Tuesday, 27 July 2010

Moving to Pastures New

I have wrestled with this site for some time now. As a blog it was fine, but I wanted a website that was a destination point for all of my web based shenanigans and unfortunately this was never going to be it!

I tried, I really did to follow Hilary Haptree' s blogging tips, but it was no use. They did not make any sense in the pea sized part of my brain reserved for computer jargon.

Then I happened upon a free website hosting service which I thought I would give a try (quite reservedly at first as it wouldn't be the first time I had tried to use a 'template' website to no avail).

But Lo and Behold! It is ruddy fantastic! I know have everything I could possibly want (for the time being) under one banner at my shiny new website.

I have absolutely no idea how to import this blog into my new blog so I am here to tell all my lovely shiny followers that you can continue to follow me at www.grannyruth.webs.com were you can find out how to shop, tweet, facebook and blog with Granny Ruth! You can even sign up and become a member and be emailed with updates! It's so exciting! What are you waiting for?

I'm off over there now....

Who wants to join me?

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

The Postie brought a Present....

I have been growing my own for many years now, so much so I pride my self with being the instigator of many of my friends new found passion for growing their own too. I used to have an allotment until we moved to our current house and I couldn't keep up with the overgrown garden and the allotment too. The one thing I always grow is tomatoes. Love them. Love the smell of the plants. But not this year. I have been so busy, I just never got around to planting those little seeds. This made me sad.


I was just sitting down for a cup of tea around eleven o'clock when the familiar rattle of the letter box went. Look what the postie brought me!

The lovely Sarah of Noah's Ark Crafts has been growing hundreds of tomato plants with the seeds she got from BBC Dig In Campaign and has very generously been sharing her well grown bounty with her twitter friends. She sent me a very expertly packaged parcel containing six tomato plants, and nestled in between them, I also found a bonus couple of what looks like pepper plants, and another teeny weeny tomato. They have now been potted up and are resting their very weary roots in a tray of water.

I am now very much looking forward to lots of lovely tomatoes this summer with great thanks to Sarah and her generosity!

Friday, 12 March 2010

Folksy Friday

A lot of my lovely Folksy friends do a 'Folksy Friday' which if you've had your head under a stone for the last couple of years is the day we show off a few of our favourite Folksy items usually with a theme.

I have been itching to take part in the Folksy Friday tradition but there is soooooo much lovely stuff I like and I couldn't think of a theme, until last night when I saw a lovely listing by Birdcage Creative and then I knew! So, after my giveaway last week here is my first Folksy Friday with a lovely spring daffodil theme.

From Top

Spring Daffodil Necklace £11 by Birdcage Creative
Daffodil Earrings £8.50 by Wychbury
Free Machine Embroidered Daffodil Cushion £35 by Maxemilia
Yellow Roses - Original Watercolour Painting £155 by Dick & Franny
Daff-Oh-Dilly £1.50 by Hannah Madden
Spring Daffodils £22 by Fleurs De Perles
Fine Silver Daffodil £45 by Willow Wire Creations

Monday, 8 March 2010

Slave Bread

Today my slaves... er... I mean my children decided they wanted to do some cooking, so instead of the usual fairy cakes I thought bread would be a whole lot more useful, and considerably more interactive!

The recipe we used was from 'The Ultimate Cooking Book by Jane Bull (pub DK), so is very simple to use but with little fuss could be jazzed up with herbs or olives or sun dried tomatoes. This is a fab childrens cookery book, and as my daughter is now 8, she can do everything in here with very little help (interference) from an adult.

750g 1 1/2 lb strong white bread flour
450ml 3/4 pint warm water
1 tspn salt
2 tblspn oil
7g (1 sachet) easy blend yeast
1 egg (optional) to glaze.

makes 8 large or 10 smaller rolls.

1. Put all the ingredients except the egg in a large bowl and mix them together.

2. Sprinkle the worktop with flour and take the mixture out of the bowl.

3. To knead, press your fist hard into the dough, then turn it and do it again.

4. Knead for 10 minutes. The dough should be stretchy, not sticky.

5. Divide the dough into smaller pieces or pull off chunks to plat with.

6. Choose a design, try making faces!

7. Set the oven to 220 degrees C/ Gas Mark 7

8. Place rolls on a greased baking tray making sure you place the shapes as far away from each other as possible.

9. Cover the tray loosely with clingfilm and leave it in a warm place. Leave it until it's double it's size, approx 30 minutes.

10. Brush the bread with beaten egg and decorate with nuts, seeds and dried fruit if desired.

11. Bake for 10-20 mins. The smaller shapes will cook quicker, so take them out sooner.

The kids had so much fun making these, the squidgy dough making part was great, and then their artistic side was won over by fashioning bread rolls into all sorts of shapes. We had hedgehogs, ladybirds and even a cat! Funny faces and wiggly worms too! And I have to say, it was so tasty, I might have to force them to make some more!

And the winner is.....

Firstly I would like to say thank you to everyone who entered the giveaway. It really exceeded my expectations, and I loved reading about every one's favourite flowers! It has given me food for thought, a lot of ideas, and you never know maybe one day you could purchase a felty version of your favourite flowers!

