By Alison April 18, 2007 13 Comments 4 Min Read


1. Bake a Gateau Breton and eat it with the first  decent (the smaller the better) strawberries of the season.

2. Paint your broom handle the colour of an Old Cotswold Legbar Hens egg.  (And watch the hencam while you are there!)

3. Fold a pretty teatowel in half and sew together. Make half inch hems either end and thread elastic through, before adding a ribbon loop and feeling virtuous because now you have a pretty place to store them, you have no excuse not to  recycle any plastic carrier bags that make it through your door.

4.   Line a few deep flat baskets in oilcloth and put them in the boot of your car ready for bringing home all the scrumptious bits of this and that you will find on  your Summer treasure hunts..

5. Make yourself a dolly peg lady. Wrap her in a vintage hankie. Add a paste brooch and lips with a cupid shaped bow and declare her Queen of The Laundry Room.

6. Spray your watering can ointment pink. Distress it till it looks fifty years old and make watering your plants an early evening ritual to savour.

7. Bake individual Spanish omelettes loaded with chorizo and leftover potato, (in a muffin tin) and serve them with a huge green salad and chilled white wine, for an early taste of Summer.

8. Chop up some old vintage scraps of embroidery and string together some bunting to hang along your washing line. It’s there. You might as well make it pretty. Oh and while we are on the subject keep an eye out for 50’s floral plastic covered hangers to leave swinging on your washing line for drying shirts and blouses without those bothersome peg imprints… 

9. Demote a blanket to garden duty and leave it folded in a basket near the back door for chilly Spring evenings outside. Allocate a garden pinny and hang it from a ribbon tied laundry peg on your doorknob.

10. Cover a scrapbook/photo album in something heartbreakingly gorgeous and resolve to record every scrumptious moment of another glorious Summer the old fashioned way…

11.  Recover your ironing board in a fabric that makes you smile. Out of pure laziness my cover is simply drawing pinned over the board. On warm days there is no reason why the whole caboodle, iron, linen water, extension lead et al can’t be dragged into the garden so you hang clothes straight onto hangers and let then waft about in the breeze, while you enjoy the gentle joy of sun on your face and watch kids unlikely to do themselves a damage while you are keeping your beady eye on them..

12. Sew yourself some new teatowels. Choose any cotton, linen or linen union fabric and if you don’t have a sewing machine, handstitch the edges et voila! instant freshness for your kitchen.

13. Line window ledges with crocheted doillies to keep your precious little seedlings warm on chilly nights.

14. Hang a Springtime wreath on your front door and watch passers by smile or tie big sashes of ribbon in happy bows around your chair backs and celebrate Spring all by yourself.

15. Plant teeny succulents in vintage teacups and colanders, and old tins, and teapots and child sized watering cans, and ummm, anything pretty really, then use them to fill the gaps between bigger containers in your garden.

16. Fill a great big white tin jug or bucket with gorgeous pink blossom, grasses and strands of ivy and place it on a tea stained crocheted tablecloth on your garden table.

17. Sew rick rack onto your little girls ankle socks. Or your favorite gingham pinny.  Or a pile of pure white handtowels. Soooo Springy

18. Loop a lacy tablecloth or shawl across your more utilitarian shower curtain.

19. Sew yourself a fabric envelope, use a vintage button to fasten it  and fill it with good quality white notepaper, envelopes, a little collection of pretty postcards, some stamps and a pen that isn’t an effort to write with, then climb into bed early in the evening and write somebody you love a Happy Spring card  or pour your heart  out in a letter you will never send.

20. Chill fruit tea in the fridge as you do your housework, then sit down with a pretty little cup and the morning paper as reward for scrubbing the bath so wonderfully well you can see your reflection in it.

21. Plant cress in broken eggshells and display in a fine little collection of glass eggcups on a sunny  windowsill.



  1. Kim says:

    o happy day! I love puttery treats! I don't know how you think of them, but I am glad that you do 🙂

  2. Phoenix says:

    I ADORE your puttery treats… we need them sooooooo much more often.

  3. Jennifer says:

    Such delightful ideas for such a rainy day here! Thank you for sharing.

  4. Oh. I need to mix in more puttery treats instead of all of the detritus of teenagers…video games, large skate shoes, towels on the floor and pizza boxes. I think I might start by painting my broom.

  5. June says:

    Lovely puttery ideas–celebrating the little things does indeed make a difference. Thank you!

  6. Carmen says:

    Oh, how I love your wonderful lists!

  7. Gena says:

    Oh Alison! you have made my day! I particularly like number 19 "pour your heart out in a letter you will never send" how utterly lovely! Thank you so much.xx

  8. Amy says:

    Great post!
    I noticed the links for the morning and evening housekeeping routines seems to be broken – any way of reposting those?

  9. sandi says:

    Oh, how lovely! You've done it again. I wish I weren't going away for the weekend so that I can get started! I love the idea of pretty baskets in my car. Hmm…what does a vintage housekeeper's car look like?

  10. Monique says:

    Great ideas, I really have to try some of them. How about cooking a lovely large pan of fresh vegetable soup ???
    You can see a picture of the pan I made this afternoon on my site !!
    Have a great day !!

  11. Where do you come up with these ideas?
    I wonder if there is such a thing as "putter envy"? Because if there is, I think I've got it!
    God bless.

  12. I adore every single one of your ideas!
    Cheers from Marrakech!

  13. Such lovely ideas for the perfect Spring day! The only trouble will be choosing!

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