Sunday, 23 June 2013

an exciting project

Just as Petite Violette is winding down for the summer months, so too is this exciting project Grant and I have been working on for the last 6 or 7 months. We started renovating the attic space above our apartment in December, and hopefully we can move up there in the next 4 - 5 weeks.

It's been a huge project - we completely gutted the space and ripped out a bad 80s renovation that gave absolutely no hint about the beautiful old beams and brick walls that were hidden behind dodgy walls and low ceilings.  We can't wait till it's finished and even though it's fun to choose tiles, paint, kitchen cabinets, etc, it will be a huge relief once it's over!

Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Here are some cut-outs I did for the course 
I am teaching in August.
I sent one to each attendee with their name....
We will be doing some paper cutting at Briancon.
I hope they will all find it as fun as I do.

Monday, 17 June 2013


Late last year I went to Viv's Needlecase workshop at Weston Hall.

As you may recall, I am a massive fan of Hens Teeth - glorious gentle stitching - and had already been on
a couple of the Haberdashery Brooch classes given by Viv.  On the second brooch class I made brooches out of haberdashery cards, buttons etc like this one:

So when it came to making needlecases - rather than lots of sewing - i am not a great sewist and cheat whenever I can, I decided to to use some bits and pieces of paper stuff I had.  When I was in France a couple of years ago I bought an old Lotto set, including lovely old cards - very damp and not a little smelly but rather fabulous once dried out and put in a container with a scented sachet and left for a while.

I love the needlecases Viv makes with old battered quilts - the loveliest colours and beautiful washed and worn - so, I decided to stick a piece of quilt onto the Lotto card, fixed in a bit of ribbon to tie it as I went and here is the result:
Next in line was a lovely little booklet with a pretty picture on the cover that I bought last year, I pulled out the innards of the booklet, stitched a piece of quilt to it using blanket stitch - get me - included the ties as I went - you can see the inside above and here is the cover:
The tie on this one is a piece of bias binding dipped in tea which came unfurled, but I think it makes a nifty little wrap around tie!  Just had time to make a third! Made from two out of a set of mats also bought last
year in France, both the centre circles inside have a quilted circle attached and the mats are stitched together at one side and tied with a ribbon at the other.
Taken together, a fine days workshop was had by all and lots produced in a short time!
 To see what I made at the second needlecase workshop - a magical chatelaine that I think is one of the finest things Ive every made! - please check out tinkeringbythesea.blogspot

Many thanks to Viv for the use of some of her lovely photographs.

Love to All

Wednesday, 12 June 2013


Hello Lovelies!

Sorry to be absent for so long - but life is much more hectic now and time for creativity is severely

Just recently, I wanted to make changes to the sitting room, which was my sister Lynda's and which adjoins
the kitchen diner (all of which joined up is a huge L shape).  For many reasons I needed to make it my
own again, and, as I cant spare the time for a full paint job I got rid of the suite, bought some Ercol frames moved some of the bulkier furniture out of the room and did a bit of upholstery.  I'm also on with shelving so that it can temporarily double as a studio.

The frames are were in good shape, and, only £100.00 - but came with no cushions.  As a new set from
Ercol is over £350.00 I bought foam blocks, made a pattern then set about the foam with a carving knife!
Fair enough it is the crude but effective method, it did, however, get the job done.  I went to Abakhan for
the fabric, 3 different linens which I bought by weight, on offer 50% off cost me only £38.00.  The foam
was £60.00 so the whole suite done came in at around £200.00.

I made box cushions using the envelope method so no zips - fairly tricky to sew too.  The foam is a bit unwieldy to get in and out of the covers but perseverance pays off! Though I am definitely from the 'make it have it' school of upholsterers I am quite pleased with the end result!

My little doggies, Bert & Daisy are also quite fond of the results!


Monday, 10 June 2013

The Moth Ball

hello dear pantry Violets, wondering how you are all doing, and feeling bad about not posting anything, not even anything boring! I am madly illustrating stories for my Ragtales company which is slowly growing thanks to my 2 sales partners...have been on a childrens book writing course and have re written the story of version is about Molly the clothes moth who is very sad and drab and hates eating cardigans and longs to go to the nightly Moth is a rough illustration.....xx