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TA K I N G T I M E T O L I V E W E L L

October

Good times

Candles, card games & DIY pizza Autumn glamping An afternoon at a vineyard

F O R AG E

Wisdom from the woods • Chalkboard art • Secrets of the sewing box Soul cakes & smoked toffee apple bourbon • How to stay curious A Danish forest retreat • WIN lovely things from Anthropologie


October

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Dreaming of a house in the forest

Serving up a Samhain feast

FRESH

LIVING

ESCAPE

08 OCTOBER THINGS

22 SIMPLE STYLE

64 MY CITY

24 SEED TO STOVE

70 FOOD FROM AFAR

Your essential guide to the month ahead, from stylish product picks to the best new books

16 THINGS TO PLAN & DO

Make the most of your Sunday, build a box for a hedgehog and forage for food

The effortless chic of the pea coat Lia Leendertz begins a new series celebrating ancient festivals with harvest cooking on her plot

32 CHALKBOARD ART

How to write well on a blackboard

36 WISDOM

Ben Law shares what he’s learned from building a house – and a life – in the woods

Canada’s lakeside city, Toronto Arancini, little Sicilian balls of rice

72 OUTING

Hit the bottle: days out at wineries

76 CAMPING

Autumn glamping and campfire cooking

44 BEYOND THE NINE TO FIVE

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Old-school advertising

Sally Francis on growing saffron in Norfolk

45 LEARN SOMETHING NEW Foraging for mushrooms

46 GATHERING

DIY pizzas, craft beers and card games

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Perching on a beautiful stool

54 EXPERT

Pumpkins and squashes – not just for Halloween

59 CAKE

Mandarin, pear and ginger cake

60 MY DAY IN CUPS OF TEA

Print designer Ali Murphy’s day in cuppas

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THESIMPLETHINGS.COM


CONTENTS

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46

Gathering nuts

Enjoying cards-and-pizza night

THINK

106 GROWING

79 A POETIC PAUSE

111 WEEKEND PROJECT

To My Daughter in a Red Coat by Anne Stevenson

80 WELLBEING

Why going slowly helps you appreciate art

83 CALM

Design your own tattoo – real or imagined

84 LOOKING BACK FRONT COVER: DIETLIND WOLF/TAVERNE AGENCY. BACK COVER: KATHARINE DAVIES

The women who made it to the moon

88 GALLERY

Vintage adverts, from milk to mops

94 IDEAS

Has the internet helped or hindered curiosity?

95 TRADITION

Putting the clocks back

NEST 97 FLOWERS IN THE HOUSE

The delicate discs of autumnal Honesty

98 HOME TOUR

A fairy-tale home in a Danish forest

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TA K I N G T I M E T O L I V E W E L L

Flowers on the table for Christmas – now’s the time How to make a besom broom

October

112 COLLECTOR

The man who owns almost 1,000 pizza boxes

today

!

Good times

Candles, card games & DIY pizza Autumn glamping An afternoon at a vineyard

116 HOME TRUTHS

How we really live at home. This month: advice on settling in a new pet

120 POSTCARDS FROM THE HEDGE

Mark Diacono is pressing apples and tasting wine

122 HOME STYLE

F O R AG E

The practical delights of the sewing box

MISCELLANY 123 A curious combination of the practical and

the playful: uses for your Halloween pumpkin, how to cut your own hair, the anatomy of a mushroom and the power of herbs. Plus #dogsinblankets and our caption competition

130 BEDTIME STORY

Once we Lived Beside a Lake by Catriona Ward

Wisdom from the woods • Chalkboard art • Secrets of the sewing box Soul cakes & smoked toffee apple bourbon • How to stay curious A Danish forest retreat • WIN lovely things from Anthropologie

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO US! WE’RE THREE YEARS OLD THIS MONTH. If you’re new to The Simple Things you can buy back issues (with free UK postage) at icebergpress.co.uk/shop Save 26% when you subscribe. See page 82 Looking for a Christmas gift subscription? Our special offer is on page 110 l l

ON THE COVER

PINTEREST.COM/SIMPLETHINGS

INSTAGRAM.COM/SIMPLETHINGSMAG

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Prep set | £64.99 A six-piece bowl and colander set to cover all your cooking and baking bases. falconenamelware.com Charlotte cape | £159 Channel Little Red Riding Hood in this natty, wearable cape.boden.co.uk Woodland cushion | £28 Bring the colours and leaves of autumn to your very own sofa. cathkidston.com

THINGS TO WANT AND WISH FOR For forest-inspired finds, try these leafy woodland desirables foraged by LOUISE GORROD

LOUISE GORROD Our Wishlist Editor, Louise, is also our Stuff of Life shopkeeper (shop. thesimplethings.com). Look out for this symbol for items in the shop. She also blogs, bakes and photographs at Buttercup Days: buttercupdaysuk. blogspot.co.uk.

