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21 Jan

Well Hello Wednesday … I’ve been doing some tea break window shopping today continuing to get inspiration for when we tackle redecorating the house.

I thought I would share with you a few of my favourite window shopping finds once again in a Window Shopping Wednesday post.

So tea in hand let me share with you.

I do love Anthropologie.

These measuring cups appeal to the love of ‘gold’ embellishment I’ve developed. With their cute little gold speckled shells.


Continuing with Anthropologie.

The romanticist in me also likes this mirror.


Alas I don’t think the walls in our home would even hold such a mirror, let alone having the right wall to command such a mirror.

Ooo this rug would look lovely in the same imaginary house as the above mirror.


An Edwardian town house perhaps?

Moving on while hunting light fittings down I’ve been quiet impressed with BHS.

I’m totally materialistically glum about the fact we are saving not spending as I had to pass up a very nice light fitting earlier in the sales from BHS, but now look at this lovely bed spread reduced to £45 (I would want to see the quality for £45, still it says cotton)


I wouldn’t use it as a bedspread I would use this as a Garden/Camping Blanket to snuggle under the stars on summer evenings.

I feel a traitor to Winter thinking about Summer. Im happy with snuggly winter, with hot chocolate and frosty mornings.
If only I could shop for some snow !


Blog & Life 2015: Out With The Old.

6 Jan

I am now entering my 3rd year of blogging.


My blog meets none of the blogging criteria of a successful blog.

But it’s my blog and a pleasure still to me as I never intended to become a ‘read blog’ nor still do I.
I have always used it as my personal muse to find the “good in everyday”.

In saying that I do however like the fact that others do pop, have a read and leave messages. This was a pleasure I never expected to have – so Thank You to those that do, despite my slack posts, poor spelling & grammar and somewhat dull wafflings.


As mentioned ‘The Blogging Criteria’:

One of these blogging criteria recommendations is regular blog posts – fail one.

A second being combine blog with other social media – fail two.

I’ve had a huge gap in blog posts and twitter, Instead Ive been found over on IG. I’ve found IG just the right amount of social media to fit in with my schedule for the later part of 2014. But New Year – New Schedule.

I’ve organised and sorted many aspects of the HAF household over the past few months and one area that remains a shamble of miss matching posts and WIP is my blog. I feel I should give a little TLC to the poor thing which is serving me so well.

So first out with the old…

There are 3 topics which I have covered in posts over the past 2 years that have come to an end for me at least.

CPSH; Craft Photo Scavenger Hunt: I really enjoyed taking part in this. There are lots of monthly photo taking variations out there but I enjoyed the personal nature of this as it was a small group which I could actually enjoy everyone’s posts each month. Unfortunately I joined this at the end of its life really the original organiser had passed the torch on and lives got busy and the group naturally and amicably fizzled as far as I am aware.
So this topic is no longer a feature on my blog.

BHBC & CCC: ; Beaters Hut Bakers Club & Clandestine Cake Club: Again two things I tremendously enjoyed taking part in and pushing the grey baking cells and skills. But alas baking is not always easy for me as it requires a full good week as I have to shop & bake, then commit to a date a month in advance when I have no idea how I will feel, leaving me feeling pressured and letting people down. Which means I can not take part unfortunately.
But both local groups still continue successfully and with some very hard work of 2 lovely groups- much recommend.

Crafty Creatives #CC: I stopped my Crafty Creatives boxes as to be honest I was getting a little bored of the format and I didn’t have the inkling to either do the crafts or the time. As I stopped though the format changed and I was given the option to test the new format but I declined – stupidly. As I do quite like the look of the new boxes. This maybe something in future I choose to do again.
I have however in its place taken more day classes in crafts which I have greatly enjoyed too and there will continue to be blog posts about.

Things I’ve not quite finished, Blog WIP’s …

A-Z of Me: I started this with my blog essentially and haven’t got past ‘E’.
So *ahem* it is in my blog planner; oh yes my organiser has one [*Tick* one criteria of a successful blog – have a planner- I just have to use it haha], so 2015 will see more of The A-Z of Me.

