Saturday, 15 June 2013

The Bottom of the Ironing Basket

It's amazing what you find at the bottom of the ironing basket.  I am one of those women who never clears the basket.  I am not going to spend time ironing items that I may or may not ever use or wear again but that I'm not prepared to part with, so they may linger at the TBOTIB for a long while!  Goodness knows how long ago it was that my mother found this beautiful antique cloth/bed cover to sell on the website but I wanted to keep.  There it was lurking at the bottom all crumpled and forgotten but now hanging as a curtain in one of the bedrooms.

This room was my office until I bought this single bed which we didn't need but I just had to have, so it had to go in the smallest room which is now another spare room and my sewing room.  I also resurrected a ginger coloured wood (my pet hate) curtain pole which we had taken down, painted it with grey emulsion (Dulux worked perfectly well) and waxed it.  I have never used clips before but these are great for no sewing and I just folded over the top deep hem to create a 'ruffled' top.  Hey presto, a complete new window makeover all for the price of the clips.

(I also found a pair of white linen trousers I'd forgotten about but, sad to say, I must have been considerably lighter when they first went into the TBOTIB).

Have you ever found something you'd forgotten about in the ironing pile?

Saturday, 4 May 2013

The 8th of May is Flora Day

 On Wednesday it will be Flora Day in Helston where I used to live.  This dancing through the streets dates back to medieval times and serves to celebrate the passing of winter and arrival of Spring.  The early morning dance starts at 7 am and the sound of the big bass drum never ceased to excite me all the years I watched and danced on this day.  The children's dance is lovely to watch with all the children dressed in white and different head-dresses according to their school.  Our daughter danced one year and spent the whole time with a cross look on her face as, with a surname beginning with T, there were no boys left to dance with and she had to dance with another girl!

The midday dance is spectacular with the men in top hats and tails and the ladies dressed in all their finery.  It is a huge privilege to be invited to lead the dance and one has to have been born in Helston to be entitled to do this.

All the dancers wear Lily of the Valley and the shops and houses are decorated with bluebells and greenery.
I won't be there this year but every Flora Day my heart is there dancing along to the oh so familiar tune.

If you have never heard of Flora Day you may remember Terry Wogan had a hit with 'The Floral Dance' in 1977 and the Brighouse and Rastrick Band in 1976.  Katie Moss wrote the lyrics and music 'founded on an old Cornish air' (as stated on this pamphlet cover) whilst travelling home on the train after an incident which happened whilst visiting Helston on Flora Day in 1911.  Apparently she was watching the couples dancing and felt very envious, then a young man came along and swept her off her feet.

Having mentioned bluebells I will include this wonderful photo on Pinterest of Micheldever Wood not too far from where I now live.  I bet the scent here is divine!

Thursday, 2 May 2013

If I should have a daughter....

I wanted to share this with you; I hope you love it as much as I do.

A long time friend of mine's 19 year old daughter has just commenced chemotherapy and put this on her blog diary.  (The poem ends where she says 'You really ought to meet my mother' which is almost 4 minutes).

Sunday, 28 April 2013

Mother and Daughter Walking

Love this!

1985  Geordie, Ruth and Rosie
2013  Bodhi, Rosie and Ruth

Friday, 26 April 2013

Something for the Weekend

Today I made pasties for friends and us for the weekend.  Mine is already eaten; I can't resist them.  Apologies to any Cornish followers, I have never perfected the art of crimping!

Wishing you all a lovely weekend.

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

Sweet Peas

I have made this for a friend, hope she likes it.

The sweet peas were grown from seed, the twisted willow is from our garden and I have made the pot holder from hessian with a picture of a sweet pea I printed onto fabric and appliqued onto the hessian.

Friday, 19 April 2013

Happy Weekend

Think this photo should have the saying 'Live life as if someone left the gate open'!  As you can see Henry is growing and enjoying life!

Wishing you all a very happy weekend.  Looks as though we will be having some sunshine.

Sunday, 14 April 2013

Week's Round Up

Well my plans for getting out in the garden last week have had to be put on hold.  It's either too blooming cold or now a wet weekend.  I've not really tried planting seeds before but am pleased with my efforts at growing Coriander,


 Peppers (or were they Chillis?)

and Sweet Peas

so far.

A friend who is a ceramicist had organised an exhibition in Chichester this week so I went along to have a look.  I love the colours in this torso; the puffin was made by another friend.

Raku by another friend.  (I have also tried this)

These life size sheep would look lovely in a garden.

Quick interval for lunch here - Nigel Slater's 'Mozzarella with Basil Crust'.

