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The Great Greys – It’s Time To Choose A New Paint

Why is it that when the sun comes out, I get a desire to paint? It’s possibly because all of the beautiful light shows up colours for what they really are, and if you saw my Instagram post yesterday, you will have noticed that I had got to the point where the magnolia in the guest room was just too painful for me to withstand a moment longer. So it’s time to wave bye-bye to a colour that inspires me the least.

So what to choose? Probably one of the colours that I find the most inspirational. Those colours that create such an incredible backdrop for your rooms that you can accessorise in any way that you like. It’s like the perfect base.

Before we delve into these beautiful colours, I would like you to know that I am in no way promoting these colours for any other reason other than that they are my favourites at the moment. I have tried other paint brands, but currently these colours react to light in a way in which I haven’t found in other paint brands.

FB skimming stone

… Farrow and Ball’s Skimming Stone – No. 241 …

I currently have Skimming Stone in the office and it looks AMAZING against white. It’s a warm, pebble grey that works so well with taupes and neutrals. Such a calm colour and in no way a risky ‘Will I like it?’ kind of shade. I’ve had this colour up for about a year and a half now and I still notice and love it every day.

 FB ammonite

… Farrow and Ball’s Ammonite – No. 274 …

Ammonite is a cool, blue grey. Still very much a grey neutral but it has a colder feel. I currently have this colour in the kitchen and it works brilliantly alongside deeper greys, whites and mustards. It reflects light extremely well and gives a sense of spaciousness – especially perfect if you want a bit of a colour but are worried that it might make your room feel smaller; this won’t.

FB Elephants Breath

FB Elephants Breath 2

… Farrow and Ball’s Elephants Breath – No. 229 …

Elephants Breath is a deeper version of Skimming Stone. A rich, grey with a very slight pink undertone. It can look very grey towards the evening but a bit more blush in brighter light. It is a majorly delicious colour.

We chose this for our bedroom because I wanted a deeper, cosier colour that would still work wonderfully with the white sloped ceilings that we have. I apologise for the quality of these photos but I didn’t want to edit them away from the true colour. I felt that that wouldn’t be particularly helpful if you were using these to help you to choose too.

So, by talking this through with you, I think I have made a choice! Which one would you choose?

Links:

Farrow and Ball’s Skimming Stone

Farrow and Ball’s Ammonite

Farrow and Ball’s Elephants Breath

Dorset's Delicious Bits

Turnworth In May – A Dorset Date For Your Diary

Why have I never blogged about this before? Sorry, not helpful. I’ll start at the beginning.

There is a little, tiny hamlet nestled at the base of Okeford Hill called Turnworth. It is made up of only a few collection of houses, a church and a phone box. Surrounding this ‘metropolis’ are fields and trees, hills and grassy banks. It’s the sort of place where everyone knows and takes care of one another.

Sound good?

Turnworth holds an annual fete which celebrates all things to do with springtime and quintessential village life and they would really like you to join them.

Turnworth in May – Sunday 28th May – 11 am until 5 pm

DT11 0EE

Turnworth in May

You can have a wander around the village, have a peek into the vegetable gardens, stroll over people’s lawns if open to the public (these will be clearly signposted).  Take a moment in the church where Thomas Hardy stood and look at the flower arrangements.

There are also plenty of things to tempt you… such as a range of delicious home-made cakes, jams and preserves…

marmalade

… some of this year’s stock, ready for purchase …

…and just look at these… too cute!

crochet teddies

crochet emojis

… crochet emoji keyrings and teddies …

I have already got my eye on a few of these bags and doorstops which will be on sale. So you’ll have to race me…

handmade bag

handmade bag2

crochet doorstop

There’ll be lots of easy parking and everyone in the village will be out to help and point you in the direction of the things that will interest you.

Shall we make a date to see each other there?

