Monday, 20 September 2010

Isle of Man

Many thanks to the Women's Institute for hosting me last week in the Isle of Man. I was thrilled to hear that my talk and workshop were well-received. For my part, I really enjoyed seeing the island, meeting everyone and learning all about the local crafts. I've become a fan of Manx patchwork, an ultra speedy way of making a blanket with a "needs must" attitude. Watch this space for a few step-by-step instructions! Honestly, you might even be able to get one made by Christmas.

At last...!

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

40 hats in 3 hours

So whilst normal people were having a fun night out with friends a week last Friday, or indeed relaxing at home with a glass of wine, I was carting two suitcases of hat-making stuff across Paris after already having done a very early shift at the BBC in London. But it was all for a very good cause! I was booked to make hats the following day at the wedding of Jean Francois Piege, who's chef at Paris's hottest new restaurant Thoumieu. Until recently he was chef at The Crillon Hotel's Les Ambassadeurs, where he earned himself two michelin stars. He's the Gordon Ramsey of France apparently, so the wedding was rather an incredible event. It was held at a chateau 40km or so outside the city, and there were lots of famous Gallic types milling around - although being English, I was blissfully unaware of who was who. I had to make 40 hats in around 3 hours for some of the female guests - who were then able to party the night away in a little bespoke creation by moi! I was really looking forward to having a taste of the food - but sadly I was assigned to the servant's quarters - boo hoo!!! It was a real experience - and I absolutely LOVED the couples' car - especially the hat-boxes which were used instead of mundane tin cans. Tres chic - non?!

My friends' Scottish caravan plan

The friends who have caused my caravan envy have started a detailed blog so you can keep up to date with their make-do-and-mend journey. Follow their progress as they make a cosy and stylish bolt-hole out of the rather ramshackle shell.....bagsy stay there before you do!!