26 May 2009

French Market comes to town.


Hope you all had a great weekend and Bank holiday if you where lucky enough to get one. The sun shone for most of it, and our French neighbors ( St Malo is just a short trip from Jersey on the boat) bought over a collection of french wares and food, such as french sausages, pastries and tarts, soaps and natural sea sponges, kitchen wares, and cashmere jumpers, for us to feast our eyes and bellies on. The smell crepes and other foodie smells wafted down the streets of st. Helier, always very popular with the locals who look forward to these french markets running during the summer months. We settled for some french pastries filed with strawberry jam. Umm very nice.  The French Market will be back in July to tempt us again.

21 May 2009

Wooden heart.

Hearts made of drift wood and twigs are very popular at the moment for creating a beach or cottage feel in the home. While at the grand designs Live show recently I spotted some really great drift wood items by Box Brownie Trading, I almost bought some but as we traveled over by plane, was limited on what I could carry back with home.
On a recent trip around the lanes where I live (in an effort to loose some extra unwanted pounds) the twigs on the ground reminded me of these beautiful hearts, and as we walked around I decided to collect some. This is now the beginnings of my next craft project

For this project you will need.
  • One or two walks around some nice country lanes/parks.
  • A pile of thinnish dry twigs.
  • Glue suitable for wood, I used Evo-stick wood adhesive.
  • A small saw to cut the twigs into 3" lenghts, or there abouts.
  • A heart template to follow
  • And plenty of patience as this is a slow process.
Once you have your pile of twigs, draw a heart template on a pieces of paper, this is so you can follow the shape around with the twigs.
Place your first layer on the template to see how it looks, if you are happy with this, start to glue the next layer on top to join the twigs together, this is a really slow process unless you have really fast drying glue, and can be done over a few days.
Build up the layers until you have the desired effect. This is still work in progress but you get the general idea.
Happy heart making!

19 May 2009

Magazine of the Month.

I have to confess that monthly homes magazines are a bit of a weakness for me, and so many to choose from. Amongst my favourite's are BBC Good homes (hopefully will be staying on our shelves for many more years to come) Ideal Home, Country Living, Inside out when I can get my hands on it (an Aussie magazine) and of course Living etc, just to name a few.
Every month from now on I will choosing one magazine and blogging about it, in a new section of my blog called Magazine of the Month.
To kick stat this new section I am diving into Living etc, the June edition, and this month it is almost like it was written just for me! A whole 50 ideas for you walls ranging from giant statement circles to 3-D Tromp L'oeil wallpaper, (you may remember I did a section on wall coverings not long back) Pop-art mosaics for ya bathroom, which I think has a bit of an art deco feel about it. If you are thinking of up dating your walls, than this issue is for you.
In the modern lifestyle section I'm loving the look of photographer Pail Massy's home, and his
use of every day items such as a bin and a wooden crate box as side tables which work so well in his home.
If like me you have been sucked into the whole make do and mend thinking, then get your Tapestry needles at the ready as cross stitch is the next big Craft revival, new kits brought to you by Emily Peacock will have you creating your very own heirlooms to pass on to future generations.
Looking for a new cooker? then check out the selection of range cookers, with something for all, from retro to the classic timeless Aga, you'll be spoilt for choice.
Well that's my round up of Living etc, oh except to mention that the subscription offer this month is great if you are needing some new skin care products, I'm very tempted to subscribe.

If you have some favourite magazines that you think are worth a mention, feel free to post a comment at the bottom.

Girls tool kits.

Having recently taken up the make do and mend mantra of late I have found myself trying to prise the tool box off of my Husband. Its like some kind of sacred box that females have to go through an interrogation process before being aloud to handle these precious items, " what are you doing with it, do you know how to use this hammer/screwdriver/tape measure" Then when you do get to use them, said Husband hangs around like a bad smell, giving directions on how to use them! Well enough I am on the hunt for a tool box of my own, and to make it clear that its MINE I think I'll get one in pink with matching accessories. I'm loving this one above.

17 May 2009

Ikea curtain cut off's.

Ikea curtains always come really long in length which is great for getting just the required drop for your windows, just measure cut of excess, iron on hem and bobs your uncle, perfect. But what do you do with the material left over? Well how about turning it into some extra pillows for your bed? That's just what I did in my bedroom, ans I think it looks great!

If you are not sure what to do I have thrown together this little how to, below to give you a general idea of how to make a simple pillow slip. Hope you can see that, need to figure our how to make a pdf down load for you all.

Any questions feel free to leave a comment below this post, or even share you own ideas with us all.

15 May 2009

My Book arrived.

I received my new book this week, which I ordered while at the Grand Designs Live show,
Kevin McCloud's Colour Now: An Expert Guide to Choosing Colours for Your Home. If you are a fan of Fired Earth paint colours then chances are you will love this book, as all colours used in the book match the 120 paint colours chosen by Kevin and produced by Fired Earth. Fired Earth colours have a subtleness about them, that's like listening to music but with sound turned low rather than played full blast, or a well cut piece of clothing that make the wearer look simple amazing.
As you flick through the pages of this book, its almost like the colours take you on a history lesson, recreating a place in time, or a memeory of worn leather, or damp moss and slate stone. A beautiful example of the power, and effect colour can have on us.

