Thursday, 3 April 2008

Taking after Mummy......

Don't you love forget-me-nots? They take me back to my childhood when the garden was full of them. They are, however taking over my small bed and every year I have to haul loads of them out!

It's been a creative few days here in the VH household. Last week the weather was dire so the children and I decided to be crafty. Now I have to tell you, quite often the words "can we paint?" fall on deaf ears in this house, I try to avoid it at all costs, the mess and most of all the clearing up afterwards put me off, cruel mother that I am. So in order to avoid poster paint armageddon we had to come up with an alternative. Inspired by all the fabulous blogs I read we borrowed a few ideas and here's what we did..........



I asked both of them to draw anything they liked. Jack chose a seaside theme and Kit chose a party scene complete with flags (bunting) and her new baby cousin, my sister and her big cousin.


They then had the choice of any fabric from my massive scrap collection (can't bear to throw even the tiniest bit away!). They decided where each piece would go and I then bonda-webbed them on and machine stitched around each piece. We stapled them to cheap canvases from the craft shop, et voila, Jack and Kitty now have their very own masterpieces in their bedrooms...............................


They're both really pleased with the results and I love the fact we've got a permanent reminder of the stage they're at at this moment in time. We've got loads more ideas in the pipeline!

Last weeks car boot purchase (found by good old Andrea) has become Kitty's new throne in the kitchen. Deciding we didn't like the orange pine effect we thought we'd throw even more colour into our already rainbow like kitchen and painted the new addition bright yellow, Kitty's favourite colour in the world.

Of course, we couldn't leave Jack out of the equation so his old chair got a coat of "letterbox red" and it looks great. As always his beloved weekly copy of "Beano" waits for his return from school.


I often wonder what my children will remember about their childhood home and whether it will influence them as they grow up. Will they become staunch "minimalists" or will they embrace colour, clutter and general chaos as I do?? Sometimes even I think there's too much in this house, it does make for much more cleaning, but I can't help it, it seems to be an inbuilt desire to surround myself with stuff and my entire family have the same affliction. May as well give into it eh!......................

Before I go, a lot of you asked which books we have been reading in our book groups. Here goes.......

The Memory Keepers Daughter by Kim Edwards - nice, easy read.

The Collector by John Fowles - bit disturbing, not one I'd have chosen but really enjoyed it.

The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini - a great book I thought, bit depressing but thought provoking.

The Summer Book by Tove Jansson - my choice after reading "life changing" type reviews about it. Didn't change my life one iota, but a nice, gentle book.

Nana by Emile Zola - A hard book to get into but once I did I really surprised myself by loving it.

Hope this helps those who asked, have a lovely weekend everyone, school holidays start tomorrow, yippeee!.............

41 comments:

Lucy Locket-Pocket said...

I really love your collaborative artworks! It is such fun stitching the children's designs but I hadn't thought of stretching them onto canvases - I'm going to have to have a go at that in the holidays!

Simone said...

I love the pictures. Children are so uninhibited with their drawing and it really comes from the heart. What background fabric did you use to bondaweb the fabric to? I would love to have a go at doing something similar with my boy.

Kathy said...

Hi Julia, absolutely adore your children's pictures. Sorry if this sounds really silly...but how did you do it ie. transfer the picture on to the canvas via the fabric? If I sound really stupid sorry-it has been a really long day! Kathy

Curlew Country said...

I absolutely love your colourful kitchen Julia, so fun of happiness and life, just what a family home should be.
What a great idea the picture are. I admit I dread the "lets paint" pleas too, all a bit of a nightmare! B is just managing to draw a few things so I think we'll give this a try on our next wet weekend. Thanks for sharing such an lovely idea!
Stephx

Miss sew n sew said...

Your childrens drawings are a fab idea and haven't they turned out well! I can see your a pro with your sewing machine. I love looking at Emilys drawing and hate to throw them away. Going to give it a go with her. I love the different coloured chairs for your children in the kitchen. I'm sure they will have fond memories of their family home when their older - its beautiful!

two hippos said...

I adore the fabric drawing master pieces, just wonderful! Such a fabulous kepsake too.

prettyshabby said...

Thats a brilliant idea..I wish they had blogs when mine were small..there would have been so many more inspiring things I could have done with them!
As Steph said, your kitchen is wonderful..a real heart of the home kitchen full of life..I definately think children are influence by their childhood homes..mine is like my grannie and grandpa's home where I spent many happy summer days and my youngest son whos 15 has definately picked up on the polka dot vintage thing! (secret yay!!)
Sairer x

Suzie Sews said...

Beautiful post and I adore the art work...might get my kids in on the act...fab.

mollycupcakes said...

Hi Julia,
Yes sorry we missed you ths weekend gone, but wouldn't of been any fun what with Daisy being so poorly.
Next time hun x
I just love the childrens pictures, they are so clever. I can't wait to do things like that with Molly and Daisy. All they do now is lots of lines and circles lol
Little darlings hehe!
Argh! more books for me to find lol I'm still on my book by Cupcake Brown which I started last year, I know I hang my head in shame. Very slow reader, just never enough time.

Have a lovely weekend sweetie.
Speak soon.
Hugs.

Catherine x

JuicyFig said...

I think you are giving your children the best possible child hood - these arethe things they remember - I have always done stuff like that with my daughter - for her first 11 years it was just the two of us - she is 16 now, and studying Art now. Her wish is to have her own vintage stall at Camden Lock or Spittlefield market, and her room is decorated in every concievable colour there is! I would even go so far as to say she is an even worse horder than I am!
they will keep those pictures for ever!

twiggypeasticks said...

you have created some gorgeous pictures there with your children. I really believe that it's the time you spend with your children and the things you do together that they will remember. My little boy is only 2 but we scribble and paint and play doh together and have lots of messy fun.
Twiggy

Clover Yard said...

oooohh, I'm completely inspired by those canvases, they look brilliant. It's funny, I was just thinking the same as you this week about what my little boy will remember about his childhood home as he sat and played our new piano for the first time. I'm sure your children will have very fond memories of happy creative times with mummy on their colourful chairs.
Carolx

claire Maraldo said...

