Wednesday, 28 October 2009

Hitting the Spot

I haven't been able to hit the spot with my usual readers recently. Comments have dropped off and I sometimes wonder if anyone is reading my blog. Anyway I will not be defeated!!! Hopefully there is something in this post to appeal to most readers.

I thought I would have a go at making some vintage or 'prim' coffee stained tags. There are many ways of doing this to be found on the Internet. My way was as follows:

  • Put a couple of teaspoons of instant coffee in a small cereal sized bowl.
  • Pour on a little boiling water to dissolve the coffee. Add some vanilla essence if you wish to do so.
  • When the mixture has cooled slightly, dip some cotton wool into liquid and then rub over tags and string.
  • Heat in a low oven for about 5 minutes and then repeat the process several times until you get the desired effect.
I left mine to dry overnight. The next day I stamped a greeting onto the tags.

I then stuck on some scaled down reproduction postcards. These tags could be further embellished with lace, buttons etc. Use your imagination! They smell yummy too!!!

A few years back I was lucky enough to be given my Nan's 'button boxes'.

I remember going through this tin as as a child. The contents are decades old as my Nan is in her late 90's.

As you can see, the tin doesn't only contain buttons!

Such an assortment of colours.

This is one of the smaller tins.

The contents inside are just as precious to me.

Look at all these fancy buckles.

All sorts of buttons from plastic to mother of pearl, leather to hand painted.

This mother of pearl button is a real beauty. Look at the size of it in my hand!

And if you thought that was big look at these ones!!!
I still have remnants of summer in my garden. The climbing rose continues to bloom.

This rose is called Compassion and it has a fresh lemony scent.

It has had a growth spurt this year and doubled in height climbing over the top of the arbour.

The violas have had a new lease of life too and are rapidly taking over the flowerbed.

The strongest autumn colour in the garden at the moment is Gizmo with his autumn coloured coat.


  1. I'm reading! And we have the same colourway in cat!

  2. Love the vintage tags will be giving that a go for sure they look great. I'd love to rumage through your nans old button tin, I bet there are some real beaties in there. Gizmo looks handsome as ever. xxxx Pixie xxxx

  3. Hi Simone! Oh it's been a while, I know.. If you don't know yet, I am in the last week before MOVING to a new home. This was a very sudden turn of events I never expected, so I am just hoping for the best, doing what I have to do, one day at a time! In the meantime, our dog Ubu is in a costume contest, so if you haven't voted yet, I hope you will put a vote in for our Frankenpooch!.. I LOVE your Christmas tags!! The little Santa ones are my favorite!!! I still have YET to try my hand at making tags!.. One of these days!.. Love all the buttons too! I have a good sized collection of MY grandmother's too! I'd bet we have many similar ones! They're such fun to look through, aren't they?!.. Gizmo is looking as cute as ever! I'm hoping the move this weekend is painless, done and over with soon, so we can feel back to some kind of NORMAL again! I'm looking forward to the holidays ahead! Maybe I can make some Christmas tags like yours!.. Talk to you again soon! ~tina

  4. Hi Simone, you're such a talented lady, your tags are very pretty! Oh and your garden looks great!

  5. Really, really sorry Simone ,I am reading it. I may have forgotten to leave a comment and I should have done.. I have been making Christmas tags myself this afternoon and I love your idea and will try it out.
    As for the buttons and buckles what a treasure trove. I went on a course from work a while back and we had to pick a button from a tiin and tell a story about the button. A bit mad I know but we all enjoyed doing the excercise. What stories your collection could tell!
    Gizmo is looking good. If he is anything like Harley he will be getting his winter coat.
    Anyway I promise I will try to do better in future with my comments x

  6. Well what a post!
    I love the tags-any off to the blogshop?
    The buttons, I know when you get things like these with a sentimental attachment you find it hard to part with them, why not make some bracelets? I could send you details??
    And the garden looks great, still summer there but Gizmo well what can I say? handsome chap!

  7. I'm still reading, Simone and I always enjoy visiting your blog and am always grateful for you visiting mine, too:) I loved playing in my grandma's sewing box and the draws of her treadle sewing machine - I would play for hours with all the buttons, bobbins and pieces of lace - no wonder your lovely collection is precious to you. I always wonder what happened to grandma's things. I see Gizmo is looking handsome as always.

  8. That button tin brings back memories - my mom had one and I used to love looking through it! And your Compassion rose looks lovely. My cousin bought me one earlier in the year and it did practically nothing except get lots of holes in the leaves!! I'm not very green-fingered!!

    Your Prim tags are great by the way - can almost smell them from here:0)

  9. Lovely mix of things the tags, and who doesn't love a button box, especially one handed down a generation ot two. That last button on the right, above the beautiful rose, looks suspiciously like a chocolate degestive to me...! Gizmo delights, as always. I've been absent from my own blog, and everyone elses!

  10. Simone, I just tried to email you but it says it can't go through! Nothing important but thought you should know incase anyone else is having trouble!

  11. Hi Simone,
    I have visited a few times but have never left a comment before now. I was going to suggest making some jewellery with your buttons, but Lyn got there before me! Your tags are fab!

  12. I love the gift tags, but you know what, I think I prefer them with the coffee stains and "Noel" on them, nothing else.
    And the buttons. I'm SO jealous!!! That box looks like it's full of treasure, it's fantastic!

  13. I read your blog. I always find it interesting and I always try and leave a comment. Buttons......! I love buttons, I find them tactile and interesting, I am always buying buttons just for the sake of it! I love those tags.

  14. I used to play shops with my Granny's costume jewellery box. I have a collection of old buttons and buckles, picked up from jumble sales over the years, of which I cannot part with. I like prim, and would like to sometime have a go at your tutorial. I think you would be surprised at home many visit your blog. Comments are down at the moment, but I put it down to the sudden blog explosion. Certain blogs have become the new favourites. Not to worry, carry on and blog what makes you happy. It's for you first and foremost. I like to visit your blog because you have original ideas. I've noticed a lack of this in the blogging world recently. That's a handsome photo of Gizmo. x

  15. Gosh, I love those vintage tags you made! I want some too!! :-)

    Will have to get myself a stamp and get busy. Could even make matching wrapping paper too?

    Have enjoyed reading your blog. My Mum also had a colorful button tin and as a child I delighted in all the various colors and distinctive button designs... quite a treasure box!

  16. Love the tags, I'm definitely going to give them a try. Aren't old tins wonderful, where would we be without our grann's hoarding habits. The buttons and buckles look to be a very colourful selection...lucky you have them for safe keeping. Eli

  17. hi simone,
    how lovely to have your nans's button tin... i especially like the buckles... just gorgeous! i still enjoy popping by and visiting your space here ... maybe your comments are low as everyone seems to be so busy.. i suspect a lot of folk read but don't always comment... i try to comment as much as i can as i know how nice it is to get comments but it's not always possible due to time constraints. like louise said... your blog is for you first and formost and blog with what makes you happy. have a happy hallowe'en
    warn wishes
    ginny x

  18. I had to pop back and tell you how much I love your tags, they are wonderfully nostalgic and I feel like trying out your 'recipie' and making a few of my own!

    Thank you for sharing!

    Love Julia xxx

  19. I can relate to the drop in readers/comments too..but it certainly looks like you have a healthy following :)
    love your vintage tags Simone..think I'll have to try some myself soon!...and the buttons....oh my they are lucky thing! Love the old biscuit tin too Gx


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