Cushtie cushions!

I’ve always fancied learning how to make a cushion and when the opportunity arose at Crafty Angel I jumped at it!

Crafty Angel has been open for just under a year and you could not find a more peaceful setting for this creative haven.  Angela is a graphic designer and this is reflected in her flare for fabric choice and attention to detail.  She is also great fun and a skilled teacher immediately putting you at ease.

Everything was supplied to make a piped, button back cushion.  All one had to do was turn up and bring a packed lunch!  Tea, coffee and an impressive selection of soft drinks and cake appeared at regular intervals too!   The only decision one had to make was which material to choose.  Believe you me, with so much fabulousness that was hard!

Three ‘fat quarters’ are all it takes to create this cushion along with some piping and covered buttons.  Along with learning how to make the actual cushion there were lots of top tips on sewing and use of equipment.  I for one had no idea you could unscrew a thread spool and store your needles inside!  Well did you?!  (Ok, so it’s just me!)

Firstly, we made the piping which was actually more straightforward than I’d imagined.  Placing it round the cushion was a little bit more tricky but again Angela demonstrated techniques to create a professional finish.

Once the binding was on it was then time to put the whole thing together and make covered buttons and button holes.  As before, all the stages were demonstrated and we had all the tools required, including state of the art sewing machines to make life easier.

Even when muggins here managed to accidentally cut through the cushion backing the ‘Crafty Angel’ came to the rescue with the most ingenious solution.  I wonder if you can spot him!

There were three of us on the course today and it wasn’t even lunchtime when we’d all decided we want to return for more ‘Crafty Angel’ magic!  Future workshops will include dressmaking, umbrella making, machine embroidery, lampshade making, knitting and crochet with Rowan Yarn, bag making, quilting and book binding to name a few!  Personally, I can’t wait!


Enough of this misery in January palaver!

Right, enough of this ‘misery in January’ palaver! All this ‘dry January’, frantic dieting and rushing off to join a gym is a load of twaddle! Yes, Christmas is over but it doesn’t mean we should all wear sackcloth and ashes and self flagellate! Some of us have birthdays in January and the days are getting longer! I’m on a one woman mission to cheer everyone up. Go out and have that glass of wine, eat cake and be merry! It doesn’t have to cost a fortune to enjoy yourself (if you’ve given the plastic a bashing last month), go see a free exhibition, go see that buddy you haven’t seen in ages and go for a walk (after all the gym costs a packet and you’ll have lost interest by mid February anyway).

It has been a while, but let’s begin a new story…

It has been a while and I’ve missed this.  ‘Whirlwind’, a bit frantic, frenetic, whatever you like to call it, the last few months have whizzed.  There have been some low points but on the whole this is an exciting new adventure I’m on.  Today on the way to visit a customer I walked down Scotland Street in Edinburgh and this is what I saw….

Although Pat, Domenica, Angus and the others did not appear to feature in this mini library it seemed appropriate that Ian Rankin was there as he also features in Alexander McCall Smith’s tales of Edinburgh life.  ‘The Complaints’ introduces another Edinburgh copper Malcolm Fox and not the bolshie D.I. Rebus whom I happen to be rather fond of.  

In the rather optimistic hope that it might in fact, all be true, I moved on in search of ‘No 44’……..

Alas not, this, as they say, is the end of the road.

Notes from a small village….

In this day of social networks, constant connectivity and 24 hour news feed it is easy enough to while away time glued to the screen of tablet or phone to the detriment of connection with the ‘real’ world.  Sometimes life reminds you that in spite of the undoubted advantages of technologies such as Skype, FaceTime, Facebook and the like for keeping ‘in touch’ with those near and far, there is nothing to beat face to face.  

As is my want on a day off from trucking, I try to walk if I can rather than getting in the car (big effort to keep the newly acquired Fitbit happy!).  It is not always easy, as anyone who lives in a rural village will tell you, the supermarket, dentist, cinema or theatre usually require pre planning and a car journey.  Today though I was meeting two girlfriends for coffee at our local farm shop cafe, definitely walkable.  I gave myself a good half hour for a walk that should take about 15 minutes.  On the village high street I first met the manageress of said cafe on her day off, and her beau.  Whilst chatting with them, the landlord of the pub stuck his head out the door to say hello and ask if I could pop in.  He and his wife just wanted to say hello as it had been a while.  Needless to say the half hour flew by and in the end I accepted a lift to my coffee date!

At the farm shop elevenses turned into lunch with my friends one of whom is leaving to live in the Middle East.  She gave us both a mug and had bought herself one too.  The three mugs were all the same, the idea being that when we drink from our mug we would be reminded of our lunch and our friendship.  A simple but beautiful plan.  

On my walk home I passed another favourite eatery, the bacon butty van in the lay by.  The owner, a long standing buddy was just closing up and mopping down but we put the world to rights as we always do!  I got my usual wave from  the boys at the local garage and popped into the little tea room to drop off some card catalogues………the chocolate cake looked very good indeed……well it would have been rude not to!  

I walked in my door and made a cup of tea feeling grateful for community and friendship.