Friday, 30 April 2010

Here kitty, kitty..!

Whilst searching for images for my post about Heidi Burton, I found these wonderful animal prints by Eilidh Borland- they are so simple, yet have such life, that I had to mention them here...anyone who's ever had a kitten will immediately recognise that pose!

Available at Folksy.


Love in the Time of Smallpox...

Heidi Burton works in all sorts of styles, but, by far, the one I love the most, are her totally endearing, absolutely adorable greeting card illustrations...each little person has so much character and charm, yet they're rendered in the simplest of ways.

It's a great skill to know when to stop while you're drawing, and I think her work exemplifies that completely- neither a line nor a dot too many...and they absolutely make you smile.

I even love the style of her blog- each post hand written, then scanned's full of gorgeous little design touches.

Her work is available on both etsy, and folksy, and she has a flickr, too...not that i'm suggesting you stalk her, or anything! :)


Thursday, 29 April 2010

Pots of Fun...well, plates, anyway ;)

Ceramics are, truly, my first love... ever since I went to a ceramics summer school when I was 16 or 17 (over 10 years ago, now...*sob*) I haven't been able to get the wonder of working with clay out of my system. In fact, when I first went to art school, I went to do the ceramics course, and it was only by chance, and circumstance, that I ended up in photography.

As I don't have the facilities to work in clay, I entertain myself by gorging on the wonderful eye-candy produced by the many fabulous ceramics artists out has taken a massive effort to resist posting ceramicist after ceramicist on this blog (Abigail shares my passion...luckily, or unluckily for our bank balance!) but, as we're now trying to post as often as possible, sharing our loves and inspirations as well as our own work, it seems only fitting to show *everything* we love- eve if it means an inordinate amount of posts about pots!

Anyway, I saw the work of artist, Sharon Bloom, today on etsy and thought it was fantastic...perfect for the animal lover, ceramics lover, or just anyone who wants something vibrant and sunshiny on their wall. You simply couldn't help but smile every time you caught sight of your smiley dog, googly-eyed fish, or sneaky looking cat! :)


Sleeping silkily...

This stunning quilt from Ouno designs caught my eye while browsing the front page of etsy earlier today.

Nine vintage, designer silk scarves have been painstakingly patch-worked together, before being backed with a fresh, eco-friendly, naturally coloured, hemp backing- an excellent way of recycling vintage materials, and one that would look stunning in any modernly schemed bedroom.


Wednesday, 28 April 2010

Haberdashery Delights!!

When I stumbled across these amazing linen threads and thread cards from Sajou Haberdashery, it was love at first sigh(t)!

The vibrant, vintage feel of the packaging takes me back to being a child when I would rummage through my grandmother's and mother's sewing boxes, finding goodies from a bygone era when things were made in card and metal, not plastic, and when advertising type was as high quality as the product is was emblazoned on!

The linen thread above has me itching to make a purchase, but the thread winding cards below have my heart beating a little too fast to be healthy... yes, I want to wind some thread, but DAMN, those would look good in a frame!! SOOO pretty... I am, certainly, in love.

Find all of these
Sajou goodies, and more, for sale at Selvedge Drygoods...



I adore children's books, and wondering around the John Lewis toy department a few months ago, I spied this absolute corker.

Billy is a sullen, moody boy with a bad attitude which his father tries to overcome using increasingly outlandish methods- each marvelous spectacle being rebuffed with a churlish "whatever". Until, of course, poor Billy learns his lesson in the most dramatic of ways in the shockingly hilarious finale!

Written and illustrated by William Bee in a subtly retro, but undoubtedly modern, 50's inspired style which suits the tone perfectly, the simple writing and captivating moralistic tale makes the perfect read along book for weeny children, as well as an excellent addition to anyone's collection of lovely illustration (come on! I can't be the only grown-up with a stack of children's books!).


Jelly for Grown-ups!

With summer finally rearing it's head, and the sun peaking it's way through the clouds (however shyly), and with Abi and mine's thoughts turned to parties and BBQs are just the next logical step...

With that in mind, i've idly pottering online this morning, vaguely thinking about parties on our patio, and what fun we'll have once the garden (and the house, for that matter!) is finally prettified enough for public consumption...when I found this this gem of a blog.

Whilst the blog is not exactly pretty, it is very new, and the central idea is certainly unique- jello shots taken to the Nth degree.

Everyone loves cocktails, and everyone loves they've cleverly put them together to make some wonderfully intriguing alcoholic, wibbly-wobbly treats.

