Monday, 10 March 2008

Beneath the papers

Some of you asked what was inside the birthday parcels...well, here are some of the lovelies that lay beneath the lovely scrunchy tissue paper. Above are some of the felts that Ian bought for me - they are so very different from any other felt that I've owned before - beautiful subtle colours, a thick fleeciness, they could become an addiction.

And here is a stack of fabrics that Ian also bought for me, after Mette of Erleperle wonderfulness had pointed us in the direction of Tilda fabrics. Each piece is a little smaller than a fat quarter, and will be so useful for applique pieces. He also bought me a Damian Rice CD, which I love...but I think it was sort of a present for himself too, as he was just so desperate for me to stop listening on repeat to the same two Damian Rice songs that I'd downloaded from itunes. I am now listening to my new CD and interspersing each track with a quick replay of my old favourites...this pleases him...a bit.

Our little Zebra was beside herself when she realised that it was soon to be my birthday and that Ian would be home too late each night to take her shopping. I suggested that she could make me something instead, but she said that wasn't a 'proper' present...I asked her whether she thought that all the presents I'd made for people for Christmas weren't proper presents either...I could almost see the cogs whirring in her lovely sweet head and by the time Ian came home she'd thought of what she wanted to make me: a Mummy's Catalogue, for which she carefully took her own pictures of, and wrote about, some of the things that I had made around the house (Dinosaur helped too apparently, in grumpy sort of way). It is adorable. Though the conversation that Zebra and I had reminded me of a conversation that I'd had with my grandmother when I was small. For Christmas one year I'd picked two tiny, tiny pottery creatures to give to her and had been quite delighted with them. But on the day, my sister handed over her gift and all that I could see was how much bigger it was than my own paltry looking parcel. I sat there with tears running down my face. It was only when my lovely little grandma (who is about 4'11) said to me: 'But I'm small...does that mean that I'm not as good as all the other grandmas?' that I was finally able to stop weeping. I think of this conversation often since I was reminded of it by her recently. As she had retold the story to me she went over to her corner shelves and got down the little figures that I'd given to her nearly 25 years ago...

These matryoshka were on my mother and father's birthday card for me - aren't they lovely!

And here are some of the Amy Butler fabrics that she bought for me - the pink and cream I have ear-marked for a kimono.

And some books from my mother & sister: The Soft Furnishing Workbook and Where Women Create: Inspiring Workspaces of Extraordinary Women - the latter was responsible for some changes to my own workspace (read: bedroom)...it involved saws, nails and lots of other trappings of faire du bricolage (sorry, DIY is too hideous a term to use, yes my chosen term may be a little pretentious for an English speaker, but at least it doesn't conjure images of lurid orange aprons in a B&Q warehouse...no?). More on that later though, when the transition has been completed.

Some Persephones from both my sister and sister-in-law....the end-covers are beautiful and I can't wait to start reading. And then these beautiful coasters from my dear friend, Debs, along with a beautiful necklace and a lovely egg from other friends (not photographed, but very much loved).

And finally this beautiful pot that I have quite fallen in love with - it is a gift from my mother-in-law. It always amazes me that the angle of a head can be so very expressive.

Thank you so much for all your lovely birthday wishes...in case you were wondering my equilibrium has now been fully restored, the make-up has been properly cleansed away and my bed is no longer masquerading as a boat at sea. Horay! Being 31 is quite fabulous!

29 comments:

  1. Oooh you lucky girl, such gorgeous presents :) I loved the plaque with the mother and daughter on. I collect that sort of pottery(?) myself but that's not one I had seen before.

    Gemma x
    www.craftsbygemma.typepad.co.uk

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  2. Ms. Teacakes...you got royally spoiled for your birthday. I love everything. The present from Zebra-girl is especially precious. I cherish similar gifts from my daughter. I have two pieces by the same artist that made your pot. I will have to photograph them. Those Persephones are gorgeous. I've looked at them online and drooled. Lucky you!

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  3. What beautiful gifts! Gorgeous fabrics and such a sweet effort from your little girl. I notice too that you've added It's hard to be hip over thirty to your collection - hope you enjoy it as much as I do!

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  4. Wow, you made out like a bandit! All deserved, of course. :)

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  5. Gorgeous goegeous fabrics. there's really nothing quite like getting a few more for the stash is there? Glad you had such a great day Florence xx

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  6. How lovely to get new fabric for one's birthday. And they seem to know you quite well since they are all what I would call 'Florencey fabrics' :)

    I keep checking to see if you have updated your sidebar with your real age but so far you seem content to masquerade as someone who only recently left their twenties...

