Monday, June 22, 2009

Flea Market Finds

Yesterday was a great Father's Day for me, I got to leave the kids with their Father and as I have no contact with my own Father I was not expected to visit him. So, I popped to Shepton Mallet with Mum to visit the flea market!

It was a lovely sunny day when I left home and for the first part of the morning it remained that way so Mum and I strolled (rather fast) round the outside stalls. I have my fabric blinkers on when I first go around and sometimes come back for another look at other bits and bobs.
In the afternoon it started to rain so we went indoors.

It was a huge market this time and we were still wandering around at 2.30pm as the stallholders were packing away so fast strolling is the order of the day! There were lots of familiar faces both behind and in front of the stalls and I got to meet a few bloggers, some for the first time, which was lovely. I saw Niki there who had already been back to her car once to load up and hadn't finished shopping so I am sure she will have some goodies to share with us on her blog. I forgot to take many photos as I get overexcited at these markets and forget that I have a camera! I did remember when I got to Lizzie's stall though so here some pictures of her and I together and her stall with those famous green shelves.

I bought some wonderful textiles and loads of them, some beautiful bits from Sue's stall. I spent a small fortune overall but I love everything that I bought and they will all go on the website eventually. Here are some pictures of them.

Quilt pieces

Old French Florals and Ticking

Horrockses Brushed Cottons

Vintage Kid's Fabrics

Fab Fifties Fabrics

Fifties Abstracts

Fifties Roses

More Fab Fifties

1960's Fabrics

Faded Florals and Paisleys

Gorgeous Floral Quilts

Lovely old Wooden Bobbins from Courtaulds

More Union Jacks than you can shake a stick at!

2 Pairs of Brentleighware Ballet Shoes (I already have a red pair)

And last but not least, see that lovely old French cot/daybed? It came home with me!

It currently resides in Lizzy's bedroom and will be her little sofa but will probably be borrowed from time to time as a prop for my stalls. I would have preferred a vintage quilt on it but knowing how rough my two little ones are on the furniture I have opted for a new polka dot one which is more durable.

All in all well worth the 2 hour drive I would say. I wish it were a little nearer to me as I always have a big headache by the time I get home due to the long drive. There is always a great atmosphere and lots of colourful characters. If you haven't been yet do try and visit, it's great fun!

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Saturday, June 20, 2009


I love my front door at this time of year. Roses cascade down each side, honeysuckle scent hits me as I come out and this year we have foxgloves. We haven't planted them and goodness knows where they have come from but they are so beautiful.

(The children have been given strict instructions to look and not touch, which seems to have worked as Lizzy tells me, 'You mustn't touch the digitalis or you will die'!)

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Friday, June 12, 2009

Janet Bolton at Cowslip

Last weekend I took my annual trip to Cowslip for the Janet Bolton naive applique course. I have attended this course every year for the past 5 years. It has become more than just a sewing course as I meet up with now dear friends who live far away. Pennie is in Sussex and Janet is in Oxford. We met on the course and it is so lovely when we meet up again. It's like no time has passed at all, we just take up where we left off. We sew and chat and catch up with each other's lives. It is always a treat to be at Cowslip as it is the loveliest place on earth to be. Some of you may have seen Jo, who runs Cowslip on the Hand Made Home programme with Kirsty Allsop. She was the lovely lady who made the quilt.

I have sometimes struggled with my pieces over the years and have come away with unfinished pieces, vowing to get them finished before the next course. This has not always happened and so I went along with 3 unfinished pieces and an idea for my next piece. I put my unfinished pieces to one side and my new piece just flowed. I knew what I wanted to do and for once I did not struggle with it, it was a joy. I also finished 2 other pieces from previous years which means I now have 4 finished pieces and one to finish.

Let me show you what I have made so far.

(Click on photos to enlarge)

2004 - I made a piece featuring my two children, Jazz and Alfie who were 14 and 4 at the time. I made them on a beach flying kites, Jazz has lost hers. This piece is framed and hangs in our bathroom.

2006 - By this time I had had another baby, Lizzy and so I made a picture of her, on the beach with me. We have spotted Jazz's kite! This piece has been unfinished until now and is ready for framing.

2007 - I decided to unite my children on the beach. This was not a good year for me, I had things going on in my life that were making me unhappy and to this day this piece remains unfinished. It was twice the size but once I cut it down I could see how it could work. I will finish it.

2008 - I wanted to try making my three bubbas on the beach again and this time it worked. I didn't get to finish it until a few days before I went to Cowslip.

For those of you that know this area they are standing on Instow beach with Appledore across the estuary.

2009 - The final piece was inspired by Albert Lamorisse's film from 1954 called The Red Balloon or Le Balon Rouge. I was asked to source some fabrics for the Royal Opera House's production of The Red Balloon and as research I watched this charming film again. I hadn't seen it in years. If you want to see it, it's not long, watch it on YouTube.

So my final piece features my three chasing the red balloon.

I hadn't realised until now that I always place Jazz first, Lizzy in the middle and Alfie leading. I wonder why?

These pictures are definitely a series and I have used some of the same fabrics in each one to link them. They tell a story and document my children's lives over the past 5 years.

Here's the lovely Janet holding my piece. She really is the most wonderful and inspiring person. I adore her. I have already signed up for next year!

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