• Archive for September, 2013

    Country moment: squash harvest

    by  • 30/09/2013 • Country food, Country moment, Country style • 0 Comments

    I was very pleased to take a snap of these beautiful winter squashes at my local farm shop this weekend. I’ve always had a soft spot for this robust and bulbous vegetable that comes in many colours, shapes and sizes. I’m happy to roast them or just sit them on the kitchen windowsill where they can make me smile. What do you do with yours?

    Country moment: squash

    Lovely squash

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    Country craft: panel cushion

    by  • 29/09/2013 • Country craft • 0 Comments

    Panel cushion, Country Homes & Interiors blog

    Make your own panel cushion using a denim style fabric and contrast a toile pattern.

    Get creative with this stylish toile panelled cushion sewing project with easy to follow step-by-step instructions from the Country Homes & Interiors team.

    Cushions are a simple way to add interest to a room, even more so when they feature a little bit of pattern. We love how this cushion, just by having a narrow toile panel instantly draws the eye and lifts this moody blue room. For this cushion, featured in our out-soon November issue we used LF1633C/14 SAIL denim from the Drift collection, £43.90 a metre, Linwood for the main fabric and Chinese Toile, £73.80 a metre, Lewis And Wood for the contrast panel. The cushion is easy to make. Simply follow our step-by-step guide.

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

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    Country garden: harvest time

    by  • 28/09/2013 • Country moment • 0 Comments

    With the arrival of autumn, harvest celebrations all over the country are showcasing all the wonderfully abundant fruits of the season. Keep an eye out for one taking place near you over the coming few weeks.

    We like the look of the new Grow! Cook! Eat! event at the beautiful West Dean Gardens in West Sussex next weekend, 5th and 6th October. It’s an extension of their annual Apple Affair and will be a chance to see the impressive harvest from their orchards (where over 150 varieties of apples and pears are grown), the walled gardens and Victorian glasshouses.

    Foodies will love the cookery demonstrations, showing how to make the most of locally grown produce. And for Bake Off fans, Mary Berry and 2012 finalist Brendan Lynch will be sharing some of their favourite recipes. Can’t wait!

    Enjoy the apples in West Dean’s orchards…

    …and wander through the amazing pear archway

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    Country buy: New at St Jude’s

    by  • 27/09/2013 • Country style • 0 Comments

    Inspired by wild flowers and country fields, printmaker, painter and designer Angie Lewin has created this stunning new Meadow’s Edge fabric collection for St Jude’s. Featuring sketches of tall stalks, flower heads and plants that grow nearby in native country fields, it’s screen-printed in the UK on natural linen.

    Meadow's Edge cushion covers, £36 each by Angie Lewin at St Judes.

    Meadow’s Edge cushion covers, £36 each by Angie Lewin at St Jude’s.

    This new design, available in four earthy autumnal colourways, offers a simple way to bring nature to life in your home through soft furnishings.

    Fabric on chairs, Meadow’s Edge, col Mustard/Dawn Grey; Background fabric, Meadow’s Edge, col Charcoal/Dawn Grey, both £48 a metre, Angie Lewin at St Jude's.

    Fabric on chairs, Meadow’s Edge, col Mustard/Dawn Grey; Background fabric, Meadow’s Edge, col Charcoal/Dawn Grey, both £48 a metre, Angie Lewin at St Jude’s.

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    Country food: it’s crumble time

    by  • 26/09/2013 • Country food • 1 Comment

    simple plum crumble

    Orchard harvest: this simple plum crumble sums up the season

    It’s British Food Fortnight (lovebritishfood.co.uk to find out what’s going on in your area) and to celebrate we’ve got a recipe for the most classic homespun dessert of them all. Nothing quite signals the arrival of autumn like the smell of that first crumble coming out of the oven. But move over apples: gorgeous homegrown plums and damsons are in season right now and they really are the stars of the show when topped with comforting crumble. To serve 4-6 depending on your portions, you will need…

    For the fruity base:
    8-10 plums
    4–5 tbsp caster sugar

    For the crumble topping:
    75g unsalted butter, chilled
    175g plain flour
    pinch of salt
    50g caster sugar

    1 Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas 4 and set a baking tray on the middle shelf to heat.

    2 Cut the plums in half and remove the stones, then cut the halves into quarters if they are very large. Toss them with the sugar and tip them into an ovenproof baking dish.

    3 To make the crumble topping, rub the butter into the flour with the salt until it resembles rough breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar.

    4 Lightly scatter the topping mixture over the plums. Place the dish on the baking tray in the oven and bake for 40–45 minutes until golden brown. Remove from the oven and serve warm with cream or custard.

    *Recipe from Clever One Pot (£7.99), the latest book in the Dairy Cookbook series. Featuring 100 delicious recipes for fuss-free food, it’s available to buy for £7.99 online dairydiary.co.uk, by calling 0845 0948 128 or from your local milkman.

