• Happy Halloween!

    by  • 31/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Halloween 31Oct14 | Country Days | Country Homes and Interiors

    Light up your pumpkins and stock up on sweet treats, trick or treaters will be a-knockin’ this evening… it’s Halloween! We’re getting into the spine-tingling spirit by shortlisting our top spooky happenings taking place this weekend; from eerie walks around haunted castles to terrifying tractor rides through enchanted woods, they’re not for the fainthearted!

    Fright Night
    Sacrewell Farm & Country Centre, Peterborough
    Take a creepy tractor ride through the Enchanted Wood, where you’ll be abandoned and left to walk back through the farm on your own. Be warned – something awaits you around every corner! 31 October, 6-9pm (not suitable for children under 8 years old). call 01780 782254 to book.

    Halloween at Wookey Hole
    Wookey Hole Caves, Somerset
    There’s all sorts going on at this thrill-filled event; watch magic happen before your eyes at the Halloween Magic Circus Show, explore the haunted fairy garden, brave the brand new 8D Dracula ride, enjoy a special tour of the world famous caves, home to the witch of Wookey Hole, plus much more! Runs until 2 November (suitable for families). Book here.

    Haunted Castle Ghost Tour
    Dover Castle, Kent
    Are you brave enough to wander around Kent’s most haunted castle after dark? Discover the myths and legends surrounding this atmospheric English Heritage site and hear of ghostly visions from those who’ve experienced them first hand. Runs until 2 November, 10am–4pm (suitable for families). Book here.

    For those of you who can’t say boo to a goose, let alone a ghoul, never fear, we’ve shared a less scary idea, too – perfect for all the family!

    Pumpkin Festival
    Piglets Adventure Farm Park, York
    A top destination for outdoorsy Halloween fun, there’s loads to enjoy, including spooky storytelling, trailer rides to the pumpkin patch, hook-a-pumpkin games and an eerie-sistible barbecue. Take part in the Halloween fancy dress parade, the scariest costume wins a prize! Runs until 2 November, 10am–5.30pm.

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    Meet Katie Mawson

    by  • 29/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Katie Mawson | Country Days | Country Homes and Interiors

    Katie set up her designer knitwear company in 1991 and now works alongside her husband, Chris, from their lovely little garden studio in the Lake District. They design and make knitted, felted accessories from lambs wool, such as hats, scarves and gloves, as well as interior items including cushions and throws.

    What made you want to become a designer?
    I’ve always wanted to make things that were different from anything else. As a young teenager I would collect wool from hedges and fences in the Cumbrian countryside where I grew up and experiment with spinning yarn and making garments.

    What’s your work space like?
    It is full of bits and pieces that inspire my designs. I get ideas from nature, as well as odd scraps of pictures and swatches of fabric. I also love experimenting with the visual effects that can be achieved with colour and pattern.

    What makes your company special?
    I am keen to keep my business hands-on, without the need for any mass production. Everything is made by me with the help of two knitters who work from home. We wouldn’t want anything to leave us if we were not personally satisfied that it was beautifully made.

    Where’s your favourite view?
    On the top of Blencathra in the Lake District.

    Describe your creative style in three words.
    Textured, colourful and structured.

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    Snuggle up in a hibernating haven

    by  • 28/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Country bedroom Country Days Country Homes and Interiors

    If those dark autumn mornings are making you feel like pulling up the bedclothes and hibernating, here’s the perfect country bedroom to do it in –  and one that was a big hit with the Country Days team!

    This gorgeous space has the architectural feel of a French chateau, so a beautiful weathered oak and cane Louis XV style bed (the Versailles from Feather & Black) makes the perfect centrepiece, creating an elegant and romantic mood.

    Toning wooden furniture and accessories, plus a palette of toffee shades and mellow rusts and golds, gives the scheme an instant autumnal hit. And now that the clocks have gone back, an oversized statement wall clock may come in particularly handy…

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    Download your free Bonfire Party special!

    by  • 27/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Country Days, Country Homes & Interiors, Bonfire Party

    Country Days loves Autumn for the get-togethers and celebrations that happen around Bonfire Night. So we’ve created a fantastic FREE 10-page Bonfire Party special for you to download. You’ll discover how to wow friends and family with a feast of feel-good recipes and ideas, including Homemade Pheasant Burgers, Cumberland Sausage with Pear Butter, plus a warming Mulled Cider.

    Make sure your Fireworks Night goes with a bang! Click here for your Bonfire Party special!

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    Festive door curtain

    by  • 26/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Panelled door curtain |countrydays| country homes and interiors blog

    Brighten up dull doorways with a jolly checked and deer patterned curtain – perfect for installing a little Christmas cheer. Ideal for keeping rooms cosy, this curtain is featured in our December issue and combines colour and comfort in it’s design. To learn how to make this for your home click here.

    If you like this idea we have lots more easy craft projects  for you to try. Or for more country crafts, recipes and room ideas, why not try our new Country Home Ideas app?

