Tuesday, 23 February 2010

Colleen's Suitcase!

Just a quickie post - pic's of Treasure found today at the carboot sale.
More suitcases! the situation now is such that friends and stallholders are spotting them and 'thinking of you' as they say - which is nice. But I'm not sure just how many more I need!
Catherine found this little - iddy biddy case - so cute! It was quite battered and missing its handle, but just to look inside and see it belonged to a little girl called Colleen Moore - well I just had to bring it home. Was Colleen an Evacuee? Who was she - what was her Wartime experience? Peoples stories, stories everywhere!
I got a larger one too - to store fabric - so much fabric, its getting a bit silly really.

They are a bit battered on the outside, they will look better after a good going over with boot polish.

Found a bit of 'sturdy' - as they say, string!

And made a handle - very Make Do And Mend! Real Wartime stuff!

I lined the inside with some pretty flowery paper (scented drawer liners - I picked up cheap - from guess where!). I gave it all a good going over with PVA glue - its still wet in the pic.
This should give it a good sturdy (there's that word again - fav word of the week!) interior, it should look pretty when the glue has dried, although I don't think the scent (rose) will survive.
One of Hubby P's finds at the Charity shop this week - a very old bag of Kapok. The Ladies at the CS had saved it for him (they know his wife is a avid sewer and whatnot!) - how sweet is that. Apparently there were two bags, but they took their eye off the ball, and someone had it away with one bag!
I've not seen 'real' Kapok in a long time - usually its the artificial, nylon-y stuff you see in the shops. Did you know Kapok is made from 'pure vegetable down' - I didn't - I don't know what I thought it was - perhaps some by product of wool manufacture - Well I know now - it says so on the bag!
Feel a project comming on!

I had to call into the hardware shop before I came home, just to pick up some firelighters (sometimes the wood is a bit wet - needs a bit of help!) - and spotted these!

Well a Girl has to treat herself now and again!
I was hoping someone might have taken the hint and bought some for me at Christmas, but I missed out - so rather than buying flower seeds this year (I have a box of unused seeds I need to plant) I treated myself to these rather pretty tools!
xxx Just need a bit of sunshine now xxx

Monday, 22 February 2010

Purses, snowdrops and cutsie dogs!

Its been a bright but cold, cold day!
But hows this for s cheery sight!
The massed snowdrops in the hedge across from the cottage.

February can be a dreary cold, wet month - and the household bills still keep dropping into the post box. I suppose its no different throughout the year, but generally we are feeling a bit down, and wishing for the better weather - so bills are another tiresome thing to have to think about - and pay!
Thinking of the finances and ways of making a few more pounds to renew the bit of savings spent on keeping body and soul together over the winter - I had a good scrabble about in some of the boxes in the shed. Boxes of 'stuff' we had labeled 'Car boot'- stuff we were going to sell when we got around to having a stall at a carboot sale. Mostly it is things I have had - played with/displayed for a time and changed for something new that I have found.
I thought I would have a concerted effort at selling the 'stuff' on Ebay - my enthusiasm runs hot and cold with Ebay! I kinda resent the time it takes to sit listing when I could be sat sewing - or something equally more fulfilling!
Anyway I found a few pretty aprons and boxes of hankies (I have soooooo many hankies!!), the aprons I had hung up in the kitchen for a while, but I am rather too 'on the comfy side' to wear them, they just got buried under other 'stuff'!
So hopefully I will be disciplined enough to sit and list them - hum - soon!

Thought I would show you this one - so pretty, couldn't you just see 50's housewife all floral day dress, heels and red lipstick - getting Hubby's Dinner ready!

I like how it crosses over and fastens at the back.
Anyone having any luck at earning a few pennies doing something from home - hows etsy and Folksy doing? - are things selling? I really don't think there is much money about, people don't seem to be spending.
Still we have our sewing and knitting to keep us sane!
I made another little purse from the Harris Tweed samples - I made it from two pieces, so it was a bit bigger.

