It started with our new Makers & Merchants range - chocolates, sweet and biscuit tins in beautiful bold red packaging. Which gave us the perfect excuse to go ahead and order Falcon's enamelware in pillarbox red. And throw in the adorable teapot and mug to the range. Sitting alongside our old faithful Duralex and Weck glassware, we soon realised we had a proper utility kitchenalia thing going on. So why not add some red topped storage jars and Archivist matches into the mix? Really, really useful, plain and simple, and now we're on a roll so watch out for phase two, utility diner-style, coming soon.
Our resident Christmas fairy pulled this little masterpiece together; a length of our glitter wrap as a runner; pearl glassware, cloches, milkbottles and milkglass cakestands for tableware; tags and parcels crafted from our fab new stationery range; a sprinkling of paper confetti and striped paper straws for colour. Possibly the prettiest Christmas table ever laid.
From top left: London Postcodes Print £35 | The Spitalfields Candle Co. Large Classic Candle £25 | London on Two Wheels Map £4 | The Gentle Author's London Album £25 | City Cycling: Europe £25 | A Pub For All Reasons Map £4 | London Villages £9.99 | Royal Tea Mug £9.95 | London Style Guide £16.99 | An Uncle's Guide to London Map £4 | Around the World 70g Chocolate Bar | Food Lovers' London £12.99 | An East London Companion Map £4 | The Map of Spitalfields Life £4 | Eat London 2 £20
This works really well if you have a glut of fruit in the garden...
2 kg grapes
4 cooking apples (sliced but don't peel or core)
800g sugar (depending on quantity of juice)
1. Remove grapes from stalks and put in preserving pan with apples and water
2. Bring to the boil and simmer for 30 mins
3. Strain juice through jelly bag overnight (or for at least 4 hours). And don't be tempted to squeeze the bag as this will make your jelly cloudy.
4. Measure the juice into preserving pan and bring to the boil
5. Add sugar (for every 1250 ml of juice, add 800g of sugar)
6. Return to boil and continue to boil until setting point is reached (if you put a teaspoon of jelly on a cold plate the surface should wrinkle when pushed).
7. Pot into Wek jars and seal.
We started out down on a snowy farm in America with rustic trucks and log cabins, then we discovered the Pennsylvania National Christmas Centre and fell in love with their Woolworths five and dime store circa 1955. Throw in plenty of red and white candy stripe and some original red fairground lighting and ho ho ho, Christmas at The Hambledon 2013 is here.
The whole of the back of the store has been decked out with stocking fillers, decs, wrap and accessories; beautiful snowdome baubles and wreaths, festive kilner jars and cupcake kits, glittery paper garlands, party hats and crackers, potato guns and bumper packs of love hearts. Let the fun begin.
Ah, the gallery wall. Having a moment right now, and when done right, all the ability to transform an uninspired room. The key words here being 'when done right'. Proceed with caution and have a read of these pointers for getting it just so.
1. Rather than sticking to one form, round up photos, art, even momentoes for a more individual and intriguing ensemble - comic strips, children’s scribbles, concert tickets - it should all mean something to you.
2. Using the same frame for each piece can be dramatic, but usually only works if you're displaying just photographs. If you're mixing art and photos then choose frames that complement the individual pieces.
3. If all of your pieces are identical in size a grid pattern layout is extremely dramatic. If your collection has a variety of different objects, frame sizes and frame styles then an asymmetrical arrangement is your best option. The trick to laying out an asymmetrical arrangement is to have a common axis which the pieces are lined up on.
4. The arrangement should read as one unit so keep the frames close to one another. Somewhere between the width of the frame and 5” will ensure the composition is pulled together.
5. Before hammering into your wall, mock up your gallery on the wall using craft paper and washii tape.
6. When you're happy with the layout, start in the center of the composition and hang that piece first. The center should hang at around 5’ off the ground at eye level. Then, piece by piece hang the other pieces moving from the center outwards.
7. Stand back and admire your handywork.
We remain rather partial to a pom so were super impressed and inspired by this rather spectacular creation courtesy of one of our favourite blogs. Get the how to here at the lovely Oh Happy Day!
Possibly the prettiest, daintiest china we ever did see just arrived courtesy of Bodo Sperlein, a London agency designing on behalf of leading Japanese porcelein manufacturer Nikko. The collection goes by the name of Macaroon. Most apt when you consider the blush colours, soft edges and the fact they look way too good to put to funtional use. Yup these little pots and plates, cups and jugs are to be treasured and admired, spared for high days and holidays, accompanied by a box of Ladurée we think.
We have gone paper decoration mad here. It's a paper explosion in the project space. Check out bunting, fans, garlands, honeycomb balls and ice cream cornets. Hell yes, every party should have an ice cream cornet. It's time to celebrate.
A trip to Copenhagen for a womenswear and menswear show turned into so very much more. We couldn't leave these beautiful cushions behind. They're a little bit naval signals flags (squares, triangles, squircles) but the colours are anything but nautical. Think this Summer's neon pops in home accessories. Choose from cotton duck or luxurious knits. All the best dressed sofas should be wearing these.