Monday, 30 May 2016

Holidaying in Brighton

Well, I'm back in Brighton, it's  great  to be back feeling Brighton's bohemian vibes. Sunday was a lovely sunny evening with a nip of a light breeze that was a surprise  as the weather from London looked ominous and  ready to rain.

We stayed at the Travel Lodge, a basic, no frills but it's clean with a comfy bed. The hotel's superb location is a stone throw away from the beach and our room had a sea view, for £40 per night not bad, I guess. My only grumble is breakfast isn't included  but Weatherspoon, a cheap chain pub do bargain breakfasts. Sunday, not a huge amount had happened  we went for drinks in Kemp Town and met with boyfriend's comrades  for drinks. I exchanged photos with one of his union collogues discussing and exchanging our photos.

Unfortunately, during my trip, I didn't feel amazing as I should I experienced some bouts of gastric problems, which meant at the time I felt like crap and needed to find a bathroom where possible. I tried to make the best of a bad situation.


I had a lie in and  had breakfast with the boyfriend before he left for his committee meeting. We departed ways while I met up with Susan, from sewing class.  Susan had also come down to attend the national conference while her other half spent time in meetings with his department. We both exchanged numbers and agreed to meet up.

We had such a fun time look through different shops. We both carried on laughing and suggested things we should purchase. Susan certainly a very bubbly and gregarious person who was former  goth during the late eighties and early nineties. She said she left it by adding more color and adopting a vintage style of polka dots and animal print reminiscing of the 50's and 60's. When we met Susan looked glamorous like she came out of the fifties French Rivera donning a blue and white polka do dress with her round rim sunglasses.

 It was really fun as we have quite a number things in common and it was nice socialising outside of sewing. We started by heading to Kemp Town eyeing up the different charity shops and this area tends to be the cheapest place for them. We didn't find much, I came across a gorgeous black gypsy skirt, sadly it was too small. By the time we looked through the all the shop I saw the Boyfriend with his  mate and end up at a local bar for drinks, The bar had all sorts of oddities with retro games used as tables and ties all over it. So they chatting about life and union subjects. 

Afterward, we had a look in Kemp town, we headed for the independent and bohemian shops of the lanes, we had a look through the fabric shops and in the vintage shops. In one of the shops, was almost of a vintage supermarket with an array of things. however, I was surprised at how reasonably priced the items were in compared to other shops. I end up purchasing some vintage hand made lace and machine made. We found one of the fabric shops where I purchased some remnants to make a summer top. We continued to the last fabric shop on the agenda where I purchased a variety of lace and fabric to make a skirt. 

After long arduous afternoon we treated ourselves to a sit-down and some amazing ice cream . 

My finds 


In afternoon once feeling better, I ventured to Preston Manor, a Georgian manor home to the    family. After researching events to do, I came  across an exhibition about Modern Day Witchcraft. On the first impression, I thought it would explore the folklore and original of witchcraft but it was more about how modern day witchcraft had evolved. The exhibition also focuses on the influence and impact Doreen Valiente had on modern paganism. 

There was a small section dedicated to the original  ancient paganism and the influences the Romans had on it. How the spread of Christianity eventually led to the demise of the of paganism and led to the persecution of innocent people and execution of thousands.How  the occult and paganism practices had gained a resurgence of interest in the eighth century and nineteen century. I think for practitioners of the paganism it would be of interest to explore how paganism regained interest.   

The boyfriend met up after the conference spending time relaxing in the hotel room. So we went to a local Italian we visited previously it's cheap but serves amazing food. We wonder around the Pavilion so I could take a few photos of the Pavilion I got some amazing of the Pavilion lit up it looked quite magical. We headed to another pub where we coincidentally met up with Susan and her group, We had a fun night discussing about the conference.


I had lain in and  felt unmotivated by the overcast clouds. I went to explore the area ofBrighton for charity shopping. I cut through the Pavillion while looking through by chance I came by someone  painting watercolors of the pavilion which look stunning. We stood chatting for a bit and I headed to explore the part off of  Brighton.

