Cassiefairy – My Thrifty Life

Cassiefairy's thrifty lifestyle blog – Saving money every day with DIY crafts, sewing projets, low-cost recipes & shppping tips


Breathtaking Valentine’s Day gifts + save 33% on flowers!

When you’ve not got much time and Valentine’s Day is fast approaching, the quickest and easiest option is to shop for gifts online. But that doesn’t have to mean you’re not putting any thought or effort into choosing a treat for your favourite person. Oh no, there are plenty of simply gorgeous gifts online that you just can’t get anywhere else and I’d love to show you what I mean…rose bouquet flowers gift blossoming gift valentines present-2rose bouquet flowers gift blossoming gift valentines present-5First up, I wanted to show you some of the unique gifts available on Etsy. As each item is hand-crafted or vintage, you can be sure that your other-half won’t have come across the gift before and it will be a true surprise. Okay, sometimes items are handmade to order, which adds a little extra time to the ordering process and it might have to be a Valentine’s Day ‘promise’ rather than something they can unwrap on the day. But who wouldn’t want to be given a note that reads “I’ve bought you a handmade gold pendant”?! I personally love all the textile crafts you can find on Etsy and these are some of my favourite heart-motif goodies.knitted heart scarf

Grey and pink knitted scarf by Grace Cook Knitwear

knit heart gloves etsyHand-spun alpaca wool gloves by Spinning Spider Webb

I love love love Maria Allen jewellery and this is one of her gorgeous Valentine’s Day designs. My bestie gave me an amazing personalised locket from Maria Allen for my birthday a couple of years ago and it’s my most cherished piece of jewellery. I can almost guarantee that this would be a winning gift for Valentine’s Day so feel free to use this blog post to drop a huge hint to your hubby ladies!etsy valentines locket marie allen gold necklaceAnd of course, it wouldn’t be valentine’s day without a beautiful bouquet of roses! Listen up hubby! There’s still plenty of time to order a bouquet online at Blossoming Gifts (where I got these sugar-pink blooms from). Ordering flowers online don’t have to be an expensive venture either; these bouquets are stunning yet not over-priced, starting at just £11.99. You can also find potted roses, lilies and orchids that will live on beyond Valentine’s day, plus many bouquets comes with a free gift, such as a box of chocolates or teddy bear. Plus you can save 33% on selected bouquets by using the discount code “BGIFTS33”, bonus!rose bouquet flowers gift blossoming gift valentines present rose bouquet flowers gift blossoming gift valentines present-4I was very impressed when the bouquet was Continue reading “Breathtaking Valentine’s Day gifts + save 33% on flowers!” »


My little vintage caravan – Bargain hunting & a beautiful bouquet

Happy Wednesday everyone! We’re halfway through the week and hasn’t it been a glorious one? We’ve been enjoying lovely weather here all week and have been able to get out into the garden to spruce up the veggie patch (blog post coming soon, promise!). Whenever the sun is shining, I head out to my little vintage caravan so I think you can probably guess where I’ve been working from this week. And of course, I always get distracted by all the fun things I can do in my caravan, so I’ve been snapping some photos rather than slaving over my laptop and wanted to share these with you today.roses bouquet of flowers vintage caravan_At the weekend I received a beautiful bouquet of roses from iFlorist. I couldn’t believe my eyes when I opened up the delivery box and such a huge bunch of gorgeous blooms emerged. I don’t think I’ve ever had so many roses in one bunch before!

Continue reading “My little vintage caravan – Bargain hunting & a beautiful bouquet” »

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Roses and Lilies

Today I just wanted to share a photo of a beautiful bunch of flowers I’m enjoying at home. There’s nothing better than having fresh flowers in the house; they brighten up the space, bring a focal point to the room and the smell of these roses and lillies is amazing!

pretty summer flowers - roses and lillies - by cassiefairy blog 2014

Hubby brought home the roses for me to celebrate my appearance in the local paper (see my blog post about it here) and a few days later he returned from picking up milk and bread at the supermarket with these lilies – which were reduced, despite the fact that most of the buds hadn’t even opened yet! That’s the kind of gift I like to receive from hubby – something thoughtful but thrifty! The roses had been marked down too, so my perfectly colour coordinated flower display only cost less than £4! They have already lasted a week and after a water change and stem trim, they are still blooming nicely. How silly that shops would think that flowers are ‘past it’ if a couple of buds have opened up, but how great that I can enjoy fresh flowers in my home for a tiny price! I’m always going to check the flower section in the supermarket from now on to see if I can find any more fresh floral bargains.


