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Sunday 3 June 2012


Hi everyone

Half-way through an amazing weekend for the UK - wish the weather had been as enthusiastic as everyone taking part, but it wouldn't be England if it wasn't wet, would it?  Today has been an incredibly long day for the Queen and still more entertainment to go, followed by lighting a beacon at 10.30 pm - think she deserves a bit of a lie-in tomorrow.

It has been a bit hush-hush up to about 2 - 3 weeks ago, but my brother-in-law's family business (Albert E Chapman)  made the thrones for the Royal Barge.  As you can imagine, this has been very exciting for everyone involved and the finished thrones looks fantastic.  They have had numerous newspapers and television crews visiting the company during the last few weeks and there are various articles, reviews and photographs throughout the internet.  Unfortunately the ones I have are all copyrighted, so I cannot include them in my post, but if you managed to watch the programme on BBC this afternoon, you will have seen some fantastic shots of the thrones and the surrounding banquettes.   The company has had the prestige of Appointment to Her Majesty the Queen Upholsterers and Soft Furnishers for many years so they are very familiar with working in the Royal Palaces. 

The weather was pretty bad at times, but it certainly didn't dampen (forgive the pun) anyone's spirits - such a great pageant.  Everyone that has worked on the Royal Barge was invited to a viewing area set up on the Millennium Bridge.  Now, I wonder if the Queen would like to change her Christmas card-maker this year???

We had planned to celebrate the Jubilee with a group of our neighbours by having a BBQ in our garden today - however, as the weather forecast was so grim we agreed during last week to move it to tomorrow as the forecast looked much better - maybe not much sun, but it should be dry.  I hope so, as we have had many 'happy' BBQs in wet and windy weather, so could do without another one.  Please Mr Sunshine, shine tomorrow afternoon and evening.

As promised, at long last, a photograph of my first pot - it has been biscuit-fired (not too sure what that is at the moment, but reading up about pottery as we speak).  In my session last week I glazed it with a semi-matt white glaze.  I decided I didn't want a strong colour for this first one but not too sure if I have gone a bit crazy with the glaze.  Unfortunately, I may not know for many weeks how it will turn out as I have to wait until there is a kiln full of similar temperature items.  It could be next term - good job I plan to re-enrol.

Thank you everyone who suggested a glue-gun and Pinflair in respect of my question last week for glueing my hearts to the willow wreath.  I purchased a Dremel Glue Gun and will finish off my wreath during the coming week and post the final pic next Handmade Monday.

I have 'rush' orders for a couple of cards - the usual mix of interesting and unusual - both needed by Wednesday.  I will photograph them once finished and post the pics on here next weekend.  To give you an idea one is for a person who supports Chelsea football club, likes a particular local pub, is a Chaplain at a local school and the list goes on.  The other is perhaps a little easier - I wish.  Watch this space.

I recently made two baby fabric items using the same method as I have for my wreaths.  Both are made with 2" squares of material fixed with glue into polystyrene balls and each one has a ribbon attached: blue for a boy and pink for a girl.  As those of you who have carried out this work know, the hardest work is involved in cutting up the squares.

A big thank you to Badger Boo for a great Friday Guest blog post - he really is a lovely dog and writes a very good story.  If you haven't had the chance to read it yet, please do - he loves comments and will reply to all of them.  If you would like to join Badger Boo and be one of my guest bloggers, please do get in touch:  As always I don't mind what the topic of your post is: your business, anything craft-related, running a business, hobbies, holidays. etc.  It is a great way for both you and I to gain new followers and some good promotion if you are in business.

The forecast for tomorrow looks good - no rain from early morning onwards, so perhaps our BBQ will be completed without the use of umbrellas.  I hope so.

I hope you enjoy the rest of the Jubilee Bank Holiday and I will be back on  Wednesday with my mid-week blog and don;t forget to visit my fellow bloggers on Handmade Monday.  Lovely blogs and lovely work to see.



