Thursday, 21 April 2011


... today ...

I'm whisking my blog back in time ... to just over a month ago
to some lovely things that happened in March
starting with 17th March
when I had a lovely day with my blog friend Chris Gray
who came to St. Ives for the day to meet up with me

it was chilly that day, a little light mizzle in the air
so we went straight to Ocean Grill for a warming lunch of
carrot, honey and ginger soup ... which was really delicious

over a long rambling lunch we chatted and exchanged pressies
Chris gave me a white candle
wrapped in a beautiful printed and stitched sleeve

and also this lovely matching crocheted tissue box holder
and for my little cottage she decorated this wooden spoon
in a country style with rafia bow, a stitched skirt and
finished with a primitive tomte santa made from clay
Chris spoilt me with a big jar of beads and
some of her hand dyed threads
(will show those on my other blog as they are pebble colours)
Chris cross stitched a row of red hearts for me
and everything came beautifully wrapped in country style ribbons

I love these tomtes!
Over lunch Chris gave me this piece of cotton that she had hand dyed
in exchange for some I gave her that I'd dyed with red cabbage

We initiated a challenge to work on our fabrics and create something
to "show and tell" when we meet up again later in the year
After lunch we visited the exhibition at St. Ives Society of Artists
admiring the work of Roy Ray (Chris's favourite)
and Peter Wray (mine)

I bought one of Peter Wray's original printed cards
and treated us both to a St. Ives Society of Artists sketchbook
... so that's another challenge ...
to have made a start in our books before we meet up again
I took Chris through some of the old cobbled back streets, showed her the cottage of Alfred Wallis that regularly features on my work and the famous, most photographed, green door in The Digey
which has a whole flickr group dedicated to photos of it - here

It started to drizzle (we had a lot of mist and drizzle in March)
so we had chocolate treats from I Should Coco (award winning honey and thyme choccies - yummy!)

and later we ended up in Hub for a comforting hot chocolate drink and cake ... the end of a lovely day

In March I had another beautiful parcel from Lisa of
Mud Hound Studio
always beautifully and impeccably wrapped
such a special gift from Lisa
vintage pages in Sonnets from the Portuguese
by Elizabeth Barrett Browningand these are the beautiful silk ribbons I bought from Lisa's shop

I've been using the watercolour silk ribbons
on the piece of fabric from Chris (my challenge piece above)
I made a good start on it during my last crow day with Jo

We are having fun stitching the winter trees landscape
from the December issue of
Stitch with the Embroiderers Guild magazine
So far ... I have hand stitched the base layers
the silk ribbons have such a lovely sheen
and beautiful soft earthy tones
running stitches in gold metallic thread
with a chiffon sky in rosy glows
the colours of a Cornish sunrise

the roseate glow over sleepy rooftops
We've had some really stunning sunrises recently
but also some misty mornings too leading to beautiful spring days
lovely, lovely spring
in March I became a member of St. Ives Arts Club and
I've really been enjoying the art sketchbooks workshops
tutored by Sally MacCabe on Monday afternoons
Mondays are now my most favourite day of the week

I enjoy the walk down to St. Ives, stopping to take a few photos or gather interesting finds. I take the time to visit a different gallery each week and buy an inspiring art card and, if the tide is out, I walk on the beach and see what catches my eye ...

then it's time for my sketchbook workshop
time to play with collage and paints
and then afternoon tea and cake

I'm working in two sketchbooks at the moment
St. Ives blues with yellow and green (a Cornish spring theme)
and spring yellow with palest gold

palest gold
for Things I love Thursday

and finally some photos of the March Treasure Hunt Paper Swap
organised by Lawendula

we each had to find ...

something blue, something old, something new, a doodle
a paper that is nice to touch
a paper with all colours of the rainbow on it
a paper with words in a strange/foreign language
a lovely package (e.g. from your favorite tea, sweet, perfume)
a page from a magazine or newspaper you love
an ad(vertisment) you love
a piece of handpainted paper
a newspaper page from your country/area
a bus ticket (or train/Underground/metro, tram)
a scented paper, a found paper
a paper with a quote you love
-a shocking paper (why? Color? Theme? Meaning?)
-a paper that means comfort to you (why?)
-a paper that is totally "you" (why?)

my papers are here
My swap partner was Franca Maria
who sent me all these lovely vintage pages
beautiful magazine pages, scented papers and textured papers
and a little birdie that she felted and stitched
art and chocolate - the best combination
some toning squares I cut from a magazine page
because I love this red tree and and the girl in the red coat
found papersrusted and lovely
and more squares I found interesting
loving rose with gold
and best ... a tag made by Franca Maria
such a lovely swap
and a nice end to March

I will be back soon with an April catch up
I need to do this (get up to date) before I can open my shop
which I am excited about and longing to do!

hope you all have a very happy Easter
creative wishes


Sandie's Patch said...

Lovely post, i particularly like your stitching with the silk ribbons - my kinda colours!
Sounds like March was a very interesting month too.
Good luck with the shop, have a great time!

Sandie xx

Jane Housham said...

So much in one post, wonderful. My head's reeling. I used to come to St Ives quite frequently, with my mother, when I was much younger, and I love it dearly, but I'm sad that I don't know many, if any, of the shops and cafes you've mentioned in your post. But the artists, yes, still familiar with their names.
I've just had an old novel in the post today, set in St Ives -- A Private Inquiry by Jessica Mann.

daisy said...

March was a busy month ... now I could comment on the beautiful photographs of divine fabric, inspiring papers, blah blah blah ... but what is this about you opening a shop? What have I missed? Come on now, spill the beans ole girl!

Julie said...