So last night before I went to bed (couldn't help it, too excited to sleep (sad but true)), I very scientifically picked a winner at random! I wrote every one's names on a bit of paper, tore it into strips and folded, put them all in my magic name calling pot (plant pot), shook them up, closed my eyes and picked........

Sarah of Noah's Ark Crafts! Well done to you!

I will be contacting Sarah today but thank you again to all who entered!


Thanks to everyone who entered the giveaway! I have been really overawed by how many people entered. I never expected to have so many new followers, so thanks to you all for the follow, and as it is quite late I'm going to bed and I will announce the winner tomorrow!

Monday, 1 March 2010

Spring is Sprung!

Hello everybody! I've been very busy this past month (as always) and not had time to blog or sit and mooch on the internet, so as it is today officially SPRING, and St Davids Day I thought I would have a little competition to celebrate, and what better prize that my new daffodil brooch which I finished at the weekend!

These brooches will soon be available in my Folksy Shop and make great spring gifts. Mothers Day, Easter alternatives to chocolate, and just a lovely treat to cheer yourself up after the grey winter months!

To win one of your very own, all you need to do is (if you haven't already) click to follow my blog, tweet about this competition, and leave a comment below telling me what your favourite flower is, and why! You never know, one day it might even be immortalised in felt! The competition ends on Sunday 7th March at 12pm. Good luck!

Monday, 1 February 2010

My First Feature!

After a mad dash with the kids to school, I came back home through the sprinkling of snow we had overnight to be greeted by some excited tweets from my crafty Folksy friends, so I headed over to the Folksy Weddings blog to have a look!

And here it is! My first feature! And I must say a big thank you to the fabulous Anna at EvieGeorge for considering me, I had never thought of using my pin pots as wedding favours or table pieces before! Just goes to show you how other people look at the world with a different slant on it!

So, if you happen to be getting married this summer, keep me in mind. You could always use my rose brooches as corsages as well!

Friday, 29 January 2010

Ta Daaaaaaaa

I have nothing more to say than this.....

I have finished my accounts, and I have filed my tax return.

*breathes a huge sign of relief and goes to put the kettle on*

Will some one PLEASE tell me to start in April next time?

Saturday, 16 January 2010

Felty Flowers

I thought you might like to have a little look see at my new pin cushions. I am very excited about them. They are all based on actual flowers, have a see if you recognise any. You can have a sneak preview before they actually make their way onto Folksy! I can't list them yet as I am waiting for my packaging to arrive. Yawn! Been a week now!
This one is based on the common daisy. The cheery little flower that grows in the lawn.

This one is based on the Aster. A relative of the daisy.

And this one is based on Rudbekia. One of my favourite flowers.

Friday, 15 January 2010

New Beginnings

The lovely winter wonderland is a distant memory now, and everything is turning into a distasteful grey slush. We are only just beginning to get back into our routine. The kids schools have been opening late and closing early, which really doesn't help the creative process, and the impending need to finish off tax returns is getting greater.

I on the other hand would rather be making things. At the moment I am bouncing between Valentines (which I have to admit, I'm not very good at), and starting up some of my new ideas, which I am very excited about. My new pin cushions were an idea born of necessity. Before Christmas I was lamenting my lack of pin cushion (I only had a fiddly magnetic tray - very annoying), as I was making some decorations, so I decided to quickly run one up! Using up some handy discs of felt I had already cut out made me think of a daisy, so one thing lead to another and I was sewing petals around the edge and sticking it in a little terracotta pot Ginger No1 had painted at a party.

So this is a photo of my prototype pin cushion. I am still using it now, and it is working very well.

It has undergone some major structural changes since then, adding a board in the bottom to stop the pins poking all the way through, and generally neatening up, and I am very pleased with the final item. Keep an eye out on Flickr and in my Folksy shop for the new super improved version!
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Sunday, 10 January 2010

A New Year, a New Start

Well, it has been a very long time since I last blogged. Christmas was a very busy time, making stuff for my Folksy shop, making stuff for commissions, and lastly making Christmas presents! I was very tired towards the end, surviving on approx 3-4 hrs of sleep a night. But all was well in the end, although I did forget to give out some cards to neighbours, oops! Never mind, I can keep those until next Christmas!

My first three months as a Folksy Seller went amazingly well, much better than I could have imagined. It has fuelled my desire to continue making and selling. This is my job, and I really don't ever want to go back to working in retail!

I have to say a big thank you to my lovely friend Mel. If it wasn't for her pushing me (I do need a swift kick every now and then) I wouldn't have made a single thing to sell. So here's to Mel.

I have lots of plans for 2010. I am currently sourcing recycled felt from the very lovely Jenny and Joe at http://www.folksy.com/shops/thefeltedrainbow They are very helpful, so pop over and give their felt a try. As my current stocks dwindle I will be replacing my packaging with some biodegradable alternatives. I already package my cards in biodegradable bags made from corn starch, but now I have found packing foam made from potato starch!

2010 also brings plans to open a new shop on Folksy. Red Kite Ceramics will hopefully be open for business in the next couple of months. Feedback from the Folksy Forums is very positive, so hopefully, time allowing, making will commence and something will be happening soon!