Monday, 2 December 2013

My crazy busy life ...

Phew, what a week that was! I'm a bit glad it's over and done with, I couldn't cope with all that malarkey for very long, I don't think ... I got the keys for my little shop, Thriftwood Vintage, 11 days ago ... and opened 7 days later! That week was spent lugging furniture, stock and all manner of things to the shop at the crack of dawn (before the hairdressers below started work, because I didn't want to be jeopardising their customers) and after tea, late into the night. But I did it ...

I bought a bright orange pine plate rack from a furniture warehouse, and after we had been delayed by half a day by a very inconvenient power cut, Steve drilled it to the wall for me ... and that was my starting point.  I then painted it very quickly with Annie Sloan Country Grey, and filled it with vintage loveliness and fairy lights.  The decor in Thriftwood Vintage is a bit gloomy, and with no time to paint I decided that 'mood' lighting was a must! So lamps and fairy lights have made a big appearance ... my home is looking very sparse now!


A Christmas corner has been created, complete with tree, ice skates, stockings and a pile of vintage toys and games under the tree.

I have had to be inventive in maximising display opportunities ...

The green garden bench has also been giving a new home for the time being! 

Mince pies, carrots and a message for Santa ...

But best of all were all the lovely customers, friends and family, who dropped in to say hello ... thank you so much for all your good wishes, they mean so much to me!  Everything happened so quickly that I didn't have time to think and now my old friend Doubt is creeping in ... I know I've done the right thing because this chance will never happen again, and I would have always had regrets if I hadn't taken the plunge and forever wondered "what if?", but I wouldn't be me if I didn't worry ... really I have nothing to lose at this stage, and if I do decide it isn't working, I can just pack it all up again ...  I really hope that doesn't happen though.

As if that wasn't enough excitement for one week, me and Millie set off on Friday to Harrogate to The Country Living Fair.  I have a new phone that I haven't quite got the gist of yet, so am just using it for Facebook on the run, and taking photos ... I think I've managed to download one so for now that's all you're getting, my lovelies!

Rachelle & Tracy

For the second time I met blogging royalty Rachelle from Ted & Agnes blog and Tracy from Olive and Harry blog (combined, their stall was called Olive and Agnes).  We had arrived there too late to book onto their Liberty wreath making session, but when they'd finished we found their delightful stall, full of their unique bits and pieces. We had a lovely chat about crocheting, sewing, dogs,  my new shop (Rachelle had seen me mention it on Facebook!) Rachelle's new book, and of course, her last book ...
Thank you Amazon! 

It really was like chatting to old friends, they were so lovely, even though I was a little starstruck and giddy, and when we walked away, Millie said "that's made your day hasn't it?" and do you know, I think it had ...

I really need to get back to earth with a big bump, and start sorting out Christmas ... I hope you all have a quiet, peaceful week, and don't forget, if you're in the area, there'll always be a big welcome at Thriftwood Vintage!

Thriftwood Vintage
221 Rawlinson Street
(above Hairport)
Cumbria LA14 1DW

Opening Times
FRIDAY 10-4.30PM

Have a wonderful, peaceful week, my lovelies ... looking forward to catching up with you all!

Love, Claire xxx


  1. It's so exciting to see your shop up and running. It looks wonderful, so pretty. I love the fact you've improvised with your personal items from home. Ignore the doubt sitting on your shoulder. Brush it off, I'm sure your shop will be a great success. Lucky you I would love to go the the Country Living Fair. It sounds like you had a wonderful day and well deserved after your hard work. Have a lovely week (with lots of sales).
    Ali x

  2. Wish I live in Cumbria........ Good luck with your new shop
    Julie xxxxx

  3. Oh it all sounds and looks wonderful, I wish I was close enough to drop in!

  4. Good luck with your shop. It looks lovely and cosy.

  5. Well, it does indeed sound as if things have been a little crazy Claire, but good too! Everything is looking very pretty and I love the idea that you have decorated with fairy lights and things. I hope that it is a great success. Only one downside, you are too far away for me to visit! xx

  6. My in-laws live in Kendal do next time we are over to see them I will endeavour to find you. Looks lovely! Hope you do really well. Eleanor xx

  7. You busy bee! It looks so fantastic and I only wish I lived closer! Good luck with this venture and happy decorating! XX

  8. Hi Claire,congratulations on Thriftwood Vintage,it is so very exciting isn't it?I wish you lots of good luck and lovely customers,how I wish I could visit!but I'll enjoy reading updates on your blog,please can we have some "real" photo's to get a clearer view?'bye for now Pam.

