Thursday, 29 March 2012

May Day prettiness to our garden ...

With spring in the air my thoughts wandered to bank holidays today, Easter soon then on to the May bank holiday.  Our village still follows the tradition of celebrating the 1st of May by way of dancing whilst holding ribbons around a May Pole. It’s lovely to see the pole, May queen and her carriage decked in soft ribbons and delicate flowers in all colours.  I’ve decided I really can’t wait until May to indulge in pretty flowing ribbons so the children and I have brought some May Day prettiness to our garden by way of beautifying the swing...all aboard


Tuesday, 27 March 2012

I can almost taste the Easter bunnies’ bounty ...

I can almost taste the Easter bunnies’ bounty of chocolate and delights as Easter gets closer.  To welcome Bunny to our humble abode we have put together a basket of delights using the children’s hand decorated eggs that we’ve accumulated over the years. 
Well, it’s only polite to welcome the arrival of guests, even if they are of the furry, imaginary kind!!!

Monday, 26 March 2012

I often wonder what USA think of our styles, likes and general demeanour? ...

Sometimes it’s hard to see ourselves in the eyes of others and I often wonder what say, USA think of our styles, likes and general demeanour?  I watch a TV show on sky where one studio is based in LA and another is in the UK, the LA décor is a bright, happy mix of sunshine colours and fun where as the UK studio has black, white  and deep red walls, animal skulls in glass boxes and antlers hung from the walls.  I wouldn’t think twice when walking into the interior of the UK office, it’s very British and the norm to me but compared to its LA counterpart its quiet frankly ‘weird’. I spent Saturday in London and took a few random photos of things I saw through out the day and came to the conclusion that we Brits are utterly fab, unique, quirky, eccentric, free spirited and very expressive through what ever means we have available.  I’d love to know how others would describe us as ~ hopefully as ‘totally splendid’!

Rule Britannia!

Thursday, 22 March 2012

Village life : The first few warm days of the New Year ...

Having this recent spell of warm weather really is like a breath of fresh air.  The idea of our village covered in a blanket of snow not so very long ago seams to have ‘melted’ from my mind by the welcome arrival of the warm, spring days.  
Our daily walk along the country lane leading to my son’s school has suddenly been transformed from a vast expanse of boring brown to now having hints of green, yellow, pink and purple.  Everywhere I look there are signs of new life from spring bulbs and flowers to the new little green shoots appearing in the hedgerows and verges.  Our local pond has seen the welcome arrival of 'frog spawn a-plenty' and lambs are appearing in the surrounding fields.  I’m loving sneaking in an afternoon cuppa whilst soaking up the hazy sunshine watching birds busily gathering twigs and flitting off to make a cosy nest for their chicks (that are still only a glint in their fathers eyes) ;)
 The first few warm days of the New Year 
truly are fab.  
 Prettiness poking out of a vast expanse of brown :)
The excitement of counting Lambs on the way too and from school and working out how many new additions we can spot.
Spring just isn't spring without daff's :)
We take the return of fornicating frogs very seriously here !!! ;)
Wow, what a lotta frog spawn! They have been errr 'busy'? 
Blue sky and blossom :)

Wednesday, 21 March 2012

A little quick and easy way to create a touch of prettiness ...

A little quick and easy way to create a touch of prettiness 
I used garden wire and tissue paper, bish, bash, bosh :)

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

Apple tree images ...

I would like to bring to your attention a fantastic company called:
Below is an example of my name using their unique and eye catching photography: 

If your looking for an individual and special present look no further than this fab company :)

Sunday, 18 March 2012

So, I stained it with a tea bag ...

