Sunday, 26 February 2012

Weekly round-up and a giveaway winner

My first ever giveaway has now closed.  Rather than using the random number generator I went for the old-fashioned approach:

Names were all written down and put into my pretty vintage glass dish.   I did a little drum roll (in my head) and the winner is....

It's Ann from Vintage At The Corner House.  Well done Ann - if you let me have your address I'll pop the parcel in the post!  I said that I would pop in a few surprise treats and I already know what I'm going to include.  Such fun. :-)


I've done a bit of shopping this week and was thrilled to find these Ruby & Ed slippers in the sale.  £12.50 instead of £35.  A bargain and I'm keeping these for holidays and overnight stays.  A bit of posh on hols is always good.

There has also been lots of snuggling under the eiderdown.  This little beauty was a purchase from Peony & Sage just after Christmas. 
I'd been wanting a nice eiderdown but could never find a vintage one that I felt comfortable with.  I love the fabrics at Peony & Sage and I am so glad I bought this.  It wasn't cheap (which at least encouraged me to sell some clutter on ebay) but it was worth every penny.  It is thick, heavy and warm, the fabric is beautiful and it is the perfect size to drag around the house.  We regularly snuggle under it on the sofa to watch TV and when I sit on the bed to crochet, watch iPlayer or read I pull it up over myself.  Lovely - makes me feel so relaxed and cosy.
I've been wanting to show you these cute little charms for a while.  They make fab crochet stitch markers.  I do have a few stitch markers but they are quite ordinary - this little shoe is currently saving my place on the giant granny square (I have so nearly finished it but my attentions have been focused on my cross-stitch cushion kit).  

Finally,  I've set myself a challenge to indulge my creative side.  I work full-time as a PA in the finance industry and, as you can imagine, rarely have the opportunity to be creative.  

The challenge is to take more photographs.  I had a new camera for Christmas, which I love, but bought a fancy new lens for it and the automatic settings no longer cut the mustard.  I am not getting the shots I am after - the bokeh effect kicks in too often and parts of the image are blurred when I don't want them to be.  It is frustrating me.  Practice (and lessons, I think) will be the way forward.

The biggest obstacle I face is my confidence (always the way with me).  I am self-conscious taking photographs in public.  There are so many snaps I'd like to take and I would love to have my proper camera with me all of the time, just in case, but I feel foolish taking photos of what other people consider to be ordinary things.  I ate out with my family last weekend for my grandma's birthday and my family laughed at me for taking photos.  It was an absolutely stunning building and there were so many gorgeous things I wanted to capture.  I took two photographs of a couple of [beautiful] lamps and gave up.  When I got home I was disappointed in myself.  So I'm going to take one photo, at least,  a day.  I hope it will break down any mental blocks I have about photographing in public.  Lots of people do it and I'm jumping on the bandwagon.

I've started small, just using my iphone, but I'll work up to taking my DSLR out and about with me.  I'm saving up for a gorgeous Kelly Moore camera bag as we speak.

Have a great week!  And thanks, as always, for stopping by.



PS Big news - I'm not dreading Monday so much!  Yay!  I have joined a knit and natter group which gets together every other Monday - it's my first night tomorrow.  So excited!  Hope I get on OK. :-)  Cheering my Monday right up.


  1. Taking photos is all about practice, something I need more of or a better camera? Anyway don't be scared to take photos in public, the more you do the easier it becomes!
    By the way love love love the quilt, just had a sneaky peek over at Peony and Sage as it would look gorgeous on my bed but they only do the quilt as a single size boohoo!
    Big Hugs

  2. Keep at it with the photography, especially the taking photos in public side of things, it does becomes easier and a photo a day is the ideal challenge, there are lots of groups to join either here or on Facebook which are open to everyone. Postcards from the PP is one in blogland and a kitty called betty on Facebook are just two. Have fun can't wait to see your photos. X

  3. Slippers and eiderdown are giving my green eyes!! The kniot and natter groups sounds absolutely lovely. I hope you enjoy it.

  4. I love peony and sage but they are expensive! I have to admit the eiderdown looks so cosy : )


  5. I photograph everything, I sometimes worry that I am too busy looking at the world through a lens to properly stop and look, but it heightens your visual awareness. Go for it. lots of us are doing it :D

    By the way, re. the unwanted bokeh, there are some fabulous depth of field tutorials on the interweb that will help you control that and get the look you want ... just google it.

