Little Vintage Refurbs And Upcycles

I’ve currently been working on a few smaller scale refurb projects. These include yet another vintage spice rack complete with lidded jars and a vintage wooden letter rack which I’ll show you in a later post.

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Well, as for the spice rack which was a plain wall mountable small shelf in a rose wood colour, I simply reprinted the shelf using farrow and ball in the colour Pale Hound. First my shelf was sanded and primed before giving it a total of two coats of the paint. I then applied some clear Annie Sloan wax before giving the entire piece a light quick sanding only applying light pressure with a piece of 100 grit sandpaper. I then applied a second coat of wax that I buffed and left to dry.

The jars were cleaned and the original labels left on. I removed the lids that were made of the same wood and these were painted with Annie Sloan chalk paint in the colour Paris Grey. Two coats were applied before being waxed and sanded in the same way as the shelf they would stand on.

I then used my Annie Sloan paint to paint a small moulding which I brought in the design and shape of a rose from an online source. Once dry I used some extra strong wood glue to apply the painted moulding to the centre of the shelf, before finally adding my jar lids and standing them on their newly painted shelf.

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Simple… Its complete and now ready to be mounted on someone’s kitchen wall, where just a few hours ago this was just about ready for the bin! The difference a little shabby chic makes is amazing & very easy to create.

This will now be sold and is available now. You can find me at vintage fairs, bootfairs and festivals throughout the summer mainly in London and Kent. But if I’m not at an event near you, those wanting to buy any of the vintage furniture and nicknacks I sell (including vintage jewellery and textiles) can do so by contacting me directly (email address in side bar or contact tab). I often display some of my items here on the blog or via Instagram (Claire Louise Parkinson). I’m in the process of creating a few pages on the blog to display such items and this should be ready shortly so please look out for this.

Vintage Sparkle

I’m a big fan of vintage, especially when it comes to jewellery. Its my opinion that vintage and retro jewellery, whether costume or that made from precious metals, was made to a much higher standard then that of today.

I’ve been putting my love of all things vintage to good use. I’ve set up stalls at Battersea, pimlico, and other various locations within london and Kent and I’ve been selling everything from funky retro clothing to 1920’s rhinestone bracelets.

Whether its at craft festivals, vintage fairs or good old bootsales, I’ve discovered that I’m actually rather good at selling this stuff, which has to be down to my fine eye for vintage flare. When it comes to jewellery, I’m a natural! I’ve always been a bit of a magpie and this is of great benefit when your choosing pieces specifically to sell. I won’t lie, its required me to engage in a good bit of research… Yes, I now have a load of names of both jewellery designers and manufacturers who’s pieces are worth buying, stuck in the fore front of my mind but its great fun all the same.

Here’s some images of some of the pieces I’ve brought over the past few months.

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The above is just some of what I’ve had on the stall. Brooches are probably my favourite thing to buy and sell! There really are some fantastic designs out there in need of discovering. It seems crazy how two brooches of the same age can vary so much in value purely due to its design, I’ve even had costume pieces valued to be worth more than silver pieces. But brooches and jewellery in general aren’t just something for the stall! I’ve also got a fabulous personal collection of my own. I love silver, especially old vintage silver! Don’t get me wrong, I’m a fan of gold and own a nice collection of gold jewellery, but my silver collection is much greater. Below is a new early 1950s silver and marcasite necklace that I got this week along with another necklace and earrings I brought from eBay.

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The following images were taken today. These are some of my newest pieces of vintage costume jewellery that I’ve acquired for the stall . This was all delivered today having been sent from France and I’m totally in love with the rainbow crystal necklace with Art Deco clasp that was purchased in Italy some 47 years ago. I’m also smitten with the single pearl necklace with Rhinestone clasp and stunning M&S Rhinestone necklace with matching bracelet… Stunning.

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I’m currently in the process of creating a page specifically designed to showcase some of the latest items I’ve uncovered and plan on selling. Of course, everybody is free to check it out.

Thanks for reading… Clairelouise.x

My Lashes Of London Look Book

Ever heard off Lashes of London? Well… You have now! Sshh its a secret.

