Secret squirrel? That's me. I'm a secret squirrel. I squirrel little finds away till it's time to unearth them. I found this blouse whilst I was foraging for a plain tee in Primark for my boy and I was quite drawn to it. Shades of the 70's with the pussy bow, slightly Other Stories in it's print (similar to this) and quite flattering on with those whooshy sleeves. Bingo wings? What bingo wings? Oh those bingo wings under the whooshy sleeves. Can't see them (result).




£5 for a little sale top which I think I can work for the summer. I can see this teamed with a little pair of mini kick flare jeans for summer and a nice little saddle bag. Yes ... I think I'm going to go there with the old flares. 

Be afraid. Be very afraid.

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Last Note :

  • Fess up your secret squirrel stash if you dare. I'll start you off ... I confess to also stashing away a pair of tan wedge mules :)





Okay so I waved the Lulu & Co jumper off with the DHL man mid week. I loved it but there was no way I could live with that annoying bump on the front and believe me I tried really hard to get rid of it. So what's a girl to do who wants to wear a rainbow on her chest? Use her noggin and see what she can come up with. And this is what the noggin came up with.



Okay - not as sweet as the jumper but infinitely cheaper. 

For those who follow me on Instagram, they know I will have had a go with some transfer paper to do a Plants vs Zombies tee for my older boy. It turned out okayish but the transfer itself was not that sharp and it also cracked after a wash. Like it had seen better days. But ... the transfer paper did cost me £1 for 2 sheets at the pound shop. 

Not so good eh?


But I thought this could work in my favour actually. So I found a picture of a rainbow, printed it out on to some transfer paper and then ironed it on an old tee. And it turned out quite well don't you think? Looks like an authentic 70's tee complete with retro washed out transfer. People pay good money for stuff like this you know? I pay good money for stuff like this you know!


The effect after one wash.


So this is what I basically did .....

  • Created a few designs on the laptop.



  • And printed it out on the transfer paper.

  • Note that if you are doing a text print - you need to reverse the image or you will have backwards reading text. I forgot to do this when I printed "George Dude" out but luckily I remembered before I ruined a tee.
  • You need to cut out the image leaving a 1mm or so gap around the edge - if you are doing this on a white tee shirt, this won't show up but on a coloured tee, you will see this outer edge so you need to keep this as small as possible.


Another rainbow with a bump in it! Gah!

  • Get your tee shirt ready. I wanted to see what this would like on a grey background as I might do this on a grey sweatshirt at a later date so I found an old grey tee of George's to practice on. Make sure it is laid perfectly flat (give it an iron first).

  • Lay your cut out image on the tee.

  • Give it a press with the iron for a couple of minutes (follow the instructions on the packet) making sure you do circular motions to cover all the area adequately.

  • Let it cool down and carefully remove the backing paper.


Mine and his (George's).


So that was a bit of fun but it opens up a lot of potential. The transfer paper I used is definitely on the dodgy side but there are lots of different ones on Amazon to try which should give you a much better finish (sharper, brighter, clearer) - just read the reviews carefully and take your pick - I am not being held responsible for your knacked up tees! I actually prefer the muted effect on our tees - like I said, I saw how this could work in my favour to get the look I wanted.

Peace!


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Last note :

  • Clothing which you want to do this on should ideally be a 100% cotton or at least a high cotton percentage as you will be ironing the transfer directly on to the fabric (no protective cloth) - singed fabrics don't smell good.
  • Pick something which is a tight knit fabric so jersey tees are ideal. Jumpers are too loose a weave and there will be gaps in the print. Basically if you stretch the garment - the transfer stretches. Or it does using the dodgy transfer paper I used.
  • If you are wanting to print on a dark coloured garment, you need to buy transfer paper for dark garments for the best result. As you will notice, the same coloured rainbow came out better on George's lighter grey tee than mine AND I was chancing it using transfer paper for light fabrics rather than dark.
  • Keep your shapes simple to cut round - the first one I did of the cactus is not for the faint hearted.
  • Idea! For mums who have mucky pups like me - maybe print out a few designs on a sheet (like the stars I've done on the transfer sheet above) and save them and cut them out to use over stubborn stains! 







I caved :o/

There was only one left in my size on NAP. I've been watching this since the NAP sale started. It was the only thing I was really holding out for. I ordered it and kind of hoped it wouldn't fit and was horrid.

And of course I loved it on sight. For goodness sake, it's a grey jumper at the end of the day but it just happens to have an embroidered multi coloured lurex rainbow on it. Love!

So I banked on it being a horrid fit. Nop - it fitted exactly as I would have liked - just on the right side of fitted loose. As Goldilocks would say about all Baby Bear's things .... "it was just riiiiigggghhhht".




Or was it? Those 2 pics above are after I gave the rainbow a press with a cloth and iron. Can you spot a slight bump in the rainbow? Before that, it looked like this which I just put down to the way it had been packed.



Arghgh! So giving it a press helped but didn't get rid of it entirely and if you look carefully at the top picture of the model - I swear there's a bump in the rainbow on her jumper - I have spent more time scrutinising her chest than I care to admit.

So that's kind of killed the jumper for me. I did really want to keep it, it was fun and even the Grumps said he'd go out with me in it but I can't - that slight bump is nothing short of annoying and as it wasn't that cheap - I did want it to be "just riiiiigggghhhht".

So all is not lost ... there is hope at the end of another rainbow. I might try this one next!














Happy new year everyone.

Look at that above. New cup, new diary and a bit of fruit.

