Thursday 28 February 2019

Art therapy

Energy by Jenny Stacy
Waterfall by Jenny Stacy
Colour play by Jenny Stacy

Did you know that painting gives you energy? I didn't.  I usually paint paper to tear it up again and use in collage cards. But this week I painted 'Colour Play' and found I didn't want to tear it up. I liked it as it was. And that same day I was on my feet all day, full of energy.

I decided to cover a piece of paper with paint every day. A painting a day. I get up early and have time to do a painting or write emails before getting ready for work. I highly recommend doing this and I guess that practice makes perfect - well not perfect but you know what I mean!

Are you a lark or an owl? My brain goes to sleep as darkness falls but I can achieve quite a lot first thing in the morning. Definitely a lark. But if you are an owl you could paint at night. Art therapy - in an ideal world everyone would have access to it. I heard on the radio that one forward thinking medical practice actually prescribes it. Making or painting and getting absorbed by what you are doing is so beneficial. I expect you know this already. Visitors to the shop say the trouble is finding time to be creative in their busy lives but they really want art in their day...

By the way the top painting I did today. The middle one was the day before yesterday and the bottom one was yesterday's effort. If I get any comments I'll be encouraged to show you further daily daubs. If not I'll share other things instead. Enjoy your day.

Sunday 24 February 2019

Just buy a card!

The latest knitted boy!
A girl with pig tails! Knitted by Jenny Stacy

As a shop keeper struggling to find the rent each month I am getting increasingly frustrated with the 'We're just looking' brigade! Before I had a shop I am sure I used to go into pretty shops to look around and often leave empty handed. But from the other side of the counter every sale, however small, counts towards all the overheads a shop has to pay every month regardless of how much (or little) money has been taken!!

If everyone who came through the door bought just one card ( and the starting price for a card in Handmade Happiness is just £1.95) it would make a difference.

Ironically it is just those people who love the shop the most and tell me how beautiful/ special/ 'I could buy it all' it is, that don't spend. The quiet, purposeful customer who knows exactly what she wants and buys it or the hurrying men who have to get something but want to be out of the door as quickly as possible are the ones who contribute to paying the rent.

In these Brexit-anxious days most people are trying not to spend. But please, we all need cards. Buy one now for when you need it. HH has a great selection.

And to those enthusiastic people who love to come in and be inspired but never buy, you may find that  the next trip you make to Handmade Happiness may be a waste of a journey. It will have closed down and you will be really disappointed. Then you may wish that you had supported the shop by buying something there just be keep it open for you to enjoy 'just looking'...

Saturday 16 February 2019

More knitted dolls and the most unromantic card ever!

I've enjoyed knitting these little dolls ...
Imagine receiving this on Valentine's Day!!

This week I have been using leftover yarn to knit little men. I was intending to knit three little women so each man could have a partner but two of the ladies turned into little boys. And actually I like the little boys best.

I feel desperately sorry for anyone who received an unromantic card on Valentines Day! I spotted this one and hid it behind lots of nicer ones, hoping no-one bought it! It takes the prize along with another one I saw with just a picture of a sloth on it.

I agree with people who are reminding us that Valentines Day is a chance to think of all the people we love - partners of course, but also children, our parents, grandchildren and good friends. And to tell them that!

Friday 8 February 2019

New in the shop and creative happenings

Little knitted men. 
Niloo Wickramasinghe's beautiful ceramic pots
Rubecula Thread's new purses. Knitted and lined with velvet backs.
Spring flowers for a dark and rainy winter's day!

 It's official! I've been talking about doing workshops and free 'creative sessions' in the shop for ages and yesterday I sent out an email to all those who have come in to the shop asking about workshops.

A couple of years ago I rented Winton House at night and we had a series of successful Handmade Happiness workshops there but now I want to do something in the shop during the day because frankly it's too darn quiet at this time of year and it would be great to have the company of like minded people sitting round the table making something gorgeous while enjoying a good chat!

These 'creative sessions' will be free of charge. And there will also be once a month workshops to learn something and use materials provided. These will cost £20 and will be bookable in advance as there is only room for 6 people at a time. The first one on Experimental Knitting will take place on Wednesday February 20th. Email for more info at