Monthly Archives: February 2016

You are browsing the site archives by month.

Bringing In The Spring To The Kennel!

Spring Things!, Rocking Dog

Spring Things!

Though it’s nippy outside i’m bringing in the spring to the kennel! Daffodils and tulips can be purchased really inexpensively to make a room come alive and instantly feel more cheery. I love the fact that at this time of year I can use my tulip vase for its correct purpose, to provide a watering hole for, well….tulips! Bought in the clearance section of TK Maxx a few years ago I enjoy filling it with these fleeting blooms. Oh how I would simply love a towering antique Delftware tulip vase! Originally made in the 17th century the Dutch blue and white vases were painted with Chinese decoration to imitate the decoration found on Chinese porcelain. The pots were generally made in a number of sections, if made in one piece they would often collapse during firing. Ironically, just as the Dutch had copied Chinese decoration for their wares, the Chinese went onto copy the Delft tulip vases! These were then imported into Europe by the Dutch East India Company together with silk, cotton and exotic spices. Tulips themselves were introduced to Britain at the end of the 16th century and were incredibly rare and expensive. “Girl With The Pearl Earring” is a good film to view to gain an idea of what life was like in the Netherlands in the 17th century. At the height of the popularity of the film my girls and I went to see the painting of “Girl With The Pearl Earring” by Johannes Vermeer at the Mauritshuis in The Hague, anything to escape the misery of a wet campsite! The painting was much smaller than I had expected, was very beautiful and the girls gaze seemed to mystically follow you. Being a Bristol girl I need to mention Banksy’s 2014 artwork entitled “Girl With a Pierced Eardrum “. A massive Banksy creation it can be found on Bristol’s harbourside. Vermeer’s girl is recreated by our most famous Bristol artist, with her iconic pearl earring being replaced with a strategically placed alarm box!

Back to a much more humble installation, my kitchen window is a profusion of pink at the moment. A £2.50 hyacinth tub from M&S and vase of pink blooms make for a pretty and fragrant washing up session. The heavy stems with their waxy blooms also go some way in screening a garden that needs some serious digging and cultivating!

Paper pompoms and fan garland decorations also provide a bit of spring-like cheer in the house. I don’t need a party or indeed any excuse whatsoever to do a little transient decorative frou’ing!

Outside in the Rocking Dog garden there are branches of showy japonica blossom, hellebores, wild violets, snowdrops and daffodils. Create little posies for thoughtful gifts, remember it’s Mothering Sunday coming up this weekend.

Hope this is the start of a good week for you. Love Rocking Dog x

Hyacinth Profusion, Rocking Dog

Hyacinth Profusion

The Humble Daff', Rocking Dog

The Humble Daff’

Tulip Vase, Rocking Dog

Tulip Vase

Pretty Paper, Rocking Dog

Pretty Paper

Paper Pompom, Rocking Dog

Paper Pompom

Flowers To Give, Rocking Dog

Flowers To Give

Think Beyond The Box, Wear A Tablecloth!

Deco Tablecloth & Andyman's Gran!, Rocking Dog

Deco Tablecloth & Andyman’s Gran!

My interpretation of thinking beyond the box and wearing a tablecloth, is to use them as fabulous scarves, shawls and sarongs. I’ll pass on that last one because i’m not one for promenading on the beach. In fact i’m the one sat under the tree or umbrella and complaining that it’s simply too blasted hot! Give me snow, the arctic circle, pine trees and sub-zero temperatures in preference to blazing sun and sand hot enough to melt your flip-flops!

So yes a fashion staple of mine is a good vintage tablecloth to snazz up a plain, and possibly somewhat bland ensemble. Spend a little time configuring the best way of draping your vintage garb. If you are of a certain age, Dame Judi Dench and the lovely Dame Jenni Murray have great ways of configuring a whole host of scarves.

