Tuesday, October 7, 2014

From drab to fab!

Hello my lovelies! How the last few weeks have flown! It seems I blinked and missed the last three! This time of year always feels a little manic, with the kidlets back at school, settling into a new routine, and the last days of summer waving goodbye whilst ushering in shorter days and longer nights. We daren't complain as we've had such a beautiful Indian summer, with warm, sunny days lingering a little longer than usual for this time of year.

I did manage to squeeze in a little wander round the boot sale on one such glorious day, and I came away feeling very pleased with my find of the day. Okay...hubby made no attempt at hiding his horror at my haul of a vintage sewing stool! And yes, it looked worse for wear to say the least as I dragged it off to the car, but one has to sometimes think beyond the obvious! All it needed was some tender loving care...

Here is how it looked before...tired, dirty, dated...

I carefully removed the somewhat ghastly, furry, maroon cover, as well as the stained red satin from it's bowels. Eugh...A slightly less than savoury chore, with a lot of dust and fibres flying everywhere. Note to self: Next time, where a mask! After I'd stripped it bare, I gave it a spit and polish, sanded down the legs and took a paint brush to it. I just love the shapely mid-century legs, and decided to show them off in mustard yellow, with their tootsies dipped in pink! Some wadding, pretty fabric, trim, glue and a few staples later, and I was as pleased as a pig in mud with my new sewing stool!


I now have a lovely, cheerful new sewing box/stool to keep all the bits at hand when sitting in front of the Goggle box to do a little crafting.  

A lesson learned from this little project? Always try to see the good in something. Potential might just be lurking beneath the layer of dirty velour!


Saturday, September 13, 2014

How do I love thee...?

Today's post is a serious, in depth study and analysis of a love affair...Or perhaps just my interpretation of a love sonnet? To all chocoholics out there...this is for you...

'How do I love thee?
Let me count the ways...'

I am convinced that when Elizabeth Barrett Browning wrote this famous sonnet, she was talking about chocolate. What else could possibly have stirred up such emotion and feelings of abandon?

'I love thee to the depth and breadth and height my soul can reach, when feeling out of sight. For the ends of Being, and ideal Grace...
I love thee to the level of every day's most quiet sun...

...and candle light...'

{Or, as it may be in my the truck loads...Mmmmm...a truck load of truffles? Yes please!}

'I love thee with the the breath, 
Smiles, tears of all my life'

Hmmmm...What could have urged Ms Browning to such heights of devotion? It means one thing...This passionate declaration of love clearly tells me that 'Nutella' is in fact a product that dates back to Victorian times. It obviously had it's existence a long time before Nigella chose to share her delectable Nutella Cheesecake with civilization...And perhaps Elizabeth herself was the first to whip up this velvety desert of desire...

....But thank you NIGELLA for sharing the recipe...(click on link to take you to heavenly recipe!)

We all know Nigella as the queen of smoulder in the kitchen...Her love for chocolate lures her to the fridge in the dark of night, where she whips out her spoon to delve into the delicious delights of deserts, hidden on the shelves of her generous, double door fridge...  

But don't we all...?

Okay...maybe not...


Sunday, September 7, 2014

An apple a day...

Do you wear vintage? Are you one of the lucky ones that fall in the 'small' category, or are you considered a 'plus size' like me? Well, if the latter, you will know just how tricky it can be to find good quality vintage clothing that are a little more generous in size, yet feminine and flattering. That is exactly why I always look out for, and get excited over vintage inspired pieces on the High Street. This summer I fell in love with a cheery summer dress by Pepperberry. I love their designs, specifically produced with busty ladies in mind. They always allow for a little more room, and not a straining button in sight! This dress had the typical emphasized, nipped-in waistline, reminiscent of the 1950's, with flattering capped sleeves and a cross-over bust.

I waited for the summer sales to kick off, in the hope that I would be able to snap it up at a reduced price. And guess what? Patience paid off...I was able to get it at half the original price! Result! And I love it...The length is a little shorter than I'd like, but teamed with my crinoline petticoat it is perfect!

The perfect little dress for summer days...

I adore the piping detail around the neckline, and it's also carried through to the waist...

I am delighted when non-vintage retailers get it so right...I love this dress, and I know it is an investment piece that I will have in my wardrobe for a long time...It will be a staple for lazy, hazy summer days...


Sunday, August 24, 2014

Come fly with me!

Hello my lovelies! How is your weekend treating you? Hopefully with long, leisurely lie-ins and time spent with loved ones? I am enjoying a rare few days off work, so I'm making the most of my free time to indulge in favourite, playing with the kids (yes, I still play!), a spot of shopping, and catching up on a few bullet points on the old 'to-do-list'! One of those being a sort out of my wardrobe. Since I started work, I have been quite lazy with putting thought and effort into my daily outfits. I love dressing up, but the corporate environment of the office only allows for monochromatic black and white! How unimaginative! Those who know me, can tell you just how this goes against every fibre in my rainbow searching being! So today I decided to reach for that little red frock in my wardrobe that I had thrifted quite some time ago. Today, was going to be a red day!

