Category Archives: Homely Hankers

Love Tubs vs. Bouji Bargains

I saw these beautiful Love Tubs recently and developed a strong hankering. The curvy legs, button seat and back and the rolled top have certainly made me fall in love.

Velvet Love Tub - Oliver Bonas

There’s just enough room to snuggle up with someone lovely on here, but if you like your seat to yourself they come as single tub chairs too. Both designs come in these bright and sunny colours. Probably best not to keep them outside though…

Velvet Tub Chairs - Oliver BonasGo the whole hog with a matching ottoman in a contrasting colour.

Velvet Ottoman - Oliver Bonas

The Love Tubs are £545, Tub Chairs are £385 and the ottoman is £365 from Oliver Bonas.’s Bouji collection is similar in shape but comes in more subtle cotton-linen fabric or gothic black or cherry velvet.

Bouji Chair - Made.comI can hardly believe they make a profit by selling the chair at £189 and the rather gorgeous and ornate ottoman at £169. But who am I to look a gift horse in the mouth? Delivery can take a while with but the quality of the products I’ve bought has always been excellent and the wait is definitely worth it.

Bouji Ottoman -

I love the velvet brights of the Oliver Bonas chairs but I also love the contrasting piping and legs of the Bouji collection. Which do you prefer?

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Below Stairs Of Hungerford

Have you visited Below Stairs of Hungerford? I found it yesterday and have already lost quite a few hours looking through all their stuff. It is an Aladdin’s Cave of amazing finds.

This General Post Office leather Gladstone bag is definitely my favourite item for four reasons. Firstly, it is unused, secondly it has G.P.O on the side, thirdly it is £200 & finally it is just beautiful.

Unused Leather Gladstone Bag L17 - Below Stairs of Hungerford

I think this 1900/1920s letter rack is wonderful, in fact I’d like it in our hallway. Our house was built in 1926 so it would fit right in. It’s £75.

Letter Rack - Below Stairs of Hungerford

There are so many jelly, ice and entrée moulds on this site it is fantastic, there’s even one in the shape of a tongue! They are mainly copper so are pretty pricey with some of the more ornate ones for sale at around £300. This tiny unused teardrop entrée mould is just gorgeous and as it’s small, so is its price tag of £16.

Copper Entree Mould, 9 Available JM94 - Below Stairs of Hungerford

The kitchenalia section is very impressive with gadgets from coffee grinders to whisks to apple peelers, coveted items as copper saucepans and even a 1940s electric oven and a recipe book from the same era.

Mrs Beeton's All About Cookery B13 - Below Stairs of Hungerford

Need a new washing machine? What about the 1928 ‘Wonder Washer’? So much nicer looking than our white goods, if not as practical.

Copper Washing Machine WP11 - Below Stairs of Hungerford

There’s a great range of old enamel signs and advertising materials, one that had me hankering was this pre-war copper ashtray from the hotel where my husband and I spent our wedding night.

Richmond Hill Hotel Copper Ashtray A20 - Below Stairs of Hungerford

I could show you more and more but go on over and have a browse, Below Stairs of Hungerford have an amazing range of quirky pieces. I really enjoyed looking through the more unusual sections such as the police equipment, medical items and old postboxes. I think I may have to make time to go and have a look in person at their shop in Berkshire.

What is your favourite item?

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Lights & Shades

I’ve been hankering after a turned wood standard lamp base that isn’t super expensive for ages. I found this Cotswold one at Scarlett Plum for £80 which is half the price I’ve seen similar elsewhere. Isn’t it nice?

Cotswold Standard Lamp Stand - Scarlett Plum

Now I just need to decide what shade to pair it with.

I could go monochrome by adding these amazing black beetles shades. They match the napkins I showed you last week. These lampshades are a collaboration between Quincy Lampshades and Warbeck & Cox and cost £40.

Black Beetles Lampshade - Quincy Lampshades/Warbeck & Cox

This knitted Starlight lampshade by Betty Knitter is very cosy looking and £55 for large or £25 for a small one.

Starlight Lampshade - Betty Knitter

Lush Designs have created this beautiful Fox & Cubs lampshade in three colours. I’m slightly torn between the neutral shade and the more foxy red and black. A small lampshade is £31 and the larger one is £44 and you can choose between a pendant or a lamp fitting.

Fox & Cubs Lampshade - Lush Designs

 Maybe I could try my hand at making my own lampshade at Quincy Lampshades’s workshop in Bristol in June. It’s £28.25 so could work out cheaper than buying one.

Have you ever made a lampshade? How hard is it?

