It’s showtime!

HUNK startup showcase 11

So for the last 8 months I have been privileged enough to be a student on the second ever School for Creative Start-ups, run by ex-Dragon’s Den and serial entrepreneur Doug Richard. It has been an amazing experience, and given me (I hope) the tools and contacts to build a business around my creative ideas – and make money from them.

The year culminates in a showcase at Somerset House, so in March, I and my fellow students put on a show to the press, investors, buyers and le public.

My business is called HUNK, and I create gorgeous, colourful upcycled vintage furniture and home accessories. My beautiful and bonkers website is being built by the doozers as I type, but in the meantime, here are some images of my designs at the event…..

HUNK startup showcase 1

HUNK startup showcase 2

Upcycled 1950′s ‘Beautility’ rosewood table and chairs – lovingly reupholstered with cabbage rose linen and given some much needed colour with splash of neon peach gloss

HUNK startup showcase 3

Neon lime ‘Dalston’ table and chairs – 1960s drop leaf table

HUNK startup showcase 4

HUNK startup showcase 5

Handmade lavender + ylang ylang scented candles in vintage cut glass

HUNK startup showcase 6

HUNK startup showcase 7

HUNK startup showcase 8

Handmade pillowcases with felt lettering

HUNK startup showcase 9

HUNK startup showcase 10

Textile collage artworks in homage to my fave lyrics! On vintage French cotton, reworked vintage frames

HUNK startup showcase 12

HUNK startup showcase 13

HUNK startup showcase 14

I love these! Upcycled vintage stools with secret compartment

HUNK startup showcase 15

HUNK startup showcase 16

HUNK startup showcase 17

HUNK startup showcase 18

Aaaand studded leopard print doilies, obviously. Cos they are making a comeback ya know

Follow HUNK @hunkhome


Chai Time!

Oh I have been a busy bee. Really truly the last two months have been the most insane period of many recent years! I have been launching my new homewares label, exhibiting in a high-profile showcase at Somerset House (more of all that in a forthcoming post), and building Pinned it! Made it! – we now do Hen Parties, Corporate team-building, and have a website being built!

So all that lovely business being dealt with for the time being, and a four-day Easter weekend stretching ahead, I have finally found the time to BAKE, CRAFT AND BLOG!!

empty bottlesSo what is a girl to do when a recent craft party she organises yields lots and lots of empty glass bottles and she is unable to throw anything away? Simple, she finds a fun recipe to fill them with!

Chai tea syrup
(this makes about 1.2L as I wanted enough to give as presents to a few lucky gals….)

3L cold water
15cm piece of fresh ginger (unpeeled)
3 cinnamon sticks
30 cloves
20 cardamon pods
5 star anise pods
30 allspice berries
2 teaspoons whole black peppercorns
2 tsp grated nutmeg
3/4 cup tealeaves
3 cups brown/golden sugar
3 tbsp clear honey

Chai tea syrup ingredients

1. Combine all the spices and herbs (not the tea, honey or sugar) in the water and bring to the boil
2. Put the lid on, turn the heat down and let simmer on a low heat for about an hour and fifteen minutes
3. Take the pan off the heat and add the tea leaves. Allow to stew for 10 minutes max

Spices in pan chai tea syrup4. Sieve the mixture through muslin cloth, then pour back into the clean pan
5. Add the sugar and honey and replace on a low heat. Allow the sugar to dissolve
6. Bring to the boil and then turn the heat down and leave to simmer for an hour, possibly more. The mixture should have reduced down and taken on a thicker, syrupy consistency.
7. Meanwhile, place your bottles (lids off) in a cold oven. Turn the oven up to 180c and close the door. After about 20-30mins the bottles will be sterilised, but they can remain in the oven until the syrup is ready (never put cold liquid in hot glass or vice versa or the glass will crack)

Chai tea syrup sieving8. When ready, remove bottles with oven gloves and carefully pour the syrup in with a funnel.
9. Decorate, label, and store in the fridge! The syrup keeps for about 6 months.
Chai tea syrup bottled

Use the syrup with hot frothy milk to make a chai latte, shaken with vanilla vodka and ice for a chai tea martini, or blended with vanilla ice-cream and milk for a chai tea milkshake!