Yesterday the CLIC Sargent charity shop in Gloucester Road proved a fruitful vintage hunting ground. I spotted a lovely square tablecloth in jolly yellow and white with vibrant images of tables laid up with lobster, gammon and exotic fruits. £10 bought me a fantastic little cover up when forthcoming hot days become dusky cooler evenings. Dating from the 50’s or early 60’s, I know I will covet this nostalgic textile. Oldest daughter has “bagsed” it already without even seeing it!

Still in the 50/60’s I have a lovely cloth depicting red roses which i’m sure will get an outing soon. I find it fascinating to think about how it would have looked in its surroundings when it was proudly purchased or gifted. Was it laid over the oh so practical Formica topped kitchen table and was it dressed with the latest pyrex tableware?

Another favourite table linen is a somewhat older cloth dating from the 20’s/30’s. We are in the realms of The Charleston, cloche hat, sleek motor car, the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb and glamour with a capital G. Of course not everything was rosy, the Great Depression and grinding poverty for many, sat harshly in this era of the carefree spinning flapper girl. My Deco tablecloth came from a now defunct vintage shop in Clifton Arcade. Cleo’s tiny shop was an absolute trove of fashion, jewels and accessories of the last century. She was passionate about her stock and knowledgable on its provenance and quirks. Back to the cloth, in perfect condition it is printed with geometrics, stylised flora and abstract pattern. With a simple colour palate of navy, dove grey and vibrant orange on a cream background it’s certainly striking! I wore it against white linen for a party. After a lot of frou’ing I decided to set it on one shoulder. Voila!

Although not a tablecloth, I am somewhat tempted to use an old St John Ambulance sling as a scarf one of these days. I love the powerful black imagery. It dates from WW1 and unfortunately I have no recollection when or where I bought it. It’s amazing that in the last decade we have seen cotton triangular slings become obsolete. Velcro, D rings, mesh, manmade drip dry materials, ice pockets, render the art of tying a sling to history.

If tablecloths are stained or moth eaten they can be cannibalised into pretty aprons, retro headbands and turbans. “Chic on a Shoestring” by Mary Jane Baxter is a great little tome for up-cycling materials into whizzy things to wear. There are even instructions on making a pill box hat from a Cornflake’s packet. Wedding millinery sorted!

Whatever the weekend (sorry, very cheesy link!) holds for you, I hope it’s a lovely one. Love Rocking Dog x

Rock n' Roll Table Linen, Rocking Dog

Rock n’ Roll Table Linen

60's Mum & Bro!, Rocking Dog

60’s Mum & Bro!

Wonderful CLIC Emporium, Rocking Dog

Wonderful CLIC Emporium

WW1 Sling, Rocking Dog

WW1 Sling

Box For The Sling!, Rocking Dog

Box For The Sling!

Vintage Laundry, Rocking Dog

Vintage Laundry

Rocking Dog Is So Excited By Easter Decorations!

Flowers & Chocolates, Rocking Dog

Flowers & Chocolates

Yes indeed Rocking Dog is so excited by Easter decorations. Easter is a little way away yet, but now is the time to do a little bit of Easter stashing!

I love little bags of foil wrapped eggs and of course Lindt bunnies. Much too dangerous for my waistline to have those tempting creatures in my cupboard! TK Maxx, supermarkets, John Lewis and M&S are all worth checking out for Easter Frou. I bought lovely raffia carrots from TK Maxx, whilst chocolate eggs of the foiled and speckled variety were bought in M&S and Sainsbury’s. During my Easter fest I spotted pretty rustic wreaths, bunting, rabbits, crowned fluffy chicks, twiggy bird houses and wicker baskets. I was very restrained, in part because we will be spending Easter thousands of miles away this year.

I was tempted by the book Handmade Gifts From The Kitchen by Alison Walker. A bargainous £7.99 (RRP.£20) in TK Maxx. Although the book has no recipes specifically for Easter, there are many that would adapt well to be given as Easter presents. Imagine Honey & Almond Nougat, Coconut Ice or Macarons cocooned in pretty floral lined boxes or in vintage lustre tea cups.

