Friday, 25 December 2009

Merry Christmas!

It's been a busy month, but the big day finally came! A very merry Christmas to you all :) It's been chilled-out day (much needed) spent with family, along with a good haul of pressies, and plenty of seasonal treats.

My first attempt at a trifle (including home-made custard) for the dessert was pretty successful, I'm pleased to report!

Saturday, 21 November 2009

WildCat Designs is 4!

Yes, the idea which began as a notion to produce my own designs after graduating from a textile degree, WildCat Designs, is four years old, and going strong!

I couldn't be happier about that, and never dreamed it would get this far...

This year has been a busy one and has seen my work featured in an exhibition (UK DIY), blogged about by some lovely people (such as UK Handmade), posted to various corners of the globe, and I even reached a big milestone just last month: 150 sales on etsy!

Woolly world domination, here I come :D

On a more serious note, my little business would not have survived for this long, were it not for the help and support of my friends and family over the years. I also have to say, it's also been quite a thrill to hear from, and get, customers from far-flung corners of the world, places I never thought I would be sending my creations to. There are some really rather well-travelled scarves out there...

Even more remarkable, there is even one scarf, which, extraordinarily, saved someone's life. If that isn't motivation to keep making them, I don't know what is!

It doesn't stop here...the Christmas rush is already well underway, I am knitting more scarves than ever, just to keep up with demand! The last date for placing a custom order in time for Christmas has now passed. However (a little heads-up here), I'll still be offering the custom skinny striped lambswool scarves for a little while to come.

In the meantime, find me here:

Facebook * Twitter * Ravelry

...or start your Christmas shopping here:

Etsy ($) * Bigcartel (£) * DaWanda (€)

Tuesday, 6 October 2009


Well, well. It's been a busy few weeks since my last post.

I had a nice time at the Etsy retreat in August, which was held at Queen Margaret's School, in Escrick near York. It was essentially a weekend of crafting of all kinds! Plus lots of chatting and there was a good amount of cake (mostly made by the lovely Marmalady) consumed. Definitely no bad thing, and it's always nice to meet other folks who 'get' etsy and who are creative too - equally good to be able to put faces to names, as it were.

Queen Margaret's School, Escrick

How pretty is this ^ school?! It was our home for a couple of nights, as we stayed in one of the boarding houses there and crafted our little hearts out in the art block during the day. Uninterrupted. Bliss.

I travelled even further away from home for a few days in London last month. I always get so excited about going there, and as ever, I had a list of things I wanted to do which was much longer than I could possibly have managed!

It ended up being a very arty weekend, as I visited the Tate Modern and also saw my good friend Beatie Fox's MFA Degree show at Wimbledon College of Art. She's a talented artist, do check out her website and sketchbook-style blog.

My visit to the Tate was quite fruitful too, though I was a little disappointed to discover that the Mark Rothko room wasn't around. I did, however see a few thought-provoking works, including Robert Therrien's 'Red Room' - a little room filled, or rather, crammed, entirely with all things red (crayons, red converse, baskets, blankets, painted wooden furniture...) - and also 'No Title (Table and Four Chairs)' which was an interesting exploration of scale. It's a sculptural work which consists of a giant-size table and chair set, which you can walk through and around. I had the feeling of being very small whilst exploring it!

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Pretty Unique

I was recently excited to discover All Things Original, a great online treasure trove for lovely, unique things made by the hands of talented UK designers.

One item in particular which really caught my magpie-like eye was the 'Harriet' Shopper, made by Glasgow's own Showpony.

I love it because that print could not be more perfectly placed! Pretty *and* functional too. What's not to like?

Check out the All Things Original blog - - which has features on their designers and other interesting things! They are currently featuring an interview with 'A Alicia' who makes beautifully sculptural corsages using colourful felt.

Thursday, 13 August 2009

Win a Scarf!

Hello, dear reader. Would you like to win one of my lovely WildCat Designs scarves? Thought so. Well, read on...

My new Aussie stockist, the 'i like you' boutique in Melbourne, is having a little giveaway on their blog! So if you like your scarves skinny, stripy and versatile, this is the one to add to your wardrobe. Perfect for that tricky spot between summer and autumn!

This very scarf can be won, just follow the instructions on this post. If you don't want to leave it to luck, the scarf is also, of course, for sale in all the usual places (etsy, dawanda & folksy)! ;)

Tuesday, 4 August 2009

Books from Boxes

Well, well. It's been a busy few weeks since my last post, and there's even been some lovely sunshine! :)

July was mostly a month of:

thinking about books
general crafting
drinking Sailor Jerry & coke
more knitting
reading Tank Girl comics

...and that's about it really.

