Thursday, January 28, 2010


Today marks the day HenryVIII died in 1547 aged 55. I don't have any souvenirs of his reign, but I do have this cross stitch sampler worked by me from a D.M.C kit on 16ct aida using 2 strands of thread. I was lucky enough to be in London a few years ago when the huge Cross Stitch Fair was on at Olympia and this was one of many kits I came home with, some still waiting to be stitched.
The Palace of Richmond at the top of the sampler was a favourite of Henry's until he decided Hampton Court Palace was better. Richmond Palace was later sold and demolished for it's stone in the mid 1600's.
The clothes and posture of Henry in the design are based on a portrait of Henry painted by Hans Holbein in 1537 when the King was at the height of his power and prestige.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Australia Day

Today is Australia Day, the anniversary of Capt. Arthur Phillip arriving in Sydney Cove with the first fleet in 1788. As well as being such an Anglophile and a lover of all things Royal this post is to show I am also a proud Aussie. whose family first came here as convicts in 1806. I am proudly displaying my flag so it can be seen by any passing cruise liner, container ship or oil tanker---well I exaggerate a bit here, but maybe a canoe will drift past.
Here are my shoes, hat, bag to wear and flag to wave for the day. My elegant shoes state that I am a Purebred Australian.

And a traditional lunch of meat pie and tomato sauce. No self respecting sauce bottle should be seen without a crochet jacket, although difficult to see it does have the word 'sauce' crocheted along the middle so it won't be put on the wrong bottle by mistake. My hand embroidered cloth with koalas was bought at a fete a few years ago.

No, it's not Bondi. My local uncrowded beach that I like to walk along and paddle.

Here are my feet having a beauty treament, sand and salt water are so good for the feet and so relaxing. Though I love the beach I have not been for a swim in the surf since I was 16 and was caught in a rip (strong undercurrent) with my sister and we had to be rescued by lifesavers. Now I stay down the shallow end of pools.
My 5xgreatgrandmother Mary was transported from England to Australia in 1806 for stealing fabric. She is buried in the pioneer cemetery at Liverpool N.S.W which is right outside the huge Westfield shopping Mall and only 10 min. walk from Spotlight with all that fabric, I think that is so sad. I wonder if she would like my collection of cat fabrics that I am going to do something clever with one day. My son now lives at Liverpool and I visit Mary's grave and sometimes leave flowers for her.
Mary met up and had a relationship with a convict from another ship, my 5xgreatgrandfather Enoch, transported for bigamy and forgery. They had 2 sons ,but Enoch soon died and Mary died aged in her 80's a respectable married woman, having married the superintendant of Liverpool jail.
Family history is also one of my passions and I am happy to have these 2 interesting convicts on my tree.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

crocheted apron

Went to a local antique fair yesterday, even though the forecast was for a hot 40c degree+ day I could not stay away. So glad I went and found this beautiful crocheted apron. Never seen one like it before but a quick Google search found a pattern for an almost identical apron in a 1947 magazine so I think I can safely say this one is circa late 1940's. Also found patterns for knitted aprons, so impractical, but so very pretty.
This apron almost jumped into my bag screaming-buy me*buy me which I did and for a very reasonable price.
Lucky for me a friend came with with me to the fair or I might have missed these two embroidered aprons, I really should pay her a spotters fee. I was busy being dazzled by some royal items that were way beyond my budget when told about the aprons. I thought them both bargains as some with embroidered ladies can be quite expensive. Both are expertly embroidered and I love it when the dress is filled in with tiny stitches. The blue lady apron has hand crocheted edging.

The top of the arch on this apron forms the pocket and it also has a hand crocheted edge. I love the scissors the lady is holding in one had. This apron shows some wear and has been washed, the blue dress apron looks never washed or worn.

I couldn't leave the fair without a royal item and found this Silver Jubilee pen from 1977. Can't tell if it works or not as I will never take it out of the packaging.
The bear holding the pen came from the Buckingham Palace shop on my last trip, his top reads "God Save the Queen".
The fairs are run by Rotary Club and they serve tea, sandwiches and delicious homemade cakes so that is also part of my day out.

