Tuesday, 31 January 2012

January is nearly gone.

January is nearly gone and actually in a bit of a blur. This month has been a lovely month for us. It is when we reflect and plan ahead - it allows us time to freshen up and rethink.....  

The girls have been really busy in the Antiques cleaning some beautiful pieces of silver and treasures.

Gail and Sharon here are busy with detailed silver cleaning. Its good to have a giggle while working ! especially when  you need to concentrate so much. We have such lovely customers who are always complimenting us on how clean and shiny everything is.  

Just as work has begun on these pieces, each one takes a lot of time and patience to get them looking their best, below shows one of them all sparkly.

We have worked hard  to buy some very quirky pieces for you, this is one of the best things about vintage and antique, you never really know what you will find .... each piece is then so special and has a little story to go with it.

Look at this wonderful 19th century sewing stand with original silks, its a real collectors piece and very lucky to find.

Art Deco Bureau, I just love the wonderful shape and colours of the wood.

Another treasure.... a very sweet Heart mirror.  I love it.

All of these are so individual  and now one off finds. This chandelier is such a wonderful shape and twinkles beautifully.

Things have been pretty hectic round here over the few weeks with the interiors show and spring fair just round the corner. These are such busy shows and our poor feet are worn out by the end, but they are very exciting. Its wonderful to see so much variety of stock and  we get to choose new things for us in the centre. Its like Christmas shopping all over again......

               Kate Hamilton Hunter locally handmade jewellery, Kate has a real delicate and beautiful style, we have sold her jewellery for a few years now, she is wonderful at creating new styles and her use of colour.

And don't forget Valentines day, if your looking for ideas  come and have a look at our gifts  from the traditional hearts to the unusual. The chefs are also busy planning a special menu for the week of Valentines. This worked really well last year  with lots of people  coming out to celebrate and enjoy themselves with us throughout the week. Any way more to follow on this once we have choosen our menu... 

As always thank you for reading and we hope you you a little of what we have been up to here.  Until next time - take care.
Janet, Adrian and all the team xxx

Sunday, 8 January 2012

New Year and January brings a clear mind.......

December came and went in a bit of a whirl, with Christmas being such a busy time for all. We had a wonderful one, its the one time in the year that we make a real effort to send time together as a family and all the staff have a few days off to catch up with their loved ones.  As far as New year is concerned I have never been a big one for resolutions and empty promises. I really prefer to focus on whats important in the future and be positive.

Life goes by so quickly that sometimes its nice to just take a minute and look at what matters, we always come back to the same thing which is family, friends and work. Its the balance that is the tricky bit.  With New year gone and the decorations away I love to have a clear mind, start to think about the year ahead and get inspired for some changes. This doesn't have to be big, maybe a good sort out at home,  declutter a draw or two or perhaps think of all the things we want to do in the coming months.

For work we start to think again of new stock, visits to the NEC, building  relationships with new suppliers and meeting our existing ones again.  Finding something exciting for the antiques and vintage side of our work is continuously on going but the thrill  of a New year always gives you an extra push.

This beautiful George 111 1820 oak corner cabinet has just been restored and is waiting to be put up on a wall. This will look stunning in someones home ready to be loved again.

Before Christmas we were given a fabulous book, cooking with vegetables, less sugar and no fat  - so this week I had a little play and made some fat free almond and strawberry muffins. Oh they are delicious, from then I made apple and cinnamon and raspberry with chocolate chips (which was cheating with the chocolate but its OK now and again). All of these have courgettes in and really are so light and tasty you would never know. In fact tried them out on a some friends and our children - they went down really well and no one guessed !!. That to me is a good result. We already have the lemon & Almond cake as a regular and Carrot cake which has also changed to the healthier recipe, which you may remember form earlier blogs.
More baking to come I think - we will be trying out more recipes and seeing what other healthier cakes we can come up with - but of course we will keep the ever so popular ones we already bake.

Great to read in the "You" magazine Emma Bridgewater cake tins still as popular as ever. We have a great range here.
Well I think its time to say good bye again. Hope you enjoyed our blog and will visit us again soon.

                                           Love Janet, Adrian and all the Team xxx