Tuesday, 10 December 2013

A wonderful start to the festive season

This month we started the festive season with a family trip to choose our Christmas trees. It was wonderful to see the children deciding which trees will take pride of place at home and the smell of the trees throughout the house has certainly got us in a festive mood.

This year we bought our trees locally at Aber Farm, Ogmore Vale. It is the farm's first year selling Christmas trees and we received a very warm welcome.  

There were plenty of trees to chose from and Iris also had lots of fun playing with the lovely farm dogs.

It felt great to support our local farm and we came home with perfect freshly cut trees.  

I'm sure we will be visiting them again next year!

This month we will also be enjoying the build up to Christmas with plenty of fun family activities such as crafting with our little ones, baking festive treats and choosing gifts for our loved ones.

We will keep you posted with our adventures over the next few weeks and also share with you a few of our recipes and decorating ideas.

Have you put up your tree yet?  

If not, happy decorating!

Leanne & Deb

Thursday, 28 November 2013

The Magical Mysteries of Christmas

Once again the weeks have flown by in a whirlwind.  We have been so busy preparing for Christmas that Autumn seems to have come and gone in a flash!

The weather has turned frosty, the trees are almost bare and we are looking forward to opening the first door of our advent calendar.

There is something so magical about December, it really is our favourite time of year!

This weekend we will finally give in to the children's constant requests to get a Christmas tree.  On Sunday afternoon we will put on our Christmas music, pull out all our favourite decorations and get our houses ready for the festive season.

For us, the run up to Christmas is just as special as the big day itself.  We love listening to the little ones practicing songs for their Christmas concerts and helping them make a wish list for Santa.

No doubt, this year as the children are a little bit older, they will start to ask questions about Santa and how he manages to get around the world in just one night. 

Fortunately, we have just discovered the truth about the magical mysteries of Christmas in a fabulous new book called 'Santa Claus: The Book of Secrets'.

The book reveals ancient secrets about Santa Claus and answers popular questions such as 'Who is Santa Claus?', 'How did he first get his job?', 'What do the Elves do?' and 'How does Santa get inside each house on Christmas Eve?'.

So, this year, as well as putting out our special Santa key and leaving a plate of goodies for Santa and the reindeer, we will be starting a new family tradition by reading The Book of Secrets to our little ones on Christmas Eve.

For us, the most magical aspects of Christmas are the special memories we create with our family and friends during the festive season.

Let the festive fun begin!

Leanne & Deb

Thursday, 24 October 2013

Autumn walks, foraging and conker tournaments

The past month has simply flown by and we can't quite believe that it's almost the end of October!

Over the past few weeks we've been busy sorting through deliveries of new stock, photographing our new products and making exciting plans for the months ahead.

Despite everything being quite hectic, we have also really enjoyed the changing seasons.  Our local countryside is breathtaking at this time of year and at the weekends we have been exploring nature with our little ones.

We have been for beautiful walks, picked blackberries (and had purple hands to prove it!) and collected lots of leaves and pine cones.

One of our favourite things to do at this time of year is playing conkers.  It is one of the simplest childhood games, and for us, it conjures up so many happy memories.

Last weekend we took our little ones to gather conkers from the Horse Chestnut trees we have been visiting each year since we were small.

Much to their delight, the ground was strewn with conkers and many of the shells had already opened revealing the smooth shiny conkers within.

We had great fun playing in the leaves and gathered a huge haul of conkers.

When we got home the children couldn't wait to get them on strings and it wasn't long before the conker tournament was in full swing.

Inevitably there were a few bruised knuckles (mainly the grown-up's who were far too competitive!) but it was a wonderful family day.  These are the days we will remember in years to come - memories that we will cherish forever.

This week we are planning Halloween costumes and preparing for the hectic festive season ahead. 

Hope your all having a great Autumn.

Leanne & Debra

Friday, 20 September 2013

Autumn, harvest and interiors inspiration

With the official start of Autumn almost upon us it is time to pack away our summer wardrobes and enjoy the changing of the seasons.

