Friday, January 31, 2014

A most beautiful family tree

Thank you SO much for all the lovely comments and messages about my baby news! It's so lovely to be able to finally talk about it. :) It's funny, perhaps when you are starting your own family, it makes you think more about your own history and family, so when an email came in from Canadian illustrator Eva Juliet, her work really struck a chord.

Eva creates personalised family trees, but via the most beautifully illustrated piece of artwork - a far cry from your usual spider drawing of a family tree! I think everyone is at least a bit interested in their family history so there are so many gift options for these - a big birthday, mother or fathers day, or even for a new baby - so they can grow up aware of their family background...

family tree illustration by EvaJuliet

family tree illustration by EvaJuliet

family tree illustration by EvaJuliet

family tree illustration by EvaJuliet

family tree illustration by EvaJuliet
family tree illustration by EvaJuliet

There's three different design options to choose from, which one do you like best?!


Wednesday, January 22, 2014

My big news for 2014!

There seems to be an awful lot going on in my life at the minute; working on the next issue of 91 Magazine, meeting all my freelance deadlines and our kitchen renovation are all keeping me very busy. BUT, the biggest and most exciting thing happening to me at the moment.... I'm expecting a baby!!

knitted baby booties
knitted baby booties by Bye Bye Birdie
I've been desperate to share the news on here since I found out way back in November, and have often found it hard to blog, not only because of first trimester tiredness but because I found it hard not to mention the news! It's such a huge thing, especially when it's your first, that it is SO hard to keep it secret!!

I'm now four months in, and everything seems to be going well so far (touch wood) and I'm feeling really well now I'm into the 2nd trimester. I'm hugely excited but also slightly scared, as I must admit I don't know much about babies, but I suppose lots of people feel like that.

I haven't yet bought anything for the baby, we plan to find out the sex at my next scan, so probably after that I will start buying bits and pieces, although I've been well warned not to go mad as there's lots of things you don't need, and I've been advised cheap clothing is best at the start as they tend to get ruined. But this hasn't stopped me browsing the internet for lovely things and ideas for the nursery!

my fave baby buys
Clockwise: Elephant print - Seventy Tree / Babygrow - Corby Tindesticks / Bib - Corby Tindersticks / Wallpaper - This Modern Life / Knited toy - Donna Wilson / Cot bumper - Nubie

pastel coloured nursery
via Chloe Fleury blog

mint green nursery

gold mushroom lamp by Mokkasin
via Mokkasin
cute baby buys
Knitted sheep - Molly Meg / Baby shoes - Scout and Co.
muted baby nursery ideas
Left: via The Socialite Family Right: via Apartment Therapy
I promise not to turn Patchwork Harmony into a baby blog, but of course there might be the odd nursery related post here and there! :) I'd love any tips you have on your fave websites for nursery and lovely baby things! It's definitely my new obsession!


Monday, January 20, 2014

My kitchen moodboard

So, finally after years of saving and gradual planning in my head and on Pinterest, our kitchen renovation is happening! Well, it was supposed to start today, but didn't, so fingers crossed the builders will be here bright and early in the morning.

A lot of things won't be decided until the wall is knocked through between our kitchen and dining room, but I have planned a lot already, and have even started ordering the fun stuff, which has got me so excited! :)

So here is a little idea of what I'm aiming for, we shall see if it turns out this way, probably in a couple of months by the time we decorate etc, but I will keep you updated on the progress!

image via
One of the main features will be a reclaimed wood kitchen island and I'd been looking out for some suitable stools for a while. I was looking for some that had a bit of an industrial feel to sit nicely against the reclaimed wood, but struggled to find some within budget, or that were the right height or colour. I loved the ones in this shot above, so was chuffed to come across these on eBay the other day which have a similar look, and for a budget-friendly £25 each! So in the shopping cart they went, I can't wait to receive them and see them in the flesh! 

The island itself is based on this kitchen which I've loved for years. Basically it will be made from reclaimed wood and painted white. But to give it a bit more of a contemporary feel we've went for a copper worktop. I'm really excited about this as I think it'll be a great feature, and the copper ages really nicely and is antibacterial, bonus! It's being made by a local company to us called Tipfords.

image credit: Paul Massey
image credit: Paul Massey
image via Tipfords
image via Tipfords
I also have all our appliances on order - which are all Smeg. I'm so happy to finally be getting the fridge I've been wanting for years! And the sleek design of the rest of the appliances should hopefully contrast well with the reclaimed wood too. I'm hoping our oven will be able to fit in a chimney breast that is currently blocked in, it sounds a little weird, but fingers crossed it will work out! We've already had the sink delivered, which is the one above, a belfast sink (something else I've wanted for ages!) but with a little bit of detailing on the front panel. The sink came from TapsUK and those are the taps I have my eye on from Victorian Plumbing.

The rest of the kitchen will be free-standing, and I'm still on the look out for pieces that I love. Something like these above would be great - again I love the contrast in the left hand pic between the sleek fridge and the roughed up paintwork on the cabinet...

