The Villa on Mount Pleasant

Lifestyle, vintage home and decorative crafts...

Tuesday, 29 October 2013

Fabric Pumpkins

 






Hello everyone!

A few weeks ago, I shared my #craftblogclub covered notebook project with you, if you didn't catch it you can see the post here.
Emma at Life Is Peachy Tales set us our next mini project at the beginning of this month - a Halloween themed craft that we haven't tried before.  I have to admit, to start off with I was more than a little stumped as to what I was going to do.  How could I possibly adapt my love of vintage colours and materials to a Halloween theme?  
Then I spotted these beautiful fabric pumpkins all over Pinterest, and I knew I had to give it a go.  I may be predictable, but I love pretty with a vintage twist and these bejewelled pumpkins fit the bill perfectly.  Plus I could use materials and fabric I already had in the house.
I looked at several tutorials before merging a couple together to come up with the easiest way to make them.  I am a very lazy crafter, and cut corners wherever possible!  Next year I'll do a proper tutorial with pictures (I didn't plan ahead this time!)  but here's what I did in a nutshell - the lazy crafters fabric pumpkins.

Materials
A variety of fabric-I used some vintage, an old blanket, and some stretchy velvet I bought from eBay.
Stuffing-I used stuffing from an old pillow, and some dried haricot beans to weigh them down a little.  (This is what I had in my cupboard, but you could use dried lentils or rice too.)
Twigs, sticks or driftwood for the stalks
Needle and thread
Trim-ribbon, lace, buttons, brooches, anything you like!

Cut fabric circles in a variety of sizes.  Use plates as a template-I used a huge platter for the biggest pumpkins, a large plate and a regular sized plate to give me three different sizes.

Take your fabric circle, and tack round the edge, using large stitches.  When complete, pull it so that the fabric draws together to form a pouch.  Before pulling it tight, fill the pouch with stuffing, and enough dried beans in the bottom to give it some weight.  When full, pull your thread tight and fasten, making sure you have space to put your stalk in.

Disguise any gaps between the hole and the stalk with your trim and decoration.  I found with the blanket fabric, that I was left with a large hole at the top.  I hid it with satin trim and a brooch.  These pumpkins are not perfect, and this is the lazy crafters version - but I managed to make them in the space of two hours on a Sunday whilst the children were watching a Disney film, so quite frankly I was delighted with them, flaws and all!  

I am off to my parents on Wednesday night with the children for a little half term break, and I can't wait.  They are doing a Halloween party for the kids, and in preparation I took them to the Pound Shop the other day, where we filled our bags with Halloween tat.  Face paints, lanterns, silly sweets, stickers.  Although I adore my fabric pumpkins, the biggest pleasure is seeing the children's faces light up with their little bags of Halloween swag.

Have a fab week!

Tamsyn x
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Sunday, 27 October 2013

Picture Washing Line






Hello everyone!

Just a quick post from me today, I just wanted to show you what I'm using my glittery pegs for.  I've printed out some favourite photographs from when the children were little and made a picture washing line using twine.  I'm thinking of doing coloured glittery pegs for the childrens bedrooms, so they can peg their favourite photo's, postcards and birthday cards onto their lines, a sort of memory washing line!

Enjoy the rest of your Sunday, I have a Halloween themed craft post which I'm really excited to share with you this week!

Tamsyn x
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Friday, 25 October 2013

Glittered Pegs






Hi everyone, Happy Friday!

As you can probably tell, I love glitter and sparkle, and here's a little idea craft idea that I tried this morning with very pleasing results.  I recently bought some mini sparkly pegs form TK Maxx which I love, and when hanging out my washing recently (ahem, bear with me on this!) I noticed that my old pegs had weathered beautifully and would look lovely given the same treatment.  I picked up a tub of glitter from Hobbycraft, applied PVA glue to one side of the peg, and tipped lots of glitter onto the glue.  I left it to dry and then tapped the excess off, leaving me with six beautiful, glittery pegs.  So quick and easy.  I have an idea of what I'm going to use them for, and I shall share that with you on Sunday!

Tamsyn x
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Thursday, 24 October 2013

Pastel Velvet Flowers





Hello everyone!

