About Me

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antrim, antrim, Ireland
Hello and welcome to my blog. If you like flowers and gardens, housey stuff, food and banter, then this is the place for you. I am a decorative artist, florist and maker of things. I sell painted furniture, plants and crafts, through a local retail shop, in my native Ireland, and wedding flowers from home. I am married to a lovely patient man and have a smashing little girl. I blog for the fun of it. Thank you for listening.

Sunday, 11 December 2011

Flowers in the House

I posted a little while back about a book called 'Vintage Flowers' by Vic Brotherson. I wanted to make a ball of Hydrangea as featured in the book. Unfortunately, I ran out of dried flowers and didn't get the ball completed, so I set it on top of an urn and turned it into an arrangement. It really was just as well, as I do not have high ceilings and don't know where I would have hung the ball! I added my own little touch also, by adding a little glitter to the edge of some of the petals, and I think the effect is very pretty. See the closeup image below.

A gorgeous little fairy I purchased from Lynn at http://sea-angels.blogspot.com/.

Lovely pink tulips curving inside the fishbowl for a change.

 I made a wreath from oak leaves and added a folk art angel,purchased from Flossie Limejuice on Etsy.
I am linking with Jane from  Small but Charming for her monthly 'Flowers in the House' post. Love Linda x

Christmas Decorating

Kitchen with a traditional red colour scheme. The Danish pixie on the wall is an advent calendar.

A few years ago I bought this cream tree, which I find very difficult to decorate, when colour is added it doesn't look right and when it is all white or cream it can look drab. I saw this idea to make it into a snowman on Pinterest and thought it would be fun.

The mantle in the living room will be decorated with a swag of greenery and some flowers and candles when it gets nearer to Christmas. I bought this lovely little guardian angel bear from Flossie Limejuice on Etsy.

I painted a chalkboard in the hall and added some childlike merchants houses and snow, and I must say I really love it.

The Christmas decorating has begun in our home. I have to admit it is a bit of a palaver, getting everything out of the garage, changing my mind  about which tree to have where and how to decorate them, and I absolutely hate having to put it all away again. Once they are up I do love them so.

I do love a real tree, but they don't seem to love me. I have had so many disasters with them, that I have decided to give up and just go for the artificial ones. When it gets close to Christmas I will make garlands from pine for the staircase and the fireplace, so that we get that wonderful smell, and the vibrancy you get from fresh greenery. I will also have lots of berries, holly, mistletoe, viburnum and snowberries, if I can get them. I love to have hyacinths everywhere, for the heavenly scent and of course loads of candles, for atmosphere.
I wanted to put a few more photographs on but my camera is playing up. Instead I will put on some inspiration from Pinterest. I hope you are all enjoying the time before Christmas and I apologise in advance if I am not posting as regularly as normal, but you know how it is! Love Linda x

To keep this sense of wonder, is the secret of staying young! All above images from here.

Wednesday, 30 November 2011

Something old, something new!

Image from Pinterest. I am linking to Laura's post of the month club. Click on her button on the sidebar if you wouls like to take a look.
Sparky, our Westie, has to approve of everything that enters!
 My daughter has caused a little bit of chaos around here as she decided she would like more room in her bedroom , and would like the single bed from the guest room instead of her double bed. After much hauling about and shoving and a little dismantling, I managed it...solo.. I hasten to add! Now though, the guest room has one large bed in it and not much room for anything else, so virtually every piece in the house has been moved to accomodate this change. It has been a bit of a marathon. I can't really complain though, as my daughter knows that furniture can be moved, because I am always doing it!!! Anyway, the bathroom cupboard was moved to Lois's room to house her clothes and I needed something rather desperately for the bathroom. I headed off to one of the many charity shops and found this little number for £10. I snapped it up, and set about it's transformation.

Firstly I gave it a jolly good clean with an abrasive cleaner, then sanded it lightly. It has glass panels in the door of the cupboard, but I didn't want that, so rather than take it out, I painted it with blackboard paint. I painted the whole thing with a primer first, then the blacboard panels, 2 coats. When that was dry, I masked it off and painted the rest in Farrow and Ball's Pavillion Grey.I then varnished the grey with 2 coats of matt varnish. I drew numbers on the glass panels and drawer with chalk and then sprayed them with hairspray to stop it rubbing off. Finally I lined the drawer  with a cute pirate's map paper. So. what do you think of it?

