About Me

My photo
follow up from previous blog, http://conniekonnykards.blogspot.com/ I am retired here in UK, well into my seventies, and I have crafted as long as I can remember. OH John and I have been happily married for 54 years. We have a lovely family and a cat with attitude ...... Lots of work from my hobbies is on Flickr.

Saturday, 31 December 2011


I have a bouquet of two dozen gorgeous roses to start the year ... may each month be filled with roses for us all! Connie.

Friday, 30 December 2011

TAST & Buttons

I'm so looking forward to sharon b's 2012 TAST challenge which starts next week.
Inspired by my dear friend Carolyn Saxby (http://carolynsaxby.blogspot.com/) who mentioned that she is thinking of a theme for her work in TAST, and as I have done about half the stitches in the 2007 and all in the 2010 challenges, with no theme, I decided to choose a theme this time too.
So ... I've enjoyed using buttons on Christmas cards this year ... I've had a good sort out of many old boxes tucked away and I've found hundreds of buttons.
I'll be doing TAST, with buttons, (and no doubt flowers and beads, which I can't resist), this time. Let's hope Sharon's stitches are easy enough for me.
This pre-challenge piece is Backstitch and Buttons - very easy!

Wednesday, 21 December 2011

Gift Tags

I needed six more gift tags .. so .. a couple of hours ago I found card offcuts, picture scraps, scissors, cutting knife, rule, DS tape, and my trusty Gold Leaf pen ...
time flies when you're having fun!
I got carried away - never mind, hopefully I'll find them for next year's pressies!

Saturday, 17 December 2011

Happy Christmas!

I seem to have fallen into once a month blogging!
Anyway, here we are near to the end of 2011 and looking forward to Christmas and then hopefully a good New Year. My life is quite repetitive, most of my crafting and photography goes on the Flickr site (linked at the side here) so there is not a lot to add here.
Many thanks to friends who pop in, your comments are always very welcome.
Happy Christmas to all and all good wishes for 2012, Connie.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Roses in November

No blogging for some time - I have mostly stayed at home, making small cross stitch motifs for Christmas cards and wondering about a possible spinal op next year - quite a lot to be thinking about.
Today I had a phone call to see the consultant on Thursday, so decision time is soon!
It's a strange month - unsettled in many ways.
The weather has been cold, warm, dull, sunny, each day different. Yet the roses still bloom, beautiful for a few days and still beautiful as they dry out (as in my new header ..) - we are lucky to have roses in November!

Saturday, 1 October 2011


What a wonderful Indian Summer we are having to take us into October.
Do share my calendar and a big thank you to so many friends here and on Flickr for all your support and lovely comments.
It has been a difficult year for me so far and I'm sorry that I do not comment regularly on all the lovely blogs and photos I see. As always I look to the future and now await a consultation about a possible spine operation.
I long to get things sorted, to walk, have less pain, and more sleep!
In the immediate future we are visiting family in Spain for two weeks, back on 18th October. We will be well looked after.
Again, many thanks good friends. Connie.

Saturday, 24 September 2011

September Notecards

It's time I dropped a line to one or two friends so I wandered into the garden to find some nice flowers to 'snap' to make notecards .... we bought a number of inexpensive bush Fuschia from a fruit shop earlier in the year - they have bloomed for weeks and now have a whole new crop of lovely buds and flowers.
Even the wild strawberries are still cropping for the birds, and there was one delicate white anemone - so now I'll make a few cards.
It's time I did something instead of sitting and looking into space - though I have done a little stitching for Christmas cards. It has to be stitch a little, rest a lot, as Arthritis rules!

Monday, 29 August 2011

The good .....

... two weeks ago my OH was 80 and we had two lovely sunny "garden party" days for about 50 family members and friends, John's sister and husband came from Spain for two weeks and we all enjoyed this special time.
The pebble owl was a gift and has pride of place in a border.

The bad ... a few days ago my back took a turn for the worse, so more pain and hardly any walking again, but ...

The beautiful ... I hobbled into the garden yesterday, early Autumn blooms are rich and vibrant, the gorgeous cream/lime/pink hydrangea, a birthday present, is doing well and as always flowers worked their magic therapy for me ... I'll soon be hobbling better!

Monday, 1 August 2011

More Coat Hangers

I'm still recycling old wooden coat hangers, using fabrics from stash, and happily stitching - but I have weakened and bought two lovely new fat quarters - I can't resist fabrics!

