Sunday, 28 July 2013

Too Darn Hot

The weather has been fantastic lately hasn't it? But sometimes a leeeetle bit too hot for me. Puts me in mind of this routine by Ann Miller. Someone said she could tap faster than a machine gun, 500 taps a minute, wow.

I love her costume so outrageously glamorous and check out the face of the blonde in the hat. Well you would wouldn't you? Look like that I mean.

Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Liberty Window Displays Back in the Day

Hello dear reader, did you know Liberty have a wonderful craft blog? In truth it is really mostly about Liberty products and their shameless promotion of said products. Yes, yes, so far all very interesting but occasionally they come up with a little gem.

I absolutely adore this 1946 window display 'From Arsenic to old lace'. So of it's time, truly elegant even though they probably didn't have much in the way of stock, being just after the war and all.

And how sweet is this 1954 display? The column of fabric swathes has a welcome home message for Her Maj, who had just returned from Australia. Ah me those were the days, let's bring them back I say, sweet simplicity.

Monday, 15 July 2013

A Tale of Two Palaces - Part Two

So with our second palace visit the excitement levels went up just a touch. I booked the very reasonably priced tickets last February and we have waited patiently for the big day to arrive. Who knows if we might ever get the chance again to visit the gardens of Buckingham Palace?

The day itself flew past in a blur of chimney sweeps (yes I shook his hand), gorgeous food and drink (tiny portions and extortionate prices), royal warrant holders (I made a purchase see below) and bundles of music and uber British fashion catwalk shows. It was TREMENDOUS.

We didn't get tickets for the Gala in the evening, all sold out, still we watched it on the goggle box on Saturday night, good enough for me.

My RHS Hunter gardening shoes, purchased in the grounds of the Palace don't you know.


Saturday, 13 July 2013

A Tale of Two Palaces - Part One

The mister and I are trying to factor in some leisure time this Summer. At least the last five Summers have been mainly about finishing the house, you know getting jobs done, jobs that are sadly much easier to do when the weather is good. We're working on the garden now as you know, but planning some fun stuff as well.

Last weekend we had a very nice thrifty day out when we went to Eltham Palace, we combined the day with popping in to see my in-laws who live about 10 minutes away in Bromley.

Because our Free three month Art Fund Pass is valid until the end of July we were able to get in completely free of charge. I did spend in the shop though as it had some lovely things and I think it always 'does' to support places if you expect them to be there when you next want to visit.

The palace is a remarkable place not just because it's architecture straddles several centuries, but the way it manages to do so in such a seamless fashion. I do love the great hall but I adore the Art Deco parts of the house.

I am also very taken with a special resident who shared the house with Stephen and Virginia Courtauld, his name was Mah-Jong and was by all accounts quite the character.

The building is surrounded by a dreamy moat and has large gardens where you can take a picnic and laze under the mature trees as we did.

Our picnic was small but delicious, egg biryani, fresh strawberries, caramel waffle biscuits and lashings of Earl Grey and vanilla tea. 

No booze at all as it was a fair drive away, but we didn't miss it honestly.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Special Nivea Offer at Superdrug


Just a quickie, in case you luv-er-ly lot don't know about the great offer on at Superdrug. Hopefully all you thrifty followers have already signed up to their Beauty Card, collecting points for money off on future purchases.

Spend £10.00 or more on Nivea products and you get 100 bonus points, (which is basically £1.00). Plus you're entered into a competition to win holiday vouchers or Nivea goody bags. All the products I use in their range are also better than half price at the moment, so it's a win win offer. In store until July 30th. 

Tuesday, 9 July 2013

Not bad for Novice Gardeners

We are so pleased with our first proper season of food growing, it feels a little bit like magic. Buying the second hand greenhouse was the catalyst of course, without that we would have struggled to get things going.

2 courgette plants will probably produce enough for the two of us for sometime to come. We're trying to pick and eat them as quickly as they grow so we only eat the courgettes at their best, whilst they are small and tender.

I tried grating them the other evening, mixed with some low fat creme fraiche or sour cream, which is what we had left in the fridge from a previous meal, a small amount of Parmesan, smoked garlic and black pepper made for a tasty pasta sauce.
The spaghetti was dried but tasted smashing with the really fresh sauce and kept the price of the meal really low.  Although I think I put a little too much smoked garlic in, good job we both ate the same thing.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

High End Vintage Still Buoyant

The Kerry Taylor auction house in Bermondsey doesn't enjoy such a high profile as the big London auction houses but it still attracts some cracking lots. I have yet to get myself over there to take a squiz but happily get sent their newsletter so I can 'virtually' drool over the beautiful garments.

The first image shows a sensational Alexander McQueen for Givenchy, kimono ensemble from their most recent auction, which had an estimate of £5-8000 but sold for an eye watering £31,200, going to a major overseas museum.  

The second image is of an exquisite Chanel Summer cocktail dress 1956 (a great vintage year if I may say so). The cautious estimate was £1000-£2000 but it absolutely flew and the hammer fell at  £20,400.

If you can spare the time visiting an auction house on one of the viewing days can be great fun, especially when you have a passion for the items on sale. I must try and make their next sale, although it would be perilous to register to bid, like Oscar Wilde I can resist anything but temptation.

The next date for Vintage Fashion and Textiles is October 15th 2013.

Monday, 1 July 2013

Hercule Poiret at Greenway

This little titbit is hot off the press.

Filming of a new Hercule Poiret episode has been taking place at Agatha's beloved Summer house Greenway.

I couldn't possibly tell you how I know but I can't wait to see it on the gogglebox, can you?