Copy Katie - An interior styling, pr and copywriting service

 I look forward to seeing you at my new blog and website www.copykatie.co.uk a brand new interior styling, pr and copywriting service for holiday homes in France and the UK.

If you have plans to let out your property or second home in the near future then please get in contact. I can advise you on transforming your property into a stunning rental and help market it to the right guide books and clients to ensure all round trade.

Copy Katie and find out how you could make more from your holiday home today.


From rags to riches...well not quite

I remember clearly the first time I ever used a sewing machine. I was 14 I think and the textile teacher had long brown hair that my best friend, Katharine managed to get caught up in her needle. I think she saw the funny side of it but it was clear neither of us were destined to be Cath Kidston.

I recently revisited the world of textile magic when I picked up a cheap sewing machine online for less than a hundred pounds. So, having no idea what I was doing I set to work. First up I made this cushion for my friend's new born baby girl.

Then I thought I'd crack on with a few more designs. These were a gift for another little arrival, I've a long way to go but I love foraging about for old and new fabrics and bringing them together to create something new.

They make great heartfelt gifts and you certainly don't have to worry about someone else buying the same thing. I've done a pair of curtains...bit wonky but pretty in seasidy checks for my parents new seaside home in Southwold and am thinking about making a new top for myself.

In the meantime, I shall try to keep my ponytail out the way. No need for a re run on Mrs Textile Teacher's nasty accident!


I'm back...with a new love!

So, it's like this. I've got a new man in my life... He keeps me awake a lot and gives me the runaround all day long. We go on dates, mostly at lunchtimes and have not yet got drunk together.

He's handsome, got a peachy little face and kind, knowing eyes. I feel like I have known him my whole life. He met me when I was slim, got me eating a lot and pretty fat but it's all ok. To say I am madly in love doesn't even come close to describe how I feel about this fellow, I simply adore him.

I love his hands, his smile, his two little teeth and most of all those twinkly eyes and curly blond hair. Just when I had given up hope and planned to open a sausage dog sanctuary, voila, along came my precious boy. He's now 7 months old and it's been a busy old year, running the b and b with a crinkly little baby bird in the wings.

I look a million years older but how life changing, completely exhausting in a milky, covered in baby poo fantastic kind of way. I am marking this year down in my little black book as the toughest but most rewarding yet. Better than any promotion and well worth being broke for. So, sorry for the slacking....I'm back with lots more in 2013 but most of all I am a very happy girl indeed.

Happy New Year everyone x


The Usual Sausages

I often find myself caught up in ooh la la jokes, I think I start them sometimes without realising the error of my ways. In fact, sometimes I arrive at work with such a catalogue of events on a Monday morning that even they've started calling me La Bridget Jones... At Christmas, I got a little more than I bargained for when I ordered my usual from the butcher however...

On around 20th December I phoned the local Boucher to order our Oie for Christmas lunch. I love goose with all the trimmings and it must be said that his is a mighty fine "wah". Every time I order without fail, he laughs his head off, thinks my pronuciation leaves a lot to be desired. He's probably right. Too many years in voice training at the BBC and I can't quite shake my English accent. Anyway, some people say it's charmant! He looks a bit like a shrunken version of Quentin Tarantino so of course we delight in joking about his latest film, " The Usual Sausages". However, on ordering my Oie, after the usual jokes, Mme suddenly asked me if I was expecting. I have begun to dread this question.

" Er, mais non pas encore " I spluttered.

To my horror, she turned to her husband and shouted in French " She's not pregnant yet darling."

Ew, this was feeling a bit embarrassing and I was getting a little hot under the collar.

" When would you like him to come round and show you how it's done? "

While she was talking I'd decided to have a quick slurp of tea. Needless to say with the outburst of laughter I am still wiping off the spray from the computer desk weeks later.

" Oh, er, non, we're fine merci but I'll let be sure to let you know how we get on".

Not on your nelly! Mon dieu.

And, so she she laughed and repeated my order back to me,

"Donc, that's une Oie!

" Yes, one Wah " I said.

"Oie" she said

" Wah " I said
"Oeeeeaaarrrghhhh " she squawked back

" Yes, WAHHHHHHHH " I slightly shouted back.

"Bon, parfait. "

I was just about to sign off when she said " and you'll pop in and pick it up soon? And let me know if you want our assistance"

Jeez, I didn't dare ask for a sausage with that. What with all the Wah wah ing I think the neighbours probably thought we'd confused Christmas with Valentines night already.

So, my fellow ex pat friends, make the most of the not understanding and steer clear of my mistakes or you too may live your life in France like a carry on movie. They were only joking of course but I must admit, I am slightly anxious about visiting the shop now at closing time, just in case I am whisked out the back and artificially mated with one of their prize ganders.


Learning to run again

Is it me or does it get harder to get in shape the older you get? I used to fit in a dog walk, horseride and mucking out before school in my childhood years but now I can barely face the thought of exercise and the waistline is proving it!

So, when I came across Reebok Easytone Running Shoes, imagine my delight.


A pert backside and thighs without setting foot in a gym. So, off my mind goes wondering whether soon I will be able to squeeze into that Zara jacket that really is way too small even though it's a European size 14..ouch that hurt. Sadly, as a friend reminded me " Losing a few pounds Katie won't halve the size of your back " Hhmmm, good point.

I'll soon be 35 - I can't believe it either and recently someone who stayed in our b and b thought I was my husband's mother. Not good. With a body that feels like a muffin and a face that's well, aged me around 60 - I've gotta do something and quick!

