Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Instagrannies Hit The Knit & Stitch Show

Like many bloggers I have become addicted to Instagram.  I love how quick and easy it is and how I am able to use it on the go.  Like blogging it has put me in touch with so many lovely ladies so when I see that Erin @coffee_kisses was arranging a big Instagram meet up at the Knit & Stitch Show in London on Saturday I was keen to go along so that I could meet all these wonderful people.

I'm so glad I went, I had a brilliant day and it was amazing meeting so many lovely, lovely ladies some of whom are bloggers too.  Ashley from Country Rose, Nicki from Homebird, LissyLou from Lissy Lou & The Two Little Boys, Gemma from Musings Of A Gem, Julie from Pretty Little Jewels, Cuckoo from Tales From Cuckoo Land, Sarah from Shabby Chic Sarah, Kmmms from Things Learnt The Hard Way, plus Gemma, Celeste, Kate & Dawn.  Phew I didn't think that list would ever end ha ha.  Okay so it turns out from that list that a lot of us are also bloggers!

We had to give Cuckoo's pose a try.  Rock On!

It felt so surreal, it literally was like spending a day with celebrities.

Even Gem from Treasures From The Cherry Tree was with us in spirit, well in the form of Cuckoo's trolley.  She has nicknamed it Gem as it was Gemma who had bought it for her :)  I'm just a bit gutted she wasn't there in person, I would love to meet her.

 We all had a great day and are already talking about another meet up.  Personally I can't wait.  The one down side of the day was that we didn't get much time to talk.  Hopefully the next meet up will allow more time for that.

So the show itself.  The knitted village was on display.  It seemed to have grown since the last time I saw it in March at the Stitch & Craft Show, but it is still looking rather fab.  it is very clever how it has all come together.

I also loved checking out some of the cross stitch on display at Mr X's stand.  The car door above it just amazing.  Holes had been drilled into the car door and the pattern was cross stitched in.  the same with the door below.  The words were all made up with cross stitch. 

As well as the show and obviously the great company I also loved the venue.  It was so pretty.  I've never been before.

I was mesmerised by this stained glass window.  It is beautiful.  The grounds were very pretty too, although I didn't get to see much of them so I am going to have to go back to get a proper look that's for sure.

And one last thing that can;t go without a mention are the views.  WOW.

You can literally see right across London.  It was a brilliant view.

I just want to say again thank you so much ladies for a superb day.  It was great getting to finally meet you all and may this be the first of many meet ups in the future :)

~ Gem x

P.S I did buy a few things from the show but I will share those with you another time

Monday, 15 October 2012

Floristry College Week 4

Last week we did another hand tied arrangement.  This time using the spiralled stems technique.

To begin with I really couldn't get my head around it but as soon as I started adding various flowers and foliage it all seemed to fall into place.

I ended up with a very achy hand at the end of it though, trying to hold the arrangement whilst adding more flowers and making sure I am adding them so that the stems are all spiralling round the same way.

I loved the colours we used, very autumnal, it made me think of Halloween as I was doing it.  That can never be a bad ting.  I love Halloween.

We practised wrapping with cellophane again, this time we were taught how to do an aqua pack, where you have the water at the bottom of the cellophane.  I'm sure I will be using this in future, it's a handy skill to know.

The flowers are all lasting really well, at least 2 weeks.  It's a case of finding a space to display them all.  But lovely being surrounded by flowers all the time.

Love Gem x x x x 

Sunday, 14 October 2012

Manchester & The Sugar Junction Tea Room

Last Friday me and James took the train up to Manchester.  He was going for work, his beer was going to be at a show up there.  I'd never been to Manchester before so decided to go along for a little adventure.

At times as we were wandering the streets I felt as though I was in an American city, at other times London.  It had so many similarities to other places I had visited before yet at other times it was like no other place I had visited before. 

We did a spot of window shopping at the Arndale Centre.

I love Next home ware window displays at the best of time, but Christmas well that just takes it to a whole new level :)

And wandered round the grounds of the Cathedral.

