24 November 2014

Homemade Winter Wreath

I made a wreath to save myself pennies many years ago but this time it was a reason to use the autumn/winter change of nature as were the intention of wreaths in the past. I had twigs & branches a from a tree that needed to be given a second life and so after many months I decided to cut them up into useable pieces and get crafting a winter wreath for my front door!

I took a wire coat hanger and pushed it out into a circle, then tied like sized branches together and started tying them to the hanger circle. 

I needed some berries and wreath frippery so bought a £1 wreath from Poundland and went to work breaking it up into the bits I wanted from it. 

I also sliced up some clementines and dried them out for 30 mins on 120c (fan oven) to attach around the wreath. After assembling with the help of a glue gun I attached a big tartan bow and a material bow at the top. 

I think this means I can start decorating inside soon!! ❤️

17 November 2014

Design // Headband and Accessories Station

I was recently asked to do a commission, I was shown an example from Pinterest and I said I could do it, only I'd be doing something better that wasn't glue gunning fabric to a kitchen roll. Now thats fine if you want to make that yourself and use it, but people are selling them like that, it's kitchen roll!

So I designed something for the first time, now I've made things from my head before (not literally) but this was a sketched out, mathematical design. It needed a little tweak during production but all in all, I was pretty impressed with the outcome. I'm going to start selling the pattern once I have created a nice tidy PDF for it and written up some instructions that aren't BeccaLingo but whilst I am doing that here is the product. Let me know what you think of it and whether it would solve your hair accessory needs! I will also make to order for anyone that might be interested. My email address can be found in the contact section above.

A thick spring tartan print for durability and staying relevant at whatever age.

Hang anywhere with the ribbon handle.

Detachable pockets for travelling with - just fold, roll and go! 

Headband roll and four detachable pockets for hairbands, slides, clips and pretty bows!

22 September 2014

Autumn Porridge

It's that time of the year where the days are a little cooler and the leaves are falling from the trees, the colours outside are becoming more orange and the sun beams off the river in the early evening. Bicycle rides with a light breeze in your hair, warmer drinks and of course porridge. 

Here is my September porridge recipe:

Porridge oats
7-8 Blueberries
Dried cranberries
1Tsp Toasted seeds
Golden syrup

Make your porridge, drop on your blueberries then the cranberries. Sprinkle on a teaspoon of toasted seeds and drizzle on some golden syrup. Eat it while it's hot!


25 April 2014

Recipe: Three Cheese, Tomato & Bacon Nests


Scraps of FILO pastry
100g Brie/Camembert
50g Stilton or a blue cheese 
30g Wensleydale
2 slices of bacon
6 sundried tomatoes
1 Egg

Glass of wine for chef

This is the kind of recipe that you would make with leftovers, I came up with this as I didn't want to waste the scraps of FILO that were broken and not useable with the recipe I was making (Jamie Olivers Lamb Pastillas) Raid the fridge and make up your own versions with whatever you have in. You'll just need a melting cheese and whatever else you have to hand. 


Preheat your oven to 180C Gas Mark 5

Lay the pieces of FILO in the individual ramekins or bowls, beat your egg and brush over the top.

Put into the oven for around 5-10 minutes until brown and crispy

Meanwhile chop your bacon and fry in some of the sundried tomato oil until crispy

Chop the sundried tomatoes into little pieces and add to a bowl

Add the bacon when done and drained from the pan

chop, tear or crumble your cheeses and add to the bowl

When your nests are done add the mixture to each dish and pop back into the oven for 10 minutes or until oozy

