Thursday 29 November 2007

News in Brief

This week I have been making these

(to take to my craft stall in Marlborough)

Met a friend here

and enjoyed this

and thrifted these:

(shopping in Cirencester)

Oh, the pink teapot...

I couldn't resist the pink teapot - I just love it! (can you blame me?)

Sunday 25 November 2007

Pipped to the Post

Hello and a good Sunday evening to you. Hope you have had a great weekend. I was helping out at my local Church Bazaar yesterday which was good fun. Sadly not much there to be thrifted, then a meal with family and friends in the evening. Today I've been flopped out on the settee most of the day - bit of an indulgence but very nice! Looking forward to Cranford at 9pm, annoyingly I missed the first episode last week, just completely forgot about it.

Thanks to all the new visitors to my blog over the last few days, I will be replying to your comments shortly.

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about a visit to Marlborough. This is part 2 of that day when I decided to go into Pewsey as well. It’s much smaller than Marlborough but does have a couple of charity shops.
The first is a fund-raising committee shop for the Pewsey Carnival, and it’s always overflowing with stuff. I found this lovely big mirror, which someone had kindly already painted white for me (I added the flowers).

They didn’t have any fabrics, they always pass them on to the hospice shop, they told me. In the hospice shop there were no fabrics out but when I asked they brought out this huge piece of Laura Ashley fabric. It’s a lightweight cotton so didn’t feel that big but when I got home I found there were over 7 yards! I think this will be great for using as a lining or in patchwork. I also bought this marmalade jar girl because she was so cute.

Lastly I went into the haberdashery shop which doubles as the bric-a-brac shop through a connecting door - it’s quite odd really. Amongst the usual bric-a-brac there were piles of fabric offcuts, sewing books, old patterns and bags of trimmings. Disappointing though, after a good old rummage I only found this fabric and some trimmings.

On the way home I saw a sign for a garden centre which I hadn’t noticed before so decided to go and take a look. After driving for what seemed like ages, I nearly gave up, I found it miles out in the middle of nowhere. Next to the garden centre there were some shop units and an antique shop selling lovely brocante-style treasures.

After a good look around I had a chat with the owner and asked if she had any vintage fabrics.

“Oh I had loads until a couple of weeks ago, then Cath Kidston came in and bought them all”


It’s funny, I hadn’t imagined Cath Kidston as going to little out-of-the way places looking for treasures, not now that she’s made her fortune anyway. But thinking about it, that’s how she started and why would she have stopped now. Apparently she has friends in the area and that’s how she knew about this place.
Anyway, whilst I stood there feeling miffed that Cath had bought ALL the fabric (she might have left a little bit for the rest of us) the lady went to a drawer and found some pieces tucked away she had forgotten about.
So I got these (Cath’s rejects – not wonderful but I had to come away with something!):

But I’d love to know what CK went away with.
I gave the nice lady my phone number and she kindly said she’d look out for more fabric and phone me when she had some. And one thing’s for sure, I won’t be telling Cath Kidston!

Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday 21 November 2007

Christmas come early!

I was very lucky recently to win a giveaway hosted by Michele of Cowboys and Custard. I love the idea of giveaways and have entered many, so I was thrilled to have won this one. Frustratingly the postman delivered the parcel on Monday afternoon when I was out, so I made a trip to the sorting office on Tuesday morning - I was there at 6am prompt!
I barely made it through the door before starting to open the parcel - then I remembered - Photos! So I carefully packaged it up again (well, partly) so that I could share my excitement (and a couple of surprises) with you.
Inside the parcel was this very stylish package (wrapped much more neatly originally!). The first surpise was that Michele had used vintage wallpaper to wrap the outer parcel, which only became apparent when unwrapped. You can see that in the background of the picture and I have saved it to use in some crafting.

Inside was surprise 2 - this box - from a vintage children's game.

And inside the box, beautiful tiny vintage Christmas ornaments, a vintage French Christmas card and three of Michele's handmade Christmas badge cards which are lovely.

Just look at that brush tree...and the snowball ornament...and the cracker...and the stars... - I love it all!
Everything fitted perfectly inside the box. I've kept them inside the box for now so that every now and again I can open the box to handle the contents and get all nostalgic. This was a wonderful giveaway, thank you very much Michele!
p.s. If you haven't visited Michele's blog already, you must do so (see link at top of post) - you won't be disappointed!

