Happy Sunday everyone!
Yes, I know, it's Monday tomorrow, which means we all have to go back to work. I'm relieved to say that I'm only in for two days before taking some annual leave - a much needed break from what often feels like Groundhog Day.
But whilst work has been rather tiresome, this week I've noticed a few firsts. Okay. maybe they aren't anything major, but little things that, when I think about it, show that, whilst making the most of life, I might actually be getting somewhere...
Today is a good day. Not only do I have the day off work, but I’m spending this afternoon in a spa before heading to Brimingham for a weekend of fun and frolics. And the best bit? I have Monday off work too. Woo hoo!
Okay, so Birmingham might not be the obvious choice for a girly weekend away, but with Europe’s largest Christmas fair (so I’ve been told), a thriving nightlife (“Snobs” has been recommended to me – please tell me if you know anywhere better!) and more than a few curry houses to fuel our fun, it is actually looking to be a darn good weekend.
Of course, I’m hoping to do a fair bit of Christmas shopping too. As far as I’m concerned, Christmas shopping is all about finding that perfect something for your nearest and dearest – and if it is something unique, all the better. The next few weeks I’ll be trawling London’s markets in my quest for the perfect gifts for my friends and families – Camden, Greenwich and Spitalfields, look out – but I’ll also be browsing the web too. No, not Amazon, but virtual craft markets like Etsy, notonthehightstreet.com – and of course CRAFTfest.
Yes, I know, I’ve been banging on about if all week on Twitter (and here for a while too) but not only has it given me the opportunity to show case my own work, but it’s also given me loads of ideas for my own shopping too. Obviously I can’t go into detail (you have to wait for Santa to visit!) but I’ve got a few people sorted – and some ideas for a couple more too. And, even though CRAFTfest finishes tomorrow, I should be able to pick up any bits I’ve seen after the event as all items are sold via Etsy and other online shops. Groovy!
Anyhow peeps, I better go – I have a weekend away to pack for and some serious shopping to do...
Well, it’s Saturday night and I’m enjoying a beer whilst I listen to my The Commitments soundtrack (I saw the show last night and LOVED it – but not quite as much as the film) and getting ready for a big night... snuggling under my blanket with a hot chocolate. It would appear that the fun and frolics of my birthday weekend have caught up with me and, coupled with a few late nights this week too (guys, you know who you are!), I’m pretty pooped.
However, that doesn’t mean that I’ve let things slide at Shelly Berry Original. Oh, no.
Today, ladies and gentlemen, is the first day of CRAFTfest, a virtual Christmas market where I am selling some of my art and crafts. This means that I have not only had to get my stall together but have also been promoting my rather rotund behind off! Keep an eye on Twitter to learn more and to see my pick of my fellow crafter’s work – and come back here to check out my special CRAFTfest blog next Saturday, which the lovely guys at Creative Connections will be promoting. Hurrah!
Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go get in my pyjamas and replenish my Kettle Chips bowl. It’s gonna be a long night - and week...
Good morning everyone!
Well I hope you all survived the storm. I admit I was feeling very nervous about it last Sunday when setting up my stall at Merton Abbey Mills Craft Market with my esteemed fellow arty type Laura (click here to check out her stuff!). Luckily, we both survived with nothing more serious than a bit of windburn - and despite the
of a giggle and enjoyed some live music, I for one don't have the time - or the thermals - to become a seasoned stall holder. So I have decided to sign up to CRAFTfest - the virtual craft extravaganza created by Creative Connections. My page is now online here so come and take a look. Craftfest goes live on 16th November so hopefully I'll see a bit more traffic to my Etsy Store - woo hoo!
In the meantime I have been catching up with my chums at Artists Who - and been inspired by their work and their passion for the creative life. I shall be going along to their private view on November 29th to check out their exhibition - and to give myself a kick up the bottom too! If you fancy seeing what they are up to, check them out here - or head over to the Vibe Gallery and Bar, 100 Clements Road SE16 between 28th November - 3rd November.
Have good week folks!