Now, I put this outfit together, starting with the red dress, and adding  a wonderful vintage hat which I had acquired about two years ago. I adore this hat!

Does it remind you of something? Hubby calls it my air hostess hat! Hmmm? And now, having put the whole outfit together, I definitely understand what he means! There is a definite air of 'cabin crew' about it!

Just look at this 1960's air stewardess! 

Perhaps a quirky handbag and cheery shoes will add a touch of fun to the whole ensemble, and make it a little less 'come fly with me?'

I'll leave you with these archival gems...
Flying in the fifties... here's a change...

And they got shorter still!
Swinging sixties...Can't imagine these being discreet coming down the emergency shute...But then I suppose THAT would be the least of your worries!

I think me and my short pins will stick with the classy 1940's!, just need to find me a pilot! Till next time!

Sunday, August 17, 2014

This old thing?

Is is just me, or has anyone else out there been glued to Channel 4 for the first series of  'This old thing'? Dawn O'Porter did a sterling job at looking every inch the embodiment of all things 60's! This series aimed to convert high street shoppers  into more adventurous, vintage loving, vintage wearing fashionistas. Now, I for one have always loved vintage, and I have been shopping for vintage for a long time now. I do not EVER turn my nose up at a pre-loved frock from the forties, or a 70's blouse that has already lived the high life. Oh no sirree! I believe, just like the very lovely Ms O'Porter, that there is much life left in vintage garments, and the magic lies in seeing the potential in something that is unique and completely different from anything anyone else is wearing. Where do you stand when it comes to purchasing clothes? Do you roll your eyes at the mere thought of wearing 'second hand', or does the idea of finding one-off gems from the past get your pulse racing? 

Today, I am featuring my first 'outfit post'. Inspired by the recent television show, I thought I'd share an oldie, but a goodie, something which I had found on the hanging rail of a pre-loved shop. I fell in love with it at first glance...

Yes, this old thing! This skirt wolf whistled at me from the other side of the shop! When I spotted the yummy, colourful stripes, it was all I needed to frog leap across another shopper, all whilst crossing my fingers that it would be my size! That is the one unfortunate thing about shopping for vintage...The ladies from yesteryear had tiny little waists, and this does not always fit my size 14 frame! The sizing of vintage garments are very small in comparison to modern sizing. All this means, is that you have to look and dig a little deeper, and with an open mind! But, the sun was shining down on me that day, for the skirt was a perfect fit!

Perfect for a sneaky cocktail evening...

Perfect for work...

...or play?

To top it off, I found this cheerful embroidered bag at the same time!

Yes, there is much live left in 'this old thing'!


Saturday, August 9, 2014

Let it shine!

Today...a little lamp make-over...

This lamp used to sit on my little man's bedside table. He has a new one now, so said lamp was the back of the cupboard it went. It spent a long time in the wilderness of 'The Forgotten', but it has been called back for duty! I need a new lamp for my work desk. One that shines bright at midnight and into the wee morning hours...A light that doesn't fade or shy away, whilst I make and create, sewing little stitches and  craft new creations. This is the lamp in it's 'forgotten state'...

Armed with a can of spray paint, a fresh retro apple green, I set to work. Once it had a couple of coats, it waited...was almost a second time forgotten...

It needed a little depth, a little something new and brave! I found some transparent stickers, and decided that was 'IT'!

Now, it has to be a big, brave light. Not a shy one that hides under a shade. Oh no sirree! So of course only a big, brave, giant bulb will do!

'Hide it under a bush? Oh no! I'm gonna let it shine!'

I love my new brave lamp. I look forward to it keeping me company late at night whilst everyone else is tucked up in bed, and I'm beavering away at the sewing machine. And best of didn't cost a penny! Just using what I already had! 

Hope your weekend is a jolly one!


Thursday, August 7, 2014

A Fishy Farewell...

Hello m'dearies! The past two weeks have seen blissfully happy days, and then days with mixed emotions too! Very dear friends of ours are moving on to pastures new. They are undertaking a great adventure by relocating (for now) to a continent far-far-away from us, and although I am so very excited for them, I can't help but feel the nagging void that their absence is creating! Sometimes in life you meet new people, and before you know it they have tread deep footprints all the way deep into your heart. They become your dearest friends, the kind who catch you when you fall, and build you up when something feels broken. They encourage, listen, advise and forgive, and if you're very blessed, they always see the greater in you. Above all, they laugh with you, sing with you, dance with you, until your belly hurts, and you loose your voice. They reminisce with you. Oh, how I will miss this precious family!

We decided to have one last supper before they left. As they're embracing a whole new culture on their travels, we thought it only apt to give them a typically British send-off...a 'fishy farewell' in the shape of a 'Fish-and-chips dinner party'!

As fish and chips was traditionally served in newspaper, I decided to use newspaper as a table cloth instead, and teamed with red and blue it looked cheerful indeed!

Then, a few typically British touches to dress the table...

A few Chinese of course as that's where they're headed!

With belly laughter, food and natter we said our goodbyes. Until we meet again.