Monday, 1 September 2014

Weekend...















▲ River walk
▲ Another lost tooth
▲ Finding sand at the beach
▲ COOL!
▲ Circus wonderland

So, its September already! Just two days left before Elizabeth goes back to school - she's been counting!

We spent the weekend both trying to squeeze in some last minute holiday fun, and getting ready for school. I still need to do labels, help finish holiday projects... and pop back to the uniform shop.

Archie has another week and a home visit before he starts - and then its half days for the first week.

I feel kind of ready for them to go back and sad at the same time. I'm ready for my house to remain tidy for longer than five minutes, not so ready for the school run, rushed mornings or the cooler weather.

I actually feel a bit apprehensive at this time of year. I'm not sure if its just the end of Summer and the kids leaving me for school, or perhaps those feelings of dread I experienced myself at the end of the holidays coming back. Luckily Elizabeth really enjoys school and has had such a positive experience so far. Hopefully it will remain that way!

Wishing you all a wonderful week and a great September! x

Thursday, 28 August 2014

The Colour Collaborative: August: Collections




This month I am very excited to be a guest blogger for the Colour Collaborative. Especially as the theme is 'collections'!

As long as I can remember I have loved collecting things. Especially bits picked up when out and about. Growing up on the Isle of Wight, we were lucky to be surrounded by wonderful countryside and sandy beaches. As a family, we would spend countless hours beach combing or walking our dog through the forest and woods.

I remember we all had our own little 'thing' we liked to collect at the seaside. My mum would pick up little yellow shells and my nan pieces of pale yellow and pink rounded quartz. My sister and I were always on the lookout for sea glass, especially rare cobalt blue pieces.

I have a memory of my Grandad holding out his closed hands for me to choose one of the treasures he'd found on the beach. I picked the hand with a pretty pink Cameo that must have fallen out of someone's jewellery. The other hand, and my sisters treasure, was a big piece of blue sea glass.




My love of collecting is something I have passed on to the kids and they can spend ages picking up treasures that catch their eye. Filling up their little bags or pockets with unusual stones, shells and driftwood, and often brightly coloured pieces of plastic too, their colours worn and softened by the sea, but still vivid enough to stand aloud from the abundance of pebbles.

My favourite thing to collect is sea glass. I could spend hours looking for those ocean tumbled shapes in hues of white, seafoam, green and brown and the occasional piece of blue - oh how I still get excited when I find a piece of blue! They're like little frosted jewels, standing out amongst the calm and muted greys and browns of the sand and stones.




In the Autumn our collections turn to treasures picked up at parks and the woods. We gather conkers, acorns and brightly coloured leaves in warm hues - our collections now a mixture of rich reds, golden yellows, and earthy browns.

By the feeling of the weather here this week, I don't think it will be long before we're picking up Autumnal finds. We've already found a few conkers and pretty seed pods. Oh Summer, how did you disappear so soon!

*****

Don't forget to visit the other Colour Collaborative blogs for more of this month's posts, just click on the links below.

Annie at Annie Cholewa
Sandra at Cherry Heart
Jennifer at Thistlebear

What is The Colour Collaborative?

All creative bloggers make stuff, gather stuff, shape stuff, and share stuff. Mostly they work on their own, but what happens when a group of them work together? Is a creative collaboration greater than the sum of its parts? We think so and we hope you will too. We'll each be offering our own monthly take on a colour related theme, and hoping that in combination our ideas will encourage us, and perhaps you, to think about colour in new ways.

Friday, 22 August 2014

Pressed flowers... and a giveaway...






Elizabeth and I have really enjoyed pressing flowers this Summer, picking them from the garden, or when out and about. Elizabeth received a press for her birthday last year and she still hadn't got around to using it. So this Summer, we dug it out of her crafty drawer and made sure we filled it up with some pretty blooms.

We have enjoyed using this little wild flowers guide too, Identifying and learning the names of the flowers we find. The illustrations are so sweet and we like the spaces where you can either draw or stick in finds from different seasons. We'll definitely be adding more flowers over Autumn and winter too!




I have another Little Guide to Wild Flowers book to giveaway, and also this sweet little flower press with tin and flower scissors - perfect for taking out and about!


a Rafflecopter giveaway
The giveaway ends on the 2nd September and I am happy to post worldwide. Good Luck! x

*****

You can still enter my giveaway to win a pack of sun print papere here!

Thursday, 21 August 2014

London Zoo














Last week we went to London for the day, to visit London Zoo. It was the first time the kids and I had been and we had a wonderful time there. It was pretty busy, with long queues to get in, but I guess that's to be expected in the Summer holidays!

