Friday, 2 July 2010

Friday At Last

I really can't blame Vorey Puss for feeling a bit hot and bothered. It's been a busy week (well it has for me, not sure about the cat!)

This morning, having woken up horribly early at 5.30am, I'm treating myself to a "power smoothie" to try to give me some energy. Hmm...

It's basically the very ripe contents of the fruit bowl with some oats and milk thrown in, whizzed in a blender. Yummy actually. As for the power, well we'll see!

Thanks to all those of you who took the time to comment on my last post all about our fabulous weekend on the Severn Valley Railway. The railway runs this 1940's themed weekend twice a year and the good news is that if you fancy it, the second weekend starts tomorrow so don your best frock, dust off your hat and head on down to one of the stunning stations along the line. We stayed in Bewdley which is a charming little town. It's looking rather lovely here in the evening sunlight as we strolled along the river after a very big and fab dinner (at The Little Packhorse).

As I say, it's a very picturesque spot, we have never had the chance to look at Bewdley much itself as our jolly on the railway inevitably takes up the whole weekend.

We have promised ourselves another visit, maybe over the holidays when we can have a better look round.

It's fair to say though, that even on a gentle stroll to the pub, you pass really gorgeous sights.

I think Kaffe Fassett would like this window (the photo doesn't capture the gorgeous colours).

I also spotted this shop which declared that it has 800 rolls of fabric. Yummy! To my dismay (and Mr HH's relief) it was shut. It was 9pm after all.

And the best bit is the fantastic place we have found to stay. We have been lucky enough to stay here for the last two years. Just the most stunning Georgian house...

Mmm yes, pick your chin up off the floor!

The house is also surrounded by the most beautiful gardens.

The interior is equally as lovely and immaculate and the hosts very amenable indeed.

I cannot recommend highly enough that if you ever visit the area (and you should), you stay here. Just don't pinch our room!

And now, the reason for all this exhaustion (aside from that fab but tiring weekend on the railway). Well, it's about as good a reason as there is and of course, tomorrow is finally the long awaited first-ever Textiles Fair brought to you from the original and best Vintage and Handmade gang.

So I've been a busy little Hen. I haven't mocked up a trial stall this time as I find it so exhausting! I did however, take a few snaps to show you what I have been up to...

My guest room has been looking rather fetching (until everything was packed away yesterday!) I'm thinking I should rename my little enterprise "Cushions Galore"! Well, you can never have too many cushions...

This little lot are now all ready to find new homes. There are two large square vintage fabric patchworked cushions along with two rectangular versions this time. They would look so fab in this room, actually, in front of either pillow on the bed. Hmm...

I've also had a go at a new patchwork technique. As you can see, the cushion front below is made up of traditional hexagons but they are machine pieced in half hexagons, a bit of a quicker take on English paper piecing. To be honest, it was still extremely time consuming and I kept losing track of which half to sew to which other half! Ah well, got there in the end and the result is rather pretty in all these 1930's style fabrics. It is hand tied with perle cotton to quilt it to natural cotton batting.

I found a tutorial for this in blogland and a lovely (and clever) lady on Flickr was kind enough to email me the required templates. Thank you very much indeed.

And these... oh this little (big) pair have been giving me headaches this week. That's what I get for trying a shape other than a square. In fact, I have made bolster cushions before but a verrrry long time ago so it was an effort to get the grey matter working! But I delved into my stash to cut into two gorgeous vintage floral cottons I've never used before and am so pleased with the result...

Truly scrumptious?!

Now please excuse the light in these next few photos as it was rather dark when I was packing away last night. There's more lovely bunting available, this time in possibly "pretty rather than flea market" fabrics, hence I didn't take long to come up with the title "Pretty Chic Bunting"!

Also time-consuming little labours of love, are these mini heart samplers. Each heart is "fussy cut" from gorgeous vintage fabrics and hand appliqued with a variety of beautifully coloured perle cottons to vintage cotton backing (and batting). The whole piece has been hand quilted too and finally placed in a vintage frame.

