Tag Archives: Vintage Fabric

Double Page Spread in Evening Standard Homes & Property ! 10 years ago.

20140628-144114-52874606.jpgI’ve just realised that almost exactly 10 years ago the lovely Pattie Barron who was and still is the Gardening editor came with photographer Marianne Majerus to take photos of my house and garden.

20140628-145810-53890325.jpgThey wanted a colourful centre spread to coincide with Chelsea Flower Show, May 2004.

20140628-150254-54174248.jpgWe’d bought the house the house in a completely derelict state two years earlier and lived in it with no kitchen or heating or anything much.

20140628-150914-54554174.jpgBut it was Victorian with a big garden that hadn’t been touched for 40 years and I loved it.

20140628-151114-54674921.jpgWe renovated it ourselves gradually uncovering some lovely original panelling. I asked the people who bought our old house if we could have the kitchen units etc back when they replaced them! As I knew that unfortunately they were going to modernise. We’d renovated that house too. So one Saturday morning year after we’d moved here, they phoned and said that they were about to put kitchen in a skip so we literally raced round and got it and had it fitted.

20140628-152041-55241171.jpgIt’s just IKEA cupboards, an old sink and a plywood work surface that I’d painted but I was so pleased to have them back and they’re still going strong today and still looking ok for their age as they were in https://nickygrace.co.uk/category/my-home-featured-in-selina-lakes-new-book/ It’s all pretty much still the same apart from the room with the blue walls which we call The Middle Room which I used as a shop before I got my proper shop.I’ve now turned that into a little B&B with it’s own ensuite. The ensuite bathroom was actually the original kitchen when the house was built. There’s a lot of history in this house which was built in 1865.https://nickygrace.co.uk/category/boutique-guest-room-on-airbnb/

20140628-162040-58840707.jpg

3 Comments

Filed under Patchwork Quilts

Very tasty pin cushions

20140414-184322.jpgI’ve been making pin cushions out of damaged, vintage embroidered tablecloths.

20140414-184916.jpgThe embroidery was done in the Forties and Fifties and I only recently realised the pattern was already printed onto the linen so in that sense it was easy as they had a pattern to sew on.

20140414-185619.jpgYou can tell how good the person was at embroidery partly because sometimes they didn’t cover the lines properly so you can see bits of the printing which should have been covered.

20140414-190022.jpgThe real art though is in the colours. I’ve been collecting vintage table cloths for 20 years and so often I’ll see one which has been expertly made yet the colours aren’t very inspiring and I always think what a shame to have worked so hard and spent so many hours making it yet the result isn’t too enchanting. That’s unfortunately the case with most of them which is why when I find ones like these it’s like finding gold dust.

20140414-190842.jpgI wonder about the ladies who made them. Were they young, middle aged, elderly ? How did they even have time to embroider tablecloths when they had so much else to do, cooking from scratch, hand washing, looking after their families etc without all the mod cons we have.

20140414-191429.jpgSaying that though, they didn’t have televisions and if I didn’t watch so much TV I could probably embroider at least a couple of large table cloths every week ūüôā I’m glad they did it though so I don’t have to.

20140414-192300.jpgSo here they are all together. I’ve also added some vintage fabric flowers to make them even more colourful and scrumptious.

20140414-192538.jpgAnd here they are all dressed for Easter.
I think a pin cushion should be beautiful because it’ll be next to you while you sew ¬†year after year. Mine is one of the very first things I made and I still love it.

7 Comments

Filed under Vintage Fabric

Flowers, hearts and a pigeon in June 2013

Photo 10-06-2013 16 42 10Vintage fabric mini garland in my shop. I love making these so much as every piece is different and beautiful. There is old embroidery of hyacinths and patchwork in this one and I’ve cut out some flowers too.

Photo 12-04-2013 18 59 12Patchwork vintage fabric cushion covers with old Disney characters, embroidery and florals.

Photo 27-03-2013 11 41 00One of my cut flower collages which I make using vintage floral fabric.

Photo 15-04-2013 12 38 12Vintage fabric patchwork throw. Lovely over a settee or bed.

Photo 07-05-2013 12 57 29Flowers from my garden a couple of weeks ago. Tulips, wall flowers, bluebells and forget me nots in a tiny little glass.

Photo 08-05-2013 12 26 04One of my vintage fabric lavender hearts. This floral fabric was made in the thirties.

Photo 10-05-2013 19 08 31A small selection from my little on line shop.

Photo 08-05-2013 12 55 52Little patchwork pin cushion. The blue fabric is from 1940’s America and is so precious. I ¬†treasure every tiny piece ūüôā

Photo 16-05-2013 19 54 16The bluebells in my garden were extra blue and lasted a long time this year due to the cool damp May/June.

Photo 21-05-2013 13 44 38Flowers from the garden. Lilac, bluebells, wall flowers. I LOVE this picture………

Photo 27-05-2013 15 51 11Lilac, borage, ceanothus, forget me nots, fairy washing up liquid, my lovely pigeon card and cut out vintage fabric flowers.