So, anyone tried these amazing running shoes? Did you see the difference? And, more importantly, how long will it take me to look like Kate Moss?...


Babies, babies everywhere

Me and my dear fellow have been considering adding to our family home for a while now. I could at this point go on to say how saddening this can be at times, how I long with cradled arms singing " All by myself " but there really is no point. There will always be someone with a sadder, longer tale than ours and frankly, it's just not that pressing. Some people have started saying, " Ah, right, " but it's ok, we understand.

We, on the other hand are not depressed. We're happy and busy waiting for our shooting star, baby dust or stork visit ( careful with that one the roof might cave in ). We're happy having lie ins and going out at the weekends guilt free.

In the meantime, we know that good things come to those who wait x


Christmas Tree

She's up and we're feeling fine and festive.


Autumn in Paris

Paris je t'aime. I've spent seven years looking for you, dancing on stage for the children of the village dressed as a giant ostrich no less, trying to find a French friend to share a bottle of wine with on a Friday night, mingling with chasseurs guffawing about their measly winter catch, making polite conversation with a Frenchman who thought to explain rugby to me he would just shout louder. Yes, the French love affair has, at times been trying. I wondered whether I could ever feel at home ...that was until I found you gay Paris.

A late Autumn break seemed the perfect time to head to to the city while our restaurant closed for a few weeks rest after a long and busy summer. I've stayed once or twice in Paris for a friend's hen weekend, for my own hen weekend and in between train and eurostar plenty of times too. This time it was different, I had more time to soak up this fabulous place and fall in love with it like a first date.

From our apartment in republique we could see Sacre Coeur, tour montparnasse and beyond, all in a misty wet wintery way but so romantic all the same. A gorgeous man in the cafe next door gave us a free apero and told us about his collection of 2000 shoes! We did the tourist thing and hopped on a tour bus around the sights of this structured but free feeling city. I treated myself to a camel beret and drank kir at teatime with the other thirty somethings on their way home from work. On and off the metro we floated, to the Louvre, Tour Eiffel and on to a tear jerking service in Notre Dame, eating and drinking all the way.

The brasserie Lipp was an amazing find, full of buzz and excitement, waiters frantically toing and froing in floor length pinnies - archetypical of a Parisian bistro. Joking with bags of ooh la la about men who prefer a plump, full breast and those who like a skinny leg - chicken of course but hilarious all the same. I'm all for a bit of cheeky humour and this place filled my veins with France, frenchness and everything I love about this warm and tender place. After dark we headed to the lights of St Germain to young people and bars open til the small hours. We took it all in, I pined over pink lace up brogues in the shop windows and we sadly considered what a shame we can't afford to live here.

Back on the train home and as we edged closer to the countryside a group of local fonctionnaires hopped aboard after clocking off from a day shuffling more papers. They make me feel depressed and remind me about the negative, small minded side of France. Their attitudes are as old fashioned as their moonboots and they glare at us like we are second class citizens. It didn't matter because we know what it is that makes us feel homesick from time to time, the massive differences between us and them. We were pleased to be home all the same to fresh air and our loving mutt. We dreamt merrily of Paris and it's open attitude and felt happy to know we're not etrangers everywhere after all.


Foraging for figs, pears and blackberries

We all love a trip out in the wilds in the Autumn to gather free food. The French regularly hunt for mushrooms, cepes and fruits to adorn their winter tables and there's so much more than your average blackberry in the hedgerows down our way.

My kitchen table has a lovely little pile of sweet pears I plan to transform into a pear and pecan salad over the weekend and the blackberries I've picked up on my usual dog walking route have made a fine addition to my morning yoghurt ( as ever trying to become thin a la Sienna Miller ). I planted strawberries and raspberries at home this year but didn't exactly get a bountiful crop, small but sweet maybe.

All this colourful fruit around takes me back to being small and watching jam tarts, apple and blackberry pies and fruit fools being turned out week after week to our dining table on finest chintz willow. We used to keep pigs in the dining room at one point ready for butchering so the crockery and table were quite a step up!

This year I've received loving baskets of plums from workpals as well as apples and the first bunch of grapes from our vine in four years. I've compote'd, if that's a word, stewed, baked and gobbled up all of these with great gusto and am wondering what I'll do when they're all finished.

Perhaps the biggest surprise of all would be the most beautiful fruit of the countryside; finest french figs. I've got used to seeing these buxom fruits dangling from the side of the road over the years but the sight of them never ceases to please me. Big flat leaves with green and riper purple fruits dotted in between.

My pockets are full after my walk, so much so there's no room for the dog lead. So pleased am I with my foraging that my figs have been the staple of my morning porridge and then again for lunch some days with locally cured ham and creamy goats cheese. So pleasing, so pretty and so free! I am no spiritual guru but unloading my pockets onto the kitchen table with these lovely finds makes me feel both happy, naughty and lucky all in one.

Unfortunately the biggest, juiciest ones are always out of reach...


Living the outdoor life

I love last minute plans, they always turn out to be the best fun. Last night, some friends dropped in on their way home from Archachon after a week camping on the coast. Full of excitement and tales of their week away, nursing the burnt bits and shaking the sand from their flip flops with a car packed to the rafters.

A seafood platter later, copious muscadet and a belly full of laughter and we were done. We sat outside until the lights went out in the village listening to the faint hum of musique drifting across from Club Marpen where the last of the summer volunteers restoring the old priory celebrated their final night together. Another summer almost over, already. We huddled around and soaked up the gentle sound of summer, a blanket of stars above us and candlelight to guide us to our beds.
This, for me is summer at it's finest.