Wednesday, 29 August 2012

Some lovely gifts from Skye

Above the Isle of Skye Baking Company in Portree is a wonderful gallery called Skyeworks, lots of art but also craft supplies to buy and workshops / courses available in a lovely sewing area, it was fab.

I got this lovely wool, fabric and buttons.

Also picked up these rather groovy postcards which I thought would like nice together in a frame.

Next food, Bob enjoyed some local produce! It's the legendary Skye Fudge made by Carole and to a secret family recipe, yum!

There's an interesting kitchen shop called Rona at Home in Portree and they sell these  herbs & comestibles by Uncle Roy, available online too. Lots of traditional concoctions.

Lovely goodies from Skye Batiks, a hand loomed messenger bag and a celtic batik scarf.

Our holiday was over far too quickly.
Bob finished his week in Skye visiting friends at The White Heather hotel, a fab place if you need quality, friendly B&B. Here he got to meet Hamish & Heather Haggis!

More views of Skye

As you probably would guess my little friend Bob snook into my suitcase, he's never been to Scotland before so he was very excited and wore his kilt especially for the trip!
Below he is at Torrin.

On this day the weather was good so we took the scenic drive around Tarskavaig and down to the beach.

The purple heather was quite stunning. 
I got to fly my kite on the beach at Tarskavaig Bay.

A little further round this bay are some ancient woodlands, with the Rowan or mountain ash in full berries.

I tried to capture more purple heather in the shot below as we whizzed by in the car, it was a mountain I've seen many times before but never at this time of the year with heather.

Another day, and I took Bob to Portree, here he is looking across the harbour.

I then took him to meet friends in my favourite shop, Skye Batiks.

Unfortunately the picture below is the only one I got in the shop and is blurry but I wanted to give you a feel of how groovy the stuff is in there.

I delivered one of my textile designs to see if they liked it and it went down well and may feature in their 2013 clothing range, now there's a good excuse to go back next year and see if there's anything to buy with my design on! It is a re-working of an honesty pod design I did on my college textile course.

We finished our day in Portree at the Isle of Skye Baking Company for a delicious Earl Grey and bun in their eco cafe.

Monday, 27 August 2012

A week on Skye

A fortnight ago I had no plans for a holiday but 11 days ago an opportunity presented itself to grab a last minute booking for a week on the Isle of Skye. Within 2 days of booking & paying we were packed and off, quite amazing for me. I'm not one who can commit to planning things way in advance, I'm usually last minute, but I do like a few more days to pack clothes and gather some craft things together to keep me busy. 
It was too good a chance to miss as I've not been to Skye for almost 3 years and with there being a reduced fee on the cottage I grabbed it whilst I could!

It's a long drive from here to Skye, about 10 hours and that's only with one 15 min toilet stop on the motorway, I usually take a comprehensive car picnic to cut down on stoppage time & overpriced motorway snacks. When you think about how far it is, to put it into perspective you could get to the US quicker.

Once above Glasgow & Loch Lomond you really feel like you are making progress. Here's a moody shot driving through the mountains of Glencoe.

Onwards and upwards to Fort William, a quick refuel and you're down to the last couple of hours traveling as you hit the road to the Isles.
And here we are, whizzing across the Skye Bridge in the glorious sunshine.

The holiday cottage was towards the southern tip of Skye, this area is called Sleat and known as the Garden of Skye, very lush and coastal whereas further north is rugged, mountainous and with steep cliffs. I've mainly stayed in the north west before so this was a new experience.
The cottage was only small but it had amazing views out to sea from most of the windows.
Below is the view from the lounge and you may see a ferry coming across in the centre of the shot, this is the Skye ferry which goes back and forth to Mallaig on the mainland about half a dozen times a day.

The view below is from the front of the cottage.

Below is an evening shot, you can see why they call it The Misty Isle as the clouds roll in.

I have so enjoyed the luxury of having coastal views all week, you really feel at one with nature when you can see weather patterns moving across the mountains and over the sea. The week started sunny but it mostly got wetter which in some ways was a shame as Skye has had it's best summer for years and we've had it rubbish down here yet the minute I go north I seem to have taken the rain with me! But it changes so quick up there being an island & the wet did not damp my spirits.

It was about a 10 minute walk from the cottage down to the pier at Armadale where the ferry departs and these are some lovely sunny shots there on the first day.

I have a few more photos of places I visited and things I bought which I will put in another post.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

Spoonflower camping fabric result

I've been away for a week and so I've just turned the mac on to catch up and I was quite pleased with the camping fabric result.

I think this is my second best Spoonflower result to date and I came 21st out of about 160 entries with a very healthy 329 people voting for mine so thank you to anyone out there in internet land who gave me your vote, it really made my day.

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Camping fabric of many colours!

I finished my camping fabric the other day, although once I'd done the initial one with a cream background...

I started to try different coloured backgrounds and then it became difficult knowing which one I preferred!

There were even more options but anyway I had to choose one to enter in next weeks Spoonflower contest so I applied some logic and chose a green one which can be grass green the caravans are pitched on!
Here is my entry.

Monday, 13 August 2012

Artwork for a new camping fabric design

The last couple of days I've been working on some camping illustrations for my fabric design entry into this weeks Spoonflower contest. The theme as we near the end of summer is of course camping. 

I have gone down the route of retro caravans and tents and in digital collage style I have jazzed up my drawings with vintage and retro fabric.

Here is the work in progress, I'm currently preparing the artwork at fat quarter size and trying to get the pattern to repeat. Finished designs coming soon.

Friday, 10 August 2012

Crochet, Fabric & Gifts

I'm lumping a few things together here which have happened recently.
Firstly, I battled with some fine crochet silk and have just finished myself a choker, embellished with some tiny glass beads.

After a 5 week wait since dispatch, I finally received the printed fabric swatches of my latest designs which are now for sale in the Spoonflower Marketplace.

I tried having my designs printed on different fabrics and the 2 pictures above show how the vintage collage fabrics print on silk for a nice retro feel.

The picture above shows cotton satteen samples.

The above are on mixed weight cottons.

Moving onto gifts and I've done rather well in recent weeks picking up this little lot when my parents went on their travels to Europe which usually ends with a visit to my sister in Belgium to stock up on fruit beers & chocolate, my favourites!
It goes without saying, below are from Germany & Black Forest, can you see the cuckoo popping out on the second pic.

Next, fruit beer, fruit wine & chocolate.

Have a good weekend everyone!