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Affonso stool | £225 Hand made from white ash: rustic and sculptural all at the same time. Could also be a bedside table. liamtreanor.co.uk

Household scissors | £15 Made of steel with wide, leather-wrapped handles, these Home Address scissors are useful and good-looking. shop.thesimplethings.com


FRESH | OCTOBER THINGS

Light | £22; copper look bowl | £5; tasselled throw | £25; check duvet cover | £30; check throw | £16 Over-sized plaid – just the thing for a cabin feel. sainsburys.co.uk


T U M N A U 31

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Feb 1

T E R W I N

LAM MA S Aug

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SAM HA IN Oct

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S O h 21-22 c ar M RA TA

M M E R S U

BON A M 2 19-2

May 1

BEL T A NE

S P R I N G

S E E D T O S T OV E IN THE FIRST OF A NEW SERIES BASED ON SEASONAL FESTIVALS, LIA LEENDERTZ SERVES UP A SAMHAIN SUPPER OF POTATOES, BEANS, SOUL CAKES AND TOFFEE APPLE BOURBON Photography: KIRSTIE YOUNG

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’ve long been vaguely aware of the old agricultural festivals that once marked the year: Mabon, Lammas, Yule and Beltane among others. The festivals told our farming ancestors when it was time to sow, reap, stop and take stock, in days when good timing meant survival. One of the reasons I love my allotment is that it ties me to the seasons. They are impossible to ignore there, unlike at home, cushioned by walls, computer screens and central heating. And so I have come up with a plan to mark each of these festivals with

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a small moment of my own at the plot, eating food connected to the festival or the season, and carrying out a little act of celebration. There are eight festivals. They are often pictured as a wheel, anchored by midsummer, midwinter and the spring and autumn equinoxes, and with the four points that fall between them known as the cross-quarter festivals. Some of these have become more familiar celebrations – May Day, Halloween, Easter. Others remain obscure, but each has a role to play in marking the turning of the year.


LIVING | SEED TO STOVE

Curly kale is abundant this month. Lia puts it in Colcannon baked potatoes (see page 29), which can be cooked on a bonfire

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NEST | WEEKEND PROJECT

LO O K W H O ’ S C H A L K I N G THESE SIMPLE TIPS LIBER ATE THE BL ACKBOARD FROM THE CL ASSROOM 2

Compiled by: FRANCES AMBLER 1

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halkboards have so much more potential than just recording the daily specials or children’s homework tasks. Chalkboard art is something of a lost skill (take a look at thesimplethings.com/blog/ chalkboardart for some amazing, turn-ofthe-century examples), but has irrefutable appeal. It’s inexpensive, easy to correct and undeniably show-off-able. Don’t let less than perfect handwriting stop you from giving it a go. Valerie McKeehan devised these projects for the gorgeous The Complete Book of Chalk Lettering, but says her own handwriting is poor. She advises, “Instead of thinking about a letter as a letter, think of it as a shape. This simple mind-shift can have a profound impact.”

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Prep your chalkboard Before you begin drawing, ‘season’ your chalkboard. Simply rub the side of a piece of chalk over the chalkboard until it’s completely covered, and then wipe it clean with a cloth rag to prepare the surface for handling chalk. If you don’t do this, chalk can ‘burn’ into the surface of an unseasoned chalkboard, leaving a permanent mark.

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WHAT YOU’LL NEED: 1 Good old-fashioned chalk Try Crayola Anti-Dust Chalk (from hobbycraft.co.uk). Despite its name, it creates dust, but that’s a good thing! Just blow lightly on the board to remove specks. 2 Eyeliner sharpener or 3 Pencil sharpener Use any with two holes to sharpen your chalk; the larger one will fit perfectly. Sharp chalk makes for a more precise line. 4 Tape measure 5 A ruler or any other straight edge. 6 Cotton buds Useful as they give you precise, ninja-like erasing abilities. 7 Cloth rag A piece of old washcloth will do. Used damp or dry, it will remove any unwanted dust entirely. 8 Eraser A felt eraser will remove the lettering.

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How to draw Serif Style SERIF LETTERING HAS THE SMALL LINES (SERIFS) THAT FINISH OFF THE STROKE OF THE LETTER. SANS SERIF LETTERING DOESN’T

1. Start out drawing the basic shape of the letters ABCD. 2. Once you have the letters roughly drawn, go back over them to thicken the downstrokes. This adds to the classic feel of a serif font. 3. With a sharp piece of chalk, add the serif to the top and bottom of the strokes. For a different effect, connect the serif to the body of the stroke by drawing a small, curved, diagonal connector (a bracketed serif).

