63 - Mountains

13.2.15

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Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Snowdon
Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Ben Nevis
Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Ben Nevis
Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Scafell
Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Sigiriya
Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Cadair Idris
Alfies Studio Blog Post 63 - Mountains - Cadair Idris

Lately I've been getting out more, investing in some new clothes (I've become a little North Face obsessed...) to take me back to the old me and have enjoying putting one foot in front of the other.

I've always been a walker, always loved being outdoors and roaming for hours on end. The past couple of years I lost my way a little, drifted away from who I am and if I'm honest took a leave of absence from living at all during the dark times. Somehow now I feel like I'm back, I've returned to my former self and I'm done with surviving and ready to start living again, more than that, catching up on lost time and making it all count. I've been through the toughest, hardest, worst time of my life and feel like if I've been there and done all that I can somehow manage almost anything.

Being honest, over the past decade I've let myself go. The hardest part of fixing that is realising it in the first place. I'm walking around ten miles a week now (not including the general up and down and round the house which, being four storeys tall probably notches up a mile or two without even really trying) and determined to get fit enough to hike mountains again by increasing this little by little (along with turning that extra length in to extra altitude).

To see where I'm hiking (usually on Sundays) follow me on over on Instagram.

From top to bottom: Snowdon - Wales, Ben Nevis - Scotland, Ben Nevis - Scotland, Scafell - England,  and a couple I've already done: Lion's Rock, Sigiriya - Sri Lanka (not technically a mountain but uber cool all the same and a difficult "climb" up), Cadair Idris - Wales, Cadair Idris - Wales. These images are not my own and the original sources can be found by clicking through.

62 - Now at Workshop

15.11.14

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I have a new stockist that I am excited to share news of... I'm now stocked at WORKSHOP in Brighton. These guys have a truly wonderful aesthetic and seek to share their passion for items created with a simple approach to design and functionality. They believe in the little guys like me and have a beautifully curated store filled with well designed and crafted items.

You can take a look online at the edit of their store here or head on over to 13A Prince Albert Street, Brighton (my goods are available in-store only at the moment).










61 - Best Made Co

2.11.14

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This years extended summer weather seems to have brought with it a huge wanderlust for me. I'm itching to get out under canvas, learn some new skills, start fires from scratch with fire steels (I tried the friction/stick thing and am surprised we as a race are still here - how do I make it work?) and figure out survival skills that mean I can live outdoors without running to the car or rucksack every five minutes for forgotten this's or that's to get by with.

At the very first Good Life Experience I learnt of a brand that will feed my every desire for camp related articles - Best Made Co. The only draw back, they are NYC based (but luckily being stocked in store at Pedlars). In their own words "Best Made Company® is dedicated to equipping customers with quality tools and dependable information that they can use and pass down for generations. We seek to empower people to get outside, use their hands and in doing so embark on a life of fulfilling projects and lasting experiences".

They create just about everything that's on my mind at the moment. With autumn/winter edging its way in I am secretly hoping that a hand axe/hatchet will be under the Christmas tree this year for chopping the pain-in-the-behind bits of wood that are too big to fit in the burner (and generally feeling bad-ass about owning an axe) and feeling the need for a cosy blanket or two to layer up on the bed that remind me of nights spent under canvas.

All items below available from www.bestmadeco.com. I kick myself for not buying their "Maps" notebook when I had the chance with true thing of beauty that it is and have never felt particularly lusty over a first aid kit before, until now. Best Made Co really do live up to their name it seems.










Just to be clear - I like to share brands that I think are particularly spectacular and may be of value to you. This post is not sponsored or paid for in any way shape or form.

60 - Hello Pedlars!

28.10.14

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Pedlars Friday Vintage
Old Wooden Signs from Pedlars Friday Vintage
Instruction sign on an Airstream
Adventures in colour with Pedlars
Duralex Glasses at Pedlars

When I bought my first house it quickly became filled with Ikea and Homebase furniture in an effort to create what I thought was a cohesive and grown up look (I'd just turned 24, I didn't know any better). We'd gotten married earlier that year and I guess I wanted to feel like I'd arrived somehow. As years have gone by, the Ikea and Homebase have been purged (all except for the Pax wardrobe that is actually wedged in between the wall and fireplace, and I plan to get an axe to it early next year) and slowly as our family has grown, we are shaping up to be a household of doers who don't really value "stuff" that highly, but do love what we have to tell a story.

I was strolling through the Trafford Centre Selfridges one day, I think Dominic was just a baby at that point. Pedlars caught my eye, I remember them being a lifeline in a surrounding sea of perfect blah... I can't quite remember exactly what it was that caught my eye, but I've been hooked ever since. That point in life was somewhat of a re-birth for our family. After a false start and a lot of grey days and beige thoughts, colour slowly seemed to creep back in. It seems somewhat poetic that 5 years on I'm now not only stocked by Pedlars, but have been collaborating with them on neon screen printed Christmas cards (available here).

Pedlars (all products chosen by founders, Charlie and Caroline Gladstone) have an eye for blending old with new and picking products that will become (or at least reflect) the fabric of your life. New goods are brought to you because they are the very best of their kind and built to last, with Pedlars often collaborating on items to get them just so (check out their new Signet Pencils here). Their Friday Vintage selection brings the most excellently collected vintage items from across the globe. I have a lovely set of vintage arrows that are waiting to be mounted and hung that serve as a reminder of my Hunger Games fetish and 31st Birthday doing archery with my family and a "Come in, We're Open" sign that I plan to hang on the door to the office of my "campsite" one day. I have my eye on their stripy fleece blankets that will become part of our growing camping kit as we begin our overnight outdoor adventures (now the littles are not so little that I'm afraid of them freezing to death camping anymore). I have every faith they will continue to seek out and sell products that become part of my narrative and I'm so very proud to be stocked by them. Hello Pedlars...

All images taken from pedlars.co.uk

59 - Camp Dreams

25.10.14

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I've felt a funny sort of grumpy today, not quite comfortable in my seat and a bit fidgety.

As I begin to start to "get Christmas online" my mind drifts off to a small meadow surrounded by tall trees with a lake off to the side and a great area almost like an amphitheatre with a camp fire in the middle of it. There are tents and lodges scattered through the trees and an area that has large chunks of wood and assorted branches and bits to build dens and climbing things with. Theres a lodge near the main entrance that has a grand entrance hall that can be used for gatherings and to the side, a glass house for growing produce that can have the plants moved to the edge and also be used for gatherings. A sort of multi-function-roomed hotel for people who hate hotels and love being outdoors, to gather and celebrate, and mostly, just be at. There are bushcraft and archery lessons, camp fires for each "pitch" as well as a central one for gathering, a little shop that sells recipe boxes and camping essentials. A tree house that you can sleep in. Theres a family that runs it, they are some of the cheeriest people you could ever meet. They are living their dream and love adventures.

Then I drift back to whats on my screen and begin to look for land to make it real. We are that family, and that is our dream (and it's not just a passing fad, its been in our heads and hearts growing steadily for seven or eight years now). I have no idea if we'll ever end up living it (I'd like to think so, but for every ounce of enthusiasm there seems to be 3lbs of red tape and laws about permitted use, planning etc), but in the mean time, a girl can dream...








Top two images from the fabulous Wood and Faulk and the rest from Camp Wandawega which may be one of the most swoon worthy places I've ever laid eyes on...

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