Monday, 25 March 2013

8 week house AND garden challenge

I don't know about you but I have really enjoyed Naomi's 6 weeks make-over challenge of her master bedroom on on her blog Design Manifest.
So there I was reading away and enjoying seeing the progress .Poor Naomi was looking more and more exhausted and the room was getting better and better.
Poor fool me, little did I know worse was on the cards for me!
Naomi only had one room to do!
 I will be facing a 8 weeks house AND garden challenge  as a lovely lady journalist wants to do a feature on the house and my business, My Aunt Agatha, at the end of May ---.Eeek!! house..looks lovely -right? Hahaha- nooo!
On these cleverly photographed pictures you can't see the pile of newspapers starting from ermm probably 1995 to the present day on the floor next to the the pile of ..emm *old maps, some cables to start the car and an old dog blanket and some more accoutrements from God knows where* next to the front door- amongst other things..and the garden- ouch! Don't even go there  as they say ..

 A major tidy-up of the whole kaboodle here plus some frantic decent curtain making is required.
Plus some mighty inventive ideas for some of the rooms that have had a Cinderella treatment. As Naomi
says : " With a limited budget and unlimited ideas and desires, it truly was a challenge to come up with a distinctive, vibrant yet relaxing bedroom for myself" .
You can say that again !
I am cutting fabric and re-doing curtains as we speak as practically all my curtains are- too short-and - as they are mainly from charityshops , the fabric is either vintage or discontinued so I need to put my thinking cap on..
Then there is the nightmare wingchair in the living room which has a side ripped to fabric spaghetti by the cats
in spite of stern warnings.

O, well..onwards and upwards.
Wish me luck!! The clock is ticking.. gotta go people.

I will keep you on the loop!!
Have a great week!



Thursday, 14 March 2013

Sunny splendidness

It's a good to have a sunny day sometimes - it makes you feel energised and positive..and today was one of those days.Even if it was still pretty chilly, it was great to be able to walk in the sun again.

It was probably the sun that brought out big masses of snowdrops.

 I never really looked very closely at snowdrops before , did you ?

Love the green detail on the bells! These are the wild ones that sow themselves (I suppose ) and spread in big clumps, right in the countryside, outside my house.I see them when hop in the field next to me to take my dogs for a walk.
What a treat and a feast for the eye !!
Wish I could send you all some of these cute and sweet pick-me-ups.
They certainly  made my day today.

Have a great rest of the week, people !!

XO Bea

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Cat rascals

I don't know about you, but for my cats it's crazy time right now. It must surely have something to do with being cooped up too much indoors beacause of the cold weather.

They just make it more exciting by catapulting themselves out of new hiding places or running around like loonies... This is definitely a face just before a crazy run-around !

          O, yes, there's certainly trouble brewing there...I would say 3 seconds before take-off!

         But however much silliness..and chasing each other through the house with big bushy tails..

my cats certainly have their
"hanging all out together " moments too.

 Have a great rest of the week people and stay warm!! It was -4 yesterday evening here !!


Monday, 11 March 2013

Easter and Mother's day display at our stockist

Well, what do you know! Nestled today between an Emma Bridgewater Hearts apron  and an Sophie Allport rose mug, you can see the My Aunt Agatha Mother's Day cushion  at my stockist's shop..- cute as a button.. and slightly creepy too, hehehe.
At least that's what my stockist said : " I like it.. but it's also a bit.. creepy ".
I guess it's the Victorian hand that creeps her out... but I have a real liking for it..

Anyway we're back on track and in a better place than after Christmas when they gave me a whole bag of stock fact we're even in the shop window with the Easter cushion - Yay!

                                                             Such a lovely display..

                                                    Here's a detail of the Easter cushion..

 It may be coming up to Easter but it's pretty chilly down here with snowflakes drifting by the window this afternoon.
So whatever you are doing , keep warm and cosy , people!

Have a great week!



Tuesday, 5 March 2013

Nostalgia for Amsterdam

picture credit Vondelparkpicture here

Parks are fantastic places in big cities.Everyone scooped up in appartments , either in old or new parts of the city, makes their way to the park as soon as the weather is OK. I mostly grew up in the Vondel park in Amsterdam when I was a little girl .

Don't you just love the print on my mum's dress to the left ! I can see that being super trendy right now !!
She was very handy so I bet her dress and mine, and even the bonnet, was made by herself.

She always dragged me in the park, missing the countryside she came from so much.
 I suppose all the gardening and doing craft and making things stems from way back and seeing  my mum doing this herself when I was little.

I was born right in the middle of Amsterdam, in a side street of the Weteringschans.You can't get more central than that.

Here is the street I was born in.Not right on the canal, but a nice little homely street, perfect for young couples.The whole neighbourhood was aware of my mum's pregnancy and did what they could to help after I was born, with a rota of neighbours even bathing me as my mum was ill for a while after my birth.

" I have come to bathe my little Brechtje" one of them would always say when she came round.I supose she preferred that name to Beertje, which was what I was really called.

                                                 picture credit here          

My mum tells me sweet stories of her being pregnant and having a coffee every day at Hotel Americain at the Leidseplein.The waiter would give her her coffee and an extra cube of sugar " for the little one" .

                                                  picture credit here

Then we moved from the centre of Amsterdam to a new appartment in the South West of the city.
The apartment blocks look pretty grim to us right now.

                                                         picture credit here

But for me it was an exciting time as all around us a whole new part of Amsterdam was being built, so around the appartment blocks there was lots of empty wild land that was destined to be built on but full of sand, plants and ditches..perfect for playing cowboys and indians.. and learning about wild flowers too..

                                                          picture credit   here

We even had a small garden - on our balcony- where I grew my first radishes.I did a lot of watering of the passersby with my small wateringcan, as that was much more fun than tending the radishes- especially as we lived on the 3rd floor and no-one knew where the water was coming from , hahaha.

 Here I am with my friend Frans, who always came on holidays with us.Even then he was more sensible than me- he is watering the right plants, and not the heads of people.

I hope you have enjoyed your small tour of Amsterdam in the past.. .. have a great day!!


Monday, 4 March 2013

Easter egg inspiration

Wow! Just looking on Etsy I found some lovely Easter eggs ( decoupaged).. which I thought to share with you for inspiration.

They were made by Catnip Studio Too , which you can find on the link if you click on the name, decoupaged with beautiful floral Japanese yuzen chiyogami papers.

You can , of course, do some decoupage yourself with this particular Japanese paper, and you can also find sellers for Japanese yuzen chiyogami paper on Etsy.
I found two, Mosaicmouse and Crafty Paper Oz  but there must be tons more.

Here's a small selection of this kind of fabulous paper..

Isn't it fabulous!

And of course, if you don't want to buy the paper and you are pretty handy with a paintbrush and paint, you can use the patterns as an example to inspire you , and paint the eggs by hand!!

Here are some more of the fabulous examples of the decoupages eggs .

Now, remember, you don't HAVE to craft your eggs , you can buy them from Catnip Studio Too  if you have no time to make your own. 

I am seriously considering in buying a few of these !

Have a great week, people. whatever you are doing!