Thursday, 21 July 2011

Recycle Project

This morning I came across several wooden coat hangers that have seen better days,(like me!!)and decided to give them another chance, as I really like them better than the many plastic ones I've accumulated over the years.

So I found a few pieces of fabric, wadding, a needle, and thread.
With a bit of wrapping, stretching, and runnung stitches large enough to be tacking stitches, I recycled four hangers.
One fabric used to be a kitchen table cloth, the blue striped was a dress, long ago, and the other two materials are scraps left over from fabric art some time ago - many times I wish I wasn't such a hoarder, but at times old stash comes in handy!

Monday, 18 July 2011

100 bookmarks for charity

As I quickly sold the first 30 bookmarks for a Macmillan Cancer support fund I carried on and soon had made 100 - which will raise £50
The large mosaic shows 98 - I seem to have mislaid photos of two!
Maybe when all are sold I may copy the pics and sell even more.
This project has kept me busy for a week or so - at last, after many lazy months, I have done something worthwhile!

Bookmarks 24-36 and 37-50

Thursday, 7 July 2011


Today I made 23 simple bookmarks, using cropped images from my files stuck onto firm card strips.
They are the first batch to be sold for a fundraising group for Macmillan Cancer Support. I'll make these up to 50 and more later if they sell quickly.
It has been some time since I raised money for a charity - for many years I made cards for a local toy library for children with special needs.

Saturday, 25 June 2011

Thank You

A big thank you to my many friends here and on Flickr for all your lovely sentiments and many good wishes in recent months.
After waiting since January to have a spine injection to relieve pain in my legs I had it yeserday! The long delay was the NHS waiting list and more weeks delay as I had Shingles badly.
Last night I slept well and, although mobility is not much improved - I knew it would not be, I feel very much better today, no leg pains and looking forward to taking up favourite hobbies, but I will have to watch tennis at Wimbledon until the end of next week (on TV!).
I have to go back to hospital next Wednesday for new investigations - hopefully problems will sort quickly this time.
I feel mean that I haven't commented individually on photos, lovely crafting, and so many good wishes for a long time - all the photostreams and blogs do so much for me, helping to raise my spirits on low days and providing enjoyment.
I hope to be more positive soon and contact many friends individually.
Again, many thanks.
This card is made in Picnik,from the original apricot rose posy photo on Flickr, www.flickr.com/photos/23261611@N04/5869140600/in/photostream
edited with HSL filter.

Monday, 20 June 2011

Memories ....

"Awake, in the night,
Memories of happy days,
Float like drifting clouds."

For too many months I have had disturbed nights and have read many novels, browsed the internet, and spent hours remembering the many, many, happy days in my 76 years -I'll never be short of happy memories!

On Friday, at last, I'm having a spine injection which will hopefully give relief from pain, and I'll be able to sleep and dream about the happy days .....

Friday, 3 June 2011

June ....

June - soon half the year will be gone!
I'm much better from the dreaded Shingles but I'm not sleeping well, have too much pain, and still waiting for a spine injection - promised 'soon' in January, (NHS has funny ideas about time scales!!!)
Well, I now have a date, June 24th ....

This week I was more sorry for myself as PC Monitor had to go away for repair - but it's back today.

On 1st June our daughter bullied me to venture out and we came upon a poppy field - gorgeous, though I couldn't climb the fence to get close for photos.
Never mind, it cheered me lots and now I've got a few more pics in my flowers files,

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

So soon ....

...blogging again so soon!
I remembered I had to get a birthday card off to Spain today so made a 'prettypretty' from the bits box - not my usual style but OK and quick!
The only part I really made is the watering can, cut from corrugated card - the rest is 'lick & stick' - well I don't really lick, LOL.
It's made today's post and has just a week to get there in time - I hope it does!

Monday, 23 May 2011

Flower Show

... blogging seems to have become just a monthly affair recently ... maybe because I'm not doing a lot other than reading, and I'm not greatly into writing book reviews ...
Well this morning I decided I'd manage to go into the garden and take a few rose photos for Mosaic Monday on Flickr ... but a after a nose bleed, very wobbly walking, another nose bleed ... and a downpour of rain, I gave up that idea and read a few more chapters of a novel.
Then I saw Chelsea Flower Show day one on TV - lovely, I'll watch each day and wish I could go there!
As I can't I've made my version of an 'Artisan Garden' as my mosaic - snippets from pics of various small paintings, stitched pieces, and an eraser cutting - perhaps tomorrow I'll get new photos ...

