Monthly Archives: February 2013

Week 7 – these boots were made for… decorating!

20130225-170015.jpg This year I received something absolutely fantastic in the post on Valentine’s Day – a brand spanking new pair of Doc Martens boots (model 1460 smooth milled black, for the attentive to detail). It must be almost fifteen years since I bought my last pair, and those served me well and longer than any pair I’d had previously, so much so that I felt almost like a fly-by-night ingrate for even thinking of replacing them. The process was further complicated by the fact that the exact model that had been so reliable was no longer produced, and I was reluctant to go for something that might be second best.

Ultimately the frustration of not having a wearable pair of Docs won out, and I set to work to find a pair that were most similar to what I’d had. And voila! I love the round toe, the slightly sleeker silhouette and the absence of such bright yellow stitching on these, compared to the absolutely classic model, and I really do think that the milled leather was the secret to the long life of my previous pair – the uppers never cracked, unlike almost ALL the Docs I’d had for any longer period previously.

And now to make them my own. In the past I had a striking pair of cherry-red square-toed DM shoes, which I loved, and a quite bizarre limited-edition pair of boots in beige(!) hessian(!!), which I dyed purple and loved almost as much, even though they spent most of their lifetime looking rather scruffy and being decidedly non-waterproof. I’ve seen people with beads or trinkets threaded onto the laces of their boots, and I decided to try something similar. On my way to the rather funky bead shop, I happened to go into a cheap accessory store that was having a sale on. I bought two cheap Christmas bracelets and decided to plunder them for sparkly stuff to thread onto the laces of my new boots, magpie that I am. You can see my “plunder stash” and the final result below (you can click on the picture of the boots to see a larger version). It may end up feeling a bit OTT – I’ll have to see, but for now I’m happy.

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Week 6 – the coffee machine I forgot

photo(4)I’ve been very tardy about writing this post as I just couldn’t think of anything creative or home-improvementy that had happened in my life during the week concerned. Which was a slightly depressing thought in itself…

But hah! At some point I remembered that this coffee machine arrived bright and early one morning while I was in the shower (typical!) – it’s virtually new but was surplus to the requirements of the people who bought it, and generously they asked if it might find a new home here.

I was sceptical at first as I’m not a big coffee drinker, and M is devoted to his “holy ritual” (as it appears to an onlooker) of grinding the beans and going through the whole (messy) rigmarole with his espresso pot. It’s no great secret that I find the coffee it produces too strong and bitter – and yes, lots of different beans have been tried, but no, I will not adulterate my coffee with milk or sugar – and I’d ended up more or less giving up drinking any as a result. On top of that, we were both rather doubtful that the capsule technology this new machine uses could be a match for actual coffee beans.

The long and the short of it, though, is that it’s been a welcome addition to the household. I’ve started drinking coffee in the mornings again, and the volume, strength and flavour of the cupful it produces suits me just fine – I enjoy drinking it. And even M has taken to using it of an evening for the odd espresso after dinner – it’s less labour-intensive and quicker than the empty-grind-fill-wait routine with his “proper” coffee pot.

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Week 5 – duvet day

20130202-155035.jpgTo start with an apology, this is a fairly rubbish picture and the lighting was pretty dodgy, but I wanted to offer a brief glimpse of the new bedclothes I ordered this week from Amazon, having looked for ages and not been able to find any I liked anywhere local. No doubt many will recoil at the bright colours, but hey, people should know my taste by now…

The pictures on the wall were all cut out of calendars of medieval and pre-Raphaelite art, and they’ve been hanging there for as long as I can remember. They’re beginning to look a bit dog-eared in places by now, but I’m pretty loth to replace them until and unless I can find something I like as much.

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Week 4 – chucking-out time

20130127-155858.jpgNow that feels better – I cleared out this pile from my clothes drawers and cupboards recently and did a general audit of the things left inside. These rejects have in the meantime been bagged up and removed from the flat via the bin, recycling, charity, and one or two specific things to friends. And I’m left with three sackfuls of space for other, more useful things – yay!

Recently I’ve been relying on a small selection of clothes – regularly exchanged and washed, might I add! – and it’s partly because I’d either forgotten what else I had or it was buried at the bottom of a full drawer or cupboard. I’ve now rediscovered some “fresh” things but have taken a critical look at the rest. There are only so many odd old bits of clothes that you can reasonably keep for cleaning / painting / in case of weight loss or weight gain / in the hope that you might actually like them some day…

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