WSW; Window Shopping Wednesday: I haven’t done a WSW for over a year.
My break was due to Window Shopping often turns into shopping and with the Wedding I had to resist temptation to house shop and concentrate on the Wedding.
Our Wedding didn’t actually involve that much shopping. I had a clear picture in my mind and found or made what I wanted with a little help from Family & Friends.
Instead of shopping a lot of pinning happened and you can still see all of our Blush, Gold & Navy themed wedding inspiration on my Pinterest boards [Serotiny_HAF].
One day I will share our amazing day on the blog.

I Quit Sugar; The ‘diet’/Life style of quitting sugar: Well I lasted the first 5 weeks of full detox then had my Bridal Shower & Hen Party.
A Bridal Shower Afternoon Tea Party & A Best Friend who is a cake goddess and ‘I didn’t quit sugar’. I slowly slipped down the slippery slope again.
In saying this we do not quiet have the same amount of sugar as before as I have never restocked some sugary condiments and such like. I have also continued to switch to no sugar brands of certain foods. My snacking is slightly different too I switched some snacks to things like rice cakes & nut butters and this was always the area which was a high sugar concern in my diet.
I hope in the new year to attempt this again as I did feel some benefits.


So that’s a summery of the blog tidy & round up.

Blog Aims 2015

I aim to blog at least twice a week for now and increase my twitter communications again as I miss the interaction & knowledge to be found on twitter. I’ve found many a fab company or recommendation on twitter – not to mention twittering peeps becoming none virtual friends.

I aim to blog once a week on a positive good in the week for me, this could be snail mail, baking, a craft etc.

The second post I aim to do is continue to take part in Jocelyn at The Reading Residence, Word of the Week. I hope to make the link up most Fridays – Sundays.

The Reading Residence

My other occasional Blog Aim is to post about our Geocaching progress and have a bit of a catch up with this.


From time to time I hope to increase posts with participating with other blog link ups as I have done in the past.

I think it’s all looking ship shape over here and ready for 2015 and a 3rd Blogging Year.

I look forward to seeing what the new year brings.



17 Jul

I’ve been being good of late hence the absence of WSW, as window shopping often leads to actually buying and we need to actually save for big pieces of furniture etc.

But today I’ve had a little looksie around there are some Sales on at the moment.

Cath Kidston – I was very good I have my eye on a bag ~swoon~
And Occa Home have a upto 50% Sale including Greengate products.
I actually have already purchased from CK, 2 mugs and from Occa Home the turquoise green egg cups I had my eye on & the cut glass wine glasses from GG.

Most of my finds today were over at Anthropologie.


I Love this vibrant yellow camping lamp, I think it would look lovely in the craft room, let alone ‘Glamping’.

And with my Rabbit Obsession I could in vision this in the craft room.


I liked this door knob/handle in Green, at £1.95 it wouldn’t break the bank – would it ?? But then I’ve no where to use it at the moment.


They also do this porcelain rabbit one as well …


And this one …


I know a dog & 2 kittens which would love this “Sumutra Cabana” in this heat.
I really liked the colourful Bohemian feel about the fabric.


Finally a window shopping session for me wouldn’t be complete without a browse through Not On The High Street

I am still looking for the perfect ceramic jug. This isn’t what I had in mind but I do adore this fella.


That’s just a few things that caught my eye today while enjoying the glorious sunshine.



12 Jun

Felt Felt Felt

I have caught a felty bug.


The little sweetie above is from Suyika on Etsy.

In August I’m going to a felting course at The Sheep Shop and I’m getting more and more interested in felting as the weeks go on. I am tempted to take another course before then actually.

Little felted objects keep catching my eye and I have been looking today at things I could make.

I’m not sure what the correct terminology is for sewing from felt rather than felting; if that makes any sense. Im still on a felt learning curve.

The felting course is from fluffy felt that you use special needles for.
Where as today I’ve been looking at sewing from shop brought felt sheets – if that describes it more?

And I thought I would share with you my virtual window shopping finds while I was getting inspiration.

Firstly I came across this talented lady’s blog Bugs and Fishes .
Laura hand cuts & sews all of her beautiful pieces and has been featured in lots of the crafty publications.

Her blog is a great peruse, a mixture of her lovely work, day to day goings on and some wonderful free templates.

