Monday 31 January 2011

A shoal of fishy dishies

Mr J and P came home t'other day very pleased with himself indeed.  He'd bought, from the charity shop close to his work, a set of 9 (yes, 9!) fish plates for the princely sum of £1.50!!  That's a bargain and a half isn't it? 

Made in the 1960s by Arcoroc of France, a firm which produces glassware for restaurants.

Luckily, we had friends over for the weekend where they could be shown off at every opportunity.  The problem is that we are awash with plates and there is no room for our little fishy dishies in the plate cupboard. So they are cluttering up our work top at the moment together with our jars and trays as well as the regular sort of kitchen paraphernelia.  What is a body to do?

I, too, am feeling v pleased with myself.  I've finally made something from the 1950s piece of material that I blogged about here,  Not one but two cushion covers.  I even added some pompom trimming which has been festering (not literally, I hasten to add) in my sewing stool for over 10 years!

Here they are nestling together on the armchair.

Here's a close-up of one:

And a close-up of the other.  They're subtley different, I'll have you know!

Now folks, there's still time to enter the JUMBLES AND POMPOMS VINTAGE TAT TREASURES GIVEAWAY.  Go on, you know you want to....... Just see my previous post or click on the Giveaway button on the top right of the page and voila! 

Finally, inspired by my reasonably successful attempt at cushion cover making with pompoms, I've joined the fabulous Felt Fairy's monthly make pledge.  Yes, little old me, making things once a month (we'll see how long that will last shall we?).  I'm off now to look at some of the wonderful makes on show.  Byeeeeeee.

Thursday 27 January 2011

Jumbles and Pompoms Vintage Tat - oops I mean - Treasures Giveaway

Whoop!  Whoop!  Yes, folks, I'm whooping and clapping like crazy today.  To celebrate the fact that I have now got a whole 100 followers, I am having a GIVEAWAY.  Yes, it's the Jumbles and Pompoms Vintage Tat Treasures Giveaway

There are THREE sets of prizes up for grabs.

Firstly, this little lot consisting of a vintage apron (50s or 60s), my Jumble Sale game which I bored you about here and a terrible picture of a rather cute Welsh tapestry purse (it's blue, purple and green).  I love Welsh tapestry.

The second set of prizes consists of the fascinating and very useful "Make Do and Mend" book (originally published in 1942 by the Ministry of Information) and the less useful (methinks) Shopping for Vintage:  The Definitive Guide to Vintage Fashion.  The latter has got nice pics though - see below:

The third set of prizes is not vintage in any shape or form but consists of bargains bought at the recent Paperchase sale.  A pretty box containing 6 HB pencils, a cute tea towel with a cat on one end and a dog at t'other and a set of four snack boxes that fit inside each other:

Like so:

I was going to include The Merry Game of Floundering pictured below and which I posted about here but I noticed that four out of the twelve fish are each missing a piece - boo hoo.  I already have a complete set but if anyone is interested in having an incomplete set(!), please let me know below:

 So, to be in with a chance of winning:  you have to be a follower and leave a comment below telling me which set of prizes you'd like to be considered for.  You can be considered for all three sets of prizes or just one or two - it doesn't matter!  Remember if you want to be considered for the incomplete Merry Floundering game just let me know!  Is that clear?  (Let me know if this is confusing!).   Little Miss J and P will pull the winners out of a vintage jar(!) on Sunday 6 Feb.

Finally, thank you all for following me and putting up with my crazed ramblings.  Byeeeeeeeeeeeee.

Thursday 20 January 2011

Jars a go-go

At J and P Towers, we do not hold with kitchens that are "minimalist" in any shape or form.  I mean, take a look at this image of a kitchen which I found on the internet?

It's not natural is it?  Where is anything?  And, more importantly, where is the ridiculous amount of jars that clutter one's worktop?

Take a look at the ridiculous amount of jars currently residing on our worktop.

Here are just some of our Hornsea selection housing useful items such as tea, sugar and rabbit food:

Another Hornsea, currently empty, but still on our work top just waiting for something to store:

A Crown Devon receptacle.  Not entirely convinced that it is a jar, actually, but is very useful for storing one's biscuits and Tunnock tea cakes:

A large Portmeirion jar which also houses biscuits and the like:

A classic T&G blue and white jar - excellent for storing salt:

A modern Habitat jar - for coffee:

A Taunton Vale jar for our fruit tea:

 Close up of the lid:

This lovely jar from the 1960s, made in Sweden by JIE:

A cereal jar which houses the hamster's food:

 A Baretware tin for the guinea pigs' food:

And, although these are not on the worktop, I just had to show you these little jars used for storing herbs and spice.  More Portmeirion, this time the Greek key design:

 More Hornsea:

Well, I think that's enough jars for one day don't you?  Mr J and P wanted me to call this post "Reasons to be Jarful, 1, 2, 3 (4, 5, 6 etc)".  Er, do you get it?  You know, after the Ian Dury song "Reasons to be Cheerful part 2".  I'll just have to break the news to him that I didn't use it as my readers expect a certain standard of post title on this blog.  Aaah bless, he does try.....

Friday 14 January 2011

Of Towels and Owls

Remember in my last post, I told you about how Mr J and P had bought me a 1970s tea towel for a Xmas prezzie and had hidden it so well from me that he couldn't find it??  Well, dear readers, all is well again in the world.  He found it!  Here it is for your delectation:

It's a beauty isn't it?  I think I may like to turn into a cushion cover!  What is it about my desire to turn perfectly decent items into cushion covers (see my previous post on the swimming costume debacle here)!