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    Time to hibernate

    by  • 25/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Time-to-hibernate-country-days-moodboard

    Here at Country Days we are loving autumn and looking forward to winter – the perfect excuse to layer up and hunker down. As the clocks go back this weekend and the nights draw in, it’s time to get cosy with roaring fires, flickering candles, snuggly throws and luxurious rugs. Take inspiration from our moodboard to help you make the most of the darker evenings when the only place you really want to be is relaxing in the comfort of your own home.

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    Visit an arboretum

    by  • 24/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Arboretum Country Post | Country Days | Country Homes and Interiors

    Treetops ablaze with vibrant red hues, golden carpets of fallen leaves crunching underfoot… there are few places as inspiring as a beautiful arboretum on a crisp autumn day. We’ve shortlisted our top three for you to visit this weekend, each offering a stunning setting to enjoy nature’s glorious seasonal changes, as well as a host of exciting activities, from fungi forays to organised tree climbing.

    Thorp Perrow Arboretum, North Yorkshire
    This unique arboretum plays host to some of the largest and rarest trees in England. Join experts for guided autumn walks and fungus forays, or visit the on-site Bird of Prey & Mammal Centre for the opportunity to watch flying demonstrations, learn falconry and much more – a fun day out for all the family.

    Winkworth Arboretum, Surrey
    Wander down twisting paths to find secret glades and hidden views at the picturesque arboretum, set in a dramatic hillside location surrounding a magnificent lake. If you’re feeling adventurous, take part in one of The Great Big Tree Climbing Days, taking place on 26 Oct and 2 Nov – not for the faint-hearted! Click here to book tickets.

    Westonbirt, The National Arboretum, Gloucestershire
    Situated just three miles from the traditional Cotswolds market town of Tetbury, this extensive tree collection is known worldwide for it’s spectacular autumn colour. Crafters will love Autumn Art Attack, taking place on 27-31 Oct – pick up a self-guided trail and meander through the trees, before getting creative at an array of workshops.

    Looking for more weekend ideas and inspiration? Sign up to Country Post, a weekly newsletter from us to you every Friday.

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    Artist in residence: October view

    by  • 23/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Country Days, Country Homes & Interiors, Artist in residence

    Fresh from Sarah Hough‘s sketchbook is this week’s seasonal picture… ’I painted the view looking across Plush towards Dorset Gap,’ says Artist in residence Sarah Hough. ‘I couldn’t help but add a flush of colour!’
    Also known as the Dorsetshire Gap, this area is well known to ramblers who come to walk and explore the ancient tracks that have used by travellers since the Middle Ages.
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    Treasure memories

    by  • 22/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Style setter Hannah Brown | Country Days | Country Homes and Interiors

    Hannah set up her online shop Hannah Brown Interiors in 2011, selling decorative wall art designed to capture and preserve special moments and memories. She also offers a bespoke service and has framed all manner of nostalgic pieces for her customers, from fishing flies to maple leaves.

    What do you love about what you do? 

    Creating bespoke pieces for people is wonderful as they always share their stories with me. It’s often something that really means a lot to them, for example, one customer wanted framed Gingko leaves because their father  planted a Gingko tree in every house they lived in. It’s the personal memories behind my pieces that really make them special.

    What techniques do you use?
    Waxing, painting, sawing, gluing… all sorts! A lot of the preparation is making the frame itself, I always make them by hand. I like to make a home for the objects I frame, a home that does them justice.

    Where do you work?
    I don’t have a studio, I work from home. We have a four storey house so there’s plenty of room. I mostly work in the kitchen, but on a warm day I’ll open the doors and move everything outside. This is where I most love to be, outside with a pot of coffee, waxing wood for my frames and taking in the wonderful view of trees in front of me – one of the reasons we bought the house!

    What do you hope to achieve with your products?
    I want my pieces to not only fill a space on the wall but evoke real emotion in people, like refreshing a memory.

    Where’s your favourite view?
    In Anghiari Tuscany where I got married – not telling you where though because it’s mine!

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    Cosy up with natural touches

    by  • 21/10/2014 • 1 Comment

    Ready_Country living room Country Days Country Homes and Interiors

    Fireside moments leave us feeling all toasty here at Country Days, so we loved this country living room with armchairs by Neptune in a warm woollen check brought bang up to date with a modern colour palette.

    What we really love about this scheme, though, are the hints of nature – the scattered pinecones and purple hydrangeas (the colour of which is picked up beautifully by the lampshades).

    And all eyes lead to the fireplace with the mantelpiece decorated simply with pinecones, rosehips, cosy candles and striking botanical art (by Neptune) on the chimney breast.

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    Fall for trees

    by  • 20/10/2014 • 0 Comments

    Country Days, Country Homes & Interiors, autumn treesCountry Days loves a beautiful autumnal tree and, as leaf colours go, this Acer palmatum ‘Osakazuki’ caught our eye. Shimmering red shades and delicately carved leaves are two of its highlights, but also look at that sassy shape – definitely a seasonal showstopper.

    What’s your favourite tree for colour right now?

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