Tea for Two and Two for Tea

Tea for Two and Two for Tea

Here we have a really charming Tea Cosy.

It’s beautifully hand embroidered in blue and white, with a rich navy velvet to the reverse.

To keep your little tea pot warm. Whilst your brew steeps.

How do you make your perfect cup of tea?

Warm the pot.
Pour hot water (not boiling, never boiling water), over the leaves.
Steep for 2 minutes if it’s red tea, up to 7 minutes if it’s green tea.
If you have milk:
Milk? How very dare you.
The milk goes in after and definitely not before.

And of course, if it’s loose leaf tea, which I certainly hope it is, because tea bags are just so infra dig, then once your cup is empty it’s time to read your leaves.
Tea leaf astrology.
Swirl the cup around, let the leaves settle, squint quite hard at the pattern remaining, and then using all your powers of imagination, turn the pattern into a shape you recognise.

Don’t pretend you haven’t done the same with clouds:

Dragons, Diamonds, Druids, Donkeys, Dentures, Dolphins, Doris Day.

All of life is there. In the bottom of your cup. Which must be Bone China – it goes without saying.

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April 14, 2014 · 7:17 pm

The Co-operative – here for you for life

I met a lady from far away, whom, whilst showing me her wares, (a cardboard suitcase oozing vintage scarves) whispered I should visit a market in a Northern town.

Two scarves (one polka dot polyester, one lilac silk) and 47 miles later I park here:

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Hope Mill. Or rather Hope Mi.l, according to the sign on the fir green door, not so much dark and satanic as dank and sagging.

The smell was overwhelming, growing stronger as I paced towards the bustle of the Market Hall.

Fish and Chip Shops. Attacking from three different angles. Enough vinegar to pickle the whole town.

Stalls set out in a square grid. Anything from armless Action Men to rampant bronze lions. With a great deal of CD’s, chipped plates and Chinese fakery in between. But it was good. Interesting. Very busy, and shouty. Lots of activity; banter, buying, bartering. I bought. Earrings, cufflinks and two bulbs of smoked garlic. I put back a Losol jug. Which I now regret of course.

It began to rain. I asked a woman with dreadlocks and creamy cappuccino skin to suggest a decent cafe.

And did she:

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The Bear. Deli downstairs, eatery upstairs via a staircase Scarlett O’Hara wouldn’t sniff at. Was once The Co op, when once the Co op stood for Caring and Sharing. Unlike now. Help yourself why don’t you?

Pink lemonade in a silly ballon and celeriac soup in a bowl with basil and bread like this:

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They like their chow in this Northern town. And they’re happy to share it.  The ‘Incredible Edible’ project plants orchards and vegetables in unused spaces around the town. For everyone to partake. Cherry trees in the car park, and flocks of herbs along the canal.

What a marvellous idea. Prettify brown sites, rally a community, eat your greens.

Simple. Cooperative.

 

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April 12, 2014 · 9:21 am

Secrets of the Vatican Vintage Visionaries

Secrets of the Vatican Vintage Visionaries

1950′s Italian micro mosaic ear clips. Yellow roses.
Yellow roses for friendship.

Micro mosaic jewellery can trace its roots back to The Vatican.

The recipe for the minute tesserae, or enamel shards used to make this magnificent jewellery is a closely kept secret in the Holy See.

Centuries ago, in order to preserve the magnificent frescoes, which were sadly deteriorating due to the pervading damp, mosaic techniques were investigated in order to replace the artworks.

28,000 tesserae colours were developed to accurately replicate most of the Basilica paintings. By 1770, nearly all of them had been successfully copied in mosaic.

Even now, tourists visiting St. Peter’s are often oblivious that the artworks they’re viewing are mosaic and not painted.

Decades later, these skills were transferred to those making souvenirs for the noble elite on the Grand Tour. The vignettes were usually of classical subjects, temples, and doves being most popular.

Fast forward to the middle of the last century and micro mosaic jewellery was being produced as gifts for tourists.

You can buy these gorgeous Holy earrings here.

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April 11, 2014 · 6:24 pm

Cheshire Cherry Blossom

Cheshire Cherry Blossom

“Rather than turning over a new leaf, prune your tree so that new leaves continue to blossom.”

Photograph taken this morning at Denzell Gardens in Cheshire.
Click on the photo for an interesting read about North West England’s heritage.

Let me know if you recognise the species… some kind of Cherry?

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April 9, 2014 · 7:44 pm

What rhymes with amethyst?

What rhymes with amethyst?

Not a lot apparently.
Only rather alarming looking words ending in …cyst.
So it’s hardly surprising that there is little in the literary canon about the good old amethyst.
It just isn’t poetic enough.
Let’s try another approach. Take a look at the etymology.
Oh dear.
From the Greek ‘amethustos’ meaning ‘sober’, the amethyst will guard against drunkenness.
Here then, is a beautiful amethyst necklace for the lush in your life, a lush not fond of poetry.

