Advent calendar: DEC 7

December 7, 2010

Bored? Tired? Cold? Two or more of the above? Cheer yourself up with a quick look behind door number seven of our virtual advent calendar…

What a treat! It’s the quirky Christmas ceramics collection from Charlotte Farmer at Found! Check out the Rock ‘n’ Roll range, which features retro Walkmans (Walkmen?!), Elvis Presley, and chunky speakers – all on delicate china plates. – Ellie


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Sunbury Antiques sesh

December 7, 2010

To quote Ariel (no, not The Tempest. The Little Mermaid. No, not Hans Christian Andersen. Disney. Groan.) “I’ve got gadgets and gizmos aplenty, I’ve got whozits and whatzits galore. You want thingamabobs? I got twenty. But who cares? No big deal. I want mooooooore.” Although the similarities pretty much end there – I don’t have a tail, red hair or a shell bikini, alas – when confronted with Vintage Tat, much like the dear Ariel, I can’t help myself. (What AM I on about!?) Anyway. I went to Sunbury Antiques market at Kempton Park last week and, despite the snow, it was wonderful, with whozits and whatzits galore…

There’s no rhyme or reason to this post. It’s just a bunch of photos I took on my iPhone. So log off now if flea markets ain’t your thang! I saw: Victorian ‘poison’ bottles for £3, beautiful old bicycles, suitcases, sewing machines and scissors…

Only the hardcore (AKA insane) shoppers were out as the temperature plummeted and snow started to fall. I spotted: a kitsch framed Tretchikoff print, a beautiful old Struwwelpeter book (shame it was getting snowed on and wet!), pretty vintage baking trays, industrial-style filing cabinets, a 1950s teapot, and a shopper who had clearly been out in the cold for a bit too long…

I lusted after: these lovely ceramic pots for toothpaste, anchovy paste, and cold cream…

I saw: religious statues, old advertising signs, frozen Victorian glass bell jars, macabre taxidermy, and some crazy stall holders…

I loved: vintage cutlery, lab flasks and scientific equipment, and bee hives…

I chuckled: when I saw this not-very-politically-correct children’s book:

I wanted: to buy all of the bell jars and stock up on spindles. But WHY?! Indeed. Dear reader, I resisted.

I liked: statues of Jesus, pots for ‘Sainsbury’s Bloater Paste’ – eurgh! Made of fish apparently – globes and antlers and medicine bottles and a table covered with a map and chandeliers and vintage magazines and barn stars and bones. Phew! Although I wouldn’t want a skeleton in my cupboard…

I admired: stacks of old leather suitcases dusted with snow…

I bought: two mirrors (not shown because they’re huge!) and…

…a book called ‘British Earthworms And How To Identify Them’ (hours of fun), a Ridgway Homemaker saucer to add to my collection, an old ruler, some glass bottles, some potted meat pots (for Christmas homemade paté gifts), a ‘Bloater paste’ pot to use as a tea light votive and an American toothpaste pot prescribed by a ‘Dr Cofein’. Which sounds a bit like coffin. Not the best name for a doctor! – Ellie

Advent calendar: DEC 6

December 6, 2010

Mittens on? Good. Give that sixth door a shove, then…

Oooh la la! It’s a pretty Housetohome pic! Not the most ground-breaking of ideas, I confess, but a lovely shot nonetheless. I spotted lots of old chandelier crystals at the flea market I went to last week (am finally back on the all-powerful PhotoShop so I’ll post about my finds later today!) – and there are plenty of spray-able twigs in my garden, so perhaps I should have a go at making a festive centrepiece like this? It’s so simple. All you need is a branch, a vase, a can of spray paint in silver, white or grey, and some pretty vintage crystals. Bish bash bosh, as they say. – Ellie

Advent calendar: DEC 5

December 5, 2010

Wondering what to do with all that vintage lace you’ve got lying around? No? Oh. Well, if you were to stumble upon some ancient haberdashery, you could always be inspired by the lovely H&M Home pic behind our fifth virtual door…

Loving the lace decoration above the table – and remember, kids, this stuff looks posh but is all thrillingly CHEAP (…apart from the furniture. Antique. Props. Natch. SIGH.) The frilly table runner, par example, is a mere £14. Hurrah! – Ellie

Barbara Coupe: NEW cushions

December 4, 2010

Inspired by the segregation signs on the wall of her converted school house in Battersea, Barbara Coupe has embroidered these gorgeous ‘BOYS ONLY IN THIS AREA’ and ‘GIRLS ONLY IN THIS AREA’ cushions. These new additions to the fabulous London Calling collection were shown at Top Drawer and Decorex earlier this autumn and are now available via Barbara’s website and at Rockett St George.

Nice use of the Financial Times newspaper here by stylist Twig Hutchinson!

These segregation cushions remind me of the amazing 1800s school log book my other half got hold of recently. There are some hilarious entries about a lazy caretaker and lots of references to the annoying boys in the next playground who throw objects at the girls, much to the chagrin of their prim female teacher! I will try to dig it out and scan a few of the pages, then add the extracts to this post next week. Oh, what I wouldn’t give for a scanner now. And an Apple key at that. And a lap top that doesn’t burn my leg with a stupidly-positioned fan. SIGH. #workingfromhome.

JAN 2011: Well, finally, I got round to borrowing the log book and taking some DREADFUL photos of the extracts I was waffling on about weeks ago! Here they are! In case you can’t read the fabulous hand-writing, I’ve copied them out below, too.

“I had to complain to the caretaker, that for the second time this week the communication door between the girls’ and boys’ playgrounds was open at the time of dismissal. The boys were allowed to run into the girls playground, causing them much annoyance.”

“Septem: 3rd. During Standard 4 Drill in the playground on Friday afternoon, August 31st, Flor Page had her head cut by an inkwell, which had come from a window in the Boys’ Department.”

Class dismissed! – Ellie

Advent calendar: DEC 4

December 4, 2010

Brrrrrr – it sure is chilly round here. Time for a warming mug of hot chocolate and a little peek behind door number four…

Hurrah! It’s the pretty vintage Christmas brooches from Acorn and Will. While we’re there, let’s have a little look at the 1950s-style Christmas wrapping paper and vintage ribbons, too. It’d be rude not to. – Ellie


Advent calendar: DEC 3

December 3, 2010

Put down that mince pie and have a look behind the third door of our virtual calendar. It’s a good ‘un…

Golly gosh, chaps, it’s the DIVINE silhouette ceramic baubles from those fashionable Danes over at Day Birger Et Mikkelsen. I ogled their stylish silhouette cushions and prints earlier this season, so these are a hit with me – and it’s nice to finally see some Christmas tree decorations I actually like! – Ellie