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  • Would you like to award someone special a knitted rosette? See the pattern to knit one here!

  • Little Squares Scarf, (quick pattern).

  • Little Squares Scarf, (step-by-step pattern, with lots of step-by-step photos).

  • How to sew up crochet or knitting with an invisible stitch, step-by-step tutorial

  • Sisterhood Crochet Blanket pattern for square.

  • step-by-step pattern for Sisterhood Crochet Blanket square. Makes crocheting this pattern a doddle for beginners!

  • step-by-step tutorial for some basic crochet stitches

  • Tara's failsafe cup cake sponge recipe

  • knitted slipper pattern

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kitschen pink

I'm quite sure if you sought out a good local florist they could oblige for you!alternatively you could package up a bulb and one of those glass growing jars so she can see the roots develop too!
I LOVE Selvedge magazine! What a super prezzie!

Rachel MacInnes

My baby niece lives far away too - so I started to send her a little package every month. I don't put in 'big' things or presents, just little things I notice day by day that she might like: pictures from her cousins, fimo hearts and elephants, postcards from a gallery, scraps of ribbon and patterned paper. It makes me feel more connected to her in an everyday way, rather than special auntie way (which is also nice). And really, who doesn't like getting a surprise package in the post?


I agree, a delighful gift to be savoured and treasured. do potted hyacinths by post.

But I think the above comment is great : you can buy a dry prepared bulb from a garden centre and send it to Millie with one of those glass bulb vases to grow it in water (or even a narrow-necked jam jar, we used to use coffee jars as kids to grow hyacinths), tied with a pretty ribbon or raffia with a hand painted tag. I would ADORE that as a gift!!!!

Enjoyed your bean-spilling email yesterday vanessa, thanks!!! Will email you a reply when get chance.

greedy nan

Can almost smell them from here!
I bought some for my daughter who's been poorly and she just gawped at them and said but what do I do with it? I told her to enjoy them on her kitchen windowsill - she's not that into plants but I'll wear her down eventually ...


Oh I do love your blog. Just gorgeous xx


You are so clever V. I have often wondered what to do with the bending blooms and end up tying them with twine but they don't look very pretty then. Of course, put them in a vase, brilliant!

I came here to say that this evening I was putting my daughter to bed and she pulled out a book for me to read. It happened to be a Christmas one which made me groan because I want to stop reading Christmas stories now. Then I spotted a familiar name on the cover. It is Dear Father Christmas, Illustrated by you :-) Suddenly I didn't mind reading it to her and I told her that I knew the lady who drew the pictures and that she buys Mummy's fabrics. She went to sleep a happy girl!


Such beautiful pictures , I can smell them :)


i love these and been seeing them in some blogs..I wish i knew about these beautiful plants sooner, i guess its to late for them now, right?man, iam so bummed..

Helen Lambert

what a good idea ...I am going to pop mine in a vase after I have typed this...... they are leaning over very dangerously towards the table...perhaps they are reading my book....why dont you get your niece one of those old fashioned bulb vases so she can see the long wigly roots growing as well as the shoots from the bulb...polls used to love them...your pictures are wonderful...the last ones look like waxed 1950's flowers...I actually used the phrase 'do you mind if I knit?' at an afternoon tea party on friday and I had to chuckle to myself.......happy week sweetie...I am off today waiting to get a Drs appointment so feeling very sorry for myself....Polly is in charge.....

Helen Lambert

I have a terrible habit of not reading other peoples comments and of course eveyone has suggested a bulb vase!!!! and there was me thinking I was original...I have a selvedge subscription but mine hasn't arrived this quarter ...neither has my friends has yours?...its in the shops....


What a lovely gift. They look wonderful I bet they smell jolly good too.


ooh - nice pictures - lovely - can almost smell them!
nice blog too!
hello to you!

julia thompson

I love hyacinths - we used to plant them at primary school - they would sit in a dark cupboard over winter. x Love Julie


They are beautiful! I'm looking forward to winter rolling around here so that flowers won't die instantly in the heat!

Tamara Erbacher

Hi There, I was just reading through your post and noticed that you were having a 'flopping' problem with your I am no expert however my bulbs arrived in the post yesterday with an accompanying article which states:

"To stop your flower flopping, after planting in a pot, place in a pot in a shaded position until the foliage is 5-10cm, then move to a sunny poition, once flowering they can be bought indoors."

Maybe this may help in the future:)

They are sooo beautiful all the same...

Tam xo


Let me congratulate you for the quality of your photos !

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Hello and welcome!

  • Hello, my name is Vanessa Cabban, and I'm so pleased you've dropped by! I'm an artist and illustrator, working from home. I have two Miniature wire-haired Dachshunds, Ellie and Douglas. I love being part of the blogosphere, reading your comments, and feeling like I'm part of a community. I hope you enjoy reading about my small world.

Books I have illustrated!

  • The Best Gift of All

  • Book and dvd,(narrated by Kevin Whateley), of Bringing Down the Moon

  • There's a House Inside My Mummy

  • The Magic Donkey Ride

  • Down in the Woods at Sleepytime

  • Dear Tooth Fairy

  • Dear Mermaid

  • No Place Like Home

  • Diamond in the Snow

  • Bringing Down the Moon