Autumn is a great time of fruitfulness and harvest.  

The local shops will be full of seasonal produce and we will be retreating to our kitchens to try out homemade soups and have a go at baking an apple pie.

The highlights of our calendar this month will be watching our little ones perform at their harvest school concert and taking them to collect conkers (just as we did when we were small).

We are also looking forward to cosy nights by the fire, crisp Autumn mornings and watching the wonderful colours of the falling leaves.

If you are considering updating your home interior, the new season is a great source of inspiration. 

Autumn is synonymous with a rich color palette of orange, yellow, red, brown and purple.

Here are some fabulous Autumnal interiors we have found this week:

{image source: www.housetohome.co.uk}

{image source: www.homesandantiques.com}

{image source: www.pinterest.com}

{image source: Dear Lilly Blog}

{image source: www.andsotobed.co.uk}

Wishing you all a wonderful Autumn!

Leanne & Debra

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

National Cupcake Week 2013

National Cupcake Week is a whole week devoted to one of the nations favourite sweet treats (sounds good to us!).  This year it runs from 16 - 22nd September.

National Cupcake Week was created in 2009 by British Baker magazine to celebrate the vibrancy and innovation of the British baking industry.  

Since it's launch there have been hundreds of cupcake bake offs, sales, theatrical cupcake installations and bids to bake the world's biggest and smallest cupcakes.

These adorable cupcakes were created for the National Cupcake Week 2012 bake off...they are almost too pretty to eat!

We can't think of a better reason to put on your favourite apron and do some baking (or if your short of time, pop to your local bakery and see what delights they have made).

These pretty pink ones (on our cute GreenGate June White Dish) look delicious and will certainly go well with a nice cup of tea!

Go on treat yourself!

Leanne & Debra

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Modern vintage - our new autumn collection

After many weeks of anticipation, the new GreenGate Autumn/Winter collection has arrived.  

As many of you know, we simply adore GreenGate products and I can't tell you just how excited we were opening the boxes!  For those of you new to Greengate, we are quite sure that your will come to love it as much as we do.
GreenGate products combine Scandinavian design values with a rich heritage of antique French and English floral patterns and prints.  The collections are designed so that all GreenGate patterns can be mixed and matched throughout the ranges to create a beautiful collection of vintage inspired homeware that can be added to year after year.

Our GreenGate Autumn/Winter collection includes luxurious cushions, decorative accessories, pretty stoneware cups, vintage inspired storage tins and bakeware, as well as adorable gifts and Christmas decorations.

From soft tones of grey, delicate pinks and refreshing hints of mint to rich autumnal tones and classic winter combinations – there is something for all colour schemes.

So, as the summer sun begins to fade and temperatures start to fall, we will be embracing the autumn months by warming our hands around a pretty cup filled with hot chocolate and snuggling on the sofa with luxurious GreenGate cushions.

Well you didn't expect us to stock the shop and not order an few extras did you?

Why not take a look at our complete GreenGate collection over on the website at www.lovefromrosie.co.uk/greengate

Hope you like it!

Leanne & Deb

Friday, 16 August 2013

School holiday camping fun

With the children off school for six weeks it can be quite difficult to keep them entertained. Especially when it's raining! 

In this weather our little ones really love to make dens. We gather up lots of blankets and cushions and make a cosy little space for them to play (just like we did when we were little). 

When the weather is good, our little ones also love to go camping.

We recently went with a group of friends to the beautiful Heritage Coast Campsite in South Wales.

 The children had great fun playing in the tents, running around in the grass and eating sausages from the campfire!

We also noticed that this month our best seller on the website has been this Cowboy Wigwam.

It is great for indoor and outdoor play, making it perfect for the unpredictable British weather!

We are hoping the weather will improve again soon so we can enjoy a few more camping trips before the children go back to school.

