LastMinuteLucie and the search for time

Posts tagged ‘owl’

A wandering I did go

I am rested and renewed after a splendid two-centre holiday in this second half of the Easter holidays.The first half was spent in the company of two of my oldest friends and their families in Lancashire, where we whiled away the time reminiscing, eating, laughing, eating, singing along to Grease, eating and doing a little life coaching for each other – you’ll be pleased to know I fitted in a little creativity with a veritable pop up nail salon going on one morning. I painted six sets of nails with different designs.

'zebra' aka siberian tiger...

‘zebra’ aka siberian tiger…

tiger stripe

tiger stripe

owl's head and feather nails

owl’s head and feather nails

music inspired

music inspired

spring daisies

spring daisies

pretty pearls on scarlet

pretty pearls on scarlet

There was also a Bake Off but you’ll have to see my daughters cake blog for that!

We stayed in Hornby and took a day trip to Morecombe. We posed alongside Eric and danced down the steps singing ‘Bring me Sunshine’ in true tourist fashion. The statue to him is really lovely and so much more appropriate than many memorials. In front there is an ever decreasing circle of quotes from the shows – my favourite: ‘Tea, Ern?’ – and lists of show guests. Too cool.

I took some photos and my favourite is this view of the bay – I love the series of S shapes in it, created by this insert in the boardwalk.

the sweep of the bay

the sweep of the bay

inspired by nature

inspired by nature

Another day we walked the Ingleton Waterfall trail – absolutely stunning. You travel through the sound of water and woods to the whipping of the wind over the tops and then back through the trees. It batters the senses and challenges your knees with it’s steep ups and downs but it’s worth it. Amongst the trees are trunks embedded with coins. Pennies, twopences, fivepences banged in on their sides, creating an extra bark so subtle that you double take as you get close enough to recognise it. The first one seems like a deliberate art piece but there are several more spontaneous looking additions scattered throughout the walk. I love to come across art like that. To be taken by surprise. Art is everywhere and everything; subtle intervention is a joy.

I was too busy walking to photograph this myself but this image is from Gorgeous.

We also went to Norfolk. It’s so open there. The sky goes on forever and it still feels wild. I spent my time looking at the art that it inspires and trying to relate that to my own home town and my own work. It would be interesting to create some work based on where I live. Perhaps that will be a challenge for the next long holiday period…

Easter ‘make a day’ – Day Two: Oz Owl

I had within easy reach a pair of needles, an oddment of wool and a pattern – how could I resist a quick knit?

Cast on twelve stitches, garter stitch approximately 25 rows, cast off, fold in half, sew, stuff, sew and add a face.

Please Welcome, Oz Owl.

little knit


any excuse!

Any Excuse!

My oldest daughter had a couple of friends to stay last night – a birthday party of sorts – usually referred to, without any sense of irony, as a sleepover.

Lack of sleep aside, it gave me many more opportunities for small bouts of creativity.

before disaster struck

I watched my daughter use an icing bag recently, with royal icing in it (she has her own blog and I thought ‘I’ll give that a go, looks easy enough.’

Well I was right – if you can use a pen you can pretty much use an icing bag. Unfortunately for me my royal icing mix was a little soft, so when I tried to lift my handsome blue owls off the greaseproof and place them on my little squares of iced cake for the party bag, they broke spectacularly! Being of a waste not want not nature, I used them as sprinkles. They made a change from hundreds and thousands…

we ❤ bath bombs

I like to let my girls spend time doing nothing.

What I mean by that is I like to allow them time to find something to do by themselves, something unscheduled or not adult led. It’s worked a treat – except that when they come up with ideas for activities when their friends come, I can hardly say no.

With her party in mind and not wanting her guests to be bored, my daughter took due note of the Blue Peter instructions (see link below) for making bath bombs with bicarb, cream of tartar, food flavouring and colouring and water.  It was like making bicarb sandcastles.  As with sandcastles though, the water content is crucial.

When we freed these from the silicone mould we had a bit of crumblage, so I wrapped them artistically in foil to maintain the heart shape for the party bag and instructed the girls to ensure they opened them over the bath!

I’m sure they will fizz beautifully at the appropriate moment…

When I was a girl and ‘Why Don’t You’ was still on TV, shrinking crisp packets in the oven was practically a national pastime.

I can’t actually remember what we did with them after they were shrunk, but I was happy to see this particular fashion come full circle, apparently featuring on ‘Totally Rubbish’ recently. (that link doesn’t seem to be available, sorry.) Basically, heat your oven to around 120* C and line baking sheets with greaseproof paper before putting your (plastic) crisp packets on. Some shrink quicker than others. They will curl, but you can flatten them when you take them out, under another sheet of greaseproof but remember they are H.O.T !!

My only recommendation is: really make sure you preheat the oven and then watch them like the proverbial hawk. 30 seconds can mean the difference between a perfectly shrunk recognisable crisp packet and an unrecognisable blob of strange stretchy springy plastic.

I love googly eyes. They just make anything they are attached to funny. We made these fellas into brooches with a little safety pin duct- taped to the back.

what just happened?I think we just got zapped!

what just happened?
I think we just got zapped!

Finally, I have an odd penchant for patterned fingernails. I think they just appeal to the paintbrush holder in me – an opportunity to do something in miniature (remember, I bought the magnifier light).

Plus it seems to make me the best mum ever. Which is a bonus.


last minute lucie strikes again

Unusually I have had a creative moment at the beginning of the week.

Not so much a case of making time, but a case of having to – my daughter’s birthday is tomorrow. I have shoehorned in a decorated cake as well as the owl motif t-shirt I’ve been meaning to make for ooh, let’s see, a fortnight…

Anyway, here is the cake.

owl on a branch - in case you were wondering...

owl on a branch – in case you were wondering…

You can see I went for sweets as the easy option, but I love the way he’s come out. I find him most amusing.

The thing that took the longest however was the t-shirt. Here are the ingredients:


a lovely french blue t-shirt from Primark, various pieces of old clothes fabric from my ever expanding stash and some bondaweb.

I took inspiration from the wrapping paper I’ve used on my daughter’s gifts so far ( her first phone, house keys…you can see we are growing up here) and drew some freehand shapes on the fabric. This first attempt I wasn’t very happy with – the pink stripe is way too strong.

a bit Batman and Robin this one

After that I got into the zone and the fabric started to make sense, inasmuch as the patterns began to show their affiliations, and I put together the pieces using bondaweb. Finally the built up owls took their place on the fabric branch and made this lovely design.

Unfortunately I won’t fit into this t-shirt, but as I’m pretty sure my daughter will like it we should be ok….. I am still contemplating hand stitching the edges of the motif, but for now I am happy with it and my daughter – who knows me well – will understand if I take it back at a later stage to add a little more.

11 already. Sheesh, where does time go?

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