Look what Santa brought me

I must have been quite a good girl this year, for Santa brought me some really lovely things including a cross-stitching starter kit (I will be blogging on this in due course), some rose & violet creams (my favourite chocolates), Gok Wan’s autobiography (I’m intrigued ever since I met him) and the beautiful, soon to be discontinued, flower light designed for habitat by Helena Christensen (I have hankered for one ever since it launched nearly ten years ago).
But one of my favourite gifts by far has to be this hand-knitted, and therefore truly unique, tea cosy. Isn’t it gorgeous? As you might have read in my previous posts, I like to collect tea pots and by virtue of that fact, I have a soft spot for tea cosies too.
This cheerful raspberry cosy was made by Blue Shed Knits and was sold through a lovely contemporary crafts shop in my hometown of Harrogate called The Stalls (again, more on this soon).
If you’d like to get your hands on one like this, you can contact Blue Shed Knits on 07971 087332 or email lizrose01@googlemail.com

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Christmas greetings

This is just a short but sweet post to wish everyone a very merry Christmas and to share a few simple images that sum up my Christmas Eve.
Thanks for your interest, comments and support and I look forward to more blogging with you in 2011. Love, Kathryn.

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The best Christmas present ever….?

I’ve been searching for a Christmas present for my husband for a while now. You know how it is, December ticks on, it’s crazy busy, it snows and you can’t get to the shops for inspiration etc etc and as the big day neared I was starting to panic.
And then I came across Blossom and Bill. Sandra Isaksson is the designer and founder of ISAK, a Scandinavian range of design-led products and the creator of cute couple Blossom and Bill. I discovered this range via fab online store www.hunkydoryhome.com in the UK (whose customer service was brilliant by the way!).
There’s something about this design that just makes you smile, making it perfect for a mug you use everyday. I also think there’s something about this fictional duo that will remind you of someone you know, making it a great present for a partner or another couple. It is available in several different colourways, to include a brunette Blossom and a red-haired Bill with contrasting backgrounds but I fell for this one because I think it looks a bit like me and my husband! Happy Christmas Greig xxx

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A handmade card

Just a quick post to show you this great Christmas card I was given today. My very creative friend made it using last year’s recycled Christmas stamps to create a kind of stained glass window effect. The stamps are simply stuck down on to plain card and then it’s just a case of ruler and black marker. I think religious stamps work better if you want to recreate this look but you could certainly experiment with others. I particularly like the way that the print from the franking machines has added an extra texture and detail to the image. 

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Crafting in the cafe

I’ve always been a fan of Cafe Rouge. Yes, I know it’s a big chain and it’s not that authentically French but it does a great onion soup/Croque Monsieur, it’s really family friendly and I’ve always found the interior design appealing, reassuring, even heartwarming.
On one of our recent visits I noticed that Cafe Rouge had introduced its new Christmas artwork, which is used across the seasonal menus. The design really caught my eye because it was created using the craft known as quilling.
Quilling or paper filigree is an art form that involves the use of strips of paper that are rolled, shaped, and glued together to create decorative designs. The paper is wound around a quill to create a basic coil shape, hence the name quilling. 
The artwork was created by artist Yulia Brodskaya who combines her interests in typography, paper, and highly detailed hand-made craft objects to produce her designs, which have won her international acclaim. 
The precision and detail of the work is incredible and yet the overall effect is so vibrant and fun. I also love the way it uses one of the most traditional forms of craft to present Christmas in a cool and quirky way; it’s a great example of old meets new and in that sense is also perfectly on-brand for Cafe Rouge.
If you want to find out more about quilling and even see video demonstrations of the technique, there’s more info on the website: www.caferouge.co.uk/christmas/quilling

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