Friday, 24 July 2009

vintage brit....

Over recent weeks I have seen lots of 'vintage' British things appearing on the high street. From fashion to home styles the union jack flag is predominant. For many years the displaying of the Union Jack or has been tainted with either Football symbolism or a particular political party.
I would like to say its great seeing it in the home form,there seems to be a real feel of nostalgia about it. This wave of nostalgia has led me to put together my first layout in 5 months!.

Whilst clearing out gramps house I found this picture which is a street party in the road that I was born in. I think it is to celebrate the end of the war in 1945. In the photo I can see my gramps, my nan, and my great-grandad. I have handmade the flowers and bunting, adding the vintage feel by sanding & scrunching and then embellishing with buttons & pins.

Work has influenced this vintage brit nostalgia. A pop up shop opened this week called cenTEAnary, to coincide with the celebration of the stores 100th birthday, it features vintage pieces as well as new designs. Also opening this week was the fantastic Pedlars, I really like these signs & trunk. It also has instore a large vintage ribbon stand!..... too much temptation. This store is alongside Cath Kidston.

I am LYving these home goodies, tapestry cushion from the Rug Company and the china from Emma Bridgewater ( spoiler alert... union jack christmas crackers coming!)





Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Cakes & Lakes

I'm back from the Lakes with a bag full of cakes!.... and a lovely weekend was had by all. Two set off an hour later than planned!... (I had scheduled for this as I have only known my friend to be on time once in the 38 years of knowing her and that was the day that she got married!) and did battle with the M25, M1 & M6, fortunately the roads were good (especially the M6 toll road - at £4.50 a car each way I don't expect that it suffers many traffic jams!) and we arrived in the breathtaking surroundings of the lake district early afternoon. We stayed in the village of Staveley at a fantastic pub here, highly recommended, rooms 'bijou' but very clean. Food & Ale also comes with high recommendation! After dumping bags we walked down to the Mill Yard to check out the location of the Cooking School. The Cookery school, bakery, Organic wine cafe & pub all are housed in an old brewery yard which backs onto a beautiful river with its own 'fish' run.

Happy that we weren't going to get lost the next day we headed back jumped in the car and headed down the road to Windermere. The first thing that you see on turning into the village is a huge sign for Lakeland, (the penny dropped then, that obviously Lakeland was born from the Lake district!).. a trolley of goodies later! these tins, fab cool bag and this cake tin were just a flavour of purchases! (only cake tin was mine!)..we drove through the 'town' and headed down towards the lake, although it was overcast it didn't distract from the view.
Day 2 dawned bright & warm after breakfast we drove down to Cook school ready for a fun filled day. We started with coffee on the decked terrace overlooking the river, i was quite happy just to sit there. We were then taken upstairs where we were met by Dale our chef for the day, who presented us with our aprons. In total there was 4 of us for the day so we got some real 1:1 teaching which was great. Our bakes for the day were; Cumberland Dream Cake, Orange & Cardamom Cake, Sticky Gingerbread and Chocolate Fudge Cake. It was a great day and I learnt lots. In between lots of baking were were cooked lunch by our chef which was amazing.
We had a really great day, the whole ambiance of the school is lovely, highly recommended for all.
Evening spent sitting in the beer garden next to the river watching the sheep graze on the bank!

Day 3 dawned bright but with rain clouds looming in the distance, a hearty breakfast had by both (in preparation of long drive ahead!) check out and a drive into Ambleside for a couple of hours before departing home. Ambleside was incredibly quaint with spectacular views of the lake. We bimbled about, fell in love with an old fashion penny sweet & chocolate cafe... mmm yummy before heading back to the car to embark on the journey home. Before jumping on the motorway we popped back into the cookery school to collect all our bakes, as they had kindly stored it for us in fridge overnight.

We left the lakes lunchtime and arrived home early evening.

I had a really lovely weekend and it certainly won't be the last time that I visit the Lake District. I have been to many parts of the UK, this was my first time in the lakes and I LYved it!

here are my Bakes & Cakes from the Lakes!

Friday, 17 July 2009

Two go Bake in the Lakes!

This week has been an up & down week for me.... work has been busy and I feel like I've not achieved anything!... fortunately I am going away this weekend with my very dear friend Karen. We are off to the Lake District for a couple of days. One of the days will be spent at Baking School!... here
This school was featured in a newspaper when I was comatose on my friends sofa the week after loosing gramps... my friend has since booked for us to go for the day which has now turned into a 4 day road trip!... unfortunately it falls on the 1st weekend of the UK school holidays!...so i am sure we will see lots of the M25, M1 & M6!

