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What a gloriously sunny bank holiday weekend we have just enjoyed. A little bit of sunshine is good for the soul.
I am trying to keep a balance of things in my life by adopting ’a little and often’ approach.
I love gardening but find that this is the season where there is housework indoors and housework outdoors. So I have been trying to keep on top of it all by doing a little inside and a little outside.
Taking a little time out of working to see friends, take trips (Powis Castle above) and enjoy spring’s inspiration.
Having a little time to read (dream holiday booked for this summer!) and a little time to knit. I’m hoping this approach will stop me going a little crazy often!
I am, creatively speaking, all over the place at the moment! Card designs, paintings, patterns. I’m following my fancy wherever it leads me.
I keep trying to tidy up and find a ‘blank’ space to start from but I inevitably find something that I meant to do ages ago and didn’t. Which is how these came about. Thinking back, it must have been getting on for a year since we had these few days down in St Ives which is where I took these photo’s.
There is a place called The Island which is a large lump of land sticking out at the top of the town centre away from the shops. It used to be part of the defences for St Ives and had a fort on it at one time. Now it’s used by the Coastguard and birdwatchers.
Artists from the Twentieth Century enthused about the light in St Ives for good reason and the habitat is sub-tropical in many places in Cornwall.
On the day we visited, as you can see from the photos, we were lucky enough to have sun, flora, beautiful light and amazing colours.
It has later inspired these three designs as a memory of this place.
This is the last of my holiday snaps and my favourite place of the trip (that maybe why I has so many to sort through and edit!)
This is the The Royal Alcazar palace in Seville. And every inch of it was beautiful.
Every turn revealed wonderfully patterned tiles or intricately carved facades, beautiful water features or lush gardening.
It began as a Moorish fort in 913. Subsequent monarchs have added to it since until it has become the beautiful palace that it is today showing the influence of Arab, Medieval, Renaissance and Baroque styles.(Oh get me! I did reference the guide book there!)
The Alcazar Palace has been lived in by most of the main kings and queens of Spanish history.
The tiles were awesome and I have a hundred photos to use for future design reference.
I wish you could smell the orange trees at this point.
I’ve also been looking at the work of the artist Mark Hearld, particularly the way he uses collage to capture scenes.
I had originally thought of painting from some of my photographs but the architecture is very intricate.
Instead I opted to have a play with collaging hand painted papers instead.
Which was a fun way to record the moment for now.
Been playing around with pattern designs inspired by some of my holiday photo’s.
I have found it really refreshing to abstract shapes and just use blocks and lines to resemble an idea.
I love how unknown corners can throw up colour combinations.
On another note, I really need your help – please head over here and help me answer this question – thank you.x
I love walking foreign streets with camera in hand (and good weather) stopping to rest wherever a nice cafe presents itself.
If you asked me to walk across Birmingham in the same way I probably wouldn’t be interested because it’s the newness of an unknown culture and geography that is attractive.
I liked seeing people’s roof garden’s, watch them feeding their caged birds, seeing them take their children out to play in the communal playgrounds.
I’m a sucker for an old crumbly plastered wall, an ornate door knocker, any decorative detailing or chance glimpses of people living their lives at home.
And I see pattern designs everywhere; blocks of colour next to tiny line details and shapes in cement, wood, wire and metal.
Ola. I have been on a little trip this past week. Any guesses where?
We had a holiday in the Algarve, Portugal with a trip across the border to Seville in Spain.
People (especially us Brit’s) did you know, can you remember, that the sun actually shines in other places around the world?! Thick coats and boots are not always necessary. Snow is found on mountain peaks not driveways and pavements! It’s a revelation.
Apart from some welcome rays of sun to lighten the mood, it was refreshing to get away and see some new sights and colours and soak up some inspiration.
I love mooching around foreign shops, anything from hardware stores to fancy pants ones. However nothing came home from the Spanish dress shop you’ll be relieved to hear!
There was one very desirable shop full of gorgeous packages. But Ryan air baggage allowance meant I had to content myself with photographs.
