Wednesday, 29 April 2009

My bathroom in print!

Our bathroom is in the current May issue of House & Garden - it's been out for a few weeks but I hadn't spotted it until a friend pointed it out, yay! Me and the kids are also in the pic - I was a bit nervous about it all as I have never been in a magazine before but I think it came out ok. It's quite a quirky bathroom, they have only featured a small corner. The wallpaper is of course from Cath Kidston, I love this seasidey print. It led to me going a bit overboard on the whole vintage seaside thing but I don't care, we love it! And our friends always seem to like it too. As you can see if you click on the photo, our towel rack is an old railway luggage rack and the kids' toys are stored in a vintage suitcase. Can you see the row of Little People on the windowsill?

The Holiday's Over

We've just got back from our holidays in the Australian Gold Coast and Japan. It was a great trip, I have lots to share as soon as I have decompressed a bit. Also, this weekend I'll be doing a special Japan Giveaway with some Paumes books and other goodies picked up on my trip, so please pop back.

For now I'm off for a long soak in the bath with the pile of magazine subscriptions that have arrived while I've been away. Don't you love going through your post when you get back from a trip? All of the bills and boring stuff go onto Paul's desk but my pile contains mags, some fabric I ordered online, new craft books from Amazon, samples of new designs from various lovely people, a couple of Etsy purchases and a little pile of birthday cards.

I hope you've had a great week too. Bye for now! x

Sunday, 26 April 2009

On the Road

Hello from Japan! Just a short post from my holiday which has been wonderful so far. Family fun on the Gold Coast, shopping and people-watching in Tokyo, and spending time with our friends in a small town near Nagoya. Today is my birthday and we're off to explore the countryside. I'll be back very soon!x

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Thank you Mr Fisher and Mr Price!

When it's the school holidays and it's cold and stormy outside and the day is dragging on, I know it's time to bring out my trump card - the vintage Fisher Price toys.

My little guys have been playing quietly together for over THREE hours with some of the play sets we've collected. They've built a whole little town and have sent some of the people off on holiday. I don't know of any modern (non-electronic) toy that can capture the imagination of two young boys for this long. Except maybe Lego and Playmobil, but they have vintage roots too. Hurrah!

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

Monday, 13 April 2009

The Mysterious Little Shop

There is a strange little shop in a beautiful ramshackle old hotel around the corner from my house.

From the window it appears to be a vintage shop, as it has a display of old things that changes once in while.

At present the display has a girl mannequin and some vintage kitchen things with brown paper notes on saying things like 'make your own jam', 'use a handkerchief' and 'recycle your old clothes'. Ideas close to my heart!

There is a handwritten sign that says 'these brown paper signs were made in the 1990s recession. Now relevant to today. Save. Buy your recycled clothes here.'

The only thing is, and this is what makes it mysterious, is that the shop is NEVER open. I have lived here for three years, and I pass this little shop on the school run every day but I have never been able to get in. The word locally is that the owner puts a red chair outside when the shop is open. My friend Beck saw the chair once and managed to get in. She said that it was a bit strange, lots of lovely old things but it seemed like the shop owner didn't actually want to sell anything, and there were no prices.

It's driving me mad. One day I will get inside this shop and see for myself. For the moment I can only look in at the windows. Perhaps it is not a real shop but a shop for 'lost things' like Emily's shop in Bagpuss?

I am loving these fresh fruit mineral waters, they come from a spring just 5 minutes away from our house.

The flavours are great (mmm, blood orange...) and I love that they are local and not full of sugary rubbish and additives, but most of all I love ... the gorgeous retro labels and sweet colours!

Daylesford and Hepburn Mineral Springs Co. is a small family business that is starting to make a name for itself across Australia. If you see these lovely waters, or their original still and sparkling waters, give them a try in favour of those imported multi-national brands!

Sunday, 12 April 2009

Egg-citing day ahead!

Look who's riding in this truck!

The Easter Bunny was cheeky this year and hid lots of little eggs in unexpected places.

Thanks to Nana and various family friends, he left a lot of eggs at our house ... chocolate, here we come! Have an egg-citing Easter Sunday, wherever you are! x

Saturday, 11 April 2009

The solution

Baby tomato panzanella - easily my favourite salad! Well, that's a couple of handfuls of tomatoes used up!

Too many tomatoes!

We waited all summer for tomatoes and now they are dropping off the vines. But boy do they taste good!

Saturday mornings were made for garage sales and croissants!

Friday, 10 April 2009

Red Star Café, Hepburn Springs

While the boys were off on a Good Friday play date we snuck into Red Star Café, another favourite local haunt.

Hepburn is a little hamlet next door to Daylesford, with a really nice villagey feel and lots of little cafés, restaurants and holiday cottages. Red Star is at the heart of it all - they do a great cooked breakfast, or you can just get a bowl of coco pops if that's what you want!

It's a lovely old place with a decorative tin ceiling, vintage books lining the walls and splashes of red everywhere.

The selection of local handmade cakes and biscuits is my favourite!!

The hippie van is not usually parked outside, in fact it was gone when we came out but I have seen it at two other locations around Daylesford today. It's the kind of thing you see regularly around here! Reminds me of my favourite film Tilsammans (Together) .

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

This week's Belle & Boo illustration

I am feeling a bit loved-up this week, what with my accidental heart cookies and our impending wedding anniversary. So this week's favourite Belle & Boo illustration is...

'Walk With Me'.

What a sweet and darling image this is. If you are in Australia you can buy a signed print here or from selected stockists.


The second issue of Peppermint is out now. I really like this new magazine, which is described on the cover as 'Australia's first eco-fashion mag'. It has articles on fair trade fashion, craft and beauty, and interviews with some great people including Faythe Levine, Umbrella Prints and Safia Minney, the founder of People Tree, who is such an awesome business role model.

Also there is a pattern for re-fashioning an old business shirt into a brand new frilly blouse, hurrah! My guy has never worked in an office so I will be scouring the op shops to have a go at this!

Accidental Heart Cookies

Today I made some chocolate chip cookies with this great recipe . Two of them somehow made themselves into heart shapes and stuck together in the oven like two love hearts!

My friend Angela has started a Flickr group for accidental hearts, 'a happy place to share your fortutious heart shaped encounters'! Do have a look here .

Sunday, 5 April 2009

Easter Bunny Cupcakes

What better way to spend a rainy Sunday afternoon?

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Maryborough and Clunes

Ahhh, Maryborough! One of the last outposts of thriftiness.

Where you can still find a vintage suitcase, fill it with lovely loot and walk away only $6 poorer.

And where you can eat the world's best scones at the Station Cafe before heading to Clunes, which has the most beautiful old shops ever, and is practically a ghost town except for...

Widow Twankey's Confectionery Emporium, a shrine to sweetness, a landmark of lollies, a museum of mouth-wateringness...

You can find just about any lolly in the world here, and their Easter display is sensational.

Here is my booty, enough to keep Steph and I happy all the way home!

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

I Want To Make A Dormouse House!

Could this be the sweetest craft project ever? I have been longing to make it since I came across it in a vintage craft book a few months ago, but I will probably never get around to it, so I'm sharing the pictures here instead!

It is a zip-up tree-trunk dormouse house.

Inside there is a little family of dormice living happily. The pattern includes instructions for everything, including 'Home Sweet Home' sampler, plaited rug, log basket, toasting fork, toadstools, snails, window boxes , mugs of cocoa, toast and lots of other mini delights.

The book is called 'Favourite Toys' by Jean Greenhowe. If anybody is clever enough to have a go at making this gorgeous house I would love to see it! Did you know that 'dormouse' comes from the Latin word 'dormir' - to sleep, as they can sleep happily throughout the winter in their own snug nest built into a hollow tree, just like this one. I wish I was a dormouse living in this cosy house with my family and my mug of cocoa!