books and beaches

1st July 2015

By Helen Parker



I had a message this morning from my sister Juliet and it filled me with nostalgia for summer days with my kiddies. She said she was up early, packed up the car and had decided to take the kids off school and drive to the beach for the day. I thought how lovely, just bunk off school and make the most of a rare perfect summer day, I can’t think of anything better in life – what a good Mum!. Life is too short not to make the most of special moments. This led me to thinking about books and how I really hope we don’t stop needing and enjoying them, it’s happened with music so it’s possible. Strange link, but I think it’s just a general feel for the special little things in life that may sometimes be forgotten, things that allow you to while away time in a contented way I guess, like reading or hanging out on the beach, so when I hear someone appreciating the special moments it makes me remember to do it myself.


We have lots of books for sale at the Mill and when I choose and order them, I think how lovely it will be to sit in a shady spot and read them for inspiration and delight. The reality is I never do, I skip through the magazines I get daily, check out our adverts and features and never really spend some proper time enjoying them. I think I blame a little of this on Pinterest, not in a bad way but it’s just such a bombardment of images that you look at so fleetingly, maybe save to your own board or just move on forgetting them instantly and requiring more and more to flash before you in quick succession.

So yesterday, coincidentally I did pick up a book from the Mill and read it in a little more detail, ‘In Detail’ by Hans Blomquist. If I hadn’t made it clear before, when I talk  books and reading I’m not talking about novels, they are not my thing at all, I’m talking about books with beautiful pictures.


It gave me the nudge I needed to change a little window at the Mill and make it look inspiring for our customers. We have some old cigar making contraptions that we bought at an antiques fair, lovely pieces of wood with a good old smell, but what to do with them? I think the feathers look really pretty and a little bit unusual which is what displays should be about, tones, originality and ideas.

Styled and photographed by deVOL.
Styled and photographed by deVOL.

Then there’s my favourite flowers when they are dried, hydrangeas. I love the subdued soft colours and the way they stay in perfect shape long after they are dried. They make the most beautiful and lasting displays.

Styled and photographed by deVOL.

So if you’re looking for old cigar boxes, books by Hans Blomquist, some hydrangeas or an old pot then come and while away a little time at the Mill, there’s no beach but it is quite beautiful watching the water and the wildlife. Take a leaf out of this swans book, she’s off with the kids for a day out on the water.

come on kids lets go and have some fun!!!

come on kids lets go and have some fun!!!

Need any help?

Cotes Mill
- 01509 261000

St. John's
- 020 3879 7900

Tysoe Street
- 020 3837 5900

Need any help? Please email:

Cotes Mill - 01509 261000

St. John's Square - 020 3879 7900

Tysoe Street - 020 3837 5900

© 2018 deVOL Kitchens.
Cotes Mill, Nottingham Road, Cotes,
Loughborough, LE12 5TL.