Monday, 18 April 2011

April Posy

For six days I have been out of action as I have an acute flare of spinal pain - but yesterday I managed a short hobble in the garden and I was pleased to find lots of violets haphazardly growing here and there.
So I made a little posy - the smallest flowers do more for me than all the pain tablets I'm taking .....
I'm waiting for a spinal injection - then maybe I'll get to do some crafting or painting again.

Monday, 11 April 2011


Yesterday my daughter took me to a lovely local Arboretum.
The sun has been shining for several days and Spring is really springing!
As she was busy pushing my wheelchair and at times I was walking wobbly on two sticks we didn't attempt to take photos ... maybe we will another time.


The pictures above are for Mosaic Monday on Flickr - from photos taken other years, in other places - my own little "Arboretum"!

Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Fabric Beads

I blogged about this pic on 30th March ...

.... this evening I found some matching beads and gilt spacers and threaded a necklace up on ribbon.
Later this month I'll be demonstrating the simple fabric beads at a small craft group - maybe by then I'll have some round beads made too.

... back to stitching ...

Tast 2007 revisited

I finished the Tast 2010 challenge three months ago but left working on the 2007 rerun as my arm and shoulder were so painful - now I'm attempting a little stitching at times.
I have missed the needles and threads!
This is 35 Sisha Stitch - attatching discs, and 36 Cable Chain Stitch, with filler Feather stitches.
The frame is virtual, from picnik, for display.
I found the Shisha challenging - neither disc is stitched correctly, but they are attached! Maybe I'll get it right one day.
Anyway, I'm pleased to be back stitching a little in between the Fabric Beads and 1000 Flowers sort out projects,
.... and tablets, rubbing gel and heatpads for my arm!!! LOL.

Monday, 4 April 2011

1000 Flowers

When I retired in 1996 I came upon a quote, "Let 1000 flowers grow." (Mao)
As we had always lived in the same house and had a flower garden I knew I had done just that over many years.
But I decided it would be a theme in retirement, in art and a variety of crafts. This was before I had a PC so all drawings, paintings, doodles and scribbles were in various sketch books and a fat A4 file - some pictures, textile art, and stitching were framed, most put into drawers or boxes. Now my craft room, well everywhere, is a chaotic mess of my collections and I must do some sorting and weeding.
So - a new project starts today - keep some drawings etc on disc, maybe add new ones, and discard lots. ("discard" is not usually in my vocabulary - it's going to be a challenge!)
Above is an early sheet of outlines, used for reference in making many greetings cards, which I sold for charity.

Some of the ideas were drawn onto small wooden tiles with felt pens. The squares are 'inchies' and ovals are 2x1 inches. I still have a few, although not varnished the colours have stayed bright

I doubt I'll really tidy up or reduce the clutter, but I will enjoy going through things - including re-reading many flower quotes I have saved ....
"Flowers have spoken to me more than I can tell in written words" (Lydia M Child) -
.... very true!

Wednesday, 30 March 2011

WIP - Fabric Beads

Kristal Wick's lovely book 'fabulous fabric beads' arrived this morning and after a quick look through I had to try the basic rectangles - my first attempt at bead making.
They are easy to roll and glue over a drinking straw and tomorrow I'll know how substantial they are when the fabric is completely dry.

I took out the straw but I think light fabrics and ribbon will need a straw stiffener inserted.
Maybe I'll varnish them if I decide to carry on with these colours to make a chunky necklace. Mostly I craft for the pleasure of 'doing' so may not make anything.
Next I'll try triangles and then round beads - they will challenge me I'm sure...
Anyway, I'm more motivated than I was yesterday!

Tuesday, 29 March 2011


I can't believe that March is nearly over - and not a blog from me!
No blog, no stitching, not a lot on Flickr - well I have been reading and watching TV
(that's sad!)
I have made a few on line mosaics, manipulating photos with GIMP, like this version of a Dahlia, and making several photo collages in Picasa, like the one below.

A couple of sunny days made me think of Spring, but it's cold and dull again today -
maybe I'll feel better in April, Spring will really arrive and I'll get into a more positive mood - I hope so!

