Tuesday, 7 June 2016

Some Beautiful Days in June

We have kicked off the summer season with a long weekend camping at Gairloch! Our schools always get a Monday holiday at the start of June and we often try and fit in a short break, a trial run camping in preparation for the summer holidays. This year we really had our hearts set on going back to Gairloch. We spent a few nights there three years ago at the Myrtle Bank Hotel for our anniversary but really wanted to go back and camp at Big Sand. It was all touch and go right up to the last minute as our car had to go into the garage but we got it back just in time, threw everything in the boot and off we went.

Evening at Big Sand beach, Gairloch.

The weather here in Fife had been stunning all week but we hit rain half way up the A9 and it was a bit cloudy when we got to Gairloch. We could see the sun shining brightly on the Isle of Skye showing up the contours of The Quiraing and the Cuillin. 

Zooming in on The Quiraing

The campsite was great! We got a lovely spot over looking the bay with the Skye in the distance and the beach just over the dunes. My favourite kind of camping.

The weather turned out to be absolutely stunning, such a rare thing when camping! It wasn't even windy! We spent the days beach combing and found lots of starfish.

Just half an hour up the road from Gairloch is this spectacular beach at Mellon Udrigle. So perfect with white sand, turquoise water and the mountains of Assynt to the north.

Perfect picnic spot.

Another stunning beach just south of Gairloch is Red Point. I thought I had been to Red Point before but it was windy and raining and we didn't explore very far. There is a beach just down from the car park but if you walk across the sheep fields through the farm you come to this beach below.

This is where the film 'What We Did on Our Holiday' was filmed. Such an interesting beach with dunes behind, those wonderful views of the Torridon mountains and Skye beyond and that wonderfully clear blue water. We spent hours looking for treasures among the stones and shells and rock pools out round the islets. 

More starfish and this crazy monstrous thing!

We are so thankful that got such lovely weather to enjoy such a special place.

We spent our evenings back at the beach by the campsite enjoying beautiful sunsets with views out to Harris and Lewis and the Isle of Skye.

A wee fire helped keep the midgies away.

I do love a fire on the beach!

So a busy month ahead preparing for my stall at Limekilns River Festival on Saturday 2nd July and Aberfeldy Highland games on Saturday 13th August. Got a few things to make for both of those and I want to work on some new seascapes having soaked up lots of inspiration!

My Etsy shop is open as always but may be closed for a few weeks in July.

Tuesday, 17 May 2016

May Update

I will be at Pitcairngreen Village Hall Spring Fair this Saturday the 21st May

New this week are these vibrant sea green textile and glass jewellery pieces.

I also have my 2017 Calendar out. I had it made in time for Open Studios which is why it's out so early.
Open Studios was a great success with over 300 visitors and lots of work sold. I enjoyed sharing some felt making techniques and doing some short demonstrations as well. 

I can honestly say that the run up to Open Studios was pretty hectic. I feel like I have been making non stop since January. Well I have really! No time to take a complete break but at least I have less deadlines and can enjoy playing around with new ideas.

Also new are these A5 notebooks.

The original artwork for the notebook is still available.

Gardener's Cottage

I have all these new things available in my Etsy shop along with quite a few of my Textile Trinket Boxes.

Two new Seascapes are also available.

Foaming Waves

Spring Tide

I will have all this and more with me at Pitcairngreen on Saturday and available online here 

Sunday, 1 May 2016

Open Studios North Fife 7th-9th May 2016

Open Studios North Fife is just a few days away and I have been very busy preparing for it, making new pictures, jewellery, brooches and more.

You can find me Saturday 7th, Sunday 8th and Monday 9th May at venue 26, 64 Commercial Road, Ladybank. KY15 7TY

Textile, Resin and Glass Jewellery
£18 - £24

Felt Brooches £12

Harris Tweed and Felt Boxes £30 - £45

Framed Felt Art £95 - £285

Friday, 1 April 2016

Mountains, Lochs and Sea

After an incredibly busy month of March and hugely successful time at Edinburgh Yarn Festival, I took a few days off with my family. We could only stay away two nights but we made the most of it and packed lots of fabulously inspiring scenery into our trip!

We usually head for Skye in the Easter holidays but didn't have time to go all that way this year so we stayed in Fort William and made the most of the area in the short time we had. The beautiful surroundings and wonderful leisure facilities at the Ben Nevis Hotel made for a really great short break.

On our way to Fort William we stopped at the Nevis Range and took the cable car up the mountain. It was great fun being above the snow line and we walked out to the viewpoint where we could see rain falling in the distance over Loch Lochy (above) and this funnel of mist rising from a corrie (below) opposite Fort William.

We've been to Mallaig a couple of times before but didn't get a chance to stop in Glenfinnan. On our way out there we passed this wee hoose that I couldn't resist a photo of.

Loch Shiel below was beautifully calm and serene and as it was quite early we had the place to ourselves for a while.

Further west, we went round by Arisaig and stopped at Traigh. Lots of lovely white sandy horse shoe shaped beaches run along the coast here with breathtaking views out to the Isles of Eigg, Rhum and Skye. I really do love it here. We camped here once during the summer but it was busy and the weather was rubbish. I enjoyed this visit much more as it was quiet and the sun shone for us in between short showers. 

I really enjoy pottering along a beach just taking in the sounds of the water, the views out to sea and the bits and pieces found on the sand.

We sheltered from a heavy shower in the car but didn't want to rush away and I'm so glad we didn't as this stunning rainbow appeared and it dried up enough to go for a longer walk.

I couldn't resist another photo of another wee white cottage just in the right place below.

You can just about make out Eigg and Rhum in the distance.

 We enjoyed tea and scones OUTSIDE in Mallaig! It actually felt warm in the sun but soon came on rain again. By the time we drove round to Loch Morar the clouds were brooding over the surrounding mountains.

This is an area I could never tire of and I hope we can go back before too long. I'd really like to do some kayaking in these lovely waters. 

Next day we took a little drive around by Kinlochleven. The mountains were just stunning with their dusting of snow and that particular rusty brown colour at this of year.

The weather improved again so we went back up to Glen Nevis and drove to the very end of the road where you can park up and walk to An Steall waterfall. It was a brilliant walk, really enchanting going high along the gorge and emerging into the meadow with the waterfall crashing down the mountain at the other end. 

My husband and daughter traversed the wire bridge over the river Nevis but as we weren't going on any further I didn't really see the point! I'd have had a go if I'd had my gloves with me.

There was a wee bothy on the other side which looked cute through the trees. Another photo for my 'wee hoose' collection!
What I loved about this walk was that it took us right into the heart of the the mountains. There's no way I'd attempt climbing up Ben Nevis but I really enjoyed being at the foot of it and would happily have walked further and spent longer there if we'd had time.

The next few weeks will be spent preparing for Open Studios North Fife on 7th, 8th and 9th May.
I have just added a few things to my Etsy shop today including some Trinket Boxes and Sheep Jewellery.

My venue for Open Studios will be at 64 Commercial Road, Ladybank KY15 7JS. 
We'll be there from 10 - 6 each day.
All contributed content © Aileen Clarke