Monday, 16 May 2011

An Ordinarily Fantastic Weekend

Yes, indeedy, that's what we had over the last few days! I do hope you did too. We're spending a lot of time at our cottage in Somerset at the moment as some exciting plans are afoot there. More of those next week! Last weekend, we worked away like troopers such that we felt we deserved a day out in our beloved Bridport on Saturday. We were so lucky as it was a beautiful day and I can't think of anywhere I love more. I woke up at about 6am and couldn't go back to sleep, I was so excited!

By now, you're probably thinking I'm a little nuts, a bit like the folks standing in that queue in the photo above. I cracked up when I got home last night and saw this photo, all those bemused expressions: "Why is that mad girl taking our photo?" My early wake-up meant that we were in Bridport before 9am and so I was able to join the queue of eager West Country beavers wanting to get into the W.I. Market. Once I'd taken their photo, that is.

Yes, the market is that good. Lemon curd, knitted socks and mouthwatering scones aside, there is simply no better place to buy plants. We've been putting in some hard work in the cottage's front garden recently (along with a local couple who have helped us, thank goodness says my old back) and the reward: plant shopping. Golly, I love it! At this market, you can get all sorts of veg plants, annuals, bunches of pretty garden flowers and what I am usually after, fabby herbaceous perennials, divided from somebody's (no doubt stunning) country garden. All much cheaper and often in better condition those at than your local garden centre. All the sorts of plants your granny would have had.

After I'd swooped up all the best plants and we'd trooped back to the car and made it look like a mobile nursery, we headed to the charity shop, this time we were actually taking donations in! Of course, you wouldn't have expected me to come out empty handed?

That big beautiful crochet blanky at the front (there were four, I was restrained, no?) had to come home to grace the Munchkin's teepee. When I mentioned to the shop assistant that this was its intended purpose, she bought one herself for her grandchildren!

It seems all cowboys need a sausage sandwich before saddling up and getting out on the range!

Good job the Munchkin fuelled up, as little did he know that exciting shed-painting-times were ahead of him once back at the cottage. There's nothing wrong with a bit of child labour, I say. Be gone, nasty orange-y shed.

He obviously doesn't take after his shirker of a Dad who's busy watching the birds (the feathered kind).

Mr HenHouse has clearly found himself a new furry friend.

Only joking! There's no way I could call my man a shirker and after working hard in the office all week and a few well-earned pints of Bridport's finest cider to restore the equilibrium, he got straight back to our indoors project. A little taster for now...

There was furthermore no skiving to go to the pub for lunch. Instead, we feasted outdoors on fine West Country produce: pork pie, cheeses, ham, Leaker's infamous cheese and cider bread and not forgetting pickled onions, on which the Munchkin lost his second "fang" in two weeks!

Me? Well I've been busy too, of course! At the cottage, it's been all hard graft in the garden but at home in the week, I was able to indulge my main love and get on with some patchworking, to make some new cushions for the window seat in the sitting room.

They're simple enough but that's the way I like it best. Let the vintage fabrics do the talking.

There's a mixture of lovely 1940's and 1950's flowery cottons, bits from vintage aprons (which were already stained or holey), bits from embroidered cloths (ditto) and even a bit of applique and embroidery with some hearts.

Mostly, the patches are single 5" squares but I added in a few four-patches for a bit of interest. The front is tied using prettily coloured perle cottons onto some leftover quilt batting.

But what about the quilt? The Dresden plate? Oh yes, it's finished, long since and awaiting it's ta-dah moment. Might you join me please next time?

(P.S. I am still stuck with the "old" camera while the better one is being fixed so please bear with me on the photography front!)


  1. Hi Hen,
    Just love those cushions on the rustic windowsill. They all look great together.
    Good old Bridport, don't you just love it!

  2. Yes, I will definitely join you for the big reveal moment!
    Your quilts are ever-so fantastic, they make me all jealous every time I see one...

  3. The fabrics in the cushions are lovely! looks like a lovely weekend! Cx

  4. Lovely cushions!
    Where did you get those curtains from? That is just the kind of pattern/colour I want for my living room, but can't find any like that anywhere!! Please help!!

  5. The cushions are beautiful - a fitting showcase for all the lovely fabrics! Can't wait to see the various 'reveals' you're tempting us with!

  6. ha i love that photo and the expressions on the people in the queue.. they probably think you're going to make them famous!!
    the market sounds fantastic..

    love the fabrics you've used for your cushions they look perfect on the window seat.. i think i would just sit there with my book and watch the world go by.. it would be very distracting!!


  7. Looking forward to visiting Bridport again this summer - we're camping nearby.

  8. It looks like you've all been very busy but glad to see there has been local fare to keep you going!

    Can't wait for the big reveal!