Monday, 21 February 2011

GIMP week 2 - 'Spring'

I'm enjoying Sharon b's course 'GIMP for Textile Artists'.
It's challenging me but I manage to practice, albeit with my own slant on some things!
This was good practice - enhancing colour, layers, selecting the oval tool, and lots of copy and paste.
The original embroidery was a fabric ATC from a photo taken in our local park, printed on fabric and over stitched mostly with French Knots.
I'm not doing embroidery just now - giving my arthritic arm a rest, but later I may print this on fabric and add even more knots!

Thursday, 17 February 2011

GIMP Week 2

'Squinting In The Sun"
I managed the first task - setting an old fashioned look colourized photo into an oval with blurred edges, though I'm not sure I really want to look older than I am! LOL.
Next is intro to using layers in graphics - with a few do and undo attempts I managed to do two layers. It took me a time and at the end of it all I didn't like the colour I chose for the background layer and I had difficulty in saving in GIMP so I saved as JPEG as I always do.
Then I changed the background in Publisher as I can do this quickly.
As I'm a picnik frame addict I added a pretend frame too.
I musn't sit any longer or I'll 'lock' all my joints, so I'll go into GIMP, change the background there, and continue the lesson another time.
I'm enjoying the lessons - time flies and I only hope I can remember what I'm doing for another time!

Friday, 11 February 2011

Learning Curve ...

My learning curve has taken a new direction, after receiving an email from our son Neil, who works in the travel industry.
He is in Cambodia - impressed, and knew I would like to see and read about the amazing ancient temples, Angkhor Wat & Angkor Thom, dating back to 802AD.
Yes, I loved browsing pictures and info, via Google, and wish we were able to jump on a plane and get to see them!
I try to 'learn something new each day' - today I have, and I've sent for a book about Cambodia, a place I knew nothing about yesterday.

Even when we get a bit housebound there's plenty to enjoy!

Tuesday, 8 February 2011

Therapy .....

As I'm getting more immobile, with frequent pain from arthritis, and it seems unlikely that things will improve despite many hospital visits last year and more future appointments,I have decided to up my self help programme with different therapy techniques,

eg losing weight(very difficult!),relaxation (nice one!),SMILE(great but sometimes a challenge!),distraction (it often works!) ... and ... making sure my brain keeps going (doesn't always work!).
Last year I enjoyed the challenge of Take A Stitch Tuesday - TAST, and I have just received the Week I lesson of sharon b's GIMP for Textile Artists course.
I know using GIMP will challenge me, I have read and started practising things, some applications I knew, others are new to me.
The edited Alcohol Ink Abstract is my first print out.
I'm looking forward to moving on and applying GIMP to textile design.
I'm not a quilter but will hopefully design small pieces to develop as textile art. Whatever the results I'll be thoroughly absorbed - I am excited about this project.
Even thinking about it all has helped me forget those nagging pains!

Wednesday, 26 January 2011

Fabric & Grape Stalks ....

For several weeks I have been noticing the lovely Winter tree silhouettes everywhere.
This morning at breakfast - there was one when I ate the last few grapes!
I can't sew much at the moment - that arthritis again - so I made this layered collage design. I'll print it onto a linen Jet Ink fabric and hopefully add hand stitching soon.
I love picnic frames, so added one.

Wednesday, 19 January 2011

A Tree .....

..... stitched s-l-o-w-l-y,
a little each day.
It's too late for last Christmas but very early for next!
The pattern, with slight changes, is from JBW Designs'
"Christmas Motifs Sampler".

Monday, 17 January 2011

2011 .....

... well into January and no blogging, stitching, photos, or crafting.
I have struggled with stitching and even knitting, but arthritis in arms and shoulders is winning - maybe I'll beat it when the weather gets warmer!

We have many lovely wedding photos, (see previous blog), and after browsing I looked at some of the other photo collections
and made a "Mosaic Monday" of memory scraps:
... a rose, always a favourite,
lots of celebrations,
thank goodness the Vapourer didn't eat the whole apple tree!
yummy scone,
painting with watercolour pencils,
teddies that went to South Africa to live,
fun on a wheel,
was Barney really as small as that?
ceramic and pine needle woven mat, made by my dear friend Kay, in USA.
.. at 94 she still makes beautiful things like this!
lily bud and lace,
hand carved by a German craftsman,
lovely Victorian scent bottle, sadly now broken.
a favourite old small jug,
great grandmother's watch,
lovely threads,
sewing machine, long gone.

Happy memories - it's always nice to look back, but better to move on so I'll take a couple of pain tablets and come back to today!