 Last week I won a giveaway on lovely Abby's blog my spotty pony, it was a gorgeous flower arranging book by the late Jane Packer. I was so delighted to receive this on several levels, because it was Jane's and she so sadly left us recently, and I have always been an admirer. Because I have seen it featured in magazines and had wanted to own it, and also because it was Abby's giveaway! So what a lucky duck I was to actually win it. Now if you don't know Abby's blog you must go and visit, she is a most charming and kind person, who does a marvellous job, helping people with disability's overcome them ,by learning to ride a horse. She owns a gorgeous horse called 'Spotty', hence her blog name.Her blog is not all about horses though, it is most varied and interesting. She is so generous that she even sent a lovely chocolate owl for my daughter, who was most impressed. So thankyou Abby, from Lois and I xx.

Lois says thankyou!

I found some lovely Christmas decorating ideas at Martha Stewart,I thought you might like. This weekend Lois and I will put up our trees, so I am frantically making room and getting ready.

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Have a wonderful weekend. With love, Linda x

Lovely gingerbread houses. (One year I put gingerbread men on the tree in the kitchen, when we came down the next morning, we found all these little wires lying on the floor, and the gingerbread missing from the lower branches. Sparky (our Westie) had had a lovely little midnight feast!

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Count Your Blessings!

Happy Thanksgiving to all who partake in it! I have a lot to be thankful for, apart from my lovely family, I think the thing that I am most thankful for, is my home. My Mum was a great homemaker, she moved homes many many times in her life and she always said 'your home is in your consciousness', and because of that she could pick up and start again,wherever she happened to be.At this time of year I often think what it would be like to be a homeless person, living in a cardbord box, sleeping on the street. My heart goes out to all who find themselves in that situation.

I could go on and write a long list of all the blessings I'm counting, but instead I will show you some lovely images to represent them.

Sparky, our West Highland Terrier.

Paul and Lois.

Looks like butter wouldn't melt doen't it?

Happy Thanksgiving! Love Linda x  Images which are not my own are from pinterest and Tumblr, for which I also give thanks.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Vintage Christmas.

I have been having a little fun making corsages to adorn Christmas presents. It all came about when I bought a book called 'Homemade Gifts Vintage Style' by Sarah Moore. I had actually gone out to get a biscuit decorating book by 'The Biscuiteers',it was out of stock and so whilst looking around I found this rather lovely book.

The funny thing is, that Sarah Moore, the author of this book is also co-author of the Biscuiteers book.....small world. I decided that the corasges would look lovely on presents and would be quick and easy to make. The author said that once you start you will find it hard to stop, and she was right! They are simply varying sizes of fabric circles stitched together and then a safety pin sewn in the back. I was thrilled to be able to use up some linen and lace doilies that have been hanging around for years! Old bits of broken jewellery and buttons come in handy too!

For the children in the family, I added these little felt animals that I made last year.

Lots of dogs for my daughter!

Normally I have a colour scheme and theme with my Christmas wrapping. Last year it was brown paper hand stamped with words and doves and wrapped with string. This year it will be more ecclectic to tie in with the corsages.

To keep me entertained whilst making, I listened to Christmas music. I know it's a bit early, but the truth is, and I know it's a bit sad, but I absolutely love it. Every year I buy Starbucks new Christmas cd, because they are usually a quirky mix of various artists, and I just adore the artwork. This year though, the whole cd is by' Pink Martini', and I am not so sure about it, but it's early days, I only bought it today! Then there is the lovely Michael Buble, his cd is fab, I will have it worn out by Christmas!

This will be my next project from the book, a fabric wreath covered with kitschy bits and baubles, it sooo takes me back to my childhood! So sorry if I've been boring you with Christmas stuff too early, but I just love Christmas, and I am beginning to get in the festive spirit.

Thankyou all so very much for your most touching and heartfelt remarks on my last post, it meant the world to me! Have a wonderful weekend, love Linda x