Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Ruby Shoesdays

I have taken on Caroline's Ruby Shoesdays challenge, basically to wear red shoes on a Tuesday. I didn't get chance to wear any today as I had a wardrobe crisis, all my red clothes have been worn and were due for washing today (they have now been washed and are hanging out to dry) and I couldn't work out an outfit from what was left. 

I did however buy a new pair of red shoes yesterday, they were from M&S I only went in to buy some tights!

You can see more of my red shoes and those of others taking part on the Flickr group

Friday, 26 March 2010


This is our lovely new phone. It is a reproduction of the classic 1970s Trimphone. You can buy these phones from Bloomsbury Store, we got ours in a wonderful gift shop in town, we wanted to buy one there to support our local shops, and it turned out to be cheaper than buying it online.

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Weekend Crafting

I love getting up first thing and going to my craft room. I love sitting there surround by all my craft books, fabrics, yarns, and bits and pieces with the sun coming through the window and a cup of coffee. I have plan anything in particular, but just make something that I am inspired to make in that moment.

This Saturday I picked up my Bramley Hedge book and saw a pattern for a toy mouse that goes with one of the toy mice, it is very small. It is made of felt and although small, it wasn't too tricky to make. Mine however turned out more like a very small dog, it just doesn't look like a mouse, I think it is the ears. I dressed it in a little skirt and shawl with a flower by its ear. 

On Saturday afternoon I started to make a suffolk puff clown, from a pattern of my mum's that was published in the 1980s. I cut out all the circles, but that was all. On Sunday morning I started to make the puffs and managed to finish the whole clown by mid day in time to watch the Grand Prix (as a Jarno Trulli fan it was rather a painful experience, last was not great, but Lotus did manage to finish their first race with both cars which was quite an achievement).

I am going to make some more clowns as presents for friends that are having babies. One of my friends had a little girl this weekend, so I have got my knitting needles out and started one of my favourite baby jumpers, it is a Debbie Bliss pattern that I have changed slightly, it is so simple making it quick to make and also something that people want to put their babies in.

I had meant to finish the Cath Kidston bag I made last weekend, but never got round to it, perhaps I will get time after work one night this week. 

Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Mid Century Modern Shopping

It was a lovely spring day on Sunday for our trip to Dulwich for the Midcentury Modern show. There were many lovely things to be tempted by and enjoy looking at.

I bought an interesting collection of new and old items.

People will always need plates tea towels

I bought this lovely Jenny Duff coaster for my craft room. It took me ages to choose a colour, I picked yellow as it felt so spring like.

Michelle Mason organic cotton tea towels.

Some industrial objects from Metroretro, a bobbin and a dye bottle from textile factories.

A Fiesta Ware jug.

We had a lovely day out and were very pleased with our purchases. I have now had a clear out of all the horrible old tea towels to make way for my lovely new ones.

Saturday, 20 March 2010

Spare Bedroom

My aim for this room is to make a comfortable spare bedroom for guests and a useful space the rest of the time with plenty of bookshelves and storage. I planned to make it bright and cheerful by using my retro 1960s and 1970s fabrics and ceramics to add some colour. I want to keep the costs low and reuse and recycle items rather than buying new ones. 

The walls were painted lilac and looked very tatty, with many holes from shelving and even more from taking the curtain pole down. I filled all the holes and painted the room white. I bought one tub of paint, which wasn't quite enough but thanks to an old tin in the garage I managed to get the second coat finished. It is now a lovely bright clean room, and the white works well with the dark wood work.

As well as being the spare bedroom this room provides a home for a lot of my books. I have reused some bookcases we already had that I was planning on getting rid of. They are cheap pine bookcases that all match, I didn't like the pine so have painted them in white gloss paint. I am very plased with the results. I have arranged all the paperbacks on the shelves in almost rainbow colour order. The room looks really cheerful now. I got the inspiration for this from the recent copy of Elle Decoration (white shelves with brightly coloured books and objects) and the Laundromat Cafe in Copenhagen (see picture below). I am very happy that the bookcases fitted so well as it has saved a lot of money and saved me the trouble of having to get rid of the bookcases. 

For more interest I have put some brightly coloured collectables on the top shelves, colour co-ordinated with the books of course! These are mainly pieces of 1960s and 1970s pottery from makers such as Midwinter, Carlton Ware, and Portmerion. I also have lots of retro fabrics, mostly charity shop purchases of bedding that can be cut up and made into other things. I have made two large fabric frames to show off some of the fabric, these are hanging above the bed.

I have made some curtains to fit inside the window opening. They dont take up any extra wallspace, but allow for privacy. I have some bedding that I wont cut up that can be used on the bed, at some point I will make a patchwork quilt from scraps. 