Other finds were to be found in “my” beloved John Lewis remnant bin. I loved the decadent little piece of fabric I found with stripes in muted purple, mustard and rose together with geometric embroidery. In time I think it will make four lozenge shaped cushions with sumptuous velvet backs. In the dressmaking department I bought green and white gingham for £2 metre. Very fresh and simple it will be used for projects to herald the spring. However, I also know I will be using it to line stockings etc.. for the end of the year, perish the thought!

This months Country Living is very inspirational for Easter makes and bakes. So let’s all get creative and bring a little bit of spring into our homes!

More Easter and springtime loveliness to follow in the coming weeks from Rocking Dog.

 Last Easter Frou!, Rocking Dog

Last Easter Frou!

Vintage Hankies, Rocking Dog

Vintage Hankies

So Sad Bunny, Rocking Dog

So Sad Bunny

Fab' Fabric, Rocking Dog

Fab’ Fabric

Easter Inspiration, Rocking Dog

Easter Inspiration

Good For Gifts, Rocking Dog

Good For Gifts

Raffia Carrots, Rocking Dog

Raffia Carrots

Pretty Paper, Rocking Dog

Pretty Paper

Easter House 2015, Rocking Dog

Easter House 2015

No More Sewing Procrastination!

Cotton Reel Chaos!, Rocking Dog

Cotton Reel Chaos!

After a hectic and noisy Burns’ Night and with the fleet of glasses tucked away, furniture reconfigured and copious bottle collection ashamedly left out for recycling, it’s now time to return to some serious sewing. There is to be no more procrastination, absolutely none!

Today, I will finally sew the Roman blind. Fabrics have been selected from the newly reformed Material Mountain. I have chosen a dog tooth gingham (Ikea) and have paired this with a heavily hand embroidered vintage border taken from a curtain bought for £20 in Bartlett Street Antiques Centre. The embroidery is exquisite and I hope Beloved Bernina will be able to cope with the thickness and density. The backing fabric is from a 100% cotton sheet purloined from my mother in laws linen cupboard.

I am using the printed instructions acquired whilst attending the Roman Blind making workshop at The Makery, Bath. I also have the little prototype blind to refer to, again this originated from the workshop. Fabrics have been duly carefully measured and cut in readiness for the sewing to begin.

Roman blinds are a really cost effective way of dressing a window. Curtains require much greater quantities of fabric to provide the necessary fullness, and, often involve expensive curtain poles and finials. A blind requires a simple wooden batten and dowelling rod, both inexpensively purchased at a timber merchant or DIY store.

With the blind sewn and hung it will be time to move on to making a seat cushion for a wonderful wooden Art Deco armchair. With lots of feathers to deal with…. it’s gonna get messy! The chair has spent too long feeling unloved, and with its bare springs it’s currently not a comfortable seating proposition! Photo’s of this project will follow in due course.

By the end of the week I want to have made some Christmas prototypes in preparation for a business pitch. In between all of this there is a Birthday cake to be made. Even that’s going to have a bit of a Christmas theme going on!

The prospect of some serious sewing is a good one.

 Material Mountain, Rocking Dog

Material Mountain

Blind Bible, Rocking Dog

Blind Bible

Makery Prototype, Rocking Dog

Makery Prototype

The Components, Rocking Dog

The Components

Yummy Border, Rocking Dog

Yummy Border

After The Blind, Christmas Returns!, Rocking Dog

After The Blind, Christmas Returns!

Wrapping Up For Spring

Spring Bloom Wrap, Rocking Dog

Spring Bloom Wrap

Walking yesterday in the warming transient sunshine, it felt as if a welcome waft of spring had arrived. Though the lilac is far from flowering, and the Magnolia isn’t yet tempted to burst forth, there were hopeful signs of less grey and less wet! Inspired by the shows of Daffodils, Croci, Wild Violets and Snowdrops I thought i’d share my Wrapping Up For Spring.

