return to mirabelle

The Model's not so keen on modelling for you these days, I'm afraid, and I need to get quicker with the camera and ever more inventive with the styling. Watching the TV is acceptable to her, I'll have you know, but standing and posing at the same time is distinctly not. You'll have to forgive the sameness of the pics, really it was the best I could do on the day!

The two of us had a girlie afternoon at the theatre yesterday watching Matilda the Musical. It was right in the heart of Theatreland and when we came out under the crisp, dark sky the road was illuminated by newly switched on Christmas lights. It looked as magical as the show we had just seen. Why am I telling you this? Firstly, because you must try and see it if you should ever get the chance, you will not regret it for one moment. And secondly, because my girl wore this dress. Matilda's audience was heavy with little girls, all spruced up for the occasion with eager expressions and excited voices and it made for a very special outing with my girl.

I wouldn't say no to a bigger version for myself, I think, especially since lantana is a wonder fabric for the cooler half of the year. Mirabelle has to be one of my favorite Liberty prints, in fact it's already been used in a different colour way here, both snaffled from Fabrics Galore. My Mecca! I used turquoise cotton lawn for the lining and matching vintage buttons down the back and I have a feeling this is going to be one of the Model's favourites too. The dress is a modified version of a pattern previously used in this post and came originally from this brilliant Japanese book.

You're going to have to excuse me again for wrapping this post up in a rather untidy way. Our packers have arrived, cups of tea and choccie biscuits out of the way, and now they are springing into action, emptying the house of all our possessions. These three men have done it all before but I must confess I am resigned to being a bit of a quivering wreck this week. It's a little strange, knowing that our tables and chairs, knives and forks, beds and chests of drawers will be on the water next week and I have my fingers tightly crossed for some calm seas over the next month or so. It's also odd that we probably won't be reunited with the majority of it for several more months whilst it sits patiently in storage. Packing up to three seasons worth of clothing into a handful of suitcases is setting quite a challenge, too. But no matter .. it is an adventure we set out to have and an adventure we shall have! Will tell you more next time, in what will probably be my last post in Blighty ..

Have a restful week, everyone!


brit mitts

What are you up to today I wonder? Now that I've posted this I shall be getting on with sifting through all the 'stuff' we've managed to accumulate over the years. The time has come to get ever more brutal over what we really do need to take on to our next home. Today's task is my sewing room .. help, where do I start? All I know is I wish you were here because there is a lot of 'stuff' that needs to go. Our completion date is becoming ever closer and to be honest, stress levels are beginning to creep up now, despite telling myself to be calm and that everything is going be rosy and wonderful. harmony and rosie has now shut all doors for the next few months, I know not how many. Parties are in organisational stage, light fittings currently sit on the kitchen table, garden pots are cleaned and ready to be scrubbed, charity bags burst at the seams. The list goes on ..

Something that is helping me greatly with adjusting to our move is knitting. Whenever I feel as though I'm sinking in the enormity of it all, I retreat to my room and pick up the needles.

These mitts were a really quick knit. They would have been even quicker had the pattern been correct, though, and nothing gets me more grumpy than that sort of nonsense! They are very pleasing all the same, but I may gift them to someone, my mind has yet to be made up. Anyway, they come courtesy of this stylish book by Erika Knight (and free from here). The book is so beautifully photographed, one of those that I'd be quite happy making any of the projects .. if the patterns were correct! I used Rowan Purelife British Sheep Breeds DK, which is beautiful too. It is soft and squishy and a definite joy to knit with .. smells good as well, always a bonus! More details are on my Ravelry page.

Have a lovely day, everyone. It's turning into a good one here today!


poppies for armistice

The poem, In Flanders Fields, by Lieutenant Colonel John McCrae, was written in 1915 in memory of those soldiers lost during the First World War. It refers to the red poppies that grew over graves of the fallen and was instrumental in the remembrance poppy becoming the most recognised memorial symbol for soldiers who have died in conflict.

Remembering all those who have fallen.

The poppies, which the Model and I are both wearing with pride today, were knitted from the same pattern used for this Winter brooch. I sewed a smattering of vintage black faceted glass beads into the centre. Full details here on Ravelry.


half a term

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all your lovely comments on my jumper. I am wearing it right now and it is helping to keep me warm and snug on this very cold day.

I can't believe that's half a term over already, how the time flies by. We've just had a wonderful break down in Dorset. Did you see the new header at the top of all those photographs? That one was taken on a particularly blustery day, during a long and exhilarating walk at Shell Bay down by the Sandbanks chain ferry. I could never tire of the views along that beach and actually much prefer it out of season, when the place is pretty much all yours for the taking and you can walk on perfect sand for miles.

What did we do? Well, a walk every single day for a start. One day hiking across rolling green hills, another spent tramping through forest land filled with crisp, ochre leaves and the distant call of the tail end of deer rutting season. We savoured the heath land with its large stretches of heather and gorse and fabulous vistas across ever changing seas towards Poole, Bournemouth, the Isle of Wight. And then, of course, there were many hours spent on those beautiful, golden sands.

When I mull over what it is that defines a quintessentially English county, I immediately think of Dorset .. and then perhaps Suffolk. I expect the Brits amongst you may have your own ideas but it's Dorset that I know and love so well. With its thatched cottages and endless patchwork fields, the dramatic coastline and picture postcard villages, it never ever fails to provide the perfect antidote to the fast lane that is London. Arriving down there, often well into the evening, we warm up the house before getting to bed and by the next morning, we are relaxed and ready to step outside, straight into wind-down mode. I feel refreshed from those healthy days and ready for action once again .. only it's a very different type of action now.

We sold our house during the holidays. We'll be leaving London soon, and Dorset too, for that matter, as a new adventure lies in wait for us. I'll tell you a bit more another day .. I just need to take it all in myself first!

Wishing you a happy, sunny week.