Thursday, 22 September 2016

Wisteria Cottage - For Sale...

So, I've finally taken the plunge and put the La Tache House on an Internet site.

I've chosen because they seem to be well-known and I've heard of people who have actually made a sale through them.

This is what the advert looks like:

Wisteria Cottage

...and this is the website address:

I hope it generates some interest and a sale!

Thursday, 15 September 2016

Hanging Around...

The bunting is (I DID promise you some pictures)and so am I, as my car has been off the road for three weeks now!

I have been stuck in the house with no transport for what seems like forever, but at least I was able to get on with the bunting.

I have made two lots so far.

The first was a pastel colour mixture...

...and the second a simple pink and white combination...

Each heart has a bead at the tip to help it hang well and they are stiffened with a watered-down PVA mixture to stop them from curling.

As you can see from the first picture, taken in my garden, the weather here has been extremely dry.  Until yesterday we had not had rain since the last week in June!  Then, on Monday night there was a violent storm with high winds, followed by a day of rain - though fairly light.

In other areas the storm caused a lot of damage and one of the casualties here is my Internet connection.  At least, I think that is what's wrong. Now I can only access a handful of sites - those that load quickly - and with many others I just wait and wait and then get a message that the site 'Timed Out'.  Hopefully normal service will be resumed at some point and, when I get the car back, I'll at least be able to get Wi-Fi in a café...

Incidentally, if you normally click on my pictures to enlarge them, you may not be able to for this post as I couldn't link them to Flickr as normal, because of that slow Internet :-(

Meanwhile I am on my third set of heart bunting in a mixture of 'sea and sand' colours...

Sunday, 4 September 2016

I Heart Bunting

Golly - almost 2 months have gone by since I last blogged here!  I have posted on my other blog, Chez Penny, in between, as I have done a lot of renovation work there. Which is why I haven't had much time to post here, or do any craft work lately.

After the renovations on the Chez Penny apartment were finished, I did 10 days house-sitting for a friend, looking after her dog, cats, fish in the pond, and watering the garden.  That was a new experience for me, and was good.  I had the chance to do lots of crafting, although it was mainly crocheting.

I made several doileys from this pattern, and added beads to some of them so they could be used as jug covers.


I must explain that the weather here in France has been extremely hot, for several weeks, and the fly population seems to be loving it and increasing exponentially.

When I got a bit tired of the doileys I made some lavender hearts from Lucy(of Attic24) 's pattern...

lavender hearts

Though I used my own flower pattern and added a bead on some, to help them hang better. I thought these would be good hung on a clothes hanger under blouses etc in my wardrobe.

I'm currently working on some heart bunting, using the same pattern - each heart with a bead for weight, and I will also stiffen them with watered-down PVA adhesive once they are all strung together.

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Annie Sloan Workshop

Well, today dawned cold and misty but the sun soon burned off that mist and it turned into a real scorcher! Fortunately, I was indoors most of the time, doing a workshop with Jay at Mon Chic Cottage.  It was all about Annie Sloan products and was a fascinating day.

This is what I made, learning lots of techniques...

Workshop result

We learnt how to découpage a paper napkin and paint a stencil...

stencil, découpage and craquelure to transfer images in a couple of different ways...

image transfer and craquelure

...and how to apply metal leaf - the loose leaf sort and a transfer one which was attached to paper on one side, making it MUCH easier to handle...

Metal leaf

Then we learned to wax with both clear and dark wax and finish off with a craquelure glaze for an 'aged' look...

Craquelure finish

Now I just have to find the time to practise the techniques...

Friday, 24 June 2016

Crazy Weather

All Spring the weather has been cold.  Cold and rainy.  Then, on Wednesday the sun came out and suddenly we were in the 30s!  I was able to cut the grass...

Jasper Carrot I need you!

...even on the terrace!

Tidy terrace

And then relax with a glass of wine.

It was so hot that I was weeding out some thistles at the back of the house at 10pm, that being the coolest time.  It was light until nearly 11 o'clock, which was wonderful.

Yesterday was hot and sunny too, and I was able to gloss paint windows and doors at the shop, and one shutter too - although it was actually TOO hot to paint the other one!

