Thursday, 21 July 2011

the land of my fathers

we're off on holiday tomorrow. we'll be staying in a cottage in carmarthenshire for a week and then me and o-o are spending a week up north while m finishes off some home improvements. i'll not be posting for a while, the cottage doesn't have the interweb and the connection at my folks' is a rather unreliable clockwork affair. see you in a couple of weeks. until then, here's my gran (on the right) giggling with a friend on a welsh beach in the 1930s. look at those shoes!

Tuesday, 19 July 2011

for services to housewifery...

do you know someone who dusts places that no one will ever see? someone who irons sheets? someone who hoovers their carpet in to neatly regimented stripes? perhaps they deserve to be awarded a badge for services to housekeeping? nursing patches also available.

octopus monoprint

from a vintage design book. love the detail of the suckers!

Monday, 18 July 2011

Saturday, 16 July 2011

grandma's lamp

when my dad and his siblings were clearing gran's house i asked if i could have this lamp that had been there forever. my memories of it were slightly different to the reality; i had pictured a grand, HUGE antique lamp. the actual thing is a fair bit smaller and weirdly, part of the upright section had been replaced with bits of an old sporting trophy. it was also something of a death trap with splits in the flex and an un-earthed bulb holder, yikes. here's how it looked then...
i decided to rewire and refurbish it, i got a new bulb holder and bright orange flex on ebay and a white shade in the habitat closing down sale. i garnered a lot of geeksome enjoyment out of the whole process, especially the rewiring. coloured, overbraided flex is another obsession (along with blackboard paint and pom-pom trim). here's the lamp now...

Friday, 15 July 2011

a million dads cannot be wrong...

pom-pom fringe

o-o is something of an early bird. i am more of a night owl. in an attempt to encourage some later starts i have been trying to achieve total darkness in his bedroom. a turquoise blackout roller blind has been supplemented with the pink jumble sale blanket hung from an ikea curtain wire. this morning i added some orange pom-pom trim to the bottom of the blankie-curtain using my hand cranked singer sewing machine. pom-pom trim could become an obsession.

Thursday, 14 July 2011


this pinboard by ashley goldberg reminded me of this super duper book which i bought back in the days when i had money to spend on books! it's a collection of russian folk artifacts and is full of ingenious inventions 'made by ordinary russians inspired by the lack of immediate access to manufactured goods during the collapse of the soviet union'.

i do love cobbling things together. the make do and mend approach is so good, & in these days of global financial meltdown and environmental doom, it's the future. spotted some plastic-drink-bottle mud guards on our neighbour's push bike the other day, fair cheered my soul! 

anyway, without further ado, here are a couple of images from the book. a home for a queen bee...
and a tv aerial...

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

mum tip #1

so, i've only been doing this mum thing for a couple of years but i thought i would give you all some (unsolicited) advice.

mum tip #1 is; get a big bed.

it is a little known fact that your bed shrinks when your first baby arrives. when o-o was born, our double bed, previously cosy & comfortable suddenly felt so very, very small. we invested in a super king, it virtually fills the room but makes a world of difference, now i can adopt my starfish sleeping position unencumbered. in my view the bed can never be too big!


i'm now on pinterest (too much and when i should be doing other things). click on the button below to join my pinterest gang. m says making pinterest pinboards is the girl version of creating endless spotify playlists...

Follow Me on Pinterest

Tuesday, 12 July 2011

moving molly

this was one of my favourites as a child so i was super pleased to find a copy in a charity shop. i love the moment when she writes a 'M' for molly under a flap of wallpaper and then sticks it down with spit. as a tiddler i longed to find a hidden doorway or tunnel which would lead to adventures like molly's in a secret overgrown garden.
kids these days don't get much of a chance to have their own adventures it's all so structured and safe and supervised. my mum and auntie g describe spending long days building fires in the woods, jumping over the brook and playing with potentially hazardous found items on waste ground, only returning home when they were hungry. seems like with each generation children's lives are more restricted. in the story molly wanders off to explore the jungle-y garden next door while her mum's 'busy painting and wall-papering and getting things in order' in their new house. no one even notices she's gone, no one panics, she's free! 

Monday, 11 July 2011


yikes, my mum was throwing out a table we've had since i was a tiddler. she's very unsentimental about that sort of thing, i, on the other hand, am a soppy old hoarder so i decided to bring it back to our house and do it up. anyways, when i removed the base (you know how thorough i am, remember the epic door painting project?) i found this dress folded up in the hollow upright section. i feel bad just binning it but i want rid of it as soon as possible so i'm listing it for a snip in my etsy vintage shop. here's the listing. please take it away.

