Pretty in Pink

Something I am always on the lookout for are china sugar bowls and milk jugs, especially with  pretty pink flower patterns. 

I love the thought of days gone by when tea was a proper ritual.  Teapot, sugar bowl, milk jug, dainty cup and saucer.  Today everything is rush, rush, rush.  Sadly, its not likely anytime soon that the four men in my home would join me in my love of this ritual.

 When I was a single, childless, girl about town, I would regularly sit  on my balcony, looking out to sea, sipping my tea delicately from a china cup and saucer and flipping through my vogue magazine pretending to be a "proper" lady ! Ha! Little did I know that my neighbours (now very  dear friends) would watch me and smile at my "grandeur".


A collection of some of my bowls and jugs all but one purchased from Ebay.  The only thing I resent about winning an item off Ebay is usually the postage cost makes the item not such a great bargain .



This Sailsbury Regency bone china sugar bowl is a real favourite of mine.  Won for 99p on Ebay but with a hefty £3.95 postage. Bah !



The wonderful ashtray above was a real find at a car boot last summer at just 20p.  Filthy dirty in a box of junk, I spotted the pink swags and when I picked it up discovered it was back stamped with a mark from The Ritz ! The stories it could tell.  Hope they don't want it back anytime soon. 

Take a minute to pop over and discover the other pre-loved treasures found by those taking part in .MagpieMonday

Plate Passion

I have a passion ! 

for a pretty plate, it doesn't even have to be in perfect condition.  If I love it, I love it !

Over the years I have collected many, some are now chipped, some cracked and a few broken.  I am not precious about them, this is the beauty of paying (mostly) pennies for my lovelies. 

I use them everyday, the family are used to my mismatched bits and pieces.  I think it adds to their beauty.  I will say though that I don't put food on the cracked and chipped ones for obvious reasons but I cannot bear to part with them.


A Selection of my lovely plates



My most expensive single purchase £4.50 for this totally too die for Johnson Bros Pareek Bone china plate



Really pretty Noritake Plate



I love the fact that the guilding is worn on this gorgous softest of soft pink plate (make unknown)

The smallest room in the house

With so much work to do on the house when we moved in, after the first job of ripping up all the filthy carpets (see previous post).  We decided on our limited budget the one place we could afford to sort straight away was our upstairs loo.

Before (apologies for the poor quality of the photo (BB - Before Blogging ) 



AFTER


AFTER - Blue & white stripe wallpaper Laura Ashley sale, Bunting won in an auction on Ebay £4.99


Hubby has spent hours and hours bringing the original door handles back to their former glory.  They were almost black with dirt and age on all the doors in the house when we moved in.  Pretty hearts again an auction find on Ebay.


Love this wooden sign, cheers me every time I go in the loo.  Won in an auction on Ebay for £9.99, Hearts also off Ebay, gorgeous designer material (can't remember price or name)



Nautical inspired porthole mirror, the only item we have in our home that came from my OH's previous home (that he shared with his previous partner !) I am assured he choose it ! LOL!  

There you go the first before and after pics of the smallest room in the house.


My Shabby Valentine

Happy Valentines Day ! 

Hearts and the colour red, perfect symbols of Valentines day.  Here are a few of mine, dotted around my home reminding me of my life and my loves.




Above - in a corner of my home, a shaker style chest of drawers fits perfectly.  On top are two tin hearts, one red, one white, picked up from a boot sale for 20p for three, I have seen them retail for £9.99 each !  The lovely white wooden photo frame is from The  Range and cost approx £5.  In it is one of my favourite black and white  photographs of myself and No 1 son on my wedding day.  The Laura Ashley lamp base was purchased in their sale (can't remember how much I paid)  The red Shade from Ikea.





Above - 3 pretty hearts hang from the door of my work unit.  This was picked up for a song from IKEA and was a horrible grey colour, a few quick coats of paint and now its a gorgeous white work station. ( more on this at a later date).  The white wooden "LOVE" heart was a gift from the lovely Vintage Amethyst  I popped over and couldn't resist several items in her Winter sale, including the red gingham christmas tree heart. I love it so much I couldn't bear to put it away until christmas and have it hanging on the unit door.  The white wooden heart with red decoration was another boot sale find, I got 2 for £1 !