I’ve created a look book displaying all my favourite items. So… Here they are.

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1 Beautiful sequinned bomber jacket £85

2: I absolutely love the Rizzo Polka dot jumpsuit that can now be grabbed for just under £15 following a sale reduction from its original price of £49.00!

3: I adore the Candy Cain Sequinned Skater Dress! I don’t think it would particularly suit my frame but it would look fantastic on my sister making a great birthday gift idea. Plus its currently reduced in the sale from £75 to £37.50.

These snake skin leggings are super cute. They would be perfect work with some flat ankle boots or even a pair of high-tops. The snake skin leggings would also see me through the summer making a fabulously comfy, yet trendy choice for all those pending festivals. Better still these are also on sale. Was £22.00 now just £6.50… Total bargain.

One of my most girly finds was that of the beautiful Trixie Mint PU Circle mini skirt. The colour is a stunning shade of mint green stunning and I’ve fallen for it… Pretty yet sophisticated… “Yep, that’s me alright” The skirt cost £35 pounds but would look great for any occasion.

Finally I had to share this ‘Neon City Chiffon Bandeau’ in this pretty orange shade its bound to be a show stopper. This would go down a tweet during a summers cocktail party… I love it.

However, what I do love more is that of the price! An amazing £23.70 instead of £79.00! Now that’s what I call a bargain.

Having not long discovered Lashes of London I’ve not had the privilege to shop at the online store. I now firmly have my eye on a few beautiful pieces and the store is safely bookmarked on the iPhone.

To check out the fabulous Lashes of London, visit the online store to have a browse. The sale section is full off great offers and deals allowing you to get the items you want at very little cost.

This is my competition entry into the Lashes of London wishlist competition.

How Too Capture Perfect Images Of Your Little Ones

Zulily, the guys who bring us daily events offering both mothers and they’re children beautiful items at cut cost prices, have been asking us bloggers what we think it takes to capture a great image of our kids. We are to give our top three tips on the subject and one blogger could possibly win a Zulily voucher.

Given I love snapping pictures of my children whenever opportunity will have it, I decided this one was for me!

So… Here we go then…

1) Be Sneaky… By this I mean capture images of your children when they are unaware you and the camera are looming. This is how I’ve captured some of my most beautiful images of my kids. Natural smiles are magical as are expressions of laughter, anger, confusion and more! When images are taken this way there is no forced fake smiles, pouting from your 9 going on 30 year old or that of frozen expressions.
This is especially true for my 12 year old who has a diagnosis of Aspergers Syndrome! He doesn’t really enjoy being photographed and its best to catch him unaware when he is at his most relaxed and happy. I’ve found that as his grown older, trying to capture images of him is now much harder hence the reason I use this tactic often.

Below are some different images of my eldest ‘Little Man’ and my daughter ‘Alice-Sara’. I’ve included both images where they have been fully aware I’m taking pictures and a couple where they haven’t.

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2) Relax and have fun… As well as the older two children I also have a toddler of three. His a bundle of energy and always on the go. Running around after him trying to capture a smile just isn’t going to work. As soon as the toddler has the slightest idea I’m trying to get a picture everything goes wrong. He actually tries to look at the screen as I’m taking a picture which means I just end up with an image that displays a flash of his head or some other unrecognisable blur. I’ve found that by relaxing and having fun with my toddler its provided me with lots of magical moments that transfer into great images. When I’m relaxed, his relaxed and this shows through in my images. I don’t keep him confined to the one area, instead I let him explore his environment, especially when we are taking pictures at the park etc.

Below are some of my favourite images of my toddler just being himself…

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And here’s some images of Harley with his cousin Amy. They are extremely close in age (Amy is 10 weeks younger). As they have grown together, I’ve managed to grab some adorable images of them both over the last few years.

