Monday 22 December 2014

The Twelve Makers of Christmas: Eleanor of Walnut Tree Home

We are very nearly at the end of The Twelve Makers of Christmas, where we have had a lovely line up of crafts, gifts and products. But we couldn't not hear from Eleanor, who very coincidently, lived very close by me back in Cambs! She's popped to say to you Crafty B's with this lovely cushion and for a bit of Christmassy nattering.  

Lets get settled for the interview. What is your favourite Chritmas tipple?
Ooo a nice easy one to start – it’s a bit retro but I adore snowballs, a good glug of Advocat topped up with lemonade, a dash of lime and of course a cocktail cherry on the side!

Would you prefer Mince pie or Christmas pud?
This is tricky as I love them both, but Christmas dinner without Christmas pudding just wouldn’t be right (but it has to be served with custard and brandy butter!)

Tell us a bit about yourself.
My name’s Eleanor, by day I work full time as a Communications Manager but in my spare time I am addicted to all things homely. I’ve always made my own soft furnishings – including curtains and roman blinds for my home and I love to make things for my friends and family, which is where this all began. My friends pestered me for a long while to set up and blog / website and to start sharing and selling some of the things I make as a hobby, so I eventually gave in earlier this year and set up Walnut Tree Home, the fabulous Rubber Cheese ( created my logo. I sell cushions, bunting, pin cushions and tea towels via Etsy and Folksy as well as direct. I also blog about doing up our home and anything else that inspires me – which includes food! The products I make are made with a mix of vintage and new fabrics and trims. I try to make them all unique and individual so that customers can buy one-off pieces to enjoy in their own homes.

What is the item you are sharing with us?
This is a 40cm square enveloped backed cushion made with a mix of new linen and vintage fabric. All of my cushions come with feather filled pads.

What was your inspiration for the item?
I adore this fabric and as it’s quite a busy pattern it needed a fairly simple design, which is why I complimented it with a simple grey ribbon and a few buttons.

It's lovely. How long have you been sewing and how did you learn?
My mum taught me to sew at a very young age and I grew up using her sewing machine. When I bought my latest house with my now husband I decided to step things up a gear and learn how to properly make roman blinds and curtains so that I could fill our home with them. A close family friend taught me and she regularly runs courses near Diss

Do you have a designated space or room crafting? 
I’m really lucky in that I have my own room. When we bought our house the previous owner had built an outdoor office space – which is carpeted and has electric, so I quickly grabbed that as my sewing room! It makes sewing so much easier to do if you don’t have to pack it away every time, I just pop in there whenever I’m feeling creative.

Where can the Crafty B’s find you online?
Twitter - @walnuttreehome 
Pinterest -

What big plans do you have for 2015?
I plan to just carry on doing what I love! I’ll be making a new year’s resolution to blog more regularly and share more creations.

What will you be doing this Christmas?
I’m cooking for my immediate family this year as my mum who would usually do it is recovering from a knee replacement, time permitting I’m planning on making some festive linen table mats and my own crackers

Do you have any personal traditions over the holidays? 
Christmas breakfast is a big tradition in our family – growing up my mum would always cook a big ham which we’d have with a lovely crusty loaf and chutneys and I’ve always carried on the tradition. Oh and at 31 years of age I still hang up a stocking ; )

What is the best thing about Christmas?
It’s my favourite time of year. I’ve a huge extended family and we all try to see each other over the festive period, spending time with family is the best thing about Christmas – it’s what it’s all about.

Complete the following sentences:

I will start my Christmas shopping… 
… I started a few weeks ago thankfully!

My best ever Christmas gift was…
… This is so hard… I would probably say either a beautiful jewellery box my parents bought me years ago – which will last forever, or more recently my husband spoilt me rotten with a Mulberry handbag, it’s my pride and joy.

My worst (but gratefully recieved ;-) ) Christmas gift was… 
… Hmm, I’ve generally been very lucky over the last 31 years – I think I’m very easy to buy for!

Our Christmas dinner normally consists of…
… A traditional Christmas dinner, Turkey and all the trimmings followed by pudding and then cheese, washed down with red wine.

Christmas wouldnt be christmas without…
… family

The best Christmas song is…
... It’s Christmas by Slade.

My favourite Christmas decoration is…
… I have a bauble which was bought for me for my very first Christmas which is very sentimental but other than that I have so many pretty ones that it would be difficult to choose!

My most memorable Christmas was…
… A few years ago we had a very fun Christmas with my Nan, who had one too many sherry’s and we all ended up dancing around the living room wearing some of our new things – which included snorkels and flippers.

It's lovely to have such wonderful Christmas memories. Thanks for sharing with us Eleanor. Have a very merry Christmas. 

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