Category: accessories

Understand..

 

(This is a re-post while my holiday happens, which is maybe while it feels pertinent to bring it up again….)

 

Many times it’s the word on the street that carries more weight than slick advertising ever can: Modibodi, as sworn and praised to me by two very good friends and worn by their daughters, newly at secondary school and newly coming to grips with monthly meetings of Auntie Flo…

 

 

This brand designs modern, period proof underwear, with – and it takes a while to get the head around this – no need for anything other than washing at the end of the day. No leaks, no stains and no worries….

 

Amongst their many designs, they also produce swimwear – either a one piece or bikini bums.  Which quite frankly blows-my-little-mind: For a young teen this could quite literally be a game changer…

(All pics Modibodi and Pinterest)

 

Prices aren’t cheap, but then again, forking out every month isn’t either.  And you can add on the saving to the environment…it really makes these look like no brainers.

 

Time to purchase my basketful…

Laters, Kate x

Summer Project x

 

Every summer needs a project. Something that requires learning a skill, but nothing so taxing the chances of success always remain a once wished dream. I also believe tools and ingredients matter – low cost, simple and preferably eco friendly;  I think this one gets A stars in all the right boxes – a crocheted rag rug.

 

The best instructions and most of these pics come from this brilliant website – My Poppet, and this youtube channel has easy crochet instructions.  But the necessary bits are easy to gather – you need a good supply a jute string (you can you wool, I just believe the jute gives it a unifying look as well as being strong and sturdy), a crochet hook and lots of unwanted clothes and material scraps.


 

The idea of cutting up unwanted clothes, particularly the things the children have grown out of really appeals. It’s that feeling of history and memories and life continuing on.  The aim is to cut the cloth into one inch strips, then roll them into useable balls.  There’s different ideas about how to attach different strips together, some people like to sew the strips together, others just overlap the strips and crochet them together as and when.

 

 

The crochet required to make the rug is literally the most basic stitch you’ll ever need – this isn’t about doing anything complicated, but more about time and care and working in slow time.

 

 

The size you go is totally up to you.  The one tip I’ve read over and over again, is when it starts getting big, crochet on a flat surface to keep the rug flat.

 

 

(pics from My Poppet and instructions here)

Circles of life.

Love it.

 

Laters, Kate x

Waterworks x

 

For the last week, autumn decided to roll into London instead of July: Grey, swollen clouds, heavy rain, a significant drop in temperature and most surprisingly, strong, bough wrenching winds.  They say Thursday will mark the change back to summer again. I hope so.  I would like some more summertime in the garden, particularly now we have a water feature.

 

 

(All pics Pinterest and Outdoorliving)

 

This is ours, hidden in the lavender.  We wanted moving water to cool the air on really hot days. And it helps that the birds are delighted with our choice, particularly Mr Robin.

 

Fingers crossed the sun will be back at the end of this week.

Laters, Kate x

Shagged x

 

Needing a natural rug? One with a bit of an edge? Something a little different?

 

 

Well, hold the doors, because when it comes to floors, Tate and Darby are a little treasure trove: A design-led ethical brand, they believe in finding the balance between design being accessible to all against ensuring all their artisans are fairly paid. Their rugs are designed in the UK and then woven by skilled craftsmen and women in Morocco and India, which means a further flavour of marrying contemporary and traditional that touches everything they do and makes them quietly sing like a beautifully rung handmade bell.

 

(All pics Tate and Darby and Pinterest)

Ding. Dong.

Laters, Kate x

Light Up x

 

I’ve looked at all sorts for a focal light for the garden studio.  The obvious choice was something large and rustic, like these amazing Moroccan shades.

 

 

Or embrace the macrame.

 

 

This one from IKEA is lush.

 

 

The final choice was a step away from obvious, a return to vintage and celebrates the clean lines of the fifties.

 

 

(Pics: moroccan lights, Ikea light, Pinterest)

 

Found on ebay, this understated beauty catches the eye without dominating the small space, and its age injects soul and timelessness.

 

Decision, tick. Next one…

 

Laters, Kate x

Windows x

 

Ebay is not a safe place for me at the best of times, but now with an official project – let me write that again with capital, authoritative letters – Official Project – as my cover, it is very dangerous; our kitchen is beginning to look like a reclamation yard.  But oh, the pleasure! These are the stained glass panels I have snaffled – genuine Victorian, everything between £50 – £60 (which I think is good value, though they do  need work). I have visions of them over the doors, at the back of the pod, even in the apex space between the roof. Who knows where their final resting place/places  will be, but I am loving the colours – the pale pinks, the greens and then the contrast of the strong blues and reds. I can imagine sitting on something comfy with a cup of tea, looking at the garden, with the late afternoon light sliding through making patterns on the floor. The real bonus was finding painted centres as well – look! A duck!!


 

(little cough..I have three of these…all slightly different. All insanely gorgeous)

 

 

This is possibly my favourite – a caterpillar! Such a great metaphor for life, the universe and everything…

 

 

Little glowing bits of handmade, re-cycled, re-loved heaven.

