Tuesday, 29 March 2011

Country Living Fair

Last Wednesday I went to the Country Living Fair in London (why it's held in London I don't know, surely it should be held in the country!). It's the third year in succession that I've been and I thoroughly enjoy it each time. There is just so much to see (and buy!). There are a lot of the same stands each year and there is a glut of polka dotty, Cath Kidstoney type things (all very nice, don't get me wrong) but it is refreshing to linger at the stands selling different things especially those made by such very talented artists. My neighbour who is a ceramicist had a stand; she specialises in raku and crystalline.

Another friend who is a textile designer and who has her own loom also had a stand. This is one of her scarves which I treated myself to recently; I just love it.

I loved the stand by another textile artist named Charlotte Clowes which can be seen in this photo.

I was exhausted by the end of the day, goodness knows how the exhibitors manage to last the whole five days!

Tuesday, 22 March 2011

Past Sewing Projects

I have been emptying a large coffer we have so that I can move it to paint a floor. It contains things like old baby clothes that I can't bear to part with, curtains I still like but don't fit any of my windows, dresses I used to wear to balls which I will never have occasion to wear again (nor be able to fit into!) etc. etc. Lots of memories in this piece of furniture.

I used to do a lot more sewing than I do now and came across all these tapestry cushions I have worked. What a shame they have been relegated to the chest. The first one I sewed was the tulips one. I was heavily pregnant and remember sewing this sitting in the garden in the summer of 1984.

The cross stitch was worked in 1993 and I have recently re-found this and hung it on the wall. I wonder where this will end up in years to come! In an auction house perhaps and the buyer wondering who R D T was and whether she lived by the motto 'Not to spend my time for naught'!
My daughter has moved further away from me (geographically I hasten to add) this week and has set up home with her boyfriend, a new chapter in her life. Lots of memories came flooding back as I removed these clothes I made for her from the chest. I used to enjoy knitting but haven't done any for many, many years. The fairisle coat and bonnet were worked in 2 ply wool and the Guernsey was also worked in a fine yarn.

Back in the days when we used to go to naval balls you just couldn't buy gowns in the shops, or if you could they were very expensive so I went on a dressmaking course to learn how to make them with all the boning in the bodice etc.

I hope you are all having a lovely weekend. I have just finished painting the dining room floor this evening so will post photos later in the week. I am considering painting a stencil around the edges too so will see how that looks.

Thursday, 10 March 2011


Here are some photos of items I bought at Ardingly last week. I already have a pair of Victorian children's boots but couldn't resist buying some more (after all, a girl can't have too many shoes!) They are supposed to be for sale but so far I have only listed one pair on the website as I just love them myself. These are the ones I had for a Valentine's present several years ago.
There must be so much history in these shoes; I wonder who they belonged to, where the child lived, whether their shoes were passed down to a sibling or if they themselves received them as a hand me down. One pair has scuffed toes and I wonder if the child was scolded for this and I wonder if they were kept for best for wearing to Sunday school perhaps.
This brown pair are the smallest; the soles measure just 4 inches.

I also bought this stool which can only be described as very rustic. I absolutely love it especially now it has had some wax polish and elbow grease. The centre is very 'damaged' and I would imagine it has been used for chopping wood.

Saturday, 5 March 2011

An Unexpected Prezzie

I had a lovely surprise this morning when the postman brought me an unexpected present from my daughter - 'The French Inspired Home' and I LOVE it. The photographs are amazing. Here is a taster.

Thursday, 3 March 2011


Father Christmas didn't buy me the Emma Bridgewater tulips mug I wanted so I had to buy it myself. I just love red tulips but my local shop only had dark pink ones. I also treated myself to this little red coffee pot too.

I also bought this material which I intend to make into some cushions for in the kitchen.
I went to Ardingly Antiques Fair earlier this week. It was extremely cold but I did buy a few nice things for the website which I will share with you on my next post.