Tuesday, 29 July 2014

A change of heart....

Well summer holidays are upon us, mums , dads and grandparents too are crazily planning activities and outings to keep the young ones entertained. As one blogger I have just read quite rightly stated, it would be very difficult to limit the amount of time  the children  sit at computers and play on other gadgets if we don't do the same so I am using my evenings to catch up on blogging and sewing etc so that I can enjoy this glorious weather with them out and about.
It's funny how limiting your time seems to inspire you to greater activity, at least it does me, and I have done more sewing and crafting in the past week than I have for ages.
 Do you remember my attempt at the Collette Sorbetto top. I wasn't very impressed at first. The amount of alterations I had to make to the pattern somehow spoiled the feel of the finished top. However not one to give up and believing that it did have some redeeming features like the bias bound neck and absence of any fastenings, I decided to have another go. Since I stopped making my slippers to sell, I have boxes of lightweight cottons which would have been used for linings, going to waste. Some of these are very pretty and crying out to be made into something wearable. In the end I chose this chocolate spot fabric as I had quite a bit, so it wouldn't matter too much if I messed up. Luckily I was easily able I recreate the pattern in my own proper size, and even had enough fabric to make a simple skirt. For the skirt I used a New Look pattern 6051 which has a super collarless zip up jacket and trousers too.

 Though it must be a bit ancient, as I cant seem to trace this version at all on the internet! Must make sure I hang onto this one.

I love the contrast fabric  used as bias binding and continued the theme by making the waist binding and ties for the skirt from the same fabric.
Not bad out of 1.5 metres of main fabric and .5 metre of contrast for the binding. So all in all I think the top pattern will get well used after all, and of course it was free!

I've also made a few more pieces of recycled collage jewellery. This is a new venture for me and I'm still finding my feet and though it will never replace sewing, it is something I would like to continue with and develop. I' m also pretty proud of the necklace stands I've made out of cardboard and fabric scraps . I found the tutorial at 'Cut out and Keep' but cant seem to find it now. There is another one here though and it makes photographing and displaying them so much easier.

Next I repainted a Lloyd loom style chair in duck egg blue and recovered the seat in a pretty patchwork of duck egg blue and bright pink. I'm quite pleased with the result especially the colour combination.Shame the squares didn't quite line up, but it is supposed to be rustic looking !

My final project this week is a cushion cover made from 1950s curtain fabric finished off with a cute mini Pom Pom braid which will be up for sale in our pop up shop.

So a busy week crafting and sewing as well as looking after our gorgeous grandsons!
Sometimes a girl can have altogether too much fun!

Hope yours is half as good
Jenny xx

Saturday, 12 July 2014

COMING SOON A Date for your Diary....

WHOOPEE!!!!      A POP UP SHOP......

We have at last organised it. OLIVE and EDNA's VINTAGE EMPORIUM is having a pop up shop at

Liberty Rose Tea Room
22-23 Market Place
NG31 6LP

DATE  9 August 2014

TIME 10am to 4pm

Make a note in your diary if you are in the Lincs, Notts, Leicester area as we would love to see you.
The building is one of the most beautiful old shops here in Grantham and includes the really pretty tea rooms where you can pause for beverages and delectable cakes ( including chocolate and beetroot which I highly recommend) and also browse around one or two other permanent vintage and vintage style shops on the first floor.
We will be right at the top offering everything from chairs to ladders, suitcases and crockery, kitsch ornaments and vintage jewellery. There will also be a few OOAK collage necklaces made from preloved, rescued brooches, earrings etc.

We would love it if you would give us a shout on either Facebook or Twitter too, the more successful we are on the day, the more likely we are to be back again.
Hope to see you there

Jenny and Heidi

Thursday, 3 July 2014

Holy Mackerel.........

Feeling a bit down?...........

Child of the fifties...or just wished you were.............

Loved 'Call the Midwife'.......

Well may I just recommend this tonic......bought it today... for my Kindle...........99P no less, and since dinner I have not been able to put it down!!

HOLY MACKEREL...............Babs Horton

Image from Amazon

The  'Product Description ' had me hooked even before I had read a word....................

