Monday 31 December 2012


I can't believe how quickly Christmas has rushed by this year. It has been fabulous having all the family together and to have time to enjoy each other's company. We put the tree up early for once and decorated it in the usual white, silver and crystal. I've always preferred this colour way as it reminds me of my childhood in Sweden. We've added splashes of red and lots of other mad decorations over the years, especially when the children were younger, but always seem to come back to this colour combination.  

I asked our daughter if she was happy decorating the tree with such neutral colours while we were doing the tree this year, and luckily she said she loves it as it is. It will be interesting to see if she keeps the tradition going when she has her own home...

Our Nordic colour themed tree, complete with felted Toby, ceramic, vintage crystal and silver decs,
plus clip-on candle holders


Spotted these inspiring handmade Christmas decorations in the window of a pub in Bermondsey Street, on a recent trip to London. The decs instantly combine the trend for handmade and vintage objects, while also reflecting the pub's hip, yet traditional atmosphere. A great project using heirloom pieces of lace and embroidery, your own sewing masterpieces or Charity Shop finds. I love the simple hand-painted and plain wooden frames and the way the light shines through the sheer fabrics. I'll definitely be making some of these for next Christmas.

A unique and simple festive display at The Garrison Public House in Bermondsey Street, London, that boasts
its own cinema room for relaxed Sunday viewing 

Sunday 9 December 2012


Did my final vintage fair for 2012 yesterday and it was a really good day with a great turn-out. I've taken a stall at the Wanstead Vintage Fashion & Brocante Fair in East London several times over the years and it's always beautifully organised with a great mix of stallholders. Cary Whitley of LoveVintage, who runs the event four times a year, takes a lot of care ensuring that the fair offers a wide range of true vintage fashion, homeware and ephemera. Held in a traditional church hall, the fair is a great destination for anyone looking for vintage haberdashery, small pieces of furniture, menswear, unique frocks and collectable jewellery. There's also a cafe serving hot drinks, delicious home-made cakes and sandwiches on pretty mismatched bone china. 

Some images from my stall, including shots of 1970's BIBA loose face powder and a 1950's musical jewellery box

Cary pulled-out all the stops yesterday, ensuring that the fair had a steady stream of vintage lovers queuing to get in, including a lot of men looking for vintage menswear and Christmas gifts. 

Friday 7 December 2012


There's a fabulous new show in London called Hartnell to Amies: Couture by Royal Appointment, that's perfect for anyone interested in fashion and photography, plus royal- and social history. Hardy Amies and Norman Hartnell, the two stalwarts of British Couture in the 50's and 60's, are currently being celebrated in a unique exhibition at the Fashion & Textile Museum. The show highlights the advent of British couture in the post-war years and in particular Amie's and Hartnell's influence in creating a highly elegant silhouette that attracted the royal patronage of the Queen and was instantly copied by forward thinking department stores and nimble fingered seamstresses. 

Another important element of the exhibition is the photography. The late Norman Parkinson's timeless images effortlessly depict this glamorous era and compliment the sumptuous couture pieces on show.

Norman Hartnell and models, British Vogue 1953
© Norman Parkinson Limited/Courtesy Norman Parkinson Archive

Thursday 6 December 2012


Here are some images of one of my favourite shops in Oxford - Objects of Use. The shop offers a brilliant mix of predominately homespun and European functional household items, including several design classics from Scandinavia which I adore, such as the iconic String bookcase and tactile glassware from iittala. It reminds me of the fabulous Shaker shops that were around in the UK in the 80's.

Everyday household tools and functional items available at Objects of Use in Oxford

Also in-store at the moment are pop-up paper snowball decorations and sheets of those vintage-looking aluminium clip-on candle holders for Christmas trees. The aluminium clips instantly transported me to when I was a child growing up in Kent and my very Swedish parents would always decorated the Christmas tree with live candles held in place with similar clip-on candle holders...I can still smell the heady mix of pine needles and burning candles and hear the endless warnings not to touch the tree!