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3. Don’t be afraid to experiment… Of course I prefer to take images with my Canon camera but more often than not I feel the need to capture an image when all I have to hand is my iPhone. This is where good editing tools come into the mix. Photoseed is one of my favourites. Here I can do my more basic editing as well as being that bit more adventures with the different filters on offer. Photoseed also allows me to upload images directly to instagram as opposed to saving them on my iphone, handy when your albums are already taking up 75% of your memory. Nonetheless, when I do have my camera to hand I will often adjust its settings applying different programmes for different subjects and environments. I love to capture motion pictures so will make sure this setting is applied when I’m snapping pictures of the children on the move. I’m also a fan of images taken in black & white or those that sport the more vintage look in which case I often use sepia as filter.

Below are some of my favourite images of my daughter Alice-Sara. The images have both been captured on the Canon or the iphone and filters have been applied with snapseed or Wow FX…

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Zulily are also passionate about photography and there site is enhanced with an aray of beautiful images of their models having fun on set.

Every month the guys at Zulily run a competition where they ask you to upload pictures of your little cuties to instagram. This month they are asking you to snap a picture of your cuties sporting a massive grin. Their favourite photo wins a £100 zulily voucher, storage boxes from Feather and Black and a Juicy Couture clutch for Mum.

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How to enter

Upload an Instagram snap of your little cutie in January sporting a big cheeky grin. Be sure that your profile is public, so that Zulily can see your photo.
Now follow zulilyUK on Instagram (@zulilyUK) and tag your picture with these three things….
#zulilyUKJanuaryCutiesCompetition
@zulilyUK
and either: #zulilynewbie (if you’re new to zulily) or #zulilian (if you’ve already joined zulily)

The competition closes on Thursday 31st of January & the Zulily team will be doing the shortlisting on Friday 1st of February. More info on the Zulily Tumbler

To discover more about Zulily who have daily sale events on designer and Boutique clothing as well as homeware and other items for both mother and child, then visit their stunning site and join for free.

This post is my entry into the Zulily bloggers competition

This Week I’m In Shoe Heaven

Admittedly I’m a lady who likes her shoes… I wont lie! I have many pairs!

Some may argue… Then Why buy more!

I’m entitle to treat myself every now and then especially when I’m treating myself to something for a fraction of its original cost!

I got my hands on two beautiful pairs of shoes this week. Both platforms, both beautiful, both an absolute bargain!

The first pair of shoes were actually delivered to me last Saturday but I was in Bristol. I therefore collected my parcel from the local sorting office on Wednesday and was delighted to discover that the parcel was in fact one of my latest eBay finds…

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They are amazing, I just had to have them! So I added the shoes to my watch list and set an alarm on my iPhone with a reminder of the auctions closing time. I was surprised to discover that this was actually due to end at a funny hour. Despite this being a UK long time eBay seller it was due to end at the Ghastly hour of 3am. Anyone who uses eBay will get where I’m coming from when stating how foolish such a move is! Its one that could have actually cost the seller a great eBay sale! I mean who is awake at 3am? I swear its only me who’s unlucky enough to be kept awake so late. Many people don’t bid till the last hour of auction… Fact! This would have almost definitely affected its final selling price.

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As a result, I snapped up these beauties for the remarkable price of £2 plus a very reasonable £2.50 P&P. Not bad for a beautiful pair of shoes that have only been worn just once.

The second pair of shoes I brought was in london following my Savoo interview. These were from the new Primark flagship store located on Tottenham Court road on the corner of Oxford Street.

The new store that opened late last month (september) is massive and host 4 floors of treasure. There is a great selection in all departments whether women’s, men’s, children’s and even that of homeware.

On this particular day they had many items reduced in price and as a result I snapped these up for just £6 saving £10 from the £16 they were originally.

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To be completely honest, I’ve never really liked the selection of heels stocked by Primark but in the last year I’ve noticed some stunning new lines that tick all the boxes in style and price. I don’t know how well made these are but at £6 it won’t be so heartbreaking if they don’t get through too many nights out (not that I have many but that irrelevant).

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They do seem sturdy with a heel that’s reasonable strong. At £6 I can’t help but to shout about them.

I only got these this past Saturday and hear they are still currently on sale in many Primark stores. If these are not your thing its still worth checking out your nearest store this week as the number of shoes amongst other items on sale, is most definitely worth a look.

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Check out the Fashion Foie Gras blog for an in depth informative review on the Primarks newest London flagship store