Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Elderflowers, Bunnies and Morticias Dressing Screen!

A Post of bits'n bobs today!
The first of the climbing roses I planted only a few weeks ago is blooming its little socks off. I hadn't expected very much from them this first year, I thought it would take a while for them to scramble up the poles of the pergola. So I am pleased - so pretty and white!
The garden is doing so well with all this lovely weather!

It was Car Boot Sale day yesterday - lots and lots of finds! I spent £25 - which is a fortune for me! But lots of goodies - --

Some wonderful old music - Christopher Robin songs - remember him from Winnie the Pooh, and an old newspaper, I like to keep - Hubby P would say hoard things like that for crafty type projects. I just love the ageing paper and old faded print!
The Union Jack I acquired for free! (a little surreptitious fluttering of the eyelashes!). I was busy looking through all the boxes for goodies when a man said ' Sorry Love, I've just bought that boxful' by this time I had the flag - His flag, in my hand. 'Oh' I said 'what a pity - I do so like this little flag, I collect old fabrics and whatnot' - with a nice smile of course! 'Oh you have it then' He said - then I got a long tale about what else was in the box and what he wanted it for - nice Man though! And nice flag!

Lots of other goodies too - pretty tin, 30's mirrored photograph frame, another Better Maid bowl, dressmaking body form, soaps, smellies, some 60's Vintage dresses (for ebay) the list goes on - Oh' and a little rabbit hutch - expanding family you know!

The dressmaking form I am covering with paper - papier mache' style, and finishing with layer of old print music - I think - up to now that's my idea. Other 'bodies' I have covered in scraps of Vintage fabric - I use them to display my collection if Vintage furs (sounds grand - I have two or three!)
- they were passed down to me from family members - I know Fur is really un PC nowadays, but they are so lovely and glamorous.
One of my 'bodies' wears a pretty Vintage corset and crystal beads under her fur!
The most unusual, and exciting thing I found - tossed on the floor - nearly getting trampled on, is this old Screen (possibly Victorian).
Hubby P thinks it is hauntingly Gothic - he calls it Morticias screen ( Morticia from the Adams family!)

There is a lot of damage - lots of restoration work to do (Hubby P is a whizz with a screwdriver and whatnot!) - but the two inner panels are in reasonable condition - the gold thread work is just beautiful.

I am still thinking of the best way to go about it, I think I may have to loose one outer very badly damaged panel, and maybe repair the fabric with black lace - make feature of the repair. Whatever I do will have to be done slowly and painstakingly - the fabric is so old and frail.
I saw it, liked it - just had to save it!

On the home provisions side, I made some Elderflower cordial - it is so lovely and refreshing!
I imagine its especially 'refreshing' with a splash of Gin or Vodka!!

Update on the Bunnies - they are out of the nest and scampering about the hutch with Mum, sorry the photo's not too good - they just won't keep still!

Off to stick some paper on a dummy - doesn't sound too good does it!!
xx Take Care For Now xx
If you like Vintage Buttons and Bits and Bobs, and Vintage clothes take a look on my ebay(Link on my side bar) - I've been having a listing fest!

Friday, 19 June 2009

Glorious Fragrant Fluffy Elderflowers!! Jelly Anyone?

Hope everyone's all ok, we've been having 'tinternet'! problems, but a kindly Knight called Stuart sorted us out and we're all 'hunky dory' now - fingers crossed!
Yes! its that time again folks - Mother Nature goes bonkers and garlands all our hedges with frilly frothy, fragranced lacey delights - the air is thick with the scent of Elderflowers.
They are a delight I treasure each year, they remind me so, of my childhood, a constant 'if you will' of my love affair with nature!
But what to do with them all - how to capture that wonderful fragrance for all the cold grey days.
Luckily Hubby P was in a reflective mood the other evening, so I handed him the basket and suggested he pick the Gooseberries, not that its a bad job, I enjoy anything like that, but its nice that Hubby's included in the garden, and not just all the heavy manual jobs.
So we had this little lot to do something with!

I thought about Gooseberry jam - but we don't eat too much jam (I end up giving it away) so I tried to think of what we do enjoy, and I came up with pickles and jellies to eat with cheese etc.
So I came up with this Gooseberry and Elderflower jelly - I put a touch of chilli in it too, although it is a bit lost in the overpowering lusciousness of the elderflowers!