Now for the lights…..hehe

 

Laters, Kate x

Favourites x

 

I am an avid Pinterest poster.  Driven by all things visual, I find it a place I can nail down fleeting thoughts and find substance to inspiration. It’s the workings of my inner mind, but held in aspic so it doesn’t fly away again. It’s also my way to test longevity – a day, a week, a month later, is there still the same reaction?  Sometimes things are pinned for the wrong reasons – on one level it’s a sofa, but the real magpie glint is the inspiring colour of the wall. Sometimes there’s a purpose, often there’s not, the intent just to trail a hand in the flow of colour and movement, pick up the scent of future trends. But this post is about what has caught other people’s eyes, what has unexpectedly cut the mustard in the big, wide world? Like this chair, from Ian Snow, has a remarkable 1.6k impressions.  Is it the velvet? the flexibility? the squish? Or all three?

 

 

It’s summer, the 70’s are becoming a thing. No surprise then that all things rattan are having a moment. Like this light from Etsy, 123 impressions and counting.

 

 

This one, again from Etsy. A bargain at £32.53 plus shipping. 104 impressions and rising.

 

 

This light is ranking third – from Design Vintage at £110 has 94 impressions.


 

At 110 impressions, this modern garden pod has caught the imagination. It comes from a photo I took from the Home section of The Times. No details unfortunately.

 


 

Is it the bench? Or the cushion? The link was for the cushion – £45 from Dibor –  915 for  impressions.

 

 

(All picks Pinterest)

 

The cushion on its own….444 impressions.

 

It’s a strange old world.

 

Laters, Kate x

 

Light my way x

 

I’m not here. I’m in a car, driving to Bristol, genuinely quite excited about experiencing a motorway again and moving wider than a 2 mile circle from the house.  We’re emptying The Husband’s work flat as he’s going to be in London till at least Christmas; Every cloud. The plan is to make a round trip in a day – normally a ticket to hell, but all of that has been subtly reframed by the thought of travelling at speed, the prospect of a horizon and the promise of new vistas.  Aren’t I the lucky one? These pictures were taken today – Sunday afternoon has become a potter time for me – projects to plan, things to do.  And this represents the first time I’ve tried to re-make candles.

 

 

The first thing was to get rid of the bits of wax left at the end of all the finished candles.  I found the best way was to pour in boiling water, which melted the wax, making it rise to the surface to create a wax plug that was then easy to remove.

 

 

My eclectic collection of containers, from tins to pots to old candle jars.

 

 

The wicks I ordered very cheaply from Ebay.

 

 

And stuck down with a dab of glue from a handy glue gun.

 

 

This was the super candle that inspired the re-make – a winter candle from the White Company with it’s gorgeous smell that died leaving lots of wax.  I melted down in a pyrex bowl over a saucepan of boiling water.  Once the lump of it became soft, I cut it up into smaller bits to speed up the melt.  I also added all the remnants of the other candles, because why not? Once everythings melted it’s possible to add various essential oils.  As the kitchen already smelt like a tart’s boudoir, I refrained.

 

 

Pouring in the liquid wax is not the easiest thing. I recommend a funnel.  Then I improvised with tin foil to keep the wicks upright and central.

 

 

Highly satisfying and highly recommended.

Laters, Kate x

Feathered Friends x

 

I’m not sure if we’re in lockdown in London any more, maybe it’s a strange transition period, like wondering what to wear between seasons?  Because, despite the rhetoric, nothing has really changed for us; we’re still spending the majority of time in the house or garden.

 

 

But it gives me the time to salute some of my heroes of the past couple of months: The birds…their activity – the magpies that make me laugh, their song – we have a particularly vocal blackbird, their curiosity – yes, I’m speaking to you, unafraid Robin who watches me just a foot away when I’m gardening, the stories they tell – I’m gazing at nearly arrived swallows from my desk heralding the start of summer, and just their continual zest for life: nothing fazes them.

 

 

This post celebrates the inventive, simple but attractive ways we can introduce more of their joy into our lives.


(All pics Pinterest)

 

Which will hopefully lay down strong foundations to repay their gift and help them through the colder winter months.

 

A circle of life I value.

 

 

Laters, Kate x

Laundry Life x

 

The weather has changed. A strong wind is blowing in from the north, dropping the temperature by ten degrees plus.  As I look out of my study window there’s still enough blue to patch a Dutchman’s trousers, but the heavy grey clouds look like they could gather and coalesce at any moment.  Now half is dark, fast moving cloud, the rest blue.  The clouds are being chased away.  But there’s more behind.  Would you put your washing out today?

 

 

There’s something inescapably romantic about clothes on a washing line

like the playing cards of a family laid out for all to see.

 

 

Fresh air whipping the wet into submission.

 

 

The downside can be rust marks from wooden pegs, lack of flexibility from solid wooden pegs, and brittle plastic pegs that age and snap.  Hence the joy of these babies by Pincinox: Stainless steel, designed for life, packaged with care and vintage love.

 

(All pics Pinterest and Pincinox)

 

Made in France, but buy now and the shipping to the UK is free.

 

 

Laters, Kate x