We even spotted a gold post box.  I've not seen one of these yet so was pretty pleased to come across one, however thought it would have been nice to have had some kind of plaque to indicate who it had been painted gold for and what event they had won gold in, but that's just my thoughts on it.

Our evening was spent at the Victoria Baths.  It is an amazing venue to hold an event, although slightly creepy.  It's an old leisure centre, and the beer festival and seminars were held in the empty swimming pools, it did feel a little odd.  All around the outside of the pools stood the original changing rooms / cubicles, it all looked very vintage.  The lighting was fairly dim so I didn't manage to get any good photos of the venue but you can check out their website if you want to take a look at it.

I even got to make my own candy floss.  As you can see I was pretty excited about this part.  Sorry about the picture being a bit grainy, this one was taken with Instagram.

On Saturday we made a visit to the Sugar Junction Tea Rooms.  I was in heaven.  It truly was an amazing place.  It was really busy so I didn't take any photos of inside the tea room but if I told you that while we were there Sue Perkins made a visit for her lunch, I'm sure you would get what an amazing place this really is.  If ever you are in Manchester you have to pay this place a visit.  It is by far the best Tea Room i have ever been too.

I loved the decor, I loved the china, I loved the cream tea, I loved the jazz style music, and the staff were fantastic.  If that doesn't say enough then honestly no words can.

After all that excitement it was time to come back home.  I enjoyed Manchester.  I don't know whether I would go back.  I kind of feel like I managed to do everything I wanted to do although no doubt I will discover something else some day, so who knows.

Love Gem x x x x

Wednesday, 10 October 2012

Floristry College Week 2 & 3

I was hoping to have caught up with everything this week but instead I've been fighting the cold that seems to be currently sweeping the nation, and what a beauty it is too.

Just so I don't get too far behind with my posts, I thought I'd share my Instagram pictures from my floristry arrangements I created at college both last week and the week before.

Week 2
A hand tied arrangement.

First of all we tried cone wrapping a small arrangement.

Then went for something bigger to wrap in cellophane.

Complete with tissue paper and a hand made bow.

This is what the arrangement looked like once I took it out of the cellophane and put it into a vase, or in this case a milk churn from Ikea.

Week 3
Symmetrical arrangement.

I am really loving having lots of flowers about the place.  They smell gorgeous (when I can smell them) and it really brightens the place up which is great on these dull and dreary days we have been having recently.  I'm not a fan of the drizzly weather, I much prefer bright and sunny autumn days :)

Love Gem x x x

Wednesday, 3 October 2012

Bodiam Castle

In my last post I had said how I was wanting to tell you about an afternoon spent at Bodiam Castle, I wrote that a week ago :s  this day out feels like ages ago, in a way it kinda was.  It was almost 2 weeks ago.

We picked a perfect day to visit as the sun was shinning, the weather was glorious (shame I can't say that about the current weather but still).

We'd had no intentions of visiting before but seeing as we had our annual membership with the National Trust it made sense to make the most of it while we have it.  Plus it's a free day out, now that is a bonus.

The grounds were stunning.  We had a really lovely walk around the outside of the castle.  Although there were lots of people around, it didn't feel busy.  there was plenty of space to roam around.

Even the ducks came to say hello.

This just shows the enormity of this place, it was pretty big.

There was so much to look at.  I loved looking at all the inscriptions in the stone walls.  It makes you wonder who must have wrote them all those years ago and what their story might have been.

This was one of my favourite photos of the day.  It's James looking out at the moat.  There were loads of carp swimming around, they were huge.

I didn't take as many photos of the inside of the castle as I did of the outside.  I just found the outside so much more nicer to photograph.  I'm not sure what that says about me but there it is, I said it.

The views were pretty stunning too.  Literally from every point you looked out from a beautiful view of the countryside was to be seen.

A castle would never have been my choice of a day out had it not been for our National Trust membership, but you know what I really enjoyed it.  We had a lovely day out.  And since we have been visiting these places I've been saying to James "we really should do this more often"  Well we have until June to make the most of it, and make the most of it we will.

Love Gem x x x x