Life is looking up for the inhabitants of a small Welsh town. Wales have won the Grand slam, sausage rationing has ended, pear drops are on sale again in Mrs Yandle’s Candy Emporium and a birth control clinic has opened in Cardiff. Then, the news arrives that the Pope has dispatched a band of zealous Irish priests on a mission to eradicate filth and depravity, which is a crying shame because people are just getting to like it. A frisson of fear sweeps through the Catholic congregation and one newly married woman, already in terror of eternal damnation for marrying a protestant heathen, hurries home from confession at the Church of Immaculate Conception and burns her contraceptive device.
Hence, the hero of this story arrives in the world, feet first on a Sunday morning, weighing in at eight pounds thirteen ounces of goose-pimpled flesh, smaller than the Christmas turkey but twice as slippery.
Her mother’s hopes of a sweet, compliant daughter, a golden haired angel in disguise are swiftly dashed by the antics of this dervish of a child with a face like a scalded monkey, the legs of a prop forward and the lungs of Paul Robeson. All that’s missing are the three 666’s on the nape of the neck.
Aided in her unladylike escapades by her cousin Joyce Titley, the oracle of all dubious knowledge, who came last in the Bonny Baby competition of 1946, they set out to unravel the mysteries of life, death, sex, nakedness and the mysteries of menopausal mothers.
Until, an episode with an Ouija board summons the voice of Auntie Mary Muttonchop from beyond the grave, bringing startling news that will change both their lives forever.

Words courtesy of Amazon

OK so I was a child of the era, and so much of the book rings so true, but most of all I have laughed....and laughed and am still laughing!

Irreverent, rude and thoroughly entertaining.
 I have recommended her Dandelion Soup several times on this blog as a really good read, a brilliant tale of mystery and the mystic, and this 'Holy Mackerel' is about as far as you could get from that book, but in its own way is a gem. I thought it was just going to be another tale, but it is more like a diary of growing up in the 50s.

If you are game for a laugh, give it a go, I'm sure you will still be smiling days after you finish it, which I haven't yet so do excuse me I am off to a corner to giggle some more...................

Jenny xx

Sunday, 29 June 2014

The Grand Tour - Cornwall part 2

Well after our drenching the previous day, Wednesday dawned bright and sunny and turned out to be the hottest day of the week! Typical as our next call was to the Eden project. Our companions had been here before but were so amazed at how the whole of the former quarry had now been developed that the trip was as enjoyable for them as us.

We started , as you do, with a coffee and cream scone in the delightful dining area. Outside there were individual tables but inside it was set up a bit like a school refectory and the food on offer was a real treat. Often these places are very pricey for what is usually mediocre food, but not here.

Duly refreshed we tackled the tropical zone first. What an amazing array of plants and we were lucky to find most of them in flower.

The heat was quite overpowering so the gushing water was a welcome relief offering a little cooling spray as you passed. Obviously some people find it all too much and they provide a cool room half way round for you to take a breather.

The outside areas are devoted to more familiar plants and part is set out as an allotment with its own quaint potting shed.


All together it was a very interesting experience,

Our next port of call was the Lost Gardens of Heligan. Now I am not sure if we perhaps visited it at the wrong time, many if the larger shrubs were just going over, but though I love gardens and the weather made the tour round very pleasant, I wasn't as bowled over by them as I thought I would be.
Don't get me wrong they were very pleasant to visit but not as spectacular as I had imagined from all the publicity they receive.

I loved the jungle walk and the kitchen gardens, but I think I preferred the gardens at Lanhydroch over all.

On our return to base we called at Fowey. I had often seen glimpses of it on these house hunting programmes and the reality this time certainly matched my image.

It is stunning. However you do need calves like a weightlifters to manage the hill down into the town (and back up again). The small selection of boutiques and shops is a delight and the harbour and estuary with all the boats is picture perfect. My photos don't do it justice at all.

We finished our little break with a trip to Truro, and a bit of retail therapy, which was all for our grandchildren and not us at all!. Truro is a lovely city.

