Vintage ~ Handmade ~ Homes ~ Gardens

Sunday, 29 December 2013

My vintage year

My vintage year - filled with so much creativity and time to travel. 

      So much I haven't told you.

              Here it is in a snapshot! 

Happy New Year xx

Tuesday, 5 November 2013

Kirsty Allsop

I met a soap maker a couple of years ago who was featured on the first Kirsty Makes programme. Naturally my first question was "what is she really like?" She responded that "what you see is what you get" - she's just like she is on the telly.

I was able to put that to the test last week when I saw Kirsty in person at the Country Living Christmas Fair.I got there early for Kirsty's session. The seats where already filling up an hour before she was due and by the time she arrived, 45 mins late, it was standing room only. Warm, funny and profusely apologetic, the crowd soon forgave her lateness as she answered questions from the audience for the next hour. Questions ranged from what make her shoes were through to the low down on Phil Spencer (he's pretty fastidious about his shirts apparently). 

Surprisingly self depreciating, I couldn't help but like her in a English head girl, jolly hockey sticks sort of way.


Saturday, 26 October 2013

Fall in Vermont

I've been absent for blogging for a few weeks now. I used to laugh when people said they had never been so busy since they retired and now I hear myself saying it! Maybe it's because I now have the time to do all those things I could never fit into weekends. I've had a lot of fun seeking out treasure for my vintage and handmade shop, upcycling galore and getting my vintage 'look' together - a mixture of pretty pastels and rustic white.

Another reason I have been absent is because I have more time to travel. I'm just back from a fab trip to New England. Some time in Boston (what a great city) and in Vermont to meet up with friends and enjoy the amazing fall colour. If you've been to Vermont at this time of year you will know just how stunning the tapestry of autumn colour is. For those of you who haven't I hope my photos will give you a taste of what you're missing.

As well as the wonder of nature at this time of year there was some things manmade that I was dying to see too - red barns and covered bridges! Look out for my next post to see more :-)


Friday, 20 September 2013

The house that time forgot

Have you ever seen an old house screened by shrubbery, unchanged by time and longed to see beyond the door? There's a house just like this a couple of streets away from my cottage that I've walked past so many times and longed to go inside and today I got the opportunity to do just that. What a treat! 

Some neighbours of mine have bought this beautiful 1840s house where the same family have lived for generations. Developers were keen to snap it up but the couple would only sell to a family who would love it just as they had. Isn't that lovely? So many old houses are being knocked down where I live and being replaced by blocks of flats it's quite heart breaking. The saving of this Victorian gem is so wonderful it made my heart sing!

The house needs a lot of work but I know will be developed sympathetically. I couldn't resist taking a few snaps before works start.It feels like every decade is represented in the decor. Layers of wallpaper, amazing paint colours, every type of floor covering.

Some beautiful original features remain intact - fireplaces, shutters, coving.

(No not an apparition - just my reflection!)

The house is magical. I was oohing and aahing in every room - I know you would too! The family are going to take into the next generation, breathe new life into it. I can't wait to see.


Friday, 30 August 2013


"O Walberswick's a village of very little tillage
In the northern part of Suffolk, and it's very picturesque;
And you fly from all the gritty, dirty bye-ways of the City,
To forget, in pleasant ramble, dreary duties at the desk"

Idyllic. Soaking up the remains of summer...

Monday, 19 August 2013

Vintage Vermont

I'm going to Vermont in 6 weeks time ... but first. I bought this lovely tea towel (dish cloth to US readers) in Cape Cod last year and it's been sitting with others in the 'too gorgeous to use on wiping dishes pile' since I got back. This pile includes some beauties from Anthropologie and I just can't bear to use them but don't want to just hide them away. So my Cape Cod tea towel is now a cushion! Simple side seams, secured at the back with a couple of vintage buttons and voila!

Nice huh?

(I just love this bakelite cutlery I bought while I was at the Cape.)

Anyway back to Vermont. I have some time to do a road trip between seeing friends while I'm there. I want to take in the Fall colour and I'm looking for suggestions for where to visit (I'll be based in Burlington and Manchester)while I'm there with a vintage theme - browsing antique stores, old homes etc. I really, really want to see some of these ...

and these...

(There's a bit of a red thing going on here isn't there...)

Anyhow, US friends, your suggestions would be most welcome. Be my tour guide!


Sunday, 11 August 2013

Wonderful Whitstable!

I love Whitstable. It's the perfect English seaside town. A lovely mix of traditional and trendy and when the sun shines it's unbeatable for a day out.

Whitstable has the perfect mix of beach huts, great individual shops (92% of all shops - yey no Starbucks!), a working fish market, boats bobbing in the harbour and laid back cafe culture. How can you resist a place that has street names like Squeeze Gut Alley (harking back to it's smuggler past)?

 As a bonus the regular Seaside Brocante was on when we were there last week and there were some lovely vintage items on sale.


You can find out more about Whitstable here

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