It is delicious and, to me, nothing is more redolent of Summer than the fragrance of Basil.  Yes, we will be eating in the sunshine in the garden sometime this year!

A shopping trip to some outlet shops near us resulted in my saving £188 on these two pairs of Crew and Timberland boots.  Bargains, and it is still the weather to wear boots too!

Surely we will have some warmer weather next week.

Monday, 1 April 2013

Goodwood Antiques Fair

Well, I did find some of the things on my wish list and am very pleased with everything I bought today.  I often find that I buy a lot from just one stallholder and today I found four eiderdowns (including a matching pair) and two trugs from the same man.  (A certain little dog decided to pose in the photo too!)

I often have French trugs for sale so have bought a Sussex trug; this one has seen lots of use and I often wonder what the previous gardener grew - were they a vegetable or flower grower?  The other trug was used to display one dozen Heinz Cream of Celery soup tins.

Soda syphons seem to be having a resurgence in popularity and I particularly like this one.  I would love to have found a blue one but didn't see any at all.

I shall keep this mould myself.  I was told it is a blancmange mould but I think it may be a curd or cream cheese mould.  There is the shape of a pineapple in the base, though, suggesting a sweet rather than savoury use.  Maybe you know.....  Apparently an embossed pineapple was a sign of welcome.

Other items I bought were a shopping basket (how did they get all their shopping into a basket this size?), a butter stamp, a barkcloth curtain, two guest towels and 2 metres of Hungarian grain sacking.

However, the piece de resistance has got to be this bed which has yet to be assembled so I am only showing the foot and headboards.  Once I saw it I just had to have it; I just love it.  I shall put it either in the loft bedroom (which has yet to be decorated and cleared of all my Oh So Vintage 'stuff' and cardboard boxes etc. or I may put it in the summerhouse to be used as a day bed.

I hope if you have attended an antiques fair today, either as a buyer or seller that you have had a very successful day.

Sunday, 31 March 2013

Goodwood Wish List

Tomorrow I will be attending the Goodwood Antiques Fair.  Quite often I am disappointed at these events to find so many stalls full of china and costume jewellery but this is my wish list of things I might hope to find.

Some pretty floral enamelware

and other interesting kitchenalia.

Some pretty perfume bottles

and vintage bags

Of course, I will be ever hopeful of finding some beautiful linens and eiderdowns.

I wonder how lucky I will be!

(All images courtesy of Pinterest)

Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Using Your Library

I have only recently joined our local library as I previously always bought my books from Amazon.  I have a bit of a thing about new books; I love the smell of the new paper and being the first person to open its pages!    Also the last time I borrowed a book (many years ago before you could renew on line) I was annoyed to pay out more in a fine than the book would have cost me to buy!  But having bought so many books, perhaps not enjoyed or even read some of them before donating them to a charity shop I decided to join the library on line.  I hadn't realised you can reserve any book for 50p and now you can even  take out magazines on loan (though these are restricted to a 7 day loan).

This is what I have borrowed today all for the princely sum of 50p

with some images from the book.

Friday, 15 March 2013

Vintage Posters

Our meeting on Poster Art was really interesting.  The subject matter is so vast that most people had narrowed it down to posters with a particular theme.  We had railway posters, travel posters, suffragette posters and the most popular of all time posters.  I have picked out a few that I think are particularly interesting.

This was the original Pears Soap poster and the painting 'Bubbles' by 19th century artist John Millais was used.

I hadn't realised that objectors to the suffragette movement had produced so many awful and damning posters.  Take these two for example

The following posters are iconic and surely familiar to all.

(I used to have this Biba one on my bedroom wall)

And an all time favourite!

Monday, 11 March 2013


For my art group meeting tomorrow we have been studying Poster Art.  I have decided to concentrate on wartime recruitment posters .  The one above is the most well known one and certainly the most copied.  It first appeared as the cover illustration for the magazine London Opinion on 5 September 1914.  It depicts Lord Kitchener, then British Secretary of State for War.  This image was quickly reproduced in poster size and was seen everywhere appealing for recruits into the Army.

There were a lot of posters encouraging young women to join the Women's Land Army.

as well as the other services.

and, of course, women were needed to take men's places in the factories.

Of course these posters are produced and displayed to have instant impact and to get the message across to the viewer in as few words as possible and the one below certainly does that.

'We Can Do It' is not, in fact, a recruitment poster but an American propaganda poster produced in 1943 used as an inspirational image to boost worker morale and encourage existing workers to work harder!.  It was actually seen very little during the war but rediscovered in  the early 1980s and widely produced in many forms, particularly to promote feminism.  The poster certainly packs a punch, so to speak!