Monday, 30 July 2012

Strawberry Flan

 This is the strawberry flan I made for tea last night. I had to photograph it as it looked so pretty. I confess the flan case was shop bought so it was quick and easy to make. I actually prefer eating it the day after when the sponge has absorbed all the juices. Hopefully there'll be a slice left for me to enjoy with a nice cup of tea and a good magazine later today!

Thursday, 26 July 2012

Charity Shop Finds

I picked up this lovely Alfred Meakin Sunflower cake stand in the charity shop last week for £4. It matches the Sunflower side plates I bought from the same shop back in February. I wonder if they came from the same home? It's nice to think that they did.
Another embroidery hoop for 50p. 
 A vintage teddy bear pattern for 10p. I just love the packaging.
The pretty embroidered tablecloth is one I picked up at a bootsale many years ago.
Yet more buttons and some fabric flowers.
A really pretty fabric flower which I hope I can incorporate into a sewing project sometime.
I was very excited to find this lovely lace. 
This particular charity shop has a dedicated sewing section and I've picked up some lovely bits from there recently. 

I couldn't resist this pretty (crochet?) edging which has probably been cut from an embroidered tablecloth. 
Hopefully I'll be able to put it to good use after all the hard work which must have gone into making it.
Hope everyone is having an enjoyable week.

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

A Present from my Sister

 Some of you may have noticed this pretty vintage table runner in some of my recent posts. It was a present from my lovely sister who visited a few weeks ago

It has the most amazing embroidery.
I really don't know how she managed to part with it!
 It's going to take pride of place on my farmhouse table with a lovely vase full of flowers.

My sister also bought me a pretty hanging heart made from shells and beads,
some 'made with love' ribbon to sew onto my handmade items
and some vintage style tags.
She also surprised me by booking tickets for the two of us to see the Beach Boys in concert at the Royal Albert Hall in September! I've never been to a 'proper' concert before so I'm really looking forward to it. 

Thursday, 19 July 2012

Sweet Blue Bird Fabric

I visited Hobbycraft last weekend and picked up this pretty 'Blue Bird' fabric by 'The Henley Studio'. 
Not sure what I'll be using it for yet but it was too pretty to resist.
I also treated myself to this little book on making bunting by Kate Haxell which is full of lots of lovely inspiring projects for £4.99.
We've had a busy week with school trips and end of term activities. Just looking forward to the sunshine we've been promised at the weekend and the beginning of the summer holidays! Hopefully a nice lay in on Sunday (unless there's a good boot sale on...)

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Charity Shop Finds

Some recent finds....
 A sugar shaker (possibly Jersey Pottery but the mark is unclear),
a glass jar with lid for storing odds and ends, 
a book with lots of scrumptious ideas for afternoon teas...I might just have to make some scones this weekend! 
A cross stitch book full of simple, quick designs which would be lovely to make into button covers of brooches. 
 A 'Vulcan Ware' vase. The pattern on the vase is a little unusual but it appeals to me and I love the pink glaze on the interior.
 A really pretty 'everlasting' calender which I've put up on my mantlepiece,
an old needlework box... 
 and some sewing bits and bobs. The pincushion on top of the box is in the shape of a crown with a tape measure at the base. There is a missing 'jewel' in the centre which I think may have been a thimble.

A wooden sign with a peg to hang up a pretty picture or note, 
a cross stitched tablecloth, 
and lots of doilies. 
I've been collecting these for a while now to make some bunting which I started recently.  

Two 'Portmerion' storage jars with wooden lids... 
and three pretty dresses for fabric.
Lots to keep me busy!

Monday, 9 July 2012

Towering Hollyhocks

I had a little stroll around the allotment last week and discovered these beautiful hollyhocks.  
So reminiscent of cottage gardens and they always remind me of hand embroidered linens. I'm very tempted to get my sketchbook and watercolours out or to start stitching. Very inspirational. 
 Grown with the roses they look magnificent.
 The wooden structure at the end of the path houses our compost toilet which was officially opened last year. Quite a unique feature!
 Wild poppies and grasses.
 A display of sunny marigolds. They look so outstanding en masse.
English Lavender. 
My little stroll certainly made me feel better.

Friday, 6 July 2012

Sweetpeas from the Allotment

I visited my allotment on Thursday for the first time in a few weeks and picked my first bunch of sweetly scented sweetpeas. I love them!
I also picked some rhubarb.
 The courgettes have grown so much they are beginning to dwarf the lettuce which I planted as an intercrop. I think the deep soil and fresh compost has helped as well as the layer of wet newspaper I added to help suppress the weeds. 
Some growers plant their pumpkins straight into the top of their compost heaps, like this one, with great results. Make sure the compost is well rotted though - don't plant into fresh manure.
I picked my first three baby courgettes of the season. When they are this small and fresh they are lovely sliced and eaten raw.
My beetroot and lettuce are also growing well in a raised bed although not ready to pick yet.
 My willing helper(!) cleared the onions in this patch for me and helped plant some dwarf beans. My first two sowings rotted due to the cold, wet weather so I shall have to plant some more to get enough to freeze.
 The Feverfew was looking very pretty. This is the single flowered variety.
The one at the back is a double flowered variety which self seeded last year along with the Sisyrinchium in the centre.
 Everywhere I looked there were beautiful self seeded poppies in all sizes and colours. These were growing on the old onion patch.

Thank you for all your lovely comments and I hope everyone has a lovely weekend with not too much rain. At least I don't have to water the allotment!