Period Features: Victorian Family Mourning Hair Wreaths
The Victorians were a surprisingly emotional lot and when it came to death they liked to go to town with elaborate mourning rituals and fancy tombstones, like those left to us in Highgate Cemetery. Since it is Halloween I thought you might like to know about one custom you may n ...
Out and About: Halloween
Happy Halloween everyone – it’s time to party!
I am sure that anyone with young children will be busy carving their pumpkins
and putting the final touches on amazing costumes
plus some very spooky food.
But if you’re still looking for a party check ou ...
Garden Guru: Autumn Pruning
When and how to prune back plants and shrubs is often seen as a bit of a nightmare.
Don’t be afraid – there are some simple rules to follow which will make it easy – and dare I say it, even fun. As it is autumn you only have to tackle those plants which bene ...
What’s the Story? Alexandra Palace Railway Station
Just to get things straight at the start, I am not talking about the current Alexandra Palace Station which is active and well-used, no, this story is about that insignificant little building around the back of the Palace which today goes by the name of CUFOS.
I had heard peopl ...
Period Features: Butler Sinks
A good period style Butler sink has been on people’s must-have kitchen essentials list for a couple of decades now. If you’re thinking about getting one you might want to check this out: what’s the difference between a Belfast Butler and a London one?
A Butler ...
Out and About: Music, Chocolate & Fireworks
If you’ve nothing planned for the weekend how about mixing things up with this slightly eccentric line-up.
There’s all sorts of music on this saturdy in Crouch End, organised by musicians in aid of Oxfam. See the whole programme of events at: http://oxjamcrouchend. ...
Garden Guru: Time for the Turk’s Cap Lily
I’m not going to nag again about getting on and planting spring bulbs asap – I’m sure you’ve got your snowdrops, daffs and tulips covered – but have you thought of the fabulous Lilium martagon, otherwise known as the Turk’s Cap Lily?
Wednesday Moodboard: Tablescapes
When it comes to interior design David Hicks was once the name on everyone’s lips from royal palaces to the furthest reaches of the regions.
He was a controversial figure but he made mixing old and new, high art and the everyday, strong colour and bold geometrics, fashio ...
What’s the Story? A Hug from Amma
Have you heard of the hugging saint – Amma? She’s here at the moment in the Palm Court, Alexandra Palace, giving talks and an endless number of her famous hugs today and tomorrow.
I first came across her in Sainsburys Muswell Hill, when an elderly man behind me ...
Period Features: Ginger Jars
One of the first decorative objects I ever bought was a blue and white ginger jar from a jumble sale. It was missing its lid and was ordinary as these things go but, aged 10, the 1 shilling price tag was perfect in my eyes.
There are many serious collectors and then there are t ...
Out and About: Smile
We are celebrating World Smile Day today – invented by the creator of the smiley face symbol, Harvey Ball.
If you’re into knitting and sewing you’ll be smiling about the fantastic Knitting and Stitching Show on at Ally Pally at the moment and all weekend.
Garden Guru: Think of Pansies
When most other flowers are coming to the end of their stay with us pansies and violas are tough little Trojans that cheer up the gloomiest of winter days.
I love the origin of their name: mid-15c, from Middle French pensée “a pansy,” literally “thought,remem ...