Monday, 30 May 2016

Garden Mosaic Picture - With Wood And Mosaic Tiles

* Craft Alert*

I recently received a box of goodies from the lovely people at Baker Ross, and if you've seen my previous make you'll know that I was intrigued by the sisal, and enjoyed making with it. I have some colourful looking pens to try out soon as well. The rest of the box was a little disappointing, in that the wood pieces, small wooden logs (my best name for them) and a big box of mosaic tiles, didn't come together in an obvious way at first, and none of the packs had any suggestions to get you going with how they could be best attached to things or manipulated.

My art in the garden copyright These City Days 2016

It was mum who came up with the idea of sticking some of the bigger bits of wood (mulberry slices) together and then decorating the shape, and after a bit of experimenting I came up with a rough circle shape. I decided then to make a little piece of artwork for the garden, and painted the wood up with an outdoor paint.

There are a lot of mosaic tiles in the box, in all kinds of shapes and colours, with some quite pretty patterns/grains on some of them. I was confident I could make something colourful, but not having any mosaic cement/grout - I opted for a scene style picture, using a glue gun, rather than an all over pattern.

Copyright - These City Days 2016
It was a bit hit and miss with the glue gun, a couple of pieces fell off when I stood the finished result in the garden, but I'm pleased with the end result - it looks like a proper scene which is what I wanted, and hopefully when we do our garden I will find a place to put it outside so I can see how it lasts.

Thanks to Baker Ross for the challenge - I was gifted these products to craft with as a member of their adult blogger network, but all opinions and designs are my own. To find out more about the full range of art and craft items they have available, please visit Baker Ross online.

Copyright - These City Days 2016
Mulberry Slices - 500g for £5.99
Glass Mosaic Tiles - 2kg for £9.99
* Prices correct at time of writing.

Saturday, 28 May 2016

3 Places To Hop Off The Train In Essex


I'm Essex born and bred, but sometimes it's harder than you'd think to recall all the sights and attractions on my doorstep, I'm sure there's a few gems I don't yet know about as well. But if you're coming from out of town and want something to do in the county for an afternoon, or even a day trip, here's a few quick ideas, all accessible when you hop off the train.
Chelmsford

Landscaped Gardens @ Hylands House

Where? 40-45 minutes on the Liverpool Street line.

What? A small city with a lot of culture

Why? Chelmsford is growing into a vibrant shopping destination, with plenty of options for families. Head to the museum in Moulsham Street and introduce your children to the legendary bear, and busy bee hive. On a nice day Central Park is the place to picnic.

Highlight? Hylands Park – a short taxi ride from the station, with plenty of space for young ones to run around, hidden gardens to explore, and the visitor centre which has a cafĂ©, art studios and gift shop. There’s also a great adventure castle play area, and regular events and festivals for adults and children alike.

Southend

Where? 45 minutes to 1 hour journey on either the Fenchurch Street to Southend Central line or the Liverpool Street to Southend Victoria line.

What? Family friendly coastal down with lots to see and do for all ages.

Why? 3 words, Rossi’s ice cream, and lots of it. The famous arches cafes along the seafront are also a must see. founded in 1932 and serving up traditional seaside fare ever since. Southend also has a long history of providing amusements and your children will happily lose themselves in the arcades, Adventure Island theme park, or sea life centre.

Highlight? Southend Pier – the longest pleasure pier in the world, will you walk it or ride the train? Fishing is available along the pier, and the Royal Pavilion hosts events including puppet shows and live music, along with seasonal fun.

Billericay

Where? A small town not too far from Chelmsford, and just over 30 minutes by train via Stratford/Shenfield.

What? An ideal half-day visit if you want to escape the capital and enjoy the outdoors.

Why? Lake Meadows is an easy walk away from the station, and home to the largest firework display in Essex. Activities include crazy golf, pitch and putt, a skate park, and tennis.

Highlight? Take the bus from the station to Barleylands and turn a half day into a day trip with a visit to the farm park and craft village.

 

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