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LIVING | GATHERING

House of cards THE GREAT THING ABOUT A PIZZA AND GAMES NIGHT IS THAT YOU CAN MAKE IT YOUR OWN – JUST GET THE BASIC S RIGHT AND YOU ’LL COME UP TRUMPS Photography, food styling and recipes: MOWIE KAY Assistants: MAGGIE LYSIONEK AND BRUCE MARTIN

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hen the evenings draw in and there’s a chill in the air, it’s the ideal time to plan a low-maintenance meal that can be dipped in and out of, while you dust off a pack of cards* and cosy up for an evening of relaxed chat, drink and play. With a little forethought – make the dough and tomato sauce ahead, prep some fresh, seasonal ingredients for toppings and salads and assemble a no-cook dessert in pretty glasses – you’re left to enjoy a stylish pizza party. 46

*Learn a new game with our Card School in each issue – see page 124. There are more at thesimplethings.com/blog/cardschool


Everyone gets to hand-pick their toppings, so there’ll be no arguments – unless someone cheats at gin rummy...

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NOTES ON SQUASH BORED OF BUTTERNUT? THESE GORGEOUS GOURDS TASTE AS VARIED AS THEY LOOK, SO GATHER THEM UP WHILE YOU CAN Photography: ROSIE BARNETT Words: RACHAEL OAKDEN

TI HEN SPAG H ET ALIZER W DS A SPIR S WHO NEE THESE? IT F O E N O OT TO YOU ’VE G S AWAY IN LL FA H FLES YELLOW WHEN S D N A R IKE ST RIBBON -L D. OR BAKE STEAMED

GEM TH THE HAR D SKIN OF THIS SOU AFR ICAN STAP LE MAK ES A EED BIODEGR ADABLE BOWL. DE-S R IT, STUF F WITH BUT TER, SOU E. CRE AM OR RAG U, THEN BAK

I know I look pretty, but please cut me up

M US CA DE DE PR OV EN CE TH IC K- FL ES HE D FR EN CH VA RI ET Y TH AT ’S A W IN NE R FO R CR EA M Y SO UP S AN D VE LV ET Y PI ES . OR JU ST PU T IT ON YO UR CO UN TE R AN D ST RO KE IT.


LIVING | EXPERT

UC HI KI KU RI (O R RE D KU RI) PU MP KIN LO OK AL IKE W ITH DE NS E, NU TT Y FL ES H. KE EP IT IN TH E VEG BA SK ET TO ROAS T AN D MA SH W HE N YO U NE ED TO FE EL NU RT UR ED.

It takes a while to peel me, but I’m worth the effort

KA BO CH A TH IS OR IE NT AL FAVO UR IT E M AK ES A TE ND ER VEGE TA BL E TE M PU RA . SL IC E AN D ROAS T W IT H CO CO NU T OI L AN D SP IC ES FO R A SATI SF YI NG SI DE DI SH .

IN C E TO C R OW N PR U S K N IF E D A SE R IO YO U N EE ER . B U T PP O H W IS KE TAC K LE TH U CAN MA D IC ED YO O N C E IT ’S U R RY TO C LE B A V EG ET EN O U G H . FR EE ZE R FI LL TH E


PICTURE PERFECT THIS ARTIST’S HOME IN DENMARK IS TUCKED INTO A FOREST AND SURROUNDED BY NATURE. JUST THE PLACE TO RETREAT, PAINT AND WATCH THE AUTUMN LEAVES TUMBLE Words: CLARE GOGERTY Photography: CHARLOTTE SCHMIDT OLSEN/HOUSE OF PICTURES Production: MARIANNE THUESEN/HOUSE OF PICTURES

The big half-timbered house once served as a laundry for nearby Torbenfeldt castle. Clothes were washed in the pond and dried in the meadow. Right, Siri’s mum restored the jugs on her windowsill


NEST | HOME TOUR


NEST

PHOTOGRAPHY: NARRATIVES. WORDS: CLARE GOGERTY

LOVE YOUR HOME INSIDE AND OUT WITH THE SIMPLE THINGS

Honesty You might not notice honesty in summer: its fragrant purple flowers on long stems are sweet but not striking. Come autumn, its seedheads shed their coating, revealing translucent discs of rice-paper delicacy. Clustered in luminous, nodding groups they have been likened to the moon*, hence the plant’s Latin name, Lunaria annua. Cut and brought into the house, a few stalks will keep delivering ethereal loveliness until the spring.

* The circular seedheads have also been compared to coins, earning the plant the nicknames Money-in-both-pockets and Devil’s ha’pence.

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THINK | MINDFULNESS

Ma h a t m a G a n d h i

one simple idea

You might not want to get inked in reality, but tattoo art can be a great way to explore your creativity. Dedicate your design to somebody you love, or design one for yourself. Create something that is beautiful and unique.

* This idea and the illustration comes from Calm by Michael Acton Smith (Penguin)

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