torsdag, april 17, 2014

Toast & Marmalade



A lovely new book arrived just in time for Easter. 'Toast & Marmalade' by Emma Bridgewater (maker of beautiful English hand decorated kitchen pottery). A book, more for reading (as I supposed books are meant to be in the first place...) than for looking. Even though there are plenty of delightful photos too. A book about Emma's life and design, with a collection of warm stories of her family and about her business.



I have just started reading the book. But being of a curious and impatient mind, I have read several chapters, here and there, in no particular order. As Emma says it herself "You can either sit down to read this book from cover to cover, or dip in and out of it, piecing the stories together to experience the whole as a patchwork quilt".



Speaking of patchwork quilts... there is a whole chapter about Emma's quilts ("Life is a patchwork quilt"), which I have, of course, already read. And thoroughly enjoyed, I might add. Emma's quilts are delightful, made out of children's clothing, her mother's aprons, tablecloths etc. Fabrics full of history and memories (in the best possible patchwork tradition).



I have been fascinated by Emma, and what she has achieved, for the longest time. Over the years I have read various articles about her family life, and been charmed by her home. I do also love her beautiful pottery, and even though I do not own a single piece of her designs, I am rather in love with these bird mugs and hope to one day be the lucky owner of a robin mug... or a Rhode Island hen mug.



Meanwhile I'll enjoy reading the rest of this delightful book over the Easter holidays. Cover to cover, even though I still might do a bit of hopping to and fro. So far the book has been a lovely read, and I look forward to the rest of her stories.



(On an altogether different note... I've finally got more wool, so possibly I'll now be able to finish the blanket, once and for all...)

mandag, april 14, 2014

Sunshine



Sunshine...



Wild flowers...



Spring bulbs...



Bright house. Happy ;-)

torsdag, april 10, 2014

Easter treats



Easter is fast approaching... my favourite holiday. What is there not to love about Easter? It is spring, the days are long and light, the colours pretty and bright. And soon enough summer will be here.



My little Easter tree is decorated. With the same pastel coloured eggs as every year. And then the slightly bigger Easter eggs, to hold chocolate eggs and other Easter treats. I'm ashamed to admit that the first lot has already been devoured, so time to fill them up again...



The other day, on my daily walk with the doggie, I picked some birch branches (the third lot this spring ;-) for my little decoration. In no time (meaning only about a couple of days) the little delicate leaves emerged, all fresh and bright green.



If only we got a bit of warmth now (we've had quite a few rainy, rather chilly days lately), I'm sure the world outside would follow suit, and the whole landscape would turn this lovely fresh green colour. I can hardly wait.

Oh well, I think Zara and I will venture outdoors, despite the rain, to investigate the progress.

lørdag, april 05, 2014

Fickle



Oh, how I love this little spot we call home. And I love the beautiful spring weather we've had lately. Glorious all around. Yesterday I was sat here by the porch, enjoying spring sun and the glorious landscape...

... today it is raining and I am sat by the fire, nursing a cold... Spring weather can be so fickle. And potentially not all good for ones health...

Still loving spring though... and hoping the glorious weather will return soon.

onsdag, april 02, 2014

Spring fling



I'm really getting into all things spring. And spring (to me) is synonymous with pastel colours and tender growth. Now I am a fan of pastels all year round, but never more so than at spring time. And today I decided it was high time for me to (try and) bring a bit of spring cheer inside.



I started with this favourite wing chair of mine. Most of the time it is covered in a denim loose cover that I am most fond of. But the chair does have another 'frock' too. I made this white slip cover years ago, out of some old sheets. All was well until I washed the cover...



The piping I had used shrank, and I was left with a puckered up and (very) ill fitting loose cover (which ended up in a box in the attic). Until yesterday, that is, when I decided to unpick the whole thing, remove the puckered up piping, and stitch the whole thing back up again.



And I am so glad I did! Now I have a fresh (reasonably well fitting) white slip cover, to go nicely with all things pastel... cushion covers, loose covers, quilts and blankets. You name it. A spring fling with pastels. With some very tiny wood anemones, I picked today, thrown in for good measure. They are always such a joy, the very first ones.



So... I might have gone slightly overboard with the pastels and my spring fling. But you know what, I don't care. I just love, love this time of year. Probably the best there is. I do, of course, love summer (maybe even more), but with spring, all those lovely summer months are still ahead of us. Such a delicious thought, don't you think...

søndag, mars 30, 2014

High hopes...



We've had amazing spring weather these past few days. Blue skies, brights sun and (relatively) mild (15C). Not bad for March (which can be rather tricky here, weather wise, that is).



So of course, as always, I started dreaming of summer flowers. This time I decided to give my over wintering plants a head start.

The potato plants (in above photo) are well over ten years old, and flower beautifully every summer. I simply love the pretty purple blue flowers.



As I do my geraniums. There are, of course countless different varieties, but I tend to grow the white and pale pink ones. Along with the oh, so pretty 'apple blossom rosebud' variety (probably my favourite, but a little more tricky than the other two).



Every autumn I prune the geraniums and store them in an insulated out house, where I water them sparingly over the dark cold winter months. And hope, come spring, they will have survived, and are ready to grow and bloom again (not straight away, of course. In fact, it takes them quite a while to be 'up and running' again. Hence the hoped for head start...)



Since the day today was such a lovely one, I decided to bring the plants outside, for a bit of sun, and to check how they are coping, and whether they indeed have survived (I know the poor plants do not look very promising, but as often is the case, looks can be deceiving...)



I pruned them again (to remove pale, weak growth), watered and fed them, and was happy to discover that they do indeed look promising, save for maybe one geranium, which looks a bit worse for wear.



Not to worry... I have taken plenty of cuttings, and planted them in small pots today. Probably more than I need, but better safe than sorry...



And to give my good old ones the hoped for head start, I decided to turn my trusty old studio into 'a greenhouse'. The windows are south and west facing, so they'll get plenty of light, while the plants will still be protected from the elements (night frosts in particular, which are still bound to come around).



So I do indeed have high hopes for my geraniums this spring. And while they are welcome to take over my little studio for now, I will reclaim it again, come warm weather for good.

As for high hopes, hubby has been busy today too. He has made no less than six new bird houses today (all of them still in need of a coat of white paint), and he has high hopes that some day soon they will be occupied by new tenants too...

torsdag, mars 27, 2014

Living Life Beautifully



A new book landed in my mailbox the other day. A book that I have been waiting for with great anticipation for quite some time.



'Living Life Beautifully' by Christina Strutt of 'Cabbages & Roses'. And what a beautiful book it is. Well worth the wait.



Leafing through the beautiful pages gives me a delightful tingling feel. I'm thinking 'How cosy, how inviting. This is how I'd like my home to look like'. I love every page of this book, and I believe it is possibly the prettiest (and most inspiring) book I own.



I have been a great fan of Cabbages & Roses ever since I first came across the brand several years ago, still in its early days. The company has grown, and recently moved to new premises in London (121-123 Sydney Street).



I have had the pleasure of visiting the one on Langton Street several times, always brining home some pretty fabrics. While I wish I had a bigger suitcase and a larger wallet...

And now, if you'll excuse me, I'll make myself a cuppa, and read a bit more (as this book is not just pretty pictures, but the writing is well worth a read too... not always the case with decorating books). And attempt to live my life as beautifully as I can muster.