and whilst you are looking at our calendars on Red Bubble, you might also like to check out our cards. Click on the calendar image to be taken to Red Bubble.

Day for toting

houses-tote02Well this is only half the story… the bottom half in fact! One of my recent shopping adventures produced this fun fabric in very dark grey with fun stylized houses printed all over it. I knew I wanted to use it for something a little unusual, but just needed to think about it for a short while before true inspiration hit me.

And what emerged? A big, fun and very roomy tote bag with exceptionally long handles to pass across your shoulders leaving all hands free to deal with stroppy kids and/or wayward shopping carts. I even added a rigid fabric covered base (recycled card) so that you can safely carry that ready cooked lasagne over to ma-in-law’s when you want to make a good impression! Then remove the base and voilà…a pure cotton, eco-friendly bag to roll up and tuck into your handbag for those surprise shopping sprees which seem to affect us women so often!

ps. Got to use one of my gorgeous little embroidered “handmade” labels for the first time. Unable to find anything locally, I’m afraid these were sourced in Germany from what is fast becoming one of my favourite ribbon suppliers.

Out stashing

little-drill-300x193Feel almost bad about having had such a good day yesterday – we went off early morning on the bike and only just got back indoors in time for evening meal.

Visited a big regional market where I bought some nice yarn and haberdashery bits – and we picked up some nosh which we ate on a park bench – then we visited an ‘outlet village’ where hubby hoped to pick up some Timberland flip flops, but we were too early seasonally speaking.

Then we went to visit our favourite Guzzi agent, and then found a big hobby/craft/DIY store where I stocked up on a stash of seemingly useless bits which I am certain will inspire me for weeks.

My face is even burning from all the sunshine!

So briefly, what is in the stash …

A couple of big canvases for my paintings
some braid yarn – not quite sure what to do with that, though I do have a couple of ideas buzzing around
a handful of polystyrene eggs
a cork board for pinning when I create decorative knots
some super glue
a little squeedgee (spelling???) roller and tray
some large silver coloured rivets
30 meters of beige cord
10 meters of heavy beige braid
and last, but not least, some super glue

And now I have my thinking cap on!!!

Biker’s crafting break

guzzi-castelfranco-9-12-12Not the most glam photo of hubby that I have, but today we took a break and whizzed off on the bike to a Christmas market — or at least — there was supposed to be one! Don’t believe everything you read on internet! I was foolish enough to look at a site which purports to have all the dates of all the Christmas markets around Europe — but they got this one wrong! Anyway, Castelfranco Veneto is a nice little walled town, so all was not lost.

It was a beautiful, though freezing day (hence the woolly hats as soon as we whipped off the helmets) — and we found a little bar which did us a huge portion of pasta alla carbonara (egg and bacon pasta basically), and an excellent coffee, so we were well satisfied. On our ride homewards we even found a little market which was selling all sorts of wonderful handmade bits and bobs, so apart from getting some lovely ideas, I also purchased a few things to put under the tree, feeling well pleased with myself as part of the profits will go to good causes.

I was very tempted by the log cabin selling hot chocolate, but it would have probably argued with the pasta I had eaten! My bike gear is so close fitting, particularly in the winter months when I have extra layers on, so it’s wise to not overdo the food — shame though!

Craft Market

foto05b-466x500Well it’s just about that time again, and we are getting ourselves ready for the Craft Market to be held in Via Garibaldi here in Venice at the end of this month. We have a fairly good stock of bits and pieces, but were surprised at the last market by just how many earrings went, so need to make a few more of those. The odd thing is that on the previous occasion, the felt items seemed to be more popular. These markets are so infrequent (only 6 a year) that it is very difficult to build up an accurate picture of what goes or not. The passers-by vary so much because of the different kind of events going on in the city, so as this market it linked in with the Venice Marathon, who knows what the ‘average’ customer might be like!

Anyway, if you happen to be in town, do pop by to find us even if just to say hello! If you do decide to make a purchase, you can be sure of a discount  just by telling us the name and address of this web site!

You will find the event listed in the events’ calendar on this site, but just to remind you, here are the details:

‘Mercatino di Via Garibaldi’, Via Giuseppe Garibaldi, Venice on Sunday 28th October, from about 10.00 through until 20.00, weather permitting.

Made by Hand

When you buy something from an artist, you are buying more than an object. You are buying hundreds of hours of failures and experiments. You are buying days, weeks and months of frustration and moments of pure joy. You are not only buying a thing, but a piece of heart, a part of the soul, a moment in the life of someone.

by Giacomo Cinque
'La Sartoria Antica'
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