I would really like to have a look at Laura’s book:


And her next book is out in the Autumn:

*Images From Bugs & Fishes

This one I particularly like the look of.

Looking through Laura’s blog further I discovered she also sells her work, so I hot footed it over to her website. Lupin Handmade.

At this point Window Shopping turned into Actual Shopping. But you will have to wait and see what, I’m on a limited budget this month so I had to restrict myself- though Laura’s work is extremely reasonable.

But I will however show you some of Laura’s website goodies.


I adore this Forget-me-not brooch but it looks like so did lots of other people as its sold out.


This little chap is a cutie too.

I can highly recommend if your Window Shopping or Actual shopping checking Laura’s sites out.

Leading on from this I did my usual Etsy searching and was amazed by the next lady’s Poppies.


This again looks like a completely different felt technique.

Roltinica, Felted Flowers and Accessories is run by a Russian Lady. Again some lovely products the poppy was my favourite.

This wasn’t how my search started although beautiful I’m not going to be making Poppies as good as that!

What I had in mind was more a mobile and tadah … What do you think to this lovely.


Super cute isn’t it.
It’s from Felt N Joy in sunny California.

How do people hand sew this well?! Note to my hands: Hands consider yourselves officially told off for lack participation in such projects.

I’m wondering if I could make a Hundred Acre Farm Animal mobile from felt? – watch this space.

Have fun Window Shopping.



29 May

Today’s window shopping involves crafts & hobbies.

For a while I’ve wanted to ‘Extreme Crochet’ or ‘Extreme Knit’.

A long time ago when I first joined Pinterest a large chunky knit rug caught my eye along with a large chunky crochet rug.


Think how comfy that is on your tootsies and bare feet.



I tried to hunt down and source the yarn needed in the UK but at the time I had no luck and to import from America with the additional Taxes made for super expensive wool and I just couldn’t justify it, (one Skein is $153.00 without tax the pattern takes two Skeins). My search continued when I visit Canada last year but alas I had no luck there either

So I kind of put the project on the back burner.

But it seems extreme knitting and crochet has taken off all over now;
Especially Foot Stall Poufs/Cushions. These in the picture are from Christien Meinderstsma.


*Christien Meindertsma

I like these and despite them becoming a common fad I thought it might be quite a quick and easy, fun project.

Again I started to look at sourcing the yarns and my interest in Extreme Crochet & Knitting has been ignited once more.

Thus Todays WSW is Extreme Knitting & Crochet products.

Tools of the Trade

Lets start with hooks & needles:

The nicest selection I’ve found yet supplied in the UK is from Art of Yarn.


They are wood rather than plastic which I prefer and come in Hook size 19mm and 24mm. Which is also some of the larger I found with size gauges.

The Knitting needles are also wooden on this site and they have straights & cables. The gauges of the needles are 24mm & 27mm but they do different length needles.


And for darning in those ends …


Or Extreme Tapestry/Sewing.
(One I haven’t looked into yet)

The Big Stitch Knit Rug


This was my first extreme knitting love spotted on Pinterest. It is on the Purlbee website.

It uses 2 skeins of Bag Smith’s Big Stitch Alpaca Yarn which at $153.00 a Skein without Tax is slightly over being justifiable.
Though a decent rug especially as beautiful as this does cost in the £100’s, it’s just not high on the agenda for us at this moment.


It sounds & looks like beautiful, soft yarn to make a rug with its 70% alpaca, 15% wool and 15% nylon.

Dream a Little Dream …

Knitted Poufs

I did a Ravelry search for Crochet & Knitted Poufs and found this pattern: Puff Daddy From a Norwegian company called Pickles .


The Yarn they used for these is Pickles Fat & Happy .


Pickles Fat & Happy Yarn seems to be a happy medium of gorgeous wool, more reasonable tax/shipping and over all price at roughly $90.

AND they do some lovely colours.


I really like the idea of a bright yellow foot stall.

Or how about an alternative yarn to make the rug?

It is a 80% wool, 20% polyamid mix giving it a lovely ‘knitted’ texture with added strength.

I have also notice Amazon have started to stock The Aussie Brand, Hoooked Zpagetti Yarn, making it easier than dealing with calculating taxes etc. As well as a few other UK websites I’m as yet to investigate further.