Photo 27-05-2013 15 15 12More lovely blue and purple flowers. xxx

10 Comments

Filed under Miscellaneous, My Old Victorian Garden, Vintage Fabric

Brick Lane and Spitalfields

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

spittalfields market 003

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

spittalfields market

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

spittalfields market 004

Lovely original shop front over the Ben Sherman shop.

spittalfields market 005

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….

spittalfields market 013

saw this gorgeous street art under a bridge….

spittalfields market 016

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.

spittalfields market 014

Beautiful old shop drawers in The shop.

spittalfields market 018

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.

spittalfields market 020

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

spittalfields market 021

spittalfields market 022

spittalfields market 023

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

spittalfields market 024

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

spittalfields market 027

It has gorgeous yellow walls with beautiful prints hanging.

spittalfields market 025

spittalfields market 026

spittalfields market 029

We went in to the famous Beigel Bakery

spittalfields market 030

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

spittalfields market 031

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

spittalfields market 032

spittalfields market 033

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

spittalfields market 034

spittalfields market 038

spittalfields market 037

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

spittalfields market 041

A street artist was painting a wall in Bacon street

spittalfields market 040

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

spittalfields market 045

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.

spittalfields market 046

spittalfields market 047

spittalfields market 048

spittalfields market 050

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

spittalfields market 052

This is their card.

spittalfields market 053

I love these little bollard lights they sell.

spittalfields market 054

Cat on the counter.

spittalfields market 056

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

spittalfields market 060

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

spittalfields market 061

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

spittalfields market 063

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.

spittalfields market 064

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

spittalfields market 066

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.

spittalfields market 068

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

spittalfields market 069

Edwardian tiles outside the butchers.

spittalfields market 070

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 !!

3 Comments

Filed under London, UK

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.

5 Comments

Filed under Magazine Features, Vintage Fabric

Anemones and an article in Prima Magazine.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 010I’ve always loved flowers but I remember being a small child and thinking that anemones¬†¬†

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 006were fuddy duddy, musty, ¬†dusty old lady flowers. I’ve sort of grown into them now. Oh dear.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 007They are amazing actually aren’t they.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 014There’s an article about me in Prima magazine, the April edition which came out about 3 weeks ago. Mags are always weeks ahead of themselves it seems.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 018It’s quite odd seeing what you’ve said written in print. A bit surreal. It was an article with three women, me being one of them, who had shops in their houses.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 017Gosh it’s tidy. I wish it was always like that. I’m a very untidy person.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 013Here’s a stork on the pond in the park where I take the dog. I think it’s a stork. I know that ¬†to people who live in the countryside it’s no big deal but for me it really is something special. It was¬†absolutely freezing on that day last week and it just stood there completely still. I see it quite often.

birthday cake, stork, anenomies 004Lets have cake…….lemon drizzle anyone ?

10 Comments

Filed under Magazine Features, My Old Victorian Garden, Vintage Pop Up Sales

Encouraging comments on Face Book

flower cards 001

I’m just realizing that the amount of people that see my posts on Face Book

directly correlates to the amount of people who leave a comment.

flower cards 005¬†I get a few likes sometimes which is always nice and shows that people have seen the posts but it’s the interaction that counts, which means commenting about the post. The more comments the more people get to see it. I don’t know how Face Book works but comments seem to generate action. ¬†I’m not very good at explaining¬†things I don’t understand !

I’m a culprit myself. I’ll see something nice on someone’s page and press the ‘like’ button but not often comment because I can’t think what to say and whatever I do say sounds phoney or cheesy and it’s a bit cringe….. I don’t always want to comment anyway, I just want to ‘like’ and go. But now I realize that it’s the comments that make the Face Book world go round I shall make much more effort to do so.

flower cards 006

I’ve also noticed and been told by ¬†social media expert Lindsay¬†that if you don’t comment on people’s posts or they don’t comment on yours that Face Book now don’t show you those posts any more and not only is that a real shame but when you have a business (fan) page it’s ¬†also detrimental. FB now want people to pay for posts¬†¬†to reach more people which does work as I’ve tried it but I’d much rather deal in comments than ¬£¬£¬£.

To encourage such comments I’ll do little competitions sometimes on my page which is what I made these cards for. That was all a bit long winded wasn’t it. Never been good at explaining myself, sorry xx Press this !

