Sunday, 31 July 2011

60s chairs

I went to a boot fair on Saturday morning and apart from a dvd of 'The Time Travellers Wife' for £2 it wasn't looking too exciting  - no fabric treasures waiting to be discovered.
Then on the very last aisle as me and my daughter were wandering along, a lady happened to get up from a chair  by her stall and as we were on the look out for some wooden fold up chairs and I noticed she had 2, I rushed back to check if they were for sale.
They were looking a little grubby, with a bluey coloured seat but when she said £1.50 each I snapped them up.

I'd gone to the boot fair with my Mother-in-Law as well and when me and D met up with her she informed me they were a genuine pair of 60s chairs, certainly worth more than £1.50! (she had also bagged a gorgeous original oil painting of Thames barges for £7!).

As soon as I got home I got out the Cif and gave them a good clean and was amazed at the gorgeous duck egg blue seat that was hiding underneath the grime!

I am pleased as punch with them and we have all been sitting on them over the weekend in our little sunny spot at the end of the garden!

Nothing feels quite so good as a boot fair bargain does it!
What bargains did you find at the boot fair or charity shop lately?

Friday, 29 July 2011

Whitstable Oyster Festival

I haven't blogged for ages, mainly with all the madness of plays, sports days and fairs that come with the end of the summer term at school. Plus we have had lots of family staying here in Whitstable -  Aunties, Grandparents and cousins who all came along for a little holiday during the Oyster Festival. So it has been an exciting start to the holidays.

The Whitstable Oyster Festival is a week long celebration where we have all sorts of weird and wonderful events, performances, workshops and traditions.
It all kicks off with the landing of the Oysters - which are brought ashore in an old boat and blessed by the local vicar.

The harbour had a fabulous food market - but it was too jam packed to even attempt to take a picture! We did manage to stroke these lovely Newfoundland dogs - although they were a tad smelly!

There was a parade through the town with crazy and very tall aliens (who took a shine to my son!) the local Samba band who are impossible not to dance to!

There has been pavement art...

Beach picnics with cousins....

and seaside walks in the sunshine.

It has been lovely.

I have been making a little a couple of orders for some cushions and bags - but of course, I forgot to photograph them! I still haven't attempted to start the chair from the last post, but thank you for the advice I was given. I think it is going to involve using the cover I have anyway!

I hope the sun is shining wherever you may be!

Monday, 18 July 2011

Help! A little advice please....

Blogland I need your help.....please!

I am totally stumped on something that I really should know how to do, but I don't!!
The IKEA chair in the above picture is about 8 years old and the beige cover has seen far better days. It really needs a new one and has been on my 'to do' list for months.

It looks fine without it's padded cover - but it's not half as comfy.

So, I'll make one I said confidently, taking the cover off.
So I studied it, and looked at it, scratched my head and thought about it and realised......I have no idea where to start!
I want it pretty much the same style, so that it just slips on and off and I even brought this bargain, really thick upholstery/curtain ticking fabric from an ebay shop (£15 inc p&p for 3 metres!) to make the cover out of.

And now I am stuck.  I don't want to chop into the ticking and then do it all wrong.  
So... do I take the old cover apart and try and make a pattern from it?
Do I make a cover that goes over the old cover or do I start from scratch (eek!). It's the idea of all the layers of wadding, front and back fabrics that confuses me and the order to sew it all in (and I make quilts so this should be simple right?!).

I will be eternally grateful for ANY help offered!! Thank you. 

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Something for the teachers

The other day I was struggling to come up with something new and exciting to give as presents to my kids teachers.  I have previously given some of my handmade make-up purses and lavender hearts, which have all been very well received but I fancied making something different this year.

Whilst browsing my regular blogs I saw the answer to my prayers on  the wonderful blog by Domesticali . I knew I had to make thse and  would like to add I did first ask Ali for her permission and she very generously and happily gave it to me to recreate her fantastic idea!

Book bags for grown ups, or more specifically book bags for teachers - they seem to have endless books and paper to carry around! I just loved Ali's clever idea and so set about measuring and sewing lots of lines on to some calico. Then I got the kids to write their teachers names on the lines in my favourite iron out pens!

I free motion embroidered over their writing, made them up into bags with webbing handles and hey presto - paper bags.

I love seeing the kids very best writing displayed on them and do hope they like them as much as I do. They also wrote their names and the year on the back, just so the teachers can remember them.

So thank you so much Ali - they aren't as good as her original one, but what a clever lady for coming up with such a good idea.

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

Nothing Compares 2 U

Ok first I must apologise for a very self-indulgent post, feel free to leave if you have no interest in Prince!. On Sunday, me and my other half had a rare child-free day out as we went to the Hop Farm Festival in Paddock Wood.  In my late teens I was a huge Prince fan and to this day I still think he is a musical genius.  I went to see him perform when I was about 16 and again in 2007 when he did 21 nights in a row at the O2 in London - live he is pretty incredible.

So it was a bit of a shock back in May when Prince was annouced as the headline act on the third day of the Hop Farm Festival - a fairly small festival only in it's 4th year. Prince hadn't played in the UK since 2007 and had never peformed at a Festival here. And now he was going to be playing in a field in the middle of Kent! It was so bizarre that well, we had to get tickets and my lovely husband spent a morning  ringing up and managed to get us a couple.

So with the children left at the Grandparents we headed off. I am so glad we did, we had a really amazing day with the other artists Alo Blacc, Eliza Doolittle, Imelda May, Larry Graham and Tinie Tempah on before Prince and who all helped build a great atmosphere.

We also had amazing weather, with gorgeous sunshine all day - not a muddy welly boot in sight!

We thoroughly enjoyed lazying in the sunshine and L especially liked these mobile beer men, who came and filled up your glass so you didn't even need to queue up at one of the bars!

 Finally, a little bit late,  Prince came on and peformed for a solid 2 and a 1/4 hour set. L has never 'got' him before, finding him too weird but Prince has certainly mellowed in his old (53) age.

It was discovering that he has a sense of humour that sold it to L though. After peforming a beautiful version of 'Nothing compares 2 U' Prince joked that is wasn't his song but Sinead O'Connors, to which the audience all booed and jeered. Prince smirked and said 'Hey I brought me a house with that song'! He is certainly a bit more normal - still not quite your average 53 year old though!

He can sing and dance like a 20 year old and my god the man can play a guitar!

 It was so brilliant to be up close and actually be able to see him peform in the flesh and not just on the screen. I am so glad for whatever reason he did decided to do this little Festival (it is totally independent and not sponsored which I think was part of the attraction sold by Vince Power the organiser) as it was such a different experience to seeing someone so famous somewhere like the O2, where you are so far away.

There was no pre-rehearsal so the critics have all said it was much more like one of his after show parties as he started with a soundcheck (a jam!) and was constantly yelling out instructions for lights and musicians so it all felt a bit less regimented.  It was a beautiful  night and one that I will remember forever.  I am so glad L got to experience seeing him live and loved it as much as me and I got to be there with him. See L, sometimes I really am right!
Ok, indulgent post over - I promise not to do it again!!!!!