Thursday, 21 March 2013

A trip from Cobham to Somerset House

Little did I know, attending the Creative Country Business event in Cobham, Surrey in summer 2012 that 9 months later I would be standing in Somerset House looking at my exhibition stand overlooking the Thames with a fellow student musing “Would you not want to wake up to that view in the morning?”

Inspired by Doug Richard (former Dragon’s Den panellist) and other speakers at last summer’s event as well as the realisation that I needed some help with growing my business, I decided to apply for a space at School For Creative Startups. A year long course to help creative businesses to set up and/or grow their business ventures.

Being accepted onto the course, the class of approximately 100 start ups attended monthly, very interactive and practical sessions covering all areas of business needed to grow and succeed our businesses. I have greatly enjoyed the no-nonsense, practical and often ‘kick in the backside’ approach of Dough, Medeia and the whole team at the school. I think we all, to varying degrees, went through various stages of bewilderment, confusion and desperation during the past 6 months, however, I am I finally emerging with a clearer view of where I want to be and how I will get there!

Building the stand at Somerset House (before and after)
In a few hours the doors will open to the Startup Showcase at Somerset House in London. During the next 4 days we will meet the press, investors, titans of industry, buyers and the public pitching our businesses, getting feedback and maybe even sell one or two pieces. What an opportunity and I am so excited to be part of this.

impressions from the stand

While I probably will not have the pleasure to wake up with the gorgeous view onto the river Thames and the Royal Festival Hall, I have had the great privilege to be part of the School for Creative Startups, which has giving me the necessary focus and lots of tools to grow polkadots & blooms into a sustainable company. Thank you!

Friday, 17 February 2012

A book cover for Shifra

I recently received a request from a customer to create a book cover for her daughter's Prayer Book that would also show her Hebrew name - Shifra. I am not familiar with the Hebrew aplphabet but Shifra's mum provided me with the Hebrew letters and I searched the internet to find an alphabet that would help me to recreate the relevant letters in fabric for the applique.

I hugely enjoyed making this book cover and I hope Shifra will like it as well.

Friday, 16 September 2011

Making a photograph

I attended Vicki Knights 'Photography Workshop for creative business poeple' at MakeMe,The Medicine Garden in Cobham, Surrey today.

I had been really looking forward to the workshop, not just because I really felt that I needed to progress my photography skills but also because I really enjoy taking photographs. I was not dissappointed, the setting at the Medicine Gardens were just gorgeous, the company was great fun and Vicki's workshop just utterly brilliant. I learned so much in just a few hours that I am looking forward to try out my new found skills in the next few weeks and months. So stay tuned :-)

Vicki started the day with a quote from Ansel Adams 'You don't take a photograph you make it.' - this will stay with me for a long, long time!

Please check out Vicki's website and blog! She also does family photography workshops, headshots (check out my profile image :-)) and family photography.

Friday, 12 August 2011


Mum and daughter were playing around with face paint this afternoon. While I was impressed with my 5 year old's artistic capabilities on my face, I shall not post a picture of the results :-) However, here is my creation. I was quite happy, especially as it was only my 2nd go. (The first one was a cat on my youngest DD's face)

(By the way, my daughter is not crying, she is wishing her dad a 'Happy lunch' :-)

Friday, 29 April 2011

A glimpse of Kate

With no specific plans for the day we made our way to London to experience some of the Royal Wedding atmosphere. Getting into London Victoria we thought we would take a little trip up to Buckingham Palace but had to divert our route due to a bomb scare. I knew that Kates's hotel for the night, the Goring, was in Belgravia, but I was still surprised when we actually passed it on our diversion route. We though we may as well have a closer look but where pushed back by police due to the bomb scare. When everything was clear the police opened the road and without any sense or listening to my husbands please to stop I just run with my eldest daughters on my shoulders (not very safe I know) and secured a viewing place just a few meters away from the awning of the Goring through which Kate would get into her wedding car. Just a few minutes later she left the hotel and we actually mangaged to get a glimpse of Kate in her wedding dress and getting into the car. I hope this experience will stay in my daughters live forever, it will certainly with me :-).

Afterwards we had a brilliant celebration at the Rising Sun in Victoria; Mary the landlady made us very welcome with some bubbly and lovely food.

We had a wonderful day that we will remember for a long time :-)

Friday, 11 March 2011

The making of a throw

2011 seems to be the year of custom orders. I really do love my work, but I find custom orders to be the icing of the cake. Custom orders enable you to really engage with your customer and create something that meets the need and taste of that special customer. For me this is truly wonderful.

When I received a request to make a vintage linen throw, I was delighted. My customer had once seen a ray-like design in Italy and wanted to create something similar for a linen bed throw. We agreed on a design that I would screen print onto the linen.

This is its journey - the making of a throw.

1. Drawing the design onto template

2. Cutting out the template

3. The template is finished

4. Ready to print

5. There we go - the printing is done

6. It is done, sewn and ready to go!

I am looking forward to my next custom order :-)

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Stamp happy

You would not think that finding the right stamp for your business correspondence is that difficult. However, I am one of those people that browses websites for days on end until I finally make a decision what to buy. Things just have to be right. When I came across Sarah's beautfiful etsy shop ahueofduckeggblue, I found what I was looking for - wonderful stamps mounted on fabulous olive wood blocks. My stamps arrived this morning in the post and I am delighted. I know I will be using them for a long time :-)