The "owls" in my very unimaginative post title refers to this kit I bought for Little Miss J and P for Xmas:

Alice Melvin's cut out and sew owl and owlets.  Lookee here, cute huh?

Here is Little Miss J and P sewing up an owlet.  My mum was a great and patient sewer.  I'm a terrible and impatient sewer and I'm rather hoping that my mum's skills and patience has skipped a generation.

Little Miss J and P decided that she wanted to cuddle her owlet rather than have it as a glove puppet, so we stuffed it with small cut-up pieces of an old vest of hers and here's the finished product:

A close up:

Owlet is currently living in Little Miss J and P's pyjama pocket.

Stylish?  Moi?  Well, the lovely and talented Andrea from Fin and Gabs has passed on this "Stylish Blogger Award" to little old me:

How exciting!  I now have to bore you to death tell you 7 things about myself.  I promise not to burble on.

1.  I work in university administration.

2.  I have lived in London all my life, apart from 3 glorious years when I lived in Sheffield (Yorkshire, Northern England for those of you who are overseas).

3.  I studied Geography at University (in Sheffield).

4.  I love music and listen to music virtually all day!  We're lucky to be able to listen to the radio at work, Radio 6 Music is our preferred choice.

5.  My three favourite films ever are:  What Ever Happened to Baby Jane (I adore Bette Davies); Withnail and I (utterly hilarious portrayal of two out of work actors who leave their squalid flat in London for a holiday in the Lake District) and Grey Gardens, either the documentary or the film with Drew Barrymore and Jessica Lange - both are equally fascinating, which is about the eccentric aunt and cousin of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis.

6.  I love food and I spend a great deal of my time thinking about it and browsing through recipe books.  Never been on a diet.

7.  Having said I love looking through recipe books, I almost never bother with baking recipes because I hate baking.  This is a sad and sorry photo indeed.

It is the birthday cake, Little Miss J and P baked for Grandpappy J and P some weeks ago now.  Light, moist and fluffy, it is not.  Rock hard and dry as a biscuit more like.  However, slathered in Nutella and covered with smarties, it was suprisingly edible.

I now have to pass on the award to 15 bloggers.  Well, I'd really like to pass it on to all those bloggers who read my blog.  I'd love to hear 7 things about you all.

Toodle pip. xx

Friday 7 January 2011

Back to Life, Back to Reality......

Happy New Year one and all.

Did you have a lovely Xmas?  Did you get what you wished for?  Does it seem ages ago now?  It does to me.

Some weeks before the big day, Mr J and P had an argument, whereupon I declared that I didn't want anything for Xmas.  Well, Mr J and P virtually took me at my word (grrr).  That'll teach me.  To be fair, he did get me:  a DVD I wanted, a book (by someone I'm not massively keen on), a cd that we'd agreed that I would buy for him as we both wanted it so now we have two, this cool travel card holder:

and a pair of lime green wellies.  He claims to have bought me a vintage drying up cloth but squirrelled it away so well that to this day he's not been able to find it (grrrr).

Anyway, enough of this nonsense.  The highlight of the Xmas break for me was our holiday in Italy.  We stayed in an appartment near Sorrento (near Naples in the south).  It was sunny every day and the temperatures were in double figures.  What more could a body ask for?  Take a look at the view from our window; the island is Capri:

Thought you might like to see the kettle in our appartment.  Yes, I did say "kettle".  Have a look:

I knew you wouldn't be disappointed.  How fab is that?

We saw the outstanding Pompei:

Climbed the still active Vesuvius (last erupted in 1944).  Yes, that's steam coming out of the crater.

Explored the wonderfully bustling and chaotic Naples.  Here it is complete with mounds of rubbish:

If you want to know why Naples has had a rubbish problem for many years click here.

Lines of washing festooning the streets in the centre of Naples:

This is not a brilliant photo, but I was trying to capture the hoards of people who descend on this one street in December where every single shop and stall sells nativity figures for one's crib.  It's a big thing in Naples.

A little known fact.  Outside one of the bars in Naples, is a shrine dedicated to that footballer chappy, Diego Maradona.  The shrine consists of, among other things, a strand of his hair and a tiny casket containing genuine Maradona tears!  I didn't bother taking a photo, particularly as the bar requests that people buy a coffee before taking a photo!  Well, really....

We also visited, what was described in the Lonely Planet guide, as Italy's largest vintage clothing market. Unfortunately, because it is winter, there were masses of fur coats and snow suits in evidence and very little else, oh, apart from ties - oddly.  We even managed to find the only charity shop on the Amalfi Coast (do correct me if I'm wrong), in Amalfi itself, which didn't prove fruitful - full of unpurchaseable tat even by my tat buying standards.

Before I go, I would like to thank the very lovely Andrea from Fin and Gabs whose giveaway I won recently.

Aren't those cards gorgeous?  They've got wooden ornaments too.  And Andrea made them all by herself.  Blimey, there are some seriously talented bloggers out there.

One last thing, I don't normally bother with New Year Resolutions, but this year I resolve to be more organised (I'm terribly scatty and very forgetful) and to learn to play the piano!  I read in The Guardian that if you become proficient in any instrument, "you should improve your dexterity, intellectual capacity and resistance to age-related dementia."  Well, I'm off to tickle the old ivories, dear readers.  Stay tuned!  (Sorry, that was bad.  Very bad.).