Shutter, ready to paint

THe picture above is the shutter ready to paint, but it's had one coat of gloss now.

Anyway - on to my point...


Such crazy weather!

Wednesday, 8 June 2016

It's a Machine World

Yesterday Janet and I went on a morning course not too far from here.  It was a birthday present to her, from me, as she has a big birthday (shhhhhhhhh - she'll be sixty) next week, and we both needed something to get us back in control of our sewing machines. The course was run by Laura Conolly Gillard who runs it at her Grange du Patchwork.

We had a great morning and learnt to clean and oil our machines as well as lots of things about feet (for the machines) and winding bobbins (an eye-opener for me) as well as meeting some lovely new people.

So today I got down to cleaning and oiling my New Home machine, that I nearly sold a couple of months ago.  It runs much sweeter now and I had a go at lots of the embroidery stitches and a little play with automatic buttonholes...

Embroidery stitches from New Home 692

...and now I'm just going to do some plain sewing - I'm making a curtain for the Le Dorat shop/apartment.  It was a pair of short curtains, but I need floor length for this window, so I'm just going to pattern-match the material and make one long curtain.  It's a room on the third floor so the curtain might not actually be ever drawn across, but it will just sit there and look pretty.

Lengthening the bedroom curtain

I've never tried this kind of thing before, but it's not too hard, I don't think. This is the window where it will hang...

Bedroom . front

The room is nearly finished now, but this photo makes it look hardly started. I had to move everything to that end to paint the opposite wall, which is probably going to be white or  pale yellow, as every other wall is buttercup yellow, and it's getting a bit much...

Because I decided to do this today, the sun is shining and the birds are singing - typical!  But I should be able to show you some more photos of it soon, although they might well be on my other blog, so keep looking there as well as here :-)

Thursday, 2 June 2016

It Might Well Rain Until September...

In my last post it was a lovely day here.  But since then, there hasn't been much lovely weather.  Unless you like rain, of course, or you live in Scotland or Seattle and are used to it.

I don't love the rain, but I do love this song...

...although it seems sad to me, even though the words are not.

Here in the Limousin, we rarely get a full day of rain, but now we've had a full week of it and I think I can easily live without another day of the same.

My view across the valleys to the Monts de Blond is as misty as a Walt Disney film about Ye Olde England...

Wet garden 1

... and the garden is growing faster than a very fast thing and it's too wet to cut the grass, or pull up the weeds.  The lavender hedge is growing amazingly quickly and is taller than I've ever seen it.

Wet garden 2

It's been cold too, as well as wet, and I haven't done much this week.  But today I went over to the shop again and did some painting.  I wanted to make a start on some lights I bought for the living room.  They were advertised locally for only €40 the pair and I bought them a couple of months ago.  The colour was not right for the room, but I knew I could 'Annie Sloan' them!

There is one with three branches...

3-branch light before painting

...and one with five branches...

5-branch light before painting

I am painting them with Annie Sloan Chalk paint in cream - they have had one coat so far and it is looking good!

3-branch light after painting 1coat

After another coat and a touch of gold. I think they will be spectacular.

The 5-branch one is a bit of a pain - it has lots more leaves than the other one and it is almost impossible to get to all the bits. Consequently I am having to paint it a bit at a time, so it is dry enough to handle when I come to paint the next bit! I might try to spray some of the central pieces, but I'll see how far I can get with the rest tomorrow.

Jay, from Mon Chic Cottage gave me some bright pink paint, and I mixed it with some cream to lighten the colour and then painted a picture frame with it...

Pink frame for Flamingoes, after 1 coat

The frame is for a picture of flamingoes, so pink is very suitable...

Flamingoes in white frame

I liked the pink so much that I wanted to paint something else with it too.  I thought of doing a large pink square on the wall behind the cooker, but decided that the paint would not be durable enough, so my eye fell on the toilet door at the back of the room. Just the inside surface...

Pink inside toilet door

Looks pretty good, don't you think?  I think it will dry to a matt finish, though it looks glossy now.

Back to the painting grindstone tomorrow!  Maybe the rain will have stopped by then too and I can take my pictures without the flash!