Thursday, 29 September 2011

In praise of tablecloths and tea towels

Now Niobe is settling at Exeter I'm hoping to find some time to indulge in some admiration of my vintage bits and pieces! Today with all the glorious sunshine I've had the day off work and taken advantage of the great drying weather to wash some of my new tablecloths.

Although these are probably 50 years old I think they still work well today. Love the colours on this and the fine stitches...

edged with cotton lace

Suspect this was stitched by a Scot - or is that too much of a cliche? Either way great thistles!

These four photos look as if they are from different cloths

but they are in fact four corners

of the same cloth.

Found in a charity shop this week. Unfortunately not charity shop prices but I couldn't leave this one behind! Charity shops around here certainly seem to have increased their prices and given their best stuff seems to go on e-bay these days not sure that they can justify some of the prices they are asking for!

Onto a couple of tea towels I've been sent by the lovely people at I was asked to choose a couple from their range and in honour of one of our guilty pleasure I chose this unbleached cotton image of the iconic Tunnocks Teacake. (Can you have an iconic teacake? I think so!)

I also chose this one featuring a poster from the 1948 Olympics. This site has a great choice of tea towels should you be in need. They wash well, dry well and for me, more importantly, look good hanging in the kitchen! Have a look at their large range of styles for all tases - not easy to choose!

Hope you're making the most of the glorious weather!

Monday, 19 September 2011

My new companion

I had a lovely time at Northampton's Vintage and Handmade Fair but completely forgot to take any pictures. So I thought I'd share my finds with you.

Do you know what it is? I've been looking for some of these for ages. I only managed to find one but snapped it up straightaway. It'll be known to the flower arrangers amongst you as a flower frog but either you dont see many these days or I'm looking in the wrong places. I suspect there are lots languishing in people's sheds. "And what are you going to do with that thing?" I hear you ask?

Why my dears doesn't it make just the perfect photo holder? I love this picture. Sorry it's not a good picture of a picture but you get the idea. A great snapshot of a little boy, yesteryear, seeing the world from a different angle!

In case I get lonely when Niobe's away at uni this typewriter promises to be "The good companion " in her absence. We'll see!

I haven't tested it yet and don't expect it to work for one minute so it won't come under the useful category. Or will it? I think it too makes a great display stand. It is currently holding the envelope of a letter (posted 1922) to my Great Aunt, who succeeded my Great Grandfather as Registrar of Births and Deaths locally. I don't have the letter, just the envelope but think that's lovely in it's own right.

I think it too makes a great display stand. It is currently holding the envelope of a letter (posted 1922) to my Great Aunt, who succeeded my Great Grandfather as Registrar of Births and Deaths locally. I don't have the letter, just the envelope but think that's lovely in it's own right.

Later this week I'm expecting distant cousins interested in family history coming to visit. I think they will like this little vignette incorporating her photo...

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Ticking 'n tweed

On Sunday I took off for a much anticipated workshop at Hope and Elvis. This one was called Tweed Bags. I've blogged about Louise's workshops before and always have a great time. I always take along my basket loaded with vintage bits and pieces that I've collected to incorporate somehow.
We were able to choose from a selection of styles.

Not restricted to tweed you could use any of a whole shelf full of fabrics to make any of these beauties...

As usual I had the problem of having to make too many decisions - which fabric, which lining, long or short handles, to embellish or not etc, etc...

Louise provides the fabrics, trimmings, equipment etc but it's always lovely to use some of your own bits.

Was I going to be able to turn these fabrics into anything resembling any of these lovely bags?

I chose a charcoal grey suit jacket which I thought would coordinate nicely with a piece of my ticking stripes and perhaps a piece of barkcloth. I'd also taken with me an old Tootal scarf to use. Normally that would be sacrilege but I'd managed to set the tassels on fire when cooking a while back so couldn't wear it anymore. Several hours later - this...

This picture shows the front bottom of a jacket with pocket as one side of the bag

with the reverse being a breast pocket. As it was a breast pocket I used a piece of vintage fabric to masquerade as a pocket handerchief. The lining was the remains of the Tootal scarf with the label being used to embellish the other side. Ticking was incorporated where I didn't have sufficient fabric/or for contrast with barkcloth being added to the handles.

The day was particularly lovely as I met Diane from heartshaped

Diane was so sweet and thoughtful - she had bought her blogging buddies gifts and mine included a bottle of sea glass which she knows I've never maaged to find on the east coast. I was really touched that somebody had bothered to do this for me!

I also met Lyn from everyday life, Nik - Diane's 'lurker' friend, and Debs from Two bones and a bagle. Debs helps Louise at the workshops - what a great job - surrounded by all that loveliness!

I can never resist taking pictures of the studio where Louise sells some of her lovely finds

and will confess to picking up a couple of pieces of Pink Utility - oh and a piece of yellow. Well - just look at the picture in my side bar - I obviously needed more didn't I?

Now looking forward to the Vintage and Handmade fair in Northampton on Saturday - hope to see some of you there!

Love Wend

Wednesday, 7 September 2011

The power of the text message

I have an old mobile and am always having to delete texts to enable me to send others becasue I retain too many special or funny ones. But today I decided that I would actually put some of Niobe's onto a document so I could save them and clear them off my phone. Now I've typed them up I see them as a small snapshot of our relationship and I'm glad I've done it. Here are some of my favourites from the last couple of years...

Just been talking to Paul Daniels and Debbie McGee! Strange. X

Glad you’ve not crashed yet! Xxx

Crazy rain!!!! I’m wearing flipflops!

Dalai Lama on the bus! X

I need you. I’ve never had so much to do :( xx

Mum I’m so sorry, I don’t want to ruin your evening which I hope you’re enjoying but I took the opportunity of you not being there to practice on the sewing machine as I was going to use it for your xmas present. I think the needle has snapped or something. So sorry. If I remember correctly this always used to happen in textiles and didn’t seem to be too much of a problem. I’ll pay for what it takes to fix it. Sorry I shouldn’t have used it without your permission I just wanted to practice as I really wanted to make you something for xmas. Love you xxx


Also I could really have done with a chat today, just to let you know – not to make you feel bad or anything xx

HAPPY BIRTHDAY I LOVE YOU MASSES YOU OLD DRUNKxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx (it was my 50th!)

Overnight in a cold tent I have a hoody on and socks but must admit the socks have let me down.
:( xx

Come soon, I’m cold, xx

I’m moving to the sea.x

Just had a career lesson. Want to open a tea shop in Southwold. Xx

Why is it that people say something & it goes in one ear and out the other. But then someone else says it and you believe them? Not a rhetorical question. I’d like an answer. LY.xx

What happened to the bacon butties?

I need a hug when I get home. Xx

Hi Mum. I missed you today. It’s been raining all day and all my stuff is soaking . :( Walked so far today. I am dead. I needed you in my pocket earlier :( xxx

The pocket reference is to a message I gave when she was little - that if she was ever alone and afraid and needed me all she had to do was put her hand in her pocket and squeeze very hard and she should be able to feel me squeezing back and know what she had to do next. And nobody would know...I didn't expect her to be doing it for so many years!

Does anyone else do this? I'm hoping she won't mind my sharing these!