A thoroughly absorbing post and thank you for the link to Lisa'a shop. I feel a spend coming on! :-) xxx I'm so glad you're enjoying your Mondays!


Sorry it was such a long post but had so much to share before moving on to April

Easter blessings to you all x

La Dolce Vita said...

where do I start? just another gorgeous post, and I do love all your work! the parcel from Lisa is just swoon worthy!

daisy said...

Re: online shop ... Very exciting news Carolyn ... I've packed my tent, sleeping bag, supplies of food, counted my pennies, grabbed a good book to read etc & reserved my place at the front of the queue ... :o)

Suztats said...

Very nice post. Best wishes with your shop!

JP said...

I soooooooooooo enjoyed this post - your workshop sounds a good way to spend a Monday!!! - love the stitching on Chris' piece

Dosfishes at Sparkle Days Studios said...

March was a fabulous month, wow, lots of good friends, fab art, and making the most glorious pieces with those silks. xox corrine

blueberries in the fields said...

i wish i had more time to just sit and admire, your blog and your art is so beautiful Carolyn. Such wonderful gifts you received from your friend.
i wish you a very happy and sunny Easter holiday.
sending love

A bird in the hand said...

Happy Easter, dear friend. Reading this post made me want to fly to St. Ives and spend some time stitching with you over a cup of coffee or tea... such a pleasant daydream.

A shop called "I should coco" -- that made me smile. It's been forever since I heard that expression.

xoxo Colette

Twiglet said...

Oh such a beautiful post to share with us - thanks lots. Happy Easter.

Heavens2Betsy said...

Oh it is so idyllic a place to visit here. Everything here appeals to me in one way, or another but I particularly love your ribboned stitching and your beautiful descriptions. Penny

Lynn said...

I don't know what to say, where to start? Flowing through your adventures, gifts, art, art making, much like a very best ever dream...a holiday...delicious dessert...yes, that's enough I am full and enjoying and satisfied all at once! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

LaWendula said...

Thanks dear for showing my stuff! So glad you liked it! xox

Barb Cady said...

What a wonderful post. I so wish I lived down by you! Have a wonderful creative Easter, I can't wait to read about April! x

Ro Bruhn said...

What a fabulous post, so full of inspiration. I visited St Ives a few years ago on a trip back to England and your descriptions take me back there to your wonderful part of the world.

Jill said...

Happy Easter to you - what a wonderful post, it is hard to decide what I like best, but those rosy ribbon take some beating.

mano said...

what a wonderful post - so many great ideas there! the silk ribbons are fantastic!
happy easter to you, have beautiful days!

Grandma Yellow Hair said...

I always love seeing what your doing Carolyn. These silk ribbons are so lovely would love to work with them.
Just wanted to wish you a Happy Easter

audrey said...

Oh my goodness, Carolyn, what a long beautiful fun post this is. So many great photographs and things to see and read about. I love the silk ribbon you are using in your piece ~ the colors are SO beautiful.
I hope you have a lovely Easter.
♥ audrey

fibrefrolics said...

Stunning post as always Carolyn. Full of little treasures. Especially love the earthy tones in the ribbons. A sketchbook workshop sounds wonderful. I can see why you love Mondays! I am off to read through it all again. Have a wonderful, peaceful and happy Easter.

A time to dance said...

What wonderful things to look at and read about I feel inspired and I have been looking for lovely hair ribbons for will pop over to your friend...Happy easter! H

Mrs Moen said...

Happy Easter to you too, Carolyn!

sea-blue-sky & abstracts said...

So much of interest as always Carolyn - I've always admired the green door (and remember that Andrew Potter had a painting of it in his gallery a few years back) but didn't realise just quite how famous it was.

Love the photos. Happy Easter. x

Linda said...

How very beautiful. I am extremely inspired. In fact...I'm going to have to come back another day and soak it all in some more!! I do love those silk ribbon pieces stitched down as they are. I must do that. Then what? ha! Guess I'll come back and see!!!

mimilove forever said...

A positive feast for the senses there even got chocolate in, perfect! ;0)

Hope your world is peaceful missus...thinking of you all, big hugs and Happy Easter xx

noelle said...

So many lovely things Carolyn! An online shop sounds exciting, and yes I shall be there spring bank holiday with you all !!!! Cant wait xxx

Fresh Garden said...

A nice blog, Carolyn!
Thanks for sharing, I enjoyed the visit. :D

Victoria said...

Your blog is just an inspiration - what a joy to look at. x

Cathy said...

Amazingly detailed post Carolyn. Where do you find the time to create so fascinating posts? Mine are hastily cobbled together. So much to ingest and drool over and be inspired by. What a wonderful time you had with your blog friend and St. Ives is such a great place to meet up. Love that green door. I must have missed that on my one and only visit.

Kim Dellow said...

I just love your work Carolyn, that you so much for sharing. Have a good weekend.

KathyB said...

I love your 'heart curser'! I have never seen anything techy that's so charming. You have a lot of good stuff packed into this blog post, but I especially like what you're doing with the hand sewing on the silk ribbons. It has a fabulously fragile look which is wonderful. The colors are so soft. Beautiful effect. Thank you for sharing. I appreciate your work because it is so different from mine. I use bright colors and very small pieces of fabric. See what I do with scraps.

Debrina said...

Oh my gawd, Carolyn! What a feast for the eyes and the soul! You and Lisa should TOTALLY collaborate on something together one of these days - you have such similar taste in fibre, fabric and colour - I'd just love to see what came out of it!

Lynette (NZ) said...

Always love your posts - I especially love the silk stitchings. And thanks to you I have now discovered Chris' blog too :-)