Monday, 14 December 2009

Christmas Preparations

It has been hectic weekend doing last minute jobs for Christmas before I fly off to New York at the weekend with my lovely girl. Josh was quite happy to take it easy though in his new Cath Kidston bed I found for him on Ebay.

I have used mainly vintage decorations this year that I have been collecting over the year, they are so much nicer than new ones. I found this little angel in a bag of vintage baubles I bought for 10p in the Summer at a table top sale.

The tree is finally up and I have changed from the usual red and gold theme to use loads of multi coloured vintage glass baubles and I think it looks so much more festive.

The decorating in the hall, stairs and landing is virtually finished at last ! After years in a cupboard we have wired in one of a pair of lovely Arts and Crafts lanterns we bought a number of years ago on Ebay. These came from a house in Bournville and belonged to an elderly lady who was a member of the Cadbury family. They are really for an outside porch but for now I want to enjoy them inside. When I received them they came with some old unwrapped bars of Cadbury chocolate from the war.

I have really enjoyed decorating my kitchen dresser shelves with glass baubles, fairy lights and tea lights. I had these shelves this year as a birthday present and I love them. They came from a lovely old house in a village near Stratford upon Avon. I started off trying to be restrained with what I put on them but I seem to keep squeezing more on.

And finally here are my lovely Advent blocks from the talented Annie at Birdcages and Butterflies. I was so excited when I received these in the post , I meant to buy some from her at our vintage fair in November and didn't get a chance. They are displayed with my Christmas Stanleys and my vintage American Disney decorations. Hope you all have a lovely week and a special hello to all my family reading this up in freezing Scotland. x

Sunday, 6 December 2009

Bentley Priory Winter Fair

Yesterday was the Bentley Priory Winter Fair. Deb and I had been invited to have a stall so we were up bright and early with baskets full of vintage goodies. Bentley Priory is the home of the Battle Of Britain museum and was where fighter command were based. It is a lovely old house with lots of character.

I loved the stained glass windows and the wonderful chandeliers.

Outside was looking very festive with Christmas trees and wreaths for sale.

On the front lawn was a Hurricane and a Spitfire, amazing old planes and not as big as I imagined.

As usual Deb and I had too much stock to display and our table certainly looked very full ! However we had lots of nice feedback from customers and the Christmas shoppers seemed to like our stall.

I didn't leave empty handed. I found this great 1930s toothbrush holder. It has a hole in each side for toothbrushes and a little tray along the bottom for a tube of toothpaste. These were made in Japan for export and many ended up in the US. For now it has found a spot on my bathroom shelf.

I also found another Josephine book to add to my collection. I love the Honor C. Appleton illustrations.

And I couldn't resist these copies of The Girls Own Paper from the 1930s. The cover illustrations are wonderful. The only problem was choosing which ones to have . Some of the articles and stories in them are great and so funny.

And finally I treated myself to these gorgeous candles from The Spitalfields Candle Company. This one in the 1930s Coronation mug is gorgeous. The candle smells wonderful, it is scented with rose and geranium. The others are the Winter fragrance and Lemon verbena. They are made from a lovely organic soy wax and are very good quality. Apparently Liberty are selling candles in coronation mugs at the moment but are three times the price. If you like good quality scented candles check out their lovely website

And John and Libby if you are reading this, it was lovely to see you and thanks for making the journey x

Saturday, 28 November 2009

November Bicycle Basket Bazaar

Today was BBB in Northampton's old fishmarket hall. Deb and I had a bike between us. Unfortunately as we were a little late we ended up next to the outside door so we were pretty cold ! The atmosphere was great as usual and the fish market was bustling with Christmas shoppers.

It's always lovely to catch up with fellow basketeers including Lindsey from 'Elsie Sparrow'. I bought one of her cute Christmas stockings complete with striped candy cane. Also a little mirror made using a page from a comic that brought back memories of my teenage years.

Linda and Jake were there, they had a stall ' Love Thyself ,' at our vintage fair a few weeks ago. I couldn't resist one of Linda's Cinderella tags. I loved this Ladybird book when I was a child. Linda and I both agreed that her blue dress was our favourite, although I think I used to change my mind about my favourite Cinderella dress on a regular basis.

I treated myself to this lovely Father Christmas match box holder, I spotted it amongst Deb's treasures before she had even unpacked ! It's now on my kitchen dresser and it prompted me to fish out my old Father Christmas Bird's Custard jug.

Next Saturday we are going to be at the Bentley Priory Winter Fair. Bentley Priory is the historic home of the Battle of Britain museum so should have a wonderful atmosphere.