I made this one for myself, and I like something I can get my hand into - I have a bit of a problem with my hands/grip so its easier to get a fist of coins than pick out single coins from the purse.

I jazzed it up a bit with some rather 'free' embroidery - to disguise the join a bit.

And put a big nice jolly button on the front (as you know I do have a sackful of buttons!).

I used the rather loud, bright, sexy cotton fabric (the fabric Hubby P found at the Charity shop) to line the purse.
Its such a warm, wholesome sort of fabric - cheers me up! - working with nice 'stuff' (stuff - such a good word!)
Anyone remember what this yellow-y bright blob is?

I found it peering through the hedge late this afternoon when I took the empty milk bottles out to the gate.
It looked rather pretty - but of course the photo has come out a bit rubbish-y. Hopefully we will see more of it.

Leave you with a pic of Uncas and Fly - waiting patiently for Hubby P to come home from work, its funny how well they can tell the time!
xxx Take care - let me know what you're up to! xxx

Friday, 19 February 2010

New Life In The Old And Hole-y!!

That's another week over - are you ready for the weekend?
Lets hope there's not too much snow!
Just thought I would share a little of my doings - everyday stuff really, but that's my world - kinda 'everyday' - gentle and simplistic!
Here's Uncas - just wanting to be in on the act!
Well today saw the end of a long and productive relationship - our trusty log basket has had its day, as you can see the bottom is full of holes! We have managed for long enough by lining the bottom with newspaper, but its got past that now.

I have been looking for a replacement for a few weeks, the only suitable one I saw was £10 - and I wasn't paying so much!
But you know what they say 'Everything comes to She who waits'. I was bemoaning the state of the basket to a friend, and the fact that my carpet is showered with sawdust and little bits of wood whenever the basket if filled and carried through the house. Well it just so happened they had one that was standing unused in their shed - and we could have it with pleasure.

So meet the new big sturdy woodbasket!

So what to do with the old basket - its outlived its working life, but I think it is still has a worn and faded beauty, the wood has mellowed to a nice gentle colour.
It would look at home in the garden - but of course wouldn't hold soil, so I 'planted' it in one of the beds - there it can live its last days fading into the ground from whence it once grew. In these last days it can give life to some pretty flowers and homes and shelter to the little creatures living amongst the plants.

I dug and planted it in the soil and filled it with some compost from the heap. I had some packets of bulbs that I had not planted last autumn - so I pushed them into the compost - they can take their chances, hopefully we will get some blooms. They were packs of Alliums and er um - something else. Perhaps this weekend I can find some inexpensive primulas or something, to add to the basket.

You can see here the bulbs were beginning to sprout!

Can you see the big sea washed tree branch the boys brought home from the beach - that was early December time, and I have just found a home for it. It looks well with the basket - looks a bit like a woodland garden. Look a lot better of course when everything starts growing!

The days have been quite sunny and bright but a touch too cold to do much outside, so I thought I would have a bit of a freshen up - bit of fresh paint in the kitchen and some new curtains for the cupboards.
I bought this fabric ages ago, I had forgotten all about it, so it was a nice surprise when I went rummaging through my fabric stash - ideal for a couple of curtains.

I know the tins look a bit daft with sticky labels on them, but believe me in this house of Men everything has to be labelled - Hubby P has lived with me all this time - plasters (first aid stuff) have lived in the same tin all this time - but still he doesn't know where they are. I know - I know - being a man his mind is on higher things!!
Its just a good job 'someone' has thought to put stickers on tins for when he cuts himself doing the jobs of his higher mind! lol!!

Do you like the little plaque - my Mum gave it to me years ago when my boys were young - and I was particularly frazzled with them.
It says 'Children Need Love Especially When They Don't Deserve It!'

And its so true.

I 'ran up' as they say, a couple of teatowels with the fabric that was left over from the curtains, I perhaps would never have chosen brown - but it works quite well. Still got some way to go with the painting and whatnot, but getting there slowly.
Its all got to be done before the sun comes - then I can play in my garden!
Have a nice weekend!

