A Sunny Day In Cambridge

I gave myself the day off today after a bad week of migraines (usually my weekends are spent working on my Etsy store). Last year I learnt to pace and really listen to my body, so I knew that a relaxed day was in order. Especially as I have been anxious and incredibly clumsy of late.

The sun came out  in Cambridge and I set off for brunch, tea and coffee dates planned with friends. I live by the river and always take time to appreciate the scenery and the market square in the city centre is a favourite spot of mine.







The day ended with my friend Jo spotting this rainbow. Perfect.

Back to work tomorrow! What are you up to this weekend?

One last thing – February on the blog is going to be Share The Love month! This means a huge giveaway and a guest DIY post every Friday. I’m super excited to welcome some amazing bloggers to this space, it’s going to be awesome.



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Instalife: February

Where did February go? I’m already collating Instagram pictures and it seems like January only just began! I had a quiet month of taking more time for myself and my health did improve slightly, yay!

I haven’t had a big migraine since the beginning of February, so that’s something, but I have felt very fatigued which has been hard. In March I’ll go to London to see the specialist  again so I’m feeling a bit more positive.

Anyway, you are probably wondering what I’ve been up to, so here is my Instalife round up for February.

Baking February Macaron making with Dizzy / The finished treats 

Home made Sweet Potato Crisps / Thorntons Dessert Chocolates = AMAZE

Cambridge February Cambridge looking pretty at sunset / Pink bicycle on the market square

Preparing for #SheepishHeartBomb / My finished yarn bomb garland

Craft February

Evening jewellery making / New wooden stamp set

Cute new elephant print fabric / Amazing sewing themed buttons

Life February

Tea time for one / Daffodil blooms to will Spring to arrive

Snuggles with Tammy / Valentines outfit

What did you get up to in February? If you’d like to follow me on Instagram, you can find me under Claireabellemakes.


Instalife: Autumn in Cambridge

Instalife Autumn has begun claireabellemakes

Autumn in Cambridge makes me feel content. My daily bicycle ride to and from work has allowed me to enjoyed the misty mornings and crisp air and the colours have been just stunning. Although I’ve been unwell and tired for most of October, there have definitely been some highlights, even if just the simple things….

– Painted Street Pianos dotted about Cambridge for the ‘Play Me I’m Yours Project’. This has lifted me every time I hear one being played.

– Snuggles and blanket time with my kitty and some comfort food and cakes.

– Lattes and pumpkin carving dates with G and the first mittens outing of the season.

– Thoughtful presents in the mail from friends and finishing crochet presents for another friend.

– Sharing my vast collection of craft books on Instagram and being slightly embarrassed by the shocked response of my followers….

– A busy month for my Etsy shop, an international sale and some fabulous magazine features.

– A wonderful mug swap from cupcakemamma and a beautiful crocheted baby hat for my expectant friend by Lemons for Lemonade

What did you get up to in October? I’m looking forward to November as I plan for my first craft fair, attend a friend’s wedding and celebrate my birthday. I’m determined to finish some long term craft projects too and appreciate the last few leaves of the season!


Why I love Cambridge (and a yarn bomb)

I honestly feel like I live in the best place in the country. We moved from the big smoke to Cambridge 6 years ago and I utterly love it. Probably more and more as time goes by. Today I want to share with you some of my favourite things about the city.

The green space and river

Although Cambridge is a city, unlike London, the green space and idyllic river scenes make me feel like I can breathe. There is space. And cows.

The River Cam on claireabellemakes

People row and live on boats. After the rowing races they chuck each other in the river. Good old traditions.

I am also proud to say I can actually punt (only took me 5 years to learn).

The River Cam on claireabellemakes


You have to own a bike here. If you know me at all, in real life or through my blog, you know I’m obsessed with my bicycle. So much so, that I decorated it with bunting (tutorial here). It just makes sense to get around on a push bike.

Bicycles on claireabellemakes


As much as it is busy and sometimes noisy with the students around, the city doesn’t feel right without them there. During the holiday periods the city feels oddly deserted and the buzz returns when term begins. It’s a love/hate relationship. I should be grateful, I wouldn’t have a job without all 22,000 of them.


The city centre in Cambridge is filled with ancient buildings and inspiring sculptures. I find myself diverting on my journey to and from work some days, just to enjoy a different cobbled street or back path. Spaced along the river are wooden houses surrounded by pretty gardens and in the city centre a fun sculpture stands to pay tribute to a local eccentric who fundraised for charity his whole life.

Cambridge Architecture on claireabellemakes

A compact city

I love that you can reach anywhere in Cambridge within 30-40 minutes on foot or by bike. We never manage to leave the house without seeing someone we know. It’s friendly and compact. People stop to help each other and a good morning greeting isn’t unusual.

Creativity and that yarn bomb I mentioned…

Finally, it’s a creative city. People take up hobbies such as art, music, dance and craft. A yarn bombed lamp post or bike rack isn’t unusual.

Look as this guerilla knitting/crochet we saw today by the river. I wonder who could have put it there (*wink wink*)?! Perhaps they were inspired by Meredith of the blog One Sheepish Girl? She has declared today Sheepish Yarn Bombing Day!

Cambridge Yarn Bomb on claireabellemakes

Have you ever visited Cambridge? Or do you live in a place you love as much as I love Cambridge?


All images in this post are owned by claireabellemakes. Please contact me should you wish to use them.

I have shared this post on Handmade Monday – come see what others have been up to!

Instalife: Crafts and Cambridge

I’m never sure how interesting I can make an instagram roundup, but I thought I’d share with you what I’ve been up to over the last two weeks!

Instagram round up claireabellemakes

Cakes at our hugely popular WI meet, autumnal flowers from work, trifle at Mum’s, low flying hot air balloon, Moo cards & packaging for the shop, beginnings of a knitted cushion, cool cake tin in John Lewis, a Cambridge lunch date by the river.

Instagram round up claireabellemakes

New bicycle cushion by Mella Makes, tea with the boy, results from a crochet flowers class with Not So Granny, preparing images for my Etsy shop About page, bow ring prototype coming soon, ric rac rose, book binding with my Crafty Creatives box, cows and cyclists in Cambridge.

You can follow me on Instagram by searching for claireabellemakes.

I’ve had a nice two weeks of family time, crafting and working hard for the shop. I’ve been feeling a little unmotivated in other areas of my life lately, so I’ve decided from now, I am gonna get my butt in gear and work towards a better life balance. Wish me luck!

One last thing, a thanks to Cybele and Clare for the lovely blog nominations this week! Please check out their blogs over at Stitch One Knit Too and Lottie of London.