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Category Archives: places to go

Local Vintage Fun – The War Room @ The Churchill!

Oh my, this is just too exciting!

We have a genuine vintage inspired event here in Alderholt on 23 February at 7.30 – get your dancing shoes on and hit the Churchill Arms for their fabulous Blitz NightThe War Room

Not only is this the fabulous opportunity to break out your red lips and nails and those gorgeous nylon stockings, but it will be a chance to put on your dancing shoes on.  We are incredibly lucky to have breakthrough act Public Service Broadcasting who were recently featured on Lauren Lavernes BBC 6 Music show and will be releasing their debut album on May 6th.  They have also been championed by other BBC Dj’s like Steve Lamacq and Stuart Maconie as well as being named as a 2013 up and coming act by Time Out.  Genuinely not to be missed.

  Click on the poster for a taster of their brilliant track Spitfire!

Signal 30 Tour

They will be supported by Dare to be Charlie who have a great track record, check out their website here.

There’s loads more information as well as fab 40s styling ideas that I’m glued to on the Churchill Arms Website – I’m currently beavering away on a lovely snood especially for the occasion – check out this fab blog to give you some inspiration

Great Blog with links to snood patterns and other 40s ideas.

The Churchill Arms Website will give you all of the up to date information and the event facebook page  is also a mine of information and even if you can’t make it please join and share the event.  Tickets are just £10 in advance,£12 on the door (or £8 if bought in advance in the pub!!) and here’s the link  .  It really is going to be a fantastic night!

It’s so brilliant that something new and different is happening in Alderholt please support it and come and have fun.  I’m so looking forward to catching up with everyone in all their glamorous glory!  Do come along!

Keep the vintage love xx

Fantabulous Shops in the Glorious New Forest – Lulu’s Boutique Lymington

This is epside two about the gorgeous shops  we’ve recently come across on we’ve our doorstep – Lulu’s Boutique in Lymington.

Lu Lus 2

To be honest we did know about Lulu’s before having visited their pretty erstwhile shop in Salisbury and used their web-site but this little treasure house is a step up in gorgeousness from that and has the advantage of being in a place where you can combine a fantastic cuppa or a walk by the sea with a touch of retail therapy.  Any men stuck for last minute present ideas for the lovely lady in their life should really pop down this weekend!

Check out this beautiful front window – who doesn’t need a pink Christmas tree in their life?  I bought some of the traditional paper decorations – they take me straight back to my childhood!

Lu Lus 5

The shop stocks all of the best in girly kitch including my favourite Tatty Devine jewellery

Tatty Devine!

Tatty Devine!

and all things Cath Kidston and Pip Studio and also fabbo items from Danish homewhere brand Rice who I love especially for kids and for camping.   My flamingo obsession would be happily appeased by these party forks.

There’s loads of unusual ideas for kids as well like this cool colouring book

The homeware is fantastic too – If I had the cash knocking about I’d be replacing the boring spotlights in my hall with these pretty lights

Lymington is such a pretty little town combining the best of the New Forest and the Hampshire Coast and has a nice selection of  shops, bars and cafes so it’s really worth a visit.

 We especially like the style of the Stanwell House Hotel  in the centre of town which we really nearly hired for our wedding.

Stanwell House Hotel

 But you are not far here from the  Pig Hotel

The Pig Hotel

which is top of my current wish list for a visit or at least a home grown dinner!

Lu Lus 4

Even if you don’t need any last minute Christmas pressies, this is a perfect bracing New Year treat.

One last thing, as my 4 year old is saying this year “Merry Christmas to All!”

Keep the Vintage Love xx

Fantabulous New Shops in the Glorious New Forest

In our quest to entertain the children and attempt to shop for Christmas (I’m in denial about Christmas by the way!)  we have recently come across some gorgeous shops on our doorstep.  In the first of a (very) mini-series we look at The Fox in the Forest which is absolutely brand new in Ringwood.

Ringwood  is a pretty market town on the edge of the New Forest within easy striking distance of Salisbury, Bournemouth and Southampton.  It has a range of premium fashion shops around the Furlong area with a rather less hurried atmosphere than you would find in a big shopping mall but if you head away from this and a take a couple of minutes walk down to the market square and along the high street to Fridays Cross you will find some great unusual and non-chain shops and cafe’s including an amazing Chocolate Shop and beautiful lingerie shop Lolie and Bella.  Not to mention my favourite book shop Paperview.

fox in the forest 2

The Fox in the Forest has evolved from successful Web-business of the same name and showcases beautiful things made by the owner and other local craftspeople.  The aim of the shop “is eventually to become a gallery/workshop where artists/craftspeople that are local to the New Forest can showcase their work”  and the lady has exciting plans to create a workshop space as well. We bought some brilliant bits for my eldest boy’s lovely girlfriend but obviously they’re top secret until after the big day!  The shop is near to Smiths as you head towards the market square.  Do pop in if you get a chance, there are even handmade soaps from Frome.  Here are some photos that I took on Saturday, I’m desperate for a knitted animal head for my hall!

fox in the forest 5

fox in the forest 4

fox in the forest 1

Lovely puppy Indiana

Keep the Vintage Love xx

Exciting NEW shops news!!

