A holiday in Haworth

A couple of weeks ago we were feeling l̶a̶z̶y̶ adventurous so we decided to take the day off in the middle of the week and venture out for lunch. Yep, we're crazy freelancers and we love it. To be honest the weather was so good it felt like a waste sitting at home staring at a screen (not such a waste right now as it's bucketing it down...)

I can't really remember why we chose Haworth, it just seemed like a good idea at the time. Sadly the 2 or 3 places I'd been looking forward to trying were closed, but that didn't prevent us from stuffing our faces.

Started off with a milkshake, followed by a HUGE plate of nachos, followed by a healthy salad to restore the nutritional balance of my day.

It did get a bit chilly sitting outside on the sun-less terrace so we crept back inside for coffee by the window, where we made a new friend.

He really really really wanted to come inside and kept jumping up on the seats and giving us pleading looks. At one point he got all tangled up in his lead and just as I was about to tell his owners a lady came up from nowhere and sorted him out. Ah, the kind people of Yorkshire!

Boyfriend bought himself a new toy in one of the shops: a kite! I was a bit skeptical at first but now that he's had hours and hours of fun with it over the last few days I can only agree it was a great idea (pics of all the fun coming soon!). We went and looked for a good place to do some kite-flying but had to turn back after a while because I was wearing highly inappropriate platform shoes.

We managed to spot a bit of wildlife on our short walk though!

This is the Brontë family house, which is quite interesting on the inside and worth a visit if you're a fan.

This is the Brontë family cat. Well, judging by it's age it probably could have been.

So that was the first half of our magical day off, stay tuned for some serious kite-flying coming up next!


A pocket full of Rye

Fine, so no points for originality in naming my post, but I was influenced by all the eponymous shops in Rye so let's just say it's a friendly tribute to them.

I had spotted a few pictures of Rye (which is in East Sussex, not Kent, which got me really confused as to what county we'd stayed in the night before) while hunting for a B&B in the area and as we had a few hours before we needed to set off to Warwick I thought we'd have a snoop around.

Although it's obviously pretty touristy, Rye still has a small-town feel about it and there's lots to explore. Unsurprisingly, the antique and vintage shops are over-priced (or maybe I'm just used to t'prices up North nowadays) but still interesting to wander around.

The cafes are cute and serve delicious mochas and yummy-looking pastries.

The pubs offer free wifi and big terraces full of flowers.

Basically, Rye is old and interesting and beautiful. Mermaid street is particularly famous and I can see why.

It's full of really pretty houses and of course I chose this one as my dream house:

Postman Pat, Postman Pat, Postman Pat and his black and white cat...

I really wish we'd had more time to explore the town and the whole area. Maybe on our next trip back from France!


The return of the hairy lantern

If you've been reading this here blog for a while you'll know that I once made a hairy lantern out of strips of paper and hung it in our flat in Paris.

When we moved I gave it to a friend as I anticipated that putting it in a box and transporting it across the channel might lead to some damage. I really missed it though, and since the lampshades in our Yorkshire house are the epitome of boring beige, I decided to get an even bigger paper lantern and bring the hairy monster back to life.

To spice things up a bit I ordered some wallpaper samples and added them to the mix. Unfortunately quite a few of them ended up being too rigid or too floppy (yes, that's the technical term) to be used. In the end I'm quite pleased with the overall effect though, and I hope to recycle the surviving samples into something else.

Basically I used the same technique as before : paper, scissors, tape, and lots and lots of episodes of modern family. This time I measured and traced the triangles onto the paper because I wanted to make sure each one was identical. 

This is what it looked like after about 1 hour:

As the lantern has a spiral frame I papered along that line, using one sheet of wallpaper for each row, making each pattern overlap a little.

This created a spiral of pattern that runs around the lantern twice. 

Some of the wallpaper samples I did use decided to curve inwards after being cut out and hung, which makes for a claw-like effect. Luckily I'm not a perfectionist and I can live with this.

Now I'm tired of explaining so you can just look at the photos.

At first it bothered me that you can see the names of the samples if you peek inside the lantern. Those stickers on the backs of the samples wouldn't come off without tearing the paper. But now? Now I can sleep at night because I'm just glad it's FINISHED.

I do think it brings the room together a bit more (as much as it ever will, considering none of the furniture really goes together) even though it's considerably darker now with the light on. Sounds like an excuse to go out and buy more lamps to me!


A few of my favourite (English) things

I can't tell you how serene I felt when we drove off the ferry in Dover last week, knowing we would soon be curling up in a comfy bed and breakfast in the English countryside. I hadn't ever stopped this close to the coast and I wasn't quite prepared for this level of quaintness! Tiny country lanes, sheep and baby lambs, green fields (not that there aren't any of those in France, but the green isn't quite the same), friendly pubs... and the most cosy room ever!

A room with a view, too...

Several views in fact. Is it me or are we having a staring contest?

Once again I had to snap pictures of every little corner of the room like a weirdo.

That jug... I want one! 

We drove to the nearby village of Appledore (this is all in Kent, by the way) for dinner at the local pub. I felt as if a film crew was going to appear any moment, that's how perfect all the houses looked. My heart also skipped a beat when I spotted a whole page full of vegetarian options on the menu at the pub. Not that I'm a hardcore veggie anymore, but given the choice I'm happy to go without meat. And I feel all warm and fuzzy inside when people are understanding about it and don't make me feel like a crazy person for this (yes France, I'm talking about you!). Anyway, this isn't a blog about food, it's a blog about pretty houses!

Also swan-shaped trees that grow in front of houses with names like "Abel". I tell you, this village was the essence of quaint. We even found a footpath along the side of a house that led us to this:

After a magical walk in the wild we took some more pics of the village and headed back to our comfy bed.

Oh how I would love to live in a house with a little gate and a little path leading up to it!

The abandonned house in the middle of the main street. Looks pretty haunted to me!

As usual I had to pick a dream house and this one was it. I like that it looks like the good ol' house I used to draw over and over again at school when I was 3 years old (minus the big braggy car).

As we were driving back to the B&B we came across this little stall by the side of the road. I particularly liked the sign: "Money in the letterbox. If you steal you will be caught!". Something else you wouldn't want to attempt in France.

After a good night's sleep we were treated to the full English (and I didn't even have to ask for the veggie option!!) in a gorgeous dining room where all the guests share a table and get to have a little chat.

Then we made our way to the town of Rye where I took a bazillion pictures to be posted soon. I would like to add that if you're ever looking for a beautiful and reasonably priced place to stay in the area I would highly recommend clicking here and booking straight away. The owners are the friendliest of people and sadly they explained to us that because most people (including myself) now use booking websites, they're no longer making any money and will probably end up having to sell the house. Don't let this happen! Visit Kent! You won't be disappointed!

I keep forgetting to say: there are lots more pics of our most recent adventures on my flickr page! Go and have a look!