Sunday, 27 March 2011

Sewing Room Ta-Dah!!

How has your weekend been? We have been very busy here at Shabby Chic Towers!!

Yesterday afternoon we went to fetch a dresser that we had won on eBay for my sewing room. A few months ago we dug out the spare room (which was very much a junk room) gave it a coat of paint with all the dregs we found in the garage mixed to a rather ugly and dark aubergine colour. I wasn't happy with it from the moment it was done but have put up with it until now.

I have been yearning for a gorgeous, inspirational, shabby chic studio like these here, here and here. So, I came up with a master plan, to find a dresser to replace the horrible mismatched melamine cupboard and drawers and then paint over the hideous paint with some one-coat emulsion (to make it less of an ordeal!!)

I managed to "persuade" Hubby to help due to the fact he owed me one because he has Gone. And. Bought. A. Motorbike. (More about that later).

And thus we spent yesterday afternoon painting over the yucky colour; realising the one-coat paint wasn't actually going to cover in one coat; making an impromptu trip to B&Q to find the last remaining tub of the discontinued cotton white paint I had chosen; doing a second coat!!

This afternoon I did a bit of organising and Hubby put up my shelves and it is now a much, much more inspiring room.

Would you like to see it?

This is the dresser that we got off eBay for £41:

It now houses my books and small fabric stash and in the drawers is my yarn sorted by colour. On the top left you see my photo albums which I did when scrapbooking. In the middle are my files with card and paper and the baskets on the right have my Work In Progress and 3 x cushions that are waiting for new covers.

The sewing box was also an eBay find which I have had a little while - that was only £10.

Here you see "Dolly" - my double!! She is a duct tape dummy which Hubby and I made to help me when making clothes. I am really that shape *blushes*

My shelves, which I would love to fill with jars of buttons and vintage trimmings....

My sewing table with my Mother's Day tablecloth!! The curtains will have to be changed when I find some fabric I like.

Unfortunately, I have to have the tumbledryer in my room, it's hiding behind the ironing board which is sporting my Mother's Day cover!! On the wall is a noticeboard we made by getting a HUGE (it was 3 x times this size!!) sheet of polystyrene (which is sold for insulation & cost £6) and covering it with Cath Kidston fabric. We stuck it to the wall with No More Nails and I'll cover it in clippings and pictures that inspire me....

Today, we went on a trip to Gun Wharf Quays where Son#1 and Son#2 were dropped off at the cinema while Hubby and I looked around the shops in peace - they have a Cath Kidston outlet and as this was my first visit as it hasn't been open very long I was Very.Excited. Indeed.

It is quite a big shop and the reductions seemed to be about 30% which was pretty good I thought. I bought myself a keyring and some fabric for the noticeboard and Hubby (on behalf of Sons #1 & #2!!) bought me an ironing board cover and a tablecloth for Mother's Day - I've been a bit naughty and had them already.

I also bought this little fella in Paperchase:

What you can't see from the pic is he is a little bit glittery and for £2 I couldn't resist him!!

Other news this weekend is that Hubby has gone and bought a motorbike. I am not very happy about it but it's my own fault for agreeing he could a couple of years ago (thinking it would never happen!!) I met him way back when I was 15 and he was 16 he had motorbikes (in fact that's how we met).

Hubby got rid of his last bike before we moved in together in 1995 and hasn't had one since, so as I have my horses I thought I could hardly complain if he wanted a bike once again.

I shan't be impressed at all if he decides he wants an earring to go with it though!! ;0)

He has been thoroughly over excited all weekend!! 

Friday, 25 March 2011

Sarah Shops Until She Drops!!

Well, not quite!! But I have done a bit of spending today, would you like to see what I have bought?

In the charity shop I found a gorgeous dinner service:

It has the sweetest little roses, which are oh so shabby chic:

And all for the bargain price of £9.95. I was very pleased as a lot of our plates are chipped and I have been yearning for a lovely assortment of mismatched plates so this is a very good start.

I must confess I do find the pricing in charity shops a little odd, the dinner service was priced at a bargainous £9.95 yet a single little square china plate I liked the look of was £7.95 all on it's own. Very odd.

Then I went to TKMaxx and oh joy!! They still had a Cath Kidston duvet cover left!! I had seen them earlier in the month but with too much month at the end of the money I had to resist. Not today though!!:

It was reduced from £75 to £40, which I think is still darned expensive, but I do have a terrible soft spot for bedlinen and it is CK after all!!

I have washed it, dried it and put it on the bed already!!

I also got a lovely wooden crochet hook to try:

I have carpal tunnel syndrome and sometimes find my hands ache when hooking with a metal hook so thought this might help because as well as being lovely to look at, it is very light.

Incidentally, for anyone who fancies giving crochet a try I can thoroughly recommend the book Crochet-Unravelled. I had given crochet a try over the years but never got very far, my Mum (who is an accomplished crocheter/knitter/seamstress) said I was holding the hook wrong so I gave up. 