The light was so lovely yesterday afternoon that I made the most of it by taking some photos.  A bit of pastel pretty for a Thursday!  The clocks go back on Saturday, which means it will become more challenging to take pictures once velvety darkness of winter is upon us.
We have something in Norfolk called the Fairy Fair a tiny mini festival of all things fairy, pirate and nature, with a heavy dose of live music and delicious food thrown in for good measure.  It's an organisation set up to try and reconnect people with nature - they have bell tents and teepees where they do children's workshops - wand making, make a mini fairy garden, and elf training camp.  I have taken my children a few times, and it is absolutely magical, I highly recommend it if you are in this neck of the woods.  The next one is in May and if I manage to get tickets I'll take some photos to share with you.
Anyway, I digress - they have beautiful little market stalls at the fair, and a couple of years ago I bought these little velvet flowers from one particularly pretty stall.  Once I got home I regretted not buying more, I love their vintage colours so much - if any of you know of anywhere that sells flowers like this, please do let me know!  

Tamsyn x


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Sunday, 20 October 2013

Car Boot Treasure






Hello everyone, I hope you had a lovely weekend!

Yesterday morning I dragged myself out of bed, pulled on some scruffy jeans, a big coat and a beanie, and went to a car boot fair, the first one I've been to since the beginning of September.  It takes a certain level of dedication to the cause of hunting for vintage treasure, to go out in public with no make up on, but I did it, and only frightened a few small children in the process.  It was so worth it though, because I came home with this little haul.  
The coronation tin came from my favourite house clearance seller, an elderley gentleman who always wears a shirt and tie, and a big overcoat, even in the summer.  I've bought several things from him over the last year, but you have to be prepared to rummage amongst the boxes lined up in rows next to his van.  30 pence per item, or fill a bag for £1.  Lots of crockery and bric & brac, and in the summer he had lots of vintage bed linen.  This tin was so dirty when I found it, that I struggled to see HRH at first, but I bought it thinking that I might be able to clean it up, which I managed to do with a little Cif and gentle rubbing.
I paid 50p for the vintage glass bauble, which came from a similar stall, and 50p for the pair of Babycham glasses.  Sadly the little deer on both have lost their colour, but I don't think that detracts from their charm.  I adore the vintage baking equipment, and I've always wanted some lovely vintage cooling racks since seeing some in a Country Living spread years ago.  Amazingly I nearly passed up on the beautiful knitting bag - I have no idea why, maybe it was the fact that I hadn't yet had a cup of tea...at £2.50 I think it was my favourite buy of the morning.  

I hope you have a fab week!

Tamsyn x
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Saturday, 19 October 2013

Saturday Snapshots




Have a great day everyone!

Tamsyn x

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Friday, 18 October 2013

Vintage Floral Wallpaper




Happy Friday everyone!

As promised, here's the amazing vintage Crown wallpaper that I bought from the flea market at Loose's in Norwich.  I have a small confession to make - I actually only bought one roll originally when I went to the flea market, but I got home, unwrapped it from it's intact packaging, and realised how lovely it was.  So, I flew back in the following weekend to pick up another two rolls.  At £6 a roll, I decided it had to be done!  I will wait for the perfect project to come along, but I'm thinking that in the meantime it makes a lovely photographic backdrop.  I also want to cover an mdf screen with it, or use it as backing in a box frame for my daughter's room.  I could also use it on collages and handmade cards - who knows, I might even paper a wall with it!

On another note, this is my 100th post, hoorah!  Before we know it, it will be the blog's first birthday, and I may have to bake a cake.  Perfect excuse for cake, don't you think? ;)

Tamsyn x

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Sunday, 13 October 2013

A Corner of my Living Room





Hello everyone!

I'm drying my hydrangea's for a little project I have coming up in the next few weeks (all will be revealed soon!).  I liked the way this corner of my living was looking so I thought I'd take some snapshots to show you.  It's a nice mix of calm colours and textures, simple and uncluttered.  The little piece of green Lego on the floor under the sideboard kind of adds to the effect don't you think?!  I spotted it once I'd uploaded the pictures and it made me smile, that stuff gets everywhere!  
The abstract painting in the background is one I have done for The Rustic Rose, and will be going onto our website very soon - we love a statement abstract painting above a big piece of furniture.

I'm attempting some good old fashioned DIY today so it's scruffy jeans and jumper at the ready, and roast dinner later.  I hope you all have a lovely, cosy Sunday whatever you are doing!

Tamsyn x

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Friday, 11 October 2013

Homemade Business cards




Hello everyone!

A few weeks ago I attended the East Anglian Blogger party in Norwich, organised by the very fabulous Gemma at www.retrochick.co.uk.  It took a little courage on my part, as I went knowing that I would not know a soul there, but I thought, 'why not?'.  A mere two days before the big event, I saw the mention of bringing business cards being bounced around on Twitter, which naturally led me to panic slightly - how on earth was I going to get business cards printed in time??  If you have ever seen the film American Psycho, you will understand me on this - I had visions of people pulling beautiful gilt edged cards with elegant scrolled fonts from their pocket to hand out, whilst I stood aside in a cold sweat.  (Obviously I'm exaggerating, but you get my drift!)  

