Tuesday, 30 March 2010

Almost Easter

I bought these cute knitted chicks & basket at a table top sale for the grand price of £1.50 for the lot...how can someone make them for that? Don't you just love the rabbit illustration in one of my vintage children's books?

I have been thinking about Easter eggs & how to present them - I'm trying to buy ones with as little packaging as possible again. Some of the eggs come with huge amounts of packaging - foil wrapped, enclosed in a hard plastic shell & then in a card box. I know the foil & box can be recycled, but what about all that plastic? I have noticed that the selection of simply foil wrapped eggs is growing (and there are always Lindt bunnies....)

I have come up with a couple of ideas, but as my children read my blog I'm not saying just yet!

In the meantime I thought I'd show you how I use my glass jelly moulds - they make super bowls for little eggs!

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Today's Visitor

This is the pheasant that thinks it is a chicken & lives with my neighbours flock. She obviously thought it would be fun to visit us in our back garden...it seems nobody has told her what Springer Spaniels are bred to do...luckily Lucy was inside so could only watch through the window!

Thursday, 25 March 2010

Newsletter Giveaway

Just a reminder that everyone joining my shop newsletter list this month will be entered into a draw to win a Coronation mug or cup candle. I will do the draw on the 1st April.

Miss Cottage is coming home for the Easter holidays today so we have decided to have a jaunt to London on Saturday to see the quilt exhibition at the V&A & to partake in a little shopping & refreshment!

Sunday, 21 March 2010


After buying the latest issue of 'Delicious' magazine I was dying to try out their macaroon recipe, so I made my first attempt at baking them today....the Aga does make making meringues a doddle.
They were surprisingly easy to make, although I think I used every bowl & spoon in my kitchen & I only used two colours - I couldn't find a raspberry or strawberry extract at the supermarket though - they only had lemon, orange & vanilla....any idea who sells other flavours?

As they were so pretty I had to take them into the sunny garden for a photo shoot.
It was a good excuse to get out one of my glass cake stands & other vintage goodies.

If you fancy having a go yourself you can find the recipe here.

Wednesday, 17 March 2010

New Shop Goodies

I have been busily restocking the shop so I thought I'd show you a few of my favourite picks!

First of all is this cheeky little chap - I already have 4 of these sailor boys so he has made it to the 'Second Childhood' section of the shop instead of being press ganged by the rest of the crew!

This is a fabulous rosy dressing table set in 'Boudoir' consisting of two candlesticks & a hatpin holder.

Vintage kitchenalia is always popular & this unused Tala whisk & vintage shelf paper will add retro pizzaz to your kitchen!

Another childhood favourite are lovely wooden puzzles & this bunny one would be a sweet chocolate-free Easter treat!

Anybody a Noddy fan? This little 1950's card is such fun.

For the embroiderers amongst us there is this lovely book in 'Vintage Sewing' which is chock-a-block full of unused iron-on transfers.

Back to 'Kitchenalia', these vintage recipe booklets have some great recipes - many of these are included in an old recipe book which my mum gave me & which she received as a wedding present in the 50's, so I can confirm that the recipes are easy to follow & that they work!

Finally, another 'Boudoir' treasure is this pretty china rose brooch - perfect on a summer cardigan!

Monday, 15 March 2010

Fanciful Fairies

Recently I have been fabulously fortunate in winning several fantastic giveaways & two of them featured fairies!

The one above is a fanciful drawing of a fairy & a teddy by the talented Karen of A Mermaid's Purse. Isn't it just adorable?

My second fabulously fairy-ish win was this pretty set of embroidered brooches by Corinne Phillips - Mabel, Florence & Polly will now be gracing the lapels of my jackets & coats!

Thank you both for such lovely giveaways & fellow bloggers please do visit their blogs to see more of their work.

Wednesday, 10 March 2010

Come into my parlour....

...for some tea & cake! I haven't done much on the domestic front for the past 6 weeks or so due to brokenfingeritis, but now that the splint is off I can do more. I haven't baked a cake for ages so I thought I'd whip up a coffee cake for afternoon tea.
The Boy loves his cup of tea when he gets home from school & of course you have to eat something with it after all those hours of using your brain & learning things!
I like to see a cake in my glass cake stand with dome - it just looks so very civilised don't you think?