M & S have excelled themselves in a particularly beautiful paper edition “Adventures In Spring” (pick up a free copy in the food department of any M&S). There were pages of Spring florals, perfect for wrapping a Birthday present and dressing a pot of Hyacinths. Non flowery pages did not go to waste, and were used for wrapping another couple of gifts.

I complemented the floral loveliness with some artificial pansies (which cleverly disguised some wording), thin gingham ribbon and a luggage tag. I am a big fan of Lamy fountain pens and am adoring the exciting colours of their new ink cartridges. For this label I used violet ink, but i’m desperate to try out the orange and lime green. Oh, i’m all together SO fickle!

Today i’m preparing for a belated Burn’s Night which is happening over the weekend. Pipes, drums, addressing the haggis, a quaich of whiskey or two, food with an Italian slant, i’m sure Rabbie will hear us toasting his poetry prowess!

Whatever you are doing this weekend I hope it’s going to be enjoyable, and not as ear shatteringly noisy or whiskey laden as mine!

Love Rocking Dog x

Now for getting Real Live Rocking Dog into the bath!

It's A Wrap!, Rocking Dog

It’s A Wrap!

Tied With A Bow, Rocking Dog

Tied With A Bow

Hyacinth Frou'ing, Rocking Dog

Hyacinth Frou’ing

Spring Collection, Rocking Dog

Spring Collection

Vintage Violets, Rocking Dog

Vintage Violets

The Real Thing, Rocking Dog

The Real Thing

The Lightning Strike, Get Me Connected!

Calm After The Storm, Rocking Dog

Calm After The Storm

Sorry I have been away so long. We had a lightning strike about ten days ago and it has taken out our internet. I really have missed doing my Rocking Dog blog, and normal service has yet to resume. Come on BT I need to be connected!

Thankfully I have been busy with various projects so haven’t had too many blogging withdrawal symptoms. Beloved Bernina has been busy making a dog bed for Real Live Rocking Dog and there are the beginnings of a Roman blind. Unfortunately the blind project has come to a bit of a grinding halt as it requires some mathematically challenging calculations. I strongly believe I have dyscalculia… sounds tragically painful, but is numeracy dyslexia. I want to campaign to have symbols on cashpoint machines rather than numbers (i.e., duck, ball, heart etc…). Every time I go to a cash machine I am sent into a blind panic regarding whether I will have remembered my number or not. I’d rather not remember the fact that my bedroom walls were plastered with gigantium times table posters for years in the faint hope i’d remember at least my 2x table! So… back to the blind, it remains in pieces until I give myself the space to work through the figures!

Various wedding projects have kept me on my toes, addressing envelopes, sewing 130 cutlery pockets and de-Christmas’ing some huge lanterns. The lanterns bought for £13 each in TK Maxx have gone from festive red to chalky Annie Sloan white. Result! Unfortunately, I have also had my first sleepless night worrying about the enormity of doing the wedding food for 120 guests. It really will be fine. It’s just that i’m not very good at rationalising anything when it’s pitch black and i’m wanting sleep. It will be more than fine it will be AMAZING… and i’m hopeful that i’ll even remember to pull off my pinny before heading into the church. It’s a while off yet … so I hope sleep mode will kick in without any more thoughts of serving platters, refrigeration, sourcing ingredients, logistics etc…!

Post- storm I found myself back in Weston Super Mare again. It was a fabulous day with clear blue skies and welcome sunshine. Following the high stormy tides, swathes of flotsam and jetsam littered the beach. How I love beach foraging, and my trove included shells, peach stones, pebbles and abandoned toys. Dried out, the treasures are housed in a glass jar waiting to be used for some future project.

Another walk took me to the Ashton Court Estate. Nipping winds and dramatic grey skies dominated this walk, but Real Live Rocking Dog didn’t seem to mind. I loved the huge balls of mistletoe swaying in the wind smugly. They had mystically escaped the 2015 Christmas cull.