With Easter approaching my thoughts have turned to what treats to buy our two kids other than chocolate.  Every year we are showered with all types of chocolate in all kinds of pretty wrapping and for days after I find the kids gorging when they shouldn’t and wrappings stuffed in all manner of places they think Mum’s don’t look.  This Easter see’s my daughter in her teens and no longer excited by sweet flavoured lip gloss and pretty pink nail varnish – it’s black clothes & nails, purple lips and a love of scruffy looking boys in heavy rock bands all the way now.  I’m thinking we’ve outgrown Superdrug for Easter goodies this year!  So, I turned to my favourite place – Etsy.  This site never fails to draw me in, get me cooing over all of the beautiful things and leave with a wish list as long as my arm. I found the perfect present from a Spanish company called PRRINT
and I can not tell you how chuffed I am with the quality and the distinctive look their pieces have.  
They produce prints on to the pages of vintage Spanish books – genius!  I searched around in our attic for a suitable sized frame and found the perfect one however, the mount was way too light and ‘new’ looking to suit the old paper so I stained it with a tea bag to give it that un-even, aged effect.  Voila!  
I know, I know, *cringe* not really a suitable subject matter for ‘Easter’ but titled 'Seize the day' I'm thinking it kinda has the right sentiment?  One things for sure it's a gift that is truly unique, I know she’ll absolutely love and enjoy long after the Easter bunny has hopped off and that won’t leave shiny paper hidden in all the places Mum’s don’t look!
Nice but ready for an update.
Starting to stain with a damp tea bag.
Carpe diem is a phrase from a Latin poem by Horace that has become an aphorism.  It is popularly translated as 
"Seize the day".

Saturday, 17 March 2012

Really … more chintz?

Since having our kitchen redecorated in calming creams I am trying ‘oh so very hard’ to create a simple and minimal look.  With a café style blind needed to finish off the window I headed off to our local fabric shop, my mind brimming with thoughts of simple Ticking fabric in very discrete colours.  The store had rows and rows of the most gorgeous Ticking in every colour imaginable with several being the perfect choice for our spangly new kitchen but my eye kept being drawn to a small row of chintz.  I kept chanting over and over ‘step away from the rosy chintz, keep it simple’.  I stood pondering over Ticking for way too long and when the shop assistant asked if I had finally made up my mind my mouth engaged before my willpower kicked in and I said “yes, I’d like the rosy chintz please”.  On the drive home, if it was possible to I would have been kicking myself, all I could think was ‘grrrr once again I’m filling a room with a mixture of colours, styles and chintz’.  Once home my very limited sewing skills were put to the test when trying to match the pattern repeat on two panels and making a lining (both I’d never attempted before) but after sewing and un-picking, measuring and more un-picking the end result is better than I thought I could produce (thankfully).  I tentatively hung my masterpiece up with the nagging thought “should have bought Ticking, should have stuck to the plan, really … more chintz?”.  
I stood back, placed my hands on my hips and gradually started to assess my choice through half closed eyes …. 
I then let out a large sigh – of relief. 
 No room of mine is complete without the prettiness of a rosy piece of chintz and finally, the room is complete.

Friday, 16 March 2012

Yummy Mummy week ...

Last night my lovely friend Karen held a social evening in conjunction with Yummy Mummy week to raise much needed funds for CLIC Sargent a charity who help children to cope with Cancer.  There were the yummiest of cakes, wine, cuppa teas and conversation flowing all evening and with such fantastic raffle prizes to be won the evening was a great success. Over £100.00 was raised in total - just goes to show what can be accomplished with effort, generosity, great friends, tea and cake.

Wednesday, 14 March 2012

Bring on the sewing machine ...

Our lil puppy dog is literally eating herself out of her house and home (crate and bed)!  We put her in her crate over night, go and see her first thing in the morning and she is surrounded by large white fluffy bits of foam that was the padding in her bed the night before. This is becoming a regular thing now and no matter what deterrent (or exciting new toy) we deploy she still looks like she’s in the middle of the largest candy floss ball you ever did see by morning. Bring on the sewing machine!!!

This afternoon I have lovingly made her an ultra soft, pink, blankie cushion. I basically made an envelope cover * out of an old blanket, attached the all important bone as decoration using bondaweb * and inserted a pillow.

Fingers crossed this one stays intact (I actually much prefer it to the previous shop bought posh circular one), with a 14 week old puppy though I can see I’ll be busy ‘bringing on the sewing machine’ for a while yet!