Once it had come to a set I took the pan off the heat and added a few elderflowers, you can clearly see them in the jelly - they make it look all frothy!
I must say - not one for blowing my own trumpet, but it tastes wonderful - so scrummy, the scent and taste of the elderflowers is so fresh and summery!
I can see me scrounging more gooseberries to make more, because this lots not going to last very long!
We have plans to make some Elderberry Cordial too - such a mass of blooms on the trees, its a shame not to bottle as much a possible, and hopefully save some for the winter months.

Update on the baby bunnies!

This is one of the little chaps I gently lifted out of the nest, their eyes are nearly open, won't be long before they are running around. Mum is doing an excellent job.
xx Take care for now, have a nice weekend xx

Monday, 15 June 2009

Tra La! And The Birthday Giveaway Goes To !!!

Well ! How's your week been? I've had a lovely time!
First of all I would like to thank you all so much for your nice Birthday wishes, I had some lovely cards and pressies too! Unfortunately I was so busy with people popping in, and family to stay, I haven't taken any photos. - I feel its all been a bit of a whirlwind!
But I did get myself organised enough this morning to do the draw for the Birthday Give away!
And the Winner is Jo, of Jojo Designs! (there's a link on my sidebar).

So this little parcel of goodies will be winging its way to you as soon. I chose something flowery - a bit Country Garden-ish, I do hope its your sort of thing!
As I said we had our son and his partner down for the weekend, so we played out all weekend, and had a great time.
I picked up The National Gardens Scheme booklet the other day - they often have them in the garden centres.

This is a great scheme where ordinary people open their gardens to the public for a small fee, which goes to charity. It has raised £23 Million in the last 10 years, and supports a whole list of Charities ( I am not going to list them - but it does tell you all about it in the book).
The book gives Opening times/dates and directions to the Gardens, there are so many to choose from. We try and fit one in most weekends during the summer.
I feel its such an 'English' thing to do - they usually provide tea and cake sat in the garden - I always wear a hat! Its a bit like a garden tea party!

Here are just a couple of the photos I took at the garden we visited on Saturday.

I just loved this mass of wild cotton-y stuff growing at the side of the pond.

Of course the children played on the swing!

The Lads had energy enough for the beach (with the dog!), where-as I came back from the Open Garden with lots of plants (they often have a little stall selling their own cuttings and whatnot), so I spent the evening planting them in my own little bit of Eden!
A 'grand time' was had by all.

Thrifty finds!
I found this lovely bag a couple of weeks ago, I've just got around to washing and pressing it. The fabric is just so lovely, and the bag is quite large. I don't know what I shall use it for - but its just pretty enough to hang on the wall!

This weekend I found this dinky little basket (£2 ) - couldn't believe my luck, is in great condition. The old tatty music I thought I could use for crafty stuff, that old worn, tatty always appeals to me - maybe the secret to Hubby P's charm!!

And just to finish, an update on the bunnies - mother and babies are doing really well. She is an excellent mother, they seem to be growing really fast, they are no longer pink and hairless - they look like rabbits.

Bit of a poor photo, but I don't want to disturb them, and upset Mum. Wont be long until they are out of the nest!
xxx Take care for now xxx

Monday, 8 June 2009

Pretty Roses and Baby Bunnies - what a Happy Birthday Week!

Its my Birthday tomorrow so I would like to treat you all to a pretty rose!
Thankyou for all your interesting and enlightening blogs, its such a treat to sit and browse through all your Special Days and Thrifty Finds!
To celebrate I would like to do a Birthday Giveaway! Leave me a comment telling me of your favorite flowers and if they have a special meaning to you, and I will do a draw next Monday, the 15th June.
Meanwhile enjoy your rose!
Great excitement on Sunday morning! I went to see my girlies (the rabbits) to give them their feed, to find this - a nest full of pink wriggly little baby rabbits!
How excited was I , I had thought Dusty was expecting, she has been 'nesting' for a few days. Never the less - its a bit hit and miss, especially with it being her first time! Anyway up to now she's doing very well, keeping them nice and warm. You can see the nest in the photo, its a mass of hay and plucked fur. They will soon be out of the nest and running about - all being well - keep your fingers crossed!

With all this girly, baby stuff going on, Dad has had to go and live with the chickens for a while ( I need more hutch space!) - not that he minds, the deep litter is great to dig in!

Good Thrifting finds too, at the carboot sale!

This little metal table I picked up for £1, I am hoping it will just sit outside the door and 'shabby up' some more.

Lovely floaty Hippy dippy, Flower Power dresses! I thought they were pretty spectacular - just imagine what it must have been like living through that era!

And dotty, dotty aprons! there are two of these!