With various celebrations to wrap for, I loved picking up the latest edition of M&S Adventures (Spring) freebie paper. It prettily and stylishly wrapped birthday and Valentine’s gifts for free.

My Stanley tool bag so thoughtfully bought for me by Andyman has come into its own this week. I finally adorned the dressing table with the agate handles and mended the cooker (ooh …. my language!!) On the subject of homemaking, I am LOVING The Great Interior Design Challenge (BBC2) at the moment.

The most boring achievement of the week has to be the fact that I have clean kitchen cupboards. No more plastic tubs tumbling out to cause the most terrible of expletives, and now some great stock control in place. Yippee, it’s amazing how clean cupboards makes your brain feel somehow less cluttered. I can report that unlike my Mother in law’s recent clean out there were no ancient tins of Toast Toppers to report!

I do hope I can sign on again soon, I have missed my banter with the world!

I hope this finds you all well, and that you are enjoying the fact that we are hurtling towards another weekend.

Love Rocking Dog x

Not Mistletoe Season!, Rocking Dog

Not Mistletoe Season!

New Bed, Rocking Dog

New Bed

Starting The Blind, Rocking Dog

Starting The Blind

Agate Handles, Rocking Dog

Agate Handles

Beach Treasure, Rocking Dog

Beach Treasure

Wrapping For Free, Rocking Dog

Wrapping For Free

Matrimonial Painting..., Rocking Dog

Matrimonial Painting…

 ...Stitching, Rocking Dog

…Stitching

... & Scribing, Rocking Dog

… & Scribing

Buying Supplies In Beautiful Bath

Rocking Dog Loves A Bit Of Gingham!,Rocking Dog

Rocking Dog Loves A Bit Of Gingham!

Blogging has taken rather a back seat this week. Sorry, still not feeling 100% . Yesterday it was time to venture into Bath to buy supplies. With envelopes to address for The Boy’s fast approaching wedding I needed new nibs. Meticulous Ink on Walcot Street was where I was heading, but naturally there was plenty to distract me before I reached this truly gorgeous printing emporium! I found the sweetest of craft supply shops at the back of Bartlett Street Antiques Centre. Juniper and Blue may be bijoux, but it carries a wonderful selection of carefully selected ribbons, beads, wool, papers etc.. With my love of gingham I could not resist a Noolibird gingham stamp. Toast and Blue on Bartlett Street followed, for wedding outfit inspiration. I am not a matching dress and bolero sort of gal, and thus far have bought curtain fabric to make a 50’s style duster coat. I better get Beloved Bernina rattling away because time is, well…..rattling away!

Eventually I found myself on the road to Meticulous Ink. I love Walcot Street and beyond, there are so many quirky independent shops and interesting buildings. My walk took me past The Fine Cheese Company, and I steered myself swiftly past. How I love their cafe, and in particular their cheese platters! This lovely street boasts Scandi’ interior shops, one or two good charity shops, Farrow & Ball, suppliers of sisal, wool and wood flooring, a weaver, a wedding dress maker (say no more!!) cafe’s and vintage furniture shops. I loved nipping into The Fig Store. It sells rustic vintage furniture together with eclectic homeware. It was SO calming, the majority of the stock being in various hues and textures of grey, soft whites and linen. I loved the old hoes which had been up-cycled as stair rails. When warmer temperatures arrive there is a delightful gravelled and manicured garden for customers to peruse. Lovely, yes really lovely.

Nibs bought, I was treated to a little masterclass with Athena and Charlie to try an troubleshoot my capital D’s.

Further along the street (by now we are onto Cleveland Terrace) I ventured into Owl in The Ivy. Another gorgeous shop, again very calming but darker and somehow more sinister (in a lovely way!) than The Fig Store. Vintage furniture, hessian printed coffee sacks, succulents, twine, all beautifully staged, made for a joyous browsing moment. Emma hosts supper clubs and workshops in this evocative space. Details of events will be up and coming from her soon. Her blog photography is truly beautiful and she is going to be running a workshop on how to produce good photo’s for blogs etc… I would love to learn more, but there maybe one slight problem. I need to get myself a smart phone and stop being a Diplodocus! Yes, a very inspiring end to the trawl along one of my favourite Bath streets.