Actually, if you think you see me – with armfuls of bags and jams probably – please come and say hi! I love those “Hey, you’re the Dorset Finca” moments! xx 

 

Home · Houseplants

My Top 5 Easiest Houseplants To Care For

The weather is warming, the days are longer and (hopefully) sunnier. It is always this time of year that encourages me to bring more greenery inside. However, I have got to the point where I don’t really want to be looking after oodles of plants and worrying about every brown leaf or patch of dry soil. I need an easier life with my plants.houseplants

So after a bit of trial and error, I have come up with my top 5 houseplant choices. They are in the top spots due to their price, their level of need and their inability (so far) to wither away into a brown twiggy mess.

Here’s number 1:

succulent in copper pot

… a little green succulent in a copper pot …

Perfect, on trend and actually artificial! It looks great on our coffee table and I don’t need to worry about watering it and leaving watery marks on the wood. I absolutely love this little guy.

Number 2:

kentia palm

… the Kentia Palm …

A beautiful flashback to the 20s when they were all the rage in people’s parlours. I’ve had this plant for about 3 years and so far, I’ve not had to repot it yet. It is happy being in most areas of the house and I love it’s jungle-like personality.

If you want a statement plant – then this is the one for you!

Number 3:

aloe in window

… aloe vera …

The best kitchen companion. It loves a sunny window and doesn’t really mind if you forget to water it. The best bit is that the juice from inside the leaves is wonderful at treating skin injuries, like burns. You just have to snap off a twig and rub it on!

Number 4:

livistona rotundifolia

… Livistona Rotundifolia …

Another wonderfully easy-going plant. I bought this one in Ikea about a year ago to jolly up the office. Again, not one to need copious watering or fussy light conditions. The only downside is that this plant has spines running up its stems so care needs to be taken when moving it about. Currently, he’s sitting in this beautiful beaded basket – which I absolutely adore!

Finally, number 5:

cactus

… micro cactus …

This was totally an impulse purchase! I was actually shopping for glasses (the drinking kind) as Mr D-F seems to get through quite a lot. I often here a call from the kitchen with ‘oh no, I’ve only gone and broken another one!’

As I was browsing through tumblers and water glasses, I saw these cute little cacti. Totally fake but utterly cool. This one needs no care whatsoever but nevertheless, sits happily in the bathroom, spreading its joy.

Links:

Succulent in Copper Pot

Kentia Palm 

Aloe Vera

Livistona Rotundifolia

Mini Cactus

Oh no! The succulent is now showing as out of stock!! I have had a search and you can get some similar ones here in cute white ceramic looking containers – they would look great in a group.

Dorset's Delicious Bits

A Dorset Deal – Free Pizza and Food Offers

Hello my friends! I have been contacted this week about two exciting new restaurant openings in Bournemouth.  They are especially exciting as the restaurants are offering huge discounts and even free food in their first few days of opening their doors.

I’m not going to be able to make it over there in time to make good use of this, so please go in my stead and fill up on deliciousness.

So… the details…

Margherita

… picture courtesy of Franco Manca Pizza …

Neapolitan pizza pioneer Franco Manca has recently launched its new pizzeria in Bournemouth. There are 200 pizzas that will be given out each day (this is based on a lovely Italian tradition of celebrating new customers by giving out free pizzas).

This offer is only available for today (Sunday 14th May) and tomorrow – so get down there and fill up on some Margherita!

greek food

… picture courtesy of The Real Greek

The Real Greek restaurant is offering:

50% off all Main Menu food on Monday 15th & Tuesday 16th May, dine in only.
25% off all Main Menu food Wednesday 17th & Thursday 18th May, dine in only.
They’ve just let me know that they are now fully booked for reservations, but they have plenty of space for people to walk in without a booking. The more the merrier!
Let me know if you manage to make it to any of these great new places and what you think. I’ll be thinking of you enjoying all of the great food.
Speak soon x
Projects

My Make Updates

Hello to you! I hope you are having a lovely Easter weekend and are looking forward to a leisurely Bank Holiday.