Here are some of the books I thought about:

I'd heard of the Goddess Guide before, and this book is by the same author, and is in the same vein. It has such a beautiul cover! The interior is pretty good too :)

Another book I'd heard about (or rather ogled pictures on flickr of) for a while before giving in and actually getting my own copy of is 'Wreck this Journal' by Keri Smith, it's less of a book to read, more of a DIY sketchbook with mad instructions/antics encouraged.

It's been fun so far, and I reckon anyone having a creative block will feel the benefits too. I just wanted to try and be a little less 'precious' about my sketchbooks/artwork for a change, and this is the book to do it with!

One of my favourite books of the last five years was undoubtedly 'The Friday Night Knitting Club' by Kate Jacobs. I was thrilled to discover that she has now written a sequel (only just published this year in paperback!), featuring the familliar characters from the original, five years on.

One final book, just for the joy of it, is 'Put on your Pearls, Girls!' which is fun, witty and full of gorgeous illustrations by Martin Welch.

It even has some wonderful pop-ups! :D What more could you ask for from a book?

Thursday, 16 July 2009

Lovely Things

Oh's been a while! I've been off having far too much fun - my birthday, plus a music festival (T in the Park, if you must know) = not very much blogging at all! I have some things I'd like to share though, so I thought it was about time.

Later this month, WildCat Designs will be taking part in Handmade Haven, a Glasgow Craft Mafia market at Mono. Come and see some fab crafty creations in a relaxed Sunday afternoon setting from 1-6pm on the 26th of July. For more information, see here.

As a birthday treat, I had a mini spree on etsy - mainly because I spotted the work of Kallliopi on the front page. I had to have this...

...mainly because it's just too cute! Not to mention beautifully handmade and unique. Kalliopi is based in Melbourne, Australia and makes gorgeous little brooches from lots of funky little things but my favourites are definitely those based on plectrums for the guitar.

I also discovered that if you sign into etsy on your birthday - the bar at the top says 'Happy Birthday' to you! It certainly made me smile anyway.

Today I stumbled across two rather lovely websites full of nice things. Things which bring me dangerously close to parting with wads of cash!

First up is ModCloth which has a nice mix of retro and vintage clothing, as well as funky things to spruce up your living space. The Stitchable Stationery kit by Sublime Stitching and the Matryoska Russian Doll drinking game definitely caught my eye.

The other website I happened to trip over is Shana Logic. It has some fabulously kitsch jewellery, cute clothing, quirky art prints and even some squeezably soft plush things. Like this sweet Geisha cushion.

Wednesday, 1 July 2009


I was just browsing Vogue online and then WomensWear Daily, doing a little research on the Autumn/Winter 2009 season, when this beautiful Alexander McQueen dress caught my eye and completely stopped me in my tracks.

I don't think words are quite enough to do it justice, but I absolutely love the juxtaposition of the delicate lace carefully draped and layered over the strong yellow colour underneath. The patterning reminds me of the veining on the gossamer wings of a dragonfly. To die for!

Did I mention I have an obsession with lace? I suppose it also helps that I hold the work of Mr. McQueen in such high esteem.

Incidentally, I may be getting a *little* ahead of myself as it's for the 2010 resort collection...

See the article here: Alexander McQueen Resort 2010 - Fashion News -

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Monday, 22 June 2009

Discover DaWanda!

If you haven't already checked out the DaWanda website, which is essentially the European equivalent of etsy (prices are in Euros), then it's about time! In fact, this week would be ideal, as many sellers - including myself - are taking part in its Discovery Week.

During this week, every item on the site showing a little palm tree/desert island logo is 15% off the regular selling price. The promotion, which runs from Monday 22nd June (today) until Sunday 28th June, gives you this special discount when you purchase from a shop you have not previously purchased from before.

...All the more reason to get shopping, and find new & exciting goodies! :)

DaWanda is a great little marketplace for lovers of art, handmade items and homewares plus you can even view the site in your choice of three 'flavours,' namely English, French or German. Bonus!

A little sneak peek at a WildCat Designs creation from my little DaWanda boutique:

The Heart Brooch, in Lilac & Raspberry lambswool, started its life as a piece of knitting (created on my vintage mechanical knitting machine), was then felted and stitched to transform it into a cute wearable heart.

Thursday, 18 June 2009

Wishful Thinking

Lately I've been thinking about some of the things I would like for my birthday (it's fast approaching, as it's in early July!) and somehow, it always comes back to the same, or similar things....I am of course referring to my knitting habit.

Naturally this is not necessarily a bad thing - and here are some wonderful reasons why. May I present to you - drumroll please - my wish list!

To start this off, I always seem to go back to my two favourite yarn shops on etsy for inspiration.