Ingredients are listed, but the posts are more inspirational- you come up with your own ratios, matching each little cocktail to your own taste...just remembering that each sachet of gelatine jelly-fies a certain amount of liquid. They use "Knox" brand, which, I believe, can be substituted for this by our UK readers.

Even if you don't wish to use their recipes- the blog is completely inspirational...and the suggestion of flavouring your own vodka, and making your own syrups, could be useful in all areas of cocktail making.


Superheroes: Sartorially!

Just like everyone else in the world who has watched an episode of Project Runway, I love Tim fact, let me rephrase that...I LOVE Tim Gunn!! Fiercely intelligent, dryly humorous, warm, caring, compassionate, witty, well dressed and, well, just plain wonderful, he may well be my idol..!

So when I came across this online, I just had to share- Tim Gunn and Superheroes...dear god in heaven, it just doesn't get any better than this! Superhero fashion reviewed in an endearingly serious manner...who can resist?! ;)

part 1

part 2


Tuesday, 27 April 2010

Oh sweet Lord..!

As confirmation that he probably knows me too well, Ryan emailed me through a link today, thinking I would enjoy it, and to be sure, it combined two of my great loves - stationary and Macarons, and in the most charming of packages, too!

Legendary French confectioners Ladurée have teamed up with uber-fashionable Japanese stationers Mark's and are selling a range of Laduree stationary {think pretty masking tape the same colour as Laduree gift boxes, notebooks adorned with the cutest French pooches and kitsch-tastic Keyrings in the form of faux fancies!} through cult Paris boutique, Collette.

Now, I think I have to go and lie down in a darkened room...sweet dreams are made of this! ;)

Bon Soir!


More Garden Gorgeousness!

As Abi and I are in the middle of filling the garden with gorgeousness (she's been stretching her green fingers, as you might have seen in other posts!) in preparation for the summer (BBQ's and cocktails on the patio...well, if you insist..! :) ), we've been on the look out for anything stylish or unusual we can use to add those final touches- always mindful of price, of course...

Just browsing on the M&S site, I came across these...dotted around the garden on the summer's evening, giving off a soft, flickering light, hanging from trees and branches- you can't tell me that wouldn't be beautiful!

Only 19.50 for the set of three- each a different size (ignore the sizes on the website, though- i'm pretty certain they're wrong!).


Monday, 26 April 2010

Drop Your Drawers..!

This kind of thing isn't normally my taste at all, but there's something about it that has made me completely fall in love...

Styled in the right way, and in the right room, it could look absolutely stunning- adding a touch of dramatic interest, whilst remaining chic and subtle. Texture can't be underestimated in interior design, so having furniture that adds textural interest could inject a gorgeous contrast with the more traditionally textured soft furnishings- a leather chair with a woolen throw on top, sitting beside the chest of drawers, a sheepskin rug on the floor...maybe a matt glazed vase on the chest...

Anyway, if you love it as much as I do, all you need decide is whether to "Save or Splurge"!! :)

Images above- Embossed White Metal Chest, priced £995, and available here.

Images below- Saffron Collection Chest, priced £299.99, and available here.


Sunday, 25 April 2010

Sing-A-Long Time..!

I know they have their critics (for many, and various reasons) and many say that, of the last while, they've totally lost their way, but I was in the car with my niece today and...well...along with my sister and her fiance, I sang my heart out and had the best time...

I should probably explain. :)

My 4 year old niece LOVES singing, and LOVES Disney...loves in that way only a 4 year old can, so she nearly fainted with joy when she got this for her birthday a couple of weeks ago.

So, we're in the car, on the way to the "p**k", and to get some "i**c***m" (we couldn't let her get too excited, she'd just had her lunch!) and she asked to have her new CD on.

I, of course, am horrified (i'm nothing if not a total music snob)...until this:

If anything, I think I might have sung along louder than she did...and all four of us had grins as large as the chesire cat! :)

I wouldn't call myself a Disney fan, but, dear god, when they're good, THEY'RE GOOD!!

Sing-a-long- you know you want to!


Saturday, 24 April 2010

Pretty, pretty...

Prints and pictures are on my mind just now, what with the amalgamation of two households on the very near horizon (!), and because we have begun designing some prints of our own, to be made in the next few months, and to be printed with our amazing Gocco! But much more on that soon...

...this super pretty and romantic creation full of feathers, peony roses and wild flowers galore from The Wild Unknown caught my eye today, it's fresh girlishness like a hit of Spring for the soul!

Find more goodness from The Wild Unknown here... :)


Friday, 23 April 2010

Paper Roses...

There are always times when, no matter how hard we try, someone is just far too impossible to buy for and we ending up getting them a gift voucher...

