Thursday, March 29, 2007

Fabulous Flappers and Beautiful Bags.

I wanted to introduce to you today the talents of a friend of mine. Margaret Neale creates these adorable Flapper Doll ornaments, each one being unique.
She has an original chalkware one dating from 1913, which she used to create a mould. This is then cast in plaster.
Maggie spends many hours hand painting these wonderful creatures, making each one an original work of art. I love their appealing eyes, so typical of the Flapper era.

They are then embellished with vintage treasures to give them an authentic antique look. They display beautifully amongst original dolls, as well as sitting pretty with more modern pieces.
And as if that isn't clever enough! - Maggie also spends hours hand embroidering woollen bags with typical 1930's images.

A woollen blanket was dyed this soft aqua colour, then embroidered with wool and silk threads and worked into a wonderfully nostalgic flower boarder design. The bags are all lined with vintage floral fabrics and further embellished with old brooches with twinkling stones.

These fabulous items have been added to my website today. Please visit the catalogue for more details.
Yesterday, I visited a textile fair and met up with Sue and Donna.
Here we are enjoying a coffee in the lovely gallery cafe; we decided it was more appropriate to say 'fabric' rather than 'cheese', so it was rather funny to hear the chorus coming from our direction, whilst our photo was being taken!

Donna so very kindly bought me a present. I had admired on her blog, the broom that she recently purchased; and she bought one for me!! She also gave me a beautiful piece of 1950's flocked fabric perfect for fairy dolls. Thanks again Donna for your kindness and for going to such lengths to buy the gorgeous broom for me! I shall think of you whilst I sweep my floors!!

And here are my purchases from the day out:

A pretty cotton spriggy printed fabric in the background, a stunning Daisy chain headpiece, lace and ribbons and velvet Violets!

The collection above came from a charity shop in the town. Two rose printed pillowcases, coat hangers waiting to be recovered, antique lace and thread and the fabulous vintage Needlecraft book...all for £1.50!!
And to round the day of wonderfully, I was bought a beautiful bouquet of flowers from my great friend Debbie, who also visited the Textile fair with me.

I have been married for 22 years tomorrow, so these were an anniversary treat!

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

Box Frame.

Just a quick update today.
I think the spring weather has had some kind of effect on me and I feel the need to clean! And tidy! My workroom is the tidiest it has EVER been! I spent ALL weekend making it workable....well it was a BIG job, I had let things get way out of hand! I should be able to work a lot easier in there now!
Anyway, the update is the box frame that is now complete. With the help from my hubby, we produced this little display box using one of the picture frames that I bought at the flea market recently.

Hub used some pine boards to create the sides and shelves. I glued vintage French Ticking on the backing board.

I've displayed my French coffee cups along it's shelves, but it is a bit too regimented for my liking, so other treasures will be added when I discover them!
The cup on the left is my favourite and probably the oldest - funny thing is though, I don't drink coffee, in fact I hate the stuff!! (LOVE tea though!)

Can you spot the odd one out? One of them is an English coffee cup!

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Make-Do and Mend.

I've been on a rescue mission this week. I had this lovely old 'Comfy quilt' whose edges had worn a little thin, so I have added a vintage cotton paisley print as a wide binding to all of the edges. This should help it to last many more years now and it also oozes a little more charm.

I am always finding delightful old eiderdowns too that have seen better days. Often the corners wear through and they start to leak their feathers. This little Deco one had that problem. So I made it these fun corner patches from a similar 1930's eiderdown fabric.

Other make-do and mend ideas that feature in our home include the curtains in one of my daughter's bedrooms. They were made from two damaged lace tablecloths joined together and backed with a pale pink cotton sheet.

Thrifty, but I hope you think, attractive.

The curtains in the living room where also created from sheets. This time C19th French linen ones. The edges were worn, so I added scraps of vintage French fabrics in a patchwork effect to strengthen them, but it also adds a decorative touch - no one need know that they were holey sheets!
Finally, THANK YOU, for all of the comments that I received for the post below. I have never had that many before! I think perhaps we should all make similar comments to the editor of 'Country Living' magazine, as it seems we all share the same views.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Sounding Off!

I have been wondering whether to write this post for a few days now. I know that there are many 'Country Living ' magazine fans out there, all raving about how fabulous it is, but I have not been impressed with it for some time now. I have bought or subscribed since the 90's, and have always hurried to the interior section, as that is where my interest really lies. It used to be my Bible and was very inspiring, but I now find it repetitive and ordinary.
Last months issues, for example, had a complete copy of photographs that had already featured in the September 1998 issue.
Here it is in that issue.

And here are the recycled photographs in last months edition.

I admit that the article had been re-written, but it is the photographs that hold my interest and inspire me.
Then in this months issue...

Although the house featured had been rephotographed, I still felt I had seen it all before, because the owner still decorated in the same style. (No offence to the owner, she has a lovely home, I just want to see something new.)

Of the two photos above, the top one is this month's issue and the lower one August 1999.
The magazine only features one property per month, surely it wouldn't be too difficult to find 12 new inspiring homes each year?
A few months ago, it seemed that they couldn't print an issue without mentioning certain well know designers and their latest merchandise, now they seem to be recycling old news.
I have decided not to renew my subscription in a couple of months time - anyway, reading Blogs is far more inspiring!

On a different subject; a couple of ladies asked about the china pots in the post below and wondered what they were. Here is a closer look.

They are in fact a mustard pot and a pepper pot! They are around 8cm tall and unmarked, but probably Victorian.


"Happy Mothering Sunday to All Mums!" - 18th March 2007.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Spring Greens

I have been inspired by the fresh greens that have sprung up in my front garden this season......
to paint this little cupboard a very vivid shade.

It is in the hallway just outside the kitchen. A useful little cupboard for spare light bulbs and other bits and bobs!

I bought this vintage bird cage from Louise recently. It is a gorgeous aqua green and it stands in our Laundry room. I thought I may line the bottom in vintage wallpaper and display some of my fairy dolls inside.
Here are some other spring greens that accompany the cage.
I found the 'N' for Nostalgia whilst on holiday in Devon a few years ago.
Spring fever has even crept into my crafting this week too....

Have a happy Springtime!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Strawberries and Cream.

'We are getting there'....! That always seems to be the motto in our home when we are tackling DIY! I need to put a few things up on the walls, such as the gold frame that I found at the flea market last week. This will become a box frame to display my vintage French coffee cups in.

I made the curtains from a patchwork of old French Ticking fabrics. There was just enough to put behind the chicken wire of my wall cupboard too.

I hid some of the alcove shelves behind another curtain.

An eclectic mix!

I shall hang the painting of the post box in there soon; appropriately enough, our kitchen was once the village Post Office!