I decided to make the last one (of the three) into a little wall hanging. It is made up just like a quilt, with a rosy backing and hand sewn binding with a little vintage velvet ribbon hanging loop to finish.

Now possibly the piece de resistance. Do you remember this sorry little item? Well it has now been treated to a full HenHouse makeover.

Yes, the double dolly beds are now looking decidedly more lovely, with their mattresses covered in rosy print fitted sheets, gorgeous vintage fabric top sheets (taken from a French child's duvet cover) and of course, there are embroidered pillowcases for dolly to rest her pretty little head! And no dolly bed is complete without its very own 1930's style patchwork quilt, all patchworked and hand bound with love! Times two, of course.


So, with the help of the ever-capable Mr HH, the car is packed to the gunnels. Hmm, I think we're going to have to get a van!

So, just to remind you, the Vintage and Handmade Textiles Fair is taking place in the lovely Cotswolds town of Chipping Sodbury tomorrow, in the Old Grammar School from 10am until 4pm. Plenty of free parking, other lovely shops in the town and of course, if that's not enough, there's always the vintage tea room for which I will be contributing these (and a few more!)

We really hope to see you there tomorrow...


  1. I'm so glad you enjoyed Bewdley. I live around 20 minutes away from there and love to visit when I can. Enjoy the fair tomorrow, sadly, I'll be working.


  2. Have a wonderful day. Your stock looks gorgeous. Truly a labour of love. You deserve lots of success (and compliments).

    Sue xx

  3. I love everything you made for the fair, I wish I was going to be there but, alas, I have to work tomorrow
    Julie xxxxxxx

  4. Love all your recent stitchy creations - best of luck at the fair! G

  5. Wow, that house looks stunning, what a lovely place to stay.
    Your cushions look fab and I love the wall hanging, just beautiful.
    My daughter would love the bunkbeds, they are gorgeous, I remember having dolly bunkbeds when I was a child, mine where nowhere near are beautiful as yours though, just plain blue fabric, but I loved them.
    Good luck at the fair tomorrow, look forward to hearing all about it.
    Linda O xx

  6. Isabelle (from France)2 July 2010 at 13:07

    OH MY GOD!!! You have truly excelled yourself! Lucky people who will be going to the fair! I selfishly hope you come back with a bit of stock (I love your cushions and your heart samplers are GORGEOUS!!!).
    Good luck and have a fantastic weekend!
    Isabelle xx

  7. Very best of luck for tomorrow. Your stock looks amazing - I'm guessing there'll be nothing left to pack to come back home again at least! Love the green linen embroidered tablecloth - it's yummy!

  8. Uh yummy cupcakes I'll be having one of those!! The patchwork cushions look stunning! Definitely a labour of love, but very worth it!! And I agree, you can never have too many cushions!!

    I haven't done a mock stall and now I'm very very scared!!

    See you tomorrow!!

    Tamzin X

  9. Ooooh what gorgeous cushions you've been making. Such a shame Kelly & I can't make the fair this weekend but her wedding is on Wednesday so lot's to do!

    Victoria x

  10. Beautiful room! I love the coziness of patchwork quilts. I've been accused of being "old fashioned" but that's actually a compliment to me! :)

  11. All the pieces are beautiful, but I absolutely adore the dolly bed!

  12. Well Hen, that prior post about the vintage railway journey was absolutely charming. Your family have definitely mastered the art of time travel!

    And this post is filled with beauty. Clearly, you have been very, very busy creating all these wonders for the fair. I predict total success, and as someone else empty car for the return home. Hmmmn, maybe not...I expect that you'll also be doing a bit of shopping.

    Bewdley, with its weathered, richly colored brick, and its delightful gardens, does seem a wonderful destination. Thank you for the introduction.

    Best wishes for Saturday! xo

  13. As I was reading through your post, I thought, oh I will post about that, respond to that, oooo that is pretty and soon enough there was just too much to comment on. I love your creativity. ~Kelly

    unDeniably Domestic

  14. Such lovliness! Love the dolly bed & the cupcakes looks scrummy!

    See you bright & early tomorrow!


