Monday, 31 May 2010

Bank holiday

As today is a Bank Holiday it meant I didn't have to work! Yay! I'm not good at Mondays except when the banks are shut.

I spent a lovely afternoon weaving, ah the bliss! I haven't done any weaving for what feels like ages. Remember I said I wanted to make a wall hanging? Well today I finished getting the warp on the loom and started.

I made up a 400 end warp in black, navy and plum Axminster carpet wool. It's a lot more slubby than I expected but it has a fabulous texture. This is the perfect project to try out the technique whose name I can't for the life of me remember! It begins with a 'C' and you can see it below..

I'm rather pleased with how it's going so far. More pics soon.

I hope you're having a great day, whether it's a holiday for you or not.

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Museums and art galleries

We were so impressed with the museums and art galleries that NY has to offer. After toddling up the Empire State we went to the Museum of Modern Art. This was a real treat and they had a great selection of exhibits once we had got past the b*llocks on the ground floor. There was a woman sitting on a chair just staring and members of the public could go and stare back for as long as they wanted, 20 minutes or so. Give me a painting any day! This was the first exhibit we saw and I thought I might be disappointed because I feared it might all be like this. But then through a set of doors we went and the rest was fantastic.

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We also went to the American Museum of Natural History and the Metropolitan Museum of Art, both of which held great collections on just about everything. This first set is from the American Museum of Natural History and contains images from their space centre, a beautiful window, a Chinese wedding carriage, tribal masks and hats, and some wonderful beaded Native American clothing.

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I think these last ones were from the Metropolitan Museum of Art, but I could be wrong!

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Friday, 28 May 2010

Empire State & Katz Deli

The first place we went to on our trip was to see the Empire State building. It was Monday morning and not at all overrun with tourists which, by the looks of the vast but empty snaking queue lines meant we had chosen a good time. It’s a phenomenal building especially to think that it stands proud of the surrounding buildings and yet was built nearly a century ago. It really sets the tone for the city. It must have been received with such awe when it was first built and all the other existing buildings would have been much smaller. I have to say it was expensive to go up it - $70 for two – but it was a great experience!


This was a view from the top which Ivan tiled to make one big photo:


Here’s one of the entrance in all it’s Art Deco splendour:


Another day, Ivan was keen to sample the culinary delights of a New York breakfast and where better to head than Katz Delicatessen? This is the place where Meg Ryan enjoyed more than she expected in When Harry Met Sally – you know, the, “I’ll have what she’s having” scene.

It was just around the corner from our hotel so we called in and ended up with rather more than we expected to! Although not in that sense, I hasten to add, just that the food portions were HUGE. Without really knowing what we were ordering, we each received no less than THREE “sunny side up” eggs on buttered toast, with a substantial salami, a bowl of chips each (chunky ones not skinny fries, tea and orange juice. I practically had to roll out of the place – three eggs!!!

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Thursday, 27 May 2010

New York, New York!

Yes, that’s right, my absence of late has been because we took ourselves off on a trip to the Big Apple! Woo hoo!

Impressions? Well, it was awesome, manic, cultured, wildly varied, textured, noisy, exciting, stylish, bright. It’s a place of huge contrasts – the colossal polished skyscrapers versus the gritty realism of the smaller streets, particularly where we stayed which was on Lower East Side of Manhattan.

I have decided to break the photos down into several posts so this one centres around the general architecture around Lower East Side. I hope you enjoy!

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This part of the city was incredibly textured with the brick and grime and graffiti – all the buildings are unique and there’s an amazing sense of layering especially when you look down at the buildings from high up. We loved the fire escapes on the front of the buildings too.

Monday, 10 May 2010


This weekend we had the pleasure of having Ivan’s youngest sister to stay for the weekend. The question was, how do you entertain a 17 year old on a rainy Saturday in Sussex?


Answer: Take her to Brighton!


First stop was the Pier for amusements, fish & chips and rides! There was one ride called the ‘Mouse’ (no idea why!) which looked quite innocuous but soon turned out to be of the white knuckle variety because of the way it flung your carriage around really high above the sea.




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Next stop was the shops, then the Royal Pavilion, a hot chocolate break and home via some bizarre house boats.




Tuesday, 4 May 2010


I love Agatha Christie. She led a hugely varied and interesting life, not all of it happy. Her stories, I think, are brilliant still today – she had such a wonderful imagination and ability to entertain through words. She has sold a staggering 2 billion books to date – 2 billion!!! Her work has only been outsold by the Bible and Shakespeare. What an incredible achievement.

I have a small collection of her books in various tatty, pre-owned, paperback volumes however her publisher, Harper Collins, brought out a reprinted series of her work in hardback not so long ago – the Facsimile edition. Amazon are always sending me tempting emails when they release another of her titles and I just can’t help myself!

“The Seven Dials Mystery” has just arrived. Aren’t they just so fabulous?




Monday, 3 May 2010


Bank holiday progress on our house! Ivan put the hall shelf up which looks great :)

The pottery is from The Biscuit Factory in Newcastle. I think it looks great with the black Nelson bench. I love the texture it gives to the house. Now we have a space above the shelf for a painting, print or wall hanging. Hmm...

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