Saturday, 30 June 2012

Harmless Fun, Corny or Classic?

Driving along this morning on my way to Rye, Listening to Radio2 when I heard Graham Norton play his 'I can't believe it's not better' weekly song. These songs always seem to divide the nation, some loving them others talking about "bleeding ears".

There was a line in today's selection that really made me laugh "I will not have gossip in this jungle".

It started me thinking about all the comedy/character songs that I heard as a child, the type of song that I don't think anyone makes anymore, am I wrong?

Are we too cool and sophisticated now, or have we just heard EVERYTHING?

Had to put these guys on not strictly a comedy song more of a sketch, but really funny.

Thursday, 28 June 2012

Look at These Pretties.

It was tres difficult to choose just one image for my ad' in Vintage Life Magazine, obviously the ones with a statue coming out of the model's head were a no go :) 

How do we miss those things? And me a professional something or other.

I'm sure Hazel the Features Editor will make the right choice from the selection I sent her. 

But really any picture of this adorable girl would be perfect.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

Garden Happiness

Well good morning my little butterbeans, it's now the official start of garden bliss. Yes, the greenhouse is now up and from today will be housing some darling little seeds.
Our lovely neighbour popped into view the new local attraction and brought with him some pepper plants, yeh Nick :) Can you see them in the corner?
The garden furniture is finished, after 4 coats of paint. But I have to say the paint has caused me some problems as it seems to be peeling off when even a litle bit of water gets on it, particularly bad on the table top. Can't understand that as I have actually used a 'garden' wood paint, go figure. Possibly it was in the preparation, but I did use an electric sander for the job.
Anyhoo problem solved as amongst my little stash of fabrics there was a piece of oil cloth, and it was exactly the right colour and just enough to cover the table.
We've got to be totally on the ball to keep it looking good, and will keep it covered when we're not using it, that way it should last for this year at least.

Our lovely roses which have been languishing on the floor amongst a lot of overgrown grass have been given a face lift and are looking very peachy indeed. This lovely rose is called anniversary and was given to us last year on our 10th wedding anniversary. 

I don't think this is a formal way of supporting roses, but I think it looks delightfully rustic and the supports are from our garden so are free.
I'm orf to my knitting group now, and will be back soon to show you some gorgeous images I have taken for an advert for this very blog, which has been kindly offered to me by Vintage Life magazine. They used some of my knitwear images last year and have given me a free advert in exchange. Jolly good I say.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

Norman Hartnell Showcases Big Hair.

You know dear reader don't you that I fly the flag for all things British, past and present. And feel very inspired and proud of our design heritage.

Because of this I have a fondness for dear old Norman Hartnell, who for some time was the favourite couturier of our Maj. 
Designing both her Wedding dress and her Coronation dress.
I bought the above black and white original photo of Norman from ebay. It's from the London Bureau of the United Press International (UK) and dates from 1966.

I'm totally loving the very big wiggy hair styles of this era. Surely due for a come back? But at the same time slightly amused by the  beribboned large hair pieces laid out ready for the salon's artistic director to work his magic.

My hair is super fine so I don't think I could ever carry this look off, but isn't it absolutely gorgeous on these fine gals.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Village Vintage Cuckfield

I'm super excited, as I've managed to secure a pitch at the prestigious Village Vintage event being held at Cuckfield recreation ground on Saturday July 7th.
This will be my first all vintage major event, I'm usually the one buying all the desirable must haves. 

The really friendly organisers Lucy and Darcy, are working hard to promote the event and seem dedicated to it's success.

A lovely day out browsing treasured finds and hand made items, hopefully enjoying the glorious sunshine and sipping tea or Champagne. Come along and see me and don't forget to spread the word it's an event not to be missed.

Monday, 18 June 2012

National Garden Scheme

It's a great idea, opening up private gardens to the public for a 'small' donation. We the public get to look at and enjoy beautiful gardens and hopefully come away with new ideas for our own patches. In return much needed funds are raised for worthwhile charities like Marie Curie Cancer Care, Macmillan and Help the Hospice.
When the scheme was founded back in 1927 it was only a shilling a head to gain entry, but our local gardens are charging £5.00, plus extra for tea and cake. It seems you can buy a ticket that will give you access to several gardens if they are all in the same village, I think that would be better value, and it would still feel as though you were doing your bit towards raising revenue. Children are usually free so that's good for families.
If you have the time it's a lovely thing to do, some of the gardens are truly amazing. There are over 3,700 open gardens in England and Wales, pop over to the website and find some near you.
This is me having a bit of a L'oreal moment underneath a fragrant 

Sunday, 17 June 2012

Good Things for the Weekend

Silver adds the glamour to these storage baskets and accessories.

