Friday, January 23, 2009

Catching Up...

Firstly, THANK YOU, to everyone who entered my giveaway below - I was totally overwhelmed by the response it generated and was unaware that so many knew of my little ol' blogs existence! I've discovered so many more blogs through doing this too that I didn't know where out there. I am only sorry that I couldn't provide more prizes to share out, but sadly there has to be just one winner, which I have selected randomly from the hat. And she is...

Tina of 'Sweetina', well done to you! The above group of nostalgic lovelies will be on its way to you very soon.
A long awaited treat last week was disrupted somewhat when poor hubby came down with the bug that is doing the rounds...Sadly he was too unwell to venture out to the theatre that he had booked tickets for several weeks ago, for us and our girls. So the girlies and I headed for the bright lights on our own for an evening of sing-song! - The Bristol Hippodrome was showing 'Joseph and His Amazing Technicolour Dream Coat'.

The lead was played by Craig Chalmers, who did a fantastic job - in fact, the whole cast had been very well selected and all fitted their roles perfectly, each putting their heart and soul into their performances. It really was a feel-good musical with memorable songs telling the story from beginning to end.
Cameras weren't allowed in the theatre, so I've added this official photo from Google showing Joseph in that amazingly colourful coat!
Unintentionally I think, the patchwork coat design inspired the outfit for my latest rag doll that I am working on. It's in a somewhat more subdued colour scheme (!), but I've fashioned the mohair jacket from strips of vintage woollen scarves, as well as a patchwork skirt in toning colours from vintage cottons.

I had considered keeping her when she's finished for the V&H fair in May, so that I'm not rushed nearer the time. But its such a good feeling to finish a doll, as they take a long time to complete, that I just want to have them added to my shop as soon as I can...
I have managed to make some small pieces for the fair already, but I'll show those a lot nearer the time.
Over the last couple of weeks I have received two emails from different ladies asking if I have 'help' at home. (Sorry, I couldn't help but giggle a little.....if only!) I do hope that my blog posts don't come across as if I have a simple and perfect little life, with me sat at my sewing machine making frivolous things all day, with someone else doing all the unpleasant stuff in the background!

There are five of us living at the Stone House and I have to put my family and our home first. Hubby works from home too, so there are always cups of tea to brew throughout the day. And just like everyone else, I do all the cooking, cleaning, vacuuming, ironing, polishing, dusting, laundry, ironing, gardening, shopping etc...etc...during the week. I just choose not to mention all of that tedious malarkey on my blog! My sewing time has to fit around the household chores and bringing up the family.
Anyway, moving on...
I must admit that I also succumbed to the bug by last weekend, but wasn't going to let it stop me visiting an antiques fair on the Saturday! Talk about commitment!
I am glad that I did make the effort to go though and was pleased with the pretty things that I discovered...
The old French pink and cream lace skirt hem has already been used for the rag doll costume above.
And I can't wait to use the fine white cotton nightgown for a similar rag doll too.
These deliciously floppy millinery roses reminded me of the old painterly postcards that I love to collect. I've displayed them for now amongst my antique shoe collection.

Lots more sparkles found themselves snapped up!
I particularly liked this floral brooch, with its crystallised buds and hand tied posies.
This little china treasure is a tiny 4cm across - I'm amazed that the forget-me-not flowers have survived the years intact.

I was also on the lookout for some more 'special' vintage buttons for some handmade ideas I have that I want to try soon - thankfully, I wasn't disappointed.

I bought some beautiful silvered glass ones and small fairy-like glittering buttons.

I always love the ephemera stalls and came away with these charming Victorian cards.

And talking of cards, hubby and I have been organising a Golden Wedding Anniversary party for March, in our spare moments, for my in-laws. I would have loved to have made my own invitation cards, but as usual, time does not allow. I did however find a brilliant website where you can customise your invites to suit the occasion.
Our cream card ones fasten with gold organza ribbon bows and are printed inside in brown. If you are looking for classic invitations, then I would recommend this website - we received ours within a day of finalising our order!
I would finally just like to thank everyone for their kind feedback regarding my websites new look and to thank all of those who placed an order or two from the on-line catalogue...I spent three days wrapping, packing and driving parcels off to the post office, so purchases should all be with their new owners very soon.

