No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better...

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

A day of plenty

Hello there,

Firstly, thank you for all your lovely comments on my last post.  In the (too long) break from blogging, I pretty much stopped taking photos at all, but in coming back to the fold I realise just how much I enjoy it, and how important a part of blogging it is for me.  Taking photographs makes me really see things and I love it.

Secondly, welcome, welcome to my new followers.  It's lovely to have you here.

So, today, I have lots more photos of a market.  Because finally, I have uploaded my images of the vintage market I went to recently in Woodbridge.  Oh, my!  You know there are some days when you visit a flea market or vintage fair, when you traipse around scanning ahead from stall to stall and reach the end and wish you hadn't bothered?  Well, this was the exact opposite of all that.

It fell on a crisp clear day a couple of weeks ago and wandering around felt like being in the South of France.  Yes, really.


And even as I look through these photos, I see all sorts of things that I somehow missed ,and want to go back to.  But before you feel too sorry for the opportunity lost, let me show you what I DID buy....

I started slowly with this sweet little dish, made of Welsh pottery.  Love the flowers.  Love the dots.  Love everything about it really.  (And it didn't cost a lot.)


Then I spied these two lurking in the shadows.  No House by the Sea should be without them.


Then I happened upon a stall selling tiles made locally in the 1950s in my favourite colour of the moment.  (Can't seem to get enough of mustard...). 


By this point I was giving myself a stern talking to about the Age of Austerity ruling in the House of NKK etc, but the woman in the bird's nest hat simply smiled.


And that was my final purchase.  Final final.  Until I saw this.


Really, I shouldn't be let out.  Clearly, I cannot be trusted.  But in my defence, I defy any of you to have walked away without this beautiful blanket.  I know I should just have gone home and whipped one up myself.  But we all know how long that's going to take...  And this is made of pure wool.  And in such lovely colours.  And I couldn't buy more than a few of balls of yarn for the price I paid for it.  So really, it absolutely had to come home with me.  Don't you think?


So, now I need some advice, please.  As you can see, it's a little too small for our stupidly big bed (for which, I have Mr. P to thank).  And I am wondering about the best way to add to it.  I know I could just add to the border.  Or I could make granny squares in a single colour (probably either red or navy to tie the room together (in a non matchy match way, hopefully) and sew these in a sort of mega border around the outside, expanding the blanket by a granny square width all around, which I think might do the trick.  

What do you think?


PS the lovely Rebecca from Posh Yarn was there and I chatted briefly but then ran away in a fit of shyness (more of that another day).  Sorry.

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Borough Market

Hello everybody,

When I was down in London Town for Handmade Renegade I finally managed to do something that was on my list of London lovely things to do fo the longest time:  visit Borough Market.

I could tell you about the posh coffee, or the delicate first picked leaves of darjeeling tea I tasted, or the amazing breads and cakes, or the granola or home made jams.   Or the amazing butchers and fishmongers.  Oh, and the cheese.  But instead I thought I'd just show you lots of photos to drool over.  Just in time for dinner.


A feast, I tell you!

There were other things too around the market....
loved the light here...
I know how he feels sometimes...



And best of all were these, used as shade outside a new restaurant.  They make my hear skip a beat every time I look at them.


Back soon with goodies from the flea market.



Sunday, September 16, 2012

Handmade Renegade comes to London

Hello everybody,

Hope you're having a fab weekend.  I have had the most lovely couple of days.  Lots to tell you, but for now, just a quick post because I am about to get in a car and hurtle up the motorway to Yorkshire for a few days.  Trip to Harrogate planned.  V excited.

But before I get to that,  let me tell you about a fantabulous craft fair that's on in London this weekend.


Went yesterday with my sister and niece.  I was a big fan from my time in the States, written about here so was very excited to see what London had to offer. 



Those ice lollies are now on their way to my niece's bedroom wall.


Folksy had thoughtfully provided the materials for those overcome with the need to craft.  Check out the sausage dog!


And there was a paper flower making class in progress.  Just the thing to brighten up a winter window ledge.


And tucked away on a shelf were these rather shy looking sheep.


But the highlight of the day was meeting the lovely Emma from Silverpebble whose jewellery is just delightful.  My first real life blog encounter - my niece was very excited.  (Sorry there is no photo of her fab stall.  I was a bit shy to ask.)  Were we not living in the age of austerity in the House of NKK, I would have bought the spinny windmill.  And I have plans when normal salaried service resumes to attend a workshop with Emma.  For now, it was a delight just to look.


Yorkshire bound.  Enjoy the rest of your weekend.  More soon.