*** 19th of july. the little dress has found a new home, posted it off to faraway shores this morning, phew! ***

on a side note, i thought i might coat the top of the table with blackboard paint, what do you think? i am rather obsessed with the stuff and fear once i start i will be unable to stop. o-o would be delighted with a blackboard painted home as he loves to draw on the walls & furniture, that's mostly what he's up to when he goes all quiet...

sketchbook monday

another early start. UG! here's a rather sparse sketchbook spread...

i'm hankering after this scarf thingumy, it is so soft. 

and dreaming of a treehouse. we've been making lots of duplo houses. 

Sunday, 10 July 2011

housewife photoshoot

have been prancing about in my approximation of 1950s housewife garb taking photos for some new sianuskavintage listings. what fun! sinister kite apron is here. portuguese apron is here. both ideal for serving refreshing drinks to you summertime guests!

Friday, 8 July 2011


need to choose a pendant light for the living room. paralysed by indecision.

this is beautiful but for some reason you can't clip etsy items to polyvore. we have the ottava lights in the hallway, i love them but they are a bit industrial and we want the room to be cosy.

which one's your favourite? 

radish bouquet

m's got an allotment. he has wrested it from the grasp of some very vigorous weeds and now, at last, is beginning to see the fruits (or vegetables) of his labour. as you will know, if you are an allotmenteer, the easiest and quickest thing to grow are radishes. so we have plenty of them. here's a lovely bunch from a few weeks ago. we used them to make this dish, which is very simple and tasty. i think radishes would make a lovely wedding bouquet. 

Thursday, 7 July 2011

yellow nordic jumper

this jumper arrived last week. i bought it from this shop. it's super cosy.

perhaps my knitwear choices have been influenced by 'the killing' and lund's miraculously self healing jumper? can't wait for series two so i can scare myself witless again. the print is from aardvark-on-sea, they have an etsy shop full of good stuff.

Wednesday, 6 July 2011

good times

auntie g has been here on a flying visit for the past couple of days. we've enjoyed lots of chats, tea and sing-a-longs. here's o-o giggling during some horse-y riding shenanigans. his t-shirt was a gift from my cousin (who lives in the wilds of north wales and, impressively, is fluent in the language of heaven despite not being a native speaker...), it says 'big trouble'. i don't normally like slogans on clothing but this one's a gem.

today we went into town (while o-o enjoyed a play at his friend's house for the morning). we went into toast where everything is loveliness. i bought this very nice jacket. an arm and a leg job, despite being in the sale but auntie g very generously went halves with me. makes me feel like a right swish mama. 

Tuesday, 5 July 2011

give & take

o-o's pal l-man has been here with us today so there has been a lot of sharing practice. we bought this richard scarry book at the car boot at the weekend. i love it, his work always reminds me of my uni friend jim.

Monday, 4 July 2011

bangs, bikes & books treasury

so very addictive.

i'm too much of a chicken to ride a bike and a fringe wouldn't suit (have spent long enough holding the end of my pony tail over my forehead to know this with some certainty) but i do have glasses as a result of reading too many books (specs from here, worth a visit if you are a four eyes living in the south east).

the sohomode dresses are so beautiful, if i was the marrying kind... 

the door is finished and is, though i say so myself, a thing of beauty, apologies for the somewhat grainy photo. 

sketchbook monday

a lovely found pattern, a horrifying fact and o-o having fun with his felt pens. we spent the morning in the playground with friends. o-o aged me by several decades by disappearing for five minutes. he'd sneaked out of the gate and was hiding, giggling behind a ramp in the skate park area. so, so scary, i was a headless chicken of panic.

Sunday, 3 July 2011


cats = je n'aime pas. i do, however, like hand knitted jumpers with wonky stitches made by old ladies. this little beauty is in the shop now.

Friday, 1 July 2011

things to do about the home

o-o is at b's hanging out with his pal l-man so i am taking the opportunity to continue with the door painting. progress is slow. i am doing it properly, the dad way, which involves a lot of preparation; stripping back to wood, sanding down and then applying many layers of paint (primer, undercoat, top coat). luckily i have a copy of 'things to do about the home' which has provided me with these handy instructions... 

the book is full of pleasing illustrations, perhaps one day i will turn some of them into screen-prints. in a way they remind me of some of the images in this book. anyway, the primer and undercoat are on. the undercoat is a lovely shade of soft grey, i do love grey. have my fingers crossed that the final door colour will be as beautiful. now i'm having a tea break. 

in other happy news; the jasmine is starting to flower. it's right next to the kitchen window so i am treated to its beautiful scent while i complete my housewifery tasks.

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