Whatever you've been doing, we hope you're enjoying the holidays.

Leanne & Debra

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Kirstie's fill your house for free

Tonight we are looking forward to the first episode of Kirstie Allsopp's new television programme 'Fill your house for free'.

We have been fans of Kirstie Allsopp for many years and share her passion for craft and homemaking.  In fact she was some what of an inspiration for us in our decision to set up our own business.  

In this new four part series, Kirstie is on a mission to prove that furnishing your home doesn't mean spending a fortune.  Instead of buying new, she is encouraging the nation to look for preloved items that can be upcylced and given a new lease of life.

We will see Kirstie take over a shop in Glasgow and stock it with eye-catching furniture that she sources with the assistance of salvage expert and designer Charis Williams.  She then sets about transforming each item into an amazing and unique piece with the help of inventor Max McMurdo and artist Lee Baker.

In each episode Kirstie will help two families transform their homes, creating chic interiors on the smallest of budgets and proving that second hand is certainly not second best!

Kirsties Fill your house for free starts tonight at 8pm on Channel 4.  

Don't forget to tune in!

Leanne & Deb

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

Learning new skills at The Traditional Upholstery Workshop

The term “upcycling” has grown in popularity over recent years and is commonly used to describe the process of rescuing and transforming an old piece of furniture.  However, this is not a new concept.  

The tradition of restoring old furniture can be traced back many centuries.  In particular, traditional upholstery methods date back to the 18th century and are still used today to restore old worn pieces of furniture back to their former glory.

Last month I decided to explore the world of traditional upholstery and spent a wonderful week learning new skills at The Traditional Upholstery Workshop in West Wales.

The course was held at The Old Piggery – a converted workshop surrounded by beautiful countryside just outside the village of Meidrim in Carmarthenshire.
My first project was to breathe new life into this old nursing chair.

To begin, course tutor Liz Marks introduced me to the equipment in my upholsterer’s tool box, showed me how to use a tack lifter and set me to work removing the old tacks, material and stuffing from my chair.

When the chair was stripped down to the frame, I filled holes in the wood with a mixture made from sawdust and PVA glue.  
Fortunately the spring unit was in a good condition so there was no need to replace it.  My next job was to  polish the legs of the chair to revive the colour of the wood.

When the preparation stage was complete I moved on to the upholstery.  Within a few hours I recreated the back of the chair using jute webbing, tarpaulin hessian, rubberised hair and cotton wool felt.

Next, I covered the back of the chair with calico material and was shown how to use metal skewers to tension the fabric and create a smooth curved shape.
When the calico was fixed into position I covered the springs and base of the chair with tarpaulin hessian, learnt how to tie an upholsterers slip knot and was shown several stitching techniques.

The following day I built up a cushion using layers of hair and cotton wool felt.

My next challenge was to make a seat cover from calico material.  I was taught how to use an industrial sewing machine (which is much faster than a domestic machine!) and eventually made a circular cover, fitted it to the chair and tacked everything into place.

Next I was ready for the top fabric! 

Liz patiently showed me how to measure up and cut the fabric ensuring the weave was straight. She also helped me make contrasting piping (which was surprisingly easy to do) and fabric covered buttons for the back of the chair.

After lots of metal skewers (and a few holes in my fingers!) the material was tensioned, tacked and stitched into position.

I used glass head pins to hold the piping around the edge of the seat, stitched it into place and was shown how to sew shallow buttons on the back of the chair.

Finally I stitched the back cover of the chair into place and attached a hessian cover to the base of the frame.

After days of hard work my project was complete! The result is this beautiful nursing chair (which now takes pride of place in my bedroom).

I thoroughly enjoyed my time at The Traditional Upholstery Workshop and found the whole experience immensely rewarding. 

There is a huge sense of achievement to be gained from transforming a tired old piece of furniture into something that will be admired and cherished for many years to come.

Now I can't wait to get my own set of tools and start my next project!

Leanne x