Saturday 17 November 2007

From the Inside

Thought I'd show what I've been doing lately (as opposed to what I should have been doing!)I bought some glass jars in a charity shop recently. I wanted to decorate them in some way as I didn't want the contents to be visible. I wanted fast results and decided on paper, but rather than decorate on the outside I chose to decorate from the inside.
For these two I used a wallpaper border cut to size. It was so simple, I just rolled the paper and slipped it into the jar, then spread it out into place, a strip of sticky tape inside secured the paper and will stop it curling up again. Of course, jars with straight sides are best for this. Some ribbon tied around the neck of the jar finished them off. They can be kept simple or more decorative as this pink one. I used a pretty scrapbooking paper here, and some ribbon, lace, flowers and beads to decorate.

On a roll now, I went hunting in the kitchen for some empty jars but only found 2 (unfortunately the recycling collection had been the day before).

As these had rather ugly lids I made some matching paper covers. I used a decorative punch to give a lace effect edge, but a pinked edge would look good too.

The good thing with decorating them this way is that you can easily change the design as nothing is glued on. You could make some to match your decor using left-over wallpaper, or use Christmas paper and fill them with treats as a gift. I wouldn't recommend using them for food storage unless the items are wrapped, e.g. sweets or stock cubes, as it could get rather messy.
I was quite pleased with the results. Now - where am I going to put them?

Well, this one can go here...

These 2 can go here...

And these will look just right here.

Ok, what shall I do now? (Something I should be doing I think!)

Wednesday 14 November 2007

Flying Visit

I shouldn't really be here right now, but I just couldn't help myself!
Just time for a quick Corner of my Home:
Ok, so this one too:
Well, just one more, but that really is it then.

Really must dash now, see you soon, Bye!

Sunday 11 November 2007

Nothing like being prepared

Way back in September I remember thinking to myself that I must make a start on my Christmas stock (I have a small unit in a Craft Centre in Marlborough). Now that it's almost midway through November I have finally got around to it! I managed to put together quite a reasonable selection this week.

Friday afternoon I took myself off to Marlborough and was pleasantly surprised to find my shelves rather depleted. After a re-stock they looked a bit better.

I'm not entirely happy with the way my shelves look, not "shabby" enough but there are limits on what I can do regarding display. I can change the backdrop on my section, it's rather dark, but I can't do anything with the wooden shelves.
That price tag at the top of the picture sadly is not one of mine!

The craft centre is in a redundant Church which is really pretty to visit in itself, it also has a coffee shop.

Afterwards I had time for some thrifting. There are only three charity shops in Marlborough, so it doesn't take too long. The first two are local hospices and quite sanitised. My favourite is the Thrifty Orange where they are not so fussy about what they put out.
But Oh No - what's this?

Oh well, one last chance for a visit. I had a rather embarrasing experience though, as at the entrance I spied a small old wooden handled spade propped againt the window. No price so I picked it up and went inside to enquire.
"Oh - that's not for sale, it's that man's for his dogs"
I had picked up someone's pooper-scooper - did I feel just a little bit silly? Not deterred I went in for a rummage. There were quite a few people inside, sitting around a table laid out with crisps and cakes having a party. I heard the shop lady say to the man -
"Oh, someone just tried to buy your shovel - ha ha!"
My rummage only yielded a book and a fabric remnant, so I went to pay.
At the back of the till I spied an old photograph album and some loose photos, from around the 20s I would have guessed. I asked if they were for sale and the lady started to tell me that they had come in with some donations and she thought they had been left there by accident. She started to hand them to me when another woman came up and asked to have a look. They seemed to know each other and before I knew it she said
"Oh I'll buy them"
"Well, I would have bought them" I said. She didn't even look at me, just said
"Oh Sorry"
in a very off-hand way, and the deal was done. I wish I'd stood up for myself, but it felt a bit clique-ey in there and I don't like to make a fuss, so I paid for my purchases and left.
But I won't be going back there again - ha ha!

I had a bit of time left to check out the Antiques Centre which is in a disused chapel. It's more antique than flea-market but sometimes I can find a bargain there.

There's also a lovely "shabby chic" shop called the Cat's Whisker's which has lots of vintage and vintage-style goodies. Need quite a big wallet here, but there is a really good selection of vintage quilts and eiderdowns.

