Saturday, April 7, 2012

Mirror, mirror, on the wall...

It's not vanity, I swear - I've just got a bit of a thing for gilt-framed mirrors. Especially convex ones. And the more battered they are, the better.

These are all auction finds or donations....

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

And all for the cost of the household charge....

I've been stalking auction houses again - specifically the auction rooms of Waterford's inimitable RJ Keighery.

I picked up some gorgeous pieces at yesterday's auction, but possibly my favourite is this beautiful marble-topped dresser made by Gillow & Co of Lancaster. The stamp suggests it was made in the late 19th century.

The guide was €150-€250, but I bagged it for a bargainous €100. And for once there was no need to do anything with it, apart from a good wipe down.

The cream jugs are by Wedgewood and Spode, and were part of a lot I picked up for €33.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Pimp My Coffee Table

My kids love cars. They won't sit down to eat unless they're armed with at least three dinkies each, which they use to transform the kitchen table into a mini-Monza, complete with sausages for crash barriers.

So when I picked up this rather unpromising old coffee table as an unwanted part-lot at auction, it sat in my garage for a while, until a cunning plan evolved...

What if I could use it to create a play table so cool it might actually persuade them of the merits of sitting down to eat?

Thursday, May 6, 2010

The Best Raspberry Choc Chip Cookies Ever

I adapted this recipe from a couple of others this afternoon, including Rachel Allen's basic cookie recipe. Part-biscuit, part-cake, these are delicious, unctous, oozing meals in themselves, and so easy, a three year old could - in fact did - make them.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

On the Catwalk

So pretty they're almost vulgar, the flowers on this dicentra plant in my back garden look like models at a Jean Paul Gautier show, strutting their stuff on the catwalk.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Two Hours And A Tin Of Paint: Part 2

The real reason I was at the auction in Waterford, where I picked up the wall unit that was eventually reborn as a bathroom cabinet is this - an ancient, creaking, pockmarked, topless marble washstand, yours free with 6 inches of dust and a thriving colony of woodworm.

I spotted it hiding under a box of chipped crockery, and fell in love. It reminded me of something you'd find in a French country farmhouse, possibly with chickens living inside. And then there was all that lovely marble. And those brass casters. The elegant turned legs.

I measured it up, and it fit perfectly in a corner of the kitchen now just used to store the bin. I had to have it.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Two Hours And A Tin Of Paint: Part 1

This year, I've developed an obsession with auction houses. One auction house in particular:  Rody Keighery's eclectic treasure trove in Waterford. 

My canny finds snatched from under the hammer include a gorgeous antique gilt overmantle (€210), two ship's lanterns (€80), a set of dining room chairs (€90), a mirror-backed 70s style trophy cabinet (I just need to win some trophies now) and this rather unloved mahogany wall unit.

Read on to see how I transformed it from this: this: