Friday, 25 September 2015

New to Me in September

Welcome to another New to Me Link Party!

The Link Party where we celebrate the trying of something new, whether it was ultimately successful or not :)

New to Me's are fairly thin on the ground this month, unless I count in new wines or restaurants tried on our holiday in France, where there were lots!

My only crafty New to Me was the completion of the mount for my first attempt at counted canvaswork.

The fabric mount was backed with double-sided fusible web and then ironed to the mount board. If I hadn't seen it done at the EG workshop, I would definitely have been a bit sceptical about the process, but it does work :)

I am really pleased with how it looks and would definitely like to have another go at this. Next time though I will increase the size of the mount board slightly, as the current size 7.5"/19cm square is just that bit too small for commercially available frames, so I will need to pay a visit to the local framer to have it framed eventually.

My second New to Me is crafty, but not by me!

On our recent trip to N.Ireland I stumbled across a poster for a textile art exhibition in the Tourist Information Office in Ballycastle. Well, I couldn't pass up the opportunity to see that, now could I??

The textile artist exhibiting was Eibhlin McCarry who does the most beautiful work with scraps of fabric and felt embellished with machine and hand embroidery.

These embellished felt pieces representing the Nine Green Glens of Antrim were amazing, but my favourite piece was this one entitled Sea, Sand and Shingle.

Indeed, I liked it so much that I did something I have never done before and rang up Eibhlin on the spot and arranged to buy it! Of course as part of the exhibition it had to stay in-situ until the close, so it is only now that I actually have the picture in my hands. A wonderful and lasting memory of a great holiday.

So that's my New to Me's for this month, now it is your turn to link up and share your successes or failures as we celebrate the trying of something new.

As ever please help to spread the word by linking back to this post in your post and/or adding the blog button to your sidebar.

Check out the other links too and, maybe, leave an encouraging comment along the way. The emphasis of this link party is to celebrate the trying of something new, whether it works out exactly as planned or not, so a little encouragement here and there would not go amiss! 

The link will remain open until 23.59GMT on September 30th, so you have some time to try something new and link up and join the party :) If your New to Me involves a Christmas or Holiday project then don't forget to link up to this month's Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party too, you could just win a Skinny Dips bundle of fabric from Plush Addict for your efforts :)

You will find the Ho, Ho, Ho and On We Sew Link Party this month at Practically Pippy

Looking forward to seeing what you have been up to this month!

Friday, 18 September 2015

Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew in the sun

Welcome to another nudge to kickstart your Christmas and Holiday sewing, otherwise known as the Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew link party!

This month your hostess with the mostest is Karen, who blogs over at Practically Pippy. Karen is a wonderful artist full of great ideas for home decoration that are practical as well as fun, so be sure to check out her blog I know that you will be inspired :) You are going to love Karen's brilliant Mug Rug Gift Card holder tutorial, they are another perfect combination of practical and fun!

Naturally, a Ho, Ho, Ho and on We Sew Link Party means a giveaway too, and this month's giveaway is one lucky linker's choice of a Skinny Dips bundle from the wonderful selection at Plush Addict

 Plush Addict Logo
If you haven't already come across the Skinny Dips bundle, they are well worth checking out, I used one of the bundles to create individual linings for these bridesmaid bags I made for my daughter-in-law last year.

 They were a great way to get a themed bundle of fabrics without having to go to the expense of buying fat quarters.

The lucky winner of last month's Village Haberdashery gift voucher was Benta who linked up her zippy pouches.

Christmas crafting has taken a bit of a back seat this month as I have been enjoying the sunshine in SW France too much to think of sitting at a sewing machine. However, I did manage to finish the counted canvaswork piece that I started a couple of months ago and it is destined to be a gift for my mum when I can find a frame that fits!

The fabric is attached to the mountboard with iron-on interfacing, which was a first for me and definitely something I would like to have a go at again.

If you have made any Christmas or Holiday gifts or Home Decorations this month head on over to Practically Pippy to link them up and you might be the lucky winner of that Skinny Dip Bundle, the Christmas Fabric bundle would be a great addition to your stash :)
The Link Party will remain open until the end of the month so you have plenty of time to get crafting!

As ever, these lovely sponsors deserve a big thank you for their generous support of the link party.

Crafty Trimmings

Logo Sew Hot

Plush Addict Logo

Quilting Fabric at the Fat Quarter Shop

Linking up to

Thursday, 27 August 2015

Walking in the footsteps of Giants

A while ago friends invited us to visit them at their holiday home in Donegal, so we decided to use the opportunity to see a part of the world that we had only briefly visited before. As regular readers know we are big Game of Thrones fans in this house, so as this trip would give us the chance to see some of the locations used in GoT it was too good an opportunity to pass up.

We flew to Belfast International Airport and headed over to the coast at Larne to start our whistle stop tour. Sadly we were too late to visit the walled gardens of Glenarm Castle so had to make do with a quick peep and a promise to ourselves to return.

Following the Causeway Coast and Glens route we ended up in Ballycastle, which gave us our first GoT connection as it is the birthplace of the actor Conleth Hill, who plays Varys in Game of Thrones.

This beautiful statue on the harbour front represents the Irish legend of the Children of Lir, who were turned into swans by their stepmother and sentenced to spend 900 years living in the loughs of Ireland.

Clearly the same artist was behind this statue at the harbour celebrating the fishing that brought prosperity to the town.

Fishing was the reason for this rather scary rope bridge at Carrick-a-Rede, as it was used by salmon fisherman to access the best places to catch the migrating salmon who passed by. No salmon to be seen nowadays, just the shoals of tourists weaving their way to and from the coach park!
It was daunting enough walking across the bridge with both hands free, I cannot image trying the same trip with one hand clutching a large bundle of salmon, can you?

If these nesting seagulls are anything to go by though, there are still plenty of fish in the sea.

Our next GoT connection was the tiny harbour of Ballintoy, which serves as the Iron Islands harbour for Theon Greyjoy's return.

With scenery like this on the doorstep it is not difficult to reimagine it as Iron Islands.

All that walking worked up an appetite, so we stopped for lunch at the Red Door Tea Room in Ballintoy, where if you ever find yourself I recommend the seafood chowder, it was delicious :)

Of course, we couldn't visit this part of the world without making our way to the main attraction - the Giant's Causeway, where legend has it that the Irish giant, Finn McCool, decided to confront the Scottish Giant, Benandonner, and throws rocks into the sea to create a path across to Scotland. When Finn arrives in Scotland though, he discovers that Benandonner is a bit bigger than he thought, so decides to beat a hasty retreat. Naturally the Scot in me relishes that part of the tale :) Benandonner was, however, deprived of his revenge by Finn's wife who disguised Finn as a baby, upon sight of which, Benandonner decided that if the babies were that size he definitely didn't want to meet the father :)

Even with the inevitable hordes of tourists clambering all over it, the Giant's Causeway is an amazing sight.

There is another unusual sight in this rock formation next to the Causeway, but I will leave you to guess what it is :)

Linking up to

Live A Colorful Life

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