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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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Teresa Kasner

Vanessa, what a fun post! I now wish you'd gotten a photo of that dog that was so cute you stalked it to get a hug. LOL

It was fun to see this garden in it's beginning stages.

Hugs from Oregon, USA


Spring must be coming if you've started garden visiting again! Were the cakes good? you didn't tell us about the cakes! but the garden looks really interesting - I look forward to pictures of your return visit
I'm glad you had sunshine because we certainly didn't - perhaps you could send some our way next time????


Isn't it great now that things are growing again.I would have loved to have been a fly on the wall watching you stalk the dog!I bet it was very funny.But what about the cake?Hope there was some.


Isn't topiary an amazing thing - to be able to make a plant look like a dog!

Alice and Raymond!!!

I loved those dog trees! they are so cool! And maybe is was the intent way you were stalking this dog that made everyone wonder! he he he Karen is the same with cats. Do you know, I got off the bus last night in a different suburb to where I live, and on the corner of the street there was a big old house and by the iron gate there was the most beautiful big labrador who was almost white, sitting probably waiting for his parents and I stopped to give him a pat and thought that I might look like a dog snatcher, or, how easy it would have been for someone to open the gate and take this lovely dog!!!!!
Glad to hear you had fun at the garden and thank you for sharing your lovely pictures!


What stunning snowdrops Vanessa, they are my absolute favourite, I can never get enough of them. I think a winter garden that is beautifully planned out as this one can certainly have it's own sense of beauty and as you say will unfold into all it's glory as the seasons change.
I too might appear as a cat or dog snatcher as love to give them a little cuddle if I can, some owners get a little possessive though, so I tread carefully xox


Hello Dog Snatcher! LOL. That garden is gorgeous. The snow drops are amazing! Glad you enjoyed your "outing"!:-)


These are the posts I love from you the most :o) Now, a bit more knitting next time would be luverrrrly! You are working too hard! x


Oh gorgeous garden Vanessa! And quite understand about the dog-stalking thing - I fell in love with a dalmation (with brown spots)while on holiday by the beach in January and perhaps his owners thought me a little weird?! I felt it necessary to explain that I was missing my own little dog back home ... in real life I imagine a dalmation needing way more energy and time than I have to give!
ps Knitting season beginning down here, hooray!

Planet Penny

What a lovely garden,your photos are great! I did the 'dog snatcher' thing a couple of years ago, stalking a lady with two miniature dachshunds and having a cuddle with the very sleepy puppy. Six months later we went off to get Higgins so its a dangerous pastime!
Penny xxx


Lovely garden!!! The snowdrops!!! Especially nice to see right now, as my garden has about 4 feet of snow on it.


It's years since I visited that garden, I'd forgotten just how wonderful it is. I've been dreaming over the website and am now going outside to continue sorting my own patch out. Thanks for the inspiration.


hahaha, so funny about the dog-snatching! :)) I can just imagine you running around the garden chasing the dog for a cuddle! :))

I wish Ian and I could go out sometimes, but like you guys we're exhausted by the end of the day. Oh well. Hopefully the good weather will bring more energy!

I've finished Anabelle's cardigan by the way, if you want to have a looksy.


Jo Bleaden

Thank you for sharing such a treasure with us. I love Winter gardens lots of elements have to come into play; shape and texture in particular. Your photos really captured it's essence.
Jo x

Liz W in Missouri, USA

Spring is coming! YEAAAA! Sunshine here today, too. I can't wait for things to start blooming - though that may be a while yet. I love it when you visit gardens and I love the picture of the flower pots in the window of the stone shed!


Hi Vanessa, isn't it lovely when we get a day like that and it really feels as thogh spring is here! Your pictures declare that loud and clear! Today and yesterday we've had dull greyness but I'm holding onto my memory of sunday! :)xx


I love the snowdrops... I love the topiary dogs... I love the potting shed! What a lovely day out :)

Linda Gilbert

Vanessa -- What a treat -- atruly beautiful post Thank you


Hi Vanessa! Thank you for taking us with you to this beautiful garden! What a wonderful 'dog-bush'! I wish you sunny days and spring time! Teje


I love the flowers !


Vanessa, I'm also intrigued by gardens whose designs look great throughout the seasons. You all got to visit a great one. Do go back as spring really gets underway.

Taking a break on a beautiful day...a marvelous idea. Good to listen to Hugo's suggestions! xo

katy alston

Isn't it fantastic spring is practically with us - we're a bit further north than you ... Vanessa -I have a question - could you slip the answer cryptically in one of your blogs pleeeeaaase. How do you manage so much speedy fairisle knitting?
Do you use the carry a yarn on each hand or drop the yarn ?
From a time pressed knitter and illustrator!


Such fabulous garden pictures! I loved this post, and wished I could visit that garden! Our NGS yellow book arrived this week and I'm planning to visit lots this year - what a lot to look forward to...Have a great weekend.
Helen x


Oh for a garden like that ......... x

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Thanks so much for your encouraging words Lorraine. Once again so eloquently stated and inspiring. I would love to take the e-course, I'm always unhappy with my photos so it would be a wonderful journey to learn to accept and appreciate them.
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Beautiful! What is great is how even in winter the gardens look fantastic. I really enjoy the photos. I love those basket work raised beds.

Gwen Gyldenege

Oh my! That *is* a lovely garden. I just love those snowdrops. And, you're quite fun about the way you take your photographs. I love the framing and collage-ing. It looks like it was a lovely day and a lovely visit. it would be interesting to go back in 6 months to see what it looks like in mid summer.

Grette Spadoni

I love the garden setup you've shown here! You say that this garden isn't enormous, but the photos say otherwise. The space is maximized efficiently, without sacrificing any aesthetic aspect. Again, this is a lovely garden!

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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