I love wandering streets abroad because when places are unfamiliar, everything is usually a welcome surprise and Seville was full of lovely tiled street names or religious icons.
″A traveler without observation is a bird without wings.” Moslih Eddin Saadi
I love this quote because it reminds me to actually come home and work from the hundreds of photos that got taken and to feed off the inspiration that new sights have brought before it’s dissipated and forgotten. So that’s what I’m up to this week.
Is it too soon to say that ‘it’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas’? I know it’s still only November!
We had our first taste of the spirit of things for this year by popping down the motorway to the Gloucester Quays Victorian Christmas Market yesterday.
There’s nothing like hot sugared donuts and hot chocolate.
At this market the stall holders make a particular effort to dress up in Victorian costume and there are Victorian reenacter’s wandering around and acting up and bringing a real spirit of occasion.
Add in a brass band ( a hilarious Scout/Brownie choir where not one child was trying to sing) and some twinkly lights and I feel the stirrings of excitement for the festive season.
I was just doing some housekeeping on my website, when I came across these photo’s I’d taken when in Paris, made into a blog post and then forgotten to show you. Well there was a lot of visual goodness to share following that sweet little trip, so it’s no wonder.
Paris is full of exquisite window displays but the ones in Fragonard really caught my eye – I definitely quickened my pace toward the shop door as if magnetised.
It looked to me like a Parisian version of Anthropologie…
… as there was lots of embroidery, ethnic inspired clothes and quirky interior pieces.
I took this photo as a reminder to have a go at this myself. Have I yet? Have I heck. Should have just bought some!
I had a hard time leaving without buying lots of desirable but not needed items. Mr L bought me some Violet eau de toilette – now I wonder if he thought that was desirable or a necessity – thinking about it maybe he was dropping a hint ;0
I know it’s summer when the gadding starts.
Not even heavy constant rain can spoil good gadding.
The gadding begins as my birthday comes; with my friends following shortly after.
Good gadding can be had when the music in the car is great (Mystery Jets, Beach House) and you happen unexpectedly upon the most fabulous vintage shop. Throw in some fabric (old or new) beautiful scenery, lots of laughs and a french bistro and the day is complete.
This gadding took place in the Peak District which is Mr Darcy country, I think…(I’m sure you’ll tell me if I’m wrong.)
BTW – My gadding services are for hire at favourable rates but I charge expenses!
Hello again! I did not mean to be gone for so long. Nor did I mean to post twice about my cards (an error in the scheduling process-eek) but thank you for your hip-hooray’s and kind words of support.
I nipped off on a little mini-break (ala Bridget Jones!) to one of my favourite places St Ives, Cornwall. For those not in the know (or country) it’s on the North tip of the South coast and it’s famous for its artists in the 20′s Alfred Wallis, Ben Nicholson, Christopher Wood and Naum Gabo and it’s potters and sculptors like Barbara Hepworth and Bernard Leach.
View from our window.
We enjoyed mad weather like everyone else in Britain at the moment; the full range of mist, drizzle, sunshine and showers.
But it didn’t spoil things in any way because the scenery is always gorgeous whatever the weather and the town is busting with galleries, shops and places to eat and drink not to mention the wonderful Tate gallery.
There was lots of wildlife – mainly these noisy creatures on the look out for pieces of a Cornish pasty!
But we were also lucky enough to see a seal and her pup come in really close to shore.
This gives you an idea how close. I think she was enticed by something that the children were crabbing with on the harbour side. She stayed for ages and gave us great photo’s like a celebrity seal on the red carpet!
It’s always exciting to unexpectedly see an animal in its natural habitat.
But not these ones – nice colours but too aggressive and big for my liking. Oh, and noisy at night too.
The Island area of St Ives was full of wild plants and flowers all enhanced by the beautiful backdrop of turquoise sea.
And did I say there were a few seagulls around ? I think this one got tired of me stalking along after it!
We also went to Barbara Hepworth’s sculpture garden and the Tate so once I’ve sorted through the photos I’ll come back and show you.