Tag Archives: London

Mumsnet Blogfest 2014

IMG_4259.JPGThis was the third time I’ve been and I think it was the best so far. It’s an amazingling swish and polished event with 450 women (and the odd man). Lots of speakers, workshops and great food.

IMG_4262.JPGI went with Lindsay Miller from http://www.reddesk.co.uk and we had a brilliant day.
I hold a very special place in my heart for Mumsnet as it was an invaluable source of information, comfort, support and belly laughs a few years ago during a very bad time.

IMG_4263.JPGThe highlight for me this year, apart from the food which amazing as always, was a session with Camila Batmanghelidjh , Suzanne Moore and Francesca Martinez. They were funny, joyful (and triumphant) and those 3 women together was quite a brilliant ménage a trois of superbness.

IMG_4261.JPGTo be sashaying around in the fantastic Kings Place in the ever evolving and stunning Kings Cross on a dull November Saturday was an absolute treat and just look at the contents of my goody bag ūüôā
Thanks mumset (and Justine)

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Filed under Patchwork Quilts

Mumsnet BlogFest November 2013

On Saturday I went to mumsnet blogfest. http://www.mumsnet.com/blogfest with Lindsay from http://www.reddesk.co.uk/.

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We went last year too which was the first time they did it and it was very lavish and impressive. This year it was in Kings Place which is a massive swish building in nearby Kings Cross. I’m not one for big corporate events at all but I started blogging (with Lindsay’s help) about 2 years ago so it’s a lovely day out with lots of blogging tips and talks plus panels of interesting people and lively discussion.
As different as everyone there is, we all have one thing in common…..that we’re interested in social media. A few months ago I’d have felt a bit of a twit using that expression as it seemed a bit twatish but I don’t think it is any more. It’s progression whether we like it or not and with Linday’s help I’m vaguely managing to keep up by the skin of my teeth.

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About 400 people, mainly women attend from all over the country and we were treated like kings with as much tea, coffee and biscuits as we wanted.
I’m very comfortable in the company of women and it’s all very relaxing and friendly. It was superbly organised like last year and worked like clockwork.

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I’ve had a great affection for Mumsnet since 2008 when I stumbled upon it by accident at a time of crisis and I found more support there than I knew was possible. It’s a massive place of support, friendship and laughter as well as spats, rows, entertainment, help and lots lots lots more. I shall always be grateful to Mumsnet and in turn I also lent my support to women in crisis who had no where else to turn.

Anyway, the lunch on Saturday was out of this world just like last year, and the puddings were sublime.

Jo Brand, in her role as feminist comedian was there at the end to finish off the day with some funny anecdotes and a Q&A which was a huge thrill for me as I adore her, especially in her series Getting On.

On leaving everyone was given a heaving goody bag full of lovely things. Needless to say the champagne truffles have all been eaten And I love the nail varnish ! Just my colours.

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Thank you Mumsnet. I’ll be back. Xxx

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Filed under Miscellaneous

Muswell Hill Saturday Market, June 2013

2013-06-08 12.26.13This lovely market is on the second Saturday of every month in “The Village” pub 258, ¬†Muswell Hill Broadway N10 3SH. It’s large, and airy and free to enter, 12-5pm.

These are some of the stalls which caught my eye last Saturday.

Above is the most amazing cross stitch by Emma Congdon ¬† http://etsy.me/194kKdp ¬†This photo doesn’t do it justice at all. Emma sells the kits for people to do themselves and this Muswell Hill one is brilliant.

2013-06-08 12.29.39Marcia Knight makes the most beautiful children’s clothes and sells wool too in scrumptious colours.

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2013-06-08 12.31.34Look at these beautiful dresses !!!  https://twitter.com/Yarnsulike

2013-06-08 12.57.57There was a stall run by a mother and daughter from Margate who sell postcards and little mirrors etc of photos they’ve taken. I bought some of the ice cream and flake cards which are absolutely adorable. ¬†http://www.curlabouttown.com/

2013-06-08 12.37.37Frances Cronin makes these sweet and lovely little rabbits !! There were lots of them but I like the ones in dresses best. I love taking pictures of people’s things for my blog because I like chatting to the lovely people who make things. It’s something they do because they (and me) love ¬†making things. It’s for love, not money.¬†https://twitter.com/franwen

2013-06-08 12.59.02Annemarie Fearley had a stall outside and makes bright colourful owls and other animals with vintage fabric. Lovely for a child’s room or anywhere in the house.¬†https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shes-Got-it-Made/158449937537923

2013-06-08 12.48.47On the way out I bought a box of mixed cakes to take home. I’ve bought from this stall before so I knew they’d be good.

2013-06-08 12.49.14They were all made freshly that morning and the little cheese cakes were out of this world.

There were lots more stalls and it’s a lovely atmosphere but it’s never as busy as it should/could be. ¬†It’s quite a new market so hopefully word will soon spread¬†http://muswellhillmarket.com/

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Filed under Muswell Hill, London, UK

Brick Lane and Spitalfields

spittalfields market 002This is where Jane and I started the day. I’d never been to Leon before.

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The food was nice and I love the graphics and illustrations they use,

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but this is what impressed me most. A lovely postcard with this printed on the back. I think every eatery  should have them.

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Lovely original shop front over the Ben Sherman shop.

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I asked a very handsome man if I could stroke his Chiwawa. Not really my kind of dog but it was so sweet I’m sure I could be converted.

spittalfields market 007We had a wander round Rokit  vintage clothes shop

spittalfields market 011went to a little vintage market….

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saw this gorgeous street art under a bridge….

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and went to one of our favourite shops call The Shop which is full to the brim with old table cloths, silk scarves etc all very neatly folded but not in an intimidating way where you’re afraid to touch.