Unless we know that they'll love it (I LOVE getting money...there is always so, so much on my "to buy" list (especially for work- my art and craft library is getting ridiculous!) that it's the best thing for me!), I always feel a little bit bad about money gifts- they always have the feeling of being a last resort...

So, how ingenious is this...??!
Now you can give someone a gorgeous gift, AND the joy of cold, hard cash- who could ask for anything more?!

here (along with various other bits of origami loveliness), in various values and currencies- perfect for the hard to buy for, and the not so hard!


Thursday, 22 April 2010

Colour Me Bad..!

Did you know just how much your favourite colour can say about you?

Well, this clever little gimmick (found via Trend Bible) uses your favourite colours to predict what sort of person you are, and which career choices would be best suited to your personality! It's quick, easy and, most of all, seems almost spookily accurate...apparently i'm an Organised Creative, whereas Abi is a Creative Organiser- pretty spot on for both of us :)

Why not have a go and see just how accurate it is for you- just click on the link, and follow the super-simple instructions- we'd love to hear your results!


Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Getting Started Gift..!

Whilst browsing the Jme website today (Jamie Oliver's online selection of goodies!) I spotted these fantastic Garden kit gift vouchers! Not only are the vouchers gorgeous - I love the drawings and colours - but they seem to be a fantastic deal that any budding gardener would love to receive!

Upon gifting (or buying) one of these vouchers, and redeeming it, a box stuffed full of all organic vegetable plants or herbs is delivered to your door! I am currently eying up the Large Vegetable garden voucher as the list of plants would surely see you fed through most of the year... and all for 55 pounds!? What a deal! ;)


Tuesday, 20 April 2010

Porcelain Gorgeousness...

Whilst having a quick browse online today, inspired by Oh Joy Eats, I thought I would have a look at the Lladro website...

Now, most of us probably know Lladro from the strange (dare I say ugly), stylized, pastel figurines, so it had never occurred to me to look at their website...and what a shock it was! Some truly stunning, if incredibly expensive, items that i've totally fallen for.

This beautiful jewellery (reminiscent of my own woodland collection, if I do say so myself!) is gorgeously stylish, and manages to be both elegantly simple, yet a definite statement.

The same could be said about the floral vase and butterfly chandelier- stunning, bold statement pieces, that remain uncluttered and delicate.

As always, there are some equally beautiful alternatives for the thriftier amongst us (i.e. me, Mr. Concrete-Pockets!) why not have a look and see which you prefer! I would love to hear what you all think, so feel free to leave a comment :)

This paper version of the chandelier looks like a fun and easy D.I.Y. project, and could be adapted the fit any space, or style of room (just use a different punch, or different paper!) with ease!
Potter Whitney Smith makes some truly wonderful ceramics, and her recent foray into lush, vibrant colours adds a whole new dimension to her collection. Although quite different, her pieces certainly strike the same notes as the Lladro vase- minimal, yet striking, bold, yet subtle, and all absolutely gorgeous! Available here.

Monday, 19 April 2010

Save or Splurge!

As we're in the middle of redecorating, homewares and things of that ilk have been cluttering our collective mind as of late (i've been bullied in to saying collective...really, it's more that Abi chatters and obsesses and I sigh about spending money!).

To keep us both happy (her the "have nothing in your house you believe to be beautiful or useful" sort, and me the "do I need it? is it cheap?" sort) we've been scouring around for beautiful bargains to give our house the look we love, but for far less...we both have expensive taste...(seriously, we can find the dearest thing in the shop from a mile away...with our eyes closed!) so keeping prices down is super important (*turns and gives abi a stern look*)!

So, in that vein, welcome to the first in what we hope will be a series of posts featuring designer gorgeousness, and, what we think, is an excellent bargain equivalent- the look for less. HA!

The fantastic rug from Ikea is handwoven pure wool, measures 2 x 1.4m and costs a bargainiferous £95...
Having seen it in person, this cropped shot gives a much truer representation of the zingy vibrancy of the colours:
It does, however, have more than a whiff of Paul Smith about, if you feel like selling your soul, or offering up your first born, why not try this equally gorgeous, equally handmade, equally wool equivalent from the Rug Company :)


Sunday, 18 April 2010

Getting down and dirty..!

I've been out in the garden trying to create an oasis of calm and beauty... I'm, uhm, not quite there yet - I think a pressure washer and some serious weeding (perhaps with a flame thrower?;)) is needed, but I am planting seeds and giving plug plants some love (well, water and baby-bio - but I am thinking good thoughts!) and things seem to be coming along swimmingly...

See more over at my blog :)

Yay for Spring - now: snow-be-gone!