contact me at

my etsy shop


  • 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

blogs I read

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oof Vanessa, every time I see a photo of your vase of yarn I want to just dive in! In fact, the very first time I read your blog a couple of years ago was when you posted about your vase full of yarn, and surrounding yourself with all the colours. Just scrumptious!
I thought Cuddy was wearing a little red bandana/handkerchief in the photos but it's just his collar. I think he'd look pretty dapper in a neckerchief though, don't you?
xxxxxxx Heather


Cuddy's an active little chap isn't he!!
After looking at the first photo I thought he did a bit of knitting too, as well as all his other activities. :)
Vivienne x


I'm going to have to remember your new blogging timetable. I know what you mean by panic mode. Sometimes when I have lots to do, nothing at all gets done. I love the photos of Cuddy, he is such a bundle of energy. He's a very handsome fellow, as is Douglas, not forgetting Ellie, of course.

Liz W in Missouri, USA

Mr. Cuddy seems to be the happiest little guy - no wonder Douglas wants to follow along as fast as his little legs will let him go. I wonder what he would have to say to such a quietly brooding hen. I think he would beg her to come out "just for a minute"! Pleasepleasepleaseplease! LOL

I think you are wise to look at your time and make the changes you need to make for your own health and well being. So many times we want to push ourselves to the point that there is no joy left - and that would certainly be the wrong thing to do. As much as I love your blog and all the wonderful creatures that surround you - I would hate to see you have to disappear.

By the way - yesterday was very busy here in my little corner - but I want to tell you how much I like your sweater. It looks so comfy and comforting. As always, Hugo's photos are wonderful and whimsical.
Take care of yourself now - and we'll see you in a few days!


Lovely photos of Cuddy. Terriers are really strong dogs and as you say were used on farms to kill rats - my grandad had a terrier, Rex and my grandad used to literally carry buckets full of dead rats from the hayloft after Rex had been at them!
Like the dog's vitality - some stunning photos!

D Byrne

I just love the hen, her feathers look gloriously soft! I saw an article on the Guardian and thought how cute your little doggies would look in knitted form - take a look at the link

D Byrne

I just realised there is one of a jack russell too! But not as sweet as the dear cuddy


any blog post including dogs is welcome here..

I can see his exuberance!

Alice and Raymond!!!

Cuddy makes me laugh but man does he look energetic!!! It must be a bit like having a child to look after and keep busy!

I agree with you, lovely, blogging DOES take up a lot of time and energy, especially as you make such a beautiful blog that takes a lot of time to prepare, all those photos! then the mosaicing and the uploading and the writing, good on you for making changes in your life to suit you!

Sending you lots of love, from Alice and RaymondXXXXX

Susan young

Take good care of yourself Vanessa ...we look forward to many more blogs to your pics of Cuddy and yes he seems to have energy to burn...I have just purchased a lovely Sausage dog painting of our Trade me...looking at your darling two has made me love the breed..

Teresa Kasner

Great post of doggies and chickens and yarn and all. Just blog when you feel like it.. we'll be here when you say hello.

((hugs)), Teresa :-)


your blog fills me with warmth, love the colours and your creativity- so inspiring!!
your photos bring with them such love and charm...i look forward to following your next posts, x kazzy x thanks for leaving a lovely comment on my blog too x

Magic Cochin

Oh yes... I wondered where my new visitors were coming from ;-) Thank you for the link Vanessa xx

Cuddy is wonderful - well he is in the photos! I wonder if I'd cope with his insatiable energy and curiosity? I can see he's fun to play with on the beach - but when you need to quietly sit and get on with your work I can see than your doggies are more fit for purpose!

Thanks again, and remember we don't HAVE to blog if we have other more pressing things to do... we make our own rules. I'm off to do reference sketches for a new print today so I won't be blogging or tweeting either :-)



Brilliant photos of Cuddy! You've so captured the essence of a Jack Russell - busy, bossy and nosey. Love your blog which I've recently found via ...can't remember!


I blog every my mind!! I find it much harder to actually put finger to keyboard though!! I think it's the time it takes to put photos on that puts me off sometimes, but then I need my photos as I rarely feel I have much of interest to say!! LOL!! You, however, do have interesting things and I look forward to each and every post!! Cx


Hi Vanessa,
Thank you so much for sharing that hen video. It was the sweetest thing to watch, such nurturing! Loved your doggy action pictures. One high energy JRT! Always enjoy your posts but no need to put pressure on yourself. Love to read your post just whenever you want to blog. Have a fun weekend, xoRobin❤


I absolutely love Cuddy! He is a real dogs dog isn't he? An all action super hero. I think though he would be a bit tiring to have full time though, so hurray for less 'full on' dogs. Douglas and Ellie manage to have lots of fun and adventures at a less manic pace, Douglas is quite dog enough and Ellie of course wouldn't want to be drawn in to all this macho stuff. Watching him trying to tear into the tyre makes him seem game for anything. I remember seeing pictures of Cuddy when he was just a little baby; he was so sweet.

I think you should blog when you want to rather than because you feel you have to. I would hate for you to do too much and make yourself ill and run down. I will always be a happy reader of your blog and feel fortunate that you choose to post at all - there are so many demands on time, it's a wonder you achieve anything like the amount you do. Please do whatever makes you comfortable and happy and what you enjoy.

Loved seeing the little hen. She is so cute and makes you want to scoop her up to give her a cuddle (have never held a hen but I have little chicks - they feel all scratchy and tickly in your hand). She seems very solicitous of those eggs . Animals often make great mums don't they? We could learn from them sometimes I think!

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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