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Daily Moleskine Pages. November 2018

Last month in my Moleskine daily planner, I stuck stickers, found leaves, spray painted through old doilies, sketched hilarious self portraits and tested new supplies.

Only one month left and we are almost halfway through it!

Happy Monday x

Books I like and some on my wish list!

Here are some books that I have borrowed from the library and love and a couple which I have not seen inside but I really really want to!

Ottolenghi Simple This is a book full of really interesting and delicious sounding recipes like ‘Thai sticky rice with crispy ginger, chile and peanuts’ or ‘Sweet potato mash with lime salsa’ which also are completely doable. The ingredients are not a mystery and the method is straightforward.

Breakfast with Beatrice I love me a cook book or even better a pile of cookbooks, even though they are huge and heavy to carry home, I don’t even care! This one also has a beautiful cover (yes, I do judge books by the cover). ‘Walnut pear coffee cake’ and a delicious sounding ‘Belgian waffle’ recipe are on my ‘to bake’ list. Some more unusual ingredients in this one, but nothing inaccessible.

Smithsonian Flora I have not clapped eyes on this book but I have seen a couple of peeks on the interwebs and it looks so gorgeous I need to see it!

Oliver Jeffers: The Working Mind and Drawing Hand Another one I have not had the pleasure of holding in my hands, but it sounds so interesting and I am a big fan of Oliver Jeffers.

Polka Dot Parade A Book about Bill Cunningham Picture books have my heart, I just love them and this one is about the late Bill Cunningham which makes it a winner in my view. The illustrations are by the amazing Masha D’Yans who is one of my favourite artists,  her work is gorgeous and inspiring which is exactly what this book is.

Frida Kahlo An Illustrated Life A beautiful beautiful book which is written in the first person and full of gorgeous and some brutal illustrations which tell the story of Frida Kahlo perfectly.

A Big Important Art Book Now with Women The new book from the Jealous Curator Danielle Krysa is all of the things, it is interesting and inspiring and gets you to work on your own art.  It is split into chapters like ‘Capture Childhood’  and ‘Add a Wink’ which each feature a selection of artists and a page of projects for the reader to work on their own art practice.  I think it is kind of a genius book.

The Art of the Fold This is another on I have not actually seen but boy do I want to grab this one and make some books and zines.  Hand made books are a recent pleasure in my life and they are the best.  Making a journal or a zine and then filling it up is so rewarding.

What books have you been enjoying or are on your wish list?

Happy Thursday x

Get Messy Art Journal Season of Freedom Beginnings

The new season in the art journaling community of Get Messy is the Season of Freedom.  What a perfect way to end the year and begin the next, the freedom to create and create what you want!

Of course there will be prompts and tutorials to keep us all inspired and working in our art journals, but they will all be freeing (see what I did there!) and full of ideas.

I have made my little journal using book rings which hold together a variety of vintage envelopes, recipe cards and plain postcards.  It is higgledy piggledy and that is how I like it.

Some pages have been started and maybe finished, I will see where the season takes me.

More information on Get Messy can be found here.

Happy Friday x

Taking Stock on my Birthday November 2018

A stock take on my birthday, my 49th year, last one before I make half a century.  Bloody hell, that makes me sound like an ancient relic!  Ha ha, good job I don’t feel like one! Credit to Pip at Meet me at Mikes for the Taking Stock concept, thanks Pip.

Here is what I am up to tonight and today.

Making : Christmas cake

Cooking : Nothing, it’s my birthday!

Drinking : Gin and tonic

Reading: ‘Unsheltered’ by Barbara Kingsolver

Wanting: More reading time

Looking: At the light disappear as the sun goes down

Playing: The ‘La La Land’ soundtrack, I can’t help myself!

Deciding: Which ramen to order for dinner

Wishing: I could visit all of my family for my birthday and eat cake with them

Enjoying: Wearing scarves, I like winter clothes

Waiting: To go the the gym, yes, on my birthday I still go to class

Liking: Trying new art supplies

Wondering: If I will get used to the massive sumi brushes I just got

Loving: Learning all the new things

Pondering: My new art journal for Kasia Avery’s Advent calendar class in December

Considering: New gloves

Buying: A backdrop for photos and videos

Watching: ‘The Crown’, I know, I am late to the party

Hoping: The sun will come out and give us blue skies tomorrow

Marvelling: At how cold it can get how quickly

Cringing: At negative people

Needing: A video on sumi brushes, I need some tips

Questioning: How many Celebration chocolates I have eaten today

Smelling: Rose perfume

Wearing: Gym clothes

Following: My muse

Noticing: The time is whizzing by today

Knowing: Art and exercise are my soul feeders

Thinking: About what to buy people for Christmas

Admiring: Organized folk

Sorting: Magazine cuttings for art journaling

Getting: Birthday cards-yay!

Bookmarking: Magazines because I start to read them and then forget where I got to!

