• Archive for July, 2011

    New Emma Bridgewater collection

    by  • 29/07/2011 • Country style • 2 Comments

    Being a huge fan of Emma Bridgewater’s beautiful pottery, I love the new Innibeg Breakfast Set designed exclusively for Sarah Raven. The pattern is based on a piece of pottery found by Emma’s daughter, on the beach outside Sarah’s holiday cottage in Scotland. Inspired by the piece they found, Emma thoughtfully designed and made the china gift set as a surprise for Sarah. Five years on with it still being her favourite, Sarah has decided to make it available to buy – so we too can all fall in love with it.

    1/2 Pint tea mugs, £18.95 each; 1/2 Pint jug, £22.50 each, all part of the Innibeg Breakfast collection at Sarah Raven's Kitchen Garden.

    1/2 Pint tea mugs, £18.95 each; 1/2 Pint jug, £22.50 each, all part of the Innibeg Breakfast Set at Sarah Raven's Kitchen Garden.

    Cereal bowl, £19.95 each; Side plate, £15 each; 1/2 Pint tea mug, £18.95 each; 1/2 Pint jug, £22.50; 1 1/2 Pint jug, £33.50 each, all part of the Innibeg Breakfast collection at Sarah Raven's Kitchen Garden.

    Cereal bowl, £19.95 each; Side plate, £15 each; 1/2 Pint tea mug, £18.95 each; 1/2 Pint jug, £22.50; 1 1/2 Pint jug, £33.50 each, all part of the Innibeg Breakfast Set at Sarah Raven's Kitchen Garden.

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    Line a basket with pretty fabric

    by  • 28/07/2011 • Country craft, Country style • 0 Comments

    Featured in our out-soon September issue, this is a great idea for turning a wicker carrier into a sewing basket.

    We used two lovely fabrics (Vintage Paisley by Sarah Hardaker and Tilda by Villa Nova) and joined them together to make a patchwork-style lining. Great for storing all your sewing bits and pieces.

    If you fancy having a go, you’ll find the instructions here. For more inspiring summer projects visit Housetohome. Happy sewing!

    Use offcuts of fabric to line your basket.

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    Roof garden update

    by  • 28/07/2011 • Country moment • 0 Comments

    The garden is full of blooms and mini-beasts this week. Spotted over the last few days have been lots of ladybirds, bees and butterflies basking in the very welcome sunshine. The flowering calendula and nasturtium are adding a dash of colour to the ever present greenery too.

    Tasks for this week included clearing away the peas and pruning back some of the tomatoes. We’ve a few bare spaces now on the patch which need filling. A job for next week!

    Calendula and leeks

    Calendula and leeks

    Calendula flowers

    Calendula flowers

    A visiting bee

    A visiting bee

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    Heirloom quilts

    by  • 27/07/2011 • Country craft, Country style • 0 Comments

    I just thought I’d share these photographs of modern crafter Cassandra Ellis‘s  gorgeous handmade quilts. Made in her Sussex studio each of her quilts are specially created to commission – some made to celebrate a marriage, new life or to remember a loved one. If the idea of creating your own quilt inspires you, she also runs classes from her studio to introduce contemporary quilting, which shows you how to piece together and make a quilt. You can even take along your own special pieces of cloth. The next class is held on Sunday 7th August, costs £95 for the day and includes everything you need plus lunch, tea and homemade cake!

    Cassandra Ellis quilt

    Cassandra Ellis quilt

    Cassandra Ellis quilt

    Cassandra Ellis quilt

    Piecing together a quilt

    Piecing together a quilt

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    Summer drinks

    by  • 26/07/2011 • Country food • 0 Comments

    Here at Country Homes & Interiors we love making our own cordials but find our kitchens sadly lacking in stylish bottles to decant them in to. Lakeland (lakeland.co.uk or call 015394 88100) has a great range of preserving bottles. The one pictured here has a ceramic cap, is made from recycled glass and holds 500ml. It costs £3.99. Stock up now then you’ll have a good supply handy for rosehip and elderberry cordials in the autumn.

    This Ginger and Lime Cordial recipe is so refreshing on stuffy summer days. To serve two, you will need…

    crushed ice

    lime wedges

    100ml Buderim Ginger Refresher (£2.69 for 750ml from Lakeland)

    juice of two small limes

    400ml sparkling water

    Fill two glasses with crushed ice and lime wedges. Mix the Ginger Refresher, lime juice and sparkling mineral water together in a jug then pour into the glasses. Load on to a tray, carry out to a quiet spot in the garden and serve.

