Smelly Candles – Juliette At Home

Summer Pudding

Summer Pudding

A quick note to tell you I can’t stop sniffing my hallway.

These scented candles by Juliette At Home are incredible. They give off a rich, but not overpowering, aroma whether lit or not (I find some candles don’t seem to smell unless they just been blown out). The options are based around old fashioned English nostalgia; Lemon Drizzle, Butterscotch Sundae, Cucumber Sandwiches!

It was a touch choice between Summer Pudding and Fresh Cut Grass, but this weather has made me long for Spring so Fresh Cut Grass it was. It even came with a recipe for homemade strawberry jam on the label.

They’re £15 online or, while stocks last, on sale for £9 at the South Bank Centre shop. Go, go go!

Crafty Fox Market

I woke up on Sunday with the sun shining through the windows of our new flat. I sat on the sofa in my pyjamas drinking tea, eating toast and watching As Time Goes By whilst birds flitted round the garden.

It would have been impossible to tear myself away had it not been for the call of the Crafty Fox Market in Brixton.

Crafty Fox Autumn Market Webflyer

I arrived at The Dogstar around 2.30pm worrying that stock would be low as the weekend drew to a close, but the tables were all still overflowing with crafty goodness.

My first stop was with Jill, whose stunning designs I’d already bought several times before in the form of greeting cards. I very quickly handed over my money for three beautiful bird prints. My new flat is already low on wall space so they currently adorn the top of our wine rack. Nice eh?

Jill

We’d just bought a day bed for the spare room, which clearly needed softening up, so next I visited the very cute Pygmy Cloud for one of their mountain cushions, a rain and cloud garland, and then Tick Tack Toe for a bicycle cushion. Ikea furniture never looked so good.

IMG_2282

A few weeks ago on Twitter I saw the offer of a free letterpress taster with the lovely and talented Rachel from Pricklepress, which I swiftly signed up to.

Rachel showing how it's done.

Rachel showing how it’s done.

The Pricklepress selection

The Pricklepress selection

 

The process is actually more simple than I thought it would be (for one colour anyway), and just fiddly in a sort of satisfying way, but of course you need the talent to come up with new designs which, unfortunately, I lack. I struggled just to think of what to put on my free postcard. Which I shan’t even show here. Still, it hasn’t stopped me watching a load of Adana Letterpress machines on eBay!

After my lesson I slowly made my way out. I didn’t sample the tea and cake, though it all looked delicious, and I was sorely tempted to buy more loot when I spotted the delicate jewellery on Oh My Clumsy Heart’s stall. I was strong.

I’d also missed out on buying fantastic jewellery from Kate Rowland (her Breaking Bad inspired brooches are on my birthday wish list) as she was only at the market on Saturday. I recommend checking her designs out.

 

The Dogstar Brixton

 

Crafty Fox Market will be back at the Dogstar in Brixton on the 7th and 8th of December for Christmas themed shenanigans. Keep up with their movements on Twitter.

 

Ode to Oliver Jeffers

How to draw a penguin.

How to draw a penguin.

Oliver Jeffers is my favourite illustrator and children’s writer. I love his use of shadow, shapes and, more than anything, I love his humour.

The Heart And The Bottle

The Heart And The Bottle

I discovered his book The Heart and The Bottle whilst visiting the Tate Modern (and trying not to buy everything in the gift shop). I stood amongst the bustling tourists and read it cover to cover. And I cried.

Once there was a girl who was full of wonderment at how the world worked. She shared all her dreams and excitement with her father, who always had the answer to every question. That is until one day when his chair was empty, not to be filled again – how would she find the meaning of life now? 

My father had died the previous year, and reading this beautifully simple story of how a little girl came to feel love and joy again after loss was the kind of gentle therapy I hadn’t expected to find when I picked up a brightly coloured children’s book. And that softly optimistic storytelling is what makes his books so wonderful.

I now have the picture above hanging in my study. I even have the necklace by Digby & Iona that I wear like a good luck charm.  I’m quite the fangirl.

When I first saw his picture I was a bit confused to find out he’s young and handsome. It proves I imagine most illustrators to be old and pale with gnarled hands from staying indoors, bent over notebooks turning their heads inside out.

This month he is speaking at The SouthBank Centre in An Evening With Oliver Jeffers (sadly now sold out), and exhibiting his more adult works in Nothing To See Here at the Lazarides Gallery near Tottenham Court Road. The exhibition will run from the 13th of September – 3rd of October. Maybe I’ll see you there!

oliverjeffers-gillespie