First are the creations of Veronika, aka Snowberrylime (great name). There are some to-die-for handspun yarns in her shop, including this one.


It's a beautiful silk and merino blend and the photograph just makes me want to reach out and squish it. I suppose it's a tactile-impulse thing, I can't help it! :)

A little closer to home, Sheffield-based Shunklies offers a truly delectable idea. Namely 'design your own yarn' and she will spin it for you. What more could a knitter ask for?


See for more goodies.

If you're knitting, well, then I suppose you'll be requiring a set of sticks. I found these today...I think they're fab!


Kitsch and colourful, this pair of acrylic knitting needles is handmade by

I also love these candy cane stripe handpainted pins by


What better way to finish off a gorgeous knit than some of the lovely unique buttons designed and handmade by Laura Walker. I particularly love this one, it's such pretty colours and the lacy surface patterning is to die for, if you love lace as much as I do.


Visit Laura's etsy shop here:

Wednesday, 10 June 2009

Weekend Excitement!

This weekend was exciting on two counts, but essentially for the same reason...

As you can see above, my little corner of this month's Papernstitch exhibition was the featured shop! It also got a nice mention on the Papernstitich blog:

I feel rather thrilled just to be a part of it all, but to have my shop as the featured shop of the day was awesome. All the more so because I just got proper home broadband installed, and I was just having a quick check on my laptop, so it was a nice surprise :)

Thanks to Brittni of Papernstitch.

In other news, I seem to have misplaced my pictures from the most recent fair outing, but I have got something to show you, a pretty new banner:

It's based on my new sign which is stitched on cheerful, colourful and summery bunting!

Sunday, 31 May 2009


Some exciting news for all you scarf fans out there...after a last-mintute 'oh what the hell' submission, I was delighted to be accepted for the next Papernstitch exhibition!

It starts on the first of June, ie tomorrow, runs until July 12th and my little slot will be here when it opens:

Enjoy! :)

Pictures from today's Spread the Word Fair coming soon, plus a fun freebie felt tutorial in the pipeline. Watch this space...

Sunday, 24 May 2009

Mental May

I know it has been pretty quiet from me on the posting front's why. This month, I have been mostly:

- working on a wholesale orders for new and existing stockists
- preparing for craft shows (see below for details of my next one)
- working on a *brand new* online shop:
- developing exciting new product ideas (watch this space!)
- improving my packaging designs
- researching courses in order to hone my creative skills
- updating
- trying to get my records sorted for my tax return *groan*
- pondering new yarn colours...

So there you have it. More often than not this translates as knitting & sewing like mad, and then trying to find time for everything else!

Upcoming Event:

Come and see WildCat Designs & WildKittens goodies in the flesh at the Spread the Word Fair.

Location: Paul Randall Building, 21 Albert Street, Edinburgh (just off Leith Walk)

£1 Entry

Hope to see you there! :)

Sunday, 10 May 2009

Blue Love

Before you ask, the title is *not* a reference to the band! I mean blue the colour. I really do love it. Turquoise, royal, indigo, duckegg, sky... all wonderful in their own right.

I have a gorgeous silk dress in midnight blue which has lighter blue flowers printed on it - and since decided I would wear it to my sister's wedding, I needed to accessorise! Not having a suitable necklace, but possessing crafty skills I made my own.

Using two strands of blue tigertail wire and beautiful Swarovski crystal in varying sizes, I think I managed to coordinate the different hues in my dress nicely.

Here are some other lovely things in blue...

"The Key to my Heart" Cameo necklace by LunarraStar - whom I just realised is also based in Edinburgh, as it happens!

Scottish Sea Glass Print by Artisanne. I love the range of colours :)

"Porcelain Pendant with Glass - Rainwater Craters" - A stunning pendant by the highly talented Lisa of Seaurchin, I'm sure you'll agree!

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Purple Soup

I decided, for one reason or another, that Saturday would be the day to dye. There's a pretty cotton knit I made a while ago, and I wanted to breathe new life into it. Note the very slight smudge of blue on the cream (argh!) in the photograph below, which I did by accident... I hoped that dyeing it a darker shade would redeem the wrap.

So I of course realised I didn't have enough salt in the house, which meant a trip to the shop. I walked and as it was a lovely day and wandered through the beautiful grounds of Lauriston Castle, an Edwardian stately home, as a little detour. Which turned out to be well worth it as the cherry trees in the Japanese garden are in blossom, and when the wind blows it looks like pink-tinged snow falling. Very pretty!

After having weighed the fabric dry, washed it and left it damp, I prepared to dye. First I had to get a bucket, filled with enough cold water to comfortably cover the fabric and be able to agitate.

