kitchen

Spice jars, bunting – and Daisy too!

by Helen on March 12, 2014

First of all, thank you so much to everyone who said such lovely things about my newly redecorated kitchen – so very kind of you all.  Lots of people also wanted to know about my herb and spice jars….

Now looking very smart on their newly repainted shelves.  I must admit that, until now, I didn’t know very much about them either as I inherited them a long time ago.  So I thought I’d do a bit of research …

I have a set of 24 jars and I use most (although not all) of them.  They sit on their own shelves which were a sort of boring brown wood shade before I repainted them as part of my kitchen makeover.  After some googling around I was able to uncover that they were made by an American company – Lenox – in 1989 and are known as the Lenox Spice Village.  The shelf I painted (probably a terrible thing to do!) was the original display shelf, and as well as these little houses, just 3″ tall, there were various larger cannisters for flour, tea, sugar, cookies and so on.  A lovely touch, I think is that the insides of all the lids are labelled with the jar to which they belong – so you can be sure that after washing you always return the correct lid to each jar….

They are just as beautifully decorated on the back and sides as they are on the front.  They’re also easy to find on eBay – as I discovered when doing my googling.  Full sets only seemed to be available from the US,  but I discovered odd jars on eBay UK.  The full sets are between $100 – $150 on eBay including the shelves.  

After all that googling and loving the Lenox village set, I thought that maybe my spice jars would be set off nicely with the addition of some of my own Village bunting…..

I’ve always found bunting to be one of the most difficult things to photograph.  First I tried in the garden – and after taking probably a couple of dozen photographs was only happy with this one.  So then I thought I’d try in the kitchen …

Better, but still lacking something.  Could that something perhaps be …..

The prettiest (and naughtiest!) little newfie in Chillington?  Perfectly posed – thanks Daisy!  

And if you’d like to make your own village bunting, the pattern will be in the April issue of the Bustle & Sew Magazine

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Hippos and roses – a day of two halves

by Helen on February 27, 2014

Yesterday was crisp and sparkling, so I decided to take the Newfies up to Blackdown Rings – an Iron Age Hill fort just north of Loddiswell – about 20 minutes from home.  The views from the top are stunning, you can see for miles and miles… 

walk01

 Though Ben and Daisy quickly lose interest – they’re eager to hurry along to their favourite part of this walk…  Soon after their invasion in 1066 the Normans built a motte and bailey castle on top of the old iron age earthworks and although all traces of their building have long since vanished (it would have been a wooden structure) a whole series of pits and hollows remain …..

walk03

 Which in the winter months fill with clear, fresh peaty rainwater.  THIS is what the Newfies adore.  

walk02

I think Daisy in particular has been watching too many nature programmes!  I am sure she’s pretending to be a hippo – and of course she isn’t content with swimming around once, but has to go back and do it all over again just to make sure I’m watching her!  

And yes, that is a brisk and bitter wind you can hear throughout this video – very sorry about that!  It was just a bit chilly down in the shelter of our village, but very cold indeed up on Blackdown Rings with a bitter north-westerly blowing straight from Dartmoor!  I was very pleased to return home, and begin work on the new blind for my kitchen window.  I’m redecorating, as you know, in honour of Rosie & Dan’s wedding.  My Cornishware jars look very pleased with their newly refurbished home ….

Kitchen redec well under way!

When I went into Kingsbridge to purchase header tape and blind cord for my blind, I was delighted to find 3 1/2 yards of vintage Sanderson fabric – the same that my parents had for their bedroom curtains way back in time!  And for just £5!  So I snapped it up – it works brilliantly with my pink gingham ….

Kitchen redec well under way!

I’m using it for a trim down the sides – and also for the lining – my blind will look just as pretty from the outside as in.  It’s still a work in progress, but I’ll be sure to show you when it’s done.

Kitchen redec well under way!

Perfect to show off on Rosie’s wedding day!

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A quick glimpse ….

by Helen on February 22, 2014

That is to say, two sorts of quick glimpses…  

The first …. looking out from the skylight at the top of my house I caught a glimpse of pink at the end of my garden.  Intrigued I pulled on my wellies and went up the old stone steps to investigate.  I was delighted to find that the fat green buds on my early flowering camellia had burst into brilliant bloom – and so I simply had to bring some indoors to enjoy …..

Pink Camellias

 They’re the same pink as my newly painted chair!  I’m in the middle of redecorating my kitchen in honour of Rosie & Dan’s wedding later this  year and was inspired by the lovely ice cream candy colours used at the Winking Prawn beach restaurant in Salcombe where I took them for Rosie’s birthday lunch ….. 

Winking Prawn Salcombe

 Will be sure to post pictures when it’s all finished!  And the second quick glimpse …. just a peek at the cover of the new issue of the Bustle & Sew eMagazine – that’s the March issue – to be published on Thursday….

I think it’s rather pretty (though I say so myself) and I do hope you’ll enjoy the projects.  I haven’t quite finished putting the preview together yet (my pesky slow internet is holding things up), but I’ll post it tomorrow so you can have a proper look at the contents.  

And finally …. I can’t possibly post about decorating without including a picture of my canine “helper” ….

Daisy helps with the painting!

 Yes .. it’s that naughty Miss Daisy – complete with pink streak!

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