Friday, January 22, 2010

William, Charlotte

Found another souvenir of William in my collection, this one a bag showing William on one side and Diana and her 2 boys on the other. An ebay purchase from America.
Below is Charlotte and she has spotted that coronation belt with the dangly medallion. (see 2 posts ago) She has that "don't mess with me I'm busy" look on her face.

Here she is having a good swipe at it.

Now you see it-now you don't and the medallion is swinging

Please take your tail and play somewhere else Charlotte, I'm busy with my blog.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Prince William in Sydney

Prince William is visiting Sydney and I didn't get to see him, I was NOT one of those lucky ones in the crowd cheering and waving. My 2 princely grandsons came to visit today so I had to make a difficult choice. William or my boys-and I had a very nice day with my boys. I am surprised at how popular his visit has been, lots on the news and in the papers.
Here I must have a small boast. I SHOOK HANDS WITH PRINCE WILLIAM.
Yes I did. It was at the Queen's Golden Jubilee in 2002. I was in the very front of the crowd in The Mall just down from Buckingham Palace (I had to stay there all the night before to secure my place) after the Queen went past in THE GOLD COACH and then went to an official lunch,the younger royals did a walkabout down The Mall. William came to my side of the Mall and along with lots of others I stuck my hand out and he shook it. Poor William looked so young and shy then and had his head down the whole time, but he did shake my hand.
The only souvenirs I have of Willian in my collection, this mug to celebrate his birth, a thimble for his birth and a thimble for his 21st birthday. Oh and teapot milk jug and sugar bowl for his birth I showed in an earlier post.
I think I did this cross stitch for William's 21st, the only chart I could find of him and it is not a good one, I need to look for something better. I've never had any luck (or skill) designing my own charts.
Come back soon Prince William.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Coronation unusual embroidery and Diana

Not sure if this tray is for the Coronation 1953 or the Royal Visit 1954, it has the state emblems and is worked in wool tapestry then put under glass and made into a tray. I bought it at a local antique fair. Pretty clock below is worked in petit point with very tiny stitches and is for the coronation of GeorgeVI in 1937. It was an ebay purchase from the U.K and I think the postage cost more than the clock.
I think this is filet crochet and could have been meant to be a tea cosy by the shape of it but I stitched it onto a cushion cover to better display it.

And below is a teacosy embroidered in cutwork and this side shows THE COACH. At the top is the year 1937.

The other side of the cosy showing cutwork crown and GVIR

Below is the entrance to my Diana room, the flags at the top of the door are from the coronation 1937. I found another diplay form at the markets yesterday and so am able to put on display the tee shirt on the right with some gold (only coloured) coronation jewellery. The chain belt is from 1953 and the necklace has GeorgeV and Mary from the coronation 1911 on the medallion.

All these pics and not cat in sight-no they haven't moved out because of overcrowding, they are just having a nice long sleep and so allowing me a bit of time to post.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

New Doll house,cats and Diana chair

Ive done it again!! Could not resist this sad neglected doll house at a bargain price in the Salvation Army store this week. This will be my third doll house and I love to renovate and bring them back to life. I hope Emily is giving her approval here. Yes Emily I will get your help choosing colour schemes etc.
As you can see I already have tenants looking the house over, but they are hard bargainers when it comes to the amount of rent to pay and do not have a good credit rating. The attic room is not quite 1/12 scale but might make a maids room, with the tenants approval of course.

Below is another project to keep me busy. I bought the chair this week at a 2nd hand shop and will cover it, seat and back with the Charles and Diana wedding fabric I already had. I bought the fabric on ebay and it is left over fabric from men's souvenir ties made for THE wedding. The fabric is strong and suitable for upholstery but of course no one will be allowed to sit on the chair (I think my guests know better by now) and I will somehow fit it into the Diana room.
I was going to cover my 4 dining chairs as there is enough fabric, but then thought even though I live in a house that is almost a museum and a homage to royalty, run by Charlotte and Emily it still is nice to be able to sit down to eat.