Last night we had an amazing storm, I missed most of it as i was at the cinema watching Harry. This I always thought would be the hardest book to turn into a film as it really is the prequel to the last book, and is very dark and obviously had the huge surprise at the end. They have done a good job of exploring the emotions of teens in this and that angst of first lYve and the end was as emotional as the book.
Have a lovely weekend... I'm off baking!... Tx

Sunday, 12 July 2009

sweet sunday

This week over on Stamps & Smiles see's a sketch challenge here. This inspired me to get the cute sweetie stamp out from Stampinbella. I've kept the colour scheme quite simple, but I think quite effective. I'm getting back into crafting, although I still haven't managed to scrapbook anything yet. I'm sure it will come back eventually. This week has very much been up & down for me but I suppose I should expect that.
My tube read this week has been the fantastic Changing Grooms. An absolute romp of a debut novel by Sasha Wagstaff. If you like Fiona Walker /Veronica Henry then you will love this.... a fab holiday read.
hope everyone has had a good weekend. I caught up with some friends today that I haven't seen for a while, it was lovely to see everyone and I'm slowly integrating myself back out into the social world!...hugs Tx

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

cupcake school...........

Last night I ventured out to North London to the very crafty "The Make Lounge" to attend Cupcake school!...... I found this class on the great I Y Cupcakes blog sometime ago and was talking about it at work. Later that week my team left a goody bag on my desk with a voucher in it for the class.

The Make Lounge is between Highbury & Islington and Angel station. The biggest challenge was getting there during the worst storm ever in London which went on forever, Oxford Street at 5.30 resembled a river!with huge disruption to the tube network due to flooding.

The class that was run by Michelle from The Lavender bakery was fab and I quite happily whiled away a couple of hours icing & decorating cupcakes. Even an "experienced" cupcaker like me learnt lots! and the lounge had lots of yummy things to look at. Highly recommended for a fun & girly night out.
An added bonus to the night was that I sat opposite Anne who writes the I Y cupcakes blog who was lovely.
From this:~
So my cupcakes started 'naked' which I then iced with buttercream. The next lesson was making the piping bags!... picture a scene reminiscent to the generation game!... fortunately I have mastered this art over the years. Royal icing was then coloured to our required colours and we were let loose on the cupcakes!
To This:~
YYYYYYYYYY
Here are some pics from the make Lounge...check out all these scrummy fabribs... Amy Butler to dribble over!
and then cottons and books to devour...............check out the website for some great courses and craft events.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Cupcake Finds....

Yesterday I nipped to the local market to pick up some supplies, whilst bimbling about I popped into TKMaxx, and stumbled upon these cute tins...each tin contains a cook book to compliment the tin and a little extra.The 'home baking' tin contains pale blue measuring spoons, 'brownie' contains a spatula and the 'cupcake' tin holds 100 "cupcake" decorated cupcake cases... I Y that the tins have embossed descriptions on the top & sides. I'm soo liking these!
I also picked up the little glass cake stand for 50p from the charity shop. So this morning I threw together some lemon muffins to try it out!... mmm very yummy

Saturday, 4 July 2009

The Lady is back....

Today is American Independence Day...... for all my American blog friends, have a fab day! I've themed my card for this weeks challenge over at Stamps & Smiles ~ The Fresh Batch accordingly! ....

Today also sees the opening of the Statue of Liberty's crown.. so welcome back Lady Liberty.
I have been very fortunate to view New York from this platform prior to 9/11 and the views are stunning & spectacular. New York is without a doubt my favorite city and I am sure the celebrations there today will be great....hope everyone has a fun filled weekend. YYYYY





Thursday, 2 July 2009

Last Night I ran away to the Circus!.............