I even came the open market I came across Steampunk Bazaar  ran by the delightfully chatty  and fantastic  Trixie. Who specializes mainly in steampunk, however,there was  an array of romantic goth clothing. For me, it was a gem of a find as most of the other alternative shops were either incredibly hippish, pastel goth or vintage, so not to my somber tastes.  I got talking to Trixie. about the Brighton's alternative scene. I was surprised to find out that the scene was declining and there was limited number amount of music venues.  I started chatting about a lack of Goth shops and trends  around how sewing and charity shops had become the main way of funding my wardrobe. It was nice to find a more traditional goth clothing.  I spend loads of time chatting. to her. 

For a while, I've wanted to purchase a new underbust and saw a red brocade one, that reduced at a bargain price of £40 it felt great heavy and rather robust. I tried it on and knew I had to purchase it.

Also, I promised to mention about the shop if your ever Brighton I highly recommend visiting the Steampunk Bizzar.


After my journey, I had relaxed and went to sit and  photographed the beach and the pier. I went to dip my toes in the sea it was freezing and the pebbles were hurting my feet. Like typical me I ended finding someone to chat with on the beach. We had a long lengthy discussion about life putting the world to rights. We discussed the local politics of Brighton and the influences of the Green Party. Parts of the conversation ended up about us chatting the seagulls on the beach.


Thursday was the first day, that I felt better to the last week. I decided to take a slow walk to the Brighton Marina. Also, Thursday appeared to best day to walk as the weather looked fantastic. I had a slow walk along the beach side taking in the sea air and photographing the beach. After my long walk, I opted to have breakfast at the Marina after the long walk I felt my stomach grumbling  for food and ate a full English  breakfast. 

Surprisingly,  I  managed to encourage the boyfriend to a spot of crazy golf. Since the boyfriend is potentially a vampire he has to shun sunlight in case he explodes into flames.  Instinctually, I knew the boyfriend would win as he applies his mathematical genius to get the ball into the hole.  During the game, I managed to avoid the hitting the ball into the hole by hitting the ball to the opposite side of the course. Fortunately,  no one hurt. The boyfriend has refused to play golf with me as he feels I'm  too dangerous and will only play on the condition if wears body armorer. 

Thursday, 19 May 2016

Saturday Night Crafting

This weekend was the tenth annual Tyne and Wear Late show. The late show  takes place across Newcastle and Gateshead, where over seventy arts cultural and heritage venues  open after hours. The venues host an array of events including, workshops tours, parties, and performances from local artists. 

The last few years, I haven't really attended the late night shows, over the last few years, unfortunately. The late show offers a fantastic alternative to just going drinking to the pub. Recently, I've been turning into a hermit and preferring to stay at home with a cuppa tea. I have such an exciting life of crafting staying at home, watching tv and going to places. 
The event suited my rock and roll style. 

My first  late show event  at  St Mary's heritage centre, where the group was taken around tour of the church's graveyard and taught about the history of people interned in the cemetery. I loved this and attending the tour at night enhanced the haunted atmosphere. 

St Mary's

I attended Saturday night events, I planned first attend Bensham Grove, I love supporting this place as it's where I attend my sewing classes on Wednesday.  After reading the brief descriptions of the venues, Bensham Grove had the most interesting it was holding different works shops to try out.  In comparison, the others were more tours and viewing artworks.

I intended to permit myself an hour at Bensham Grove, I became engrossed with the different workshops going on I end up leaving at 10:30 not permitting myself enough time to attend others. 

They had three different crafts to trail at no additional cost and they had  beverages on the sale.  The crafts keep in traditions of Bensham Grove which has also been central to incorporating arts and crafts of William Morris and open to the Brothers of the Pre-Raphaelite painters. 

I arrived started looking through the hall it was great to see the gardens in the  late spring evening, especially the small garden with two cats  sitting  in the garden.

I went to the small annex where the stained glass was made, and I attempted to try out do etching on glass. I chose a leaf as I love any natural shapes,particularly the leaf shapes. I first covered it with film and etched the design into the glass using a sharp blade. I placed acid paste was placed onto the glass, which highlighted the shape. I rubbed various colors into the  glass. 


I went to the large room where my sewing classes commence where they were crocheting  flower broaches and making papers flowers. I first attempting to crochet a flower, and I  found it difficult do as I was learning new techniques, but the tutor ended up completing the rest the crochet. The tutor suggested using dark red wool  to complement my outfit.  

One of my favorite things was attempting the papercrafts where I made a flower out of papers and the roses the were simply to make by ripping . The foldable flowers was a more diffcult and fiddly to completing. The rose I made I attached to a stick I found outside and glued a button.

