Located in the beautiful Derwent Valley, Tasmania

Saturday, February 25, 2012

flowers and produce at the farmer's market in the Derwent Valley!

It is a perfect, I mean absolutely perfect day in the Derwent Valley today, if a little warm (38 degrees Celsius). So I thought I would stop at the farmer's market on my way to opening the store this morning. And I have a feeling the "magic" ice tea stall will sell out!

Although this farmer's market is very small, it is packed with goodies such as field tomatoes and freshly picked zucchinis with flowers attached.

One can also find treats such as these homemade flat breads made by Devilish Delish. As well as jams, relishes and wild herb pesto. The pesto I bought on my last visit to the market has definitely made my chicken sandwiches a lot more exciting.

The Devilish Delish stall also sells fresh produce such as roman zucchini, squash and herbs.

And prepackaged herbs for your favourite Indian curries. This is a great way to have the fresh herbs and spices you need without waste. Very clever!

The busker's dog was taking a break in the shade, whilst guarding the hard earned money in the hat.

Flowers and nectarines on another great stall from which I bought some free range eggs and apples...

And a large bunch of hydrangeas.

I placed the hydrangeas in our French iron urn at the entrance to our shop. I love these flowers as the blooms last for a long time. Hydrangeas like water right up their stems.

Look at the colour variations, the pinks and purples are gorgeous. In the cool of the shop I am standing at the counter admiring the display. In fact, is it possible for a bunch of flowers to make one's day?

This market is held every Saturday at 9am at the Oast House, New Norfolk.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

new in store...abacus, flour tin, mortar and pestle, vintage luggage and more!

We found this vintage abacus locally during the week. I have a little thing for abaci (I must confess to looking up the plural of abacus. I have never thought about it before, perhaps because we have not had more than one in our shop at one time?).

The beads are colourful and old. One of the rungs has no beads, we are not sure if this is original or if they are missing. Perhaps one of my readers may be able to help me out?

This little size 0 Wedgwood mortar and pestle also came into the store during the week. It is such a little cutie!

A vintage hat box and faux crocodile suitcase. Both are in fantastic condition and have heaps of charm.

Chunky red leather riding boots with timber boot trees and a maker's label.

A Victorian period flour storage tin.

And a rare 19th century cow butter stamp. Butter was once hand stamped with these for decoration. And a cow motif just makes sense, I guess. Floral motifs are more common, but we also have a swan press at the moment.

These little copper pots actually came with our last shipment but they have only just been polished and put out in the store. They are an unusual tall shape and are overall quite small.

But my favourite piece? The abacus. Now I am off to do some counting...if only I knew how to use one.

I wish everyone a wonderful weekend. I am at the shop today, it is wet and gloomy here in Tasmania so I cannot imagine a better place to be!

Friday, February 10, 2012

great little cafe in our Derwent Valley town! cheeky little place...

Cheeky Little Place is a (little!) cafe that has been open for around a year in New Norfolk. Owner's Deb and Matthew have a passion for great local produce and are translating that into the quality and fresh food they prepare. It has become a local and visitor's favourite, that is for sure. And my personal favourite, too!

The interior is quirky and the blackboards list the beverages that are available, including good old fashion milk and thick shakes...not just for the little ones. There are stools at the bench in the front window, and some tables outside at the front and to the side of the cafe for alfresco dining.

A delicious vegetarian and ricotta tart is just one of the many savoury options that one can sample, along with gourmet pies, salads, sandwiches and a selection of other savoury pastries.

I can never resist the gorgeous sweets, from berry frangipane tartlets to gluten free choc hazlenut expresso torte. Yummy! And perfect with the great coffee they serve.

A selection of fruit and frangipane danishes...

I can't help but admire the careful presentation of these strawberry and cherry tarts. Definitely made with love and passion, wouldn't you agree?

Cheeky Little Place is a must stop little place whilst visiting the antique shops of my town, or stock up and go down to the Derwent river for a little picnic. The perfect day out!

Opening hours 8-4.30 Mon-Friday 9-4 Sunday. Closed Saturday. Burnett Street, New Norfolk.

Friday, February 3, 2012

the allure of French white porcelaine, china and linen

Image via Blossoming Visions

French white porcelain is dreamy. I think it looks great en masse like in the dresser, above. And the best part of such a collection? It is functional!

Image via min lilla veranda

The French china on the table setting above is divine! It is perfectly matched with the rough texture of the linen and grey painted table. We have quite a selection of French linen in the store at the moment, and I use it myself daily at home. I read somewhere that French people are often casual with their linen tablecloths, if there are creases, who cares? I like this philosophy...anybody else?

Here is a French tureen or soupiere, as they are called in France. Also, two French porcelain jugs, with swan neck handles and comports, one of a fluted design, the other two plain. All perfect for an elegant or casual table setting.

I am unsure what this French comport was used to serve. If anyone has any ideas, I would love to know. It may have been used for seafood, a sauce could have been placed in the middle and the seafood around the edge. But I am just guessing.

This very long French porcelain platter is stealing a lot of attention in the store. I think purely due to its size! I have pictured it with a sauce boat so that you may see just how long it really is. I imagine that it was once used to serve a whole fish. But it would look equally as good as a fruit platter, or as a fruit bowl on a long table.

Here is a selection of French porcelain sauce jugs, all a little bit different. I love the elegance of the swan neck handle of the jug on the left, the other jugs all have what appears to be a lion's head motif.

Ok, this piece is not all that practical, but isn't it divine?

It is a French lait pur or pure milk jar. I guess it could hold a posy of flowers?