The Brocante Blog

Life, Love and Vintage Housekeeping Online Since 2004

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Housekeeper's Diary sanctuary Apr 10, 2021

Today. A long call with my doctor and then a drive with Finn, to sit staring at the geese gathered like so many gossiping Mothers at the school gates, cooing at each other and gathering their babies into groups dotted along the coast line. Changeable weather. One moment sun cracking the flags....

Out With Lanterns Mar 23, 2021

I am all of us. I have been foolish. I have believed in things that weren't true and imagined myself capable of much that I am simply not. I have made bad decisions in the midst of struggles I was too ashamed to share. And tucked terrible things deep down inside me afraid of what would happen if...

Housekeeper's Diary authenticity Feb 19, 2021

Perhaps it is a sign of the times, this nostalgia for moments long gone I am experiencing. A reaction to the deep uncertainty I currently feel. Claustrophobia as a symptom of Covid. The longing to scream out loud my suppressed panic and run like Forrest Gump until I have managed to run away so...

Painted Stories bibliotherapy Feb 17, 2021


Rachel Ashwell is one of a trinity of women, that also  includes Sarah Ban Breathnach, and Cheryl Mendelson, that I credit with teaching me how to live, when I was a young homemaker, running an interiors business and trying to fathom who I was, and what really mattered to me.

I think...

The Girl Across the Lane authenticity Feb 10, 2021

A few weeks ago a new family moved into the old cottage across the lane. A typical family with two young girls and a happy little cockapoo, they moved in with an eyesore of a trampoline, a boat, and a boy-racer car so noisy it has become my morning alarm clock.

Over the years we have lived here...

Morning Melancholy wellbeing Jan 25, 2021

My Mum used to wake up in rather a bad grump. Mornings coloured her outlook on life and seemingly made it impossible for her to see the positives in her day until mid-morning when to all our relief she seemed to thaw her way back to loveliness. It was difficult to live with and something I was...

Housekeeper's Diary diary Jan 18, 2021

The oddest start to the year. I rather feel as though I must offer myself another New Years Eve on January 31st. A personal ritual instead of the obligation to be fun as we all stand together singing Auld Lang Syne in an empty lane - this little village apparently not familiar with traditions so...

On CottageCore, Hygge and Bohemia authenticity Dec 09, 2020

I've been trying to puzzle something out. I have joined groups and scoured hashtags in my efforts to understand, and honestly, I’m still bewildered because it seems to me that the women of the internet have suddenly developed a deep-rooted need not to seek true authenticity, but instead to...

Housekeeper's Diary diary Dec 09, 2020

A glorious morning. We go for a walk hand in hand, kicking leaves and talking the troubles of the world over. There is a peace about us now. The kind of peace that only comes with quiet resolution and I suppose a sort of emotional revolution. A settling in that feels astonishing after the...

Housekeeper's Knee authenticity Sep 28, 2020

Well now, one minute you are climbing out the shower minding your own business and the next the bathmat has scarpered and you have nearly split yourself in two with one leg in the bath and the other halfway across the bathroom with only a cold sweat and a screeching pain in the knee to show for...

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