There are lots of pretty gift/home shops in the town, and a Laura Ashley Home. It's worth a visit if you are in the area. Here's what I came home with.
A french print of some delightful Crinoline ladies, the Oxford Book of Birds, some cutlery and knife rests, a tiny Victorian teacup and saucer, some china roses and a fabric remnant.

I love the print - it is exquisitely detailed.

The book is full of beautiful colour plates (I might put this in Mr. Bloom's christmas stocking, he kind of likes birds).

Well I'd better get off now and do what I'm supposed to be doing. Have a good week!

Thursday 8 November 2007

Good Timing

Back in the summer, Mr. Bloom and I spent a few days in Shropshire. There are some lovely small towns in that area and much of the time, needless to say, was spent in antique and charity shops. I also managed to find a car boot sale and two flea markets, and we were only up there for 3 days! The car was quite full by the time we left.

One of my purchases was a clock for Mr. Bloom for his birthday. He chose it himself, as he is very particular in his taste. We had it packed carefully and put it in the car with our (my!) other purchases. When we got home we carefully unloaded the car and brought everything inside. As I was excitedly rummaging through my treasures, one of the bags slowly tipped over and fell on the floor. I heard a sort of tinkling noise and my heart sank. I picked up the bag – it was the clock which had fallen onto its face and the glass broke into 4 pieces.
Mr. Bloom was very philosophical about it, I wanted to cry.

It is standing in our front room. Mr. Bloom winds it up every few days and it has a lovely ticking sound, but each time I look at it a wave of guilt washes over me. Instead of “tick-tock” I hear “you-broke-me-you-broke-me”.

This week we popped out to a bric-a-brac shop that I had noticed opened up at the weekend. Though I was disappointed with their stock, I did manage to find this lovely set of 6 soup bowls for 35p each.

They are in perfect condition and will complement my dinner plates really well.
They have pretty mottled pattern when you look close up.

But the real find of the day was the clock you can see in the corner of the picture. Not something I would have bought normally but the glass front was exactly the same size as the one I’d broken! I really couldn’t believe my luck and the price was right too - £3.

So now Mr. Bloom’s clock is restored and I can look at it without remorse.

I am sure it is ticking a lot more happily too – and surrounded by all that lace and flowery frippery, how could it not be happy?

I’d like to say Thank You to everyone who has commented on my posts so far. I’ve appreciated them very much and also enjoyed looking at your blogs too, which have gone into my favourites list. I’m not sure if I should be replying to each one individually, I’ll have to look up on blog-etiquette, but for now I’ll thank you all here.

Sunday 4 November 2007

Rose Coloured Glass

My first post looks a bit lonely on it's own, so I'm keen to add another one to make me look less like a novice blogger. Thank you Clare of Vintage Home for your comment, it's heartening to know that I have had at least one visitor!

I don’t specifically collect pink glass, but have picked up the odd piece here and there that I found pretty. I had them dotted around all over the house but they never looked quite right wherever they were and didn’t really go with anything else. Recently I decided I would display them all together and what a difference it made. Individually they were nothing special but placed together I think they look rather attractive. I have grouped them on a shelf in my bedroom.

In addition to those on the shelf I have a few other pieces dotted around the bedroom.

I also have a cute set of 5 small bowls – these are used to serve nibbles when we have guests, I keep these in the kitchen.

My most recent find was this dressing table set - I think there were probably more pieces originally in the set. It was a bargain £1 at the car boot sale.
This is displayed guess where? - in our bedroom.

Of course, if anyone asks me whether I collect anything I always say that I don't. I find that if you admit to collecting anything, suddenly that's all you ever get for birthdays and Christmas and it can get a bit out of hand. I don't mean to sound ungrateful but do you know what I mean?
So that's my 'not-collection' of pink glass - I'll keep you updated if I find any more pieces to add to it!

Friday 2 November 2007

New Month, New Blog

This feels a bit strange, writing to no-one about nothing in particular. I've been reading blogs for about a year now and just loving them. I've been planning to start this blog for a long while, I just haven't plucked up the courage. I guess it may sound a little stilted to begin with, until I get into the swing of things and find my 'style'.

Just a little about me - I live in Wiltshire in the UK with my partner (Mr. Bloom) - just the two of us in our 1930s semi in town. I love vintage things, thrifting and crafting and I spend my spare time filling my home with vintage and handmade things. That’s mainly what my blog will be about.

Well, I’m glad that's done...hope someone finds it!!!