We had a fantastic afternoon recently in our beloved Pokesdown!  The Dorset Scrapstore was having an open afternoon at their new premises in Boscombe and one of my favourite vintage loving ladies was opening her new shop on Christchurch Road.  In short this was a day not to be missed!  The Scrapstore is of course aces and full of amazing bargains for the crafty amongst us  and the free crafty workshops went down a storm with the small boy, but the star of the day was our trip to Emily’s beautiful shop Cotton Candy Designs which at the Pokesdown station end of Christchurch Road.

Photo: Checkout our brand new sign!

Emily is formerly of Poppy Meadows  about whom I have waxed lyrical a number of times and was with us for our first vintage fair last year where her handmade items went down a storm!  She has teamed up with her friend the equally lovely Cara Lloyd-Hopkins of Carara Designs for this venture and the outcome is a pretty and welcoming shop choc full of lovely items for the home and pretty Christmas gifts galore.  Cara specialises in fantabulous handmade items for the home and beautiful handbags all made in the Summerhouse at the end of her garden.

Cara in her new shop!

Gorgeous shop window showing off fab handmade bags by Cara

Emily has recently added upholstery to her repertoire and I was especially taken with the gorgeous floor cushions in the shop which are definitely on my Christmas list!

Giant cushions and reupholstered arm chair just right for a cosy night by the fire.

I’m also hoping that she will renovate my original Lloyd Loom Chair that has been sat in my garage for about 10 years waiting for me to get around to it!  I know commissions are taken.   Other furniture renovations had me drooling too like this 1950s kitchen unit for example.

Kitchen cupboards have never been so stylish!

Check out the ladies facebook page for more photos, or even better take a trip to Pokesdown for your Christmas shopping this year.  There’s just so much to love on our doorstep!  You’d only be putting cash in the pockets of Amazon otherwise afterall!

Keep the Vintage Love xx

Fab Places to Stay – Belgium

Shhh, another brilliant secret getaway…..Ghent and the Belgian Coast.   Belgium is SO cool for so many reasons, not least that it’s so unexpected!  Everyone will know about the canals of medieval Bruges and the Grand Place of Brussels, possibly even Antwerp for it’s diamonds but few will know of the beautiful and relaxed city of Ghent, the fantastic Art Nouveau architecture found across Flanders or the love of vintage and design that you will find here.  In fact the 70s bird fabric that is our title design was bought here – a massive piece for just 10 euros – a fraction of what it would have cost in the uk!

We set ourselves a task every time we think about going away to find the most unusual and often cheap places to stay that we can possibly find.  In fact at least half the fun of any trip is the searching out some new and exciting place to stay!  Ghent saw us in possibly my favourite ever find, the Ecohostel Andremeda.  

Ecohostel Andromeda

The Barge Andremeda complete with water treatment reed bed on deck

Mainly a floating hostel with dorms we did manage to bag the only private double room which was literally 70s heaven for me! Here’s some of my favourite photos of the decor on board.

 

They take the Eco element very seriously on this boat – all of the toilet and shower water is recycled by the reed bed on the main deck and as well as the extensive repurposing on board there is also a fab organic breakfast available in the kitchen.  The place could not be more welcoming and friendly. An all round win!

Ghent itself is a gem of a place. It’s an ancient university town with a castle and lots of stunning buildings.  The food is good (especially the rib house next to the castle) but don’t ask for rice with your local chicken soup,  Waterzooi!  The great things here are the gin bars which are absolutely amazing and often with lovely views over the canals, and also the local elderflower aperitif called Roomer.  This comes in a beautiful bottle, is a pretty golden colour and has tiny flowers in it.  It’s to die for and even better with gin of course, my favourite  tipple!

Historic Market Hall – great place to buy local specialties and have lunch

 

 

There is also the fantastic Gent Design Museum which covers design of all periods including a fantastic teapot exhibition and also a complete art deco room moved from a local home that just has to be seen to be believed it’s so beautiful.

checking out the design museum ceramics exhibits

After a couple of brilliant days in Ghent we headed off to Westende on the coast to a truly remarkable hotel called De Rotonde which purely by chance was run by a family from Ghent and so was stocked up with Roomer.

Hotel De Rotonde

The most remarkable thing about this hotel is that it is still here at all after being almost totally destroyed by the bombardments of two wars.   Our favourite thing about it though (apart from the great dinner!) was the sea view from every room as it’s right on the vast unspoilt beach.  It is also right be the Belgian Coastal Tram (De Kusttram) which is not only cheap and easy to use but takes you through some fantastic windswept scenery.

