Postcard from... the Coast

Today's postcard is from one of my favourite podcasters, bloggers and makers. I'm sure many of you have been following Kate's adventure as she relocated from the city to a little cottage on the coast - read on to find out how her new life is influencing her making.

I’ve been saying for a while that I didn’t find my home but it found me. I hadn’t meant to pack up my entire life and move to a remote village on the coast but here I am, knee deep in weeds that should be a vegetable patch and loving it. 

It’s this sense of home that’s really helped me affirm what my creativity means to me. Where once I knitted on long commutes around a busy city, now I reach for a project with a sense of need and function. My family need warm woollens when most mornings greet us with a thick sea fog. We don’t have the convenience of a shop in the village so I’ve learned to have a well-stocked pantry and craft stash and make most things from scratch wherever possible. Getting to know a small community can be tricky when you represent the sniffy city dwellers locals associate with snobby tourists so I’ve paved the way with homemade jams swapped for duck eggs and the promise of returning with curd made from them next time. 

It’s a different life and one I was so ready for after years of city living had left me feeling entirely isolated and lacking in energy. I don’t know if I’d believed that functional could be creatively inspiring a few years ago and yet that mist….

The changing weather and our life here has defined what I make. Yes, it’s functional but it’s not lacking in inspiration or joy. My colour palette has always lingered around a grey palette with blue and green as occasional visitors. Now though? Now I see colour and it changes with each month’s new growth and loss. 

We’ve watched, fascinated at cultivation of the crops in the surrounding fields. Now I find myself drawn to those rich neutrals I’ve come to associate with the sound of the Combine whirring at the back of the cottage and the long grasses as the meadows reach their full feathery glory. 


Yarn via Purl Alpaca

The thatch, the stone, the mist, all help me celebrate the many, many nuances of grey and I’m absolutely thrilled by it. 

Pattern is Looking Ahead by Veera Valimaki. Yarn is Arcadia by The Fibre Co. 

With limited shops and choice locally, I’ve turned my attention to garment making. I knit warm accessories to be tugged down over ears and thick sweaters to protect us on those long walks we have come to love so much. I’m also stockpiling material and pondering an army of simple skirts and dresses to keep my daughter in clothes she approves of while she grows like a weed. 

Sometimes we can think that to be creative is an enormous gesture or mythical feat. For me though, it came when I finally discovered a sense of home at long last. It was only once I finally felt like I had a table to tuck my feet under and a sofa to curl into that I was willing to really set to with making whatever I could from food to cushions to mending and garment making. Now home is in my stitching too. It means a lot having wandered so much to find it. 


Kate is currently documenting her making life and others with her podcast A Playful Day. Working a season at a time, Kate unpicks themes currently inspiring her. The previous season,’ Adventure’, has now finished and her next season exploring ‘Family & Kin’ are due for release in early Autumn. You can find out more at http://www.aplayfulday.com/podcast/ or keep up to date with the latest news on Instagram, Twitter or Snapchat as A Playful Day. She talks about cows and village life. A lot. 

Makers' Postcards will run throughout August. Find other posts in the series here and join in with your own images and stories on Instagram using the hashtag #makerspostcards

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