You know what? I've been having exactly the same thoughts about whether Alexei will grow up with the same tastes as me. Probably not as my style is quite girly but I wonder as he responds favorably to the many treasures that seem to pass through our door. Roland just sighs heavily. . .
Love the canvases . . you are a talented bunch!

Vanessa said...

What a great way of using the scraps up! My daughter had a look and thought they looked great!

Ziakoko said...

What a great idea these look like modern art!I was thinking that my kids wall were looking a bit plain-though i have a feeling my boys will draw dinosaurs oozing blood-yuk!

Vintage Amethyst said...

Aahh those pictures are just so lovely, what a lovely way to spend the day.
I really love your colourful chairs too, so bright and cheery.
Love Alison x

Summer by the sea said...

I just love your homemade artwork - what a lovely way to keep 'this moment in time' forever. Like so many others that have commented on here, I think I will definitely be giving that one a go (when my daughter is old enough to do something other than scribble!) - Natalie x

Ragged Roses said...

Love the chairs, love the canvases and love a lot of those books! The pictures you finished for your children are really wonderful and I'm sure it's things like this that they'll remember when they're older and the fact that mummy let them choose the paint colour for their chairs.
Kimx

shabby chic said...

what lovely pictures , I bet they are so proud of them too. I love the wee little chairs they are lovely and colourfull.
ps I know what you mean about painting & mess !!

The Giantess said...

Your kids pics are absolutely wonderful! My kids have just broken up, will see if I can get them to do some too!

Garden girl said...

WOW- your pictures are fantastic! Our house is also full of stuff, but like you, I like to be surrounded by things and could never be accused of being minimalistic, I guess I'm just too sentimental. I can usually find room for something else...I am just about to start reading the Kite Runner, so fingers crossed!x

Anonymous said...

Love the artwork, brilliant!
Carolyn
http://willowhouse.typepad.com

Jasminé said...

Firstly, thank you so much for the comment on my blog about my dress!
I love what you did with your children's drawings, beautiful and i LOVE the painted chairs, I have a good few painted chairs found in second hand shops in my kitchen and am constantly changing their colours, what fun!
I am in the middle of reading "Memory Keepers Daughter" - really loving it!
Take care
x

Rubyred said...

Love the children's pictures,what a clever idea to put them on to canvas!The chairs look great!Your kitchen looks like a very happy place to be!
Rachel x

Deb said...

What lovely pictures your children have drawn & what a great idea to stitch their designs onto canvas! Wonderful keepsakes.

Nonnie said...

Oh those pictures are just fantastic! What a really lovely idea and it makes the pencil drawings totally come alive. Really love the new chair too. I know my childhood home definitely influenced me. Lots of Laura Ashley and it definitely didn't turn me into a minimalist!

Katherines Dream said...

I am sure your children will remember.......the chairs are stunning, how could they forget them! Love the pictures too. Family kitchens are just the best, everyone can relax and enjoy being together and they are wonderful days to look back on.Cx

BeachysCapeCodCupboard said...

I LOVE your blog! I just found it through a link on another blog. What caught my eye was that GORGEOUS project you did with your children! And what made me laugh, was that I am JUST LIKE YOU... I cringe when my kids want to paint! I usually let them do watercolors (easy clean-up), but I become a woman possessed when the poster paints come out... I think that's why my nickname became "the sargeant"! =)

the homely year said...

Hi, what a brill idea for the children's pictures...they're lovely to keep for the future! Wish I'd done that when my children were young.
And love the colour of the chairs. Who wants minimalism? - so boring!
Margaret and Noreen

Lucy @ attic24 said...

Hi Julia
i just discovered your blog yesterday and ooooo what a find you are! I have loved reading all about your home and family, we have a lot in common I think.
The stitched picture you did with your children are amazing and have inspired me to do something similar with my Little People, thank you so much for sharing.
xx

Brierley & Clover said...

Julia, thank you for your lovely comment on my blog - it's very much appreciated.

My mum hates clutter but I love collecting vintage fabric and children's books - so perhaps I'm making up for things! Love the red chair too!

She'sSewPretty said...

Those collages are the cutest things ever. I wish I had done that when my kids were young!

Clairey said...

I just discovered your blog through Attic24 and love it! A definite new daily read.

Clairey xx

retrorose said...

Thanks Julia for your kind comments. I really love the pictures, it really brings them to life. Reminds me of the Charlie and Lola patterns and colours. Your house just looks lovely.

Mary said...

love the childrens art work what memories they will have in future years

Cowboys & Custard said...

What inspired pictures and so charming!

Rosezilla said...

Wow, those drawings turned out really cute with the fabric and stitching! Great idea, thanks for sharing it.

acorn and will said...

Lovely artwork, and what a special memory for your children to have - and great use for scraps, I horde mine too, no idea what I will ever use them for! Jennifer

Lucy Bloom said...

HI Julia, glad you were inspired, now when you've made your boxes don't forget to show!
Lucy x

Linda said...

Hi Julia,
I love the idea of turning your childrens drawings into artwork, it looks fabulous. Love a bit of bright red in the kitchen.
Cheers Linda

Linnea said...

Those pieces of artwork were beautiful!! Such great memories for you and your children. I can remember my mom doing stuff like that with my brothers and I. Once we made these clay or salt dough circles and pressed our handprints in the middle of them, writing our names underneath. Cute to look back on.