The Bothered Owl

Alex and Sarah's crafty corner of cyberspace

Clapton Festival June 10, 2011

Filed under: markets — thebotheredowl @ 7:48 am
Tags: ,

Next stop on the rolling juggernaut that is the Summer Market Round-up is a new one for us: Clapton Festival

This Saturday Alex and Scott will be heading off bright and early to Clapton to tout our shiny goods to the lovely folk attending Clapton Festival Market.

We just got sent through a flyer for the event and it looks utterly amazing.



And that’s just the first page! There’ll be food – LOADS of fantastic looking cakes and plenty of options for veggies and vegans (not that I am in ANY way biased!) There’ll be vintage stalls, accessories, crafts people, local information stalls and lots of stuff for the mini people to do as well. Plus there’s a classical music concert in St John’s and a dub reggae gig in the Round Chapel nearby. All in all it looks fairly darn fabulous.

If you’re thinking of heading along, it gets started at 12 and runs until around 4pm, in the gardens of St John-at Hackney Church. There’s a google map here.

If you do decide to swing by and spend your afternoon browsing the fabulousness, make sure you go and say hello to Alex and Scott!




Brockley to the Max June 5, 2011

Filed under: markets — thebotheredowl @ 11:36 pm
Tags: , ,

This is the second year in a row that we’ve taken part in Brockley Max as vendors. This year was a little different, in that Alex and Scott did all the work and I spent the afternoon wandering around after the kids and taking in the atmosphere.

A very cute, napping, impediment to ever getting anything done!

Elias makes it a little awkward to work on the stall so instead I got to take lots of pictures and soak up the sunshine.

Bibs and purses looking purty in the sunshine

Hats galore

The stall looked beautiful, set up under some trees to take advantage of the shade. It gets pretty hot up there on the top of the hill but the trees by the stone circle make the perfect spot to lay out a stand. Unfortunately the hats didn’t stay out too long as there was a hefty wind that made things a leetle difficult, but they did look lovely in the sunshine.

Beautiful brightly coloured cufflinks

We had our usual array of Lego finery on display. I really like what Alex has done with the backing cloth for the stall. She found a load of lovely crushed velvet/velveteen in one of the local fabric shops and it makes a great background for the Lego in particular. I think the dark background really makes the colours POP!

Our new jewellery stands

Lovely organic design jewellery tree

We were also trying out these gorgeous new stands that Alex found. Aren’t they great? A really lovely organic shape to them.

I also got to chat a bit to some of the other stall holders which was lovely. Normally when we’re working on a market there’s fairly limited opportunities to actually get to check out other peoples’ work.

Thai massage in the open air

Brightly coloured dresses and lovely local photos

Two stalls in particular caught my eye and I took the chance to have a chat with the owners about their work.

First up was the stall next to us, run by Pinky Sidhu. Like us, Pinky’s a knitter, but she works with wire and beads, including precious stones.

A really creative way of displaying some thoroughly beautiful jewellery

I’m totally fascinated by knitting with wire so it was interesting to chat with Pinky about what she does. She said the most common question she gets is about what type of stitches she uses to create the ‘fabric’.  No matter what stitch you use, it ends up looking the same.

So tactile.

I particularly love the lapis lazuli earrings.

I love the airiness and illusion of fragility created by the space between the stitches.

The other stall that really captured me was run by a lovely gentleman called Phoesbus Apostolides. Phoebus is a photographer but he also makes lovely fine silver jewellery.

Beautiful glass earrings. I love the silver knots above the beads.

Fabulous curves

This pair were my favourite. I love the combination of the bell shape with those long sinuous curves. I’d feel like a temple priestess strutting around with them hanging from my ears!

Phoebus works with a type of clay called precious metal clay. He molds it to the precise shape he wants, then bakes it in a kiln. Once hardened it becomes silver. He also works with a gold version as well, which he applies over the top of the silver clay to add a touch of additional colour.

A lovely ring

Unlike gold leaf, the gold PMC won’t wear away because it’s baked into the other clay. I rally loved Phoebus’ work and again it’s so interesting to get to speak to the craft person about what they do and hear how passionate they are about it.

The rest of my afternoon was spent like this:

Balloon swords for the win!

Orlaith enjoying the company of a charming local fire officer.

Esme was slightly bemused by the whole experience.

The main event of the afternoon for both of them was the craft tent. Last year they were both a bit too young to really get into it but this year was crafty bliss for them.