A fantastic spot for any winter beach lover

You can stop off where you like and see more of the Belgian coast than just the port at Ostende.  Including the toy town seaside resort of De Haan, the prize resort of King Leopold and a prime example of the faded grandeur of the area.

 

De Haan Station on the Tramway

If you get to Belgium also check out Antwerp for some amazing architecture ranging from renaissance squares to fabulous modernist and art deco.

 

Not to mention diamonds and amazing shopping due to the students of the Royal Academy of Fine Arts with its large fashion department.  Shopping ranges from high price tag to new young designer and extensive vintage shopping.

All in all Belgium is a fantastic short break destination and one of my favourite places to visit full of surprises and hidden gems!

Keep the vintage love xx

 

 

 

Fab places to stay – The Roseland just don’t tell anyone!

We’ve just come back from an amazing camping trip to Cornwall.  Remarkably, and in contrast to what usually happens, we had good weather, while the rest of the country was thinking of building an ark!  We were staying at our favourite family campsite in our favourite secret corner of Cornwall, the arty and picturesque Roseland Peninsula.

 No one can claim that staying on a cliff top is going to be less than bracing but the views more than make up for it, as does the joy of the children who rush out to feed the animals and collect the eggs at 10am every morning.

We met up with friends there this year and took the ferry from St Mawes to Falmouth or just hunted for sea glass on the beautiful empty beaches. Bliss!

Our one wet day took us to new Cornish Tin Mining museum and arts centre Heartlands.  This place is a real gem.  Funded by lottery and European Development money in the main, it is a lesson in how to preserve an industrial history and landscape.  The exhibits were also brilliantly well thought out and really engaged the kids who got to dress up as miners and play a fantastic board game that really brought home the hardships of mining life.  It was a joy to see my four year old hook up with a passing four year old girl to play this.

Tommy being a Tin Miner

On top of all of this there are also events, a great cafe (best. hogs. pudding. ever!) and some fledgling art shops and workshops.  We bought some fab Seb West prints of St Ives (where we got married) and fell in love with everything in the Four Seven Collective – one of the artists studios on site.  This is the brainchild of Louise Gale and we bought one of her lovely Cornish cottage pictures.  Needless to say the yarn bombed bike outside was a big attraction too!

Yarn Bombed Bike

Most of the studios on site have workshops and courses on offer as well.  There are various art installations on site too as well as fantastic grounds and an adventure playground but given the rain we didn’t make the best of these.  Hit St Ives after that (as we did) and enjoy a walk on the harbour and a burger at Blas (best. burgers. ever!)

Meg enjoying the best ever burgers at Blas in St Ives

Can’t wait to get back to Cornwall, you should go, just don’t tell everyone how beautiful it is!

Keep the vintage love xx

New Blogs and a lost two months!

This New Year I’ve become completely obsessed with Pinterest .  It started as a way to help to save ideas for my sister in law’s wedding that is coming up in October but now I’m merrily pinning everything from hotels to remember to knit knitting patterns to come back to.  And that’s in addition to Ravelry!  I’m in danger of achieving nothing but creating a big wish list on the web!

A great thing though, is the new inspiration and blogs I’ve come across in the course of browsing through other people’s pin boards.  I love this blog from Australia for example.  

It’s called Completely Coastal and definitely lives up to the title with pages of inspiration for coastal living and lots of diy projects too.  Sarah who writes it has been renovating an old beach cottage having moved out from the UK.  A must if you love coastal style!

I’m loving a lot of crafty sites too at the moment. Funky organised Craft Room (I wish!) This one is called Allsorts and has all sorts (see what I did there!) of free downloads and inspirational tutorials.

This is another US blog called Not Just a Housewife, I especially love the outside living inspiration, check the pinned up flowers for a party, very pretty!

I’ve also found some brilliant makers in my search for a dress to wear to the wedding.  My Etsy email updates are SO dangerous, but here’s a selection…

Loving these 50s inspired tea dresses at Dig for Victory

Way out of my price range are the beautiful dresses made by Alexandra King at Make Me a Dress 

but slightly more realistic are the pretty things at reliably cool Tara Starlet.  These cotton lawn and linen dressses are really lovely .

On the accessories front I’m slightly bewitched by the lovely earrings at BlueFinch Boutique     owner Jenny is a lovely lady too!

We have been out and about too.   If you’re in Dorchester check out the Dorchester Curiosity Centre which has everything vintage you can possibly think of and a nice cafe.   Back in beautiful Pokesdown there is the Crooked Book which is a haven of vintage homewares, second hand books and really good coffee.  We picked up a fantastic orange melamine camping lantern for our now defunct caravan!

I’m going to start listing up and coming craft and vintage events again now that Spring is here so please let me have any details of events you’d like to big up.

Keep the Vintage Love xx

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