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Craft, Cats and Football-Isn’t the season over yet !

Before I start writing about other things, I wanted to share with you my special encounter, it made me smile all day.

I set out for my walk yesterday morning and there just sitting at the edge of the yard was a small hare. I stood very still and so did it, nose in the air sniffing about. I just watched and wished I had my phone to capture the moment. It gradually came closer and closer stopping each time, raising its ears and nose checking for danger it was magical and only few feet away, so beautiful I was mesmerised.

Compass Rose Studio Black and white Celtic knotwork hare

On to the topic of the day  Craft, Cats and Football , although the later seems to be the dominate one of the moment.

As the football season draws to a close you would think the opportunity for drama would be gone but no there is still plenty of ways it can ruin my day

the last things we wanted was them to win today, they will go into the final full of confidence, our season is over , we are rubbish what was the coach thinking of tinkering with the team etc etc…

I did get flowers the following day as a sorry for the silent grumpiness so not too bad an outcome I suppose and by the following weekend, optimism has returned it’s bonkers , a rollercoaster of emotion.

What is more amazing to me is how I find myself confined to the kitchen/studio on a regular basis, checking my phone for updates because the kick of a ball defines the mood of the house.

But tonight is a doozy , the game doesn’t matter but you would think it was the most important one of the season !! So I sit here in the kitchen with DAISY who looks equally bemused and write my blog !


If any of you are reading this and thinking what the hell is she on about, I would recommend, if you were inclined to a greater understanding of the mindset of an avid football fan, you watch Fever Pitch apart from providing a great insight, it has the advantage of staring Colin Firth and Mark Strong. This was my birthday treat many years ago after a nice Greek meal then off to see this at the cinema !! Says it all .

And what of my creative activities while keeping out of the way, I have been quite productive so from that point of view the football season has its benefits. 

I am really enjoying looking at new ways to be creative, tweed still plays an important role in my work and there are always elements of it in the things I make, but I am finding the challenge of using new types of media really interesting. I had hoped at this point to be able to share the news about a woven design I am working on, but that is still pending while I work on other ideas. 

During my delightful furlough last year, I revisited the design work from my degree days. What I rediscovered was my love of pattern making with pen and ink, inspired by the shapes of Celtic knotwork. I have often wondered if that is why I was drawn to swirly machine embroidery because of the circles you see in Celtic design. I am a however a little worried I am getting carried away with my Celtic knotwork, I love it, it makes me happy so why not…these thoughts are usually followed by a bit of self-doubt . ,,,do you have that too …what makes us feel like that do you think ?

So, what have I been doing with my Celtic knotwork obsession, two new silk screens one with seahorses, inspired by a beautiful batik we have hanging in our bathroom plus some stylised flowers and trees which I think have a kind of Celtic /Scandi vibe. My seahorses and plants have also been downsized onto some tin mugs which is something I have been working on for a while. They should arrive this week , more excitement.

The screens arrived today along with some lovely, coloured inks which I am so excited to use. DAISY is always very nosey when parcels arrive and loves nothing better than to sit on them and once the box is opened have a good look inside.

DAISY has been a bit quiet today, spending most of her day outside rather than asleep on the bed or annoying me by sitting in front of my keyboard. I think it’s because the Swifts are back, they have just returned for the summer and she is fascinated by them. They do like to chatter and get themselves noticed; a favourite game is to divebomb her while she is sitting outside. She did catch one last year, fortunately I was on hand and I managed to rescue it, but that does not deter them…they are so cheeky and full of character.

The arrival of the Swifts got me thinking is a Celtic knotwork Swift just a step too far, I thought it was so I celebrated their arrival by ordering some beautiful ceramic ones from the very talented Lorna Gilbert

They have arrive and are as beautiful as I thought they would be !

What a day Hares, Swifts and Silkscreens what next ?

As a PS – Just a reminder I am running a giveaway on social media so don’t miss out !

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Craft, Cats and Football-Tales from the Studio

So, I have never written a blog before so this is new journey that I hope you are going to join me on.

I start this on a sunny April evening, camped out in the kitchen with the door closed and the music on while elsewhere in the house a football fanatic watches in hope that his beloved team wins. Who, what, where is not what this story is about but it does play a part so we will come back to that later.

I went out this morning and enjoyed a lovely walk before starting work, am I the only one who uses walking as a kind of therapy ? I talk away to myself about various things and often forget to just be mindful and in the moment. Today’s topic of conversation was the challenges of social media, how some days you get lots of likes and feel elated and the next day nothing and feel deflated. Crazy how much power the numbers have and what impact they can have on your confidence or mood. The power of the LIKE !

I understand from my football loving other half that this weekend the footballers are taking a stand against the power of SM and boycotting all the platforms,  an interesting initiative to try and stop the trolling etc.

But enough about that, the blog is supposed to be about my creative life but real life often gets in the way don’t you think. I have a cat for instance DAISY some of you may have met her on the website or in person at the studio. She like many cats always looks to be as helpful as possible by sitting on whatever you are working on, or attacking every bit of string or ribbon that comes within her sights. 

At the weekend she had sneaked into the studio and curled up on the sofa bed amongst the cushions, no respect for the product at all and dozed off. I was happily plating some leather I was using for a button loop without giving her a second thought, I glanced up and her eagle eyes were upon me and the fast-moving leather! Fortunately, it was a sunny day, so I took the task outside and she was too lazy to follow.


Daisy the Compass Rose Cat
Compass Rose Studio with blue clouds

I spent the rest of the sunny Sunday afternoon pottering in the studio doors open music on, again escaping from the football and the tension in the house.

I had a plan to finish off a lovely cushion I ‘d been working on a few weeks earlier. I have a what I like to call a stash of fabric and wanted to find a nice bit of tweed to go with the navy cord I had chosen to back the linen. The cushion was a larger version of one I had made earlier a beautiful piece of denim, from the now sadly defunct Scottish Linen mill in Kirkcaldy, printed with a Celtic knotwork inspired fish design and embellished with some machine embroidery

Compass Rose Studio-denin blue linen cushion with 3 printed white fish an decorative embroidery

I made my choices fabric choices then thought, while I am here, I will just print some red fish as you do, these are for my fish lavender bags and take some photographs of a few products with some coloured pens and buttons… I am like that some days not always focused.

You will be happy to know I returned to the task in hand, finished the cushion added my leather loop and a beautiful ceramic button kindly made for me by the lovely Kerry at Ceramiker and then bowing to the pressure of Instagram algorithms made my first reel to showcase my completed cushion. Job done !

The football was still on so I cut out my fish , selected some tweed for the backs had a little tidy up then returned to the house safe in the knowledge that all was well and the score was the right one…not so sure about tonight but time will tell.

Hope you enjoyed this little insight.

Join me again for further tales from the Studio !


Compass Rose Studio two red lavender filled fish with Celtic Knotwork print , rope , shells and beach finds