and it truly was the greatest show on earth!.... I joined 80,000 people at
the fantabulous Wembley Stadium to watch Take That.
I really wasn't sure what to expect and was a bit un-phased about going, but the Boy's pulled out all the stops and put on a spectacular event unlike any other concert that I or Wembley have ever seen.
The magic started when clowns appeared in the middle of the audience blowing bubbles and riding on a cart covered with balloons to a circular stage. As more mime artists appeared along with more balloons, the atmosphere became even more electric as Gary, Mark, Howard, & Jason appeared from amongst the balloons,Wembley went wild.... launching into Greatest Day... a fitting start to an amazing show.
Opening set then lead into Hello, Could it Be Magic (where Gary slotted into Robbie's shoes very well!)...this then went into Pray where the boys showed they hadn't lost there sexy dance moves. A Million Love Songs followed with breathtaking saxophone accompaniment, next up the final song in the segment Back for Good. As they stood centre stage, shoots of water suddenly appeared encapsulating them in a fountain. It looked stunning.The best was yet to come as they adorned circus ring master style jackets, up through the stage appeared a huge elephant which the boys rode to the main stage heavily disguised as a 'big top'.
Second set started off with The Garden,Shine and Up All Night, accompanied by a cast of 50 circus performers & dancers flying on trapezes, & human
ferris wheels, leading into Wooden Boat & How Did it Come to This. At this point the boys left Gary who took to the Piano and sang a medley of Love ain't Here / Babe straight into The Circus whilst a tight rope walker performed over the crowd. Howard then sang What is Love which was haunting and breathtaking....where as they sang the boys went from ringmasters to clowns (including face painting) A change of tempo enthused which could only mean one thing,.... Do What You Like/It Only Takes a Minute/ Take That & Party... with the boys riding unicycles and Gary on a child's bike & stabilisers. More acrobats followed as the boys sung Said It All.........which launched into Never Forget accompanied by a tap dancing soldier and a marching toy band ( you needed to see it to believe it!)... audience participation reminiscent to Queen at the Live Aid gig, complete with hands raised in the air.(some of you may be too young to know what I'm talking about!) Patience followed which lead into a spectacular finale of Relight My Fire, complete with original diva Loleatta Holloway, giant inflatable ringmaster (with creepy holographic face) fire lit hula hoopers, and giant fire flames lighting the night sky.
The boys then came back to an Encore of Hold Up A Light... accompanied by the cast of dancers & performers including the elephant.......and just when you think it's all over .... Rule the World complete with firework finish over the top of Wembley Stadium.
This show was a shear masterpiece of theatrics, special effects, and amazing vocals from the boys, all credit to the performers and crew of 238.
If it wasn't already SOLD OUT...I would be going back for more...........




Friday, 24 July 2009

vintage brit....

Over recent weeks I have seen lots of 'vintage' British things appearing on the high street. From fashion to home styles the union jack flag is predominant. For many years the displaying of the Union Jack or has been tainted with either Football symbolism or a particular political party.
I would like to say its great seeing it in the home form,there seems to be a real feel of nostalgia about it. This wave of nostalgia has led me to put together my first layout in 5 months!.

Whilst clearing out gramps house I found this picture which is a street party in the road that I was born in. I think it is to celebrate the end of the war in 1945. In the photo I can see my gramps, my nan, and my great-grandad. I have handmade the flowers and bunting, adding the vintage feel by sanding & scrunching and then embellishing with buttons & pins.

Work has influenced this vintage brit nostalgia. A pop up shop opened this week called cenTEAnary, to coincide with the celebration of the stores 100th birthday, it features vintage pieces as well as new designs. Also opening this week was the fantastic Pedlars, I really like these signs & trunk. It also has instore a large vintage ribbon stand!..... too much temptation. This store is alongside Cath Kidston.

I am LYving these home goodies, tapestry cushion from the Rug Company and the china from Emma Bridgewater ( spoiler alert... union jack christmas crackers coming!)





Tuesday, 21 July 2009

Cakes & Lakes

I'm back from the Lakes with a bag full of cakes!.... and a lovely weekend was had by all. Two set off an hour later than planned!... (I had scheduled for this as I have only known my friend to be on time once in the 38 years of knowing her and that was the day that she got married!) and did battle with the M25, M1 & M6, fortunately the roads were good (especially the M6 toll road - at £4.50 a car each way I don't expect that it suffers many traffic jams!) and we arrived in the breathtaking surroundings of the lake district early afternoon. We stayed in the village of Staveley at a fantastic pub here, highly recommended, rooms 'bijou' but very clean. Food & Ale also comes with high recommendation! After dumping bags we walked down to the Mill Yard to check out the location of the Cooking School. The Cookery school, bakery, Organic wine cafe & pub all are housed in an old brewery yard which backs onto a beautiful river with its own 'fish' run.