Sorry this is a bit of a mishmash post, but I just wanted to catch-up with what's been going on here and to check-in after being away from my blog for a week - thanks for staying with me.
I now need to get back on my sewing machine again and get creating some more dolls and decorative adornments...and do the housework of course!! ;-))
Have a great day!
Niki x
PS: This is a message for Beverley in New Zealand in the hope that you will read this blog post! I have been replying to all of your emails, but I believe that you are not receiving them (have you checked your spam/junk files?)
Beverley is coming to stay in London soon and was asking about the best places for vintage shopping. I'm not sure that I can be of much help, as I haven't been to London since I moved away from Hertfordshire to the west country in 1985! Perhaps if anyone could help her, they could leave a message in my comments? Thanks so much! - Just hope that you read this Beverley, as I would not ignore emails!


  1. Love your purchases from the antiques fair.

    I am itching for a mooch round one soon.

    Love your dolls - and the brooches are wonderful


  2. Hello Niki
    I am so sorry I missed your giveaway.. my pooter was poorly for a while and I have lots to catch up with..
    Seeing all your new treasures.. I wish I could borrow your eyes ( and talent) just for a day... so that I could find these wonderful items that you unearth..
    It is always so lovely to visit your blog and shop to see your fantastic finds and creations.. rather like a virtual museum!
    I can't wait to see your stall at the fair.. it will shine brightly!!!
    Hope you are feeling much better now..
    With love
    Michele xx

  3. you are so talented, l wish l had an eye for what you find l must be looking in the wrong direction l will have to try harder when l go thrifting.
    Have a great weekend best wishes Pat

  4. What a beautiful collection you found at the fair. There is nothing I like better than mooching around car boot, jumble sales and antique fairs, Margaret

  5. Anonymous11:09 am

    Hi Niki!
    Ha! Ha! Loved the pics of the tea-towels and cleaning accoutremnets...Regarding Vintage shopping in London...Mmm...not as great as the rural areas due to "london" pricing and alot of repro stuff, but being a girl of the big smoke, my recommendations are; Portobello market (love it!!!), great vibe, real mix of Notting Hill and Westbourne Grove, oodles of stuff, antiques, vintage clothing (including the supermodel's fave ONE OF A KIND), bric-a-brac etc. You can chill out with a yummy cocktail and admire your purchases in one of the many great restaurants. As with any crowded area, just keep an eye on your bag and haggle with those traders! The Spreadeagle Junkshop in Greenwich is a wondrous emporium of glorious artefacts! Steer clear of the vintage "boutiques" in the upmarket department stores, basically a charity shop clock rendered remarkable by the fact it from the 60s and hence the £100 price tag!!!If you heart Cath Kidston, the best one is at Covent Garden. But, I think Portobello market is the one, it has charm, feel-good factor and swathes of stuff to delight. Good luck!

  6. Hi Niki,
    You did very well at the fair. I recognise the pretty floppy roses from the button stall, I'm glad you bought them because they look lovely among your goodies. I bought quite a lot of buttons, couldn't resist!
    Hen x

  7. Hi Niki, great to catch up. You've had lots going on. Sorry about the bug going around. I hope everyone is mending now. As always I love all the beautiful pictures! xo, suzy

  8. You have the most "delightful" pictures, sweetpea!! I adore looking at them.......

  9. lovely to visit such a beautiful- inspiring blog- i love it!!! ive ust started to set up my own called 'A mermaids purse' on blogger...isnt it fun.
    your home is fabulous! and like u i love collecting bits and bobs from vintage fairs and craft fairs...after all 'A Home Is Where The Heart is' and having collections and treasures is wonderful!
    x karen x

  10. Sorry the "bug" found your home, and hope everyone is well now. Looks like you did good at the Fair - I especially like the jewelry. Have a great weekend.

  11. Hello Niki - I am swooning over your eye candied post as usual! The millinery looks like it jumped right from the postcard! I recently purchased some silver and black Victorian glass buttons as well. =) I hope your hubby feels better soon. Two of my "babes" are home from school today (one made a remarkable recovery when I told her she could stay home! lol but as she wasn't up to snuff last evening, I thought it best anyhow).
    Have a lovely weekend! hugs xo

  12. What no butler? Shocking! Great flea market finds! You have such a good eye! Hope you're all bug free now!

  13. Hi Niki

    What a full post - lots to read and plenty to look at!! Perfect combination. Needless to say you found all sorts at the Fair, despite me going round a day earlier!!!

    Sue xx

  14. As always your pictures are lovely...I especially love the one with your shoe collection and those lovely have bought some lovely friend always says that housework makes you ugly...and its on a wooden plaque so it must be true... so drop the duster and have some chocolate!!!

  15. Hi Niki,
    I hope your husband is doing well.

    I loved the pictures of all of your "pretties". I loved the floral brooch. So sweet.

    You have such a good eye for beauty.

    Deanna :)

  16. Niki, I hope you and yours are feeling better now. Wow, you hit the jackpot at the antiques fair. You have some really beautiful treasures. I received your beautiful book today and I highly recommend it to anyone that loves beauty. It will be a fantastic treat for anyone for perhaps Valentines Day. You would not be sorry if you get Niki's book. You, Niki are a very, very talented lady and thank you so much for sharing your talent with us.
    Jean in Virginia

  17. Love the finds from the antique fair. Lovely x

  18. Anonymous2:04 pm

    Hi Niki, love the roses... well everything really. Looking forward to your next batch of goodies, my best wishes Julie.

  19. Fabulous finds... so many wonderful pictures to look at in this post.

    I really need to get motivated into visiting the fairs and boot sales to see what treasures i can find.

    Victoria xx

  20. Lots of lovely sparklies, I love sparklies!

  21. Anonymous9:58 pm

    Hi Niki, what an enormous amount of comments you received for giveaway! I am sorry I missed but with that many comments, my chances of winning would have slim! Your poor hubby, so sorry to hear he has caught the bug. I do hope he is feeling better now or at least very soon. Taking the girls to a musical sounds wonderful. I love musicals and have taken Georgia to several. Bye for now...

  22. Hi Niki... what a wonderful catching up post! Love all the pretty sparkly things. ;0)

    I chuckled when you were talking about not having having help... it sure would be nice wouldn't it?? Our blogs sometimes are just a little view into the madness of our lives so I think it is easy for people to think that we aren't doing the messy things of everyday. I have had people tell me that my house looks like children don't live there... oh believe me... I just don't show that part and hurry up and snap the photos right after I straighten! haha

    Have a wonderful week!

    xo Heather

  23. Hi Niki,I must admit I did wonder how you dusted all your amazing must take aaaaages and a lot of patience!! Love those sparkley brooches and that little china forget-me-knot pot is just beautiful. Hope the bugs departed now,sorry the hubs missed the show,It's coming here soon with the same chap playing Joseph.
    Have a lovely week x

  24. what lovely finds from the fair the buttons are gorgeous.
    Help with housework now that would be wonderful although I would probably be one of those that tidied before they came!!!

  25. Hi Niki - sorry to of not been in touch lately....been a bit busy - but I now have more time...looks like you have been busy too - i cant believe all the things you get hold of...your taste is exquisite!

    Have you had the lurgy! I have had a cough for about 4 weeks now - the only thing that southes it is gargling with salt water - just a tip hun - speak soon Love happy x

  26. Dear Niki, this is a lovely catch up post and it is just like reading a letter from an old pal! What lovely things in the photos, especially the gorgeous brooches and cards. Have a good week and I hope you remain bug free now into the Spring and Summer. Happy days. Denise

  27. Hello,
    What a beautiful post! So much to look at, I love it all Niki


Thank you for finding the time to visit me...
Niki xx