Christmas goodness!

This is my most treasured Christmas present - lovely, because it's old and gnarled and also because it is so very Ian to know that I would have desperately wanted this, had I come across it...or ever known such a thing might be in existence! It is a skipping rope made from old weaving bobbins and threaded with plaited jute rope that would have once been used as window cord in a sash ....and it smells so wonderful that I am attempting to limit the amount of times that I allow myself to put it up to my nose for fear of sniffing its wonderful scent away; oil, old factories, mining towns (which I know smell appalling, but make me feel vaguely nostalgic as my great grandparents used to live in one...and even once the pit had closed, as soon as you got out of the car the air still smelt different there) - yes, these things are all quite grim, but it somehow adds to the skipping rope's loveliness and authenticity that it has real signs of its components being used and of having a smells of itself, rather than a shop or our house (which currently just smells of paint as we are in the process of preparing for the arrival of the new kitchen...why ever did I not think through properly what work on our part might proceed a new kitchen being fitted?!).

And here are some lovely fabrics that Ian spent hours trawling the Internet to find. The ones on the left and in the middle are both french and are date back to the 1930s and the one on the right is from the 1960s. He bought the fabrics from Country House Antique Textiles, previously unknown to me. As the name suggests they specialise in vintage fabrics. Ian said that the women who run it are absolutely lovely, incredibly helpful and that I must implore others to shop there! The buttons were my presents from the children.

And as if that wasn't enough, Ian also gave me one of Flavia Del Pra's gorgeous tiles that is listed as a coveted item in my sidebar. I may use it as a pot stand once our kitchen is finished...

Today we have had tantrums (children's', not ours!), windy and cold bike rides, paint fumes and slightly aching heads (ours, not the children's, very probably alcohol induced from the previous night when we had people over for dinner)...but it had all been made better by teatime with the lovely Red Cross parcel that my sister gave us when she found that she seemed to have cooked rather too much for one sitting: a warming curry, naan breads, a big bowl of fresh spinach and her fantastic beetroot's so lovely when you can take something out of the fridge and have the most delicious home-cooked meal, without having to cry over a single onion yourself. Thank you, Laura!

Tomorrow we plan to take the children swimming to try and restore them to their usual good natures and are hoping that this will be a suitable antidote to any possible cabin fever that they may be suffering from.


  1. Your hubbo sounds great, putting all that thought into what you would like for Christmas. Do you hire him out for coaching for useless hubbo's who require lists to buy Christmas presents! My Dad came up with a better gift idea, A day at the Spa for me, my mum, my sister & my 2 sister in laws. I hope you had a great Christmas, have you got lots of nice plans for the New Year!

    Have a good one!

  2. Such lovely gifts! I am not quite sure that I would ever have the courage to use those vintage fabrics but I would love to have them just to look at. I can definitely understand your love affair with the skipping ropes but it would be incomprehensible to my husband so it would not appear on Christmas morning for me.

  3. What sweet and thoughtful gifts. He's definitely a keeper!

  4. what lovely presents, happy skipping!

    the car play mat was actually a hit (i hope, or was he just being polite?), well, he's only 3 and he did sit on the floor with me for a while and have a fiddle around. i cheated though and added another attraction to it by popping some matchbox cars inside, he was rather taken with the e-type jaguar!

    oh, and those kimonos are beautiful, they look divine : )

  5. Thank you soooo much for the lovely mention. I am thrilled that you liked your fabrics. What a thoughtful man your husband is to get you such beautiful gifts. You are both welcome in my 'shop' anytime :-)


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