Sunday, 24 November 2013

Out and About: Cowslip Christmas Fair

Hello hello!  

Man, it's been a few weeks since I wrote that self-indulgent, whinge-fest, hasn't it.  You will, I hope, be pleased to hear that I bounced back very quickly and settled right back into my cosy, happy, little bubble.  The photo above is me, obviously, on a recent dark morning, looking as tired as I felt and delighting in this stars/stripes combo.  I tried to do one of those selfies that Vanessa (Coco Rose) et al do... You know, just a snapshot of my torso with my arm showing my cup in front of my top.  Well, I would like tips on how to do those pictures without the lady bumps stealing the show.  It feels as though I can't quite get the camera far enough away from my body.  Tips anyone?  So anyway, I just took a plain old photo of my boat race!


Life has been ace these last few weeks.  My new job seems to have finally bedded in and I'm out and about, keeping very busy and learning lots about parts of the organisation that were out of my remit previously.  In the last few weeks I've been to St Albans (my office base but it's 50 miles away), Manchester and Edinburgh for work and I'm driving to Leeds tomorrow for a whole day of risk training. 

Last weekend, I was at Cowslip for the Christmas Fair with some lovely friends and my lovely mum and sister.  It was well worth the long, late night drive to North Cornwall and every bit as gorgeous and inspiring as I'd hoped.  Cowslip is a working farm in an idyllic location with a delightful fabric shop and lush workrooms for the sewing classes they hold.  There is also a cafe on site with the most delicious menu - I think they hold cooking classes there too.

A view across the farmland and misty valley from outside the fabric shop at Cowslip.
Anyway, the Christmas Fair was held in a few of the barns and outhouses at the farm.  All decorated wonderfully with fairy lights, wooden reindeer, Christmas trees and hundreds of gorgeous quilts.  So inspiring and such a delight to wander round.  

There were quilts draped over every available surface.  Even the twiggy reindeer weren't safe!

I put a few solid hours into building my fabric stash and rewarded my hard labour with plenty of mulled apple cider, coffee and cake.  Tough, but you just gotta put the work in!  

This little wooden box of fabric makes me very happy indeed.  Stripes, spots and checks.
I have come home with the yarn for two new knitting projects and yarn from Suzie Johnson (The Wool Sanctuary).  I also scooped up lots of redwork patterns as Mandy Shaw had a fantastic stall there.  

I got started on some little redwork patterns straight away.
Mandy's stall was, of course, lush.  The Christmas quilts and toys that she had on display were amazing and a huge Christmas tree that almost reached the ceiling was chock-full of red and white decorations and bunting.  And we all know how much I love red and white.  Just gorgeous. 

Mandy Shaw's stall:  too many lovely things to look at
This weekend is the last time before Christmas that I'll have time to properly relax and do nothing so although I got up early, I sat around in my PJs til lunchtime, knitting and watching Gilmore Girls.  Then, at half past two (!) I had an hour-long bubble bath using every last drop of hot water in the house and started a new Penny Vincenzi novel.  It was bliss!  Afterwards, I put on make-up and some clean PJs and have been pottering around.  Some chocolate tiffin has been made, the kitchen has been cleaned and my craft room is as tidy and fragrant as can be.  It has been such a perfect day.  

Have a great week everyone. 

Much love and thanks for reading.



PS Thanks for all of your comments, I read and appreciated all of them.  I do understand that sometimes we all overshare and, of course, that's what I was doing by moaning about my personal issues here in my little corner of the interweb.  Heck, we all need to offload somewhere.  

I wanted to make the point (to a person in my real life who I know secretly reads my blog) that when you write something on the internet it can be seen by anyone and is live for many years.  So at least make sure it is true! 


  1. Thank you for sharing the gorgeous fair as I won't be getting to any this year but you certainly inspired me especially with your fabric stash and the lovely rose prints in the blanket beneath. Take care and so glad I'm not the only one that doesn't get dressed the minute they wake up! LOL!

  2. Wonderful :) sorry about your recent sadness. When it's family or near family it can be tough. But glad you're smiling again. Love your needlework. I've just brought Susie's humbugs. I hope I will finish them before Christmas. :) xx

  3. Lovely post. Glad to hear you're feeling your happy self again. xx

  4. Great post Nicki, Cowslip looks so fab and I've loved following Mandy Shaws work since she was on Kirstys show. Enjoy your day,so far sounds utter bliss.lots of love,xxx

  5. Hi Nikki, so pleased you are blogging again and are feel like your happy self again :) The Christmas Fair looked like fun. Love the Mandy Shaw things you have been making. Are there kits for them or were they from one of her books? Look forward to seeing your other makes if/when you blog about them.

  6. I love your blog and follow you on IG (happybunnyl). I'm so pleased you are enjoying your new job. Cowslip sounds wonderful xx

  7. Lovely post, so glad things are looking good for you.

  8. so pleased to read you are chirpy once more! Nothing worse than feeling down, especially at this time of year. Cowslip looks marvellous - I am v. envious! I'd love to go but I live too far north to go really, so have enjoyed your photos instead!
    BH x

  9. So lovely to see you blogging again! The fair looks wonderful, and you came away with some lovely things!

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