Many thanks (I think) to Kate Chiconi for nominating me to take part in this blog hop… aimed at introducing you to new blogs written by lovely creative people. Kate’s blog Tall Tales from Chiconia allows me to drool over wonderful (mainly quilted) creations that I would never make myself (having a love-hate relationship with my sewing machine).
Whilst I’m at it, I should also acknowledge that two other people asked me to participate in this blog hop – Jenny of Simply Hooked asked me a few weeks ago and her request somehow disappeared in a flurry of other things so that, by the time I realised I needed to reply, it was too late (sorry Jenny); and Wendy at Quarter Acre Lifestyle, who was pipped to the post because she asked me about two days after Kate! Anyway, go visit their sites too!!
The way this works is that there are a few questions to answer and then I point you in the direction of another couple of lovely creative blogs to check out, so here goes…
What am I working on?
It’s probably easiest to show you…
Still making hexipuffs for my beekeeper’s quilt
Always the Masterpiece. but nearly finished now
Long-term project this one, a tapestry
Thick Jacob’s wool hoodie… on hold until the temperature drops
Building up stock for my etsy shop
There’s lots of food and garden creativity too, which is on-going…
Apple scrap vinegar
Cooked tomatoes for passata
Lactose-free raspberry and white chocolate ice cream: a taste of summer
Pumpkin seeds ready for drying
Settling down with a good book
Beans and seeds for drying
Picked from a friend’s tree
Glamorgan sausages with garlic potatoes and lettuce
Just out of the oven
Lettuces in a patio planter
Repurposed rotary dryer
Currently, I am getting VERY creative with these:
The weight is in kilos not pounds
And, at Denmark Farm, a whole group of us are getting creative to raise funds to support the work of the charity and keep the nature reserve open:
The squares have been made by lots of people, but Lindsey has edged and stitched all of them together
Sue and Denise start stitching
Lovely colours and techniques
Crafting and chatting
Two blankets taking shape
Hexagons by Katy, edging by me, sewn together by Denise and Sue
How does my work differ from that of others?
Well, apparently there are only a limited number of crafters who make mushrooms, bacteria, molluscs and the like! In addition, I do like to support local businesses (yarn shops and producers) and I try to buy British wool as much as possible. I also like to be as green as I can, so reusing, recycling and selecting ‘green’ yarn is important to me. I have spent quite a bit of time looking into the ethics of knitting yarns and continue to look for good options, although I know that I don’t always succeed.
In my life in general I try to be thoughtful about the resources I use and that’s reflected in my gardening – I like food metres rather than food miles whenever possible and I try to use the things I have creatively – hence a gate from a pallet, growing plants up an old rotary drier, planting seeds in old toilet roll middles etc. I’m certainly not alone in this sort of approach, but I do talk and write about it more than most people!
Why do I create what I do?
Because I’d go bonkers if I didn’t… I know some of you think I’m bonkers already, so just imagine how much worse I would be if I didn’t make all this stuff! Lots of folks I know tell me of the value of mediation (and medication), but frankly creating things is what works for me if I want relaxation or thinking time. What I think of as classic relaxation always feels like this to me:
Now, isn’t a spot of crochet much better than that?
Oh, and hand-knitted socks last so much longer and are so much more fun than bought ones!
And, I want to save the planet!
How does my creative process work?
I start doing about a million different things and then just pick up what I feel like when the mood takes me. This is why I’m not very keen on undertaking commissions… I just never want to do something that I have to do! It all works out in the end for me.
In the garden I do what needs doing plus whatever I feel like… as I said, I don’t like to feel obliged to do anything.
And now for my recommendations… two very different blogs, but both inspiring and both written by good friends of mine.
First is Katy the Night Owl’s blog about her crochet creations. Katy and I met through blogging and then discovered that we live about 500m away from each other. However, because Katy is mostly house-bound we would never have met without the technology. She’s currently helping me to make a dent in the great courgette mountain!
Second is Karen’s beautiful and poignant blog Sweet Baby Veg… full of amazing recipes and lovely pictures of Karen’s garden… I can only dream of a garden oasis as beautiful as the one she has created.
Katy and Karen will be posting their blog hop contributions next Monday, 4 August.