The London Art Fair

London Art Fair 2013 Bird bell jar2Nancy Fouts: Parrot with Grenade

The London Art Fair 2013

I went for a scamper around the London Art Fair this week, and was utterly inspired by what I saw….here are some of my favourite pieces (I giddily forgot a few of the artists so it’s rather an incomplete list! If you can fill in the blanks please message me!)

London Art Fair 2013 Butterfly Owl2Nancy Fouts: Butterfly OwlLondon Art Fair 2013 Chihuahua 2Butch Anthony, ChihuahuaLondon Art Fair 2013 Crucifixes 2Nancy Fouts CrucifixesLondon Art Fair 2013 Pixelated 2London Art Fair 2013 Queen 2Chris Levine: The Lightness of Being

London Art Fair 2013 Rabbit and Roses 2London Art Fair 2013 Skeletons 2Butch AnthonyLondon Art Fair 2013 Skull 2London Art Fair 2013 Specs 2

Neon crackers and buttered rum

Pinned it made it Christmas Cracker buttered rum and orange

December Pinned it! Made it!

Excuse the lack of posts recently, the last couple of months have been absolutely manic for me! I am really late posting this but still worth showing you all – some pictures from the Christmas Pinned it! Made it! at Hackney Downs Studios

The Craft: Neon Christmas crackers with jelly beans, jokes, glitter and dominoes inside
The Cocktail: Hot buttered rum
The Nibbles:  Cranberry-studded star mince pies

Pinned it Made it Christmas Crackers craft bitsPinned it made it christmas crackers craft bits polkadotsPinned it made it Christmas Cracker StarPinned it made it Christmas Cracker Pale blue crackerPinned it made it Christmas Cracker multicolouredPinned it made it Christmas Cracker mince piesPinned it made it Christmas Cracker Liberty paperPinned it made it Christmas Cracker instructions 2Pinned it made it Christmas Cracker gold threadPinned it made it Christmas Cracker girlsPinned it made it Christmas Cracker Emma and LouisePinned it made it Christmas Cracker dominosPinned it made it Christmas Cracker blue and red


We have had amazing response to the parties and this month my PiMi partner Plum scored us some killer press too (namely Timeout and LondOn the Inside!)

Pinned it! Made it! takes place the third Tuesday of every month at A-Side B-Side gallery, Hackney Downs Studios. Follow us on Twitter, Pinterest and like us on Facebook for more info, or email to join the mailing list!


PiMi launch!

We did it! The Pinned it! Made it! launch took place on Tuesday and it was great! After years of organising events and crafting in my spare time, this was the first time I brought together the two, and it turns out; if you pin it, they will come!

Some snaps from the evening…..

The lovely Lauren Baker lending us her mixology skills making up the gin and elderflower fizz cocktails (recipe HERE)

Our real pinboard for the night (cos although we’re Pinterest addicts we’re also lovers of the ‘real’ at heart!)

It was so exciting seeing everyone doing their take on the tutorial (courtesy of the amazing blog – we love those girls!), and whereas the idea of PiMi started out as a way for girls to do projects from their own boards, the first party showed just how popular the group craft idea was…..

Well done ladies, wear your collars with pride!

The next PiMi is on 18th December at A Side B Side Gallery, at Hackney Downs Studios. As it’s the start of party time, we’ll be making a big old glittery mess customising old shoes with glitter (and probably a few other things as well!), along with festive playlist, Christmas booze and nibbles! Have a look on our December PiMi board for inspiration.

To reserve your place just email


Pinned it! Made it!

I’ve been a Pinterest addict for a good 18 months now….it’s my kind of social media, I’m definitely into having a constant stream of inspiring ideas, recipes, DIYs, tattoo designs, hair styles to pick from, like an extension of my many to-do lists. The problem for me has been finding the time to actually make any of them!

About a year ago, a few of us Dalston Darlings decided to put aside some time each month to make some of the projects on our boards – we’d cook a dish from one of our recipe boards, or make a cocktail, and spend a sunday crafting, eating, nattering and making a big old mess! We sewed, we spray-painted, we added studs and jewels, we revamped old skirts, boyfriends’ shirts and naff old pairs of shoes and found the whole thing thoroughly addictive and satisfying!