Readers... I have a plan. It isn’t particularly cunning, but it enables me to keep focused on what I want in life and where I want to be. My plan is haphazardly divided into three parts; Plan Part A is to be a published novelist (which I rambled on about last time I blogged), Plan Part B is to pursue my other creative pursuits and Part C is to sort out the rest of my life. Keeping them separate stops me getting too overwhelmed and, most of the time, they bumble along quite nicely without bothering each other. But the other week my desire to buy a flat (a la Plan C) inspired my dream to create things for a living (see Plan B) – and escape the rat race.
You see, when I last looked into it, I discovered that I could just about afford to buy a flat in Walthamstow. Having already explored it a month or two ago, I recently returned to have a look around the Lloyd Park area. I was pleasantly surprised – the surrounding streets looked nice enough, the park itself had a lovely community feel and, to top it off, it was the home of the William Morris Gallery.
I admit that, unlike my mum, Mr Morris’s designs don’t really excite me, but what I love about him and his contemporaries was their creation of the Arts and Crafts Movement – the rejection of mass production in favour of carefully crafted wares made by skilled artisans. It’s a concept I very much admire – and one that I feel is having a bit of a revival at the moment. However, these days, your average person has more free time than the working class Victorian and many of us are embracing craft into our own lives.
Whatever the reason, I will not be defeated! I have already created accounts on both the aforementioned websites and shall be getting some of my stuff on line for people to buy asap. So, if you need a little bit of something different to stuff your stockings with, watch this space... or, if you see something you like on the site, just drop me a line via my contact page and I’ll see what I can do!
Hello there! Sorry it’s been a while but, as usual, I’ve been super busy updating the new website, producing a newsletter (hope you liked it?), applying for not one but TWO secondments at my day job and writing reviews for the recently re-launched Capital Life. Yes, that’s right, another blogging string to my bow! Take a look at www.capital-life.co.uk – and watch this space for further news on what I’ve been up to with their big sister, Urban Life...
Unsurprisingly, all this wonderful work is leaving me a wee bit tired. Last weekend I caught up with a few friends who told me off for taking on so much. Okay, I admit, they may have a point – so I have been making sure that I make time for a bit of R&R too. Last weekend I found myself in a spa and, after a manic hour in the gym, I turned my attention to doing very little other than alternating between the sauna and Jacuzzi, reading my glossy and enjoying views of the Thames with a glass of wine over an admittedly mediocre lunch. By the time my chum joined me at 2pm I was nearly comatose.
Last week I also went to a bonfire and firework display in Wimbledon – a ritual that for me is almost as integral as Christmas when it comes to unleashing my inner child. Fun was also has this Saturday at Biscuit in Greenwich www.biscuit-biscuit.com where I took a bunch of chums pot painting. Despite a bit of a mix-up with our booking, Mr Biscuit himself saved the day and gave us access to his party room downstairs – result! – and I was soon, I quote, “grinning like a child in a sweet shop”. Speaking of results, my (mainly non-artistic) friends amazed me with their wares – take a look for yourself below.
Well, that’s it from me for now. Except – are you at a loose end next Saturday? Fancy a spot of Christmas shopping and a swift pint? Then come and see me at Wonderhill Market www.wonderhillmarket.co.uk in Tooting! I’ll be the one with lots of cushions crying into my mulled cider because no-one has bought anything...
See you there!
and very cool vintage decor. I am tempted to go back just to enjoy the ambience over one of their super thick hot chocolates and a good book - or even for an afternoon of writing. And, if I want a change of scene, I can always pop over the road to Canterbury Court which apparently has space for creatives to get down to business. For a spot of pub grub and a bit of liveliness after a productive day, you could do worse than an evening in the Brown Derby on Clapham Road, too.
So, if you are passing through south London on the Northern Line, stop off at Oval - and,whilst you are there, take a walk down Caldwell Street and say hello to my old flat!
Have a great week everyone - maybe I'll see you at Battersea Park's Bonfire and firework display on Saturday night...
Here you will find my latest news, including what I have been up to and what I have been writing (and making). Hopefully you'll like what I have to say - and perhaps I will motivate you to get creative too...