I am a great believer in life-work balance.  Without some purposeful work to do, I am lost and drift around with no real direction.  However tempting I might find the idea of having empty days to fill with whatever activity my heart desires, I know the reality is not quite as might be imagined.  But after a week of days filled with work-related activity, time spent with friends is especially sweet.




On Monday, I met a couple of friends for lunch.  It’s not that we don’t see one another often – we connect through our book group, through WI and bump into one another fairly often.  But we don’t sit down and chat very often and spending a couple of hours around a table and a plate of good food is a lovely chance to catch up on all the things there isn’t usually time to talk about.  The three of us go back a long way – the two of them even longer – and simple chat about families and domestic details is surprisingly therapeutic.  We smiled when it came to settling up though, recognising the inevitable conclusion to any meal shared by women…


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I enjoyed a day at home on Tuesday, pottering about trying to work out how to fold those little hearts on this website.  The Froebel stars are well established in my mind now and though I need a small refresher each year, I’ve soon got them sorted.  But the hearts were another thing altogether.

Thankfully, the answer was at hand.  I’d arranged to meet my sweet Danish friend Marianne yesterday and took along a bag of paper strips and the challenge. However, in spite of her years of practice making such things, that little folded heart still proved tricky, so we passed the problem on by leaving the challenge with Mogens and buzzed off into Cardiff!




It was the most beautiful afternoon with a clear blue sky and not many people about.  Crafts in the Bay was as intriguing as always – though I looked for a bag by the same maker as Jane bought in the summer, sadly there were none to be seen.  Jane, you have a truly unique work of art there!   Curiously, both Marianne and I had both bought pieces of work by Mandy Nash on previous visits though preparations for the upcoming exhibition were underway and we weren’t able to see the full range of her work.




Being with another “visual” person is such fun: Marianne spotted these two cranes over the other side of the bay and wondered what their argument had been about?!




When we arrived back, not only had Mogens sorted out the process of making the folded heart, he had found a couple of websites for me, too.  One has a clear tutorial for this little heart and the other one includes a video for this folded design as well as for the simpler hearts which open as baskets.  Of course, both are in Danish but hey, we visual learners can cope, can’t we!?

What a hero! 

These two Danish paper folding experts inspired a few more challenges then.  Not only do I need a bit of practice with the small hearts, I’ve also discovered some variations on the other folded heart theme.  Such like minded friends simply fire one another on to further inspiration, don’t we, Jordi!?




So, this morning, before meeting some friends for lunch (yes, the fun week continues!) I followed Mogens excellent explanations and had a go myself.  My first attempt wasn’t too bad – but wasn’t too good either.




My second attempt was better.  The jury is still out on how to finish the ends off though.  Yesterday, we sneered at the video version which cut them off rather short we felt and thinking about it, favoured the further tucking and securing method.  I found this tricky this morning though, and may seek alternatives!  However, in true Elegant Sufficiency style, I hadn’t chosen the most sympathetic type of paper to work with.  The Canson Papier Calque Couleur (bought in France) looks divine and folds beautifully crisply but rips rather more easily than ordinary paper. 

Practice needed.  But I very nearly achieved my usual goal of doing it perfectly in the first five minutes ;-)

Thank you Marianne and Mogens for being enablers of the best kind!


11am, November 11th