Oh, and the Lady at The Telegraph, loves all things purple, especially the amethyst. It is the gem to buy in 2014.

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April 8, 2014 · 8:43 pm

It was a Bright Cold Day in April, and the Clocks were Striking Thirteen

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Well, not quite, I mean it is a bright, cold day in April, but this beautiful wedding gown is the antithesis of 1984 dystopia.

Much more a utopian dress; blissful, heavenly, idyllic even.

1930′s Glamour springs to mind.
Elegance and femininity, think Jean Harlow and Greta Garbo. Ivory silk and chiffon.

It’s a couture dress by an English designer called Sophie English.

All very patriotic that.

It’s never been worn, but worry not, nothing awful befell the bride to be, it was made as a sample, and for a smidgeon of the cost you can look like a Hollywood Star on your Wedding Day.

Incidentally, the blog title is a favourite opening line of mine.

Along with… you know what I’m going to say don’t you…. #predictable:

‘it is a truth universally acknowledged….’

Fellow bloggers, what’s your favourite opening line?

 

4 Comments

April 7, 2014 · 11:32 am

Feeling Blue?

Feeling Blue?

These are lush.
And very bright.
Bright turquoise glass beads knotted as a necklace.

Maybe they’re more ‘Celeste’ – a bright sky blue. Or possibly ‘Pearl Mystique’ with a hint of teal.

Actually, I’m going for ‘Cerulean’.

Cerulean blue, first mentioned as a colour in 1590, derived from the Latin word ‘caelum’ meaning heaven or sky.

What do you think?

Anyway, this heavenly necklace doesn’t go back to 1590, but it is vintage.
And it can be yours, right here.

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April 6, 2014 · 10:28 am

If you want to get AHEAD, get A HAT

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As a follow on to an earlier post, this item of loveliness is also trending due to the popularity of a TV series.

Anybody heard of Downton Abbey?

Hats are in.

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Susannah Buxton, the former fashion designer for Downton, was nominated for an Emmy for costume design. The department is now run by her former assistant, Caroline McCall. According to Buxton, Downton Abbey clothes don’t strictly adhere to the period, but use the same aesthetic while trying to make Downton style attractive to modern audiences. She says it’s more a translation than historically accurate.

Ralph Lauren’s Fall 2012 show opened with the theme song of Downton Abbey. Models wore skinny plaid trousers and narrow cut blazers. Lauren’s spring show was more of a flouncy pastel affair suited to garden parties and formal dinners. And of course, where Mr Lauren leads, PoshPedlar follows.

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The hat I offer here is more Lady Mary than Dowager Countess, it is absolutely gorgeous.

Vintage caramel straw, with a faded rose corsage and delicate net to finish. Top quality, super condition.

Perfect for that summer wedding with cream trouser suit, in fact any shade of pastel will do.

Each episode of Downton costs £1 million to make. You can buy PoshPedlar’s hat for a lot less here.

 

 

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April 5, 2014 · 5:58 pm

A Tad Mad Men – Cocktails and Curves

A Tad Mad Men - Cocktails and Curves

Vintage clip on earrings. About 60 years old. From the 1950′s – 1960′s.

The good old days.

Beautifully made with cream and crystal clear glass bugle beads.

So if you’re a would-be Betty Draper, or maybe you just enjoy the nostalgia of vintage, and hanker after a time when drinking, smoking, misogynist bigots roamed the streets, these lovely earrings are for you.

“In May 2010, Miss Hendricks was voted “The Sexiest Woman Alive” by female readers of Esquire magazine. Two months later the size-14 actress, who plays the feisty secretary Joan Harris in Mad Men, was declared a role model by Lynne Featherstone, the UK Equalities Minister.
Criticising the “overexposure” of skinny models, which she said was causing a crisis in “body confidence” among young women, the Liberal Democrat minister declared: “Christina Hendricks is absolutely fabulous.
“We need more of these role models. There is such a sensation when there is a curvy role model. It shouldn’t be so unusual.”

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/health/healthnews/8290407/Mad-Men-star-Christina-Hendricks-sparks-rush-for-breast-implants.html

Cocktails and curves, and you can buy them by clicking on them!

3 Comments

April 4, 2014 · 5:36 pm

Pearls of Wisdom

Pearls of Wisdom

“Happiness is a by-product of an effort to make someone else happy.”

I am going to make you very happy with these gorgeous vintage daisy clip-on earrings.

Some people clean their pearls in salt water.
I like to swipe mine with a clean cloth lightly dipped in olive oil.

Occasionally, I roll my pearls over my forehead.
My make-up free forehead. Sounds bizarre. Works a treat.

The natural oils in skin bring out the lustre of the pearls.
Which is why pearls should be worn. They improve each time you wear them.

Pearl earrings widen your smile, and actually make your teeth look whiter.

What’s not to like?
Happy days.

Buy them here.

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April 3, 2014 · 7:21 pm