  9. Hi Claire many congratulations on the opening of Thriftwood Vintage!It is so very exciting,I wish you good luck and lots of lovely customers,I wish I lived nearer but will content myself with watching the updates on your blog.Please can we have some "real" pictures though to see your things more clearly! 'bye for now Pam.

  10. Well done ... it all looks gorgeous ... and lovely to hear you has such a great day out at the fair ... Bee xx

  11. Claire it all sounds a little scary but wonderful too. Sometimes we are given a great opportunity that takes a lot of nerve to take it up but you have grabbed it with both hands and are giving it your best shot. I wish you well and hope its all a wonderful success for you. I wish I lived near enough to pop by and say hello!

  12. Congratulations, and very best wishes.

  13. Your shop looks so lovely, it's amazing what you managed to achieve in such a short time. I wish Cumbria was closer!
    Sarah x

  14. Well done Claire, you've obviously worked very hard to achieve your dream. I'll try to pop in at some point! xxx

  15. oh noooooo i wish i had known it was you at CL fair as i love your blog - i would have given you a big hug!
    sadly the time and effort and putting up with the awful organisation of the fair makes having a stand not financially viable for me even though i LOVED doing the demo's as we laughed so much, but there is a very very good chance that rachelle will be back to do demo's next year for her new book so all is not lost!
    will definately pop in to your shop if i am your way as it looks and sounds great x
    thank you so very much for your kind words and pic it truly does mean a lot to me xxx

  16. Dear Claire,

    So wonderful that you have opened your shop and want to wish you all the very best for it. What a gorgeous looking shop and love everything you have in it.
    Just wish I lived nearby.
    Sending hugs and hope that you have a great week

  17. How exciting! You're really making your mark on the world.

  18. Hi Claire, Wish you lots and lots of luck with your new venture. Jacqui

  19. Bravo, Claire!
    From across the pond,
    I am cheering you on :)
    Gracie xx

  20. ~ Morning Mrs Thriftwood! Will try and pop in ASAP! ~ It all looks so cosy and a lot like your lovely home...Wishing you a ringing till and lots of jolly christmasy folks through the door! Bet you are playing Nat king Cole too! hehe...With twinkly hugs...Maria x

  21. well done for going for it! no time to doubt, best way. Enjoy the experience whatever. Heather x

  22. Oh such big congrats to you dearest Claire....and lots of luck and love too....Daisy xxxxx

  23. That's so exciting. A shop of your own! Best of luck with it all, I'm sure you'll do really well. x

  24. Well done on opening your lovely vintage shop! It sounds like you are a natural at shop styling! Love the ideas you had and the lovely Christmassy feel of it all. Wishing you a wonderful week.
    Helen x

  25. Hello Claire
    How busy are you..The shop sounds and looks wonderful full of so many treasures.
    I have been making the house festive today so I am worn out too..(moving things about)
    Hope you have a good week
    Thea x

  26. Wonderful news about the shop! I'm sure it will be a roaring success. And I know where to visit next time I pop up to see Sally in Ulverston :D

  27. Oh Claire I am so pleased you have a shop now...and better still it will be practically on my doorstep should our move to Cumbria come off next year. Can I put my name down now for being a regular customer? Philippa xx

  28. Congratulations on the opening of your shop Claire! I hope it will be a great success! The photo's you show us of the interior look lovely!

    Wishing you a lovely weekend ahead!

    Madelief x

  29. This is wonderful Claire ... I'm so glad you got the shop all sorted out and the customers are now coming through the door. Even though it was a ton of work getting set up, I'll bet you really enjoyed yourself too. I recognized the green bench right away and it made me smile ;) Good for you in making the place cheery with the fairy lights. I'm sure you've been looking at the space & planning what to change when you've had a break from customers. So exciting!! Take care, Wendy xox

  30. Hi Claire should be really proud of yourself have tried so hard and your shop is real cosy ! I'll be popping in to see you again . I bet the Harrogate show was fabulous ..lots of inspiration exciting ! Have a lovely weekend...Gail x

  31. Your dream is mine too, Claire,
    that's nice that you're successful. I'll
    a thousand wishes that everything goes great!
    Love Suzy x

  32. I was watching The Paradise the other day and I am quite sure that they mentioned that a rival establishment had opened up called 'Thriftwood Vintage' . How wonderful - are you sure you are busy enough!!!!
    I wish you all the best - onward and upwards dear!
    Best wishes


I love to hear what you think of my ramblings and value all your comments ... I will try and get back to you, but am sorry if I don't always manage this ... sometimes real life just gets in the way! Claire xxx