Photo by Homemade by Hannah

We got the feeling we were onto something and so this autumn, my friend Plum and I decided we should open them up to all, and Pinned it! Made it! was born! We will meet once a month at Hackney Downs Studios, one of East London’s most dynamic creative spaces, and provide a space for ladies to do their own Pinterest projects, or to take part in that month’s group craft. For the launch I’ll be running a workshop on Peter Pan collars, inspired by all the amazing variations on Pinterest!

There will be jam jar cocktails and nibbles, (recipe from Pinterest of course!), music, inspiring women, the chance to make new friends, and above all, a quick craft-fix you can fit around a busy life! We cannot wait for the launch!

The response has been amazing, and we are almost at capacity….but if you want to get one of the last places, RSVP to

Date: Tuesday 20 November
Place: Hackney Downs Studios (A-side / B-side Gallery, Amhurst Terrace, E8 2BT)
Time: 7pm – 9:30pm
Entry: £7 (includes a Pinterest recipe jam jar cocktail and nibbles)
Group craft pack: £3 (or you can provide your own materials)

Follow PiMi on Pinterest and Twitter (and I’ll be posting pictures from the first party next week!)


Spiked milkshakes

Sometimes (mostly when it’s freezing outside) I want to chuck out all of my salad, fish and seeds and just EAT JUNK FOOD! This weekend was one of those times, when my Saturday night was spent recreating the Shoreditch Diner menu at home……homemade beef and stilton burgers, hand cut chips, onion rings, corn on the cob, coleslaw and about 3 variations on this boozey milkshake recipe….perfect for when you only have room for a liquid dessert.

Vanilla Bourbon Milkshake (serves 2)

4 scoops of good vanilla icecream (I used Green & Blacks)
1/2 tspn vanilla extract (I used Taylor & Colledge vanilla bean paste)
2 tbsp malted milk powder
2 shots of bourbon (I used Four Roses)
1 cup milk

Chuck it all in a blender, blend and serve, preferably with a stripy straw. Chocolate ice cream also works well, as does using fresh banana with the above recipe (minus the vanilla extract). Check out The Diner ‘Hard Shakes’ for more  recipe ideas.


Recipe and picture from Imbibe 


One of the reasons I have been a tad unproductive on the blog front recently is because I have had my head down working on something very exciting…..I’m not quite ready to reveal all just yet, but: I’M STARTING MY OWN HOMEWARES LABEL!!

Here are a few pics of some of my designs; all made from preloved, vintage furniture and textiles that I’ve primped up. Each piece will be unique and I’ll also be taking commissions. I cannot wait to get started, Im so excited to be finally creating something of my own and not spending 5 days a week infront of a computer.

This, by the way, is my Dalston inspired chair – neon dip dyed chair, metal studs and African print textiles.

Watch this space as I will be launching my website in the next few months!


Dalston Darlings Wardrobe!

Reasons to be excited about the upcoming Dalston Darlings WI Wardrobe on 3rd November:

1. I’m a hoarder by nature and have waaaaayyy too many clothes
2. I basically will NEVER get around the putting anything on Ebay
3. The chance to buy loads more clothes from my fellow Darlings!
4. Aside from festivals like Field Day and Apple Cart, it’s our first big stand-alone event
5. It’s at the fabulous Birthdays bar in Dalston which equals cocktails and Rita’s Patty melt and green chilli mac & cheese while we sell!
6. A whole afternoon with my Dalston Darling sisters
7. We’re raising money for our nominated charity Nia, a Hackney-based charity that prevents violence against women and children
8. There will be tea, cake and the chance to find out more about the W.I.
9. It’s free entry
10. The bar staff at Birthdays are H-O-T

So come on down for some bargains, we open at 12pm xxx

The seaside diaries – Rye weekend

I just unearthed a little stash of hipstamatic pics from a weekend break in Rye with the boyf squirrelled away from the days BB (before blog). Anyone that knows me or reads the blog regularly will know that we love nothing more than cobbles, cockles and crockery by the sea! I’m already pining for the summer so enjoyed this little flashback to warmer, longer days……

We stayed at the gorgeous Jeake’s House which was one of the loveliest little seaside B&Bs I’ve ever stayed at. Our room had a huge four-poster, there was an honesty bar, a myriad of gorgeous wallpapers and (most vitally) the breakfast is top of the pops – which is the best reason for staying in a hotel, non?