The cathedral is beautiful and there are some lovely buildings. It boasts a fair sample of decent shops and was very pleasant despite the fact that by now the weather had reverted to our good old British norm: grey skies and drizzle!

However our spirits were definitely not dampened and we were all happy to slip back a little into childhood as we treated ourselves to a trip on the Launceston steam railway. Not a long journey by any means but a pleasure for all that.

 We did visit one other place while we were here and I am sure there will be many who recognise it instantly

Port Isaac... a shame we didn't actually meet Doc Martin, but we did visit the school, which is a cafe and bar and enjoy a cold drink talking to the barmaid about the experience of having the film crew there.
And I have to say she was very complementary!

Well that was it. We were so sad to have to pack our cases and return home, but once there with the kettle on it wasn't so bad and we have next years holiday to start planning now......although of course I have to tell you about our trip 4 weeks later to Northumberland again and Hadrian's don't go too far....

Jenny xx

Thursday, 26 June 2014

The Grand Tour........Cornwall

Well I do hope you are in for the long haul, 'cos these next couple of posts are a bit picture heavy and wordy!
I have been very fortunate over the last few years to visit some beautiful parts of our British Isles, but I had never been to Cornwall until about a month ago. I can't believe that it is already 4 weeks since we came home the time has simply flown by.
We stayed in a lovely barn conversion in St Tudy just outside Wadebridge, a pretty market town on the river Camel.

Imagine living in one of those apartments, what a stunning view over the river and a public park on this bank! Of course the glorious sunshine really showed it to its full advantage.

Our first full day was taken up with no less than four car boot sales, again in glorious sunshine. (Take a look at my previous post for pictures of some of our finds.) The last one which was an afternoon start was at Lanhydroch. As we were leaving we saw the signs to the Lanhydroch House, which is part of the National Trust and so we thought we would check it out. We were so glad we did as it turned out to be a stunning house and gardens, with a lovely tea room and off road cycle tracks. You can even hire bikes there.

The house was previously a private residence of the Agar-Robartes family, and despite a devastating  fire in 1881the house was restored and used as a family home until the families decline during the First World War when several members of the family including the heir to the estate were killed.The house passed into the hands of the National Trust in 1953.

Love the way that some of the history is painted onto objects or embroidered as on this tea towel!

The following day was a little  more overcast as we made our way to Boscastle...Such a picture postcard village, it is hard to believe the devastation caused by those floods 10 years ago!

We called into one of the local shops and was shown where the water level came to ....above the doors. Even though we have all seen the film dozens of times it is very hard to imagine what those few minutes must have been like.......

Then next we were off again and this time to Tintagel the legendary birth place of King Arthur. At this point I feel I should point out that although we may not have clocked up miles of walking on this holiday we certainly made up for it in the amount of climbing we did!

The views certainly made the effort worth while though I sometimes question peoples intelligence when you see families with young children wearing flip flops and elderly people with crutches, in high heeled boots climbing something like this!!!!

 On the Tuesday we had decided to cycle the Camel trail to Padstow a round trip of about 11 miles. So we duly arrived at the cycle hire shop to be told we could have any bike there as they didn't think there would be a rush as the weather forecast was so rubbish that day. It looked fine at the time and we all agreed, 'What's a bit of rain, it won't hurt us', and duly paid up and mounted our bikes.

Famous last words..... about 5 minutes in the heavens opened, a complete cloudburst. We got soaked right through to our underwear despite the fact that our coats were supposed to be waterproof. Well our intention had been to cycle to sorry Padstow, have fish and chips near the harbour and a wander round and then cycle home. For some reason we rather changed our plans, cycled there, turned straight round and cycled back, went home, showered and changed and then drove to Padstow by which time of course the sun had come out and it was a glorious afternoon.

 Do you recognise this shop.... the subject of 'The Fixer' Alex Polizzi. Loved that series, wonder if it is still doing well!

So that's part one of 'The Grand Tour'. Hope I haven't bored you rigid, but must say I am in need of a drink now. In part two we visit Eden and Heligan and even manage a trip on a steam train.

Bye for now, have a good week where ever you are,

Jenny xx