Tuesday, 22 May 2012

Lights, Camera, Action!

The last few weeks have been incredibly busy here at the HenHouse.  The building works are now in their third month and I am pretty cheesed off with the whole business, to be honest.  I'm used to the luxury of having a lovely peaceful house to myself most days so the constant presence of smoking, singing builders is unsettling to say the least.  I've found it hard to settle down and get on with many sewing projects but that's not to say there hasn't been a fair amount of making over going on.  

But first, it wouldn't be right (nor British) not to talk about the weather.  It's a little dull here at 7am but there are exciting promises of sunshine later!  AND this coincides with the week of Chelsea Flower Show, oh happy days.  Most thrillingly, I have been able to pick my first peonies from the garden and also, the first roses.  And they just happen to be seriously divine.

I can't tell you what variety they are as this rose was already here when we moved in.  To look at it, you would now think it is a climber but I'm unsure whether it was always a climber or has just gone slightly mad in recent years!  It vies for first place as my favourite rose in the garden and has a heavenly scent, too.

It's been a delight to snip off a few blooms and bring them indoors, to arrange them in my new (old) china rose jug and arrange them on the table on the landing just outside my Den.

You may recall that this is the site of the "Bagpuss Table".  Whilst making yet another run to drop off things at the charity shop last week, I ended up coming home not empty handed.  This bamboo table called to me, all £5.50 of it.

And did you spot my new lamp?  I have become quite giddily obsessed with lamps, dear reader.  This one was spotted at the Shepton Mallet Flea Market, £8 for a bargainous 1930s/'40s oak barley twist lamp base and a shockingly dreadful 1980's shade!  No problem: a spot of new braided flex courtesy of Mr HenHouse later, and a lampshade with delicious vintage fabric from yours truly et voila.  What a team!

What to put on those handy shelves under the table top?  It had to be piles of delicious vintage fabric.  These are generally of a heavier weight, so those I would use for cushions and lampshades, rather than patchwork.  This delightful sight greets me every time I go upstairs.

What of the original Bagpuss Table?  Fear ye not, that has simply moved to the next landing and had a little makeover of its own.

I recently came to be in possession of this brown lamp.  It's very un-me, don't you think?  But none the less, it had indeed sat in the spare bedroom for a few years but was liberated last week when I turned that bedroom into a full scale quilting den, getting rid of the bed and so on (more of that another time, oooh it's exciting!)

This lamp did look nice in the environs of the chic calamine pink and mink bedroom but had no home elsewhere in the HenHouse.  

But it is a tale with a happy ending.  One can of pink spray paint and a recovered lampshade later and the Bagpuss Table has a new lamp.

More lampy stuff has been going on downstairs.  This time, I bought the 1940's oak lampbase on eBay and recovered a charity shop shade with some gorgeous French red rosebud fabric which came from Lizzie (The Washerwoman).  Yes, I am quite quite potty about these fabric lampshades.

We bought the little 1940's glazed cabinet at the Shepton Mallet Flea and I made a little door curtain using that same yummy fabric.

Finally, (are you all lamped out yet?), our beloved Bridport yielded a rather lovely Globe Wernicke bookcase.  I have wanted one of these for ages and imagine our joy when we got it home to find that an original CC41 plaque is attached to the back.  We somehow managed to find a spot for it up on the top floor landing, an area which is largely the Munchkin's domain (the top floor, not just the landing!) and before I knew it, he had claimed the bookcase as his own.  He has selected items he owns and made a fabulous little display, all on his own.

Yes, there atop the bookcase is yet another lamp.  The base came from Bridport's vintage area for a few pounds, the lampshade was 50p from a charity shop and it was a simple job to cover it with some groovy retro Spitfire fabric and finally, a very Jubilee-esque trim.

Hmm, surely there must be more surfaces here in need of lamps? I feel my love affair with making over lamps is not yet over. I urge you to get making over lamps yourself, a very satisfying and thrifty affair indeed.  One thing's for sure, no one else is going to have a lampshade like yours!


  1. Lovely, lovely, lovely. I have been thinking of making over one of our lampshades and you have now really inspired me to have ago. Love Munchkins bookcase, he obviously has the nack for displaying vintage lovelies too! Have you ever thought of doing vintage home tours, I'm sure the queue would be round the block?!

