Sunday, 12 June 2016

Thrifting, treats and new socks.

Gosh, it's been a while since I last posted. L and E have both had exams and life has been a little fraught. L has now finished and is currently on a walking/climbing holiday in Wales and E has 3 more exams to go over the next week and a half, then we can all breathe out. I haven't really got a lot to show you, but it has been so long that I thought I'd just pop in and say 'Hi'.

I have a few snaps of the garden. The weather has been very muggy recently and I'm desperate for a good thunderstorm to clear the air. Looking at the weather forecast, there seem to be plenty about but, unfortunately, they keep missing us. R spent last weekend feeding the lawn and it was supposed to be watered in ............ we're still waiting! Anyway, here are a few of the flowers that have made me smile this week:

Foxgloves, I have foxgloves people! I have tried growing them a few times in our garden but something always seems to eat them (evidently, they're not toxic to everything!). This year, I tried planting one in a tub on the patio and Ta-Dah!

I'm so thrilled with them and spend many a happy while peeping inside the flowers at the bees - I don't know who is happier, me or them.

My herb tub has filled out nicely and is in full use in the kitchen. I do have a herb bed further down the garden but it's so lovely to be able to just pad outside onto the patio and snip a few.
 My Californian poppies always make me smile; they are such a cheerful little flower:
..... and I'm in a very happy rose place at the moment. I love this one for its glorious fragrance. Sorry, I can't identify it, I'm hopeless with plant names. Anyone know?
I've had a visit to a car boot sale and a couple of charity shops and found a few bargains. I'd spent a merry afternoon cutting some stuff out for E and commented that it would be so much easier with a guillotine. Lo and behold, the following day at the local boot sale I found this. Of course, now she doesn't need anything else cutting, but when she does, I'm ready!
This little sewing table belonged to a lady's 90 year old grandmother who had recently died. There is a bit of watermarking on the top but for the sum of £2 I couldn't resist bringing it home. I think it was partly sentimentality as, apart from my grandfather's war medals, I have nothing that belonged to my grandparents. I was rather surprised that she was selling it but maybe she doesn't sew or has a lot of mementos already. My intention was to paint it - I'm longing to try some chalk paint but every time I have something in mind, I'm vetoed by the rest of the family. I do love the oak but there's only so much brown furniture you can have around the place and if I don't paint it, I shall have to sort out those water marks. Maybe I could just crochet a cover for the top. What does everyone think?
My final boot sale find was a couple of galvanised buckets that I'm using as planters. They have just got pots popped in there at the moment.
 My trawl round the charity shops yielded an earthenware jug (it's really heavy!) and a book.
Also this week, I finally finished my Blue Tit socks. Sorry I don't have a photo of a blue tit for comparison. I find them quite tricky to capture on film anyway and the leaves on the cherry tree are currently hiding the feeders. Anyway, here are my socks. These are my second pair and they are still not perfect but I'm slowly getting better.
I've already cast on a new pair using this yarn. It's another British bird yarn from the West Yorkshire Spinners. Can you guess the bird?
 This one is 'Owl' and this is as far as I've got:
Finally, I thought I'd give myself a little treat this week (well, it is a stressful time with all these exams!) and ordered myself a new project bag from the lovely Jooles at Sew Sweet Violet. It arrived yesterday and I am thrilled with it. Her sewing is so perfect and she adds lovely little details like rows of kisses. I do love her blog and adore her choice of fabric.

 It's currently holding my Patchwork on the Go tins and the finished stars:
 They just fit snugly inside and I find that I'm desperate to go on a train journey, so I can take it along.

Anyway, that's all for this week. I am still popping by to read about what you have all been up to, even if I don't have as much time to comment at the moment. It will get better, I promise.
Have a smashing week.

Toodle Pip for now. x


  1. Love those foxgloves, and I always peep inside ours too! The markings on the petals are beautiful! Your socks are great. I have the Peacock colourway to have a play with at some point. Your little wooden table is lovely, you ought to see if you can find a library book on French polishing. Or if not, I would go for the 'distressed' look. Your new bag is very pretty, I am off to check out her blog! Have a good week. xx

  2. A lovely post. Life is a bit hectic around here too, so blogging has taken a back seat. I adore foxgloves too (who doesn't) and was thrilled last year when some self seeded from who knows where last year. The sewing table os a little gem. Perhaps live with it for a while before you decide whether to paint it. I am heading into exam territory next week with Alfie. Urgh!
    Leanne xx

  3. Your plants are all looking so pretty. I don't know that rose either but how lovely. I hope everyone does well with their exams so they can just enjoy the summer. Take care and have a good week.

  4. Your garden is doing so well! Glad that the exams went/are going alright. I wonder if you could paint the top of your table and leave the rest? I think it would look pretty. Love your new project bag!

  5. Those foxgloves are gorgeous - could the rose be 'Gertude Jekyll'? I have two and they smell deliciously fruity. I'm not sure I should advise you on the sewing table as I have a reputation in my family for painting everything pale blue! Your socks are amazing - I'm very impressed by sock knitters and am a bit intimidated by socks (knitting them, not socks in general). The little project bag is very pretty - we all deserve a treat sometimes. Good luck to E, we have 2 more to go in our house. The end is in sight!
    Cathy x

  6. Love foxgloves and the new bag. I'd give the painting a go I think. Maybe a light blue colour? Xx

  7. The foxgloves are stunning! You have found some great things recently. Love the jug and your project bag too. The table - go for the paint!

  8. Foxgloves are wonderful flowers aren't they, enjoy yours! Your little table is lovely and what a bargin! The project bag is delightful I love the little touches.

  9. A lovely post. Your foxgloves are so beautiful, one of my favourite flowers. Perhaps I should try growing them in pots. I love your project bag, it is so pretty. I am sure you will breathe a sigh of relief once all the exams are out of the way, such a stressful time for parents as well as the people sitting them. xx

  10. So many great things in this one post. The herb tub has caught my eye, a cool idea and so pretty.

  11. Great post. I can't grow foxgloves either, even the white ones I sowed into pots and planted at the allotment disappeared. Your sewing table is lovely and the oak has a really nice grain. How about just painting the top? But don't use chalk paint which is v. Expensive and doesn't give a very nice finish I think. Instead lightly sand the top to get a 'key' and then apply at least three coats from a £4.25 tester pot of Farrow and Balll, for example, and use masking tape to get a nice clean edge if you like. Then wax and buff with any old beeswax polish two or three times. I've upcycled several pieces of junk furniture in this way. Your big tub of herbs is splendid and the project bag just adorable and I'm desperate to gave a go at sock knitting ...

  12. I like Sarah's idea for that lovely sewing table. How lovely that you finally grew foxgloves, they seed everywhere in my garden, I think they like the light sandy soil. Your herb tub is pretty! Oh....that little bag is just the sweetest thing!xxx

  13. I love fox gloves too. One of my favourite childhood memories is of watching bumble bees almost disappear inside each blossom for nectar, then reverse out. We had quite a few in the garden of our current house when we moved there, but my children were toddlers, and I hoiked them out because they were poisonous. Stupid really, neither of my boys ever ate plants or flowers, they didn't have the appetite for them! The sewing table is lovely. How nice that you know the story behind it too. X