HOT SHOP: Clothkits

April 23, 2010

Haberdashery heaven…

Today, I was lucky enough to stumble upon the Clothkits website…and found myself in a crafter’s paradise. Check out these lovely Liberty print bias bindings on wooden spools and these lovely buttons – I’m not sure where to put them yet, but those moustache ones are irresistible!

If you need ribbons, cotton threads or sewing kits, there’s a huge range on offer…

Ooooh – I like the tape measure ribbon! The black one would look gorgeous sewn across the edge of a crisp white tablecloth, or tied around presents in fuchsia pink tissue paper. Have a lovely weekend – the sun is shining here in London, so I’ll be giving my shed a second coat of paint (very inspired by the lovely sewing shed over on Tales of a Junkaholic recently but not sure mine will look as lovely what with our lawn mower and all…SIGH) – I’ll be back on Monday with some VERY pretty styling ideas, but now it’s time to hit Soho and sit in the sunshine! – Ellie


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Detling Antiques Fair

March 2, 2010

You sacrifice your lie-in and get up at crack of dawn in the dark. You lug around bags of heavy coins. You have to endure cold wellies, freezing fingerless gloves and muddy burger-van coffee. And let’s face it, it’ll probably rain. But bargain hunting at an antiques fair is well worth the effort if you want to pick up some quirky one-off items to make your home look extra special…

At Detling IACF over the weekend I spotted so many lovely things. Check out these gorgeous vintage sewing storage drawers (sadly a bit out of my price range!) and pretty ceramic lids for tooth paste and anchovy paste. How amazing would the sewing drawers look in a craft room? And the lids would make cute coasters…

Haberdashery fans beware: there was a great range of vintage fabrics, old buttons, lace and needlework tools. I bought a delicate tape measure for styling purposes (it only has inches on it!) and some pretty buttons to add to my collection.

There were plenty of wooden printer’s blocks, and lots of elegant bottles and jars, and I spotted a beautiful vintage paint-box. I was really impressed by the range of stalls (although in addition to the vintage stalls there were a lot of traders selling collectable china dolls, lobsters, Disney characters etc which weren’t really my thang) and it only took an hour to get to Detling from London by car. I came home with: a pair of wonky antlers, some Observers books, a bag of pretty stamps (for craft purposes!), some buttons, and an old milk bottle with ELBOW FARM written on it to use as a vase. The boyfriend was delighted as always (NOT) with the latest batch of vintage tat, but I managed to smuggle most of it in except for the antlers. He just doesn’t GET it. I showed him the antlers trend page in the March issue of Ideal Home, and pointed out that antlers are everywhere now, even in high-street shops he’s heard of like M&S:

But he still doesn’t seem to appreciate One-Horn-Big, and says he’s not living in ‘a trophy-filled hunting lodge’. We’ll see. Remember, he said he wasn’t going to live in ‘a 1950s flipping village fete’ but that Union Jack bunting’s been up for almost a year now… – Ellie

Hot shop: DEE PUDDY

November 24, 2009

Dee Puddy has a fabulous name. It’s a bit like P Diddy, but cooler. Dee runs a lovely online shop, selling some wonderful little treats…

I like her vintage section in particular (surprise, surprise) and recently bought one of her little 1950s tea tins. You’ll spot some of these soon in the January issue of Ideal Home if you look closely. They were originally used for storing thousands of tea samples from North India, Malawi and Bangladesh. A small amount of each numbered batch was retained by the tea company for a year in case of any quality complaint from a buyer then, after the year had elapsed, the old samples would be tipped out and given or sold to staff. The tin I have still smells of tea! But I think I’ll be using it to store jewellery on my dressing table. I also bought a little ceramic ‘Buttons’ tag to tie to my jar of never-ever-used-or-needed-yet-lovely-to-look-at buttons:

And, since we’ve just officially launched Christmas on this blog, Dee does a lovely range of festive bits and bobs, too…

I was tempted by the French goose tape, because it goes so well with the goosey Thornback and Peel inspired (in other words, blatantly ripped-off) Christmas cards I am making. Should I tape each envelope shut? Shall I put a Hobbycraft feather in each card…? Hmmm. So many questions. What a very serious job I have. On a par with being an MP or a surgeon I’d say. Mwah ha ha haa. – Ellie

An invitation to a party

September 8, 2009

Here at Ideal Home, three of our team are leaving so we’re all having a big party this Friday night. I just wanted to show you the gorgeous invitation that Marie, our Deputy Style Editor who’s moving to Australia to go freelance, made:

inviteHow cute! Invitations from stylists are always the nicest, and this one’s so lovely it qualifies for ‘pin-on-the-noticeboard-of-joy’ status. – Ellie