  2. I can tell exactly what that Rose is! It is called Whisky Mac, it was my mum's favourite rose, the colour is so lovely. Mum always bought one for every house she lived in. It was always first in bloom in the garden too.

    Lovely lampshades and book case.
    Julie xxxxxxxx

  3. I love your blog...a lot! Your patchwork is very inspirational, and your lamp shades are gorgeous. Gosh the Munchkin is clever, his display is awesome.
    I have a jug the same as your new/old one and some of the fabrics that you have... very pretty.
    Thankyou for lots of happy blog reading and inspiring pictures.

  4. Morning Hen! the sun has his hat on here in the lake district...Loved the post....The lamps are so cheery and individual..Feeling a creative afternoon coming on..hehex Maria x

  5. Oh...my...goodness! Your home is sublime...I love ALL tha lampshades, and the way you've created every corner, and your little man definitely takes after you. You both have such a goos eye for arranging yummy corners. Love it! Tania ♥

  6. Loving your lamps! Especially the spray painted one - the fabric on the shade is gorgeous! Your roses are utterly divine too - the look like they are made of tissue paper!
    Victoria xx

  7. I recently covered a tatty shade with fabric patchwork scraps, mostly about an inch square, some a bit bigger. Edged top and bottom with ribbon, it is SO pretty, and it's the first time I have done it so feel a bit pleased with myself actually.
    And I sympathise with the builders... we had them for a month and that was long enough!By about three weeks!

  8. I have total lampshade envy now!
    I did attempt a makeover and used some pretty fabric,cut into squares and stuck on a plain white coolie shade (I was trying for a sort of patchwork effect) quite pleased with myself...but not a patch on your lovely ones.Great bargain finds which you have a knack of turning into something wonderful.
    Enjoy the sunshine! :0)

  9. You have some beautiful lamps :) I just adore your fabric stash, have a wonderful week sweetie

    Bee happy x
    Have a delicious day!

  10. Great lamp ideas Hen, but my favourite thing has to be the embroidered tablecloth which your re-vamped brown-to-pink lamp is resting on....its stunning!

  11. I am SO with you on the builders thing. When we first moved here we immediately had the kitchen extended. Were told 6-8 weeks, it took 16. Now, six years later I mustered the strength to have one of our garages converted. We were told 2 weeeks - it took 2 months. We had been toying with the idea of another extension, but NEVER AGAIN!!

  12. Sensational lampiness. But who is that on the cover of the 'Ideal Book for Boys', it looks just like the Munchkin :)

  13. Seeing that bookcase, I just realised that my mum has one of them. The bookcase is actually stacked on top of a bureau. I didn't realise they were American. Thank you for enlightening me. Love your lampshades and lamps! (and your blog)! Sharon XX

  14. beautiful lampshades and fabric collection!

  15. You've made some beautiful lampshades! I am truly amazed at the transformation from the modern lamp to the fab pink base and shade! Inspirational!

  16. Love your lampshades and that pink painted lamp and shade, oh my! You have a lovely home and all your pictures are just eye candy.

  17. Hen, your lampshades are all fine additions to those quirky lamps. I also must say how lucky I think you are to have found that little bamboo table. At any price!


  18. Chip off the old block or what, eh? Munchkin is developing the neccesary skills beautifully, and hasn't he done a good job!

    LOVE the lamps, especially what you've done to the brown/pink one. I am SO envious of your shade-renovating ability; I fear it has more in common with old-fashioned 'handwork' as we used to call it, than sewing.I was never very good at the cutting and gluing, I was very 'fingers and thumbs'. Mind you I was pretty cr*p at sewing too, in those days. Is it something one can embark upon without having 'done a course'? Whatever, they are brill!

  19. Thanks all for the lampshade love! Lynne, it's very easy. The flat shades are just a matter of cutting and glueing, boring but not hard. The gathered style shades are a matter of making a tube of fabric then the little tie. No courses have been undertaken in the making of these lampshades!
    Hen x

  20. Lovely post! The bamboo table is a fabulous bargain, and good luck with the builders, and hope you're not feeling too invaded! Have a lovely week, Claire xxx

  21. Ohhh... those lamps !! And that pinky covered shade !!
    Now I have to decide which colour of spray paint to use one a dingy lamp of mine !
    I just love little lamps glowing around the house. There is one on my bathroom counter, a wall sconce beside my pantry, and even one on top of my fridge !!
    Sooo cozy looking !!