So, perhaps you'd like to join me for a slice while I tell you a bit of my latest news?

As you know, I have an online shop which Mr Cottage created - he did a great job but the shopping cart software that we had wasn't brilliant so he decided to do it all again & has been working on it for the past couple of weeks - he calls it his "second job"!
It all looks very nice now - a bit different from before with a few new & improved features such as multiple photos, a search box & a mailing list.

One of the things I have been working on are my new range of Coronation Candles - these are natural soya wax candles made in vintage Coronation & Jubilee cups & mugs - some are genuine antiques dating back to 1902. You can find them here

As an introduction to my new shop I am having a giveaway - everyone who has joined or joins my mailing list (on the home page) this month will be entered into a draw for the Coronation Candle of their choice.

I thought I'd just offer you a peek of some of the new goodies on offer......

Vintage Easter tin

Gorgeous pyjama case Boudoir Doll

Vintage Easter cards

Sweet little beaded velvet evening bag

Harlequin egg cups

Hope you've enjoyed your cake & will pop into the shop for a browse!

Sunday, 7 March 2010

Dirty Dogs

Yesterday I showed you the lovely painting & photo of Lucy - it's a good thing I didn't have to send any photos taken today!
Mr C & I took the dogs for a long walk - we are fortunate in that we can just walk out of the front door & along the lane which means that they don't need leads - they are both good dogs & never run off.
Unfortunately the lane is rather muddy with big puddles of water & Lucy likes to go through every single one of them! Toby is a bit of a wimp & doesn't like getting his feet wet! As you can see in the next photo, Lucy runs straight through the muddy puddles but Toby runs along the dryer grass...

Ohno! My feet are wet!

Lucy investigating a ditch - I can't believe that she is 10 years old with no signs of slowing down. She did find a dead fox but I thought I'd better not show you that!

Oh it's going to be fun washing all that out of her coat - even her ears are dribbling mud!

These dogs are far cleaner! I found these three recently & had to adopt them - I think I'm turning into my Great Aunts who always had display cabinets full of china animals & nick-nacks....Granny (or Aunty) Chic?

Saturday, 6 March 2010

Lucky Win!

Recently Sam, of Silkie Sue blog held a fabulous giveaway - if you don't know Sam you should pop over for a visit as she paints lovely pictures & has also been creating some gorgeous new critters too.

Anyway, the giveaway was for one of Sam's paintings & even better she would paint whatever you wanted & I was the lucky winner! Woohoo!

Of course I had to choose to have a painting of my most beloved & lovely Lucy & didn't she do a great job? I sent Sam a selection of photos & this is the one she chose to do.

This lovely painting arrived mounted & framed & will take pride of place.
Thanks again Sam - I LOVE it!

Monday, 1 March 2010

Has Spring Arrived?

What a lovely sunny day we are enjoying today! It really lifts the spirits & for the first time in months it was actually enjoyable wandering down the garden to feed the chickens with scraps of bread & leftover pasta. Lots of daffodils are pushing their way upwards too so maybe spring is finally on it's way!

Speaking of spring - aren't the colours on this glassware Springy & Eastery?

Yesterday afternoon our village committee organised an afternoon tea at the village hall in aid of Arthritis Research - lots of people baked cakes & made sandwiches, the tables were decorated with blue checked cloths & pots of yellow primroses & a talented young lady played some relaxing music for everyone. It all went down very well & we raised a nice little sum for charity.

A while ago, before I broke my finger, I had volunteered to make the cup cakes. As it's a bit awkward doing things with one hand Mr C had to step in to help - he even helped do the cake decorating too! Before I whipped them off to the tea yesterday I piled them up on some of the vintage cake glass stands that I have been gathering together for the Spring Vintage & Handmade Fair - don't they look pretty all together?

I also made the egg mayonnaise for the sandwiches & everyone was commenting on how delicious they were - thanks to our happy hens of course. As a reward they received all the bread crusts to thank them for their efforts!