Adelle’s Christmas haul

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Adelle's Christmas haul

Justin bought me lovely presents again this year, so I thought I’d sing his praises and share a few pics of my Christmas haul.

Vintage industrial iron letter A

My presents were marked with this huge lovely old letter A – just in case I couldn’t find the large pile of gifts when I awoke on Christmas morning!

Tweed jacket

The first thing I opened was this gorgeous coat in Burren tweed. It’s made by Jack Murphy and has a modern country look. It’s perfect for all kinds of occasion – walking the dog on a sunny, crisp winters morning; browsing the shops in one of our Yorkshire market towns – or a day at the races all spring to mind!

Tweed jacket detail

As Justin knows, the shade of purple in this tweed is just about my favourite colour. He also bought me some cosy, fleecy pyjamas which carried on the theme. The purple ones have a sweet little heart design and the grey ones have festive snowflakes!

Pyjamas detail

Justin usually buys me a piece of jewellery at Christmas. This year he chose something from Element in Hebden Bridge. The stone is polished flint with a silver mount. I love the simple Scandinavian style and the fact that something beautiful has been created from such a humble material.

Polished flint ring from Element in Hebden Bridge

Next came some vintage fashion! Justin spends a lot of his time trawling for vintage loveliness, so I do quite well for handbags and the like. These two pieces date from the 1970s – a lovely pale blue, soft leather handbag and a roomy vanity case in yellow ochre.

Vintage handbag and vanity case

And what about this gorgeous little man! Well, he’s not so little – standing 16 inches tall. The robin’s breast is covered in Wiltshire Berry R Tana Lawn patterned fabric from the Liberty Art Fabrics Collection. I’d mentioned how gorgeous I thought he was when I was sourcing gift ideas for our blog. Then lo & behold – this wonderful splash of colour emerged from a simple brown paper package. He’s making me smile just looking at this photograph!

Large Liberty print robin figure and pair of bird books by Matt Sewell

There were more charming birds in the form of this little books. They’re produced by a favourite illustrator of ours, Matt Sewell. They’re entitled Our Garden Birds and Our Woodland Birds, so they’ll cover many of the birds I’ll see on our walks.

Pair of bird books by Matt Sewell

And Christmas just isn’t Christmas without a chocolatey treat! He bought me some luxury chocolate spread – perfect for the morning croissants.

Tin of fine chocolate spread

I think this girl done good!

Lamplighter Festival 2014

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owl lantern in the Lamplighter Festival in Todmorden

The Lamplighter Festival brightened up our evening dog walk here in Todmorden on Saturday.

Lanterns canalside at Todmorden's Lamplighter Festival 2014

 We took a camera along and hope our snaps capture the atmosphere.

Fish lantern at Todmorden's Lamplighter Festival 2014

Todmorden sits in in a steep-sided valley so you could stand above the town and watch the parade as it meandered through the streets which was very pretty.

Globe lantern at the Todmorden Lamplighter Festival 2014

We then moved in for a closer look at the creations and their operators, listen to the drummers and view the more stationary installations.

Lanterns in the shape of houses and Stoodley Pike at Todmorden's Lamplighter Festival

The festival seems to combine quite an ancient tradition with a futuristic feel too – a bit Blade Runner!

Jellyfish lanterns at the Todmorden Lamplighter Festival 2014

It’s only the festival’s second year, but we think it’s got real potential for a long term future. It’s perfect for a dark winter evening and seems to suit the winding streets and old stone buildings of Todmorden.

Fire performer at Todmorden's Lamplighter Festival 2014

Both kids & adults were having fun. In addition to the parade, there were various food stalls and the local bars were doing a roaring trade.

Moon and star lanterns at Todmorden Lamplighter Festival 2014

Let’s hope it goes from strength to strength!

Gimme Five! Tour de Yorkshire souvenirs

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Gimme Five! Tour de Yorkshire souvenirs

The Tour de Yorkshire is pedalling its way through the county this weekend. There’s a fantastic atmosphere in the Calder Valley. Lots of the shops have made a big effort with their cycling-themed window displays; houses along the route sport bright yellow bicycles in their windows and the schools have gone to town with banners and cycling figures attached to railings.