Coveting: Warm boots

Disliking: Socks which go under my feet in my boots

Opening: Birthday presents!

Giggling: At the radio

Feeling: Ready

Snacking: On ‘Celebrations’ chocolates

Helping: Rake leaves

Hearing: Quiet

If you would like to take some stock of your own, here is a blank list.

Making :

Cooking :

Drinking :







































Happy Monday x


Super Saturday – The Creating Edition.

Are you a creative person? I bet you are.  Creativity is in the air at this time of year, from baking a batch of cookies to choosing Christmas cards all the way to making the cards yourself featuring your own art or photography.  All creative and all satisfying.

Currently I have a loaf of bread in the oven with 15 minutes to go until it is baked and I am all ready to go to a sweaty cardio/strength class at the gym, the bread I created (ok, mixed up and baked, which counts right?) and the gym session will dust my cobwebs off and get my brain moving as much as my body.  

Later I need to work on my Christmas cards and make a new art journal for a December daily project and make a Christmas cake!  

This month in the creative department, I have been hand carving some stamps, I have a small collection of little Christmas trees which I am using on my cards.  I also made a very simple stamp which resembles birch tree trunks in a row or a forest.  As I made the stamp of these I wanted to have a go at a stenci with the same effect.  The result is one I like but does not really resemble tree trunks, more like wonky stripes which I am totally ok with.  My craft knife skills are not the best and making stencils frustrates me as a consequence!  Having said that I will keep using my wonky stripe stencil and continue to enjoy it!

I have just signed up for Kasia Avery’s December Advent Calendar class which provides a prompt a day for the first 24 days of December and a daily video from Kasia to keep us motivated. Kasia is one of those people who makes me want to art journal and create generally, just watching the intro video had me skipping off to find the supplies I need for my December journaling, both to make the actual sketchbook and the supply kit to fill it.

Another class I am currently enjoying is Laura Horn’s watercolour class which I am still working through.  I am enjoying this class because it has made me get my watercolors out and take some time with them.  Something I am guilty of when I am creating, especially in my art journal, is not taking the time.  I won’t allow myself the time to really get into a page or a project because I am too busy listening to the little voice over my shoulder telling me that there must be something more worthwhile I should be doing, why am I spending time on this when there is surely dinner to make or a pile of washing up to do?  I fight this goblin all the time and as a consequence I always seem to be rushing to get creative moments done to move onto the more ‘important’ things. I am aware that I need to spend time to learn and improve and I need to sit my goblin in the corner sometimes to achieve this. Just the act of sitting down with my watercolors has seen me creating new things with them and looking forward to more time with my paints and watercolour paper.

I hope you are creating all the things and having a lovely time doing it.

Happy Saturday x

Daily Moleskine 2018. October pages

I thought I had missed a lot of pages in October, so I was pleasantly surprised that most pages are filled as they should be.

I did drop the ball for a couple of days and they are as blank as unfilled pages!  Nevermind, I carried on regardless.

Lots of pages are covered with inspiration and instruction from Lisa Congdon’s October daily class at Creative Bug which helped keep me going.

October saw lots of piles of rocks once I had made some pebble stamps along with botanicals and some stickers and postcards from my Portland trip.

Happy Thursday x

A day of indigo dyeing.


I was invited to a day of indigo and shibori dyeing and I jumped at the chance as I have always wanted to try shibori with an authentic indigo dye vat.  I got a little over enthusiastic with my dye victims and ended up with a length of voile, 2 yards of light jersey, watercolour paper, natural finish wood beads and an old dictionary.  All heading to the dye pot to see what effect it would have!

First up was the voile which I folded and scrunched and tied around a plastic tube to hopefully end up with a successful shibori dye pattern.  I had two yards of wide fabric so it took a minute to prepare, then into the pot!


First it went this colour


Then it went this colour.  The transitions of the dye as it develops are absolutely beautiful.  I could imagine a watercolour paint set in the colours of indigo dye from almost chartreuse to a deep deep blue.


I gave it a quick swish in some clean water and cut the strings to reveal my masterpiece, not knowing how it was going to turn out.


Ta da!  I could not be happier! My hands are blue and wet and I am having a great time!


Wood beads are soaked and ready to go indigo.


Here are the drying beads on the dictionary which also went for a dunk in the dye.  The book took on dye on some pages and some pages only got a border of colour.  I like the effect and I am looking forward to using some of the blue tinged pages in my art journal.




Once I started dipping the paper into the dye, I was hooked, the effects were stunning and even when they were rinsed in clear water, they didn’t lose any drama.  I dipped a whole collection of large papers, small sheets, concertina books and folded cards into the dye and love the monochrome landscapes which emerged.

What a wonderful experience to work with this dye and be surrounded by creative people to support and encourage the crazy lady who thought pretty much anything would be better once it had been in indigo! I am certainly pleased with all the stuff I dipped and submerged.

Have you used indigo dye or done shibori? Did you love it!?

Happy Monday x