Kilner jars add some specialness to salad nicoise.

ideas and images via.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

Regular readers can I tempt you/invite you to become a follower, I'd be terribly chuffed if you joined.

Wouldn't it Be Love-va-ley to Have Staff

One wouldn't call them servants of course, and one would be terribly nice to them, they could have a half day off every month, and all the crumpets they could possibly eat, buttered, naturally.

 If only this one had the money. But one can dream can't one?

 In the absence of lots of lovely little helpers, I have been getting on with the work myself, I call them projects so it makes them sound less like graft.

This little beauty of a greenhouse is grad-u-ally taking shape, not strictly my project though, Mr.S&P blames the rain for his lack of progress, mmmm, I'm not so sure. Doesn't look like we will be growing much for this season.

I'm defo in charge of garden furniture renovations, they seem to need sorting out every year which is a bit tedious given the small amount of time we usually use them. The chairs have been painted in a natural stone colour and the table and bench are going to be in 'Willow', it's a really nice 1930's green.

It's good stuff this paint, hopefully prolongs the life of the furniture. Which is just peachy because I'm especially fond of the bench as my Dad made it well over 25years ago, and he's no longer with us.

When I'm taking a break from the hard graft I can carry on with my 'leisure' project. He is taking shape now. 

It's strange how fair isle knitting has the capacity to make me feel nostalgic even though it was popular long before I was born.

Sunday, 10 June 2012

Recipes for Over Ripe Strawberries

British strawberries are coming into their own just now, and are half price at Morrisons and BOGOF at Waitrose.
But when you buy a lot they can sometimes 'go over' to quickly. The answer? roast them or make a sorbet.

Preheat oven to 150. Place two pounds washed and dried strawberries, hulled but left whole, in a single layer in a 9-by-13 inch baking dish.
Drizzle with 5 tablespoons of honey, and toss gently to coat.
Bake until syrup begins to thicken and strawberries turn deep red and shrink slightly, about 1 hour 45 mins.
Let cool and serve over ice cream, yoghurt, biscuits or pancakes. Syrup will continue to thicken as berries cool.

Great sorbet recipes can be found here at the wonderful Miss Stewart's site.

Saturday, 9 June 2012

Grammar Joke, Who'd of Thunk it?

Being honest, I had to read this a couple of times, but when the penny dropped it made me laugh out loud.

A Letter  to the Financial Times

Michael Skapinker refers to the use of double negatives. I am reminded of the linguistics professor addressing his class who said: "A double negative will convey a positive; a negative and a positive in conjunction will convey a negative; but two positives in conjunction will never convey a negative." Whereupon a voice from the back of the room piped up: "Yeah right."

Friday, 8 June 2012

Women of a Certain Age - What to Wear?

I think it gets very tricky after 50, fashion that is, well let's be honest most things do :)  Before that finding, trying and buying clothes felt quite instinctive. Now nothing too short, frilly, girly, overtly sexy and definitely NO LEATHER, for me anyway.

I think vintage/repro vintage maybe the answer, the new Prada Le Voyageur Summer collection would look great on just about any age. Very expensive obvs, but as a reference very inspiring.
The collection is big on natural fibres, dresses are made from stretch cotton poplin, and the prints themselves feature elements of stylish European cities, London, Venice, Milan and Paris. The bags are crocheted raffia, and the shoes also look to be mainly fabric too.

I'm pretty sure similar dress patterns could be found and some bright and breezy cotton fabrics would be most peachy, markets are good for these or of course ebay.

I've already got some Summer wedges that I purchased last Autumn in the 'Office' end of season sale, they're not as lush as the Prada ones but I really like them. Buying out of season can pay huge dividends, but there is an element of luck finding exactly the right thing in the right size.

They're in a lovely soft turquoise nubuck, are wonderfully comfortable (another concern after a certain age), and only set me back £15.50 including postage.

top image of Lucille and Peg found at

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

There is Loveliness in this World

And when I see it I normally covet it.
This was a huge canvas in what was probably (I didn't go in of course) a tres expensive interiors shop in Knightsbridge. Are you like me? Do you see things like this and think, I could do that if I had the time, it doesn't look that hard to paint.

And when I spied this I thought, how cool would it be to have an old fashoned ice cream seller at a big party with all my friends there.
What I do know to be a truth is that if all the world was like the inside of an Anthropologie store, it would be creative, calm, comfortable and soul enhancing. Ah me I love those shops.