Sunday, 8 November 2009


It all started with this one!

I make no apology for blogging about poppies again!

I told you last year how I intended to make crochet poppies in time for this years Remembrance Day and in my last post I mentioned how busy we (my friend, Ashlie and I) were in honouring the orders we were receiving - that was an understatement. I could never have imagined how popular the poppies would be. We have been absolutely unindated with orders and if it had been physically possible we could have quite easily have doubled our sales. The proceeds from the sale of the poppies, less a small amount for the purchase of the special buttons, will all go to The Royal British Legion's Poppy Appeal. I am pleased, no ecstatic, to report that I will be sending a cheque off later this week for £250.00!!!! Isn't that fantastic and it's thanks to all of you who bought a poppy for £2.00, that means 125+ poppies. People are already ordering for next year, I think we will have to start making them in June!!!

The lovely girls of Spellbound Beads in Lichfield, proudly wearing our poppies!

When I send the cheque to the Poppy Appeal I am going to write and tell them all about the reasoning behind the poppies and enclose a photograph. I really hope that they look upon our little endeavour favourably and don't see us as a threat and let us continue raising funds for such a worthwhile charity.

Today my family and I all attended the local Remembrance Service and my youngest son and I actually joined the parade through the town to the cenotaph on our local park. The turnout was very good, unfortunately a sign of the times I fear, coupled with the lovely sunny day, although there was a definite nip in the air! We found it a rather poignant service today, and upsetting at times, because today was the first Remembrance Day since my dear Grandma, Granny Franny, had sadly died.

I know a few of you that read my blog and know me either personally or elsewhere on forums etc. are already aware that my Grandma passed away a few months ago. But, for those of you who only know me through this blog, Granny Franny was in failing health for some time, but at the beginning of the summer her health deteriorated quite rapidly, but she fought to the end! She was 99 years old on 4th August, I'm not sure that she was aware that she'd reached this milestone, but I did make a point of telling her that she'd equalled the age of her Dad, my Great-Grandad, and she did have a chuckle, we're made to last in this family!!! She clung on for a few more weeks, but couldn't fight anymore and she passed away on 23rd August 2009! She was a popular lady which was reflected in the size of the congregation at her funeral and everyone sang with real gusto. People were invited to give a donation rather than flowers and the collection raised a staggering £900+, as my Mum said 'Her last fundraiser was a total success'. The monies were shared between Cancer Research UK and The Salvation Army.

Granny Franny, on her 85th Birthday!

I would like to think that Granny Franny, finally reunited with the love of her life, was looking down on us today, as we all congregated around the cenotaph, and I know that she would be chuffed to bits at the success of our poppies.

Grandma and Me.
Newly promoted to SSgt, Remembrance Day 1990!

Monday, 26 October 2009

Busy Days!

Well, it's become quite apparent that I couldn't keep up with the one a day posts. I totally underestimated how busy I'd be over the last week. I'm not going to beat myself up about it though and I'm just going to accept what will be will be and I'll post as and when I have the time. I hope you'll stick around and see what happens.

So, what have I been up to over the past week. I was busy getting ready for a jewellery party, which was a great success and a great boost to my morale after things being a bit quiet over the last couple of months. I've included a few pics of some new necklaces I made in preparation.

I also did a demo at my WI group last week as part of a Three Corners Evening. This is when there are several demos happening at the same time and groups of people move from one to the other in turn, so they get a little taster of what is being demonstrated. The other demo's on the evening were Card Making and Calligraphy. I decided to concentrate on giving a demo about chainmaille and I think it went down well, I even sold a few items. At every meeting we also have a small competition (see the Easter Bonnet from last year), last weeks competition was to make a necklace from food stuffs found in the kitchen. I submitted an entry of course, but unfortunately didn't win, that honour went to Ashlie this time. You can still see a picture of my entry below. The necklace is made from Honey Cheerios with 3 Tetley Tea Bag Pendants!!!

Still on the jewellery front, last week saw me installing a display cabinet in a local cafe. The cafe is called Humbles and is situated in the John Godber Centre (Church Hall) in Hucknall. The owner approached me a couple of weeks ago to see if I could do some workshops and promote some of my jewellery. Of course I said yes and after much preparation the cabinet was ready last Friday, I even sold an item and got an order before I'd finished setting it up!!

As if all that wasn't enough.....I've been busy making poppies!!! If you remember this time last year I made a couple of crochet poppies, one for my dear Grandma, who sadly died on 23rd August, one for my Mum and one for myself. Lots of people asked if they could have one, so I decided that I would make them this year in time for Remembrance Day and sell them to raise funds for the Poppy Appeal. I have been overwhelmed with the response and have been busy making as many as possible, with some help from my good friend, Ashlie. I will report back later how much money we have raised, but would just like to say a big thank you to everyone who has kindly bought one, or several, already.

To end the week, I went to the Bead Fair at Harrogate on Sunday. I was lucky to be offered a lift from my dear friend Kerrie and her husband, Simon. We spent a lovely day ooooohing and aaahhhing at all the beautiful beads and gemstones, and met up with our lovely friend, Mary. I was quite well behaved and went with a list, but I did splash out on some beautiful tiny Black Spinel, commonly known as Black Diamonds, which you will undoubtedly see more of at a later date. Kerrie and I wore our poppies and I was thrilled to receive some lovely comments and to get an order from Pat at Spellbound Beads, for 9 poppies, she wanted to buy one for all the lovely ladies that work in the shop!! Thank you Pat, and I hope to get a photo of you all wearing them to put on my blog at a later date.

Saturday, 17 October 2009

Happy Anniversary!

