Wednesday, November 30, 2011

A Weekend Bike Ride

The most beautiful discoveries are often made by chance and are best shared with someone close. Packing a light hamper and setting out for a romantic day exploring the countryside just may lead to the unexpected. On past adventures, casual meanderings have lead to beautiful waterfalls, inspiring art galleries, quaint tea houses and idyllic picnic spots Guided by nothing more than a sense of curiosity, you can follow whatever path pleases you. The countryside has an uncanny way of leading to the most wonderful places. 


Images via 1, 2, 3, 4, 5

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Vintage White

I love the old world charm of vintage pieces - things that tell a story and add character and warmth to a house. Ever since I was a little girl I have always loved fairy wings, tutus and satin ballet slippers so I am loving these vintage versions. Starting off my career as a fashion designer, I also love the vintage calico dressmaking mannequins from when couture was at it's peak. A few of these quirky vintage finds dotted around the home will give it personality and a sense of style that is unique to it's owners. 


Images via Vintage and Morrhar check it out for some heavenly Swedish inspiration!

Sunday, November 27, 2011

My Secret Garden

Spring is one of my favourite times of year when the birds are chirping, the bees are busy making honey and the fields are golden with flowers. It's the perfect time to give the garden some much needed love and attention after being somewhat neglected over the winter months. Nothing is more inviting than the garden in springtime when the grass is green and fragrant, the trees are bursting with new growth and the flowers are blooming. It's a perfect spot for late brunch on a sunny day or an afternoon nap under a shady tree!

Melissah xox

Images via 12, 3, 4, 5

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Sunday Picnic

Sundays are a perfect opportunity to veer off the beaten track in search of a pretty meadow or a river bank basking in the day's welcoming sun. Settle in among the daisies swaying gently in the breeze and let the hours unravel over delicious home baked goodies and lazy conversation. Go for a wander and skip stones in the river before the winding country road lures you back to city life and the working week!

Melissah xox

Images via 1, 2, 34, 5 

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Hot House Flowers

Today I am loving these romantic dresses ~
so pretty and feminine.
Perfect for spring with layers of
ruffles, chiffon and lace.

Melissah xox

Images via Olivia Graham

Check out Country Style Chic on tumblr and Pinterest

Monday, November 21, 2011

Shabby Chic

The beauty of imperfections, the allure of well loved time-worn objects, and the appeal of simple practical living are the trademarks of the 'Shabby Chic' brand. Flea market finds, vintage pieces, hand painted furniture, faded velvets, old lace and mismatched floral china - things one might find in your grandma's attic, are all synonymous with the Shabby Chic label. Designer Rachel Ashwell founded Shabby Chic in 1989 on the philosophy of beauty, comfort, and function. She set up her first store in  California and has since gone on to write a series of books and open up lifestyle stores throughout the world.
Having followed Rachel from the beginning, she has had a huge influence on me as a designer. Although my design work is now more modern and stream lined I still love the prettiness, femininity and rustic charm that is associated with the shabby chic label. 

Melissah xox

Images via Shabby Chic

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Old Fashioned Apple Pie

Ingredients (serves 8)

  • 1 3/4 cups (260g) plain flour
  • 1/2 cup (75g) self-raising flour
  • 185g unsalted butter, chilled, cut into small pieces
  • 1/3 cup (75g) caster sugar
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tbs milk
  • Demerara or caster sugar, to sprinkle

·         Filling

  • 8 large Granny Smith apples
  • Juice of 1 lemon
  • 45g unsalted butter
  • 1/2 cup (110g) caster sugar
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground cloves


1.      Sift flours and a pinch of salt into a large mixing bowl. Add butter and rub lightly into flour with your fingertips. Lift mixture high above the bowl as you rub, to incorporate air into the pastry and make it lighter. Continue until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs, then stir through sugar. Lightly beat 1 egg with 1 tablespoon chilled water, then drizzle over flour mixture. Start to bring the dough together by cutting the liquid into the dough with a blunt knife, then form into a smooth ball with your hands, adding a little more water if necessary. Divide dough into two pieces, one slightly larger than the other. Wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes.
2.      To make the filling, peel and core the apples, and cut each into 8 pieces. Toss immediately with lemon juice in a large bowl, to prevent apples from discolouring. Place the butter and sugar in a large frypan over medium-low heat. When butter has melted, add apples and spices, then stir to coat. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until apples have softened. Set aside to cool.
3.      Roll out the larger pastry ball on a floured workbench to a 30cm circle (about 2mm thick). Roll pastry around rolling pin, then unroll over a 22cm metal pie dish. Gently press into corners and allow excess to overhang. Place filling in base with a slotted spoon. Roll the small pastry piece to a 25cm circle. Beat remaining egg with milk, brushing some on rim of the base. Top with small pastry.
4.      Lift the pie dish and cut excess pastry from edges with a sharp knife. Crimp edges of pastry together with your fingers. Chill for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 180°C, place pie dish on a baking tray. Brush top of pie with more beaten egg, sprinkle with demerara or caster sugar. Cut four small air vents in the centre of the pie and bake for 45 minutes or until golden brown.

Here's a lovely old fashioned apple pie recipe, just the like one your grandma used to make!

Melissah xox

Image,  recipe via Taste

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Butterfly Dreaming


Images via Creature Comforts

These last few days my garden has been a mass of the prettiest tiny white butterflies dancing all over the flowers. It was a very romantic vision until someone told me they are in fact cabbage moths and will strip my garden bare if I'm not careful! With this influx of pesky little moths I have also seen lots of the beautiful Monarch butterflies on my daily walk. To see seven or eight on these beautiful  orange, yellow and black winged creatures sitting on a single branch is a heavenly sight. I fancy myself in a long floaty dress skipping around with a butterfly net catching these pretty things but somehow I doubt if I'll find the time!

Melissah xox

Images via 1-5, 6, 7

Friday, November 18, 2011

Autumn Leaves


Autumn brings with it so many little pleasures. Drives to the country to see the kaleidoscope of changing colours. Walks in the park amidst falling autumn leaves followed by frothy cappuccinos in quaint little cafes. Then there's the fabulous fall fashions warm coats, Italian leather boots and designer scraves, make mine a Burberry this year - perfect colours for Autumn days .It's a great time of the year for indoor activities and creative projects. It's quiet time to sort through photos and magazine clippings, plan holidays, finish off books and dabble in some artwork. It's a lovely time to reflect on the beauty of nature before hunkering down over winter.  

Melissah xox

Images via 12, 34, 5

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