Wednesday, 21 September 2011

Bonne Maman jam jars

It was my birthday recently and my daughter bought me this wonderful book

Not only does it have wonderful recipes such as chicken, prawn and sweet potato curry, sizzling chilli and peach chicken, lemon and wild blueberry swirl cake, strawberry souffle, apricot mince pies etc but also great ideas on how to recycle the Bonne Maman jars. These are the most beautiful jars; a classic glass jar topped with a striking red gingham lid and just ideal for storing craft bits and cookery bits. There are some beautiful photos in the book showing you lots of ideas.

I think this is my favourite - just some sticky pads on the lids and stick the jars under your cupboards or shelves for some really handy extra storage space that you didn't even know was there!

I found this picture at iheartlinen along with some more great ideas

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Autumn is on its way

Summer feels like it is definitely over as the weather takes on a distinctly autumnal feel. I won't get much use out of these little ice cream bowls that I found in my local hardware shop, only a £1 each. Sadly, I will have to put them away for next year.

Saying that, I do love Autumn; the way the light changes and the trees seem to burn with glorious colour as nature prepares itself for winter. It is a real joy to walk the dogs and come home to a warming hot drink and a slice of homemade cake. I am going to give this pumpkin bread recipe a go. I have no idea where I can get a can of pumpkin puree from (any ideas?) but if I can't get it I can always cut a pumpkin in half, scoop out the seeds etc and bake if face down on a foil-lined baking sheet at 350deg for about 45 mins to an hour and when cool scoop out the flesh. Alternatively roast or boil cut pieces of pumpkin flesh, discarding the skin afterwards. A tin would be so much easier!

Pumpkins are my favourite vegetables for a number of reasons; their colour, their shape, carving them for Halloween and they are very versatile for cooking with. Earlier in the year we cleared a patch in the garden to grow some vegetables (for the first time).

I planted carrots, beetroots, lettuces, spring onions tomatoes and a pumpkin plant which grew extremely large but I have only had one pumpkin from it so far, of which I am very proud.

I know it looks more like a marrow but I promise you it is a pumpkin! I have put it in the lean-to to ripen off so I am hoping it will turn orange at some point. Better luck next year!! I think I may be better at making the clay variety.......

Tuesday, 6 September 2011

Last of the Summer Sun - Chipstead Fete

What a beautiful day it was on Saturday - we did our last outdoor pottery painting summer event at Chipstead Fete and the weather was glorious.

It is always a family affair.........

and this time we even took the dogs along.  Jess is the Jack Russell and Daisy (the black one) is a Jack Russell crossed with a toy poodle.She is now 7 months old and still very much a puppy but so adorable.

We had a large selection of bisque available to paint

including our new cup cake dinner plate which can be painted for any occasion

Thank you to all our customers who have painted with us this summer and we hope to see you all again soon. Please check our events page for a schedule of forthcoming events.

Monday, 5 September 2011

French Pottery - plenty of inspiration!

I hope everyone had a lovely summer break, we went to Biscarosse in France and had a very relaxing time. We had trips to the beach, the lake etc but I did manage to squeeze in a pottery visit or two much to my partner's annoyance! I took a lot of pictures to share with you as the colours are so vibrant and beautiful.  

I loved these chickens and nearly bought one but didn't as sadly I have nowhere to keep it.

This is an apple shaped planter for the garden

and a pear-shaped one, really unusual for the garden. 

I also really liked these butterflies, made to hang on a wall in the garden. There were three diffent sizes and beautifully painted.