Tuesday, June 10, 2014

written in the stars

inspired by the color yellow and a dark-blue polyester skirt found in a charity shop, i tried my hand at embroidering Taurus and Gemini, two of the constellations of the zodiac that me and the mister were born under.

Taurus is known as "the bull" and Gemini, "the twins".  They are both very near each other up in the skies.

i also came across these personalized crafty projects all over the net so it was just easy to get started.  All I needed apart from the navy blue cloth were yellow embroidery threads, a 12cm embroidery hoop, a needle and a pattern that i traced over the front part.

they are both now hung in our hallway.  Now, gotta get meself ready to repaint the hallway.  and that is another post altogether :)

Saturday, May 31, 2014

flea market finds: i don't mind a little soft-soap

it all started with a very grumpy mister who just got out of the shower grumbling that we ran out of his hardy soap and was left with no choice but to reluctantly use my shower gel(!).  he prefers any soap rather than the liquid shower gel as long as it comes in a bar.  the rougher, the better.

i've read somewhere that the soap bars in Portugal were very good.  So good that, in fact, Oprah is a big fan.  Particularly the Claus Porto brand.  It was listed as one of her Favorite Things back in 2007.  

Claus Porto is made by Ach. Brito, the company that has been making most of the soaps in Portugal since 1887!  They make all kinds of soaps, not just the high end ones.

so, i asked a Portuguese friend of mine who regularly goes home to Portugal if she could buy me some regular soap as a tester (Portugal is about 5-6 hours drive from Gibraltar).  She brought me 2 and when we used it, it was the creamiest, most fragrant soap we've ever used!  even the mister is now a big fan!  and they were not even the expensive ones that Oprah uses! from then on, i was hooked and began looking out for soaps (any kind really as long it is in a bar) in my haunts.
love the wrapping in the Ach Brito soaps!  very Pop or Art Deco.  the one on the left is made from goat's milk (soo creamy!)
found a beribboned pack of L'Occitane soaps with milk or honey in a carboot sale for next to nothing!  L'Occitane is a French company that follows and preserves the tradition of Provence, France.

speaking of France, i found two bars of the popular Savon de Marseille in a table top sale...again, for next to nothing.  

here in Gibraltar, there is a new shop in Main Street where you can't help but go in and have a browse.  the smell is just heavenly.  the Gibraltar Soap Shop is not only budget-friendly but they also sell a lot of vegan-friendly products for men and women.
love the tissue paper pom-poms in their window
have tried some of their products and they smell amazing

now, please excuse moi while i take my nth shower for the day ;)

Monday, May 12, 2014

day out to the Sabinillas flea

it was a Sunday and probably the hottest day since summer arrived here in the Mediterranean and on a whim, the mister and i decided to check out a flea market (or "rastro" as they are called in Spain) in Sabinillas, Spain that a friend of ours recommended.  Sabinillas is about 20 minutes away by car from Gib.

so together with another friend of ours, we hopped on the car and looked for the place with a lot of people, hoping for an adventure.

 i love this poster but the mister wont let me buy Jet Li.

beautiful paintings of the idyllic Spanish coastline as well as ordinary things people do (such as a guy standing over a presumably dead guy!).  also, there were a lot of religious iconography scattered about.

surprise, surprise!  we saw the sword from Game of Thrones! made from Valyrian steel no less and.....ohhhhh that helmet!

tutus in all colors of the rainbow!

i love these African baskets!  

i also love this guy.  just dont know where to put him in our house!

animal skulls (maybe cows or bulls)

there's plenty of signs available for the homeowner with a house full of exits

cow bells of all sizes

this guy is rated PG though (you have been warned!)

in the end, i loved all of them but unfortunately i had to leave them all behind.  we bought loads of fresh fruits though: avocados, mangoes, loquats, peaches, green apples; and herbs (we love our mint tea!).

Friday, April 25, 2014

ring the curtain up

once again, busy as a bee with the house.  found the perfect fabric for curtains but my poor tiny sewing machine couldn't take it anymore so i had to borrow a friend's to finish them.

the simple curtain rod i found at a chinese shop for half the price what the home decor shops were offering.  the rings and alligator clips we bought in ikea.

this is my first time sewing curtains by the way so couldnt tell you enough how much this tutorial from Domestic Imperfection helped me! it took me 3 weeks (because i had to borrow a sewing machine) to finish the two panels but here is the final product:

another project that i finished sewing in only about an hour but took two weeks to find the near-perfect fabric is this one below.  the fabric is dark green (because i couldnt find black).  i used this tutorial from Shelterness as a guide.

here's how it looks now:  
i gotta do something about the colours! they're everywhere!

Monday, March 17, 2014

flea market finds: dansk love

i have been coveting (any) dansk product ever since i saw them on other blogs and in pinterest.  their designs are just so different and unusual and interesting.  i've never thought i'd see them in Gib but lo and behold one day in my favorite shops, i see this...

the lady in the store didn't know what it was so she gave it to me for next to nothing! it took me awhile to find the very slim candlesticks though.  they weren't available here in Gib and no one has heard of tall, slim, tapered ones. i was about to ask for it on my birthday from a friend living in the States when I saw a pack of Chanuka candles in our local grocery store with just the perfect diameter but way shorter (about 9.5 cms only).  YES!

i also found this oh so beautiful hand-blown pale turquoise vase with an amber base.  Another one to add to my turquoise glass collection :)

just look at the details!

Saturday, March 1, 2014


moving house has been so stressful but the thought of decorating and adding all the good things i've always wanted in our very own house made me get up every morning with the hugest smile on my face.

one of the very first things i made was a sunburst clock (i noticed that when we initially moved into the new house we habitually looked towards the empty walls whenever somebody asked what time it is!).  so i bought a cheap second hand clock in a local buy-and-sell Facebook page here in Gib, glue-gunned a few skewer sticks, spray-painted it in bronze (i wanted copper but couldn't find any in the stores here) aaaaaaaand voila!

my new DIY bronz-y sunburst clock
prepping my clock by glue-gunning barbecue skewers at the back of the clock and covering the hands with painter's tape
the cheap second-hand clock I bought from a Facebook page 
i enjoyed doing this project because the mister and i had to find an open space to spray paint.  he said he knew of a place. and then he took me up the Rock!  and while waiting for the paint to dry (fairly quickly!) we had fun counting our blessings and enjoying the glorious view :)

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

we've moved!

Hi guys!  First of all, Happy New Year to all of you, very late I know but its only been just now that I got a breather from moving houses.  The pre-planning, the actual move in itself and not to mention the preparation of the new house was really very tiring, both mentally and physically for both me and the mister.

I have not been going to my favorite shops as well :(  but I've been busy DIY-ing around the new house :)  I love creating new stuff for the house.  Oh the things I would want to do but ...i feel its just limited because of the fact that its a flat (apartment) and not a house.  I can't even spray paint inside the house :(

Anyway,  my first DIY was this geometrical art work I put on a section of the living room with a faux brick wall.

I got this idea from this video found in YouTube.  I just used ordinary white A4 papers of differing sizes and stuck them on the wall with double-sided tape.  Voila!  No more drab walls!

Good to be back!