Serve with crusty bread and homemade chutney


31 March 2014

[The Garden Series] Chives

When you plant chives from seed you may - at first - be disappointed or think you have done something wrong. But chives just need some time to develop and become strong. I planted my seeds in spring 2012 whilst living in Manchester, they came with us to London in a small terracotta pot and I left them with their few fine chive like hairs with hope of something happening. The pot looked empty by winter and I forgot to clear it out, well boy, I'm glad I did! By spring 2013 they were coming up stronger than I ever imagined and by summer I gave them a new bigger pot for a home. They thrived and started to grow the beautiful purple flowers. I chopped them down and used them in potato salads galore before winter came round and they disappeared again. But with hope comes chives and from January - March they have grown and started with flower buds quicker than ever. Chives can be your friend as long as you have faith. I hope that by knowing they are not a plant that grows as easily as you think will give you the patience to grow them to their fullest. Enjoy and make plenty of tasty potato salads this spring. If you need to store the chives so there is no waste at the end of the season, chop them up and put them in ice cube trays with olive oil and freeze, pop out when needed. 


My Mums Potato Salad

Waxy or good boiling potatoes
Creme Fraiche (My addition)
1 Onion
Salt and Pepper
Peel the potatoes and cut in half, boil in salted water. When cooked allow to cool, chop into cubes then mix in the mayonnaise (as much as you want) Dice the onion and mix in to the pots. Chop the chives and mix through, then sprinkle some chives on top. Add salt and pepper to taste. 

Make some cucumber sandwiches, a flask, pack a blanket and head out for a picnic with a book!

9 February 2014

Waterside Arts Centre OPEN 2014 Exhibition

After another two years flying by, the biennial exhibition The Open is back at Waterside Arts Centre. Two months of submissions from many artists, a long selection process, the work curated and finally a private view was held for the opening on 7th February 2014. The night started with a presentation and handing out awards for best in Trafford, highly commended and winners of 3rd, 2nd and 1st prizes. 
The galleries were packed with guests filling the air with talking about the art over a glass of wine and within a few hours pieces of art were being snapped up and red stickered left right and centre or more to the point, Lauriston, Corridor and Bar galleries. With an eclectic mix of mixed media, etchings, pencil, acrylic, ceramic, sculpture and many more one off pieces, there’s no wonder there was a rush to buy. 
The exhibition runs until 24th May 2014 and I’m sure there won’t be much left available by the end, so come over, have a look around and if you see something you like then get yourself some art red stickered.

Butterflies Out of Darkness - Sarah Malone

Birds and Flowers - Julie Stevenson

The Assignment - Alison Scott

Afternoon Tea in Blue and White - Jenny Rydell

The Village - Charles Hickson

Entry: FREE
Ends 24th May 2014

29 January 2014

Cath Kidston Travel Sewing Kit

Sewing kit tour

A hard case covered in the heart rose oil cloth 
material, perfect for traveling as it's pretty and 
you can pop it right in your handbag.

 It has a press stud clip for the opening which is nice 
and sturdy.

 Inside, a thing of polka dot beauty. Safety pins, needles, 
embroidery scissors, a thimble, a stitch picker (Natterer), 
a thread plait and a tape measure.

I love this thread plait, keeps the cottons nice and neat.

There is plenty of space for tucking a few extras inside for 
the sewing traveller.

Perfect for me on my journeys each week up and down the country. 

Thank you for my gift Darren & Drew

For all other Cath Kidston goodies visit www.cathkidston.com 

28 January 2014

It's all Bobbins

It's been six days since I wrote my blog post about being all decisive. It had more attention than I thought it would, but I realise I didn't value myself very much to presume otherwise. 

Today my pink Jamie Oliver knife (Which I recommend!) slipped and sliced through my thumb nail [Ouch] whilst I was rushing to slice some fat off the ham I was originally chopping for tonights pea and ham soup but had decided the birds outside needed the fat right this second and I speedily hacked away and slice

So in conclusion [to these two paragraphs] I need to value myself and slow down. I need to think things through and not rush to do a side project when the initial project wasn't finished, as it could all go wrong. As proven during ham-gate. 

I have started reading build a business from your kitchen table by the founders of Not on the High Street Dot Com  again, I had started once before but in the early stages it tells you to answer some questions and quite honestly I couldn't. Last night I got to the point in chapter two again where I am prompted to answer said questions and in the silence of the night and the shining light of my desk lamp hunched on the end of my bed, I started to answer the questions without thinking too much about the words I was using. 

