The Vintage Suitcase






Today I met up with one of my besties for a wander round the vintage fair in Buxton. As I’m currently saving for a deposit to buy a house it was Katie’s job to make sure that I stuck to  budget and she did a fantastic job. I could have come home with loads of goodies but instead I managed to be sensible and just bought a few pieces of fabric and then went for lunch at Pizza Express. Katie kindly bought me the mirror as an early birthday present and at £5 for 6 large off cuts of liberty fabric, £4 for a meter of the dog fabric and £10 for around two meters of the peacock fabric it would of been silly for me not to invest in my stash. I’m really pleased with my purchases and have already started to think about the bags that I’m going to make with the fabric. The liberty prints are going to be turned into pockets on a series of iPad cases and the dog print is going to be made into a laundry bag.

As you can see from my pictures there were loads of stall holders at the fair and plenty for me to buy, the home wears section was amazing! As the fair was run by The Vintage Suitcase who are based in Derbyshire I will definitely be keeping an eye on their websites for future events.

The Dome is part of Buxton College, which is an area that I look after for work, I am lucky enough to spend a few days a week working in this magnificent building. It really is an inspirational place and I feel lucky every day that I drive there. Myself and Katie are returning in two weeks time for a spa day and I can’t wait!



Thursday sewing club: I finished my first handbag!

Ideas Pouch

Ideas Pouch

On Thursday I made it back to the bag . I skipped last weeks session as I had been driving hundreds of miles that week for work and combined with the heat wave I was exhausted. Although I was shattered again this Thursday (I’m not sleeping well) I forced myself to go and was really glad I did.

During this weeks class not only did I finished the reversible bag from week 1, I started and completed the ideas pouch which was designed by


Although the course is geared towards sewing handbags being a techy I’ve asked if I can bring in a pattern for a laptop bag  next week to make and the tutor has agreed! Only problem is I’ve already been scouring the internet for patterns for over an hour and can’t make my mind up. Do you have any suggestions?

Sewing and the industrial revolution

Now that I have a bit of money in my pocket I’m making the most of it and am regularly booking on to sewing courses to improve my skills. This Saturday saw me attend the beginners quilting class at Quiltessential.  

I discovered this class a while ago whilst researching things to do once I moved back to Derbyshire. As soon as I discovered this class I got a little giddy and booked a place straight away. As Cromford contains a canal and lots of picinic spots I have been there many times as a youngster so I knew the class would be set in beautiful surroundings. However the reason for my excitement was the location of the class which is hosted at Arkwrights Mill in Cromford – not only was Sir Richard Arkwright, who built the mills, a pioneer of the industrial revolution the mill that the class was held in is famous for giving birth to the UK’s factory system. As that mill was used for textile production being able to take a sewing class their was a fantastic experience and one I hope to repeat many times. I already have my eye on one of their bag making courses. *Im obsessed with bag making as not only do they make fantastic presents and products to sell their also practical. I’m not  a ‘girly girl’ so the practical and therefore useful elements make sewing ok.


As part of the course we made a patch work cushion and although I tried to match the fabric to my new tattoo I think my colour choices could be improved. I’m really proud of how the piece turned out, especially when it’s compared to my disastrous attempts when I bought my first sewing machine last August.

Quiltessential beginners

Thursday sewing club

Hello friends, I hope you’ve had a good weekend. With Saturday being an absolute scorcher I spent the day inside hiding from the sun, I think I’m the only person who spends all summer pinning for winter. As today was a little cooler I ventured into the garden to take pictures of the bag that I’ve been sewing as part of a five week bag making course at The Craft Studio in Nottingham

As the first class was this week we started out making a ‘simple’ reversable bag. Well it seemed to be simple for the others but due to my dodgey cutting skills the handles on my bag ended up way too thin so I started it again on Friday. I gave v.1 of the bag to my mum, she’s a lot less fussy than me and has tied the handle material together and used it today to carry her work stuff.

At Thursdays class we’re going to learn how to sew the handles together. I have looked at the pattern and contemplated having a go myself but I don’t want to end up ruining my first handmade handbag so I’m going to hold fire and finish it off later this week.

I’m loving the course, as I’ve never had sewing lessons before I’m getting to learn lot of new techniques and really useful tips. However the style of the bag isn’t really me, of course I’ll use it a few times so that I can brag that I MADE IT but as red’s my grandma’s favourite colour ultimately it’s going to end up as her bag.

By the way I’ve just bought my first DSLR and am still getting the hang of it so I apologise for the blurry images.



Handmade reversible bag

Very Purple Person Reversible Bag


My new tattoo

Yesterday I posted about my personal challenge to publish a blog post on each of the remaining days in July. Well today’s day two of the challenge and this is my second post – win!

I had the day off today so that I could go and get my first ever tattoo. I went for the consultation months ago but chickened out at the last minute but now felt like the right time and I’m so glad that I finally had it done. It looks fantastic!

As I wanted a tattoo that had a personal meaning I decided on a dove theme. I’ve suffered from quite serious mental health problems for the last 16 years, as doves are a symbol of peace I’m hoping that when I’m ‘going over the edge’ looking at this will help to calm me down. After much Googling below is the only image that inspired me as i like the mix of aztec and henna styles.


Due to copy-write issues the tattooist wouldn’t let me have an exact copy which I’m glad about now as after changing the design many times I finally approved a version which was  is perfect for me. The original designs felt too girly.

Before and after

Before and after

Blue, which is my favourite colour, is known for it’s calming properties so based on the purpose of the tattoo it felt fitting that the outline and parts of the shading were in blue tones. I decided to contrast this with yellow as I  have always found this to be a really happy colour, the contrast also reminds me of the sea and the sun/ the sky and the sun which are images that always make me feel at piece.

Do you have a tattoo? What is the story behind yours and why is it special to you?



I’m back and with Granny Holty in tow!

Although the blog is still under construction, I need a new a new photo for my about me page and I have a few illustration ideas that I’d like to add, I want to get back into the swing of writing and creating therefore I’m setting myself the challenge of writing a post a day for the rest of this month. I bought my first Digital SLR camera today, am having my first tattoo tomorrow and start a bag making course on Thursday so I should have lots to post about 🙂

Today I’m going to share with you another first – my first Etsy shop.  After a relationship breakdown I secured a new job and have just moved back to my mothers – I’ve been back for around five weeks and we’re both still alive so I’ll take it as a success as we don’t get along. A few weeks ago I discovered a draw full of my Grandma’s old costume jewellery which was discarded when she moved into a nursing home. After taking a few keepsakes I’ve decided to sell the rest as I’d rike them to continue to be worn rather than sitting in a draw gathering dust. In honour of my gran the shop’s called Granny Holty and next to every piece of jewellery their’s the story of why my Grandmother bought it, such as the cat brooch which combines her favourite type of pet with her favourite colour.


For my most of my life my Grandma had red hair and although she’s rocking silver fox look nowadays she still has a wardrobe full of red handbags and clothes.

Granny Holty

Granny Hotly