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    New Children’s collection

    by  • 22/07/2011 • Country style • 2 Comments

    The arrival of the Nursery Tales collection from Jane Churchill was met this week in the office to a resounding ‘aaah’. Collaborating for a second time with Dragons of Walton Street the new range revives many of our favourite childhood characters – with Paddington Bear, Beatrix Potter’s much-loved furry creatures and the traditional images of Winnie the Pooh and friends.  Each charming design features across wallpaper, fabrics and trimmings making the perfect excuse to update Children’s bedrooms and playrooms.

    London Paddington wallpaper, £48 a roll; London Paddington fabric, £39 a metre, both Jane Churchill.

    London Paddington wallpaper, £48 a roll; London Paddington fabric, £39 a metre, both Jane Churchill.

    Winnie the Pooh and Friends wallpaper, £48 a roll; Winnie the Pooh balloon embroidery fabric, £59 a metre, both Jane Churchill.

    Winnie the Pooh and Friends wallpaper, £48 a roll; Winnie the Pooh balloon embroidery fabric, £59 a metre, both Jane Churchill.

    Beatrix Potter wallpaper, £38 a roll, Jane Churchill.

    Beatrix Potter wallpaper, £38 a roll, Jane Churchill.

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    Kitchen garden update

    by  • 21/07/2011 • Country moment • 2 Comments

    With the weather being so woeful of recent, the garden has had a bit of a bruising. Jobs for this week saw us dealing with the aftermath from the downpours with some more re-caning and tying up of the beans, peas and tomatoes to give then a chance against the rooftop conditions.

    The weather is also having an impact on some of the crop harvests. The usual high yielding runner beans and courgettes are struggling to bear much fruit with the lack of sun. It would be interesting to hear from anyone else who’s had problems with the weather – and even better to get some growing tips! In the meantime let’s hope for sunnier times ahead.

    The weather weary garden!

    The weather weary garden!

    Runner beans

    Runner beans

    Our green tomatoes

    Our green tomatoes

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    Time to indulge yourself

    by  • 20/07/2011 • Country style • 0 Comments

    Try the Neom Organics Sumptuous range for utter relaxation

    We met up with Neom Organics founder Nicola Elliott this week to find out what she has planned for the rest of the year – look out for the lovely new candle, which is launched on 1 August. Meanwhile our favourite here at Country Homes & Interiors (and Neom’s current best seller) is Sumptuous, which has rose to calm and soothe and precious neroli (orange blossom) to lift your spirits and calm the mind. With all the fuss over the paraffin and other harmful toxins found in candles that’s been hitting the headlines recently, it’s nice to know Neom candles are made using only vegetable wax and pure essential oils rather than synthetic fragrances so they burn without releasing pollutants in your home. We’ve got together with Neom to offer you a real treat – from 6pm today until Monday you will get 20% off when you order if you quote the code ‘country days’ (1 code per order, not applicable on items already discounted). Visit www.neomorganics.com or call 0870 460 4677.

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    Get stitching

    by  • 20/07/2011 • Country craft • 0 Comments

    Looking for an easy way to start sewing? Then try one of these simple projects shown in this great new book 1, 2, 3, Sew (£16.99 Chronicle Books).

    Written by craft blogger Ellen Luckett Baker of thelongthread.com, it takes the hard work out of learning to sew with its step-by-step approach, guiding the reader through a variety of stitching skills and techniques. Each project is grouped together under sections including ideas for organizing the home, stylish soft furnishings, and even kids creations – see below for some of my favourite craft ideas.

    1, 2, 3, Sew, by Ellen Luckett Baker, £16.99, Abrams and Chronicle Books

    1, 2, 3, Sew, by Ellen Luckett Baker, £16.99, Abrams and Chronicle Books

    Organizer projects from 1, 2, 3, Sew, by Ellen Luckett Baker, £16.99, Abrams & Chronicle Books

    Organizer projects from 1, 2, 3, Sew, by Ellen Luckett Baker, £16.99, Abrams & Chronicle Books

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    Vintage style accessories

    by  • 15/07/2011 • Country style • 1 Comment

    The lovely new Pick ‘n’ Mix accessories from designer Megan Price are on my wish list this week. I love her nostalgic collection of screen prints, tea towels, tote bags and mugs with their fun designs, reminiscent of childhood trips to the seaside. They’re a simple way to add feel-good graphics to your home – ideal for kitchens or children’s bedrooms. You can see more of Megan and her full Mr.PS collection this weekend at the Craft Candy fair in Sheffield.

    Pick 'n' Mix and Favourite Flavours tea towels, £9 each from Mr.PS

    Pick 'n' Mix and Favourite Flavours tea towels, £9 each from Mr.PS

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