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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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Comments

Rattling On

I agree about craving a bit of colour! We're still snowed in, the roads are just starting to be opened...at last. My 2 dogs also love the snow and don't seem to mind how cold it gets. I see Douglas is being snapped from every angle in the last picture. Model-dog.

jennyff

Lovely to have you back after your white out and your pretty colours are so welcome at the moment. At least the dogs are enjoying the snow though Douglas makes me feel shivery. We have a bit of a thaw today, almost 4 weeks since the first snow came. Hurray.

annri

Happy New Year, Vanessa! It is good to hear from you again. I always enjoy a big hit of bright colors in the mid-winter here in the mid-west of the u.s.; definitely suffering the whiteness... cheers!

gill

welcome back vanessa! oh how we've missed you!! love the pictures of douglas but boy oh boy are we fed up with the snow - here in glos we've still got lots and today is the first day i've managed to get down our little lane
gill xx

wonderwoman

lovely to have you back, Douglas is a star!

xxx

Sarah Jane

I know what you mean about suffering from all the white. I wish I lived somewhere where winter white was a rare occurence instead of a yearly certainty. I'm glad to see that the dogs really enjoyed it.

Nina - Tabiboo

'Oh bless' a sledging dog and covered in all those little snowballs.

Hope you get some Spring'ish' colour injection soon,

Nina x

Sue

Glad to have you back,I agree with you there has been far too much white.Roll on spring.


Sue xx

Rachel

Hi Vanessa, Douglas looks so cute with his snowy beard!
Rachel x

Kate Bruning

Oh I have missed you so much Vanessa but completely understand the whole lethargy thing. All we have done since Christmas is take large naps every day - and reading too, lots and lots of books which has allowed me to escape cheaply for a couple of weeks. I wish you so much colour my friend and just think, it will only be a couple of weeks and then bulbs will be flowering and blossom blossoming. Why don't you take some food dye outside just for me and brighten it up a bit - just don't use the yellow one. Lots and lots and lots of love, Kate xxooxxooxx.

Laura

The snow pictures are lovely and are a nice contrast to the beautiful colors in your painting. We have cold, but no snow, so I've been indoors for a week. Finally ventured out today when the thermometer hit a balmy 32F.

I bought two books you illustrated over the holidays - they're so cute!

Can't wait to see that scarf... .

Siobhan

Whereas I didn't shout "where are you Vanessa" while you've been away I surely have missed you heaps, so it is a real pleasure to see you back posting! And what a gorgeous post, I really love your paintings, all of them but I do have a soft spot for the oriental teacups so quite frankly I am jealous that Ann and not me is the recipient of this lovely lovely thing. One day, when I am not counting pennies in pots to pay the bills I will have my very own (I would make that a promise, but I don't always manage to keep promises, I am bad like that) and I can't wait! The frame actually goes incredibly well with it - I love the colour of the wood. A special, special gift for someone who no doubt totally deserves it for being such a special friend to the doggies. I also love the painting you open with - I love all those pinks and reds. I did love your snowy Douglas pictures, bless him! but like you I'm happy we have had a bit of a thaw. Enough is enough. But I do enjoy Christmas so won't complain too much. I hope blogging is like a muscle and that you rebuild up all your stamina and we get lots of wonderful posts throughout 2010, just like we did in 2009. Hope your 2010 is a very happy, fulfilling and jolly one!

skirmishofwit

How nice to see a new blog from you! I love your pictures so much. I was so excited to get two of your paintings for Christmas - they even nicer in real life! I blogged about them here: http://skirmishofwit.typepad.com/skirmish_of_wit/2010/01/routine-returns.html

Happy New Year!

driftwood

lovely to have you back Vanessa, can always count on you for colour, even if it is just with your chat xxxx

Gina

I know what you mean about too much white but your photos of Douglas are super. I love the paintings.

Aubrey Cotton-Stapleton

You are back! Take care and no pressure on yourself! I lovvve to see your paintings and the dog photos! Chief Elf here has to see those, he is a dog lover too. Love Aubrey

Erica K

Happy New Year! I was worried about you...but hoped you were just getting over the holiday. Most years it takes me a while...the post holiday letdown and all that. I love the snowballs on Douglas...too funny! :)

That Hugo is such a wonderful gift giver! I'd love to have a macro lens. Have fun with it! :)

Pipany

Lovely to see you back Vanessa. your pics have plenty of colour even in the white. Look at that golden glow you have captured. Ready for Spring myslef now, though love all the knitting by the fire such weather produces. Look forward to seeing your scarf x

mlle paradis

OMG! I never realized. It is the WHITE! What is that? You're right - it's awful!!!! How can that be that white everywhere inside can look so nice and restful but having to look out the window and see nothing but white everyday!? I am so with you Vanessa. And poor Douglas! Reminded me of all my snow disgruntledness as a child, sledging with my brothers and sisters. I tried, but I never really enjoyed it. Glad to see that the little ones had fun - but those clumps of snow! (YUCK!) Love your little painting. Hope you're restocking the shop cause I'll be back!