Happy that we weren't going to get lost the next day we headed back jumped in the car and headed down the road to Windermere. The first thing that you see on turning into the village is a huge sign for Lakeland, (the penny dropped then, that obviously Lakeland was born from the Lake district!).. a trolley of goodies later! these tins, fab cool bag and this cake tin were just a flavour of purchases! (only cake tin was mine!)..we drove through the 'town' and headed down towards the lake, although it was overcast it didn't distract from the view.
Day 2 dawned bright & warm after breakfast we drove down to Cook school ready for a fun filled day. We started with coffee on the decked terrace overlooking the river, i was quite happy just to sit there. We were then taken upstairs where we were met by Dale our chef for the day, who presented us with our aprons. In total there was 4 of us for the day so we got some real 1:1 teaching which was great. Our bakes for the day were; Cumberland Dream Cake, Orange & Cardamom Cake, Sticky Gingerbread and Chocolate Fudge Cake. It was a great day and I learnt lots. In between lots of baking were were cooked lunch by our chef which was amazing.
We had a really great day, the whole ambiance of the school is lovely, highly recommended for all.
Evening spent sitting in the beer garden next to the river watching the sheep graze on the bank!

Day 3 dawned bright but with rain clouds looming in the distance, a hearty breakfast had by both (in preparation of long drive ahead!) check out and a drive into Ambleside for a couple of hours before departing home. Ambleside was incredibly quaint with spectacular views of the lake. We bimbled about, fell in love with an old fashion penny sweet & chocolate cafe... mmm yummy before heading back to the car to embark on the journey home. Before jumping on the motorway we popped back into the cookery school to collect all our bakes, as they had kindly stored it for us in fridge overnight.

We left the lakes lunchtime and arrived home early evening.

I had a really lovely weekend and it certainly won't be the last time that I visit the Lake District. I have been to many parts of the UK, this was my first time in the lakes and I LYved it!

here are my Bakes & Cakes from the Lakes!

Friday, 17 July 2009

Two go Bake in the Lakes!

This week has been an up & down week for me.... work has been busy and I feel like I've not achieved anything!... fortunately I am going away this weekend with my very dear friend Karen. We are off to the Lake District for a couple of days. One of the days will be spent at Baking School!... here
This school was featured in a newspaper when I was comatose on my friends sofa the week after loosing gramps... my friend has since booked for us to go for the day which has now turned into a 4 day road trip!... unfortunately it falls on the 1st weekend of the UK school holidays!...so i am sure we will see lots of the M25, M1 & M6!

Last night we had an amazing storm, I missed most of it as i was at the cinema watching Harry. This I always thought would be the hardest book to turn into a film as it really is the prequel to the last book, and is very dark and obviously had the huge surprise at the end. They have done a good job of exploring the emotions of teens in this and that angst of first lYve and the end was as emotional as the book.
Have a lovely weekend... I'm off baking!... Tx

Sunday, 12 July 2009

sweet sunday

This week over on Stamps & Smiles see's a sketch challenge here. This inspired me to get the cute sweetie stamp out from Stampinbella. I've kept the colour scheme quite simple, but I think quite effective. I'm getting back into crafting, although I still haven't managed to scrapbook anything yet. I'm sure it will come back eventually. This week has very much been up & down for me but I suppose I should expect that.
My tube read this week has been the fantastic Changing Grooms. An absolute romp of a debut novel by Sasha Wagstaff. If you like Fiona Walker /Veronica Henry then you will love this.... a fab holiday read.
hope everyone has had a good weekend. I caught up with some friends today that I haven't seen for a while, it was lovely to see everyone and I'm slowly integrating myself back out into the social world!...hugs Tx

Wednesday, 8 July 2009

cupcake school...........

Last night I ventured out to North London to the very crafty "The Make Lounge" to attend Cupcake school!...... I found this class on the great I Y Cupcakes blog sometime ago and was talking about it at work. Later that week my team left a goody bag on my desk with a voucher in it for the class.

The Make Lounge is between Highbury & Islington and Angel station. The biggest challenge was getting there during the worst storm ever in London which went on forever, Oxford Street at 5.30 resembled a river!with huge disruption to the tube network due to flooding.