Hoooked Zpaggetti Yarn an elasticated cotton yarn and is available in some funky bright colours & even patterns.

Hoopla yarn is a UK company who produces yarn from Jersey Fabric. This also comes in some fantastic colours my favourite is this ‘Aqua Source’.


I’m undecided on the cotton & jersey yarns would be suitable for a foot stall, as though they say no stretch would they go flat after a while and the stall loose it shape?? I don’t know.

So at the end of this WSW I’m left pondering as to what yarn to try or just to try both.
Any advice?



25 Apr

(On a Thursday- do excuse but I was really very tired last night)

A bit of an eclectic mix this week.

The Kitchen

I had not been on the website Made in Design for a while so thought I’d have a looksie and though this Giant Pencil Sharpner carrot peeler won’t be joining our kitchen, I found my younger student self liking it. I think it could also be fun for children.


I love camping and the Glamping (look the term up if not familiar) side of it. So all my Glamping camping stuff matches and is a bit on the unnecessary eccentric side for REAL campers (I have real camping stuff too for Free Camping or Quick trips – I also add I won’t buy an electric hook up and to me this still makes me a true camper while Glamping haha; I’m digressing)

Back to shopping …
I spotted this handy chap



Again on Made in Design , I have a whisk in my camping kitchen equipment, but it’s a nuisance the whisk’y bit has to be in the right place for the lid on the box to close. This is ingenious !! And I will be purchasing !!

What next … Oh yes …

The Bathroom

I think I’m regressing to my younger days this week as another thing that won’t be in our home but caught my eye, were these toilet rolls



Made in Design have them in Neon Pink, Yellow, Blue, Red & Black.
Funky hey.

It made me chuckle too, as in our younger years, every year my friends and I would go to a mobile holiday home owned by a parent and we (I’ve no idea why, I guess so you didn’t run out) used to have named toilet rolls and you would use your own – if only we had a different colour each back then !


The Office/Mr S

A Magnetic Table. Would Mr S remember to put his keys here?? I doubt it he already has a key bowl in the hall & on his desk, and they only go there because I put them there. Different to a bowl and would hold pocket change too.
I’m quite liking this.


I had found some really cool stuff for the craft room but I’ve lost the links!
So will have to get searching again for next week.



Window Shopping Wednesday

16 Apr

I didn’t get much chance to Window Shop today.

But I have recently shown you my new bunny friend Violet.


Since finding out that she is made by a company called Maileg I had a look at their website.

They do some really gorgeous kids and some home ware products.
These are just a few of my favourites.


The rest of Violet’s bunny family, Maileg do tiny tiny bunnies all the way up to Giant 1meter tall bunnies.

They have a selection of other adorable cuddlies.



As well as home ware such as serviettes,



and seasonal decorations.


They also have a ‘paper’ page, posters, stationary etc



And finally they do children’s dinning ware.
Of course the plate I loved most was one with a bunny.


If you get a tea break pop over and dream yourself.


Window Shopping Wednesday

10 Apr

I didn’t get much time to window shop today but while cleaning/tidying I started to think about Mr S’s office and how my plan was actually based on what mostly I liked more than a boy sorry MAN retreat.
I’d planned a bit of a travel bohemian feel for the study and though Mr S would be ok with this I think actually I should design it around him.
Less Bohemian more modern/minimal.

I had a quick tea break and squiz at the old ‘t’nternet, not forgetting flapjack for brain food.

I hadn’t been on Not On The High Street for a while so thought this a good a place as any to start looking for office ideas.

I think the idea of a map will stay, Mr S liked this idea and we have already purchased a large map ready to frame and cork board back.
But Not On The High Street have plenty of map inspiration.

Take this cork board map:


And these cute little map postcards:


I particularly like this Australia one with the Kangaroo…


Slight distraction…


Bunny Rabbit Scissor Set more for me than Mr S, well ok defiantly me than Mr S.

These bookends are nice:


I pinned this desk tidy from another online shop a while back but here it is again on Not On The High Street:


At this point I made a little google search and found Made in Design ; not a site I’ve visited before.

Ooo Mr S will like the quirkiness of this paper weight/doorstop


… A man can be allowed his dreams.

