confessions of a fabric obsessive

Monthly Archives: April 2012

favourite blog – rostitchery

Rostitchery has the honour of being the first blog that I read, liked and followed. Ever.

Without rostitchery, I would not have taken the plunge into blogging myself.

Rowena has been promoting buying locally and/or from makers not from what she calls “big box” retailers.

She also has a very good explanation of why your clothes don’t fit that is just as valid in the UK as it is for her in the US.

Sadly, Rowena has stopped blogging. But all of her blogging genius is still available to read for ever.

Stuff like this:

*please feel free to share your own stories about buying locally, as well as links to artists and craftsmen in your area.  i promise, word gets around, and there is power in numbers.  🙂

*buy local, buy handmade buyer hack:  if you find an artist whose work you like but you don’t see exactly what you’re looking for, go ahead and ask if he/she can make something just for you!  more often than not, artists and crafters are happy to oblige, as it gives them an opportunity to expand their work and their creativity.  *** will gladly incorporate your own materials into a custom design, so feel free to bring her those sentimental pieces of jewellery or those little bits of broken nostalgia that you can’t bear to just toss into the trash. 

*buy local, buy handmade buyer hack:  start your handmade holiday shopping now!  custom, handmade gifts take time to create, and the really good makers book up fast.

Read her blog already? No? Then hop over and start now. Tell her I sent you…

Claire Bear

Tourist in my own Town

Yesterday, I had an all-day ticket for the buses in Birmingham, so after I’d been and done the things that I needed to do, I went into the city centre to fetch the library books that I’d requested (I live life on the edge, I do, oh yes).

Despite having planned this library trip for several days, do you think I managed to bring my library card with me? Do you think I discovered the absence of said library card before I’d walked all the way from the bus stop to the library?

Being in the city centre with nothing to do, a couple of things caught my eye, and I decided to do “tourist in my own town”. Have you ever done this? It means taking photos of everything just like a tourist, but close to where you live, hence “tourist in my own town”.

The first thing that caught my eye was the African Textiles exhibition in Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery (you can see it’s the Museum and Art Gallery, ‘cos it says it in letters above the main entrance).

The museum is a lovely old Victorian building that I love for itself, inside and out. I missed “Lost in Lace” and the Da Vinci exhibition that ended last month, I just didn’t get a chance to get into town with a couple of hours spare. I’m determined not to miss the African textiles exhibition( I wonder if they’ll let me take photos?).

I also spotted some artwork on the side of the Library, that I’d never really noticed before.

I’ve no idea why “Everything Is Possible” is written in Spanish.  Excuse the vans parked in the photo, there’s a lot of building going on in Birmingham right now.

Around the corner from the museum is the Town Hall with the famous “floozie in the jacuzzi” aka Mistry’s River sculpture.

Big girl, our River, kinda Rubenesque.

Mistry’s  Guardians remind me of a Sphinx.

I always want to straighten up Gormley’s Iron Man, I’d love it more if it wasn’t intentionally wonky. That’s the Gas Hall in the background, no idea how it got its name.

New Street is full of shoppers at the weekend, and full of the Christmas Market during November and December. You never see photos of it when the trees are budding, so I took one or two. I love the old buildings here too. You hear so much about all the new building going on, it’s nice to take a look at the old ones that are still alive and well used.

So that was half an hour in Birmingham city centre. When I got off the bus in one of Birmingham’s suburbs, I carried on with taking photos.

Walking along the river Cole. So much green within sight of a busy main road.

One of my favourite trees,  the Hawthorne (May), is starting to blossom, always a good sign for me that spring is here and summer won’t be long.

Even people’s front gardens are looking pretty

Happy Wednesday


I am a Very Inspiring Blogger…

… to one person, at least.

A little while ago , I noticed this message left on my blog; “Hi, I have nominated you for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award.  Renee”

This is the second award I have been nominated for, and I am deeply touched.

I wish to thank Renee at  www.positiveboomer.wordpress.com  for nominating me for the Very Inspiring Blogger Award. If you haven’t been to her wonderful blog about taking care of yourself, then please do.

Thank you so much.  I am most grateful to receive this award and happy that I am inspiring others with my blog.


  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Share 7 things about yourself.
  • Pass the award to seven nominees.

Seven things about myself:

1.     I  love the smell of fresh-mown grass

2.    There isn’t enough dark chocolate in the world

3.    I despair of ever being able to make things with my hands that matches the stuff inside my head

4.    I spend way too much time reading

5.    My favourite colour is blue

6.    My favourite food, apart from chocolate, is chicken

7.    In my head I have a little cottage by the seaside and go to the beach everyday just to check it’s still there.

Seven Nominees: I am meeting more inspiring people everyday, both online and in real life. I haven’t put my nominees in any particular order. I do understand some people do not like to accept awards and that is ok.

Nominees are:

  1. sewfearless.com for great tutorials, inspiring makes and a sew-your-own-suitcase
  2. artsyforager.wordpress.com for finding beautiful and colourful art to inspire me every day
  3. fiftydresses.wordpress.com for sewing history lessons. Because of you, I’ve bought some vintage patterns recently and I’m going to make one soon
  4.  thecurvyspine.wordpress.com for sharing her story
  5. raspberry.co.uk for her wonderful designs and free-motion embroidery
  6. rostitchery.com for getting me hooked on reading blogs.  Yours was the first blog I ever read: without you this blog would not exist
  7. undercoverowl.wordpress.com for helping me see what creativity looks like


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