I was determined to use this time to get my bag finished (I talked about beginning this project in this post) and as I’m am still learning to sew properly, I was prepared that each stage was going to take much longer than anticipated – which it did, oh yes.

The first priority, was to clear a space on my table so that I wasn’t going to knock pots of pins, scissors or anything else off the edge. I learnt this lesson from a little accident that I had earlier on in the week. Picking up pins? Not fun!

Dorset Finca workspace

I was quite impressed that the hound didn’t pay any attention whatsoever to the sewing machine. He usually wants to seek out and attack anything that makes a mechanical metal whirring noise. We’ve managed to get past the ironing board issue (massive sigh of relief) – creeping upstairs to do some secret ironing when he was having a sleep seemed a little ridiculous! The hoover, let’s not even talk about that and the rotary washing line is now living in the shed as Young Sir thought that it was only there to upset him. Obvs.

Sorry, I digress. Anyway – good boy for loving the sewing machine. I spent a few days pinning, pressing, tacking and sewing, which finally resulted in:

Dorset Finca Bag

A finished bag, complete with pocket.

Yay! I’m so pleased with it! The pattern and instructions are from Lauren Guthrie’s book, which you can find here. The main fabric I bought from Hansons Fabrics and the fabric I used for the bias binding, I had in my stash. It has cute little flowers on it, which I felt really worked with the feel of the large pattern of the main bag.

I chose to leave out the button fastening on the front pocket. Yes, I was a bit scared of attempting my first buttonhole but the main reason was that the fabric was quite thick at this point with all of the hemming and binding. I was sure that I was going to make a complete mess trying to get through all of those layers.

I’m hoping that I’ll find lots of good uses for this bag, especially as I am planning to make another one (possibly without a pocket), but enough bags for now… my next project will be cushions. Gulp.

What is currently on your making table? x

 

 

Home · Projects

Making Way For A New Creative Obsession

Hello my lovely friends! How are you? I hope you’ve been able to spend time outside in the recent beautiful sunshine.

I had a wonderful plan of getting some crochet and crafty bits done outside with a pot of tea, but unfortunately there was a bit of a wind and my yarn, needles and everything else kept being swept up – which spoilt my romantic vision slightly!

As you know, the Finca has been a hive of creative, crochet activities for a few months and I have been loving getting stuck into commissions and designing new bits for the Etsy shop.  Alongside this, my need to explore other creative avenues has been fired up again… I think it got to a point where I realised I had been doing nothing but feverishly crocheting for weeks and weeks, without any sort of balance.

Once I realised this, I began hunting around for other projects that I could have a go at. Yesterday, I put the finishing touches on an old family ottoman seat that I now have in the bedroom and loved every minute of the renovation.

My other new obsession, which I have been dabbling in is…

First StepsIntoSewing

… sewing!

I know that I have made things before, but to be perfectly honest, there was never any finesse to my end results. It was more of a trial and error kind of thing.  There are so many possibilities for homewares and dressmaking that I just can’t achieve with crochet. I was getting down about not being able to make certain things until I gave myself a shake and told myself that I could learn!

My dreams are now currently filled with stunning fabrics, bags, cushions, quilts, A-line skirts and broderie tops and I am being very tough on myself and ensuring that I learn all of the skills step-by-step, practising them until I have got them just right.

learn to sew by Lauren Guthrie

One of the things that I have realised is that I learn best when I have time to mull things over at my own pace and after a lot of research I decided to buy Lauren’s book above. Apart from a selection of progressive projects that all looked appealing, I liked the way Lauren set out the skills sections. There are clear images and every step has been clearly explained. Her approach is much more welcoming than daunting – which I really appreciated!

Today, I’m hoping to finish making the pocket of a bag (which is one of her first suggested beginner’s projects) and I hope to have the whole thing finished in a day or two. I already have my eye on a few Sew Over It patterns… but I better not get too carried away!

I’d be very grateful if you have any great sewing suggestions: patterns, books, fabric shops – I’d love to hear!

Have a great rest of the weekend. x