I want to share some of the lovely gifts that I received from family and friends this Christmas. I was utterly spoilt by them all. They were all very naughty, those scrummy generous lovelies. I am a firm believer in Christmas being for children, but I can't deny my squeals of joy on December 25th. There were homemade gifts, craft fair gifts, a couple of charity shop gifts, a bit of designer loveliness, lots of fabulous reading material, gardening centre vouchers and lots of other lovely things too.
Just look at that pile of books. My family really know me, don't you think? I honestly can't think of a nicer gift than a book. I have managed to keep away from the siren call of the Kindle. There's nothing better than a book, in my book.
Pickles and Preserves has some lovely flavour combinations for jams and jellies. There is also a section for pickles, chutneys and other sauces. I plan on growing a lot of different tomato varieties this summer, because I want to make and bottle my own pasta sauces. This little book will be very handy indeed for that alone.
Marc bought me The Photographers Eye. It isn't a technical manual (phew) but is a really useful guide to composing and taking great pictures. I have read the chapter about framing the photograph, and the boundary of the view finder. I have also learnt a little more at how we scan what we see. It's really interesting, and I hope to use it to compose better pictures this year.
Stitch! has a couple of projects that I hope to take to 'Happy Stitchers' this year. Some easy embroidery projects that I can turn into cushions. I have a thing for cushions. Doesn't everyone?
My Mum bought me this saucer and sugar bowl from a charity shop. It is so beautiful, and is loved all the more because it was only a couple of pounds. She walked past the shop and spotted it being put in the window. Apparently an elderly lady had brought it in that morning. It had belonged to her mother, and she was having a clear out. So her loss was my gain!
It is hand painted and was made by Myott & Sons. I think it may be Art Deco, because of the colours used. Either that or post war. I've read up about the factory that produced it, and it would seem that many of their pattern books were destroyed in a fire. I love the simple design and the pop of colour. When I run my finger along the side of the bowl, I can feel the paint raised from the surface. It's very tactile in that way.
One of the things I love about a charity shop buy is researching it. I still miss those times my Mum and I spent trawling the charity shops of West Cornwall. We are both Magpies and love a good rummage. Last year was all about the one tier, metal based cake stand. I think that this year will be about the cup and saucer.
At the beginning of December, my sister in law and I went to a craft fair at a local village school. It was packed to the gills with local craftiness, and we were in heaven. I spotted a stall selling vintage tea plates that had been stamped with modern transfers. I loved that, and the sentiment of the message stamped upon each plate. My sister in law must have done a sneaky one while we were there, because this was from her. It made me feel very tearful when I opened my present and found it looking up at me (the Cava probably helped).
My friend Naomi gave me the ear ring dish and the hand made bird and boot. She also gave me a hand made chicken door stop, which is just fab. Her sister is a very talented woman who spends her free time making beautiful Tildaesque creations. Naomi is such a thoughtful person. It was very kind of her to give these to me.
Another gift from my sister in law. A gorgeous hand made bracelet. I love the colour green. I'm a natural
This is a little gift that I gave myself (!). Orla Kiely melamine beakers. It literally doesn't get any better than that. They will be used when we are out and about in Betty. Or as toothbrush beakers. Or plant pots. I love them. I think her stem pattern is my favourite. Simple and elegant. Just like me!!
Did you have anything lovely in your stocking this year?