Saturday, 30 May 2009

My First Ever Strawberry's

Last year I bought 2 strawberry plants in Wilkinson's they were £2 bargain!
I had never grown strawberry's before so thought this would be a cheap way to give it a try.
So I planted them out into a pot, watered them and looked after them all summer long. Unfortunately no strawberry's appeared! I was quite disappointed but I had read it takes a year for a strawberry plant to fruit so I just had to be patient and wait it out.
Well they stayed out all winter through wind rain & snow which I really thought might kill them, but as spring began to appear they started to come back into life and flourish.
When we re vamped the veggie patch I moved them up there to a sheltered sunny spot by the shed and blow me down flowers appeared then tiny little green strawberry's. Hooray!!!!
Well this week with the hot sun & torrential rain they have really grown and I have 3 RED strawberry's.
I am very excited!!! 3 really isn't enough to make jam though!! I may well just pick them and eat them there & then, I will have to invite Gav to join me though or he will be really miffed.

I'm defiantly going to get some more plants this year ready for next, and I think one of those cute strawberry plant pots so that next year we will have Chez Sophie Strawberry Jam x

Monday, 25 May 2009

A Hive of Activity.........

This weekend has been a hive of activity in the Chez Sophie household.
Saturday started with a trip out with Ruthie to pick up some Freecycle goodies, then we took a leisurely drive along the coast to one of our favourite charity shops (Adur Furniture Network). No bargains there this week, but worth a visit anyway.
With rumbling tummies calling for food we decided to go for brunch at my new favourite cafe, Pestle & Mortar in Worthing. One Yummy Organic Full English Breakfast & Latte later we were ready to attack TKMAX where I can spend hours in the home ware department which is where I found my my treats for this week.
About a month ago I saw some lovely white picture frames in there, Perfect for the blue room!I decided to be good and not buy them but ever since I have not stopped thinking of them and I have looked for them every time I go in. Well they had 3 on the shelf so I had the lot!
I have the perfect photos to go in them and can't wait to get them on the wall.
I also found a beautiful large white wooden tray which I had also seen before, but this time it had a RED sticker in it so it was a double bargain!! It is now sitting on my New Oak Refectory Dinning Table from Laura Ashley - My mid week bargain as it was Ex display, No chairs yet but I will be on a serious hunt for them now.
I arrived home to find Gav in the garden mowing the lawn, and decided to help by edging the paving slabs which run up the length on the garden, I have to say they have never looked so good (as you could hardly see them before it is a great improvement!!)

Sunday came and it was time to get ready for the annual May Bank Holiday BBQ.
I dressed the tables & garden with candles & paper lanterns which looked beautiful as it got dark, and put pashminas on the chairs encase it got chilly.

We all sat round the Fire Pit till the early hours toasting marshmallows with chocolate buttons squished in between them, yummy.

Lots of Rose was drunk, all the food was eaten and bed beckoned.....
Well the sun has shone all weekend, we had a great time with Friends & Family what more could we want. xx

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Batch End Beauty........

I have always had a weakness for wallpaper!!
Childhood memories are a funny thing, I remember my mum wallpapering my room at least once a year, we would go and choose the paper and then put it up (real 80's changing rooms) From beautiful 1980's Laura Ashley, to a moment of 5 year old madness My Little Pony!!!! And that weakness has lasted all my life...
The batch end bin in Laura Ashley along with the remnants basket have always been the first point of call when entering the store.
I recently went in to my local store and found a beautiful paper in said bin for £1.50, well I couldn't put it back I had to have it....
One role sadly is never really enough but you never know when it's going to come in handy and come in handy it did.
I bought a child's chest of draws on EBay which needed a lick of paint and new draw knobs, great for my blue room. My sister in law had bought me some beautiful glass draw knobs from Monsoon which I have been dying to use on a project.
But the draws needed something else, which is when I decided to wallpaper the fronts with my batch end beauty.. And as Gav says they look a million dollars, he has to say that though to keep me happy!!!
Take a look at the photo's, I will be doing a bedside table to match xx

Saturday, 9 May 2009

Fireplace's have become an obsession!!

When we moved into our house last year we had one open fireplace, which wasn't really to our taste but we had the added benefit of free heating in the lounge.
We also had blocked up fireplaces in the dinning room, and the 2 larger bedrooms.
As we have began to decorate the house Gavin decided to investigate what was behind the blocked up fireplaces!!
Needless to say after a lot of mess, dust & re plastering!! we now have 3 open fireplaces.
We decided to go down the Victorian/Georgian route, we like the old cast iron surrounds and thought they would look nice in our 1930's semi.
I started to bid for them on EBay which became a bit of an obsession! I managed over a few months to get 3 beautiful fireplaces at bargain prices, we also bought a new oak surround for the lounge.
The fireplace I got for the bedroom needs a real makeover as it is thick with layers of paint, I looked into stripping it myself with nitromorse but it all sounded a bit too much for me. A friend mentioned to me that she had had her fireplace restored by a company called Pyromania a period fireplace centre in Hove.
Well last week I bit the bullet and arranged a meeting with Peter from Pyromania, I was only really wanting a quote for the bedroom fireplace but when he arrived and saw the large Georgian fireplace (pictured right) we have for the lounge, he explained that he fits fireplaces as well. (Hooray I was starting to worry about Gav giving it a go on his own!! Images of chimney stacks falling through the ceiling had been worrying me for a while now)
So Peter has taken the small Victorian & large Georgian fireplaces away to strip, dip and make beautiful and I can't wait to see the results on the 4th June when he comes to fit them.
Finally there is light at the end of the tunnel, and proper decorating can commence.

An Early Start!

I have always loved car boot sales and charity shop's, one persons cast offs are another persons treasures. This morning on my way to a car boot sale I stopped at my local charity shop to drop off a box, and got hooked inside by the glint of a mirror, which I had to have!
As I browsed the store I also spotted a beautiful old glass jelly mould which took me back to my Nanna's kitchen many moons ago, this also found it's way home with me. The car boot sale went out of my mind as the creative juices started flowing and I had to go home to start my mirror renovation. (will add before & after images later) I also had a beautiful chest of draws & Lloyd loom laundry basket delivered today, which i found in the Friday Ad. They need a Major renovation but will look great in my small spare room when finished.