We've battened down the hatches this week after a so called 'weather bomb' hit the west coast of Scotland, causing high winds and unusually high waves. It was a good test of our house (and nerves). Now the snow is settled on the mountains on Torridon and on Skye and when the rainclouds part it looks beautiful.
I've always loved beach-combing and now the sea is on my doorstep I have to be more discerning or the house will soon fill with shiny briny things. What beautiful objects though.... each beach seems to have its own distinct varieties of shell and there is even one with thousands of coral fragments washed up along the shore. (I hope this is through natural erosion and tidal storms rather than deep-sea trawler dredging).
Two days after my previous post (a rather shameful eight months ago), my boyfriend and I had one of those eureka moments. He was recovering from a rather nasty and unexpected hip fracture after a bicycle accident on black ice and I no doubt had a little cabin-fever from a dreary wet winter in the city punctuated by the constant demands of a large Victorian house that needed money spending on it yesterday.
We spent the day in Monmouthshire meeting up with family and as the sun shone down on the gorgeous wooded valleys and rivers we both looked at each other and declared that it was time to move. At that stage we didn't have a precise location in mind but it was a powerful and determined decision.
The next day we phoned the Estate agents and by June the house was scrubbed up and ready for its potential new owner. It sold within a week.
In truth we knew where we would end up. We met in Scotland, his family are still there and it was time to return.
There were fact-finding missions to be had, houses to be viewed (or built) and then by a series of happy chances we ended up looking round our perfect house by the sea on a sunny August afternoon. The Scottish weather gods were being mischievous with us for they knew we would be seduced by the shimmering blue sea and towering golden mountains. I'd already seen the house online but was in no way prepared for the reality of the views or quality of the build.
On a handshake it seemed the house was ours and after a smooth legal transfer we moved in two weeks ago. Even the 650 mile drive with Paddy pug was OK and the removals van arrived two days later to sunny skies and a flat calm sea. In November! Whatever next.
The weather has continued to to be far too kind to us. It is breaking us in gently with fiery sunrises and dramatic sunsets, aqua blue seas and golden beaches with seals and otter and the promise of dolphin pods around the next bay. We know it is preparing us for the Winter reality of Atlantic storms and sideways rain, of short days and long nights. We are new and green, we will soak it all up.
My new studio is up and running, I feel productive and inspired and cannot wait to create new work.
Here's Farrah Singer carrying my blue butterfly bag on her way to the Oscars earlier this month. Doesn't she look fabulous in that chartreuse yellow dress. Her husband, Eric Warren Singer, was nominated for best screenplay for 'American Hustle'.
This photo came to me via Jessica at Ivy & Aster in New York, who recently did a Spring/Summer photo shoot in Manchester with the brilliant photographer Rosie Hardy.
Stunning results, and I'm so delighted to be included, here is my Forest Lights clutch.