Saturday, 19 April 2014

A Quick Trip to The Isle of Skye!

Our school holidays were quite early this year, first two weeks in April and since I spent the first week working really hard to get stock made for the Makers Market on the 5th, we decided to take the children up to Skye for most of the second week.


 It takes us about 5 hours to drive straight there but we stopped a few times on the way as the scenery between Fife and Skye is just stunning.
Eilean Donan Castle above is always a welcome sight. You know you are close to Skye when you see this iconic sight.



It's been three years since we were on Skye and it was really great to see all the sights again. Here is the Old Man of Stor taken on my phone as we drove up the Trotternish peninsula. Not a great photo but it's not easy to stop at the side of the road here.

We were making our way up to The Quiraing, a fantastic geological feature in the north part of the island, and we just had to make a stop at Mealt Waterfall and Kilt Rock.


The Quiraing was looking resplendent in the Spring sunshine.


David took the photo above on our 'big' camera and I took the one below on my phone. Life looks a lot greener in my world! hahaha
That's my son being a 'Quirangatang'. 


I always think that photos taken looking back along the ridge look really impressive like ou have hiked all the way up here but really it's a very easy walk. You can drive up to the top of the pass and park then walk along the foot of the cliffs on a relatively easy path!


The last time we walked The Quiraing we went from the top all the way to the bottom then got a lift back up for the car. This time we just walked to the middle and explored the main features. Below is known as 'The Prison'.


Another walk that we did was up to the Fairy Pools in Glenbrittle. We had been here before as well and just loved it. The water flowing from the Cuillin hills is such an unusual shade of turquoise and all the little water falls are so enchanting.





We must go back in the summer time and go for a dip! My daughter stuck her toe in and assures me that it was absolutely freezing. Well it would be as there was still snow on the hills!


We stayed at the Skyewalker Hostel at Portnalong again. I blogged about this great hostel 3 years ago and it is still just as good if not better! You can read that post here 





There are a few oddities around the place to keep you amused.



We got mixed weather on this trip, mostly good. The thing about Skye though is that the weather can make the scenery look even more dramatic.
Below are the Cuillin brooding beneath a dark cloud. I'll be using this as inspiration for a picture for next years calendar, without me in it of course.



I love this little crofters house below.


We did get one rainy day and spent it going round galleries and cafes etc.
I was delighted to bump into my friend Emma at Skyeworks Gallery above The Isle of Skye Bakery in Portree. I had no idea she'd be there and found her running a workshop on how to make a textile wall hanging. 
Here is Emma with some of the pieces produced during the workshop.


Emma and her husband have a beautiful studio in the south part of Skye. You can read a full post about it here


As the rain was just not letting up this day, we decided to put on our boots and coats and walk to Talisker Bay and just get really wet.
It was worth it. The bay looked very dramatic with it's black sand, big black boulders and rugged stack standing our against the grey sky.
You'd think I'd taken this photo in black and white!


The next day was lovely and sunny again and we took a little trip over to Raasay but I'll write that up in the next post.

Really busy getting ready for Open Studios which is in TWO WEEKS! Read all about it over on our website here























Wednesday, 2 April 2014

Morningside Makers Market Saturday 5th April


Come along and see me at The Morningside Makers Market this Saturday in Edinburgh! 
As well as my full range of textile art and craft I will also have plenty of Open Studios brochures with me.




Monday, 24 March 2014

New Mugs Now Available

I promised photos of my latest mug design and here it is!


It has a cottage with sheep on one side and a highland coo peeking over a wall on the other. Just what you need to keep you company while you enjoy your favourite hot beverage. 



 You can see the full design on the box.

Also available as a card.


So now there's a Set of Four! They can be purchased individually, as pairs or as the full set, mixed or matched.
£8.50 each or £32 for the set.


I also had the design for the Sheep Mug made into a card.




Long Card £3.50




I will have all these with me at 



Saturday 5th April

11-4pm

and at Open Studios 3rd - 5th May. Hope to see some of you there!


Saturday, 22 March 2014

It's Full Steam Ahead for Open Studios 2014!