Back in town a final purchase was made in Anthropologie. I bought lovely purple agate handles in their sale section. For a few months there have just been ugly holes in the newly painted dressing table whilst I have tried to find the perfect pulls! More worrying is the fact that we are without a wall light on the stairs, again I am holding out for the perfect illumination, and not one with a terrifying price tag.

Bedtime reading was free – a copy of Crumbs (lovely South West food related magazine) and Vow (beautifully produced wedding magazine) together with the latest Farrow & Ball colour chart. Now let me see, chalky whites, greys and linen. Happy Days!

Wishing everyone a lovely weekend and I hope that you can find inspiration, ambience and a sense of calm in the greyness that is February.

Love Rocking Dog X

Meticulous Nibs, Rocking Dog

Meticulous Nibs

Oh, So Tempting!, Rocking Dog

Oh, So Tempting!

Calm Quirky Home, Rocking Dog

Calm Quirky Home

Fabulous Fig, Rocking Dog

Fabulous Fig

Fig Store Order, Rocking Dog

Fig Store Order

Bedtime Reading, Rocking Dog

Bedtime Reading

Trying To Buy The Right Present, Always.

Signed, Sealed & Almost Delivered!, Rocking Dog

Signed, Sealed & Almost Delivered!

I sometimes lament the fact that the role of Godmother has eluded me. A good friend sometimes says I can have some of her godchildren – for she has many! However, I love my role of auntie and have the immense joy of three nieces. I even had the immense privilege of being at the birth of the oldest one, couldn’t be at the birth of the second and the third simply wouldn’t wait for me. Indeed, she didn’t even wait for the midwife, and slipped into the world one starry November night onto the bathroom floor!

Although I don’t see a tremendous amount of the nieces, when we do gather I love to learn of their latest trials and tribulations. I love to share their successes and try to help them through challenging times, when things don’t go quite so well. I really am here for them, and not just for plotting boring family trees (sorry Cress, will you ever forgive me?!) and giving little pep talks. We have had fun over the years doing family holidays, walking dogs, sharing food, camping, parties and so on.

The oldest left her teens behind last week, so present buying was necessary. I so try to buy the right thing, for I do not want the Avon pomander situation!
At Christmas a kind neighbour would buy my sister and I a plastic Avon pomander, American Tan tights or the like. Meanwhile our darling brother would be given a postal order of which we were very jealous! I have tried to avoid such disappointments with my nieces, and usually somewhat wimpishly resort to vouchers. Top Shop, Office, Mac, H&M, Cinema, Pizza Express gift cards have all been bought at various points. I found out recently that I was also amusingly known for giving predictable stashes of Jack Will’s pants. Even more amusingly the nieces were bemused by my real love of folding washing, and giggled at their pile of neatly folded freshly laundered pants (some Jack Will’s ones I am pleased to report!) whilst I was staying for the New Year.

This latest voucher is a new one on me. Liv’, youngest daughter assured me that oldest niece loved Lush, so that’s where we headed. The shop was SO busy and filled with mainly mid teens and their disposable income. I was so overwhelmed with the colour, smell and excited noise…. that I needed to make a purchase double quick! So Cress, hope you like the Coffee Mask (eat the truffles while you let it do its magic) and enjoy spending the voucher. I really do hope it’s what you want!

Top 5 Points For Buying The Right Thing
1. Don’t be shy, ask the Birthday Girl/Boy what they’d like as a gift. Don’t be fobbed off, ask for a list!
2. Buy a voucher. If unsure which voucher to buy, purchase one for a shopping mall (or large department store) so that the recipient can choose which shop/department to spend it in.
3. Online voucher is another option- Amazon perhaps (lots of choice)
4. If you buy a gift, many shops offer a gift receipt so that the gift can be exchanged. I put this receipt in a little envelope wrapped together with the gift. This way the recipient doesn’t have the embarrassment of having to ask you for the receipt if the gift is unsuitable.
5. If buying a voucher from a makeup counter (ie.. MAC, Benefit) ask the assistant if they could book in a free mini makeup session or some free samples to accompany the voucher.