  22. Great job on all! I happen to have 3 lamps and a chandelier (with 6 shades) that I need to re-do. I've been rather successful at putting them off. :D

    I can't wait to hear more of this bedroom takeover business! :)

  23. Fabby lamps Hen!
    Love the way the Munchkin has got the arranging bug - can't imagine where he got that from!!

  24. I adore all your lamps! Lighting is so important in a home. I made several lampshades.. I took golden "antique" parchment paper, cut sections or whole arcs to fit the lamps I wanted shades for, then did a pierced design, lined it with white tracing paper, glued them to the shade frame, then trimmed out the edges with ribbon. It's so neat to create your own glowing work of art! ((hugs)), Teresa :-)

  25. ooooo I'm in awe of your talent. Love, love, love your lampshade makeovers - particular the pink one! so glad to have found your blog xx

  26. You've gone lamp shade crazy Hen!! I brought a shade a few weeks ago to make over.... it's still sat in the kitchen waiting! Yours look beautiful & I love the new bookcase xx

  27. Okay, here goes . . . I have never seen a more lovely blog, it is awesomely delightful. I am in love! Your photography is amazing, your fabric collection is mind-blowing , but the incredible things you make from it beats the band. I could go on and on, but that would just waste the time I could be digging into your past posts. Oh, one more thing . . . the photos taking at the train depot, WOW!!! What a charming site. I am your newest follower # 1480, (how can that many people be wrong). I know that you are busy and you may not even have the time to read your comments, but I'm going to take this opportunity anyway, please accept my warm and humble invitation to visit and hopefully to follow me, too. Connie :)

  28. Super duper post my dear Hen!!

    I love your peonies in that lil' ole' jug!! Just beautiful.

    Your lampshades are awesome, and I so wish I was as talented as you!!

    I can't wait to see your new quilting room!! Oh, just think, a whole quilting room to yourself Hen! I'm excited and it's not even mine! LOL

    Have a most splendid rest of the week lovely lady.
    Take care Hen,
    Love Donna xx

  29. P.s. So, so LOVE munchkins cupboard!! You have such a talented little lad....but then he has a talented mummy too! xx

  30. Heh Heh, right, I'm taking you at your word, Hen and have 2 shades I'd love to cover. They will be 'flat' ie no frills or pleats, but will have a degree of difficulty - for me- as they are....erm......not a straight cylinder..what do I mean.....the lower ring is bigger than the top....well you know the kinda thing I mean. Conical? Sheesh, it's my age! Lx.

  31. Really nice lamps Hen!! You're so talented. I love your quilts too. Was so inspired by them I made a couple of wobbly small quilts for my kids...I am now hooked on it. Thanks for the inspiration.


    PS my fave lamp is the Munchkin's one...that is sooooo nice.

  32. Pondering the rose...looks too 'frilly' and full to be Whiskey Mac- which is a bit more sculptured in bud and when open you can see the centre between the petals...looks more like an old rose of some sort with that full fluffy centre of petals and the very round shape- does it repeat bloom or just bloom once at the start of Summer?

  33. Hi, I just love your blog! all that patchwork is so inspiring. Your lamps are very pretty. Munchkins display is great.

  34. Beautiful lampshades (and fabric!)
    Think the rose could be Abraham Darby http://www.davidaustinroses.com/english/showrose.asp?showr=1
    which has a strong fragrance and has similar habit (short climber/tall shrub) to yours.
    William Morris is another contender
    Carol xx

  35. Wow I love what you have done with the lamps, I'm a fan of lots of lamps, much better than the glare of a ceiling light.

    Very talented Munchkin, evidently his Mum's talent is rubbing off on him :o)

    Peg x

  36. Hi, Just a little note to say how I envy your talent!! I love lamps too amongst all my other loves,china teasets,crinoline lady table linen,anything with pink roses on, knitted granny blankets, baskets of all shapes and sizes,vases, teapots,country living magazine,mollie makes,The Button Tin in Rotherham, and I could go on and on and on !!!!and my fave The Custards, Kind Regards Pam, have a FAB jubilee!!


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