Tuesday, 16 February 2010

Ello' there campers! How's your week going?
Hope you are not succumbing to the dreaded February depression - tis a dreary month!
It may have been a bit grey and damp today but I got myself ready and trotted off to the car boot sale. Just for a change of scene really - I think I was getting a bit to obsessive/occupied with the housework - not a healthy thing!
I managed to find this lovely wicker basket for a couple of pounds - isn't it pretty, and its in such good order.
The little scarf is just so pretty too - I can't decide if they are ducks or geese, but its cute. It will come in for some nice sewing project, or maybe just nice used as a lining for a little basket.
This post is going to be a bit photo heavy - but lots of pretty things to show you!

The geese/ducks are sort of Easter-ish, don't you think?

On to a little Thrifty Snippets bit!

The other day in the supermarket I was buying toilet tissue - as you do ! and I was going along comparing prices, and I saw the whole array of paper handkerchief's or tissues - such a huge array, lots of different colours and sizes.
Now its not something I usually buy - perhaps occasionally if we have bad colds, but as a rule I use the old fashioned - and it must be said - very pretty, washable cotton handkerchiefs.
I started doing this because I just love the pretty hankies, but thinking about it, it does save money - and trees, by not buying the disposable tissues. The old fashioned cotton or linen ones are easy enough to wash, and I think most of us will put a load of washing in every day - I just throw the hankies in with a general wash. Yes they do benefit from an iron - at least they look better - they can be used un-ironed of course. Personally I like a nice crisp cotton hankie (I give them a little spray of starch - just love the smell!)

These are a few of my everyday hankies - pretty bits of lace and embroidery - utterly feminine! Hubby P does have some Men's handkerchief's - but they are pretty boring - funnily enough he wont use the lacy ones!

These are a touch fancier - so pretty!

Pretty, pretty butterfly - I cant bring myself to use this one yet, but it sits in the hankie bag.

And how super sexy is this one!

This sweet little number reminds me of the sort of thing I would buy for my Mum for Mothers Day - that's not long off!

I store all my hankies in a pretty peg bag that was kindly made for me by Josie from sykessillysite.blogspot.com/
(Josie makes the most lovely things - take a little look at her blog - you can link from my side bar)
Anyway the little bag hangs from the rails of my bed - handy for me to grab a hankie each morning.

Told you this was a long blog - if you are still with me - nearly finished!
Just a couple of tatty suitcases (yes! more cases!) - I found these at the weekend, they were only £1 each, but pretty tatty inside.

I have just lined them with newspaper - I got them to store my fabric in and the newspaper just makes it case cleaner and fresher - good enough to store the bits and pieces of treasured fabric.

Got the pics back to front again - but you get the idea.
So that's what I've been up to - what have you been doing? Hows the thrift going - leave me a comment - spread the thrifty tips! Goodness knows we need all the penny saving tips we can get!

Sunday, 14 February 2010

Sign of The Times & Thrifty Meals!

Well - a grey and rainy day here, a bit of a disappointment at the carboot sales, not a lot to report.
Still, it was nice to be out and about, bit of rain didn't stop us. We used today as a food shopping day - how I hate it! Just hate the impersonal , hot, pushy, busy supermarkets. But it has to be done - to certain degree, if we are to eat. Yes it would be nice to use all the specialist independent shops - if you can find any, but I can't afford to shop in that way.
Saying that - we do try and support local businesses, we buy fruit and veg from a stallholder who stands regularly at the carboot, and meat from the butchers stall (refrigerated lorry type thing) who also comes to the carboot - it is becoming more like a Market every year, with regular stallholders selling new goods.
This morning I bought my veg and was just about to leave when I thought about bacon - as you do! - you can do so much with a bit of bacon! So I said to Hubby P, I will just get a bit of bacon, anyway when asked for the bacon, the butcher asked if I was interested in a special offer - two joints of meat - pork and beef for £10. Now I don't usually buy joints - there is only Hubby P and I who eat meat, the lads are vegetarians, but I thought why not, those lumps of meat will go a long way.
I think, talking to other stall holders, trade has been very bad, no one has any money to spend, and meat/food is one economy that people can make. The butcher just wasn't selling much, so he was dropping his prices - after all meat is not something you can store for long.
I was quite pleased with my buy, and it meant we had a nice meal of roast beef and yorkshire pudding, and all the trimmings!