Finally, upstairs in my bedroom I have this gorgeous framed card. I bought several of them from Etsy to sell in my shop but couldn't resist keeping one for myself.  Machine stitched on Silk dupone the beautifully simple "LOVE" word says it all.  Framing the card in a simple white box frame from The Range, makes a unique and inexpensive picture.  The red candlesticks a gift from a friend were from M & S and the beautiful heart glass vase is by Lalique, a gift to me from my husband when we married (in the days before we had to count every penny).

HAPPY VALENTINE'S xx

Take a minute to pop over to Missielizzie and take part in Magpie Monday.  If you love vintage finds you will love this.



Start Small

When we moved to this house from our previous large newbuild home, we were overwhelmed by all the work that was required.  On the day that we moved into the house we dropped Jacob off at school and the twins to nursery then with the help of some very good friends we set to work moving in.

The first thing I had to do before any furniture was taken off the removals van was to have the men rip up all the filthy stained carpets. I couldn't bare the though of my 6 month old babies touching those floors.

 I found my friend upstairs in the bathroom sitting in the bath sobbing her heart out and scrubbing away at the dirt !  "Karen , what have you done !  You can't live in this filthy house"  She was beside herself, she knew how we lived and the beautiful home we had come from.  But we had no choice, we had to make this house work, there was no going back.

I have found the way to cope when a situation seems overwhelming, is to start with something small.  Something you can control and make an immediate difference to (this goes for all aspects of my life and not just decorating).   For me it was important to get rid of the carpets, even if it mean bare, cold floorboards. I knew I would freak out if I had to put my children and furniture down on those carpets.  We lived with those cold bare (but clean) boards for 4 years.

and  all down to my husbands hard work we went from this ......


to this ........


Colour me ........

BLUE

One of the things I enjoy most about having a mostly white house is how I am able to change the look of a room by using the  inexpensive bits and pieces I have collected along the way.  Most of my large pieces of furniture are white or blue, but these can easily be accessorised using different soft colours.  Shabby chic style is all about soft, worn looking tones.

I thought it might be a nice idea to have a regular feature on my blog showing how I use different colours to decorate and accessorise the rooms in my house.


In this photo you can see :

My gorgeous Blue and White The Regent China Cup and Saucer picked up at a boot sale for £2.20. Its such a pretty set I have it out on display on a table next to my work unit. 

The book is decorating with blue and white by Gail Abbott - purchased off Amazon for around £7.  I never buy new books off Amazon unless I can get them for the same price as the used ones are selling for.  I mostly buy hardbacks as they are much better value for money, its an absolute feast of gorgeous pictures and I often flick through it on cold, miserable days.

The "vase" in the foreground was from the Laura Ashley sale several years ago and has fab blue accents. It currently sits in the centre of the dining table with white glass baubles in it. I think it cost about £10.

On the windowsill are lovely pale blue glass tea lights purchased in a sale from a local Florist. £6 for 4 and they came in a lovely zinc coloured flower pot.   Florist shops these days can be a great source of accessories.

The Large white vase is one of my latest finds. Grabbed quickly off the shelf of a local Charity shop. This gorgeous, heavy, quality Arthur Wood China vase cost me the princely sum of £4.

So there you go, my first Colour Me  Post - What do you reckon ?  a keeper ?

Welcome



Hi,

Welcome to the first post on my new blog. Throughout all the homes I have lived in as an adult the theme has always been white.  For me it means peace, harmony, cleanliness and brightness. 

People have always commented on my homes and one friend once likened one flat by the sea, as being in God's waiting room.  I loved that image. Pure white everywhere from the walls, sofas, furniture and ornaments. 

Even my children haven't escaped my white mania.  Children in white, makes most people laugh.  "Are you mad" "think of the dirt" but I can think of nothing more beautiful than a baby in a snowy white romper or a little boy in a classic pair of white cargo shorts with a navy and white stripe polo shirt.

Over the course of this blog I want to show how we transformed our run down 1930's Art Deco House in Devon into a haven of white and shabby chic style.  All achieved on a VERY tight budget, with the amazing skills of my husband and my love of a bargain.

I also hope to be able to set up shop on here to sell some of the lovely pieces I have collected along the way.

ooh! and in case you were wondering, no that's not my house in the picture...