Today is our 22nd Wedding Anniversary, how is that possible!!! Not doing much because we were out last night with some friends. We went for a lovely meal at the Red Hot Buffet Shack in Nottingham and then went to the Royal Concert Hall to see The Proclaimers. It was a great night and we all thoroughly enjoyed the concert - and yes we all sang along to '500 Miles!'

Friday, 16 October 2009


Manicure that is!! Tracey, another dear friend, gave me a voucher to have a luxury manicure, so I cashed it in this morning and spent a very pleasurable hour having my hands and nails pampered. I really don't look after my nails properly, jewellery making and especially wire wrapping are not conducive with lovely looking nails, but just recently I've been trying to grow them again and was going to treat myself to a manicure once they were a decent length, well I think some little birdies had been chatting, hence the present. Clair at The Lounge in Hucknall has made a lovely job. I was going to go for a colour, but then changed my mind and went for a french polish, cos I'd never had one before, I don't think it will be the last!

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Beautiful Presents!

As I mentioned previously, it was my birthday on Tuesday and I also mentioned I had some wonderful presents, amongst which were some beautifully handcrafted gifts. I truly do have some very talented friends.

The first one I opened had been sitting on my dining room table since the beginning of last week, it was very tempting to take a peek, but I was a good girl. I knew who it was from, and therefore knew it would be amazing, and I wasn't wrong!!

This beautiful brooch was a gift from my dear friend Kerrie, you can see a more professional photograph on her blog here. Thank you Kerrie, I love it!!
The next package to open was equally stunning. It was from another beady friend, this time from Nia We are 'sisters' because when we finally met in real life it was uncannily obvious that we resembled each other in appearance, although one lives in Wales and the other in the English Midlands (my Dad said he could never have cycled all the way to Wales on his bike lol). Apparently, when she saw the beads in the next piece she thought of me straight away - I have a bit of a reputation of liking all things purple, whatever the shade, as if you didn't know by now!!

The beads are by the talented Julie Fountain of Lush Lampwork and they are strung on a handpainted silk ribbon from Diane of Sowzere Designs - beautiful.
The last gift I'm going to share with you came from my dear friend and partner in crime, Ashlie! We share a love of all things crafty and Ashlie is the one to thank for my return to the joys of knitting. She is much more proficient than me, I tend to take the scenic route. We'd already decided we would visit the Knitting & Stitching Show in Harrogate this year and it was left to Ashlie to order the tickets. Imagine my surprise, and joy, when I opened the gift below and nestled inside the most exquisite crocheted needle case was my ticket to the show plus a ticket for a workshop too!! She also gave me the mug and a small vase of flowers - love her to bits.

So, aren't I a lucky girl. Apologies for the quality of the photographs, but the weather has been horrible today, such a change from the previous few days, and I had to take them on my desk with my daylight bulb - but I think you get the idea.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Today I have been......

......... making bookmarks. I have a few dates in my diary for parties and fairs leading up to Christmas, so today I have been stocking up. Bookmarks are a great seller, they make a lovely gift/stocking filler. I use orphan lampwork beads and they never cease to get comments, often closely followed by a sale!!!

Whilst we're in jewellery mode I would like to tell you about my appearing in an international magazine!!! Many months ago I submitted a photograph to Step by Step Wire in the US. The photograph was of a piece I showed you this time last year. I asked them if they would like it for a project or for their gallery pages. It was a while before I heard anything back, but when I did they said they would be interested in featuring it in the gallery sometime in the future. I am pleased to say that my piece is in the gallery pages of the latest issue of Step by Step Wire, which is in the shops right now. It's a lovely feeling seeing one's work on the pages of such a prestigious magazine, hopefully next time they will be interested in featuring a project.

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

A Gap Year!!!

It won't have escaped your notice, but I've not been around in the blogging world for a while - took a little holiday, or rather more like a Gap Year!!! A few weeks not blogging soon turned into a few months and wham here we are almost a year since my last update. There have been times that I've wanted to blog, and times when I've just wanted to walk away and close it down for good. Suffice to say I've been doing alot of thinking over the last couple of months.

As you will see, because you're actually able to read this, I have decided to continue to blog, although I've decided to take a different route - I hope it's a journey that you will continue to accompany me on. The main difference is the blog isn't just going to be about jewellery!!!! Well it wasn't just about the jewellery before, I hear you say, and that my dear reader has been one of the problems I have been trying to come to terms with. I would some times feel slightly guilty, ok a lot guilty, that I wasn't posting images and information about my jewellery, after all that's what the blog is called 'BeaDangles Jewellery' So, I've decided to rename and rebrand!!! Jewellery will still play a part, it's an important part of my life and who I am, but I do so much more (too much sometimes!). So my new refurbished blog will feature jewellery, baking, knitting, friends, family, the mundane and not so mundane daily goings on in my life, flowers, fauna, wildlife etc etc. I'm also going to attempt a big project, I'm going to try and take a photograph every day for the next year!!! It could be of anything, some days there may be more than one, but hopefully every day will be documented in pictoral form. I'm not promising works of art, some days the photograph may be what we're having for tea that day, but I'm hoping that when I look back over the year, it will provide me, and you if you wish to tag along, with a unique snapshot of my life during this time.

So, lets start with today, as good a day as any. You see for those who don't know, today is my birthday!!! This day 48 years ago Alison Mary Green was born, it was a Friday!!! I have had a lovely day today. I have received lots of birthday wishes from friends and family far and wide, some wonderful, beautiful, practical and well thought out gifts, a fine collection of chocolates and flowers. I have been out for a lovely lunch with a very special friend, what more could I ask for.