I've got the pic's mixed up, but as you can see - a lovely bit of meat, and I made a Thrifty Fruitbowl crumble to follow (all the old fruit in the fruit bowl plus a few frozen blackberries, collected last autumn, with a crumble topping!).

Hubby P made swift work of the meat - it was rather good, and Rich gobbled the crumble before I even thought to take a pic!
But a good old feast was had by all!
Its just a bit worrying when you see shops and businesses struggling for trade, the lack of money about, we are losing more jobs on Anglesey shortly. And they tell us we are out of the recession - not in our little corner we're not!
xx Hope you had a nice day, take care xx

Saturday, 13 February 2010

Pretty Crystal 'raindrops'!

Hope you are all having a nice weekend.
Just thought I would share this little bit of girly, sparkly stuff with you!
You all must have gathered by now that I like the odd crystal, and indeed - I have a rather nice collection of Amethyst many thanks to hubby P who does spoil me somewhat. It must be said we do have a very nice 'rock shop' near by which is a delight to visit - but I digress - today's business - tiny 'raindrop' crystals.
I do have a variety of crystals hanging in the window - very pretty when they catch the light. Some are from vintage chandeliers, some modern 'new age-y' sorts, many were given to me as gifts, all are special to me.

This new idea of finding little crystals to adorn old lace was inspired by a photo - I can't remember if I saw it on someones blog, or in a magazine - but it looked so pretty!

So today when I saw a stall at the carboot selling crystals - the lady had bought some old shop stock a couple of years ago, and was now trying to clear some of it - lots of lovely things.
Anyway when I said what I was looking for she scrabbled in an old tin - and right at the bottom was these tiny raindrop-y crystals - just the thing!

( Just another pic of the window crystals and a amethyst geode - bit better light!)

This is what is fondly known as 'the shelf of dead folk!' - sounds a bit harsh, but its lovingly treasured, it has photos of our forebears - wayback, and not so far back - people we love and miss - so its special.
The shelf has a white, lace edged cloth (just don't look at the dust!) - and I thought it would look nice - 'a la picture' from the blog/magazine - with the little crystals attached.
So that was the evenings little job - nicely, gently creative with Billy Holiday on the record player and glass of wine to refresh me.

You can just see my Parents wedding photograph (to the left) - both of who are no longer with us, and to the right - slightly hidden is a photo of my Grandparents wedding.
The little pic of the child sat on the step - in a dress, is my Father. When he was young it was commonplace to dress 'toddlers' all the same, in dresses - how things do change! When you think of all the designer clothes we now have, even for newborns.

I am quite pleased with the look of it, of course I haven't seen the effect in daylight yet - hopefully they will catch the sunlight and give us a bit of sparkle!
A Girl needs a bit of sparkle now and then!
xx Take care xx

Wednesday, 10 February 2010

Thrifty Snippet's Pillow Cases!

What a nice day sunshiny day we enjoyed today - just look at that blue sky!
Yes it was cold - but the sun was shining _ just makes you feel so much better!
And I even put some washing on the line to dry - first time this year. Of course it didn't dry completely, but enough to get it to that ideal ironing dampness - you know what I mean.
A few of you seem to enjoy the 'Thrifty Snippet's - bits and bobs of Grannies wisdom handed down and money saving ideas picked up here and there.
So here's another idea - on Tuesday at the carboot sale I found this rather pretty flannelet sheet, all pink with delightful little rosebuds strewn across it. It cost pennies, so I brought it home.
Now what to do with it - it was a single bed size, so no good for the bed, and I don't think Hubby P would care too much for rosebuds - mind you he is so tired at the moment, I doubt that he would notice what colour the sheets are on the bed! Still I liked it so I thought I would make some pillowcases for me to use.