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Wipe Your Mouth

For me, napkins make dining feel a bit more special. The process of smoothing the linen over your lap, or better still tucking it into your collar, helps to whet the appetite and prepares the subconscious for the freedom to dine with abandon and without a second thought to ruining your clothes. Got food all round your mouth? No matter, you can delicately wipe it off with your napkin without looking like a glutton.

Saying that, my Dad and step-mum are the only people I know who actually use napkins every day at their dining table (kitchen roll doesn’t count people!). After eating at their house recently I thought it would be nice to get some napkins at home. Here are some of the ones I’m hankering after.

Subtly remind guests of their table manners by giving them Polite Napkins to use, you can always resort to holding one up if you notice any elbows on the table. By Imogen Luddy they are available in grey or green at £10 each or £35 for a set of four of one design.

Polite Napkins - Imogen Luddy, Bouf

I really like these beetle napkins by Warbeck & Cox but maybe not for the squeamish? Available in green or black at £20 for a set of four. The same design is available in all sorts of other products too.

Beetle Napkins - Warbeck & Cox

Personalise your napkins for all your regular guests. The generic ‘guest’ and ‘the girlfriend’ will mean you won’t have to update them every time your tastes change. By Jonny’s Sister, they are £9 each or £30 for a set of four.

Personalised Napkins by Jonny's Sister

I’ve not seen anything similar to these lovely Another Rainy Day napkins and an extra bonus is they’re dark and are less likely to show any stubborn stains. Made in Ireland by Handmade By Me, who also do custom designs if you know what you want your napkin to look like but just can’t find it anywhere.

Another rainy day napkins by Handmade By Me

Do you think fabric napkins are too muh faff to wash and iron or do you enjoy the luxury of using one?

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Junk Bear

Today I came across Junk Bear and his ‘junkdar’ and I’m so glad I did.

Not only was my mood brightened by the Jaffa juicer‘s description (designed to be sung to ‘I Like To Move It’), but I found these beautiful and sexy 1950s French glass mugs.

French Blue Cups - Junk Bear

Aren’t they gorgeous? The set of six is just £15.

There’s a whole section of old cameras for you to choose from including a Super 8 camera and a camera with bellows. A portable record player for vinyl lovers, plus a toys and games section. I’ve never seen a Cress Board before, but I’m hankering after one now and thinking of all the messages I could leave on it.

Cressboard-Junk Bear

Junk Bear is full of wonderfully quirky pieces but to be honest I’m not sure which you’ll like best, the items for sale or the descriptions of Junk Bear dating flapper girls and wrestling crocodiles. I think regular visits will be needed to keep my mood lifted.

Now the song is in all our heads, let’s just go with it. All together now, “Physi-cally fit, physi-cally fit…”

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Beastly Hooks & Handles

I know I’ve already shown you some animal heads this week but I think these animal coat hooks/door knobs are adorable. I’m hankering after some buffalo heads to use as handles on my beloved kitchen queen (when I finally get round to repainting it), but I’m not sure if they’ll be too big at 10cm x 8cm. They would go with my stampeding cow wallpaper beautifully.

Zoo Dear Animals Coat Hooks/Knobs, White Buffalo - Rockett St George

Not got cows on your walls? Then what about deer, ducks, horses or pigs?

Zoo Animal Coat Hooks/Knobs - Rockett St George

I’m also considering getting a couple of rabbit heads to hang my tea towels on in my rabbit obsessed kitchen.

Zoo Dear Animals Coat Hooks/Knobs,White Rabbit - Rockett St George

There is so much character in their little polystyrene and metal heads that really I’m hankering after them all, they’re £10.95 each from Rockett St George. Which is your favourite?

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Key Dramas

The first big argument my husband and I had once we started living together was about keys. My husband is a tidy person, if he sees keys lying around he will put them somewhere safe and logical, so he hangs them on the key hook in the kitchen. My mind didn’t use that logic though. If my keys weren’t exactly where I left them I’d assume they were in my bag, admittedly I didn’t always check, but being the only adult in my household for almost a decade makes you certain about these things. So in the first few weeks of living together I may have been locked out once or twice or made myself late tearing the house apart trying to find my keys, not looking on the key hook of course because I didn’t put them there. There may have been some shouting. As you can see I’m not that reasonable or easy to live with.

I’m much more reasonable about keys and key hooks now, but I’d prefer one of these designs than the small brass hooks the previous owner of our house installed.

I do like clouds and this cloud key holder by Suck UK is no exception, it has three strong magnets on the underside so your keys hang below like strange bolts of lightning.

Cloud Keyholder - Suck UK

Have a little sparrow as your key holder and you can slot him into his bird house when you get in and never lose your keys again. Available as double sparrows for £19.99 or a single sparrow for £12.50 so you can have one for each person you live with.