* Envelope Cover:  See my previous post for the method used.

* Bondaweb: See my previous post for the method used.   

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Picking and admiring the first bouquet of spring offerings ...

The feeling of picking and admiring the first (albeit small) bouquet of spring offerings from the garden lifts the soul :)

Monday, 12 March 2012

The magpie in me is causing a clutter problem ...

I can’t seam to go in to a charity shop without coming out with a stash of goodies.  The magpie in me though is causing a clutter problem throughout each room in our home therefore action has to be taken.  I have picked up, assessed, pondered, considered, and deliberated over each piece of bargain booty of prettiness trying to bring myself to part with it all in the name of ‘minimal’
 ….but I just can’t!  
The solution? Doubling up and layering.
  For some reason I had never thought of this before but I’m really pleased with the effect plus I can buy and stack to my hearts content – yippee.

Sunday, 11 March 2012

My mirror gamble has paid off ...

I am a wife for a property maintenance guy …. "and"? some might say, others who are also cohabiting with such men will know their properties are the very last to be maintained.  “After doing it all day I’m home now and want a rest from it” is the reply I get to my “can you just do …” questions.  One of my husband’s clients entertained the Homes and Gardens crew last week who had come to do a photo shoot of their home, including my husbands handy work, oh how I’d love the opportunity!  Anyways … I have been waiting all but 3 years to have my husbands help re-decorating our kitchen and finally the threat of getting someone else in to do the work got the job done (“I’m not paying someone to do what I can do myself” came the reply - result)! It has been, replastered, coving put up, re-painted with far too many coats of cream paint to cover over dark green, kitchen units painted, 17 new door knobs stained and fixed, table sanded and waxed, blind made, and my favourite bit … mirror used as a splash back.  Having three years to decided how to decorate certainly made me 100% sure of the look I wanted and my mirror gamble has paid off. 
 I'm (finally) over the moon with my spangly new kitchen and my very own property maintenance guy did a splendid job x

Saturday, 10 March 2012

I want to share with you a lil secret ...

Being a self confessed magazine junkie I try and get my fix where ever and when ever I can so ... I want to share with you a lil secret: 

is an online magazine that has me captivated from start to finish. 

91 Magazine was launched in October 2011, and is a quarterly online magazine,published by Patchwork Harmony.

Collated by a range of fantastic creative people, it features news, style tips, shopping ideas, interiors, features on craft and vintage style and proudly supports small businesses, designers and crafts people.

Grab a cuppa, cosy up, indulge and enjoy :)

Thursday, 8 March 2012

Sharing spring goodies ...

A lil early Easter gift I've put together to be left on the door step of a friend so their Friday can begin with fresh Goose eggs for breakfast :)

 Sharing spring time goodies.

Wednesday, 7 March 2012

wile away an hour happily rummaging through boxes of buttons and badges

A trip to our local Army Surplus Store with my teenage daughter today saw us wile away an hour happily rummaging through boxes of buttons and badges (amongst other things). Below is a small selection of bounty we purchased to glam up jackets, bags and have a go at creating unique jewellery ...

Can't wait to get the sewing box out :)

Sunday, 4 March 2012

Welcome arrival of early spring sunshine...

Yesterday afternoon saw the welcome arrival of early spring sunshine.  The back door was left wide open all afternoon, washing dried on the line, the dog slept in a sunny spot on the lawn and I had the urge to craft!  I borrowed my friend’s lovely daughter and we set to making something pretty for her new bedroom.  As I have some kind of random obsession for lamps we selected one from my ever increasing stash and set about personalising it and making it fit for Beth’s brand spanking new room.

We used decoupage to brighten up the base and added the all important scattering of bling.  We then delved into my bits and bobs box full of things I’ve saved from cards, presents, broken jewellery, etc and used these to adorn the shade.
Ta dah - a la very swish!
One, slightly boring lamp (but a snip at £1.00).
Base now looking suitably fancy.

Shade looking even fancier.

A perfect way to spend a sunny afternoon :)