Sunday, 29 May 2011

I collect therefore I am

Inspired by Lesley (over at Printed material - see side bar) I thought I'd share some of my collections over the next few months...Check out Lesley's blog for some great inspiration.

For a while I had a "thing" for art deco and went to lots of Deco fairs but couldn't afford the prices of Clarice Cliff, Susie Cooper etc.

One day at a car boot I came across this jug at my car boot and the owner wanted £2 for it. It had a bit of a hairline crack in it but I liked it and thought it would look good with some flowers in it. When I got it home I did some research on the maker, Myott. It was far less well known than the other factories from the thirties and there were very few collectors (this was in 2002). It turned out that this was actually quite a rare design and a perfect one had fetched £200. I started looking out for these pieces and finding out more by talking to one or two specialists at the deco fairs and got to the point where I knew more than many of the non- specialist dealers in terms of what was "special" and what wasn't. Over the next few years I picked up pieces wherever I could find them at a good price. I don't have a lot of disposable cash but would occasionally have a car boot or sell some of my other "stuff" to fund my habit. (So far they haven't developed a rehab place for those of us who have addictions to "stuff" so I'm safe for the time being)

Over the next few years I acquired quite a few jugs, vases, bowls etc and had them randomly displayed about the house but it wasn't until I put them all together on my shelves that they really came into their own as a collection. The different shapes have names and would be instantly recognisable to other collectors. But there was a problem around the time of entering Blogland. I went off orange! I'd never been a fan of orange but something about the iconic combination of the 1930s orange and black had appealed. But I no longer wanted a room dependent on orange. I've tried to reduce my collection - but the market at the moment is eschewing Myott and the prices have dropped (for the time being). So at the moment the orange is packed away and my shelves have morphed to include pieces from some of my other collections.

The cage with the dolls in it? Well what would you do with a canary cage bought for £3? Any suggestions gratefully received. For the moment it houses my collection of forsaken souls with a nod to the old Victorian fair ground.

It's a grey day - time to sort out one of your collections?

Saturday, 14 May 2011

Ideas for the weekend

If you're short of something to do this weekend here's some inspiration for you

1 - have some fun with old carrier bags and do a bit of fancy interior styling (picture taken at a shop in Notting Hill)

2 - look for old ship mastheads at the local car boot

3 - stretch some cling film between a couple of posts and get to work with a spray can or two. And yes that really is cling film, I had a look round the back! !

Have fun and enjoy your weekend!

Tuesday, 10 May 2011

Lace or Lycra?

While in London recently the weekend I visited the Vintage Emporium just off Brick Lane. I was so taken with this place I asked whether I could take pictures to share with you...

Downstairs was a vintage shop full of clothes, hats etc. It was brimming with racks of lovely stuff!

I loved the advertising props and packaging (tried to buy some but they weren't for sale!)

Upstairs was a coffee shop which was decorated like a shabby lounge with lots of old chairs,sofas etc. (I felt quite at home!)

The framed music was a nice touch

but I particularly liked the old bike and stacked cases,

their use of empty frames

and old adverts,

but my favourite picture from here is this one - sweet!

Later, this coffee shop teased with its great name "Look Mum no hands"!

Obviously aimed at the bike enthusiast this is so much more than a coffee shop...

With a nod to vintage in it's advertising and old milk bottles for the flowers it was an internet cafe, and believe it or not, a place to get your bike fixed!

The furnishings were bike themed,

as was the art which was all for sale.

Had to smile at this framed print which will make the older ones amongst you recall something similar 30 years back if you remember the book with a similar title!

Having no bike, computer, lycra or cycle clips with me I wasn't around for long but I do like the way that businesses are diversifying to maximise their profits. I like to see that a bit of extra imagination is being used to provide give their customers with something different.

Have I forgotten something? Oh yes - cake! I was so taken with the decor in both places I completely forgot the most essential part of the coffee shop!

Wednesday, 4 May 2011

Not the royal wedding - in London on the wrong day!

Not the right invitation

Great use for all that bunting!

Not your usual souvenir

The Queen showed me her tin collection

A right Royal celebration

Table nicely laid

Not the right cake

Did get to Windsor

and got my very own fly past!