Monday, 29 September 2014

My photo shoot with Millinery by Jen

Handmade silk flower
A couple of weekends ago I had the most fun day playing photographer on a photo shoot. It was the first photo shoot that I have ever done, as in one where it would be beneficial to get some decent, usable pictures by the end of it! I was using a much fancier camera than I normally use and when I got over being scared of breaking it I enjoyed playing the part of a paparazzo.

Handmade bead and sequin star band
 For those who know me it may come as a surprise that it didn't come naturally to direct the lovely model, I felt like I was being a right bossy pants. However, after a while, I got over that and was full of 'turn', 'twirl', 'look down', 'tilt head', 'smile', 'don't smile' etc! It was really interesting to me to find out ways for the camera, the model and the photographer to bring out the best in the glorious items which were being snapped. I really wanted to try and do them justice but I think that they speak for themselves.

Have you guessed what I was taking pictures of? There have been lots of clues!

Royal blue beret with bow trim
Yep! Hats!! Lots and lots of glorious handmade hats. I think this beret should be snapped up by Kate Middleton.

Red, white and blue
A patriotic number! Perfect for Jubilees, high days and holidays.

Breakfast at Tiffany's
The most fabulous shape. The missing piece to complete your New Look, assuming you already have a Dior Bar suit.

Navy cloche with flower
Super stylish and time period appropriate for this season of Downton Abbey. I love that programme. It is a shame that I hadn't been told before this photo shoot that I must go upstairs to take off my hat as Lady Mary does.

Felt leaves and a fabric covered button.
So. I bet you want to know why I was taking these pictures, and more importantly, who has made all these gorgeous hats?

Red flower with spotty button
Here she is! The very talented Jen! If you are in a hat styling fix you need to call her. Seriously. She knows how to arrange it on your head just so, so that both you and the hat look great. Much better than my general plonk it on and hope for the best approach.

My auntie and I dancing at my wedding
I got married nearly two years ago and my lovely friend Jen offered to make me a wedding hat. I was really touched and snapped up the offer and I received the most beautiful hat for my wedding day. It is made from pleated purple velvet and it has 3 vintage pearl buttons nestled in the pleats. There are three white feathers in a knot of braid and the same purple and gold braid trims the hat. I absolutely love it. Jen put it on a comb for me so that I could ram it into my hair (told you I wasn't gifted in hat styling) and it stayed put throughout the service, the reception and some mighty strenuous ceilidh dancing. My shoes couldn't hack it and had to come off but that wonderful hat had no such problems.

My wedding hat and bag
Here it is in close up and next to it is a bag that was a surprise gift. Jen kindly made me a vintage style bag using the same fabric and trim which was the perfect size and went beautifully with my dress.

Green tweed with a purple velvet bow
After four years studying millinery and having a life long love of hats Jen has decided to let her hats out into the world. Hooray! Our photo shoot provided images for her Etsy shop. Feel free to head over and check it out.

Navy heart pill box with felt bird
This heart shape is so cute and is a more unusual take on the traditional pill box shape.

Navy braid swirl.
A really pretty, classic look.

Purple beret
I love the shape and the colour of this purple beret. It even looks good from the back!

Red roses
Handmade ribbon roses. I think this hat would suit all manner of occasions.

I think I took over 300 photos, made Jen do lots of posing, drank several cups of tea, ate some tasty cake and it really was a fun day. I enjoyed getting to look at all the hats up close and looking at the shapes, trims and decorations in detail. If you want to keep up with Jen's adventures in hat making you can find her here.

Sunday, 21 September 2014

Seven snaps for seven days - weeks thirty seven and thirty eight

I have put these two weeks together as I haven't taken many photos recently. I am not sure why, it seems that either nothing was very inspiring or I missed my opportunity. Here are the ones that I did manage to take.

Having fun playing with my niece. She is very interested in feet at the moment!

A lovely sunny dog walk with my sister and my niece.

Having lots of fun doing a photo shoot with a friend for secret projects that we are working on. All will be revealed soon!

I love seeing the leaves starting to change colour. So many lovely colours on this creeper.

I made apple and blueberry crumble using apples from the tree in our garden. I love using this vintage Pyrex dish.

Loss is Eternal - a sand sculpture at my local Town Hall that commemorates the First World War.

Soothing mint tea in some cheerful pottery.

Lazy Sunday afternoon sofa nest with the papers, magazines, a book and a cuppa!

Thursday, 18 September 2014

Giveaway winner!

Thank you to everyone who entered my giveaway, both on my blog and on my Facebook page when they couldn't work the blog comments.

I wrote everyones name on a scrap of paper, folded them up and put them in a bag.

Do you like my bag? I made it when I was about seven! It is an applique mushroom in case you can't tell! I keep my embroidery threads in it usually.

I gave the bag a good shake and picked out the winner. I did a little drum roll in my head.

The winner is Mim! Well done! 

Please email your details to me at and I will get everything packed up and posted to you.

Thursday, 11 September 2014

Seven snaps for seven days - thirty six

Yummy and reasonably healthy pudding - raspberries, Greek yogurt, walnuts and a drizzle of honey.

Great display in a local shop window, animated rodents and Yorkshire Soap!

Excuse this one feet phobes, my niece and I!

Wearing my lovely cherry brooch that my mum crocheted for me.

The first apple harvest of the season from the tree in our garden.

Sunday afternoon at knitting group, this pattern made me laugh and I thought I would give it a go.

Don't forget to enter my 100th post giveaway!

Monday, 8 September 2014

My 100th post giveaway!

I am very excited to have reached my 100th blog post; it feels like quite a milestone. I am enjoying myself enormously writing this blog, having a place to explore all the things that are of interest to me.What is really lovely is that often they are of interest to other people too. Like every blogger, when I wrote my first few posts I was not sure if they would be read by anyone other than me, or my mum and dad - thanks mum and dad! So it is great to find other people reading and commenting, I am really liking this getting to know people through comments and chats. It turns out that blogging is really rather sociable and I like it! So, as a thank you for sticking around so far, I thought I would have a giveaway and my 100th post seems like the perfect opportunity.

In the background there is a beautifully embroidered vintage tray cloth and on top of that is a pretty floral handkerchief. To the right is a sleep mask.

Here is a close up of the lovely embroidered baskets of flowers and the bunches of flowers on the handkerchief.

The sleep mask is lovingly handmade by me from a 1950's pattern. The reverse of the mask is navy cotton with tiny white polka dots.

I thought that there needed to be a selection of knitting patterns.

Lots of great options here and time to make them before the cold weather comes!

This pretty lacy top and the next three pictures are from the Needlewoman and Needlecraft magazine.

The next two patterns are found in the Woman's Owen knitting booklet for 'you and him'!

This is how you can enter:

1. Leave me a comment at the end of this post.

2. Follow this blog on Bloglovin and leave me a comment at the end of this post to tell me that you have done so.

3. Like my Facebook page and leave me a comment at the end of this post to tell me that you have done so.

You are welcome to do all three things.

The giveaway will close at midnight on the 14th September. I will put all the entries in a hat and draw the winner. I am happy to post worldwide.

Good Luck!

Tuesday, 2 September 2014

Seven snaps for seven days - thirty five

Just the six this week.

Part of a water feature in Manchester which has lots of sculptures of natural forms under the water.

Starting the rib of the sleeves of the cardigan.

Admiring my friend's tea cosy; having tea and biscuits whilst watching the Great British Bake Off.

I bought some 1930's needlework magazines, full of fantastic fashions.

I also bought some 1940's knitting books, packed full of great knits.

Having a fun, entertaining evening looking after our friends' son and puppy.