Another wooden desk tidy:


In conclusion I think from my quick tea break contemplations that the Office will have the map still but will incorporate wooden objects and leather storage. Very manly~ I just have to remember to keep it minimal to appeal to Mr S.

Why not ask Mr S what he wants well I know what Mr S will say…
“You know what I like, it’s your job to decorate”

My mans so easy going.


Window Shopping Wednesday

3 Apr

Well today in my virtual window shopping I got a bit distracted, it was more crafty than true shopping.

I’ve got a bit of a ‘thing’ for collecting shells and pebbles from places I visit. In fact more of a shells and pebble obsession.

I currently display them in various rooms in jars, on shelves and ledges.



(These are currently in the craft room… Excuse the shelving unit that needs a makeover)

These slates are from Galloway, Scotland and were once roof tiles now used as our coasters in the kitchen.


(Again another item in our house that needs a make over the little bargain table ~ Mr S liked it in wood though so a little more persuasion needed)


This shell was from the dinner of an illusive Otter while on holiday on Eilean Shona, Scotland.

Anyway you have the idea lots of stones and shells in our house.

So while window shopping today I had brought to my attention something I did as a little girl … Paint stones and shells.
Today has drawn me to look into others obsessions with pebbles & shells and what else other than painting can be done with them; people have whole Pinterest boards.

People crochet them…


People wrap them in yarn


People put transfers on them …


People use Sharpies on them…


People put quotes on them…


People paint them still…


I like these motif designs on them…


I’ve also had my own inspiration of adding Gold leaf or Natural Dying them.
Lots and lots to think about.

In addition to pebbles today Purlbee caught my eye with this delightful Sheepy!


Felted Bunny (Rabbits another obsession)


And this lovely baby blanket


I also had a bit of an Etsy trawl and found this calendar .


I like the idea for the craft room it would a great size to doodle on and use embellishments such as washi tape stamps and stickers on.



So that’s all for Window Shopping Wednesday this week a quiet first week back after the last couple of Wednesdays off.


Window Shopping Wednesday 1

13 Mar

After an appalling nights sleep well there was no night time sleep about it, possibly an hour if that before the dog woke me up needing to go out, followed by I’m so loanly cry’s.

From 2-4am I was awake on the sofa with 2 kittens and The Dog.
Parrot Cat wrapped round my head, The Princess snuggled right up under my chin and The Dog as close to her as he could get and though there was no chance of sleeping like this it made me smile as we have been waiting weeks for moments like this with all the pets in harmony.

At some points we wondered if it would ever happen. We had reached a bit of a plateau with The Dog and Kittens establishing their boundaries and limits but this last week further developments have been made.

Kisses have been exchanged, The Princess has been making the effort to play with The Dog and The Parrot Cat has been eating out of the same bowl at the same time as The Dog.

To be fair the problem hasn’t really been The Dogs fault more they were speaking in different languages at first and now each has learnt a bit of ‘pigeon dog’ and ‘pigeon cat’ and things are progressing nicely. The Dog bless him has always been good with the Cats his just a little unpredictable for them.

This picture was taken the other day of them cleaning out the left overs


So back to bed I went at 4am with a cup of tea and managed to grab some Zzzz’s and wish Mr S a good day at work in my sleep.

But come 6am all pets were hungry and needed their breakfast so I obliged did my chores and then went to get a little more sleep.

When I woke up the day was not as I expected.



We had lots of lovely sunshine. So I sat doing my normal Wednesday Virtual Window Shopping enjoying the rays in the kitchen.

Today as well as home inspiration I got pottery inspiration.

I thought these ceramic butterflies from Retro Villa are sweet and could be used for home or gift decoration.


And also the same goes for these ceramic letters


Then I facing some more ironing. As I was ironing there was a tremendous noise and we were having a hail storm! Sun still shining.


The cloud formations were amazing afterwards unfortunately all I had was my phone camera as the proper camera had given up the ghost – time to replace. I could have snapped away all day with a proper camera. This picture doesn’t do it justice.


Mr S said that in the city once again they were having proper snow.

It’s Wednesday so Pottery tonight so this is where I leave you.


Never be within doors when you can rightly be without ~ Charlotte Mason


A girl and her garden :)



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