We drove up Cragg Vale (the longest, continuous gradient in the country) this week to reckie a good vantage point for Sunday. There are multiple colourful strings of bunting right the way to the top – apparently it’s a world record attempt – over 10 kilometre’s worth!

The Tour’s visit to this area will be a once in a lifetime occurrence – here’s a little cross-section of commemorative and celebratory things produced in recognition.

  1. Bang Tidy Clothing women’s Yorkshire Cyclisme 2014 T shirt: £10.97, Amazon
  2. Tour de Yorkshire, day two – signed, mounted limited-edition print: £120, Michelle Campbell Art
  3. Handmade Tour de France Yorkshire bunting: £15, Etsy
  4. Velo-City – 12-bottle case: £32.50, York Brewery
  5. Cragg Vale cyclists print – inspired by Tour de Yorkshire: £45, Folksy

Home is in the North 2014

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Natalie Laura Ellen bee illustrated paper and mug

We spent a very enjoyable few hours at the Home is in the North event on Saturday.

exterior view of Halle St Peter's

It was held at Hallé St Peter’s in Ancoats, Manchester – another great choice of venue by The Social Butterfly‘s Rachel Adams, the show’s organiser.

Ancoats billboard

Ancoats is an interesting part of Manchester – the steady process of regeneration is ongoing. There are some wonderful buildings – unspoilt, Victorian gems – brick terraces, old pubs, churches and former industrial sites.

view of the ceiling of Halle St Peter's

Hallé St Peter’s is one such building with it’s magnificent sense of space & light.

interior view of Halle St Peter's showing Heather Linnett's upholstered items in the foreground

It really came to life with all the amazing homewares on display – and exhibitors were the perfect mix of familiar faces and new talent.

coffee sack upholstered seat of one of Heather Linnett's chairs

Heather Linnitt aka Eclectic Chair is someone whose work we highlighted at last year’s Independent Interiors Show. We love her soft furnishings & upholstery work – using coffee sacks, vintage and retro fabrics. The Stig Lindberg-style fabric chair was a stunner – and we’d happily give house room to the Papua New Guinea coffee sack sofa too!

Heather Linnett's armchair upholstered in retro Sanderson fabric

We also saw the mosaic art of Amanda McCrann at that same event last year. Her stall was very eye-catching once more. The artwork is available in the form of original pieces or alternatively, prints & stationery incorporating her distinctive designs.

Amanda McCrann's 'Kiss' mosaic

Annabel Perrin was also there this weekend.

Annabel Perrin's patterned tea towels

Her fabric designs are a real joy – full of life, colour & vintage charm.

Annabel Perrin's patterned fabric

Anthony Hughes‘ work was new to us. We had a nice chat with him about the influence of industrial architecture & detailing on his work – finding beauty in the mundane & neglected… and our shared love of a good pylon!

Anthony Hughes' pylon fabric cushion

His range of stationery, wallpaper & fabric uses the photographs & artwork he produces at his Leeds base.

selection of Anthony Hughes' fabric cushions and wallpaper

The cotton fabric is made in Edinburgh & cushions feather-filled – temptation was rising!

Anthony Hughes' ductile print cushion

Blooming Balconies was a very friendly & approachable team – and their display provided a real blast of colour in the hall.

Blooming Balconies' banner

They design a range of containers & tubs, some with clever fittings for railings & drainpipes. Their stall looked perfect next to a sunny window.

Blooming Balconies' stall

There was no lack of colour on Charlotte Nash‘s display either.

Charlotte Nash's colourful light flex with Plumen bulb

Her work incorporates braiding, crochet, paper-cut & collage. She had some very striking mirrors, artwork & lighting on view. She’s fresh out of university, so we hope her future is as bright as her creations!

part of Charlotte Nash's display

Grey Moose Designs only had a small display, but their vintage industrial lights grabbed your attention from all over the large church space.

Grey Moose's industrial lamp display

Skill, imagination & high quality craftsmanship were clear to see on Richard’s recycled & re-purposed lighting.