  15. I wish,wish,WISH I could be there! I love your bolster cushions and those heart pictures are gorgeous..I would love one of those.That grand house..what a fab place to stay!We stayed in a manor house in Dorset(B and B)and we felt like royalty sweeping up the drive! Actually it was owned by the Churchill family for years.
    Oh.. and I'm definately coming back as a cat..what a life! Hope the fair is a greeat success.

    Bellaboo :0)

  16. Oh the cushions are totally gorgeous, especially loving the bolster one!
    Again, good luck have a good one! x

  17. Hope you have a wonderful time at the fair. Glad you had a great time in Bewdley, i only live about 4 miles from there...the patchwork shop is definitely worth a visit, oh and the sweet shop :) xx

  18. A lovely jam-packed post! I wish you lots of luck at the fair tomorrow!

  19. Oh, lots of lovely things! Fingers crossed I manage to get there - use of car still being negotiated!

  20. Love everything you make Hen!!! I too am hoping you come back with some stock (going off to hide!!!) as I cannot make it this weekend.

    Your samplers are gorgeous, your cushions are beautiful and that Dolly Bunk Bed - well.......!!

    Have a fab weekend and truely I hope you sell it all - you deserve to!!

    Kerry xxxx

  21. Hope you have a successful day tomorrow. Would love to have come, but one it is my son's birthday tomorrow and two, unfortunately my arm/shoulder, just isn't up to driving the distance.

    Gorgeous photos of the village you stayed in!

  22. What loveliness you have created once again, Helen. I don't know which I like the most, all very beautiful.
    I really don't know how you do it, there must be something very special in your turbo powered smoothies.
    Like many other readers I do so wish I could go to the fair but it is too far away.
    Thank you for the Kateshill House recommendation, it looks a wonderful place to stay.

  23. Good luck tomorrow at the fair, the cushions are sure to flyout they are fantastic and must have taken you hours to make.
    Bewdley looks wonderful well worth putting on the list of places to visit, my hubby loves steam trains too.

  24. Some gorgeous makes there Hen. I loved the mix of fabrics in your bolster the best. They really stood out.

    Bet you'll all have a wonderful day as will the shoppers.


  25. My goodness you have been so busy! I love your patchwork, the fabrics are so pretty - you seem to have the knack of putting them together in such a lovely way.
    I hope you did well at the fair - living in Kent it's a long way to go, but a couple of my girl friends and I are going to treat ourselves next fair, so may see you then.

  26. wow those cushions look great, good luck for today....shame I can't come :(
    I'm hoping to go to the 1940's weekend at South will be my first :) I found something I think you might like, I'll email you next week. Have a great weekend :)x

  27. I hope today has been really successful and just wished I could have come along! Maybe next time, would be lovely to meet you!

    Hopefully you will be coming home with lots of pennies in your pocket and an empty car.


  28. You have been busy! Have fun at the Vintage & textile fair, no doubt the car will be empty for the return journey. I love your blog, and if I were in England rather that Nova Scotia, I'd be at the Fair!

  29. Hi Hen Hen

    Really enjoyed your 40s weekend. Great photos of the HenHouse family looking the part!It looks like a beautiful area. I have not been there before and can tell I'd like it based on your photos. This year we have decided to get as much done in the house and garden as we can and have fewer trips out. We need to, as there is still so much to do. I am missing not going away as often but there you go, the house and garden won't get done by themselves.
    I hope that the Chipping Sodbury fair was a success for you. I couldn't go as it was Phoebe's school fete!
    Take care
    Isabelle x

  30. Your hard work is definitely worth it! Delightful display!

  31. Carole- carolewilliamson53@hotmail.com5 July 2010 at 10:10

    Hi there Hen, I often read your blogs( a link from Lucy at Attic24).I just had to comment about your gorgeous Heart pictures & wall hanging. You are just sooo clever i love them. I live in Lancashire, so sadly not able to get to your Craft Fairs. I just love love your cushions too. I don`t have a blog
    Love from Carole in Rossendale, Lancashire xxx


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