To add some subtle colour and pattern, I decided to go ahead with the patchwork tiles you may remember me posting about a while ago! These ones are from Armatile, and while I did love the real vintage encaustic tiles, these seemed like a more affordable option, that will be much more durable and easy to maintain.

I hope to build in some open shelving in one corner that would otherwise be dead space, so I hope that will work out ok, and for lighting we are again bringing in that industrial look with some bare bulb pendants something like these...

That's kinda where I'm at at the moment, there will be lots more happening in the rest of the room, but as I say, I think some things will be decided as we go along! I've taken a lot of inspiration from varying places, images I've found and my own ideas, so I just hope it all comes together as one when it's complete!


Thursday, January 16, 2014

DIY: tablet device case

For Christmas the hubby got me a Kindle. It was by request, even though I've been in the 'I prefer real books' camp for a long time, I finally gave in, because I realised I read a book once and then it just lies in the house, never to be read again, until I decide to give it to the charity shop. So as I am trying to declutter, realisation dawned that perhaps a Kindle was the way forward. Plus, it's a lot easier to carry around in your bag when getting the train, which is often when I read the most.

So far, I'm loving it, but straight away realised I needed a little case for it to keep it protected when I am carrying it around, so of course, I decided I'd have a go at making one!

Craft DIY project for making a fabric case for a tablet device. I've actually shared the tutorial for this little quilted number over on the AO at Home blog, so you'll need to pop over there for the full project, but just so you know, it's not just for Kindle, you can easier adapt it to fit your iPad or Samsung Galaxy or whatever device you have!

What do you think? I'm quite pleased with my Liberty-esque fabric which I found in my local Fabricland. ;) 

Craft DIY project for making a fabric case for a tablet device.


Thursday, January 9, 2014

91 Magazine craft special is online!

It's that dreary month of January, I'm sure it's most people's least favourite month of the year. Everyone's broke after Christmas and it's cold and dark outside. Well! We've decided to try and remedy this problem with our brand new issue of 91 Magazine! It is our first ever Craft Special, as we thought it's the perfect time to stay indoors and get making and also with the new year, it's time to try out some new things!

If you've never tried crochet, then maybe have a go at Emma Lamb's simple crochet pin cushion or try a bit of cross-stitching with Peas and Needles blogger Lucy Davidson perhaps? We've got 9 craft tutorials for you to try, all different disciplines and levels of difficulty, so hopefully something to suit everyone!

91 Magazine craft special cover
We also report back on some recent craft and handmade events we've visited, such as Renegade Craft Fair, where we met some talented makers, and we peek inside the home of crafty blogger Leigh Metcalf, as well as checking out the colourful garden studio of screen printer Megan Alice England.

Lots to keep you busy until Spring appears! We'd love to see if you have a go at any of our tutorials, so please share your photos on Instagram or Twitter and tag with #91craftspecial.

Also, you may have spotted we have a little bit of a new look! We'd love to hear your feedback on this so do let us know, via commenting here or on social media. And of course please let all your friends, family and colleagues know that our latest issue is available and free to read for all! 

Below is a little peek inside, but why not head straight to the 91 Magazine website and get reading!

Origami vase DIY tutorial featured in 91 Magazine craft special

Home of crafty blogger Leigh Metcalf featured in 91 Magazine craft special

crochet pincushion DIY tutorial featured in 91 Magazine craft special

contemporary teacup candle DIY tutorial featured in 91 Magazine craft special

work studio of Megan Alice England featured in 91 Magazine craft special

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

DIY: Fabric clipboards

Regular readers will remember how much of the decorations and the details I made myself for our wedding last June. One of my projects was making these little fabric clipboards to display our seating plan...

wedding seating plan - handmade fabric clipboards
Well as I thought these are something that have many uses, not just for weddings, I've shared the super simple tutorial for making these over on the AO at Home blog. Pop over there now to see how I made them, and some other uses for these pretty little clipboards!

handmade fabric clipboards
handmade fabric clipboards
Wedding pic ©Jemma Watts / Pearl Pictures
Other pics: ©Caroline Rowland

Friday, January 3, 2014

Stylish family homes

I love seeing inside creative people's homes, but I must admit, I'm also intrigued by family homes. When I was working on the Mollie Makes Home bookazine last year, we did a section on family homes, and one of my questions was always how do you keep your home looking so gorgeous, neat and tidy with kids running amok?! Most admitted that their homes aren't always this perfect, but that they did have certain rules about putting toys away at the end of the day etc. I'm in awe of these people as I struggle to keep our house clean and tidy with just the two of us!

This week I came across a blog called The Socialite Family, written by an ex chidren's fashion journalist, which focuses solely on family homes. The photography is gorgeous and there is a lovely mix of interiors to pore over. Most are effortlessly stylish Paris-based homes, as well as a few from other places such as London and LA.

Here's a little taster, but do pop over for a browse...

family home interiorsfamily home interiors - kids roomfamily home interiors

family home interiors

family home interiors - kids room

family home interiors - kids room

family home interiors - large family kitchen

family home interiors - family kitchen
Pin It button on image hover