Looking at my previous blog posts, I'm going to stick with the reoccurring theme of TIME MOVING SO BLOODY QUICKLY! I mean, here we are at the end of another month, AGAIN! It's OK though, as it means I get to share some more favourite moments with you all...
From a personal point of view, April started very nicely with spending Easter Sunday hiking the Ivinghoe Beacon Ridgeway trail, a very nice wander through woodland and up and over the hills (the closest hills to where we live in Cambridge - everywhere is SO FLAT!)
It was a lovely day and the weather was kind to us, if you saw my update on social media you'll have seen it wasn't without a few hiccups (see photo & caption below)... but The Beard and I enjoyed the day none the less and it was really nice to actually find some sort of hill to walk up without driving for hours!
hello BIRTHDAY BOY
The month continued VERY nicely too, with a day out in glorious sunshine for The Beard's birthday. We had a lovely day with friends, sipping coffee in the sunshine, eating ALL THE FOOD at the amazing, recently refurbished Restaurant 22, punting down the river, gelato and beers by the Mill Pond. A very Cambridge day out and I think it's safe to say the Birthday boy enjoyed himself. We even had a cheeky birthday burger at our favourite burger place too (naughty!)
hello CHEESE FEST!
A couple of months ago, my little sister Jennie, asked me to keep a certain date free and to get myself to Leicester train station to meet her for a surprise day out. I bloody LOVE surprises so was excited before I even knew what I was in for!
The first surprise was seeing my Mum walking down to meet me with my sister and as we walked down from the station Jen handed me a ticket... you can imagine my delight when at the top in big letters it said CHEESE FEST!
When we got to the Athena (which is a beaut of a building!) we were in awe of so many stalls full of cheeses from around the world, not to mention other savoury (hello scotch eggs) and sweet treats! There were stalls serving Mac & Cheese, Poutine, Toasties and waffles, there was live music and even Ian Beale from Eastenders was on stage cooking up a cheese storm - that tickled my sister no end! Apparently he's big into cheese and he and his wife have just launched a new gin too! WHO KNEW?!
We all had the best time wandering around the stalls, smelling all the cheese, tasting all the samples and just chattering away, it was CHEESE-TASTIC and one of the most brilliant surprises! My sister knows me so well and I definitely have my Mum to blame for my love of cheese so it was the perfect adventure.
After our cheese feasting, we had some time to kill before we needed to get our trains and as the Sunshine was on our side we decided to take a slow stroll over to Abbey Park. We used to visit the ruins and chase each other around the walls when we were little as our Grand Aunt & Uncle lived in Leicester. It was just as beautiful as I remember with all the flowers and the walls of the ruins (which seemed smaller - doesn't everything as you grow up!).
After wandering about the park we headed back down the river and into the town centre for one last stop off. News had reached my greedy little ears that the Nottingham Doughnut Company had recently opened a new store in Leicester... it would have been rude not to, right?
I cannot thank my sister enough for such a wonderful day out! (LOVE YOU SQUIDGE!) Not that I needed any more reasons to get excited about it but I am EVEN MORE EXCITED about what she has been cooking up with my friends for my hen do next month! EEEK!
what about work?
OK, OK, I know, it probably seems that I don't get any work done with all these days out and mini adventures but I promise I do! They are just a small snippet of some of the fun, personal faves from April but I have some just as happy and enjoyable faves on the work front too.
As well as continuing to work on lots of GORGEOUS custom kitties and portraits for people this month, I've been sneaking a couple of new products into the shop. There will be plenty more to come once Summer arrives but for now, here's a peek at one new pin and a slightly new format.
Who remembers those brilliant Trio adverts?!? "Trio, Triiiiiiio, I want a Trio and I want one now!" Sadly, I'm not about to tell you I have chocolate for you, but I do have a different kind of Trio - a pin trio! YAY!
The cheese and biscuit pins have been around for quite a while now and the concept of little pin sets have been with me since the beginning of my 'pin making career' (that's a thing, right?). And after launching a cheeky Mistletoe and Wine set over Christmas, I knew the wine would have to go on to greater things throughout the year... like joining forces with my favourite snack based pin set to create a new PIN TRIO!
