A splurge of colour!

With the work on our patio complete at last, it was time to make it look more beautiful.

We decided to divide it into two areas. The larger space was taken up by a round cast-aluminium table with a couple of solid chairs, perfect for the good old German tradition of a “Kaffeeklatsch” (tea/coffee with nibblies). On the other side, we created a cosy nook with two comfy wooden chairs and a small side-table, ideal for a peaceful cup of tea with a good book… and for Tuffy-cat to curl up on the second chair in the sunshine.

It took us a while to find the right seat cushions – not only did I want bright, cheerful colours, but they had to be comfortably padded for that extra bit of luxury, easy to wipe clean — and not prohibitively expensive. 🙂

Strong, vibrant colours

These are definitely strong, vibrant colours!

Finding the right – colour-matching – tablecloths took even longer. I visited about a dozen stores, and walked out again. All I could find were large rectangular cloths for a 6- or 8-seater table, or for small square side-tables. And all in bland, uninspiring non-colours of pale white and washed-out beige, more suited to a formal dinner table than an outside patio.

After three weeks of this, I played with the idea of making my own. Surely fabric painting wasn’t that hard? Well… I couldn’t even locate the right fabric in the size I needed… And I realised I would not just need to buy the paints, but also to ‘seal’ the fabric correctly, and to find and pay a tailor to stitch the pieces, and hem it neatly…

Suddenly, I remembered Carole Nevin’s store at the V&A Waterfront. She is famous for making the most gorgeous and radiantly colourful tablecloths, runners, pillow covers, etc. etc. I’ve often admired her work; everything she sells is very well made, strong, long-lasting, and simply beautiful. It’s also not in my price range, alas. However, as luck would have it, they had a sale on that week! So it was time to splurge a bit!

After lots of help from an excellent, friendly sales assistant with the beautiful name of Loveness, who patiently held up one of my seat cushions (I’d brought it along to make colour-matching a bit easier) to a range of different designs, I finally came home with these two stunning tablecloths. There’s certainly nothing shy and retiring, or bland and washed-out about these colour combinations! OK, I admit, they may be a bit too bold… but on a dreary winter’s day, they sure do raise the spirits!


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