  1. Ooh famous in a round about sort of way, do we have to bow? lol.

    The pot looks very good bisque or biscuit is the first firing to harden enabling application of colour, you can apply colour to greenware (raw state) but have to be careful as very fragile, normally a wash and fine detail painting to greenware then glaze, refire on bisque.

    Hope the weather improves for your BBQ, so annoying weeks without rain an now oodles of the wet stuff

  2. Wow what an honour to make the thrones, saw them on TV! Your first pot looks really pretty. The baby baubles are so cute. Hope a good week. Ali x

  3. Amazing about the thrones! How great is that! Loving your first pot - very nice. Glad you are going to sign up again and continue. The baby decorations are lovely too - can imagine they would take a while. I couldn't get your blog to load at first and sent you a fb message - but must have been a little gremlin as its ok now - so disregard frantic message! Mich x

  4. Glad to see your posts are back!! The vase is looking good, an exciting process.

  5. Love the pot, it's a pity you will have to wait so long to complete the firing.
    The baby items look pretty, I love the ribbon you have used.

    I love the story behind the thrones, I watched on tv and they looked lovely. :o)

    Jan x

  6. What a lovely accolade for your family Jill. As to cards, you only want to put 'By appointment' on the back of them, lol. Wouldn't that be a dream then.Pot is looking great. I loved going to pottery, I can't put my finger on it but there is something very satisfying about messing with clay.
    Baby pompoms look beautiful.
    Do hope the weather holds for your BBQ tomorrow. Have fun.

  7. Fingers crossed for better weather tomorrow for your BBQ. I hear it will be a better day all round.

  8. I saw the thrones - what a great opportunity.

    Our village lunch went ahead today, we hardly got wet at all! BBQ'd and played croquet.

    Can't wait to see your pot in full colour x.

  9. A beautiful pot, I don't think that I would have the patience to wait so long!
    How long did the thrones take to make, they are stunning.

  10. Wow the thrones looked really cool, what an honour for your family.

    Love the baby balls, although I would be sorely tempted to play with them myself BOL

    BB xxx

  11. Your pot is looking good- I always like the way things look biscuit fired, sometimes think it's a shame to have to glaze them! But I'm sure it'll be a lovely finished piece.

  12. looooooove your pot! well done for getting it this far, i'm sure the glaze will look fab and i look forward to seeing it completed! :)

    how exciting about the thrones! my mum lives in Richmond and she sent me a photo of the barge which, as you probably know, was moored there for some time while they were building it - it is quite magnificent!

  13. Good luck with your bbq and your first pot looks very impressive!

  14. Unfortunately i am working for the whole bank holiday weekend so am missing all the jubilee celebrations, the thrones sound fab tho and how great to have been involved in creating something so special.
    Your pot looks really pretty.

  15. I saw the thrones today and commented on how great they looked.Little did I know that I 'knew' someone who had something to do with them!
    Love your pot-it looks great!

  16. I love the pot! And I am also envious of the celebration for the Jubilee. We have nothing like that here in the states.

  17. What amazing opportunity your family had. Love the baby goodies.

  18. The pot looks beautiful! Hope you don't have to wait to long to see it finished. Hopefully, it's dry for your BBQ - enjoy :-)

    Alison x

  19. Wow you have been busy, congratulations to the family for making the Queens thrones. I love the blue & pink baby fabric items, so unusual. Have a good week, hope you get everything done.

  20. Your vase looks fab as do the baby balls. Can imagine how many 2"squares were needed for each. Hugs mrs A.

  21. wow, what a fab family link to the Jubilee!

  22. Hope the weather was better for your bbq than it was for mine!! Nothing a handful of umbrellas couldn't sort out though.

    Congratulations on the claim to fame - my only claim to fame is that my great great grandad built a part of the titanic engine and we all know how that ended!!!

  23. Wow what an honour for your brother in law! I didnt see the pageant as I was working but i will definitely make an effort to look at the pics now!
    The vase looks great, looking forward to seeing the finished article.
    Hope it dtayed dry for your barbie :)


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