Monday, 22 August 2011

There Must Be Magic

I can't post any photos of my latest wee project as it's a birthday present for my brother and I only mailed it off this afternoon (only a week late!).  So just in case he happens to check this blog I'll wait till he gets it before I share it here!

So instead I thought I'd indulge my childish side...
I have so many favourite childhood books - from preschool right through to Lord of the Rings and Anne of Green Gables but the preschool books all tend to have one major thing in common - beautiful illustrations!  My mum loved children's book illustrations and even when we were too old to buy for she would still often come home with different examples she'd picked up in charity shops.  When we moved to London I really couldn't bring all my books with me so many boxes of books were consigned to my Dad's garage.  Every time I go back up now I go through a few more boxes of stuff, clear some out, and invariably bring some back down with me!  This one came down the last time and it has so many happy memories.  I've realised upon reading it again on Saturday that I can still hear my mum's voice in my head, reading this aloud to me and for that reason alone this book is very important to me.

Aren't the title and the cover illustration just wonderful?! There Must Be Magic.  Because of course, to all children the world is full of magic!  I've recently been reading a number of books -  Buddhist, Zen and mediation related - and they all talk about the importance of getting back this childlike wonder with the world.  Well, these words and illustrations do it for me every time so I thought I would share a few of them.

 The book is called 'There Must be Magic - First Poems for Children'.  The illustrations were by John Overmyer and the poems were selected by Arthur Wortman.  'Otherwise' the poem containing the title of the book is by Aileen Fisher and one of my other favourites from the book is 'Happy Thought' by Robert Louis Stevenson.

I'm going back up to visit my family in Scotland next weekend and I'm sure my Dad and his wife would be happy if I gave them back some more of their garage (maybe even enough that they could fit their car in!) so I may just have to bring some more children's books back down with me.

Did anyone else have this book? What were your favourite children's books? What ones have you held on to above all others?

Sunday, 14 August 2011

Peaches and green

I finished my second Sorbetto top last weekend but never got round to taking a photo of me wearing it until this weekend.  I'd like to say it was due to an unusually busy week but it seems like every week is busy and time just going faster and faster. On Thursday morning I had a wee freak out when getting ready for work as it seemed like only a minute ago it had been Wednesday morning getting ready for work - I really felt like I was in Groundhog day for a moment!

Anyway, this weekend was a welcome break from the hustle and bustle of London life, I went to stay with my brother and his girlfriend in Abergavenny.  Me and my brother went to Brecon yesterday for the Brecon jazz festival so I asked him to take my photo outside Brecon Cathedral - the venue for the concert we went to.  I love my second Sorbetto as much as my first one! The fabric is gorgeous - a Liberty print I picked up on Goldhawk Road and I underlined it with a lovely soft white cotton just to make sure it wasn't see-through.  I know I'll get lots of wear out of it as it goes with so many colours - peach and green being a favourite!

The Brecon Jazz Festival was great fun - there was music going on everywhere you turned - in pubs, outside the Cathedral, in make-shift tents set up for the weekend.  We went to see the Tim Kliphuis Quintet featuring Dave Newton - a band made up of members from Holland, Scotland, England and Malta.  They played a great mixture of jazz, folk, classical and North African music with a violin, double bass, guitar, piano and a fantastic percussionist who played lots of instruments, including some really unusual ones, like a large vase!  The venue was stunning and Brecon itself was lovely.  We got some freshly made still-warm welsh cakes which and my brother got a gorgeous cider Happy Daze, which unfortunately as I was driving I could only have a sip of.

I don't know if I've mentioned it before but my brother and his girlfriend moved to Wales to open an Italian restaurant in Abergavenny and to say I'm proud and excited about it would be a huge understatement!  I know you could say I'm slightly bias but my brother is an amazing chef and his friend who he's going into business with is a specialist pizza chef from Italy - ooh, I cannae wait!

So.. what next for the Sorbetto?!  I just spotted the PDF for a sleeve pattern for the Sorbetto over at Sew, incidentally.  I don't have much of a fabric stash though and I'm pretty skint this month so I'll need to start scouring the charity shops to see what I can find.

Tuesday, 2 August 2011

Keep on the Sunny Side

Oh well, so much for staying in on Sunday and getting my second Sorbetto done. The sun was just too alluring so me and Oliver headed to the park instead. I took a new book to start on 'Stamboul Train' by Graham Greene - it's so much fun, lots of mystery and intrigue!  To add to the sunny afternoon vibe we had two different tasty ciders from Wales to try, and enjoyed an afternoon reading, drinking and dozing in the sunshine.

I did go home in the evening and get the top cut out though. I'm doing two layers as the green & white Liberty print (which you can see in this post) is a bit see-through and I don't want another unwearable top like the yellow/white stripe one.  I thought about lining it but Toile and Trouble suggested I could just double layer for ease so that's what I'm doing as it really is a lot easier!  I got the staystitching done tonight and the darts but then I had to go out for a while and now, after 10pm, it's too late to get the sewing machine out.

So, seeing as I don't have another top to show you yet how about this rather lovely Parisienne plate by Ridgway instead?! It's from the 1950s and I just couldn't resist it in a lovely art gallery/antique shop in Kirkudbright.  The girl sitting at the table with the gorgeous 1950s dress reminds me of Audrey Hepburn in Funny Face.