SNOOPYDOG

Hello there! Welcome back. Glad you had a pleasant Christmas. I just love your photos of the doggies having fun in the snow. So good to see! Such a cute one of Douglas i=on the sledge. Can't wait to see your Fairisle later in the week! I'm desperately trying to complete all unfinished 'things on needles' before starting any new ones. It's very difficult to not get going on a bag of scrumptious blanket yarn and another bag od gorgeously soft baby alpaca, but I'm managing. Keep warm! Ros

Cat

Happy New Year, Vanessa. Douglas is, as always, too adorable.

Charlene

Welcome back Vanessa - and Happy New year...

I'm feeling a bit ho hum today - endless days of sunshine,heat and humidity... so your pictures of snow made me smile. I have such fond magical memories of the day (yes the one and only day) that it snowed where I was living a few years ago.

Mousy Brown

We have a whippet (a velvet dog with no insulation at all!) who loves to sledge and play in the snow. I worry constantly that she is going to freeze but she just ignores me and carries on playing - so Douglas covered in snow looks very understandable to me! :)

sumea

Your Gorgeous artwork does add a Lovely splash of colour to January, but I am afraid Douglas steals has stolen show by being so downright Adorable :o) He's such a Cute doggie xoxox Give him a Hug from me xoxox

I am so Happy to see You back, I was getting worried there. Even though I have been away myself for seven months!

Wishing You a very Happy, Healthy, Fun, Creative and above all Colourful New Year xxx

Sumea

Marie Allen

I really have missed your blogging too. It may sound ironic, but the truth is that your posts, white or not, eases my own "lethargy" so thank you for sharing your life! This time of year can be dreary, since the Holidays are over and spring is not quite on the horizon yet. The lack of daylight can do strange things to some of us...
Welcome back!

sue

Happy New Year! Here is hoping there is more color in your life too. Douglas looks so cute as a snow doggie, very sweet natured he sounds too. I adore the last photo of him on the sled.

Nicola

Thanks for brightening a winter day, Vanessa. Things just aren't the same without your posts.

Jen

So glad you're back. I was starting to worry since I check your blog every morning with my tea!

Barbara

Dear Vanessa
Lovely to see you back and I wish you both (and doggies too of course) much happiness in the New Year.
Such extremes of weather - here it is blisteringly hot (43 degrees) and windy. My nephew arrived back just last week from his Gap year in the UK - his plane took off just before the huge snowstorm - he was anxious to get back for cricket practice!
How adorable is Douglas? Are they really little snowballs on his chest and tummy, caught up in his little coat? I could just reach into my screen and cuddle him, except his Majesty (my Snowy Westie) wd probably be jealous!
Have bought some lovely new brightly colored wool - it's all your fault!!
Take care and keep warm.

frances

Happy New Year, and welcome back to you, Vanessa!

Wish that we had some of that beautiful white snow over here ... and the time to enjoy it, instead of immediately thinking about how to push it on, shovel it away, turn it into slush. That is not a pretty landscape.

Your tea cup painting is grand. I do them also, and it's fun to see how someone else takes on that wonderful subject matter.

Hey ... I have a bit of yarn that I want to use to try your slipper pattern. I am mixing some lighter yarns together to go for that chunky gauge. The experiment starts tomorrow. I plan to felt up the completed slippers, and then attach unfelted pom poms. Thanks for the inspiration.

xo

Elena, Moscow

It's wonderful to have you back!
Douglas is a very cute snowball. My dog likes snow, but doesn't roll in it. Maybe he is still too small to understand the joy of it? ;-)

Isabelle

So nice to have you back Vanessa :o)
I like your new "white sickness" term and understand the feeling completely! Can't wait for the first signs of Spring!!
Have a nice day xx
Isabelle

Petit Filoux

Happy new year! So glad to have you back!! I'm fed up of the snow too, we've had our fun, so I want normal weather to come back!! Everything is still so white and slushy in places! Dog looks very cute

Annegret

Happy new year 2010! Enough snow now. Spring please come! The picture you made is fantastic. We have the same "chinese" tea cups. Welcome back!