Grey Moose's industrial lamp display

He could no doubt do a great job on the vintage spotlight we picked up recently.

detail from Grey Moose's Bullfinch industrial lamp

One of our favourite exhibitors on the day was Kate Bufton.

Kate Bufton's Harry Potter book transformation under a glass dome

She manipulates the shape & form of old books to produce her artwork – framed pictures and these stunning glass domes.

Kate Bufton's framed butterfly book transformation

Katherine Lees also had a very photogenic display. Her exquisite, hand-decorated ceramics in the form of old bottles & keys to form vessels & jewellery were getting lots of attention.

Katherine Lees' ceramic display

It was very hard to walk away from the orange & grey quilt produced by Lisa Watson and pictured below. She incorporates traditional Harris Tweed & sumptuous velvet fabrics into her creations. Gorgeous!

Lisa Watson's handmade velvet and Harris Tweed heirloom quilts

We were very taken by Natalie Laura Ellen‘s stall.

Natalie Laura Ellen's bee illustrated wares

Her gorgeous range of stationery, fabric & ceramics was superbly displayed using vintage crates, drawers & step ladders.

Natalie Laura Ellen's buttons

Lovely attention to detail with handmade labels & signage too.

Natalie Laura Ellen's cards

The Northern Letters display always grabs your attention.

Northern Letters' price list

This time it was the bold, monochrome, graphic quality of pieces that made the display stand out.

Northern Letters' display

We loved this table produced by Oh, Bother. It’s made from recycled wooden palettes. They had all kinds of interesting, quirky pieces to buy.

Oh Bother's display

Rachel Britch is another recent graduate – her lighting surprised us when we touched it. We thought it was soft & fluffy from a distance, but it actually had a stiff, bristly feel.

Rachel Britch's lamp display

Rachel Johns is a near-neighbour from the Calder Valley – Hebden Bridge to be precise. She uses ink & thread – producing much of her artwork with a big stick. Yes, that’s a big stick. It’s very distinctive – whimsical & playful.

Rachel Johns' artwork display

There were practical workshops taking place throughout the day…

sewing workshop at Home is in the North event in Ancoats, Manchester

…with sewing machines whirring and paintbrushes twitching.

Swoon Worthy painting workshop at Home is in the North event in Ancoats, Manchester

We’ll end with the What I Always Wanted display.

Mr Right and appliqué dog cushions

They had the perfect cushions for Justin & Fudge. In addition to their ready to buy products, handmade fabric items can be custom made to capture favourite buildings, street scenes, people or pets.

detail from What I Always Wanted's display

This has been quite a lengthy post and we’ve only mentioned about half the exhibitors! Keep an eye out for the next event – whether you’re a potential exhibitor or customer. Hopefully we’ve given a flavour of this well run & well attended show. We have a camper van fund that we’re trying really hard to build up, otherwise we would have left Home is in the North with a car packed with goodies. Tripod light, eight cushions, large quilt, table, glass dome, some tea towels, two pictures, box of stationery, set of mugs, three flower tubs – and a sofa!

Allotment Diary: A new adventure!

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our new, overgrown allotment

As of this week, we have a new allotment – and a new adventure!

our new, overgrown allotment with other allotments beyond

There’s plenty of work ahead. The perimeter fencing is in a bad state and the plot is a bit overgrown in places. It’s full of potential though, with plenty of space and good-quality soil. And we’ll be inheriting some well-established shrubs & fruit bushes.

our new, overgrown allotment with its broken fence

We’re full of ideas – what we want to grow and how we’d like it to look (we love that allotment chic!!). It’s already got a nice feel to it – quite enclosed with an almost secret garden quality. We hope to develop this a bit further – natural, pretty, and yet productive – that sums it up really.

our new, overgrown allotment with tumble-down lean to and plastic garden chair

In this series of posts, we’ll share the journey – the new projects, successes, failures, the produce grown and what we do with it. Along with a spade, we’ll always be sure to pack our camera! Feel free to share your own comments, ideas & tips as we travel along the allotment road.