Friday, 9 December 2011

When Hen met Cath

Yesterday, I popped into ole' London Town to do a spot of Christmas shopping. I was taken aback by how busy it was, arrrgghh! It was rather lovely though, no need to rush home as the Munchkin was taken care of, happy people everywhere and beautiful window displays, not to mention the street lights. I thought this one was pretty spectacular.

I went to Liberty, they had a special discount event which quite frankly, you need if you're going to afford anything from there! There's no denying it's the most beautiful shop in the world, though, never more so than at this time of year.

The lights over Regent Street were pretty good though it's not really dark enough in this photo to show them to their best effect. The huge cobweb-type sparkly nets were very pretty.

St Christopher's Place had gone for a different look with suspended softly glowing balls. The pink was particularly pleasing, of course.

I must confess that although I did get plenty of Christmas shopping done (my arms are twice as long today), I really had another reason for going into London. Hands up who recognises this lady?

Eeek, yes it's none other than my heroine, the simpy marvellous Cath Kidston. She had popped into her Marylebone store (where I'm pretty much a regular) for a book signing event. I was thrilled to find it was not massively busy when I arrived and Cath was happy to chat away. Oh my, I still haven't come back down to earth! I'm honestly not one of those people who generally gets starry eyed over celebs, I don't buy those tacky magazines, but I'm afraid this was different!

There you can see Cath having a look at my patchwork bag; we had a good old natter about vintage fabrics, her new book and sewing, collecting vintage and well, all sorts.

I'm thrilled to say that Cath really didn't disappoint, in fact she exceeded my expectations. Warm, down-to-earth, friendly, chatty, I never imagined she would be that nice! Oh golly, it was so great because I was prepared for it to be a crashing disappointment (like when I met Nigella, grumpy mare).

She was happy to sign my book, you can tell how nice she is from her lovely comment.

Meeting the fantastic Cath has to be my best early Christmas pressie ever!


  1. Sweet! What a special meeting... two lovely and talented women!

  2. OMG! That is incredible -- what a wonderful compliment. I winder if we'll be seeing something similar in the catalog this Spring ;)

  3. Ooooh please tell us more about 'grumpy mare' Nigella!!

    Thank you for the photos of London! Each year I always wish I could visit London and see it looking all Christmassy but never get there. Your photos provided some fab insight :D

    How wonderful to find a 'celeb' who has the time to chat, Cath seems lovely.

  4. oh wow Hen, lucky lucky you! I visited the Marylebone store in half term when we were staying at my parents. Me and my little girl took a trip to the store for her to buy her own Cath K bag and she was overwhelmed! We did get to play spy the spider in store game due to it being Halloween, but would love to go to a book signing. I'm hoping for the Patch book in my Santa sack this year :)

    Take care

  5. Wow - amazing - so glad Cath lived up to hero status! G

  6. Lucky girl, you!:) Of course Cath liked your bag... it's WONDROUS!!
    Monica x

  7. It is nice to have a day of lone Festive indulgence- and you did it in style, CK came over as very 'normal' when she did Desert Island Discs.
    I agree with Emma, we need to know more about 'the grumpy mare".Liberty is always fab- but completely and utterly for window shopping ONLY unless massive discounts.

  8. Those lights are fantastic! Looks like you had an amazing time and how wonderful she liked your bag, which is brilliant by the way. Love your corsage too :o)

  9. She's cool is Cath. I met her at a book signing at Cheltenham Literature Festival last year and we got onto the subject of knitting. She was really interested in what I was currently knitting and said that the girls in her office were really into it. A lovely, down to earth lady indeed.

  10. How jammy was that. Wonderful. Christmas has definatly come early for you.
    louise x

  11. Lucky you! She looks a lovely lady.
    The Regent Street lights still look spectacular!
    Julie xxxxxxx

  12. It is a wonderful bag. Maybe Cath will offer you a position on her design team?!!! x

  13. How nice that she is lovely! What a great thing to meet her and have your book signed. Always a disappointment to find out people are not as you hope. I too am fascinated about Nigella, I mean how awful was she?

    Of course she loved your bag, I bet she admired how well it was made as well as how pretty the fabrics are. I haven't been into London but it looks really pretty. Sometimes shopping jaunts are lovely, light and fluffy and everything goes as hoped; other times it all becomes a bit of a nightmare, especially this time of year with so many people about. Glad you had a lovely time. Definitely a great pre Christmas pressie.

  14. You have an absolutely beautiful blog, so nice to see all your lovely things!

    : )

  15. I'm glas she's lovely - its always horrid if someone you admire isn't nice in real life.

    As for her liking your bag - what a wonderful compliment :) (hope you gave her you blog address)

  16. Hi Hen,
    Glad she lived up to your expectations. I know lots of people at the vintage markets I do moan about her and how loaded she must be. I once endured a whole day sat next to a chap who used to sell her vintage fabrics many years ago and then proceeded to bitch about her most of the day. I guess if it wasn't for Cath vintage wouldn't be the buzz word it is and half those vintage traders wouldn't be in business. I say good on her, she's not the only person that's got rich from her idea - the shops are full of CK style products.
    Anyway rant over!
    Have a great weekend.

  17. Ok...Nigella. We went to a book signing of hers and queued outside for ages in the cold. Then a minion came out and said that she would not be signing any more books and chose the last people in the queue who were allowed to go in, everyone else could forget it. (She'd only been there about 45 minutes.) Bizarrely, those last people were myself and MR HH. Once inside the shop, she was surrounded by people, she never said a word or even glanced in our direction, just scribbled her name and on our way we went. I was really disappointed and wondered why she'd bothered!