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    Country style: Fall in love with tailoring

    by  • 25/09/2013 • Country moment, Country style • 0 Comments

    Its back to business as Autumn arrives and this season one big trend for home decoration is a smart casual style inspired by fashion for the English outdoors. Traditional tailoring and button detailing found in tweed jackets inspires this look. Smart fabrics such as tweed, twill and herringbone are used for upholstery, in carpet design and on wallpaper. The casual edge is achieved by layering and mixing the designs so a sofa may have arms and back cushions in one fabric and another for the seat. Stick to a natural palette ranging from chocolate, forest green, and nutmeg for a true country interpretation of this style (as shown here) – or use wilder colour combinations such as black, pink and red, for a more contemporary edge. For more Autumn decorating trends take a look at our October issue, out now!

    tweed

    Walls,Tartan, Lichen, Lewis & Wood. English Field tweed jacket, The Great English Outdoors. Dogstooth waistcoat, Welsh Blanket Company.

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    Best of country style

    by  • 24/09/2013 • Country moment, Country style • 0 Comments

    Decorex and Focus, two of the key interior design events of the year, were inspiring places to be yesterday. Humming with stands and showrooms previewing the best fabrics, wallpapers, paints, lighting and furniture, these shows are a melting pot of  home-grown talent and global brands and the places to shortlist the best emerging trends for country style. Here’s a quick sneak peek at some of the things I loved…

    The beautiful mineral colours of the Aegean Fabrics at Sanderson

    The beautiful mineral colours of the Aegean Fabrics at Sanderson

    The pretty freshness of Celeste from Villa Nova

    The pretty freshness of Celeste from Villa Nova

    Linwood's Roots & Fruits from its fun Ephemera wallpaper collection

    Linwood’s Roots & Fruits from its fun Ephemera wallpaper collection

    The rustic luxe of Leonida from Harlequin

    The rustic luxe of Leonida from Harlequin

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    Country room: cosy bedroom

    by  • 23/09/2013 • Country style • 3 Comments

    With days and nights cooling down, it’s time to think about cosying up to combat the shivers. Take some tips from this gorgeous beamed country bedroom with its modern take on cottage style as it sets the scene nicely for the evenings drawing in.

    There’s something instantly warming about berry shades and cosiness is brought to this statement wall and window treatment with a floral scroll design in a pretty cranberry shade from Laura Ashley.

    A neutral wing armchair adds a period touch to the scheme and is the perfect place to perch, especially when it’s comfied up with a plumped-up wool check cushion.

    Finally, a good night’s sleep is guaranteed by layering up thick knit textured blankets to provide the ultimate in cosy bedding. No more waking up in the night feeling the cold!

    xxx xxx

    Southwold chair, £950; Parker blanket, £75; Elsham blanket, £120; Cranbourne cushion, £42; Sheringham natural rug, £175; Cranberry Ironwork wallpaper, £30 a roll, and fabric, £25 a metre; all Laura Ashley

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    Country craft: Floral bag

    by  • 22/09/2013 • Country craft • 1 Comment

    Floral bag, Country Days blog, Country Homes & Interiors, craft, bag, floral, flowers, handmade, how to make, homemade,

    This pretty decorated bag is perfect for brightening up the mood whilst out and about on rainy days. To make follow these simple instructions from the Country Homes & Interiors team.

    To make the floral bag you will need
    A plain shopping bag
    Felt (optional)
    Pre-cut felt flowers
    Fabric glue
    Buttons
    Scissors

    To make the floral bag, first cut out large flower shapes from the felt. We cut ours by freehand but there are lots of free flower templates available on the Internet. Position and glue these all over the bag. Glue a layer of pre-cut felt flowers on top of these then glue buttons in the centre of each flower. For an even easier floral bag design, but equally as impressive, just use lots of pre-cut flowers – the more the merrier!

    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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    Country garden: saving seeds

    by  • 21/09/2013 • Country moment • 0 Comments

    Everything is going over in the Country Homes & Interiors rooftop garden and it’s time to put it to bed for the winter. The produce has been harvested and the flowers and herbs are starting to set seed. The raised beds and containers look a bit sorry for themselves now, but it won’t be long before we have them cleared and composted. Then we’ll be ready to start planning next year’s productive plots.

    Before we do that, though, there’s an opportunity not to be missed. We’re waiting for a nice dry day to collect all those precious seeds. They’ll keep well in small envelopes, sealed and labelled. It would be nice to store them in a pretty tin until it’s time to sow them in spring – perhaps something like this lovely vintage Sutton’s Seeds tin from Garden & Wood. What do you think?

    We love this vintage seed tin from gardenandwood.co.uk

    We love this vintage seed tin from gardenandwood.co.uk

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