This also got me thinking about my other pin duos and if any of them could use some extra friends... The Gin pin already has his two juicy sidekicks, Lemon and Lime, which you can now also buy as a trio set. I have also been hoarding two new kitty pins which will make up some new kitty trios soon too but the MOST EXCITING thing... is that I have so many ideas for MORE combos and new designs now! Turning these ideas into real life make take a while (busy Summer ahoy!) but I'll give you a little clue as to what the theme might be...
hello NEW STOCKISTS
As well as being excited about new work bubbling away (sorry I can't share more right now!) I am also THRILLED to be able to announce two new Hello Sunshine stockists. New places wanting to stock Sunshine is ALWAYS exciting but when two come along and they are BOTH independent businesses you are already OBSESSED with and LOVE then it just takes it to another level!
I am over the moon to be able to tell you that you can now by a small selection of PINS and STUD EARRINGS over on the one and only LUCY & YAK's website! Eeeeek! I mean, I already live in my pairs of dunagrees from them so to think other lovely folks may be purchasing Sunshine to wear with their Lucy & Yak's makes me happy beyond words!
The other AMAZING business that I am super excited to be stocked with is the WONDERFUL, colourful, mega talented and inspiring Katie Abey! Eeek! I met Katie at one of her very first craft fairs, about 4 years ago? I think it was 2014... I'm getting old! Anyway, fresh out of uni and sat behind a stall full of the most fun, relatable prints and cards (bacon and cats spring to mind!), Katie was one of my stall neighbours for the weekend and I just remember having so much fun in our corner trying not to cry about a leaking roof and sweating our asses off in the Summer heat and humidity.
Since that sweaty Summer, I have watched Katie work her socks off and achieve the most incredible things with her unique and brilliant illustrations over the past few years and I'm in awe. Katie, with her amazing team of people, including her fabulous husband Jeff (the Hat Cave) and her Mum (Dawny's Sewing room) has recently opened the most magical, fun-filled shop in Alfreton and THEY ONLY WENT AND BLOODY ASKED IF THEY COULD STOCK MY WORK!
Obvisouly I said YES (I'd like to say I played it cool... I did not!) and last week I send a big ol' box of Sunshine to join the fabulous array of work already on sale in their shop. I fear I may have gushed enough about how excited I am but it's all genuine excitement mixed with pride and support for one of the most amazing creatives I know! I really am thrilled and I just cannot wait to go and visit the shop in person.
Ooft! I think I should try and calm down a bit after all that new work and stockist excitement!
I was hoping to end my blog post this month by telling about all the fun I had on the Brighton In Colourful Company walk over the weekend but sadly I had to miss out. *sob* I had a really upset stomach throughout Saturday night and without going in to too much detail, let's just say I was better off stalking the #incolourfulcompany hashtag from the safety of my bathroom yesterday!
It looked like everyone had the BEST time and I'm keeping all my bits crossed that I can join in on the next one in London in July, it's quite close to when we get back from our big honeymoon adventure though so we shall see. I'm also VERY EXCITED about the Margate trip to Dreamland in August - last year was AMAZING!
As you can see, it's been an excitable month and this is only a snippet of what I've been up to! I've also enjoyed a wonderful Gin-fuelled night out with Claire (Claireabellemakes) thanks to the mighty Cambridge Gin folk, had some great walks in the Sunshine (and rain) with The Beard, enjoyed some lovely street food (as always) and what with all the wedding planning, DIY and crafts going on at home too, it's no wonder April has flown by!
bring on MAY!
Holy sh*tballs! It’s actually May TOMORROW! Roll on mini Glasgow trip, Hen Do funtimes, Handmade Nottingham portrait pop up, birthday fun times and mini moon holidays... oh and GETTING MARRIED! It's a good job I've booked the month off.... hope you all enjoyed my little download of April funsies, I think May is going to bring a slightly longer post! BRACE YOURSELVES!