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Monday, 27 September 2010

Home-made Vintage

Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt and photography by Lucinda Symons
Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt and photography by Lucinda Symons
Last month a lovely lady from illustrated lifestyle publishers, Ryland Peters &
Small
and CICO Books, contacted me to ask if I would be interested in receiving review copies of their books. So, I headed over to their site where I was greeted with titles like The Hummingbird Bakery Cookbook and Romantic Style by Selina Lake. How exciting!

I will be reading and reviewing a book a month from amongst their titles. Please note that my opinions are my own and I am not paid for these reviews (apart from receiving a free book, of course!).

This month I am reviewing Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt. The author is the founder of country-chic lifestyle store, Cabbages & Roses, started in 2008, and Christina worked in interior design and styling before that. I chose this craft book as I love Cabbage & Roses' style, which is nostalgic, romantic and subtly eccentric.


Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt
In my opinion this is a charming book adorned with a wealth of fabulous inspirational photographs. From using scraps of fabrics to beads and ribbons, it inspires you to create an individual country cottage style home with a mix of modern and vintage.

It contains over 40 quick and easy sewing projects. Each item is beautifully styled by Christina Strutt and photographed by Lucinda Symons, with dedicated home sections for making beautiful accessories for your living room, bedroom, bathroom and kitchen which will brighten up any dull space and add some vintage chic. There are also clothes and accessories and a section for gifts, including stylish kitchen aprons, darling rabbit dolls, kitsch bunting and treasured pencil cups.

Not only is it a gorgeous looking book, but it is filled with great original ideas you'll want to make. The adorable hand illustrated instructions by Kate Simunek are clear and easy to understand and with sewing instructions by Jane Bolsover you can't go wrong! In addition to the illustrations and instructions the back is filled with useful templates and stockists.

If you, like myself, are a hoarder of fabrics and trims there are also creative ways to display your delicious collections.

At a recommended retail price of £12.99, it is good value for money as it contains so many great ideas. A perfect gift for those who are taking their first steps into the world of sewing.

Some of the delightful projects I'd like to have a go at are:


Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt
Seat Pillow - I would like to make a pretty duck egg blue seat pillow for my office chair, and I'm loving the big bows that secure it in place.


Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt
Cutlery roll - With some of the fabric I have left from my outdoor cushions, I think it would be super cute to make a cutlery roll to hold my pink and blue cutlery for summertime picnics.


Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt
Garden tool apron - I have some scraps of stone and white spot oilcloth that would be great for the garden tool apron. It would also match my garden shed curtains! The book suggests using the eyelets from the straps to hang it up.


Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt
Hot water bottle cover - As the nights draw in and the temperature drops, I will be giving a warm welcome to my hot water bottle by giving it a new sage green cover to match my bedroom.
Tied pillow cover - I wish I had seen this earlier, as I would have done my outdoor cushions with ties instead of buttons.

To summarise, Home-made Vintage by Christina Strutt is a beautiful book full of quick and easy ways to transform your home and delight your friends with a touch of vintage charm. You will want to pick up a needle and thread and get started, even if you have never given it a go before!

Have a sweet day!
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Sunday, 26 September 2010

Aqua haberdashery

Aqua haberdashery
This week on Flickr Faves Sunday, I bring you beautiful aqua haberdashery treasures with these gorgeous pics. Check back soon for some more of the most inspirational photographers on Flickr.

Some beautiful shots from my Flickr favourites (clockwise from top left):

Have a sweet day!
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Wednesday, 22 September 2010

House Doctor Autumn/Winter 2010

House Doctor by Torie Jayne
Glass vases by House Doctor
Ceramic vases by House Doctor
Box files by House Doctor
Ribbon spools by House Doctor
Candle holder by House Doctor
Ribbon spools by House Doctor
This week for my 'shops i love' page I bring you yet another delightful Danish brand, House Doctor.

Their new Autumn/Winter collection, "Moment's", is a palette of nature-inspired faded yellow, berry tones and teal with pops of bright colours to give contrast and excitement. They also have a whole new range of gorgeous ribbons wrapped around wooden spools.