  18. Ooh thanks for lovely post and gossipy bit too! I love the colours in your outfit too - always nice to see how you dress as well as your beautiful goods that you make. Thanks!

  19. Ooowwww Nigella, what a shame!!!! But Cath! What a doll!
    Nattie x

  20. Now that is VERY exciting! To meet the girl herself beneath all this Cath Kidson madness! I love your bag and so pleased she was nice and that you got to show it to her. :)
    Jess xx

  21. what a brill day for you- and a great book to bring home as well!

    I met CK once when I was selling at Kempton antiques market- she bought a whole load of fabrics from the stall, paid by cheque...and me being in a rush trying to serve loads of people at once (and without my glasses on) asked her to put an address on the back!
    Ho hum!

  22. oh wow how great! your bag is lovely by the way :)

  23. WOW you are one lucky lady!! I'm pleased Cath was lovely and down to earth- she's such an inspiration. x

  24. Oh wow! Lucky you and such a gorgeous photo of you two.

    Thanks for the images of London. I have spent a couple of cold Christmases in the UK and these brought back some very delightful memories. Thank you for that. I didn't meet anyone famous though. :) x

    Oh yes, adore your bag.

  25. What a wonderful account of your shopping trip and meeting CK! I am in love with her things and have ordered several items on the US website. I got a floral day bag and then just recently got the plaid day bag for winter! I love it! I saw that same plaid in the scarf on CK and have the wanties.. I checked the website and it's not there. Wah! I'm curious about the book now..
    *M*E*R*R*Y* *C*H*R*I*S*T*M*A*S*!*
    ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  26. Never really liked Nigella, she comes across false to me, your experience was very unprofessional of her.

    Nice to know Cath is a genuine lovely person. Glad you had a great day and experience.

  27. Hi Hen.....I would have been thrilled too....we are such fans of hers!
    I'm so pleased she was lovely to you......a while back I wrote to her, with a bag design and she wrote back a charming letter.....I've still got it!
    AND to have a book signed by her with such a lovely personal message too! You are a lucky ducky!

    Have a super nice weekend my dear!


  28. Hen!
    You're inspiring Cath Kidston now!! Of course she was inspired by your bag, they're fabulous!
    What a fantastic time you had, and I have to admit to being very green reading this post :o)

    I'm so pleased she wasn't a disappointment to you. I'm, erm..., not much of a fan of Nigella so I'll leave the comments on that one to those who are... ;o)

    I love your brooch you had on too, so pretty with your dress..
    Thankyou for sharing London lights..brilliant:o)
    Have a fantastic weekend Hen, and take care lovely lady,
    Donna xx

  29. How exciting, lovely when people turn out to be as nice as you imagine. No wonder she admired your bag, it is lovely.
    I'm not a Nigella fan and not surprised at your experience at the book signing.
    Carol xx

  30. How wonderful! And nice to hear that Cath is down to earth

  31. Your photos make me soooo..... nostalgic for the Christmas I spent in London 2 years ago. (I am in Australia)There is nothing like those beautiful London Christmas lights. And how fantastic to meet Cath!

  32. Wow, how exciting!!! You can keep your movie star celebs, give me someone with real talent & an eye for beauty any day. Hen, I'm surprised she didn't grab you to design for her, your bag is gorgeous.

  33. What a fantastic day! I met Cath last year, she really is lovely. She asked me if I was ok as I looked poorly, I had a chest infection at the time!! We also chatted about me meeting Stanley. Funny she was doing the book signing with Nigella..... I'm not a fan but she was friendly, maybe she was having a bad day when you met her!! x

  34. Awwwww what a fabulous photo and I am so glad she got to meet YOU as you are indeed an inspiration my sweet x

  35. what a great day out and how lovely that Cath didn't disappoint. Your bag is gorgeous and so well made, I am not surprised she was impressed.
    Ann x

  36. What a shame 'Cath' didn't read your comment about her beforehand!!
    "I love this one. The grey fabric has been used for the bags Cath sells in her stores (the bags made by little Chinamen)".
    Not only disrespectful but completely politically inapropriate to boot! Shame on you!!!

  37. Just goes to show - not all comments show up!!

  38. I do not think my comment is disrespectful. Cath is a lovely person, she is also very talented. I would be quite prepared to say to her that I find it disappointing however, that she/the company (because she is no longer the major shareholder) has moved most of the manufacturing overseas to China. The fact that this country has so little of its own manufacturing industry anymore is a major part of its current downfall. Emma Bridgwater still supports the china clay industry in Stoke and has a thriving business. As to being "politically inappropriate", I'm not sure what this thow-away phrase means but if it is un-PC to support your own country, well I am guilty of that.
    By the way, you have left your comment as "anonymous", seems you are not willing to put your name to what you say. Shame on you.
    All comments show up once the moderator has got out of bed and been able to approve them, given they were left at 2.30am.

  39. I'm so pleased Cath K didn't disappoint, AND she admired your bag! What a wonderful day you had Hen. I've just been admiring your CarltonWare collection too, fabulous isn't really the best word, and so fantastic it's got into the Hand A calender! Well done Hen! Vanessa xxx

  40. hi Helen, you didn't share this exciting news when I saw you on Sunday at the Flea market! How lovely to spend time chatting to Cath. Nice one! Lizzie x

  41. Isn't it fabulous when meeting an "idol" and they live up to expectations!

    Victoria xxx

  42. Oh. My. Goodness.... I am SO jealous!! ;)
    How wonderfull... I am totally Cath Kidston obsessed myself, this would have been a dream come true for me also. She is absolutely right though... you are an inspiration.

    Louise xx


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