Well the cup is mine but the diary is the big boy's and the fruit has now been devoured. Yes, new year, new good intentions.

Basically on New Years Eve, I reached saturation point. I was a poisoned pup. Not a morsel more could pass my lips. I couldn't even manage the New Year celebratory Champagne - not even a tiny sip. If I had, I might have exploded. It was that bad.

So I have calmed down. And since January 1st, I've only had 2 chocolates. And a lot more fruit and I've been salivating over people's Instagram food feeds. The Grumps laughed at me the other night as I sat in bed grumbling about how hungry I was whilst flitting through photos of nice food complaining about how I was starving which was interrupted every now and then with "that looks amazing". It must have been bad because he even asked me the next morning if I'd got up in the night to satisfy my food cravings. No. I didn't. I was fast asleep dreaming of Byron Burgers.

But nearly 10 days in to the new year, I am feeling a little better. The belly bloat has subsided thought the girth is still there and I have taken to standing on the scales again. I haven't actually been on a pair of scales for more than a year and I was masochistic enough to go and stand on them just to see how much I'd put on. I prayed for good news and didn't get it. 

So I am eating better and cutting out naughty snacks. And double breakfasts. I used to have breakfast at 7am with the boys and then at 9.30 after the school run. Every little bit of abstinence helps. And I'm getting to grips with advocados mashed on toast with poached eggs and the such like (I blame Instagram) and hoping this works for me ... for at least the month of January till I get bored. I'm afraid I'm not getting on the Nutribullet bandwagon like so many - I need to chew. 

So what are you peeps up to? New beginnings for you too?

-----------------------------

Last Note :










Well I know you're all busy - it is Christmas Eve after all so I won't keep you long. I know you are probably tying up loose ends getting ready for the big day tomorrow but I wanted to take a moment out from the hustle and bustle to say ....


Thank you for visiting my little space this year and for all your lovely comments. I wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a fabulous 2015. I hope you have a lovely time celebrating with your family and friends. Also, just take a moment out to think of those less fortunate and to take stock of all that you actually do have. We have a lot. A whole lot more than we actually know.

love


Sue   x





Do you want to know something? I wasn't really that bothered about getting a Christmas jumper until I saw the picture of Talisker (here) getting measured up for his Christmas jumper. I've pretty much managed without one all these years and then that one picture of a dog in a half knitted ensemble, started me off looking at Christmas jumpers which I never knew I wanted or needed. Suckerrrrr!

And I did say previously that I wasn't going to go for Christmas pudding or robin on the chest but I did say I might give the old Fair Isle a chance. So I did. I picked out this one!

H&M jumper, New Look Jeans, Vintage Snakeskin Clutch (Ebay), Dune Shoes


So not a true Fair Isle jumper but a more contemporary take in a retro kind of way -  I'm loving that 70's mustard yellow and brown detailing! I did try on a gazillion of these jumpers before I found my perfect one and it was all because the first one I tried on in store in a size XS was rather roomy on me yet the S was teeny weeny. So I then went and grabbed armfuls of the same style jumper in various sizes and had a manic trying on session before I ended up with my "perfect" one. 

And yes, I've styled it up a little with some heels and a snakeskin clutch but it's one of those outfits which if you strip away those two items and replace with a pair of regular flats or boots and stick on a heattech underneath, a parka on top, you're good to go to the park (I have such a glam life). 

Anyway recreating a similar look is very simple and aren't those shoes below wicked? :



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Last Note :

  • You know, it's something when a dog can sell you a jumper isn't it? But you have to admit that Tal does look rather dapper in his finished jumper. Didn't Debs (Tal's owner) do a good job?


Pictures by Neejel (Tal's other owner)










What I Made The Other Week


I made that! #proud


I'm taking the mick now aren't I? But these acronyms are such fun. But no seriously, that is what I made the other week except I've only just got round to posting it now.

My friend L1 and I set a date in the diary to make our Christmas wreaths. For the last few years she has been kind enough to make mine for me but she asked if I'd like to have a go this year - why yes indeedy!

In a nutshell this is what we did.

  • Cut and condition foliage to be used on the wreath a few days in advance. This ensures the foliage is in the best condition before it is used. (More info here). You need a LOT of foliage - go outside and get raiding the country lanes.
Sorry - this pic was taken on the camera phone so is a bit fuzzy

  • Buy, gather or make the decorative bits you want to put on the wreath (I bought some fake red and green berries which I liked).
I didn't end up using the red berries.

  • Soak an oasis foam ring in water till saturated. Wrap the oasis ring in cling film to hold the oasis together and the water in - this will hydrate your foliage for the next few weeks. Then wrap the cling filmed oasis with wire to stop the cling film unravelling.

  • Make a hook out of thicker wire (an old wire clothes hanger will do) so you can hang the wreath on your door.




  • With secateurs, cut the foliage to the size you want and poke in to the oasis ring. You may need to use an implement with a sharp point to help make an initial hole if you are finding it difficult to prod the stems through the cling film. If you're using holly - you need gardening gloves - or ouch!


  • Keep turning the oasis ring round to make sure that you are creating an even shape and keep going till you're happy.

  •  Bob on some green berries. Bob on a door.

Finished.


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Last Note :

  • I decided I liked the "greenness" of this wreath and excluded the red berries. The Grumps says "it will be nice when it's finished i.e "where are the red berries?"  Each to their own.
  • Thank you L1 for your expert guidance and cups of tea!
  • Who's giving this a go next year?


Hi there!


Hi, I'm Sue.

Mum to Ben & George, married to the Grumps, living in suburbia, somewhere in the north of England.

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