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  7. You made out like a bandit! These are all such wonderful birthday gifts. I'm glad you had such a wonderful day.
    PS. I just love the sewing machine cake Ian made you!

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  8. happy (belated!) birthday, some lovely gifts there, gorgeous fabrics, and i have to ask, where oh where did he get that lovely felt from???

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  9. can I start the official Zebra Girl fan club? can I, can I?

    (lovely things, all)

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  10. What wonderful presents, chosen with care by people who obviously know you very well.
    Love the catalogue!

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  11. Oh how lovely, you received such lovely gifts.
    What a lovely tale about your Grandmother too, so sweet!
    love Alison x

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  12. That felt is superb and oh the catalogue. Fabulous presents.
    Much love
    Hazel
    xx

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  13. Happy birthday! I'm glad you got some Thilda fabric. I'm looking forward to see, what you will make of it. Have a great day! :) Mette

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  14. what completely gorgeous presents glad you are feeling better now!
    love the story about your grandma too, those kind of memories are priceless.

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  15. Such a treasure trove of goodies. It looks to me as though there will be many felty adventures ahead!

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  16. Your grandmother story made me cry.
    I love all the presents Florence, the fabric is beautiful, and the catalogue is so sweet.
    My 5 yr old boy was hilarious this evening. We were playing Guess Who, you know where you guess which character your opponent has by asking strategic questions. He said 'Does your person have ears?' You ned to understand Guess Who to find that funny but we rolled about. Much giddiness followed. Take care! Gayle

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  17. What treasures! I have serious stash envy looking at all that fabric. What a fabulous gift from Zebra girl - so thoughtful.

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  18. WOW,you lucky,lucky girl!Gorgeous treasures you've received,love the fabric and the books.Loved the comment from your gran,my mum is only 4'11 too!

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  19. I love that story of you and your Grandma (and the one of you and your daughter too). Both very inspiring and uplifting. I also come from a family of short women (I am one of the taller ones at 5'1") so the phrase "good things come in small packages" has been bandied around our family for as long as I can remember.

    Your gifts are wonderful - how lucky you are :)

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  20. Oh my golly your blog is gorgeous!!! I don't think I have been over before. Everything is so beautiful - I'll definitely be back! Lucy x

    P.S. Happy Birthday!

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  21. What fab presents - and a happy birthday (a bit late!) to you! (Mine was on sunday)

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  22. What beautiful presents - and thank you so much for the link to the Tilda fabrics, I have all 3 of the tilda books and was wondering where all the pretty fabrics they use come from - now I know! Like other people here, I really look forward to seeing what you create with them - Natalie x

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  23. What lovely packages of delightful treasures you received! I love the story about your grandmother, so touching. Birthdays are special and I'm so glad yours was celebrated so gloriously.

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  24. OOh lovely presents, now what to make with them all! I would now be spending a lot of time sort of stroking them!

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  25. Lucky girl - such a yummy array of goodies from people who know you so well! Grandmothers are so wise aren't they. I think that Mummy catalogue is just beautiful and so very special!

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  26. It looks like you had a wonderful birthday, with lots of love surrounding you!
    enjoy all the gifts.
    and aren't grandma's great for reminding you of the important stuff in life? although the story mine tells most often is when she knit me some socks and I refused to walk in them because they made my bloody feet itch!

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  27. Hurray for March birthdays!! Happy birthday to you. What a lovely lot of goodies you got, lucky girl.

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  28. Happy belated birthday! What a lucky lady! Gobs of gorgeous gifts and so much of it fabrics! Wow! Neat that you like Tilda too! You can imagine that she is popular here in her home country Norway. The fabrics are so pretty!

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  29. You garnered quite the load for a b-day girl. Nice that everyone knows what you like and does a great job picking out for you! I love the felt. When I read your posts, I am reminded of Nigella Lawson. I think whatever you are describing is just as luscious as her descriptions of food while licking her fingers enjoying her chocolate! Though I enjoy all of your posts when I come by, my favorite was your anniversary story and picture of your husband by the window. The grass outside was gorgeous - and the guy in the window wasn't too bad, either!
    -- Michele
    http://calicodaisy.blogspot.com/

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Thank you so much for taking the time to leave a message - it's always really lovely to hear from people.

I now tend to reply within the comments section, so please do check back if you've asked a question or wish to chat.

Florence x