To save more money have borrowed a bed from my parents. It is high enough that I can put storage boxes underneath to keep spare bedding and other lesser used items. We already have lots of things stored in plastic crates, these crates fit under the bed very nicely. 

I have been able to fit my basket chair just inside the door and my plastic cabinet by the bed. We have a fantastic coat rack that will eventually go on the wall and provide a hanging space for guests.

I love this room, I am so pleased with how it has turned out, especially as I did it all myself.

Friday, 19 March 2010

Mid Century Modern

We are going to the Mid Century Modern show at Dulwich College at the weekend. I am really excited, we went last year and bought some lovely things including my Penguin Donkey. We don't have quite as much spending money this year, but I hope to buy a couple of nice pieces. I am looking for something craft related, perhaps a book, old Penguin books, some scandinavian ceramics, and a chair for our bedroom. I must come home with something though, even if it isn't on my list.

We were really impressed with the quality last year, it is a very well organised event, all the mid century items are wonderful, but we also loved the section devoted to new design and designers, we were particularly taken with Zoe Murphy and would love to have a piece of her furniture.

I will report back next week and let you know what I came home with.

Tuesday, 16 March 2010

Sexy Librarian

I have just ordered this pattern transfer from Sublime Stitching As a crafty person and library assistant I couldn't resist!
I think it will make most sense to stitch a sexy librarian book bag, any other ideas?


I love vintage Rosti melamine. At the moment I am working on my collection of egg cups. I am trying to get examples of all the colours, I have recently added two more, red and purple.

Classic Modern have some lovely pictures of these egg cups.

My collection isn't quite as impressive, but these egg cups don't turn up very often.

I have a lovely collection of Rosti mixing bowls and spoons as well. I look out for Rosti in charity shops and antiques fairs, a large part of my collection came from the Danish Homestore in Nottingham, I used to live opposite this wonderful shop and could see all the lovely Danish furniture from our windows, it was like having an extra living room.

Monday, 15 March 2010

Shoe Tidy

I have been having great fun making things for the house. We had lots of trouble with shoes in the hallway so I have made a shoe tidy to hang on the wall. We did look at buying a shoe cabinet from IKEA, although some of them are very shallow they would still have taken up quite a lot of space in the hallway as it is quite narrow. The fabric tidy hanging on the wall isn't too intrusive.

I had a lovely piece of stripy fabric in white, purple, green and grey, is a good furnishing fabric and should take the wear and tear of being used for shoes, unfortunately I didn't have enough to make the whole tidy, but then it was just a remnant from a charity shop. I used this fabric for the pockets and found a piece in purple, from my stash, to use as the backing, this fabric isn't as hard wearing, but should do the job, my stash of purple fabric is finally getting some use.

 I had enough black bias binding left over from another project and had some thread in the right colour. I already had some dowel from when I was planning to make a blind. The only thing I needed to buy was some hooks to attach it to the wall. To finish the shoe tidy off I made a casing for the dowel from the stripy fabric and a lavender heart to make it smell nice, in case we have any smelly shoes!

The pattern for the shoe hanging came from Sew and Stow by Betty Oppenheimer. I found the pattern easy to follow and it worked out as it should have. This book has a lovely selection of useful items, the fabrics they have been made in are so pretty I love looking at the pictures. There are useful tips about how to customise the patterns to make items that exactly fit your needs. The only problem I have with this book is that all the measurements are in inches and I am much happier in metric!

I have also make a lampshade in the same stripy fabric, I bought a cheap lampshade and used double sided tape to stick the fabric on, it is holding up OK so far.

Sunday, 14 March 2010

Broadband Update

As I sit here in my lovely sunny craft room I am very pleased to say we will be getting broadband by the end of Monday!

The new router arrived yesterday and made us both very happy.

I have a number of posts I want to write so will be busy this week.

Friday, 12 March 2010

Me Want!

I love these little mice that have their own matchbox beds. I really want to have one, and might have to treat myself. I do keep thinking that I should try to make something similar myself first as they are quite expensive.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Must Have!

I must have one of the gorgeous Hannah Turner owls. I love the little bird of hers that I have already. The shapes, pattern designs and colours all work really well together on all her owls, but I like the expression of the blue ones best.
They look great as a family, but I would choose just to have a baby one to go with my other birdy items.

Monday, 8 March 2010

No Broadband

Sorry for the lack of posts. We have been without broadband since January 20th, it is taking a very long time for the new company to set us up.

It is even more frustrating as I have been really busy with the new house and have made quite a few things that I wanted to write about. I also I wanted to show the progress on our house, from piles of boxes to co-ordinated rooms.

My husband has been working non-stop since Christmas so it would have been nice to spend all this free time I have had building up my Folksy shop again and getting back into blogging and forums. Hopefully I will be back again soon.