Next, I pricked the little pot of dye and dissolved that in hot tap water and added it to the dye bath. Then I dissolved the salt and dye fix in hot tap water and mixed it into the dye bath contents.

At this point the damp fabric gets added. I just loved the inky deep purple colour I got in the bucket, it looked like some kind of odd purple soup stuff.

For the next 10 minutes I donned rubber gloves in order to "swish" the fabric around in the dye bath, aka bucket. Sore arms!!

The knitted fabric was in the dye mix for around an hour, with regular swishing intervals. I rinsed out the dye with cold water and then stuck it in the wash (separately!) to get rid of any excess dye remaining.

I'm really happy with the result, as the dye took really well and it's a nice saturated purple now :)

Colour is one of those things that makes life worth living, don't you think?

Thursday, 16 April 2009

Doing the "I do"

Well, it appears wedding season is truly upon us... I recently discovered that my little sister is getting married next month and I have to say I'm ever so slightly excited!

I already know her wedding will not be a traditional one, and am decidedly curious to see how she and her fiance go about their big day.

It has also meant that I've been noticing lots of wedding themed items lately (and has even got me daydreaming a little, I'll be honest!).

Here are a few pieces of inspiration and some helpful links for those who may need it...

I came across Green Union, which has a whole host of resources on planning, budgeting and organising a wedding which won't leave a great big hole in the ozone layer. Eco-friendly couples need look no further: is here.

Rings, you say? Well here's an unusual idea - how about this custom sterling silver ring with hearts imprinted upon it:

See Chris Parry's online shop for more details.

Etsy has a whole series of short articles on doing-it-yourself weddings here: There's a great one here on natural skincare tips for the bride-to-be (and a few for the groom-to-be too!) on the day and leading up to it.

If you're getting married, well, you'll be needing a cake then, won't you! Vogue featured Konditor & Cook in their Secret Address Book a while back and you can really see why if you take a quick look at their website. This London bakery makes some really wonderful cakes and other yummy-looking edibles which, quite frankly, make one's mouth water.

Then there's the small matter of The Dress. I spotted an utterly gorgeous dress on the front page of etsy earlier today, and it's handmade by UK designer Lizzie Jayne. Visit her blog here to see how she went about making it.

As for accessorising, you need not break the bank to finish off the look. There's even a nice range of reasonably-priced but pretty party pieces in New Look at the moment. See for more info.

Saturday, 11 April 2009

A Crafty Journey

This week has been pretty busy, but my busiest day had to be Wednesday. I got up at dawn to catch a train to Greater Manchester. The purpose of my trip was to visit the crafty "UK DIY" exhibition at the Turnpike Gallery in Leigh. Partly out of curiosity and partly because some of my work is actually in said exhibition!

I was not disappointed. Right from the start, when I saw some trees wearing pieces of knitting by ArtYarn outside the gallery (also known as yarn boming or graffiti with knitted/crocheted fabric!), I knew it was going to be good.

Then I went into the building and right at the top of the stairs was some lovely mixed media work by Kay Haskins, influenced by nostalgia, the loss of memory that Alzheimers patients suffer and the life experiences of different generations.

This was a nice lead into the UK DIY exhibition. The first thing that caught my eye was all the gigantic sculptural knit and crochet pieces! I was also amused by the 'mathematic' crochet:

Other sculptural offerings included this amazing piece made entirely out of ordinary drinks straws, rendering them decidedly extraordinary!

I thought these flowers made from recycled fizzy drink cans were great.

The Techno-crafting section of the exhibition included my very own work, so naturally I was more than a little excited to see it in situ!

Next to it are funky pixel-inspired jewellery creations by spugmeistress. She was also responsible for at least one of the fab 'zines on display:

One of the things I was most impressed by was the knitted pillar cosy which even incorporated a 'neck' for the thermostat. How awesome!

Then there was the incredibly detailed knitted landscape, which made me smile.

I thought the interactive elements of the exhibition were really quite good. There was a cosy knitting area:

...where you could even have a go at french knitting:

Then, finally, alongside a pom-pom tree, was the craftivism section, including the Oxfam quilt, which is a knitted petition. Each square represents one of the 1,400 women worldwide who die every day in childbirth or pregnancy because of a lack of healthcare and medicines.

I was especially delighted to see Marjanne Jorgensen's knitted pink M24 Chaffee tank cosy as I submitted my own 15 x 15 cm square as part of this project back in 2006!

All in all, an inspiring and fun exhibition which encouraged people to get involved and have a go too. Always a good thing, in my opinion! :)

For more about UK DIY happenings, please see

P.S. Please click any of the above images in my post to have a better look.