Completely focussed on their work

Adding some embellishments


Esme said she was painting a picture of the Tsunami. Or as she pronounces it 'the Salami'.


It's all fun and games...

And there you have it. There was also music, food, cider, large amounts of bubble blowing and some hunting for lions in the long grass at the bottom of the stone circle. And lots of people enjoying the sunshine and hanging out in the park. A fine end to Brockley Max for this year, I think.

As for Elias, he napped through the whole thing but seemed pretty pleased with the experience.

Two very enthusiastically and uncontrollably waving thumbs up from the youngest owlet




Brockley Max Art in the Park June 2, 2011

Filed under: markets — thebotheredowl @ 9:01 pm

This Saturday is Brockley Max’s Art in the Park. It will be held in Hilly Fields near the stone circle. This will be the second year that we will be at this event. Last year was a lovely day sitting in the sunshine listening to some excellent music and selling our wares.  This year promises to be just as much fun and and we’ll be there from 12-5pm.

Last Year's Stall

There are a number of activities happening in Hilly Fields, details available by clicking here. Also on there are details of all the activities happening during the Brockley Max Festival.

Hope you can join us.


London in Stitches June 1, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — thebotheredowl @ 11:16 am

For Knit Nation 2011, we have teamed up with Joy of The Knitting Goddess and Anna of OneHandKnits for a very special collaboration.


You can find the details by clicking on the tab in the top right corner, or here

The London in Stitches set


Completion May 17, 2011

Filed under: General Crafty Chat — thebotheredowl @ 6:00 am
Tags: ,

Ooh lookit, lookit, I actually finished making something!

It’s the second pair of socks I’ve made as part of ORASH (Operation Replace All Socks with Handmade. Still not sure why it’s not ORAWSH but then I am an enormous pedant and it’s not my invention! And ORASH sounds like Oh, rash, which in hindsight signing up to knit a lot of handmade socks while being …ahem… snuggled by 3 small people, 2 cats, a husband and a handcrafting business may have been. Also, did I mention I am completely sleep deprived? Hence this very long run[on sentence filled aside! Roll on the caffeine, people. *twitches*)

Strange cloven hoof style toes

The pattern I chose was Hedera by Cookie A. I really like it. You get these lovely, almost architectural, columns of twisted stitches and lacy holes. Very graceful feeling.

Obligatory sideways pointy toe shot

I altered the toe somewhat, opting for a round toe construction rather than a wedge toe as written in the pattern. I’ve been wanting to try one out for ages because my socks always wear out at the side of the toe, where all the decrease stitches are. Round toes don’t have that little line of decrease stitches so I want to see if these wear out less quickly.

They look a little strange, slightly like I’m hiding a pair of cloven hooves in there.

But they’re very comfy, no pressure on my toes at all and I would probably use a round toe again.

I definitely recommend the book and this pattern in particular.

And now, bring me the caffeine, people. BRING IT.



The Create Place May 5, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — thebotheredowl @ 9:14 pm

The Create Place is a fabulous new project being run in east London (Bethnal Green). It is a space that aims to bring crafters, artists, learners and shoppers together. They run workshops, offer space for people to drop in and learn skills, run craft-based parties and evening functions, and sell hand-crafted items.

When I saw The Create Place calling for crafters to sell in their pop-up shop for Mother’s Day, I knew I had to be involved. I popped along for a chat with Jill, the creative force behind The Create Place. There was a lovely vibe about the place – light, airy, and full of crafty knowledge just bursting to be shared.

As I am selling stuff in the shop, I will also work in the shop as part of the collective idea to keep the place running. I did my first shift there on Monday, and I had a lovely time. The shop was pretty quiet being a Bank Holiday, but I kept myself busy with chatting to another volunteer Andrea, and by wiring lots of Lego.

I’ll be heading back to the shop on May 22nd and 29th. If you’re in the area, swing by and say hello!

Alex 🙂


Oops! May 2, 2011

Filed under: Life — thebotheredowl @ 10:16 am
Tags: ,

It has just been pointed out that I’ve not actually told anyone officially what the new owlet’s name is. Very remiss of me.

Come on, mother. The suspense is killing me.

He rejoices in the name of Elias Pelham Goldzieher Leavesley.

Goldzieher’s my maiden name and I’ve lumbered all three of them with it. Pelham is for dear old P.G. Wodehouse.

So there you go. Officially announced and registered and everything.