We are very excited to finally have this year's Open Studios brochures ready for distribution! 
As of next week they will be available to pick up free of charge from galleries, museums, libraries, shops and cafes and many other venues as well.
Places that have agreed to keep a supply in stock are;
WATERSTONES
Dunfermline, Kingsgate Centre 
Dundee, 35 Commercial Street,
Perth, St John's Centre 
St Andrews 101-103 Market Street
Kirkcaldy, 175 High Street
Edinburgh, 83 George St and 128 Princes Street
Glasgow, 153-157 Sauchiehall St and 174-176 Argyle St.

GLENROTHES- Cafe Alfresco, 58 Unicorn Way, Kingdom Centre and you can also pick them up at
Loch Leven's Larder, Milnathort.

All the information in the brochure is also available on our website here www.openstudiosfife.co.uk



I will be at my usual venue in the village of Ladybank.

I have been making lots of new pictures, jewellery pieces and trinket boxes for this year's event and I also have a Makers Market on Saturday 5th April to make for as well so I have been extremely busy.

You can find me at 



Saturday 5th April

11-4pm

I will have a stack of Open Studio Brochures with me so you can collect your free copy there.





Some new makes include this picture in lovely soft subtle shades.

These brooches are made using Donegal Tweed which a absolutely love.



I have used buttons to accent them rather than my usual iridescent beads as I think the buttons suit the soft colors better.

 Donegal Tweed Brooches £12
Also available in my Etsy shop


Also new are there large Textile Heart Pendants.
I have printed the design onto cotton or felt fabrics and used large metal hearts with coordinating hand coloured centres to make a focal point.



I also have yet another mug design arriving on Monday along with some more cards and notebooks.
So you should find me well stocked if you make it along to the Makers Market on the 5th and I hope to have even more to delight you if you visit me during Open Studios.

I'll show you the new mugs on Monday :)

Monday, 3 March 2014

Sheep Mugs and The Aurora Borealis!

What an exciting end to last week we had. On Thursday evening I was faffing about finishing off a few things when I spotted an update on Facebook from a friend in Orkney saying that the aurora was amazing right there and then. Knowing it was a clear night down here I went out on the off chance that we might see a glimmer.
At first we saw nothing but started to notice a green glow on the horizon. We all got our boots on and went and stood in the field and suddenly an arc of green appeared with lights shooting up out of it and a red haze all around. It was absolutely breath taking.

It was the kind of moment when you think you should try and take a photo but on the other hand you might miss everything by running inside for the camera. I also know that getting good photos of the aurora involves tripods and special settings on the camera so instead of fiddling about and missing anything we just stood awe struck and watched as the lights moved and changed.


I got permission to share this photo from Keith Proven Artist and Photographer who is based in Cupar, north Fife. This is pretty much what we saw although we were a little further away. I have seen the aurora borealis once before but had never seen any colours. I have always wanted to see it again but never imagined that we'd see it from our own front door! You can see more photos on Keith's Facebook page here

So as if seeing the northern lights wasn't enough excitement for one day, my new mugs then arrived from the printers on Friday! 



The original felt picture that the mug is printed from features this fluffy mamma sheep and her three Spring lambs skipping through the meadow.




I have also restocked with the Cottage and Coo deisgns.



The mugs come with their own matching Gift Boxes as well.



£8.50 including the box available here
The Sheep Mugs have been flying out the door over the weekend and there are only 8 left. I have ordered more but I'm not sure when they will be in so if you would like one soon, please don't hesitate to order.

I have also have four new Notebook designs printed.


Pretty Bird


Dolphin


Creagan Cottage


and Hannah's House

Notebooks are £5.95 each available here


Pretty Bird is also available as a card
£2.50

I've been busy with my jewellery making as well and came up with these Pony Pendants last week.



And these Treble Clef Pendants and Brooches



The Treble Clef pendants sold out within two days after I shared them on my Facebook page and these two are all I have had time to make since so it's back to the sewing machine this week to re stock.

That's all for now. I've been trying to update my blog since last Thursday but have just been so busy! It's going to be another busy week here as well with lots of juggling of time.
Remember if you have any enquiries about anything you see here, just email me at aileenclarkecrafts@yahoo.co,

All contributed content © Aileen Clarke