PS. Sometimes you just don’t get it right- don’t beat yourself up, it’s the thought that counts!

2 Out Of 3 Nieces!, Rocking Dog

2 Out Of 3 Nieces!

Lush!, Rocking Dog

Lush!

Even Lusher!, Rocking Dog

Even Lusher!

Repurposing Things For The Home.

Broken Things Made Good, Rocking Dog

Broken Things Made Good

I’m sure by now you will know Rocking Dog loves old and battered. Always has and always will. I love repurposing things for the home, rather than buying shiny and new. HOWEVER, I do love to add in a few contemporary bits so that the house doesn’t feel like a fusty desiccated museum!

This week I found a new magazine on the shelves “Reclaim”. It purports to be for those readers wanting to create eclectic interiors using salvage finds. Quite lovely, but my heart still lies with “Country Living” and “World of Interiors”. This first issue really made me look at some of my accumulated crud, and just how long I have been living with a vintage interior (believe me it is no new trend, perhaps I was therefore an unknowing trendsetter!)

How I remember struggling onto a train with a heavy wooden cello case from Bath to Chippenham twenty five years ago. I do not play the cello, but it does make a stylish storage container! In the same month I struggled home with some heavy wooden postal sorting shelves on the same rail route. I had such stamina and determination in those days!

Particular loves include my Grandma Nellie’s wash tub which is currently filled with logs, but when Christmas comes along it transiently hosts the tree. Another log supply is currently neatly stacked aboard a wooden sledge. Alas, like me the old sledge is waiting for snow. Coal meanwhile is stored in a rather battered brass preserving pan, such a handy vessel for travelling to and fro from the coal bunker.

A recent purchase from the Saturday antique and flea market in Bath has been a pair of decorative brass deer hooks. I originally bought them as brackets for supporting a wooden curtain pole, but have since decided to go down the Roman blind route. As I handed over my £20 the stallholder said “You know what these are don’t you?” No was my bewildered answer, and he went onto tell me they were old brackets to wall mount a shotgun. I have absolutely no interest in bearing arms, so the brackets will be used to hang frivolous hats and bags! I must remember to buy brass screws to replace the nasty chrome ones.

In the kitchen I love my collection of old earthenware and china jars. These hold my whisks, spoons and assorted kitchen tools. I love the fact that they sport wording of foodstuffs we no longer commonly use. Tapioca, that word simply makes me shudder. A primary school pudding that would make so many children cry (we weren’t allowed out to the playground until our plates were cleared). If of course any of my beloved pots get broken they are simply kept until a mosaic’ing moment comes on. I have so many plans to spend days in the garden this summer doing some mosaic walls- so sun blessed and creatively therapeutic!

I love things with history, a sense of mystery and uniqueness. Who else houses their toothbrushes and paste in a vintage teapot I wonder!

Have a lovely Monday and hope its a great start to a great week.

PS Went to see the film “Room” at The Watershed last night. A brilliant film with an amazing cast, beautiful cinematography, but with the tension of the film leaving your tummy in a tight ball.

New Magazine, Rocking Dog

New Magazine

shoe last display rocking dog

Shoe Last Display

stepladder storage rocking dog

Stepladder Storage

Wash Tub For Logs..., Rocking Dog

Wash Tub For Logs…

....And Spring Bulbs, Rocking Dog

….And Spring Bulbs

Repurposed Coat Hook, Rocking Dog

Repurposed Coat Hook

Spoon Jars, Rocking Dog

Spoon Jars

Alas No Snow!, Rocking Dog

Alas No Snow!

Weight Paperweight, Rocking Dog

Weight Paperweight