It's a huge problem of mine. There must be a teacher I can blame for my big word illness. I spend half my life saying "Erm, what's the word I'm looking for? Ooh it's on the tip of my tongue, but you know what I mean, yeah?" So the teacher clearly didn't do very well. 

I scribbled away with my pencil and got as far as I could before needing to do some financial research which my brain and eyes were not up for at 1am. Tonight I am going to continue, I am hoping that by reading and thinking before sleep that many answers will come to me in my dreams. Last night however, the dream of a theatre on a ship setting on fire and me frantically trying to find the right key for all the locks, was well... clearly not the dream I was searching for. As they say; try, try, try again.. 

My friend Elizabeth introduced me to this lovely site called Do What You Love for Life which has some fabulous and inspiring posts on it, especially the New Years Revolution which I have downloaded and printed and I look forward to progressing with it through the year. I of course need to acquire a pretty folder for it, how else would one do anything productively? 

Also, my bobbin holder arrived from across the world, it's where I like my plastic from! [I didn't realise it was coming from Hong Kong] I have less bobbins than I first thought. But hey, everyone loves an organised bobbin. 

Looking forward, I want to find proactive things to do on my coach journey, hopefully I can use it for reading and try and stay awake, even though it's damn hard! Reading has to have the answers. I need to make though, it's that passion that started this many years ago, possibly from day one and I can't lose that under paper work as I won't have a product. I'll get it, just at my own pace. And that depends what day it is.

23 January 2014

If its Good Enough For You, It's Good Enough For Me

I get a lot of time to think when I'm travelling, I mainly think about why I'm doing this and I'm not always entirely sure. My long winded explanation speaks for itself, as it all sounds like more of an excuse than a reason these days. I find myself looking for sympathy and praise for my efforts but also being annoyed at the lack of understanding for it too. I wish I could just say it's because I want to - like Billie Piper said so well in nineteen-ninety-whatnot - but I don't know if I do? If I were to write down what I want, what I really really want then I'm not so sure it would involved 360-odd miles of travel a week. For a start it's not helping do my bit for the o-zone is it? That's the global thingy-majig not the 90's pop show starring Toby Anstis. Yeah I don't know why I keep referencing that decade either. 

I want, a routine, the same bed most nights, to see my partner more than 50% of the year, my own business, to work from home, to cycle down the Thames and breathe in that clean fishy air, to make things, to create, to create things that make people happy, I want to be part of something beautiful. 

For any of this to happen, I would need to think about me and only me. That's where it gets tricky. 

I'm living in London, the place I've always wanted to live and at the moment I'm not living in London. Which is a waste; and life is too short for such a disposal of good culture on my doorstep. It's time to make some decisions and be decisive and firm, it's time to do this thing. 

It's now or never. 

9 January 2014

Happy New Year!

Happy New Year, I hope everyone is having a good one so far. 

Just a few random moments from 2014 thus far...

How to make boiled eggs beautiful for breakfast! Some Cath Kidston egg cups (Sale, about £2.50) and a pretty side plate (99p) from a charity shop. Hovering in the background a large salt grinder from Marks and Spencer (was £15, I had a £10 voucher that I paid £5 for on living social and that day there was 20% off homeware, so after many months of deliberation it paid off to have waited! It cost me £7) 

I have had a dress idea in my head for a while so I've decided to try and express it! It's only in the beginning stages and it's probably more a costume, or big event type dress but I'm very interested in making it a reality.

It was my birthday on the 7th of Jan and I got these gorgeous cabbage flowers off MrP. I also got an organic plant food maker bucket which is awesome, albeit a strange gift to most. I also got a beautiful ceramic dish from a good friend JuJu.

I have been poorly all week and over my birthday but hopefully i'll be better for when my friends come on the 17th for the weekend, I have an itinerary at the ready! Haven't done that for a while but I feel planning is a good base for spontanaety ��

Your task: Send someone a surprise next week!