6 Comments

Filed under My Etsy Shop, Vintage Fabric

A lovely Selina Lake feature with a few of my things included.

prima and quilt 001

Prima Magazine (March) came out a couple of days ago and I thumbed manically through the pages as the stylist Selina Lake  had borrowed a vintage fabric patchwork throw and three cushions from me.

prima and quilt 002

Page 81-83 they’re on ¬†!! I was quite exited standing in the magazine section of Tesco at 9pm, my new shopping time which is quite relaxing as it’s not busy and the crying ¬†babies and fed up toddlers are all at home. I think that after about 9pm they should put out a few comfy chairs so that those so inclined could read the mags in comfort instead of leaning¬†heavily¬†on our¬†trolley.

prima and quilt 006

I could quite happily  spend a whole day in Tescos. I usually spend about half an hour in the magazine section anyway and sometimes meet a friend upstairs at Costa for a nice uninterrupted hour or two of quality catch up time.

prima and quilt 008

Then back downstairs to meander round shopping¬†leisurely, reading¬†labels,¬†peering¬†at calorie contents, noticing how it’s all so expensive these days and wondering if my kids will notice that I’ve bought Tescos own brand of Special K. (They did and declared it inedible so I gave it to the birds)

prima and quilt 003

Then I’d go and buy a couple of news papers, go back up in the lift to Costa and ¬†have a nice cake or two which I didn’t have with my friend as we’re¬†fiendishly slimming (not)….

prima and quilt 004

Then I’d go back down and maybe browse through the ‘colds and flue’ isle wondering if it’s actually worth buying vitamins and then maybe saunter (wearilly, after those two cakes) around the electronic isle looking at phones and ipads.

prima and quilt 007

By this time I would hope that at least one of my children would have bothered ¬†to phone me to enquire as to my whereabouts….but probably not.

If my local Tesco had a bed and breakfast area for tired shoppers, like a little rest stop with own brand sheets, cheap slippers and mini tubes of toothpaste for those of us who couldn’t face the¬†inevitable job ahead of unpacking the shopping and putting it away then I’d book ahead. As long as I got¬†tipple club card points.

My throw featured here was ¬£140 but to¬†celebrate it being in Prima it’s now the amazingly good value of ¬£95. The cushion was ¬£45 and is now ¬£38.

Stylist Selina Lake ¬†is launching her lovely new book ‘Pretty Pastel Style’ with a wonderful fair with fantastic¬†designer¬†maker stall holders. I went to her last one nearly a year ago and it was so beautiful and quite exiting. It’s in Kingston West London on Friday the 22nd March 2013 and everyone is welcome. There will I’m sure be lots of cake.

The photo here are by Sussie Bell

prima and quilt 005

9 Comments

Filed under Handmade, Magazine Features, My Etsy Shop, My home featured in Selina Lake's new book !!!, Vintage Fabric

Pitfield Cafe London

Day in Hoxton 024

Last weekend I went with a friend to Pitfield Cafe and shop in Shoreditch.

Day in Hoxton 011

We had the most delicious lunch in the lovely cafe

Day in Hoxton 014

I didn’t take any pics of the cafe because it was full and it didn’t feel right pointing my camera at strangers.

Day in Hoxton 013

It’s a very large space and about three¬†quarters¬†¬†is the shop.

Day in Hoxton 018

Blury pic of a bit of the food counter.

Day in Hoxton 021

Lovely old watering cans

Day in Hoxton 015

Day in Hoxton 016

Day in Hoxton 017

Nice isn’t it.

Day in Hoxton 010

They also sell gorgeous tea towels by Barbara Chandler

Day in Hoxton 008

Cabinets full of vintage glass

Day in Hoxton 020

Beautiful huge old prints

Day in Hoxton 012

Cosy corner and lots of fifties crockery exactly the same as my grandma used to have.

Day in Hoxton 022

The waitresses were very friendly and actually wiped the crumbs from the tables into their hands and not onto the floor like some places (drives me insane).

Day in Hoxton 023

What I loved most of all though was the wonderful frontage which I think is outstandingly amazingly beautiful. Just Ahhhhhh

Old Street Tube London.

3 Comments

Filed under London, UK

Pop up vintage fair in Hampstead, London NW3

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 023

Last Sunday I went to the Vintage pop up fair in St Stephens church hall in Hampstead. Many years ago the place fell into disrepair and became home to a few squatters and their barking dogs. I walked past it to and from work every day and was so¬†intrigued and curious, I’d have given anything to have a peak inside. They were lucky to be residing in such an amazing, huge and stunning church, quite¬†medieval and haunting at night, all dark as there ¬†was no electricity. The dogs barked,¬†heavily¬†tattooed ¬† shadowy figures came and went and I imagined the place to be candle lit. ¬†It must have been freezing. Roll on a couple of decades and it’s been repaired at great cost and is now a most beautiful church.

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 024

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 018Brixton & cabbages & frocks 025

It’s a huge, imposing place with tons of atmosphere and there are always lovely stalls. I never come away empty handed.

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 022

I bought some gorgeous notebooks from www.retrofromscratch.co.uk who use the front covers of vintage books to make into note books and diaries.

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 016

There was a lovely vintage china stall called MadAboutPots  by Jane Murphy who also had a plate stand full of very delicious tiny cakes for free.

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 017

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 019

I fell in love with this beautiful little jacket and it took all my will power not to buy it. If I had I would have hung it on the wall as it’s not something I’d get away with wearing but it was just so gorgeous.

Brixton & cabbages & frocks 020

If it’s still there next time I know it’s meant for me.

Leave a comment

Filed under London, UK