Just look - a Grannie Apron!
This is as new, never been worn, its just the kind I remember my Gran wearing, it goes with the wrinkled stockings and hair in rollers!

Is your Garden blooming too?
Here are just a few pics of my pretty flowers.

This (below) is a bit fuzzy - the wind was blowing! But its so pretty, its a Cutleaf Elder tree, the nigra (black) and the flowers are this incredible chocolaty pink colour!

I bought and planted this Tree Lupin only a few weeks ago - and its just flowering its socks off!

What garden is complete without a Gooseberry bush (after-all - its where they leave the babies!)
Gooseberry crumble for tea!

That's all for now - remember the Birthday Giveaway!
xx Take care xx

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Thrifting Finds to Pretty Cushions!

I seem to have got my sewing mojo back!
I found this little piece of Vintage cotton - a riot of floral loveliness, screwed up in the bottom of a box, at a carboot sale. I gave it a wash and it came up lovely - fresh as a daisy!
There was just enough to make a couple of cushion covers - very 'country cottage' meets 'shabby chic'!
I used a bit of broidery anglaise from the box of lace I found last week, and some vintage buttons, to add a bit of original 'fancy-pretty-ness', and finished with a bit of hand embroidery.

A bit of green cotton backs the cover and closes with poppers - buttons are just for decoration!

A nice fresh, touch of pretty florals to brighten my sofa!
Having just a very small house and lot ( too many really) of cushions already - I just can't resist 'saving' vintage cushion covers, especially the had embroidered ones - I have decided to keep just one of the two and put the other in my Etsy shop. I haven't had much luck with Etsy - I think its just so big nowadays, but I will give it another go. You never know, it might take someones fancy!
I hope it goes to a nice home where someone appreciates the materials it's made from, and the work that has gone into it.
But don't we all want that!

Whilst I was on a roll' I fitted Mucky Marge with her new frock, she looks a bit better, still a bit 'shabby' but I kinda like that!

On the 'finds' front - lucky me I found another piece of Better Maid ware - a cute little watering can - sort of thing. Its in the green form - I think its really quite cute.
I found it at the Tuesday carboot sale - just sat there for 50p!

xx Take care for now xx

Monday, 1 June 2009

Thrifting Finds and a Special Gift!

Hello! Hope everyone is well!
We are all enjoying the nice sunny weather, although I find it a little too hot to sit out in, I'm not complaining - its great.
Great excitement this weekend! It started with Hubby P asking me what I would like for my birthday (next week) - he was just stuck for ideas! I reminded him that he had built my rose bower - that was what I had wanted - but No, he was adamant, he wanted to get me a 'proper present'. Now usually at this point I would list a few plants I would like - he could nip to the garden centre and - hey - 'bobs yer uncle', one present for the wife!
'Well' I said, 'I've been thinking for a while now -You know what I would really like? A ring - a sort of Eternity ring'.
HubbyP 's face was a picture!!! - a) he doesn't know anything about jewellery, and b) He does know it will cost a bit more than a plant!
But of course I got the lovely, usual answer from him 'Yes, of course love, if that's what you would like'. I did explain that I wanted a ring I could wear - one that was not so expensive I would be afraid of dropping it in the chicken mash. Just really a token of our 16 years as a married couple.
So we went a looking - and here it is -
It was nice that we bought it from a Lady we know who deals in Vintage jewellery and fashion, wonder what kind of history it has.
On another note, just look at my Turks Cap Lily, blooming its socks off in this nice sunny weather!

On the carboot sale/thrifting front!

Three little metal buckets kindly 'shabbied' by someone else! They have has holes bashed through the bottom and soil still inside them, so whoever 'pre-loved' them before used them in the garden - which I think I shall do too. They will look nice on the table where we eat, when the sun shines!

I found these - apparently they are called 'Better-Maid' wear, I just remember them from my childhood. My Granparents had them as plant holders, anyway I saw them in a Charity shop and they took my fancy! I would quite like to collect them, I just love the colour. I think (looking on the web) the larger of the two was supposed to be a fruit bowl - but I have planted mine up with a geranium ( a special geranium, in that, it a direct descendant of the geranium my grandad use to grow when I was a child - it just has small very red flowers).
In the other pot is a small carob tree that I have grown from some seeds brought back from Portugal.

A few little waifs and strays I found - they have had a good wash and are drying in the sun!

I have had to make a new dress for the rag doll - she is still a bit stained so I shall call her Mucky Madge!
x Take care for now x