  6. Well done to Annie...what a lucky lady!
    Taking photo's in public does take a little bravery, i struggle too and envy those people who spend ages getting the composition etc just right and just don't care. I am in and out in a flash (litterally!)
    good luck :o)
    GORGEOUS slippers and quilt
    have fun at knit and natter
    love jooles x

  7. Ooooh I look forward to your posts! Blooming well love that eiderdown!! It's gorgeous and I've admired it when you've posted pics of it before. Now I can go over to their website to swoon and lust! I must get our crap on eBay but am lacking the motivation to do it *sigh* Well done to Annie! I know what you mean about taking photos but it definitely gets better! I'm always taking pics with my iPhone makes me laugh when it embarrasses the girls...they were mortified when I was taking pics of the Ikea flags during half term! Lol it cracked me up. I like being different :) embrace it lovely and maybe later this year we'll both be out with our DSLR's not giving a hoot!

    Enjoy your knit & natter....jealous, much, me?!

    Jo x x x

  8. Ooooh knit club. Lovely!

    This would have been a longer comment but I just spent too much time drooling over lavender and sage...sigh. I would love all that stuff to come and live with me. That eidy will last you a lifetime. Good investment I think.

    Gosh i know what you mean about the fancy lens. BUT my sister inlaw has the same camera and lens and she totally knows what she is doing and she swaps her lens over sometimes to get the shot she wants. She is so beautiful that when she is taking randon shots of drains in central Bristol people just smile at her and she serenely smiles back. i think people are used to seeing all sorts these days so a lovely gal taking a photo of a leaf wont raise eyebrows. You family tease you because they can, if it weren't because of snapping away it would be something else. It's their job.


  9. Lucky Annie!!!
    Your photos are always amazingly beautiful!!!
    Good luck with the public photo taking. I would pretend that you're either a fashion photographer scouting locations, a spy, or paparazzi.

  10. ps. Not talking to you because I wasn't the winner.

  11. Congrats to the winner! Love your eiderdown looks so comfy - perfect for curling up in with a good book x

  12. Loving that eiderdown, big love right there. I am so with you on taking ohotos in public too, I get so nervous but I really don't know why, I feel like I miss so many great opportunities and just need to bite the bullet xoxoxox

  13. Congrats to Annie!!

    Lovely slippers, although I don't "do" slippers I like to be barefoot, I do have a pair of fur booties for when my feet are particularly cold but don't wear them often. My Mum loves slippers and seems to buy a new pair every time we got out (it's become a family joke!!)

    What sort of camera do you have? We are hoping to get a DSLR next month and have more or less settled on a Canon EOS 550d.

    My Mum and Sis take the mickey when I take random pics - I've just learnt to ignore them. They think I'm a loon and I'd hate to disappoint them!!


    S x

    PS how did the chair turn out?

  14. Ah, congrats to Anne, lush prizes and some surprises in there. Gotta love it!!!
    Trying to type but the Prince keeps pressing his face in mine and saying "I am going to marry you". Too cute for words!
    Loving the eiderdown, always important for snugging. I use the Blanket of Glory but discovered the kids are nabbing it first, which means I must press on with my granny blanket, which is still resembling an overgrown hankie.
    Slippers are cute, I love Ruby and Ed stuff and always keep an eye out of it in TK Maxx.
    Do you knit? Or can you crochet at Knit and Natter? There is one here by the sea, but I didn't want to rock up with my hankie and find them all Knitty Noras....
    xx x

  15. Those slippers are super cute...I love anything with bows on!
    Gorgeous...GORGEOUS eiderdown.
    Enjoy your knit and natter night,and have a happy week. :0)

  16. Congrats to Ann, lucky girl. Your slippers are so cute and what a bargain. I'm in love with your eiderdown it is so pretty and looks very cosy.
    I took my camera out with me on Saturday and my frends were taking the mickey because i take photo's of random things. I started a photography course a few weeks ago, it is definitely worth doing, I've learnt so much in a short space of time. Try taking your photo in landscape mode to get everything in focus.
    Have a great time at your knit and natter. Deb xxxx

  17. Hope you enjoyed your knitting group, ideal to make Mondays nicer.

  18. Thank you so much ! I am so excited to be the winner of your fabulous giveaway, I can't wait to start using all the lovely things.
    I love your gorgeous eiderdown,perfect for snuggling on the sofa.
    Ann x

  19. Hi - not sure if you got my email or my comment on your last post, but I am your swap partner for Jewel's tea time swap. Your parcel is all ready to go, so if you could contact me with your postal details I'll get it off to you. If however you are unable to go ahead with the swap just let me know - I am aware how sometimes with the best will in the world life just becomes a little too busy at the point of swap. Linda xxx

  20. Hello!

    Just popping in from Three Cottage! I`m a new follower :)

    Love your home!


  21. Well done to Annie!! Hope you are having fun embracing your creative side with the knit & natter, and the photography!!
    I adore your eiderdown : )

    Sharon xx