Thursday, 12 May 2016

Visiting Seaham

Today, I ventured from Newcastle Upon Tyne to the small seaside town of  Seaham in country Durham . The journey was tedious, again that what happens with  public transport, and yet,  surprisingly easy to get to; with a metro ride to the rival city of Sunderland, and  a 25-minute journey on the 60 operating every ten minutes.

 I got the idea when a friend suggested we should visit as Seaham at some point to go beachcombing for glass. Until 1921, Seaham used to be one of the largest glass producers in Britain, and then the industry ceased. Seaham's beaches often have the waste glass washed up on its shores, which has lead to a boom of a cottage industry producing unique, colourful jewellery.

Also, the idea appealed  to me perfectly as an avid skip rat and collector of anything shiny or interesting,  I'm a nightmare for picking up rubbish. With the allure of the unusually  bright and sunny day for the UK. I couldn't resist the lure to venture forth. I fancied doing something different compared to going to the charity shops and there didn't appear to be any groups of interest occurring that day. 

The day started out bright and sunny then as I headed nearer to my destination the sun had disappeared with a coverage of clouds and looking overcast with the bit of blue sky peeking through the clouds. 

 I was happy to sitting on my mat and eating my sarnies and cake.

Me sitting having food 
I stayed sitting taking in nature sensations: the wave battering against the rocks, the seagull calls, and a bird's chirping. Took the opportunity for to take the photos. After sitting for a while, I started doing some combing I didn't find anything too amazing but it's still a fun afternoon.

Some of my photo from the beach: 

My finds from the beach below. My favourite has to be the trapezium glass piece I'm considering  making  a necklace, and turning some of the beads into earrings 

I started to get cold and looked at around the town centre I left with a small strawberry plant and a hair clamp.

My Saturday

For the last few months, I've been searching for a crochet and knitting groups, to no avail, I found none that fitted with work.  I felt the urge to uptake knitting again. After seeing a summer hat crochet pattern, I fancied learning to crochet.  I saw a notice advertising a knitting group.

Last week was my first time attending the group. I was showed the different crochet techniques. I picked up the skills quite quickly, however I need more practice, I started off  practising chains and ambitiously, I attempted to make a small coaster, which turned into a wizard hat for my dragon. 

The group is held within the art shop, the Chilli Bizarre. The shop is linked to the Chilli Studios, it's a nonprofit organisation that supports people with mental health issues by enhancing their lives through arts and crafts. The products are sold in the shop and profits are split between the organisation  and the artists. The group costs nothing to attend but the people contribute money for the beverages, which goes back into the organisation.

Everyone in the group was very cordial, welcoming and supportive. They all appear to be very creative and craft orientated. One of the volunteers attend along with her daughter, who is only eight, but can already crochet, often makes dolls and flowers. One the other volunteers was a professional seamstress designing and making wedding dresses. I found I had  a lot in common with the group  and main chatted about personal creative pursuits.

My flask holder 

The second week, I took my knitting, as I'm attempting to make a flask holder when I go to Brighton. I've attempted to knit and completed a few lines and had enough so, I opted to crochet and re-attempted to make a coaster.  I had a lot of help crocheting.
My crochet coaster

I went to my Mam's; we had a cup of tea and caught up about her holiday to Malta, I didn't stay long because she was on night shift. 

I met the boyfriend at his mate's house, and  they all described the nightmarish experience of completing the  project. Afterwards, we all  went out  to the local pub, and for a well-earnt pint for the lads arduous work. After getting the first round of drinks the guys gathered  around the pool table to play against each other. I sat on table by myself scoffing some cake and kept occupied with my knitting, I ended up with some odd and quizzical looks 

The boyfriend offered me to play a few games of pool, and I agreed. I enjoy playing pool but  playing with the boyfriend it's a novice going against a professional. Surprisingly, I won both games by default, I think the boyfriend let me win. 

My Outfit 

Oh yeah, I've dyed my hair burgundy red as I fancied some colour and felt too lazy to bleach my hair. 
Top - Next - Charity shop 
Skirt- Made by me 
PVC Boots-  Primark 
Bag - Charity shop
Jewellery - Maltese silver

A close-up of necklace and earrings

Life Update.

Hi, it's been a very long hiatus, not to say the least. Since my last post, a lot happened in October. I had a death in the family ...