Sunday, 3 October 2010

Nostalgic Rainy Day Treasures

Today was a good rainy day for sorting through more of my finds which I have stored away waiting for such a day!  Last year I helped to clear out a family attic (Trixie's, of the dress fame - see article 11th July 2010 in Homes & Antiques magazine.)  I came across boxes and boxes of postcards, photos and other memorabilia, some of which I thought I would share.

Love the old chocolate box with huge satin bow - chocs don't come wrapped like that anymore!

The cards date from the 40s and 50s - postcards, birthday cards and some Christmas cards which I am hoping to do something inspirational with nearer the time - need some ideas if anyone has any!  Here are some close-ups

Just love the colours from those days gone by ... (bit before my time!)

Whilst rooting through a cupboard also found this doll buried at the back - I'm sure she was loved one day (despite looking a bit scary).  I would think she is made from celluloid.  She is a bit delicate but has some lovely hand-made clothes, including a Victorian nightie.  Trixie was born in 1918 so this doll may have belonged to her or perhaps her mother?  Trixie was a cousin of my grandmothers.

Thursday, 9 September 2010

Ma vitrine francaise

Mais oui! I have at last finished 'upcycling' my latest purchase - and am really pleased with the result. 

Being a bit of a francophile I enjoy bargain-hunting at French vide-greniers and brocantes and obviously needed somewhere French to store my 'trouvailles' (nice French word for 'tat').  So, bought an original French dresser from e-bay shop's the French Depot (see link below).  When it arrived the dresser looked absolutely huge and very dark brown and smelt distinctly of Gauloises!  It was definitely in need of a makeover after years of French 'vie'.  Actually, it was in great condition with the original keys and some lovely carved detail to the base.  I decided on Farrow & Ball's Dix Blue, applied a couple of coats and rubbed down with wire wool and antique brown furniture wax - et, voila!

 Here is the top upon delivery.

Somehow, painted in a lighter colour the 'vitrine' now seems smaller and will look great in my new room (when I get it).

As you can see have managed to fill it with goodies already. are based on the south coast of England and source original French furniture to sell at great prices.

Hoping to buy more treasures soon - planning a trip to Nantes in southern Brittany to visit my son at university - seems that there are a few brocantes on to browse through that weekend - what a coincidence!

Will be loaded down on the way with all his student dictionaries that he couldn't fit in on his outgoing trip and may have a bag full of French bits and pieces on my return trip, courtesy of cheap air travel!

Brocante blog coming soon!

Monday, 23 August 2010

My thrifty weekend (I like cups!!)

Over the gate in Warkton village
If there are two cups above gate pic - there was a slight technical hitch. Please say if the link doesn't work!

Spent a lovely Saturday morning at Deanne and Michelle's first craft market at Warkton, a lovely village close to Kettering in Northants.  Splashed out on some new dangly earrings made by Michelle and a felt leaf keyring made by Deanne.  How nice to wander round with no kids (or husband! asking "can we go now?" ) and buy something that someone else has created.  Other stalls included American cookie kits, mixed media art and lovely hand-knitted lacy scarves from home-dyed wool. Thought I might have a go at selling some of my cushions and housey accessories on a stall there sometime soon - need to build up a bit of a stash first though

Did a few essential bits at home and then on Sunday off to my local car boot sale at Saddington.  Met up with a friend and did some joint bargain-hunting.  Found these lovely vintage cups and saucers and snapped them up - because you can never have enough! Picked up a great table - French inspired? for a fiver.  Took it home and gave it a coat of Briwax. Will look good near my authentic French dresser which I'll tell you about next time ...


Friday, 13 August 2010

The Trixie Dress!

Welcome to my Blog ...

Thought I'd start by telling you about the dress that I came across when clearing out an elderly relative's attic last year.  Sadly Trixie died and had no immediate family, so it was left to me to sort out her lifetime's possessions - and when I say a 'lifetime' I mean 90 year's worth of family treasures and memorabilia. Up in the attic I found a family photo album from the 1890s and have taken home for safekeeping!  This has wonderful photos of Victorian and Edwardian lifestyles.  Anyway, back to the dress, which was handmade by Trixie in the 1950s.  I decided to sell it on E-bay and it was bought by Julie from BeachBygones - see - Julie was featured wearing the dress in Homes & Antiques magazine's August issue! I was so pleased to see the dress being worn again that I contacted Julie and sent her some original photos of its owner, which you can see on her blog.

Other finds included a stash of vintage linen, all handmade, some of which I have sold.  I also have a huge bag of 40s/50s fabrics which I want to re-invent into something useful, not decided on projects yet though and am looking for inspiration! Trixie and her family lived in a lifetime when nothing was thrown away - her kitchen cupboards were heaving with homemade jams and pickles from the 1980s! yuk ...