Below is a close up of the fabric.
All the pics. in this post are before the renovations. I will show the completed projects later when finished. No time frame given as I can't work under pressure and am easily distracted.

My New Years resolution/ if one thing comes into the house, 2 have to go out.
The girls looked worried for a minute but I have reassured them, told them they are not the 2 things. Maybe I have some old clothes? no I'm still wearing them, or the stove could go as I don't like to cook, or I could just give up resolutions until next year.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Prawns Lake Illawarra

Prawning last night in Lake Illawarra just off my verandah. The first prawners were out at sunset and by the time I went to bed there were lots more people out. No boat needed, it's possible to just walk in with a net, container to put your catch in and light. The Lake is famous for prawns and this year has been very good. Not that I've ever tried it, I like to admire the view from shore and can't think of anything worse than standing in the Lake in the dark And here is what all the fuss is about, not the oysters on the edge of the plate, but those prawns in the middle with their eyes still on.
Life is too short to peel a prawn I say!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010


Three samplers showing the GOLD COACH that I love so much. The one above was worked by me from a D.M.C kit and the coach is worked in gold beads. I've never tried beading before but think it looks effective and I'll try anything if that coach is involved, click on the pic to get the full effect. Because of the beads there is no glass in the frame and I had to take it down from high on the wall to photograph and can now see it needs a wash and still has red dust on it from that dust storm weeks ago. Collecting and dusting should go together but I have found they rarely do.
Gold coach again and one of my favourites (I think I say that about all of them)
this was an ebay purchase and came in very bad condition. It reeked of damp,was covered in mildew and has rotted away in one corner. The dark shadow above the Abbey is mildew I couldn't remove as I didn't want to leave it soaking too long in case I was left with nothing and the surround covers the rotting corner. I hope I have saved it for another 50 years. It is a coronation sampler and the Queen can be seen sitting in the coach. All the damage was fully described when I bought it but I do like a challenge

Another Gold Coach coronation sampler, beautifully embroidered, sadly not by me and I have'nt found a frame to fit yet so it is displayed on a board. Shows the horses and coach leaving the Palace and heading to Westminster Abbey. Some samplers come, like this one did with no fabric left outside the embroidery and one I bought was the size of a tablecloth with the embroidery the size of a doiley in the middle.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Charlotte's pillow

Charlottes very own look alike pillow, I bought the panel in Spotlight this week when I went to their sale. Below Charlotte is supervising the cutting out, then posed next to the finished item.
My decorating tip #1. Always make sure your pillows match your cats.
Now I really must find a cat panel to match Emily as I don't like to play favourites.

Friday, January 1, 2010

Royal Sampler

Happy New Year to Everyone and now Christmas is over it is back to the serious business of collecting, stitching and reading about Royals and not forgetting to give my 2 beautuful cats a fair share of the limelight.I cross stitched this sampler on 14ct aida from a chart bought from the U.K last year. It was simple to stitch though I did think the horse would never end and I wanted to start on the Queen. I always do my own framing using cheap frames I buy and as it was hard to find a frame to fit I put ribbon down the side and I think it quite effective.
This is my work in progress from a kit bought on ebay last year, it's for the Queen's Golden Jubilee but I am going to get ahead of myself and change it to the Diamond Jubilee. Only 2 years to go and I know the Queen will make it, I will wait till the official jubilee colours are released then complete it. Clever!!!

Two of my favourite Christmas presents, Royal Books. The one on the left has very detailed information about the palaces, some I have visited and some no longer exist and a forward written by Prince Charles.
The book on the right has highlights from each year of her reign and all her Christmas messages included.

There could not be a new year post without Charlotte and Emily being busy as usual. I was cleaning the Diana room, the Princess Diana quilt was in the wash as it had cat hair over it, the mattress was upended so I could vacum and here's Charlotte watching from the mattress edge ready to point out anything I missed.

Catching up on some sewing in the quiet time between Christmas and new year and here is Emily keeping me company, isn't she sweet? and like her sister such a help.