We were there for the best part of the day, yet we still didn't manage to quite fit in everything - there really is so much there to see! The kids would have loved to have stopped and played in the adventure area and playgrounds, and It would have been nice to have seen some of the animal talks - especially the penguin show! But being aware of the journey home again, and little legs getting tired, there just wasn't the time!

Elizabeth and I watched the tigers for ages, with one sleeping just the other side of the glass panels. She was fascinated by their enormous paws. The butterfly house was pretty amazing too, it was far too hot for the kids, though I could have spent ages in there taking photo's of them all!

Friday, 15 August 2014

Sun prints... and a giveaway




I haven't tried making sun prints since I was at primary school. I can still remember being amazed by the magic of removing the objects from the paper, revealing the silhouettes left behind.

I bought a pack to do with the kids over the holidays and they really enjoyed it. Especially searching around the house for suitable objects to use. We found the flat items like the dried flowers worked best, as we could place some clear acetate over them, giving a really crisp edge.

To make:

You will need - sun print paper, acetate or a sheet of plastic or glass, a bowl of water and some interesting objects to print

▲ First gather together all your chosen items, some acetate or a piece of glass to keep down flat or light objects and a bowl of water.

▲ Next arrange your items on to the sun print paper. You will need to either do this quickly, or somewhere the sun's light cannot reach the paper, which is what I did. Apply the plastic sheet or acetate over the objects.

▲ Once all the items are in place, you will need to place the paper in direct sun light for a few minutes (or following manufacturers instructions) until the paper is exposed.

▲ Finally remove all the objects from the paper and submerge into cool water for a couple of minutes. The blue will turn to white, and the white to blue. Lay the paper flat to dry.








I just love how they turned out, I think they'd look great put in some frames. It was such a simple and no-mess project. I'd love to do this again in the Autumn too, with a collection of different shaped leaves or seed pods.

I also have another pack of sun print paper to giveaway...

The giveaway will end on the 25th August and I am happy to post worldwide.

Have a wonderful weekend! x

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Congratulations Laura! If you could email me your address and I'll get the pack in the post to you. x

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Acrylic flower tray...




As you probably know, I do love using flowers and other natural finds to make pictures. I love arranging them into neat patterns or pretty designs before photographing them. I'd had an idea of making a tray decorated with a floral design for a while now. I'd thought about the possibility of using resin to create a protective layer over pressed flowers, but when I saw these acrylic trays from Tiny Prints I knew it would work perfectly for what I had in mind.      

Using a photograph printed on to the tray in this way, meant I was able to create a design with a little more depth and was able to mess about with the layout and editing of the picture until I was happy with the end result!





I'm loving hydrangea flowers lately and their variations of colour, so I used mostly those and a few other bits picked from the garden too!

I cut a piece of black card twice the size of the finished tray to use as my base. I then started chopping and arranging the flowers to make a fairly busy design, but with plenty of white space also. I placed the cornflowers and a couple of other flowers upside down so I could get them to sit straight.




This was the finished photograph once I'd faffed around with the positioning of the flowers.





And this is the final tray! I love how it turned out and how vivid all the colours are against the black. I think it would make a great place to keep jewellery and trinkets or for make-up!

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Collections...




Some of the treasures we have collected lately... feathers, seed pods, conkers, leaves, beach pottery, stones with holes, a piece of jigsaw and an army figure!

Each month I'm photographing the bits and pieces we pick up when we're out and about. A way of documenting all those special finds from our adventures, or just from the garden!

Please do join in if you'd like to share your found collections too, I'd love to see them.

You can see my previous collections here and more Inspiration on my collections Pinterest board! x


Follow Caroline South's board Collections on Pinterest.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Lately...















▲ On the Isle of Wight
▲ Searching for treasures
▲ The view from an open top bus        
▲ Painting... legs
▲ In a rowing boat
▲ An evening beach walk

We seem to have been pretty busy so far this Summer holiday, and yet I don't have a great deal of pictures to show for it. The Isle of Wight photos were actually from Archie's Birthday, I just hadn't got around to sharing them. After visiting Dinosaur Isle, they had a wonderful time looking for treasures on the nearby beach. They were so excited to find the dinosaur fossils and gems I'd previously bought to bring along. Actually getting them to 'find' them, without anyone seeing me drop them, or me just loosing them, proved a bit tricky though!

One thing I love doing in the holidays, is being able to go down to the beach in the evenings. Forgetting about the normal school routine and early nights, to wander along the seafront and watch the sunset. I love how peaceful and cool the beach is at that time of day!

Things will probably be a little quieter around here whilst the kids are home, though I'll be popping in occasionally. We've been doing quite a bit of making and crafting, so I'll be sharing some of our creations soon!

Happy Friday lovelies, have a great weekend! x