14 May 2009

Garden chairs spruce up

You may remember at the beginning of the week that I had snapped up these stripy chairs for the garden, but where in need of a little first aid, well in between the rainy days this week I have managed to get one finished, and I have to say I'm very impressed with how it has turned out.

Here's my first aid for garden chairs.

You will need:
Fine Sand paper.
Paint brush.
Wood stain suitable for garden chairs. I used B&Qs Quick drying wood stain in oak.
Damp cloth.
1. If you can, remove the seating fabric and wash. The seating section on these chairs just slid out, but had to be hand washed as the sides had thin rods stitched in to hold the seating in place.
2. Sand the chairs all over ready to receive the stain, follow the instructions given on the product that you choose to stain the wood, these vary from a light sand, to removing as much old stain as possible.
3. Once sanded down, wipe over with a damp cloth to remove dust.
4. If you notice any splitting of the wood like I had on one of the arms, repair using glue suitable for wood, you want one that drys clear. To hold the area in place while it drys, wrap string or tape around. leave over night to dry thoroughly.
5. Once everything is dry, stain the sanded wood with a coat of wood stain. A thin coat is better then a thick coat, you can always had more coats if needed, but I found that one coat is enough.
6. Replace the seating and there you have it, as good as new!
A quick tip for keeping your brushes as good as new, after cleaning, massage fabric conditioner into the bristles for a few minutes to keep them in tip top condition.

10 May 2009

Want to be a winner?

If you like all things bright, funky and colourful then www.hunkydoryhome.co.uk is well worth a visit. Here you will find a collection of quirky hand made home accessories that are sure to brighten up any room in the home, and that's not all, up for grabs is a bag load of goodies when you follow them on Twitter, between now and the 15th of May.
Personally I'm loving the retro lampshades, but if shabby chic is your thing, then there is a pretty selection to tempt you, as well as cushions, kitchen accessories, wall art,clocks and something for the kids.
"Who's behind this site?" I here you cry, well its Alison Ellerbrook who launched hunkydory home in 2005, and leads a team of designers and makers to bring you these hand made items for your home.
Check out the site for more info, and don't forget to follow them on twitter to be in for a chance of a goodies bag.

First Aid for Garden Chairs.

Yes folks I have been at the charity shop again, and this time got myself some great chairs for the garden, I just love stripes in these colours, and a real bargain at just £10 for the pair. with not too much wrong with them that a bit of DIY first aid wont sort out, I set about giving them the once over with a bit of sanding paper and then a damp cloth to remove the dust.
As you can see in the photo below, a splinter of wood on the arm needed a quick repair to stop it getting any worse. With some glue suitable for wood I re stuck it down and wrapped a bandage in the form of some sellotape around until it had stuck. Works really well I have to say!
Next job is to get some wood stain to bring back the colour in the wood, so off to the DIY store Monday morning to get that sorted, check back later on in the week to see how they scrub up.

5 May 2009


If like me you enjoy nothing more than a good homes show, then you will love the new look of UK TV style programme, coming to you under the new name of Home, theres ' no place like it! Packed full of inspirational ideas for the home, and helping celebrities such as Brendon Cole (Strictly Dancing) look for the perfect pad to live, with Gaby Roslin ( not with Gaby, she is just helping him), and Mark Durden-Smith trying to get some of Britain most cluttered homes under control in Gutted, then this is sure to be at the top of the list of programmes to watch. Coming to you from Thursday 30th of April at 9pm on sky and Virgin Media (yes I know I'm late, I was in London catching the Grand Designs Live show) and kicking off with Gaby and Celebrity homes, followed by Gutted on Mondays at 10am with Mark Durden-Smith.

Home will be packed full of stylish and motivating programming that shows viewers how to enjoy and maximise their space, both inside and out.
Also showing will be the US programme Extreme make over Home edition, along side other favourites such as DIY SOS, Escape to the Country, and ground force. Put the dates in your diary so you wont forget!
All photos curiosity of Home (UKTV)

Grand Designs Live Show.

Last week we flew over to the UK to visit the Grand Designs Live show at the Excel centre on the London dock lands. Having booked it last year for some reason I thought it was at Earls court, so on Sunday evening before flying over, I had to check out which trains to catch to get us to the other side of London. Well needless to say we did make it in one piece, and as it turned out the hotel we booked was just across the road from the Excel, how handy was that, just roll out of bed and pop over! I managed to get a few photos as we went around, so here they are.

Above, plant pots painted in the colours selected by Kevin Mccloud, for Fired Earth, 120 all together. I love these colours, they have a softness about them, but still vibrant.

lamp shades snapped in the interiors section, florals go big and bold.

Building with natural materials using in this instance oak timber frames.

These Eco hubs age great, ideal for holiday homes, and 50 of them are being whisked up to the Lake District very soon, so keep your eyes peeled.
Unfortunately I missed the signing by Kevin Mccloud, of his new book Colour Now, but I made sure I got my order in, so it should be with me very soon! But you can get one by clicking below, and its cheaper!

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