Sunday, 22 November 2009

New Finds -Margaret Tarrant

Margaret Tarrant is one of my favourite illustrators. I especially like her pictures from the series that includes 'Thoughts of Youth' and 'Summer Dreams'. In the last couple of weeks I have found a number of her pictures in local charity shops. They are some of her most well known pictures some of which were published and framed by Boots in the 1950s and 60s.

I also found a lovely pair of Goebel figures and some colourful Colclough Harlequin plates.

The next few weeks are going to be really hectic, next Saturday Debbie and I are having a bike at Northampton's Bicycle Basket Bazaar at the old fishmarket and the Saturday after that we have been invited to have a stall at the Winter Fair at Bentley Priory near London, the historic home to the Battle of Britain museum. The Saturday before Christmas I am off to New York with my lovely girl for 5 days of Christmas sightseeing and shopping. We have never been before so I have started feeling excited although a little apprehensive.
In between times I have to start adding new stock to my online shop I share with Debbie. Her clever husband has just set us up with a .com website for our American customers so I need to start adding some new items. This will also help to hopefully reduce the amount of vintage goodies which are overflowing from the spare bedroom !
Hope you all have a lovely week.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Mid Week Treat

Yesterday after work and school I dashed for the railway station with my lovely girl. We were headed to london for the gala evening of the Country Living Christmas Fair. We had never been before so didn't know what to expect. When we arrived we certainly weren't disappointed. There was so much to see and so little time !

My first purchases were this gorgeous mug from Caroline Zoob and some lovely velvet violets.

I treated myself to a gorgeous Jan constantine cushion, something I have wanted for ages. My lovely girl picked a cute mug for herself.

She also chose a lovely hand blown glass decoration in the shape of Big Ben, this was from the wonderful Bombki stand. You can read all about the company in this month's Homes and Antiques magazine.

This pretty lavender heart was from 'Vintage Inspiration'.

The christmas pud was from 'The carved Angel'. The food area was fantastic with lots of lovely food and drink to taste.

And finally these lovely original French seed packet labels were from Burgundy Brocante , also featured in this month's Homes and Antiques magazine.
If you are thinking of visiting the fair I would highly recommend it but leave yourself plenty of time. We didn't get to see everything in the couple of hours we were there and could have done with another couple of hours. The next fair is the Spring one at the end of March.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Northampton's Vintage Fair

Well what a day yesterday was ! After months of preparation the day finally arrived and then seemed to be over in a flash. There were a few sleepless nights wondering if anyone would come but in the end the hall was packed from start to finish. Everyone seemed to have a good time and there was a wonderful friendly atmosphere. It was lovely to meet up with fellow bloggers including Annie and her mum from Birdcages and Butterflies, Wendy from Ticking Stripes, Emma from Silver Pebble and Sharon from Clover cottage. Sharon took some great pictures which she has posted on her blog. We had lots of help from family and friends which was much appreciated and much needed ! Already people are asking
when we are going to do it again so we guess we will probably organise another one around Easter time. It was so busy I didn't get a chance to take many photos and the ones I took of the hall once everyone had set up have sadly turned out really dark so I can't use them. It was great that Sharon arrived with her camera and photographed so many of the lovely stalls.

Thank you to everyone that came to buy and sell. Thanks to all the lovely sellers for making such an effort to decorate their stalls so beautifully and thanks to everyone for so much support and encouragement. Debbie and I had a great day and really appreciate all the positive feedback we have received.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

A Woman's Best Friend

This gorgeous calendar from 1954 arrived in the post today. It comes from Jayne's shop at country cottage chic and is even lovelier than in the photos .

My real life best friend 'Josh' has been struggling with the fire works the last few days so we have resorted to the old 'tight T shirt trick'. We heard about this a few months ago and it really seems to work for dogs frightened by fireworks. It seems to calm them in the same way as swaddling a baby. Today he is modeling another T shirt found in the bottom of my daughter's wardrobe, very Rock-n-Roll .
Today was the antiques market on the market square, there were a fair few stalls considering the weather was horrible. I seemed to find things with a pink and green theme which I love as a colour combination. This Paragon cup and saucer is very pretty.

I really like these bark cloth curtains with their original pelmet , the photos don't really show the lovely shade of green. I am not sure what to do with these yet, maybe cushion covers ?

This pair of hand worked nautical pictures are lovely.

Tomorrow is going to be very hectic. I have the day off work and will be spending the whole day on last minute preparations for Saturday's Vintage Fair here in Northampton. Fingers crossed the weather will be kind to us.