Pink/White Sparrows In Bird House Key Rings - Nestgifts

Alternatively hang your keys on these wild animal ends, choose from heads or tails or get both and put on opposite sides of the wall so it looks like they are walking through. The Pack Rack is by Steph Mantis who also does really cool magnet versions.

Pack Rack Necklace or Key Rack - Steph MantisPack Rack Necklace or Key rack in Yellow Pine - Steph Mantis

I think I prefer the tail ends, what about you?

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Sideboard Splendour

Zoe from Conversation Pieces tweeted a picture of her gorgeous colourful vintage sideboard a couple of weeks ago and since then I’ve not been able to get sideboards out of my head. Here’s some that I’m hankering after.

Chloe’s rounded edges and studded surface keep coming to my mind. Isn’t she beautiful? She wouldn’t work in our house at all, which means I won’t get to stroke her but it is good for our bank balance. From Love Your Home For Less for £595.

Chloe Metal Sideboard - Love Your Home For Less

With its straight lines and corners Made’s Vernay cabinet is very different to Chloë, I definitely prefer the multi-coloured version but if it would clash with your decor the oak version is still gorgeous and fifty quid cheaper at £299.

Vernay Cabinet -

This 1960s vintage English teak sideboard from Vintage Retro looks in such good condition and is really lovely looking with a price to match at £190. I love the handles.

Long 60s vintage English teak sideboard - Vintage Retro

Vintage Retro have another 60s sideboard that’s 2 metres wide and possibly Swedish in heritage, it’s £130 as it has a water damaged top but I reckon that could be dealt with by covering with some nice wallpaper or fabric and adding a glass top. What do you think?

60s vintage light long sideboard - Vintage Retro

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Al Fresco Apparatus

Now the weather is showing signs of brightening up I’ve been planning summer days sipping a long drink in the garden. Although the only thing in our garden is a trampoline and I can see that combination getting a bit messy so I’ve been hankering after garden furniture.

Not strictly a garden chair as it would look just as nice indoors or outdoors this seat has been inspired by a beer barrel making it lightweight, weather-proof and pretty darn gorgeous in my opinion. I really like the cushion too. It’s £155 from Garden Trading.

Barrel Seat by Garden Trading

I’ve always wanted a hammock but am a bit scared that whatever I attach it to will collapse on me when I’m in it, so this hammock and stand set by Hammock Heaven would let me relax rather than lie there rigid with fear. At a little over £96 I think it’s great value. They’ve also got a baby hammock which is probably the cutest thing I’ve ever seen.

Jet Set Hammock & Stand Set by Hammock Heaven

Also from Hammock Heaven is the Globo, a gorgeous sculptural version of the swing seat. It isn’t cheap at just over £530 for the single version but it is beautiful. There is a double version and a kid’s version too.

Single Globo by Hammock Heaven

Taking garden furniture literally are Parameria who handmake these armchairs from natural sustainable materials in Thailand. They are so intricate and the curvy shape is wonderful. Available in two sizes from £275, I’m hankering for one of these.

Handmade armchair made from natural sustainable materials - Parameria

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A Melange of Maps

I bought my husband these vintage map cufflinks with the location of where we got married on one cufflink and where we honeymooned on the other, as a six-month wedding anniversary present (sickly newly weds!). Since then I’ve been hankering after some map things for our home.

Philippa Stanton makes these beautiful vintage map lamps. Choose from Isle of Wight & Solent, Brighton, Rochester & Chatham or various areas of London for around £44 including the base or ask for a bespoke lamp with the area of your choice.

Vintage Johnston's 1930's Map Lamp featuring The Isle of Wight and The Solent - 5ftinf

These coasters and placemats by Scarlett Willow Ltd. can be personalised with the postcode of your choice in the centre and as an older or more modern style map. They start at £40 for a set of four coasters. A nice idea for a house-warming present.

Personalised Map Coasters & Placemats by Scarlett Willow Ltd

I love this blanket box from Flutterbug Interiors, the UK map decoupage design includes the interior too. This size is £89 or a smaller size is £55.

Uk Map Decoupaged Storage Box - Flutterbug Interiors

The Origin of the Unit artwork by Terror Dome is really gorgeous, each member of the family is made from a map of where they spent their childhood. The family of four version is £57 and comes framed in a shadow box. It can be personalised further based on number of family members and what mix of girls and boys are in the family.

Origin of the Unit - TerrorDome

I’ve always hankered after a dressmaker’s dummy and Grace & Favour Homes do a lovely range. With most of them starting at £175 they’re not cheap, but this decoupaged London map mannequin is really stunning.

London Map Mannequin by Grace & Favour Home

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