Annegret

Cath W

Welcome back Vanessa, and a very 'happy new year' to you, Hugo and the furry ones!

RachelM

Happy New Year! Glad you are well and recovering from the snow.

Anna-Karin, Sweden

Good to "see you" again, and a happy new year to you!!
Love Anna-Karin xxx

Tessa

Happy New Year Vanessa, great to see you back. Love the picture of Douglas on the sledge!

Julie

ah, looks like Douglas was loving the snow, considerably more than you it seems. I loved the white out for the first couple of days, but then, really really wanted and needed a colour fix, as the white/greys were just too bland for words. Raining here now, but they are forecasting that it will turn to heavy snow later, and I can't say I'm so thrilled about it this time! Hope you are staying warm and finding some good colour in your corner of the world. We are still loving Diamond and reading it every night (as the children are still loving every last second of the snow and or anything snow related).

sarah raad

hey! happy new year :-) The snow was GREAT, for a while but, bye bye!! Getting boring now! Love the pix of those delightful doggies, can we have a post soon where they talk to one another? I do so love them! I have taken up my blog again too, new year, new beginnings and all that. jakey Bakey says 'hi'. S xxx

Alice Saltiel-Marshall

Been wondering where you were? Thought perhaps you'd slipped off on a trip without checking out ... but that's not like you!
I well understand the dull drums of dreary weather. We have solid winters here and the only thing that gives us hope is that the sun shines at least half of the time. And then we have the magical, clear, brilliant, BLUE and WHITE days. Still, I shall be glad to escape our long winter once again this year ... Palm Spring for the month of March!
Welcome back Vanessa!

Janice

You're right - the monochromicity of it all is just interminable! My Vogue arrived this week and that had a white feature in it. Aarghghghghg! I am currently knitting, however, a pair of orange/red/yellow socks (meant to be a Christmas presents) and it's almost like a therapy session, watching the vibrant colours change through each row!

paintdropskeepfalling.wordpress.com

Nice to have you back again. Douglas is so cute!

Karoline

I'm with you on needing a splash of colour when I finally made it to the shops on Saturday I had to buy a bunch of red tulips for that very reason.

Love the photo's of Douglas, such enthusiasm!

I thought you might like to know that I bought my little girl 'When Wishing comes true' for Christmas and it became her favourite book before the day was out :)

Val

Oh my goodness. What a wonderful time fun time for Douglas. He is such a cuties.

Katie

Hi Vanessa, Happy New Year! I found your blog via Attic24 and I was wondering if you have any plans for putting more paintings for sale in your Etsy shop? I was looking through the sold items and they are beautiful.
Cheers, Katie

The Curious Cat

Happy New Year Vanessa! Good to have you back! Tis been a while! Hope you had a lovely seasonal holiday? Douglas is too cute - I can't believe all that snow on him and the one of him on the sled is adorable!

Sorry to hear you have been feeling under the weather...let's hope the snow goes soon, it is beginning to annoy. It is like someone up there said 'hmm...they haven't had much snow in recent years...better rectify that!' Love your paintings - very impressive -especially the one for your friend! xxx

Alison

Hello Vanessa

This is the first time that I have commented but have been reading your blog for while and have just got the updated posts.

Thanks so much for such a wonderful blog - I love all of it - your pictures, paintings, knitting and crochet and the lovely pics of your house and your gorgeous dogs.

Your garden is so beautiful - I was looking at the pics of when you had your barbeque yesterday and longing for the snow to be over and summer to begin again.

My mother lives in Spain and I was lucky enough to be there over the New Year which was a wonderful respite from all the cold and white. I have just posted some pics of that over on my blog at http://stitchesoftime.wordpress.com if you have time to visit.

Thanks once again for sharing your talents.
Alison

brooke

Suffering...but looks fun! (I love your coat.)

josiekitten

Happy New Year! I love your snowy doggy photos! Brilliant!

Janice Perkin

lovely to see you back Vanessa - glad it was only lethargy not something worse!!! - enjoyed all the pictures!

OverflowingMum

great photos! Have only recently discovered your blog andam loving it! We have some f the books you've illustrated and they are amongst our favourites!
Our doggy loves the snow too!
Desperately awaiting the spring here too though!!

Heather

Hurrah, Vanessa's back!

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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