The class that was run by Michelle from The Lavender bakery was fab and I quite happily whiled away a couple of hours icing & decorating cupcakes. Even an "experienced" cupcaker like me learnt lots! and the lounge had lots of yummy things to look at. Highly recommended for a fun & girly night out.
An added bonus to the night was that I sat opposite Anne who writes the I Y cupcakes blog who was lovely.
From this:~
So my cupcakes started 'naked' which I then iced with buttercream. The next lesson was making the piping bags!... picture a scene reminiscent to the generation game!... fortunately I have mastered this art over the years. Royal icing was then coloured to our required colours and we were let loose on the cupcakes!
To This:~
YYYYYYYYYY
Here are some pics from the make Lounge...check out all these scrummy fabribs... Amy Butler to dribble over!
and then cottons and books to devour...............check out the website for some great courses and craft events.

Sunday, 5 July 2009

Cupcake Finds....

Yesterday I nipped to the local market to pick up some supplies, whilst bimbling about I popped into TKMaxx, and stumbled upon these cute tins...each tin contains a cook book to compliment the tin and a little extra.The 'home baking' tin contains pale blue measuring spoons, 'brownie' contains a spatula and the 'cupcake' tin holds 100 "cupcake" decorated cupcake cases... I Y that the tins have embossed descriptions on the top & sides. I'm soo liking these!
I also picked up the little glass cake stand for 50p from the charity shop. So this morning I threw together some lemon muffins to try it out!... mmm very yummy

Saturday, 4 July 2009

The Lady is back....

Today is American Independence Day...... for all my American blog friends, have a fab day! I've themed my card for this weeks challenge over at Stamps & Smiles ~ The Fresh Batch accordingly! ....

Today also sees the opening of the Statue of Liberty's crown.. so welcome back Lady Liberty.
I have been very fortunate to view New York from this platform prior to 9/11 and the views are stunning & spectacular. New York is without a doubt my favorite city and I am sure the celebrations there today will be great....hope everyone has a fun filled weekend. YYYYY





Thursday, 2 July 2009

Last Night I ran away to the Circus!.............

and it truly was the greatest show on earth!.... I joined 80,000 people at
the fantabulous Wembley Stadium to watch Take That.
I really wasn't sure what to expect and was a bit un-phased about going, but the Boy's pulled out all the stops and put on a spectacular event unlike any other concert that I or Wembley have ever seen.
The magic started when clowns appeared in the middle of the audience blowing bubbles and riding on a cart covered with balloons to a circular stage. As more mime artists appeared along with more balloons, the atmosphere became even more electric as Gary, Mark, Howard, & Jason appeared from amongst the balloons,Wembley went wild.... launching into Greatest Day... a fitting start to an amazing show.
Opening set then lead into Hello, Could it Be Magic (where Gary slotted into Robbie's shoes very well!)...this then went into Pray where the boys showed they hadn't lost there sexy dance moves. A Million Love Songs followed with breathtaking saxophone accompaniment, next up the final song in the segment Back for Good. As they stood centre stage, shoots of water suddenly appeared encapsulating them in a fountain. It looked stunning.The best was yet to come as they adorned circus ring master style jackets, up through the stage appeared a huge elephant which the boys rode to the main stage heavily disguised as a 'big top'.
Second set started off with The Garden,Shine and Up All Night, accompanied by a cast of 50 circus performers & dancers flying on trapezes, & human
ferris wheels, leading into Wooden Boat & How Did it Come to This. At this point the boys left Gary who took to the Piano and sang a medley of Love ain't Here / Babe straight into The Circus whilst a tight rope walker performed over the crowd. Howard then sang What is Love which was haunting and breathtaking....where as they sang the boys went from ringmasters to clowns (including face painting) A change of tempo enthused which could only mean one thing,.... Do What You Like/It Only Takes a Minute/ Take That & Party... with the boys riding unicycles and Gary on a child's bike & stabilisers. More acrobats followed as the boys sung Said It All.........which launched into Never Forget accompanied by a tap dancing soldier and a marching toy band ( you needed to see it to believe it!)... audience participation reminiscent to Queen at the Live Aid gig, complete with hands raised in the air.(some of you may be too young to know what I'm talking about!) Patience followed which lead into a spectacular finale of Relight My Fire, complete with original diva Loleatta Holloway, giant inflatable ringmaster (with creepy holographic face) fire lit hula hoopers, and giant fire flames lighting the night sky.
The boys then came back to an Encore of Hold Up A Light... accompanied by the cast of dancers & performers including the elephant.......and just when you think it's all over .... Rule the World complete with firework finish over the top of Wembley Stadium.
This show was a shear masterpiece of theatrics, special effects, and amazing vocals from the boys, all credit to the performers and crew of 238.
If it wasn't already SOLD OUT...I would be going back for more...........