Happy New Year – 2017

“January is the quietest month in the garden… But just because it looks quiet doesn’t mean nothing is happening.  The soil, open to the sky, absorbs the pure rainfall … preparing it to welcome the seeds and bare roots to come. “

Rosalie Muller Wright, Editor of Sunset magazine.

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8 months away from this blog space, and it’s too easy to feel like nothing tangible is happening, or hasn’t done for a while.  Actually so much has happened (in some ways, too much)…and IS happening, & I really don’t know where to start?!

We’ve had family loss, love, birth (our gorgeous nephew) and marriage (my sister and then best friend…hurrah, I got to be bridesmaid twice!) all in a matter of months. It’s been busy to say the least…

So my biggest wish for 2017 is calm; time to heal, nourish and to enjoy everything we’ve created up until now.

That, and we’d love to share with you all about our simmering kitchen extension. It’s been a year in the planning, and we’re just at that scary stressful stage; all in and nothing to show for it!

But that’s all set to change in the coming weeks.

I’ll nip back to share inspirations, plans and of course some more recent pics of the rest of our home; albeit all shifted around to accommodate a ridiculous amount of insulation boards (Mr T went ahead and ordered pretty much ALL the building materials pre-January to avoid the price hikes; I’m just so grateful he has a good relationship with our local builders merchants and they’ve agreed to hold onto most of it until needed!)

So, until then…

Be gentle on yourself; it’s January, and (for this hemisphere at least) it’s quite naturally the time to hunker, hygge and hang low.

Just remember…

..just because it looks quiet doesn’t mean nothing is happening.

Love J x

 

 

Claire Cockayne ~ Sunflower Series {preview}

That feeling when you walk into someone’s home and your eye can’t help but be drawn directly to the artwork on the walls…


So it was in artist Claire Cockayne’s home, when she invited me round for coffee this morning.

I’ve known Claire for a couple of years; we bump into each other around town or walking the dogs, and you know you’ve found a kindred spirit when they arrive to see you with an armful of garden trimmings…

 “because I know you’ll make something beautiful out of them” {click here for link to what I created}.

Glancing around her kitchen, while she warmed milk on the stove, I couldn’t help but smile at all the happy-making art she’s carefully curated; many of the pieces by artist friends, she has an infectious laugh and a story about all of them…and that same sense of joy is captured in her own pieces.

Claire has an aesthetic so organically beautiful, an incredible eye for colour, and like me, she’s passionate about the evolving beauty in the natural world around us; it’s a clear influence in her ever expanding portfolio of work.

Claire was formally trained in Liverpool & London, and has been exhibiting all over the UK for the past two decades… So I was thrilled to hear that throughout May she’ll be sharing her work here, in Ely.

Ahead of her debut at the Old Fire Engine House Gallery , I couldn’t resist a preview of her ‘Sunflower Series’; generously she allowed me to sneak a few shots here of some of the finished pieces in her studio this morning:


  
I asked Claire to share some her inspiration behind the ‘Sunflower Series’;

I was inspired by a summer’s drive through France. Arrested by the sudden sight of field upon field of sunflowers…

Such was the impact, we stopped the car & spent an hour taking it in & snapping away…

I loved the contrast of green alpine countryside & bright yellow sunflowers.

The so-called Sunflower series is searching to capture that moment of sheer joy!

Claire will be exhibiting on the ground floor of the Old Fire Engine House gallery from Friday 6th May until 29th May 2016. I do hope you can pop along for a chance to buy something joy-making for your walls.


If you can’t come along in person – you can find Claire’s website here.

Jess x

My Monday mood board ~ get your craft on!

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It’s been an inspiring start on Instagram this week…I’m not sure if it’s the brisk chill in the air, the sudden flurry of snow yesterday, or just a general handmade vibe…but it seems everyone’s getting their craft on! 

Our #mymondaymoodboard gallery was bursting with floral loveliness & creative craftiness….

So I couldn’t resist picking this gorgeous image {if only for the cute tape measure!} from Tina @alltomkerstin 

 

http://instagram.com/alltomkerstin
image credit ~ Tina @alltomkerstin
 
I’m always so impressed to see home made garments, so I popped over to Tina’s blog to see what else she’s been making, and {despite not understanding the language} was completely taken by her photos {her bedroom is light bright loveliness} & this gorgeous crochet iPad cover is just perfect!

 

crochet ipad cover
image credit ~ Tina @alltomkerstin
  
crochet ipad
image credit ~ Tina @alltomkerstin
  
crochet ipad
image credit ~ Tina @alltomkerstin
 
Such a pretty colour palette! 

We’re in the process of moving Lily into her new room & this has me thinking soft muted tones & perhaps trying my hand at a few handmade items…not that I’ve ever even tried crochet?!*

So thank you Tina & everyone else for playing along with our tag. If you’d like to find out more, pop over to @mymondaymoodboard on Instagram.

Have a lovely rest of the week, 

Jess x

* I’ll be writing a separate post about it soon, but if you’re into crochet, then you must check out this new website: Crochyay Boxes

I’m so excited by it…mainly because it’s the brainchild of my wonderful #mymondaymoodboard co-host Lucy! She’s such a talented lady & has thrown passion & brilliance into the world of crochet…hurrah!  

Styling the seasons – April 2016

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Brrrrrr…can you believe it’s the last week of April and it’s still very much blankets on the sofa, hot water bottles in bed and the heating switch being {secretly} flicked on! Continue reading

My Monday Mood Board ~ welcoming light

Hello friends,

Amongst many others, it was this beautiful, light loving image that caught my eye in the #mymondaymoodboard gallery this week {click link to check it out on Instagram}

 

delicate light
image credit ~ Irin @rin__san on instagram

Continue reading