Posts tagged ‘Etsy’

May 10, 2010

making a home {including a bit of primitive in our urban lives}

Yesterday the fantastic writer Amanda Talbot posted an article on her Heart & Design blog about “Primitive Living”.  She writes that “…according to the Future Foundation 45% of 25-44 year-old’s feel the need to be closer to the countryside” and in my opinion the 55% that don´t simply haven´t yet realised their need to be closer to nature.

I grew up in the countryside so whenever I spend long periods of time in the city I start craving that connection with nature.  I miss waking up in the morning and hearing the birds tweeting rather than cars rushing by, I miss opening my window and seeing greenery rather than grey, I miss being able to leave my house in jogging bottoms and welly boots and walking for miles without seeing anyone.  Whether in the countryside or the city I always try to buy locally produced British food that does not come in 2 tons of packaging, not just because I realise the importance of buying locally, but also because having grown up on a fruit farm I know how much better produce tastes that has only travelled a few miles rather than 8000 miles.  It always amazed me how ignorant my flatmates who grew up in the city were to these commonsense ideas.

Luckily opinion and awareness is improving and people are starting to realise not only the importance of nature and preserving it, but also how good it can make one feel.  We have done a bit of research into how us Twenty Somethingers can add a little bit of “Primitive Living” to our Urban lives.  So here goes:

{Buy British} This is a small change that we can all make.  Rather than buying ready-packaged fruit and vegetables from supermarkets make a conscious effort to buy fruit and vegetables that are labelled with the British Flag and only select the amount that you need.  Ideally locate your local fruit and veg shop and only buy as you need.  Also try and buy what is in season; if you buy an apple in January it is either imported or has been grown in artificial conditions.  Click here for a table outlining the fruit and vegetable seasons.  You will be amazed at the difference in taste as well as how good it makes you feel supporting your local community.
{grow your own}  It doesn´t matter what, but growing some kind of plant (no puns here) will make you feel more connected with nature.  Also, plants help absorb the Carbon Dioxide from the atmosphere so it will make your urban flat/house a healthier place to be.  It can be anything from a small herb garden for your windowsill – I found this great little set for £9.99 from Amazon

Image from the Amazon website

It will also make your home cooked food taste great!

If you´re feeling more ambitious the French Company BACSAC provides an “alternative solution to get round the constraints of the creation of a roof garden in town: difficulties of transportation, excessive weight, but also lack of choice of containers, most of which are often very expensive”.  Their varied collection means there is something for every home and space so if you´re looking to create your own vegetable plot but you live in a 50 m2 studio flat this is for you – and the prices are reasonable too:

Images courtesy of Botanique Editions and Jardin Chic websites.  Both stockists of the BACSAC products.

{weekend activities} There are all sorts of activities that you can do out in the countryside at the weekends that will get some fresh air in your lungs.

One of my favourite group activities is GO APE

Image courtesy of the GO APE website

Get a group of friends together and scale your local treetop course!

If you´re working on more of a budget simply go for a walk.  The Walking Routes website offers thousands of different routes for all abilities so get your boots on and get walking!

Hiring bikes is also a great way of seeing the countryside.  The Enjoy England website offers ideas for every region in the UK.

{primitive, vintage and handmade decor} Next time you are thinking of redecorating, rather than heading down to your local Ikea, think primitive, vintage and handmade.  As Amanda Talbot writes; “When we bring handmade into our homes the pieces speaks of the connection and love with which the object was made.  It can be sensual, full of sentiment and imperfect”.

A great website for buying handmade and vintage furniture and homeware is Etsy.  Etsy is a community of artists selling their homemade products.  You can find everything from furniture to jewellery to bags.  Here are a few of my Etsy picks:

Dureza Dining Table, $1,900

African Masks, $9.00

Bankoffee – Velvet and Burlap Coffee Sack Pillow, $50.00

All images courtesy of Etsy

These fantastic hessian cushions not only look great, but they are made from burlap sacks which were once used to transport green coffee beans all over the world, so you are recycling as well as redecorating!

So there you have it – a few simple ideas to help us Twenty Somethingers feel more connected to the nature.

May 5, 2010

happiness {rediscover your childhood creative side}

Who didn´t love colouring – in when you were little!?  NO-ONE!  It was the best thing ever –  making sure you coloured between the lines, selecting the appropriate colour… ahhh memories!  Well who says colouring-in should only be for children!?  NO-ONE!

A little bit of creative time now and then is important for people of all ages – not just for children!

Our picks of creative fun for Twentysomethingers:

(1) The Domestic Sluts have inspired our first pick with another fabulous Etsy find.

The old childhood favourite – colouring in (for adults):

Inbalimor Colouring Book

(2) Paint your own pottery, glaze it and take it home with you!  A favourite pastime of mine – the Glazydayz Pottery Cafe even organises hen parties:

Glazydayz Pottery Cafe in Ledbury, Gloucestershire

(3) If you´re that bit more serious about developing your creative side the Online Artcourses directory will help you to pick out the ideal course for you:

Artcourses directory

I am definitely going to invest in the colouring book – depending on how that goes I might consider classes!