Then a couple of years ago and once more I was inspired to try and so popped into our local wool shop. The lady in there said that she thought Mums were very naughty saying things like that as to her it didn't matter how the hook is held as long as the stitch is correct. She recommended the book above so I bought that, a hook and some pink cotton and off I went.

I opened the book with hook and yarn in hand and whilst following the simple instructions I was off doing it - Just. Like. Mum. An hour later I excitedly texted her a picture of my first granny square and she replied "I'm so proud, if you can crochet a granny square, you can crochet anything!!"

So, please, even if you think you can't - do give it a try as if I can do it anyone can!! And if you do take the plunge, let me know!!

Have a lovely weekend....

Sunday, 20 March 2011

Spring Is Here - Yay!!

This weekend has been quite a lazy one - we didn't have to go to the stables to do the horses as my friend did them, she has recently got back in the saddle following a break and is playing with my ponies to get her horsey fix.

Hubby went out early and when he came back about 10.00am he brought me these:

Don't they look lovely in my favourite blue jug? I whipped up the crochet "doily" to sit them on yesterday afternoon whilst sitting in the conservatory - I got the idea and pattern from Crochet with Raymond do check the blog out it's another of my rapidly growing list of favourites!!

The daffs smell gorgeous too, I sat crocheting all afternoon and breathed in their scent.

Today Hubby was out all day so I did a bit of tidying and then more crocheting - this time fiddly little flowers to adorn a tea cosy I've made:

The hyacinth we bought last weekend has started flowering overnight too - yesterday they were literally just tight little buds and today look:

I have to be careful where I leave my yarn as Bear, one of our Tonkinese cats is EXTREMELY partial to a bit of wool. He is obsessed with it and will make off with a ball the minute your back is turned:

He likes to take the ball and throw it around and then he takes it to his dinner bowl where he will have a bite of food and then a chew on the ball of yarn. He's a real loon!!

This afternoon after I grew bored of crocheting the tiny flowers I went outside and did a bit of weeding. We are very much novice gardeners and only last year created our flowerbed which we filled with perennials flowers. Today I weeded out the dead stuff and then tried to guess which shoots were our flowers coming back and which were actual weeds!!

We got such pleasure last year from watching the seeds we had sown and the cuttings we replanted flourish in our little garden. 

No pictures of that just yet - maybe next time....

Sunday, 13 March 2011

Spring Flowers and Large Bruises!!

Hello all!! 

You may remember I was off to Ireland for my best friend Vicky's wedding? Well, son #2 and I had a fab time. I hadn't seen Vicky for 10 years and was naturally a little wary that we might no longer have anything in common but I needn't have worried - I had been at Vicky's no more than 1/2 hour before I was sat in the corner of her kitchen nattering away just I had always sat in the corner of her Mum's kitchen all those years ago.

The wedding was lovely, and Vicky looked beautiful. Here she is being given away by her Dad:

I was truly, truly honoured to be asked to do a reading at the church - it was a reading from the letter of St Paul to the Romans:

"Let your love be genuine and sincerely prefer good to evil.Love one another with great affection, and have profound respect for each other. If you hope, this will make you cheerful. Do not give up if difficulties come, and keep on praying; Think of the needs of others. Seek to be compassionate and kind, humble and patient. Be tolerant with one another and ready to forgive, and on top of all of these be loving because, love binds everything in your heart and be thankful.Whatever you do or say do in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. 
This is the word of the Lord."

I took my crochet all the way to Ireland and never even got it out, but I have been busy with since I returned:

I'm making a Granny square blanket which I can through artfully over the elderly sofa in the conservatory:

And because I get bored easily I am interchanging working on the squares with doing this gorgeous crochet bag from Attic24 - Attic24 is one of my favourite blogs and well worth a look.

I've done the bottom and am about to start the sides. Hubby says it looks like a sombrero!!:

I guess he does have a point and it could benefit from a bit of a press....

Now, yesterday I had a bit of a mishap that resulted in this:

I have four horses and stupidly yesterday I lead my cob, King behind my biggest (TC who is a 17.1HH Suffolk Punch X) whilst he was eating - TC thought King was coming to steal his lunch, kicked out and got me on my thigh.

OMG, the pain was incredible!! I was glad that I have considerable padding as had I been a size 10 (which I most definitely am NOT!!) I reckon my leg would have been broken!!

Here is the culprit, giving me a snog:

So instead of getting on with a bit of gardening yesterday afternoon I was laid up on the sofa with a hot water bottle and a selection of painkillers.

Luckily, this morning it was nowhere near as painful as I thought it was going to be so after a nice lay in I manage to hobble round the local garden centre and Hubby treated me to these:

Aren't they lovely? And a bargain too at £5 for eight plants. I am going to keep them in the conservatory whilst they are in flower then plant out. I don't have any plant pot covers and so I wrapped them in brown paper (to hide the boring plant pot), tied with a bit of ribbon or ric rac and placed them in these little soup bowls I got from the charity shop:

I also got myself a hyacinth, which I have been after for weeks as I love, love, love spring flowers:

So, I think that is all I have to report for now!! Do leave comments if you pop by as I really, really appreciate them!!

Bye for now!!