    Victoria xx

  9. Lovely cushions, they look so comfy, I would love to sit on you window seat and comtemplate!
    Jlie xxxxxxx

  10. Wonderful post Hen, love the patchwork!

  11. No wonder people queue for that WI market.
    Love your patchwork cushions, beautiful material.
    Munchkin is looking really happy with life.
    Carol xx

  12. lovely plant finds... well done... I need to do some serious gardening here! Cottage make-over looking good! xx

  13. A beautiful post.... thank you for sharing your weekend. x

  14. Really lovely cushions - and what is it about the Bridport charity shops? I have not seen a crochet rug in a shop round here for at least 2 years!

    Pomona x

  15. ALL FABULOUS!I so enjoy visiting you!
    Monica xo

  16. What a lovely weekend. Beautiful cushions ... oh, how I wish I had your patience (and talent)! x

  17. Oooh what busy bees - I am very intrigued about your bathroomy project if I'm guessign right. What lovely boat tiles.

    We too shall be down Bridport way very soon in our caravan. Very, very over excited about it I can tell you. But I would be even more excited if I were staying in my own little West Country thatched cottage. What a retreat to have, it looks picture perfect but I imagine that's due to huge amounts of hard work. Well you derserve it Henhousers I reckon. Your window seat looks fabulous. I don't think I could move far from it myself.

    Have a lovely week Hen. Bless your H with that grin! I bet the tooth fairy paid double for such a sweet boy.

  18. Goodness you have finished the quilt already ;-) I can't wait to see it. You have the most lovely days out. We have the Wi market on a wed and fri i love it to for plants. I love your patchwork cushions there are gorgeous you have given me an idea now i will have to try and make one of these for my bed. dee x

  19. Oh Hen! That window seat is to die for! It should be in a book or magazine! The pillows are wonderful. Love that kitty one too.

    I have a weakness for plant buying myself. My husband cringes every time I'm at the store. :)

  20. What a fabulous cottage with the prettiest window seat out! How rustic and natural looking. Your cushions are very beautiful indeed. What a brilliant market you went to and that second hand shop must have been an absolute gem.

  21. Now that looks like a very busy and lovely weekend!
    What a wonderful place to buy your plants!
    Love the cushions Helen, so pretty!
    Rachel x

  22. "which were already stained or holey"...I was only thinking of Her last week as I cut-up a VERY worn but exquisitely embroidered linen cloth.
    Just to be on the safe side I even muttered a prayer to the Patron Saint of Make-do-&-Mend!

    I love ordinary weekends- but then I'm so boring I only like going away so that I can come home again!


  23. The local food sounds lovely. I can't help myself when it comes to plant shopping, every year I buy the same cottage garden plants & they always die... guess they're not suited to my soil :( x

  24. Thank you for sharing your lovely weekend. Looks like you all had a lot of fun.

    I love the cusions you made are simply adorable. Your window seat is looking fab.

    Can't wait for the unveiling of the Dresden Plate quilt.

    Ruby x

  25. I love reading you blog - it reminds me that there is such beauty to be had outside of my drab office!! You brighten my day with your cottage pics!

  26. Hi Hen! So lovely to "spend" a weekend at the cottage with you! I have to say that the Munchkin is "every post" more cheeky and adorable!!!
    Warm wishes from Venice :)

  27. I so enjoyed sitting here in Oregon and getting to see things in your British surroundings. I love blogs! I have to smile, your hubby's cute curly hair looks so much like my grandsons's curls. You can see photos of him on my blog. I just put up some photos of my Oregon garden on my blog.. I'd like to invite you to enjoy a cup of tea in my garden. :-) Hugs, Teresa

  28. They have a street market in Bridport too that we managed to miss as we were on the beach.Got great chinese there thou and looks like a great venue in the old cinema.
    Quite a cool place even thou we visited at around 6pm on a
    Sat before driving back home to Bath.

  29. It looks like you had a lovely weekend. Your cushions look fantastic too. xx

  30. stunning cushions as always (my Hen original has pride of place here!) i love the repro 30's/40's fabrics you use but where can I get them? I want to do a quilt for my little one but cant afford to use my vintage bits!

  31. I was in Bridport on Saturday too! We've just moved down this way (4 weeks ago) and have been having lots of fun exploring the nearby towns and villages. We were in Frome a couple of weeks back for the Vintage Bazaar and I linked to your blog on mine as I remembered a lovely post you had written which inspired me to want to visit and se Catherine Hill. I wonder if your Somerset cottage is near our new home? We're just outside of Crewkerne.

  32. Utterly in love with your cushions, so pretty!!! Loving Bridport, we go there lots as we are only 30 mins away........
    Nattie x

  33. Just want to say how much I am enjoying your posts. I'm getting addicted to looking at your lovely, lovely sewing. All very inspiring, what a creative and energetic force you are! Thanks for blogging. Jo


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