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Beautiful old shop drawers in The shop.

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Lovely old cinema seats….

spittalfields market 019I Can’t remember what this shop’s called but it’s on a corner and it’s worth a visit.

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This shop really did rock ! It was lovely weather like today and they were playing records on an old turntable outside.

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Downstairs were hundreds of old books nicely stacked on shelves all very cosy,

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We then stumbled upon an amazing looking huge cake shop called Kahaila and had tea and cake.

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It has gorgeous yellow walls with beautiful prints hanging.

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We went in to the famous Beigel Bakery

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where we allowed a quick look in the back room to see them making the beigels.

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They were so friendly. This is the owner who started the shop about 40 years ago.

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It was a privilege to be able to see them at work and it was so busy as usual.

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The owner of this shop told me that these photos were from the sixties magazine “Queen”, later to become Harpers and Queen.

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A street artist was painting a wall in Bacon street

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and then a bright orange neon fronted shop caught my eye.

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It was a lovely shop selling all sorts of interesting stuff and there were 4 shop cats in there ! This one just sat looking in the mirror the whole time.

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The ceiling is hundreds of plastic milk cartons upside down with light bulbs inside.

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This is their card.

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I love these little bollard lights they sell.

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Cat on the counter.

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We started walking back to the station after a lovely warm day in London,

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I was very restrained that day and didn’t buy anything much but Jane bought some lovely vintage fabric.

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I love this little flower stall on the front of the apron.

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A lot of the area in Spitalfields has been modernized and I love the trees. I’m not sure if they’re the original trees or whether new mature ones have been planted.

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The buses were on diversion when I arrived back from town so I walked home which I never do, and spotted this lilac.

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I love this old police lamp outside our partially closed old police station which I think is now run by volunteers.

spittalfields market 065This is the local pub. It’s massive and is now a gastropub ¬†with fantastic food and a huge outside area covered with fairy lights. It’s run by George who pretends it’s a ship and he’s the captain. He’s very funny on twitter. This pub is famous because it’s where the kinks used to come and write their songs when it was a bit of a dive years ago. I saw Ray Davies in Highgate the other day.

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This is a lovely tea room and shop round the corner to me.

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Edwardian tiles outside the butchers.

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There is a house round the corner called “Fairport”. The band Fairport Convention used to rehearse there and they named their band ¬†after the house.

That was a long blog post !!

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Filed under London, UK

OMG I’m in the book !! “Pretty Pastel Style” by Selina Lake

I¬†received my copy of Selina’s brand new book a couple of weeks ago and was completely overwhelmed ¬†to find so many pics of my house in it.¬†I’ve taken photos of the pages and I’m not going to write anything with them because that would make me feel silly, like when an estate agent shows you round a house saying “this is the kitchen, this is the lounge” and you just want to ask him to please go away so you can look round in peace. ¬†The photographer is Catherine Gratwicke and the words are by Joanna Simmons.

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The lovely embroidered hoop is by Vicky Trainor

The lovely embroidered hoop is by Vicky Trainor

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Selina's bike

Selina’s bike

Thank you SO much Selina Lake, Catherine Gratwicke, Joanna Simmons and publishers http://www.rylandpeters.com

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Filed under My home featured in Selina Lake's new book !!!, Vintage Fabric

Three of my things on the front cover of Prima Spring Makes magazine April 2013 !!

Frans birthday 003It’s a beautiful magazine and the front page and the styling was done by Selina Lake. The floral heart (top left) and the moustache cushion ¬†are by Thimble & Bobbin, the Aunty card is by Abigail Warner, the little floral note books are by Emma Wilson, the LOVE postcard is by Cassia Beck, the lavender card and vintage lavender pillows are by Sesame and Lilly¬†¬†and the vintage embroidered hoop, lavender bag and yellow floral lavender heart are by me¬†!!

Blimey that took ages, I’m not a natural at all this copy/paste/link business but I wanted to acknowledge all the other artists on the front cover with me.

Frans birthday 004Amongst all the beautiful pages is a six page spread about stylist/maker Torie Jayne¬†who’s well known for her amazing blog.

Birdhouse Key rack

Birdhouse Key rack

Torie's workroom

Torie’s workroom.¬†I love that pink chair !!

Some of her lovely things

Some of her lovely things

Her business card

Her business card.

I met Torie at Selina’s book launch a few weeks ago when she came to my stand and introduced herself. I was quite taken aback because I didn’t know she’d be there. She gave me her card and I’ve kept it¬†safely because it’s SO lovely. One of the nicest business cards I’ve ever seen.

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Filed under Magazine Features, Vintage Fabric

Happy Kitsch and colourful Easter

Easter rabbits 001Poor mummy chick forgot to change the clocks forward and she overslept so she’s an hour behind and no time to do her hair.

Easter rabbits 002My kids think I’ve totally lost the plot ! Do I care ? No I don’t ūüôā

Easter rabbits 003In fact one of my boys is sitting in the front room with his football shirt on watching a game shouting at the top of his lungs every time the ball goes near the net. God knows what the neighbours think.

Easter rabbits 004The other son has just this second phoned me to say he’s on the train and can I fetch him in ten minutes…. errr no I can’t. He seems to think that I sit here with my car keys in my hand all day and night happily waiting for his call. I don’t. He’s 21 !!!!!!!!!!!!

My pictures, Book launch, Easter 013I was having a happy little Easter blog,

My pictures, Book launch, Easter 007and now I feel like this     Ahhhhhhhh. Happy Easter everyone. Off I go to the station.

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Filed under Easter, My Etsy Shop, Vintage Fabric