Available in the UK from Camel & Yak.

Have a sweet day!
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Sunday, 19 September 2010

Pretty Bright

Pretty Bright
This week on Flickr Faves Sunday, as it is the last official day of Summer I bring you a bright summery floral palette with these gorgeous pics. Check back soon for some more of the most inspirational photographers on Flickr.

Some beautiful shots from my Flickr favourites (clockwise from top left):

Have a sweet day!
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Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Day Birger et Mikkelsen Autumn/Winter 2010

Day Birger et Mikkelsen by Torie Jayne
Sofa by Day Birger et Mikkelsen
Cushions by Day Birger et Mikkelsen
Keys and tassels by Day Birger et Mikkelsen
Cushions by Day Birger et Mikkelsen
This week for my 'shops i love' page I bring you yet another delightful Danish brand, Day Birger et Mikkelsen.

Their new collection is a palette of peacock blue, teals, warm chartreuse, browns and pale grey-greens. With motifs of leaf and reindeer heads, beautiful wool embroideries and plush velvet, they make up a glamorous, vintage looking Autumn collection.

Have a sweet day!
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Sunday, 12 September 2010

Whoopie pies

Whoopie Pies by Torie Jayne
  1. Stonewall Kitchen carrot cake Whoopie pie mix
  2. Whoopie pies
  3. Whoopie pies by Sarah Billingsley and Amy Treadwell
  4. Raspberry-lemon Whoopie pies
  5. Classic Whoopie pies
  6. Whoopie pies

This Sunday I bring you a selection of pics from my Pinterest board, "Whoopie Pies".

Ever since I saw the title "The cupcake is dead. Long live the whoopie!" in The Times and various other articles like "Move aside cup cakes, whoopie pies are all the rage now" in the Telegraph, I have been intrigued as to what they taste like. I had bought some for my partner to taste but as I have a gluten intolerance the only way I was going to know was to make my own.

A whoopie pie (gob) is a sweet baked item which is a cross between a cookie and a cake. It is made up of two discs of round, pillowy soft, sweet cake-like cushions that are sandwiched together with a sweet, creamy filling.

A firm favourite in the US since the Pennsylvanian Amish baked them as a dessert for their husband's and children's lunchboxes in the 19th century: upon finding them they would shout "Whoopie!"

Traditionally, the cake part is flavoured with cocoa powder and made with brown sugar resulting in a dark brown finish, whilst the filling is very light and fluffy, often made with marshmallow fluff or marshmallow crème and flavoured with vanilla.

I bought the book, "Whoopie Pies" by Sarah Billingsley and Amy Treadwell which contains a vanilla flavoured gluten-free whoopie and a chocolate flavoured gluten-free whoopie amongst other non-gluten varieties. There are also plenty of ideas for fillings so you can mix and match at your pleasure.

I thought I would make the vanilla flavoured gluten-free whoopies with the classic marshmallow crème. But, as it is an American book I needed to translate the ingredients and find them! After a couple of weeks I tracked down the last ingredient, Fluff to make the marshmallow filling. Instead of buying the original vanilla flavoured fluff I bought the strawberry flavoured fluff. It was so pretty in pink, how could I resist!?

So in the end I made the vanilla flavoured gluten-free whoopies and filled them with a strawberry twist on the classic marshmallow butter-cream filling.

For those living in the UK, you can buy Fluff online from Shiny Shack.

Have a sweet day!
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Saturday, 11 September 2010

My garden details

My garden bird cages



Solar powered lights



Potted flowers



Bird plant trellis



Bird house tea light holder



Pink enamel pin wheel



Bird bath



Bird candlestick holder



Ice cream sundae tin sign


On Monday I showed you my garden transformation. Today, I am sharing all the details.

Have a sweet day!
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Sunday, 5 September 2010

Amethyst & Aqua

Amethyst & Aqua
This week on Flickr Faves Sunday, I bring you an Amethyst & Aqua palette with these gorgeous pics. Check back soon for some more of the most inspirational photographers on Flickr.

Some beautiful shots from my Flickr favourites (clockwise from top left):
Have a sweet day!
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