Thrifty fashion ~ On trend with cabuchons

Cabuchons are everywhere this year. I’d never even heard of the word until the start of the summer and now these little resin flowers, animals and bows are attached to every piece of jewellery, every accessory and even on mobile phone cases on the high street. I think they are cute and kitsch (I love anything plasticy!) and the colours are usually muted pastel tones, and I love faded, sun-bleached colours at this time of year! I want to add my own cabuchons to my accessories, such as these sunglasses below, to funk them up for the end of summer and get a little extra wear out of an old pair of sunnies. Plus, I want to get ahead of the trend and start adding cabuchons to my clothing too – so here are a couple of tutorials for adding these cute acrylic embellishments to your own fashion items:

1. I used super-super glue (or you could use a hot glue gun) to attach these cute cabuchon bows to the corners of my sunglasses – pretty simple, but just make sure you don’t try them on until the glue has completely dried/cooled otherwise you will get your hair stuck in the tacky glue! I got these resin bows from Wholeport but you can find cabuchons of all shapes and colours from online haberdasheries and in craft shops.

cassiefairy DIY fashion cabochon resin bows sunglasses and tshirt

2. I got an t-shirt in a floral print from the carboot sale (ready for autumn with the longer-sleeves!) but you can find similar tops ripe for embellishing in charity shops and online at Oxfam Online Shop. I chose some coordinating rose cabochon buttons and stitched them to the top at intervals around the neckline. You could use this same technique with buttons and could add the embellishments to the neckline of dresses, around the edge of cardigans or on collars to funk up your wardrobe for autumn.

Cassiefairy DIY fashion cabuchon resin roses tshirt

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Pieday Friday ~ Celebration cupcake bouquet

cassiefairy anniversary party cake decorating roses cupcakes

This week I wanted to share with you the photos of our fantastic anniversary party cakes so that you can get inspiration for your own celebration cakes in the future. I am very lucky to have a fantastic sister-in-law who is an amazing baker and can make any cake you can imagine! I was planning a basic traditional white wedding cake for our anniversary party but she suggested this gorgeous cupcake bouquet and I was thrilled when she offered to make it for us. I bought rainbow cupcake cases straight away so that they tied in the with party theme and the roses were piped onto the cupcakes using white cream-cheese icing and little green royal-icing leaves. I bought some terracotta pots and added polystyrene balls covered in green tissue-paper and the cakes were inserted into the balls using skewers and cocktail sticks to create the bouquet shape.

cassiefairy anniversary party rainbow wedding cake decorating roses cupcakes in terracotta pots

We also jazzed up the white wedding cake with rainbow dots – Smarties “glued” on with a small dot of piped-icing – such a simple but effective decoration. It made a really stunning display with the cake bouquets either size and it would have cost a fortune if  we had gone directly to a wedding cake shop (and I shudder to think how much each cupcake would have cost us!). I could never have created something so beautiful myself so I’m very grateful to Katie for taking on the enormous task of making enough cakes to feed all of our guests. Thanks Katie, you’re the best!

By the way… have you got your FREE copy of my Pieday Friday E-Book yet?? No longer will you have to search through my archives to find your favourite recipe – it’s all there in the book, and it not only contains pie recipes, but all of my favourites including soups and snacks, sweet treats and main meals! I want to give something back to my lovely readers so I’ve published it as a free PDF e-book as a ‘thank you’ for sticking with me all this time soooo…  Preview the entire E-Book here and email me and I will send you the PDF e-book directly to your inbox, completely free for you to download!


Vintage orange roses

My hubby brought home a bunch of stunning orange roses for me last week. I’d never seen orange roses before and they coordinate perfectly with my retro living room design, so hubby gets extra brownie points for good taste! I totally forgot to take a photo of them when I first displayed them in my Hornsea vase and now they are over a week old, withered and dried out.

vintage living room design retro orange roses

But that’s no reason not to photograph them and when I was snapping my pics I noticed that one of the bunch was still in absolutely perfect fresh condition. It’s amazing really – maybe that’s why all the others have wilted so quickly – this cheeky little rose was drinking up all the flower-feed for itself! Anyway, at least this gives you any idea of pretty and unique they were when they were fresh, and I kind of like the aged ‘vintage’ effect of these roses – the crispy, discoloured effect brings Miss Havisham from Great Expectations to mind, so they can stay displayed in the vase for a little longer…

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