I treated myself to something new last weekend.
Normally I try and make cushions myself. It’s so easy to do (as long as you’re not a total perfectionist) and a quick way to update a room. Plus it’s much cheaper to buy some fabric and do this yourself. However, this one I couldn’t easily make and I liked it = I justified the purchase.
I found the image really quite striking. In the East Dulwich shop Mrs Robinson where I bought mine they had this lady and another version showing a Geisha. I later found the same cushion I bought plus another alternative on Graham and Green (and a bit more expensive – I felt good about that).
They are made by Danish company Au Maison and they reference the range of Tibetan images as being by Steve McCurry whom I assume is the same Steve McCurry who works as a photojournalist. His site is well worth a look as it has a host of images from his travels, he is also known for his striking and very very famous image generally referred to as Afghan Girl. So there you go, photojournalism in cushion form.
In a total change of tone I have also started trying to sort out the garden. Spring has finally sprung and plants can be planted. Last year there was some success with sweet peas rambling up a grill on the patio. So I am growing some more.
The garden, despite quite a bit of planting, is still pretty barren in places. This year I hope will be a year that really changes that. It’s top of my list.
And finally a bit of exciting news, I found out earlier this week that this blog has been listed by The Telegraph as one of the Top 50 Interior Design Websites. I’m very surprised…but pleased.
I’ve been using up some bits of fabric I have to make cushions. There’s probably a better technique for making these but I have a very basic approach.
Fabric from Ikea – they actually have quite a good selection you can buy by the metre.
I then cut two squares slightly larger than my cushion filler.
Lay them back to back and pin together. Sew around three sides and a bit at each end of the fourth. Turn it back round the other way, push in the filler and then sew up the gap by hand.
Mine was immediately road tested by a willing volunteer.
I made a couple more with some fabric I bought in Peckham a few of years ago. A little on the lurid side perhaps.
I have another one on the go which is much more involved. This will be a decorative embroidered one. So far it’s slow progress, but I can’t claim to have been working hard at it…
I’ve been working, well doodling in sewing form.
I bought some fabric off-cuts and from one of them I felt I had enough to make a cushion. I covered one panel with essentially doodled imagery. There was no real overall plan just a collection of small sections working across the panel from left to right, top to bottom. Then I cut an equivalent panel and sewed them to gether to make a cushion.
Our poor front garden is full of bagged up building debris at the moment. Not great for first impressions and we do find quite a few people scavenging out front for treasures we may have mistakenly thrown away. Including some copper pipes Klaus has been hoarding.
Given the level of work we have to do I think it will be some time before we can give this garden much attention as we kind of need the space for all these important blue sacks.
view from sitting room window
The back garden is however tempting us to get started even though we should really be working on the interior. It’s pretty much a blank canvas and because it’s so long needs a bit of thought in terms of design.
the garden plus a glimpse of scaffolding
We’re going to reduce the size of the current patio. You actually can’t see all of it in this photo there’s another table and chairs out of shot, it looks a bit like a cafe right now.
For his birthday I bought Klaus a croquet set and he’s keen to keep a large section of lawn to play on. We’re also keen to leave some room for a garden studio. I had one in our old house and it was really useful.
garden office when new at our old house
Being slightly separated from the main house meant I didn’t get easily distracted and I didn’t have to tidy up at the end of the day. Perfect.
At the end of the garden we want to let things go slightly wild and we’re also planning on planting some fruiting trees and having room for vegetables.
So here’s the working plan.
Imagine lots of box hedging around the boarders. A mini-Versailles if you will. Really mini.