Sunday, 25 March 2012

Sold - wooden trinket box.

I sold "Africana" last weekend - this little wooden trinket box which I decorated with Decopatch. I sold it to my Mother, which I think doesn't really count because she is biased about my work - but I'm also sure that she wouldn't spend money on something she didn't really like so that fact balances it out for me! It will be used as a jewellery box by her.

My sister also bought one of my new mini notebooks. She is similar to me in her list-making, and will be using it to keep a record of all the books she reads this year. It's nice to know what use my creations will get, for a change.

My sister bought the green notebook - which comes with a free pencil.

"Africana" - on the right of this photo, is the trinket box sold to my Mother.
I would have not sold anything at all at the craft fair last weekend if it hadn't been for my family, actually - and that's a first for me. Even my Dad bought a yo-yo for my niece, so it was a true family affair. I really appreciated their support on what would otherwise have been a very disheartening day!

Friday, 16 March 2012

Wolds Village Spring Open Exhibition

I recently dropped off my two entries for the Spring Open Exhibition at Wolds Village in Bainton, and had a little mooch around their gift shop too. Keith couldn't resist buying some edibles and I was sorely tempted by a whole range of craft items - not just for me, but for creating things with Matheea, Evie and Charlotte, too. (In case you don't know, Matheea and Evie are my two grand-daughters - well, Keith's really, but since I'm married to him, I regard them as mine. Charlotte is my niece- my sister's daughter.) I also enjoyed looking in the upstairs room of the gift shop, which has lots of antique bits and bobs - there's something almost magical about looking at antiques, I find. It's the thought of "who? where? when?" as you look at an object, and imagine the answers - who owned it previously, where did they live and when did they own it etc.  I think a lot of antique furniture is just so beautiful to look at, too. I don't own any antique furniture but I do like looking at it.

Anyway, the exhibition runs from Friday 16th March to Wednesday 18th April and is held at the Gallery on the Wolds, Wolds Village, Bainton, Nr Driffield, YO25 9EF. If you are in the area or know anyone who is during that time, please pop in - it's free entry and it will be a varied exhibition. Afterwards, why not have a coffee or tea in their popular restaurant or browse in the gift shop?

Here are the two paintings I've entered - I think they are suitably "Spring" like, don't you?

"Colossus of Roads" - acrylic on canvas.
"Anniversary Flowers" - acrylic on canvas.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012


Last night Keith and I were looking forward to a meal out that we'd booked months ago with a Groupon offer - to an Italian Bistro at the other side of Hull. We got showered and ready in good time to leave the house at 7.20 - given that it's a 25minute drive across to Chanterlands Avenue (where Ciao Bistro) is located. Surprisingly for us, the drive across town was remarkably smooth and we arrived on Chants Ave at 7.36pm (I always remember times precisely, it's part of my obsession for lists etc I think) so we were thinking we'd be too early. However, as we approached the venue, we started to realise that we may struggle to find a parking place. 25 minutes later, and two years' worth of screaming and shouting at each other in response to this, we KNEW we were going to have to forego our much-anticipated meal.  Neither of us could believe that there was literally nowhere to park - all the available spaces on the main avenue were taken as well as every inch of space in all the side streets on both sides of the avenue - even along the main road leading up to Chants Ave itself. We decided to abandon the idea so Keith waited outside in the car (with the engine running, he was parked at the edge of a bus stop - the only spare strip of road available at that time) and I went in to explain the situation. "No, I'm not surprised" said the manager when I told him we'd spent 25 minutes driving around looking for a parking spot, "there's a party of four in the corner who were driving around for 40 minutes before they found anywhere. Would you like to make another booking?" "Well, yes, but can you recommend a night when it won't be this bad for parking?" I replied, not hopefully.  "Any night, really, it's just that it's the football tonight so it's really busy"  DOH!!!

That's the trouble with not being remotely interested in football - I never know when our team in Hull are playing, and last night was even worse, apparently, because they were playing a team from Leeds. I have no idea what that means, but it must be important to bring all that extra traffic out in order to try and spoil our evening out!

Anyway, once we'd re-booked, we decided to try somewhere else instead. We were thinking of just going home and raiding the freezer, but because we'd got dressed up (Keith even had his new jeans on) we drove into Cottingham and parked up near a place we thought would be open. Wrong. "Purple Cow" is only open on certain nights - it's mainly used as a cafe during the day, but we've been before when they had a tapas evening and thoroughly enjoyed it! Our problem is we don't go into town or out for meals enough to really have a good knowledge of what's open when and how good it is! So we started to walk back into the centre of Cottingham instead and Keith just happened to spot a neon sign light up in an otherwise empty shop window - advertising "Woksoever". We turned into an arcade and at the end was a chinese restaurant.

We opted for the "allyoucan eat" menu - which was £14.99 each and literally as many dishes, from the starter, main or side dish menu shown here as you liked. We aren't big eaters, so just chose a starter and a main dish each, with rice to accompany it - next time, we will probably just order a selection of starters, however!

I had the sate vegetable skewer for starters, Keith opted for the Chilli Spicy Salted Chicken Wings and we both thought they were delicious. We even enjoyed the bowl of prawn crackers with dipping sauce that arrived before the starters, so knew we were onto a winner here.

For our main dish, we had the Chicken in a Special Satay Sauce with egg fried rice (me) and Chicken Wokever Curry with egg fried rice (Keith). I actually finished all mine - Keith struggled a bit but only left a bit of rice to be fair - and he'd had 4 chicken wings to start with, which is more than a couple of sticks of vegetable, in terms of fulfilment.

The service was speedy, friendly, everything was immaculately clean and the atmosphere was great. We would recommend this place to anyone who (like us, up to last night) has not yet been. Thanks to Hull City for making what we thought would be a really crappy night turn out to be a lovely one instead!

Saturday, 3 March 2012

Colour chart - artistic or anal retentiveness?

I know I can be quite anal in my behaviour at times - I have always liked making lists, keeping notebooks for various things etc. Some people would find it odd, I just think it's perfectly normal to make and keep lists of things. For instance, I have a comprehensive list of every birthday and Christmas present that anyone has ever bought me since I was about 16. So, if you ever wondered what it was - I'm sure I could dig it out for you! This seems to help my memory - I can, for example, remember that a friend (who was my boyfriend at the time) bought me a red covered A4 sketchbook for my 19th birthday. I can even remember some of the sketches I first did in there - of him (Paul Leonard, in case you're wondering), my brother Daniel, and one of Sherry, our German Shepherd dog at that time.

I therefore wonder if this colour chart I've made (along with others that I have but don't happen to have photographed for fear of over stretching your patience every so slightly) is a sign of my well-organised artistic mind or just another symptom of my anal retentiveness. I don't really care either way - just thought I'd share it in case anyone else can relate to it!

I've utilised a cut-off from a piece of mountboard to paint a sample of every brand and type of yellow and green paint that I have in my possession. The only trouble now, is that I need to update this list, as I've since bought more for my different craft works!  I think I shall probably need a larger piece of mount card. I've temporarily misplaced the blue swatch card that I created, but if I find it you may yet see it on here!

Handy reference card, without a doubt. Absolutely necessary for my work? Not really.