Anyhoo, I then got over my fear, reminded myself that I was never going to be a gilt edged business card kind of gal, and decided to do what I do best - make my own, and embrace the hand made look!  I used small luggage labels from Hobbycraft and cut strips of vintage eiderdown fabric, and printed out one of my favourite vintage photographs to put on the front.  If time had been on my side, I would have liked to have added a little machine stitching on the front, but hey ho.  They will not win prizes for being the slickest business cards, but it matters not - I think they are cute and pretty much sum up the essence of this blog.

On the night itself I had a really lovely time.  I got talking to a really lovely bunch of local bloggers, and  we drank delicious cocktails with great gusto.  Lovely to meet you SophieHazelJenny, and Kim!  I look forward to the next blogger party very much!

Tamsyn x

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Thursday, 10 October 2013

Rock Cakes


Hello everyone!

When I was a little girl, my mum had the loveliest plastic recipe box, with recipe cards for every occasion.  There were many that become firm family favourites, and some that stand out in my memory were the following - Christmas Cake, Pineapple Upside Down Cake and Rock Cakes.  I loved Rock Cakes, I have sepia tinged memories of eating them in the kitchen, always in the winter, with my brother.  And they tasted so good.  So the other day I decided that I had to find a recipe for these retro delights, and bake them for the children.  My son, who is five, is an enthusiastic cake chef, more for the licking of wooden spoons and the finished article rather than the actual process, but he put his apron on and joined in with great gusto.  These are fun to make with kids, as they get to rub the butter into the flour and sugar to make a breadcrumb mixture, then mix milk in to make a dough before spooning it onto a baking tray.  They are a doddle to make.  They are lovely on a rainy Saturday afternoon, with a glass of milk, in front of a movie.  I used this recipe here.  Enjoy!

Tamsyn x

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Monday, 7 October 2013

Covered Notebook-Craft Blog Club Challenge








Hello everyone! 

I adore Twitter.  The support I've had over the last 9 months for the blog has been amazing, and I've 'met' some really lovely, like minded people.  Fellow bloggers from across the board, vintage lovers, crafters, florists to name but a few.  Lots of very inspiring people.
I join in with several weekly evening meet ups, such as #vintagefindhour, #handmadehour and #loveyourblog. I have recently found a fab new group on Twitter, who 'meet up' on a Tuesday evening by using the #craftblogclub hashtag.  Craft blog club is organised by the lovely Emma at Life is Peachy, and at the beginning of September, she set us a challenge to cover a notebook.  Quick and easy enough to not get too bogged down by, but also enough to get really inspired and stuck into.
I went for a vintage style cover with pale pinks and a rosette, as well as button embellishments. I used cream coloured felt as a base, then I pulled out lots of my fabric scraps and machine sewed strips of vintage eiderdown fabric and sewed old buttons on.  I love the finished result, and I'm looking forward to taking part in another challenge soon!

If you are on Twitter, pop over and join us!  My Twitter page is here.

Tamsyn x

Ps - I recently set up a Facebook page for the blog for those who are interested, link at the top of the page! x

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Sunday, 6 October 2013

Sunday Snapshots


Have a relaxing Sunday everyone!

Tamsyn x

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Saturday, 5 October 2013

Car Boot Treasure








Hello everyone!

Just a quick post from me today, but I thought I'd share my latest car boot finds with you all.  
As I've said before, I have a bit of a thing for dinky little vintage chairs.  I can't stop buying them, even though my children consider themselves far too grown up to actually perch their little bottoms upon them.  Anyway, I actually walked past this little blue chair a few times before to deciding to part with £3 - I have no idea why I was undecided, because now I have it, I absolutely love it. The duck egg blue is perfect, and although it's very weathered and worn, I think that adds to it's charm.  And it makes a very cosy spot for giraffe to take a rest.

Next up involved me rummaging through suitcases and suitcases of inky handwritten letter, papers, old school workbooks and other ephemera, from a house clearance lorry.  I adore the beautiful old faded papers and stamps - there are even 1940's bus tickets and laundry bills amongst it all.  A snippet of someone's life.  I came away with a couple of bundles.  I shall use them in collages, mood boards and scrapbooking, maybe even some paper bunting. 

Have a wonderful weekend!

Tamsyn x


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