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Enchanted garden

Hello everybody,

I owe you a post on the treasures I found at the vintage fair I went to on Saturday but haven't taken the photos yet.  Thought you might like to see my new favourite place instead.  

The Walled Garden is minutes from my house and it took me until last week to go.  I've been three times since.  It sells plants.  But to call it a garden centre doesn't do it justice.  It is beautiful and enchanted.  Inspiring and soothing.  Tranquil and vibrant.  It is everything you might need to begin to create your own garden.  

In short, it has given me the jolt of enthusiasm I needed to engage with my own wilderness.  The old lady house by the sea came with its own garden.  My first.  And I have been terrified of it.  The old lady was quite the gardener in her day and passersby stop and tell me that the garden used to be beautiful.  Yes indeed.  For a year I have looked out the windows at the devastation wreaked by the builders, the rain and the mad growth spurt that followed, so that the plants and weeds are now bickering with each other for space.

Builders - gotta love 'em
And if I'm honest, I don't like much of what's here.  It's nothing against the old lady.  But, well, it's an old lady's garden.  Not mine.

So this morning, I got up really early and attacked this small bed.  It's just outside the living room, and you can just see the double doors we had put in which open onto the garden.  And this bed depressed the hell out of me.  Not sure why.  It just wasn't very joyful.

An hour or so later, I had this.

Better, but not great.

I'd ordered lots of bulbs, so I buried them in the hope that next Spring will be a colourful one - pink narcissi - who knew!  And don't you just love rununculus?

And once I'd got the bulbs sorted, I planted up some flowers.  (That spiky thing is a red hot poker - love.)  I can't wait for next Spring to see what happens.

Not Walled Garden standard.  But a start.

How does your garden grow?


Friday, September 7, 2012

The Yardarm (and cake)

Oh, it's good to be back.  Having a lovely time catching up with everybody.  And isn't this week just fab?  I feel like we've concentrated a whole summer's worth of sunshine and joy into the last 7 days.  The sun has shone and the coast is glorious.

How good of you to remember that we have embarked on a little venture in the House of NKK.

 The Yardarm has been open for business for a few months now.  We welcomed our first guests for Easter.

And then it rained.  And rained.  And rained some more.  Nobody came and it was awful.

Thankfully, it picked up after that and we have been busy all Summer.

In September, Aldeburgh is at its loveliest.  With the kids gone back to school, the Summer rush is dying down, but there's still plenty to do.

Thought you might be tempted to come and see for yourself. The Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival is a two day feast at the end of September (29th and 30th), with fringe events running in nearby locations over the following two weeks.  And to get you in the mood, when you arrive at The Yardarm, you'll find a decent bottle of wine.  And cake.  Specifically, this cake.

Come and stay.  For the food festival.  Or anytime.  It would be lovely to have you here.


P.S. Normal blogging will resume shortly.  Hope you don't mind the shameless plug in the meantime....

Monday, September 3, 2012

Crochetdermy (and sneaking in the back door hoping no-one noticed...)

Hello everybody,

I had thought that my blogging days were over, what with one thing and another (mostly to do with feeling suddenly like I had nothing to say anymore now that I can no longer distract you from my woeful crafting attempts with tales of Manhattan).  But in the last week, at least three ideas for posts have sort of fallen across my path, and so I thought I'd give it a go again.  I can make no promises, or at least none that that you'd believe given recent performance, but here goes.

We are living in an age of austerity in the House of NKK.  Gone are the days of extravagance and whimsy.  We are experiencing cut backs and general frugality, the price paid for a career sabbatical.  I introduced a ban on magazine buying a while back, so haven't been browsing through my usual glossies of late.  But last week I cracked and bought Homes & Antiques (this girl knows how to have a good time.  Oh, yes).

And immediately I thought of the women of blogland.  For inside is the story of Shauna Richardson, whose crochet animals are on an epic scale.  The photos in the article show some beautiful creatures, all crocheted straight onto scale forms rather than fitted like a sock afterwards.  Amazing.

All images are photos of the ones in H&A.  My photos are crap; H&A's are not.  I need to get back my photo eye.
But the really amazing thing that has everyone in the know (not me, obviously) buzzing is the Lion Heart Project, which is on show outside the Natural History Museum until 10 September.  She's made these incredible larger than life crochet lions, now housed in a glass case in front of the museum.  

And you can see her working on them on the youtube link below.  Really worth a look.

It struck me as just the kind of eccentric thing that you'd get.  I tried to show Mr. P. but he wasn't that enthused.  So I just had to come and show you instead.


If you haven't already had a look, H&A also have some amazing treats from Harmony & Rosie, which she wrote about here.  See page 36.  (well, a girl can look...)

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