I remember years ago when I was expecting my babies, I was given some old flannel sheets and taught how to turn them into cot sheets. Using the sides of the sheet (the bits that get tucked under the mattress - and thus don't get much wear) cut cot sheet sized pieces and hem - simple.
Any little pieces left over that were in good order (its the middle of the sheet that gets the wear and gets a bit thin) were turned into tea towels or simply kept for cleaning. Nothing was wasted.

So for pillow cases - cutting from the edge of the sheet - using a pillow case as a pattern, I cut two pillow case size pieces, allowing for hems etc.

I had a look in my lace stash for a bit of fancy!
I always unpick any lacy bits from garments, or linen before it hits the rag bag, a Girl never knows when she might need a bit of lace!
When I am Treasure hunting the carboot sales or Charity shops and I see a bit of damaged linen, if its got a nice bit of lace attached, I will bring it home (and usually its cheap because its damaged!) - I unpick the lace and ragbag the rest.
So always a good stash of lacy bits and trim!

I simply ran them up on the sewing machine - easy enough to do, even if you are a novice sewer - just look at an existing pillowcase, its just a big bag.
I prettied them up with the lace and a bit of ribbon, and of course I had to add a couple of sweet little buttons!

So that was this afternoons bit of sewing - two nice soft, pretty pillow cases for a few pennies.
So enough of me! what are all you lot doing on the Thrifty front? I hope you are all 'pulling your weight' and 'doing your bit' ! lol!
xxx Take care for now xxx

Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Suitcase Project and Tuesdays Treasure!

Evening folks!
Just a few pic's of the Suitcase Project! - at last its finished!
A few of you have been rather curious, especially those of you who have seen me trawling the bootsales for suitcases, one or two of you have said 'what Another suitcase!!'
Well as you can see we have used them all - and can perhaps fit in another one or two!
It all started when I asked Hubby P if he could build me some open shelves on which I could store/stack suitcases to use as storage for all my 'stuff'. Mostly sewing, crafty stuff that I do use on a regular basis. Hubby P suggested we make a dresser type thing (that 'we' is he does all the work - I stand around holding tools and giving 'constructive' comments).
So we did - its quite an open sort of affair - the main aim of it being a place to stack nice, pretty, brown, vintage suitcases
We used some old drawers from an old dressing table in the sides of the dresser - to store things like candles, napkins and other everyday stuff.

There are two big areas for the cases and in the middle a handy shelf arrangement to hold a few everyday bits and bobs - drinking glasses, wine, wineglasses, wine, fruit, sherry, sweeties, wine - you get the picture! All that's needed - and handy, for a pleasant evening!

I have started filling the cases and have put my luggage labels on each one - then I can find everything easily. I have a case for beads, buttons, greetings cards, wrapping paper, fabric trim etc etc...

Hubby P suggested the old clock face on the top - a bit like you would have at an old railway station, he calls it the Lost Luggage Area!
I hope to find more - perhaps smaller, old battered clock faces to join the one that sits all alone watching over our 'luggage'.

The walls of the hall were already papered in an unusual mix of my vintage papery finds - old newspapers, children's books, some Latin, old music - allsorts of random interesting stuff. We like it - it gives our tiny cottage warmth, and texture, and a generally 'cool' as the boys might say - a cool vibe!!

I think these little cases are just so cute!
So what do you think ? Cool? or not really for you? - it works well for us, at least I can find that elusive, particular button or trim!!
Today's Carboot -y Treasure - just has to be this 1960's record rack! Just the thing I needed to hold the raggedy stack of LP's heaped by the record player.

Gave it a good wash - and bobs your watsit!
Just the job!
And all for a couple of pounds.

Off to listen to the Inkspots now - glass of wine in hand!

xx Well take care xxx
xxx let me know what you are thinking its nice to get feedback - are you still being Thrifty? xxx