Welcome to my Blog.
Please feel free to browse my ramblings below and leave a comment if you like, they are most appreciated.
Jo xx

Friday, 30 September 2011

Just Had To Blog These!

Just a quickie!  I have been busy making a couple of last minute things ready for the fair tomorrow.  The conservatory is like a greenhouse and with the Aga on in the kitchen it is like a blast furnace downstairs.  However I did endeavour to make a couple of grain sack cushions for the V&H Textile and fashion fair in Chipping Sodbury tomorrow.

I bought a gorgeous grain sack from Liz (The Washerwoman's) hubby last weekend in Totnes.  I managed to salvage two panels to make one medium and one large cushion.

The larger of the two, nice and plump with feather pads.

The smaller of the two, both backed in vintage linen and feather filled.  I also have two small pieces that came from the bottom of both sacks with writing on which I will make into smaller cushions at some stage.  Trouble is I want to keep them!!  Have a wonderful weekend, and lets hope the sun keeps shining.
Jo xx
Ps.  Nan is still holding her own, and eating a little at last!  Thank you for your kind wishes.
PPs.  I have a new manni coming home with me tomorrow, that will make 21 downstairs!!

Thursday, 29 September 2011

Thank you & The V&H Textile & Fashion Fair this weekend!!

Firstly you will all be pleased to know that my 91 year old Nan is sort of on the mend.  We were all getting ready for bad news after last weekend but she has made some improvement.  My Nan is a real fighter and certainly made of strong stuff.  She is very stubborn and has been refusing treatment but is slowly coming round to the fact that everyone just wants to see her better and eating something!!  She is by no means out of the woods and may still deteriorate so we are not getting our hopes up just yet.  Thank you for all the lovely comments you left on my last post, I came back from Devon totally bereft that I may lose my Nan and they were a great comfort to me..so thank you.  Now I can return to a bit of normality after the traumatic events of last week I have been busy getting ready for the V&H Textile and Fashion Fair this coming Saturday.  I have had to be a little inventive as I have only got a single table and I always take too much!!

A small sample of what is coming with me.

This beauty has been a recent purchase and somewhat bizarrely arrived half an hour ago by courier.  It is a late 19th century, early 20th century needlepoint rug done in the Gothic style which is a style we absolutely adore...just need an Edwin Lutyens house and my life would be complete (with a Gertrude Jekyll garden of course)!!  

Hours must have gone into this rug, I cannot begin to imagine how long it took to make.  There are some areas of wear which adds to it's charm but apart from that it is in fabulous condition.  

It has been worked in the finest needlepoint and the panels then joined.  We are going to give it pride of place on the wall in the dining room as it will fit in rather snugly with the Gothic Sanctuary lamp and antique wall lights we have...we do have a penchant for Gothic.  Does anyone have any idea how to hang a rug like this as a wall hanging please...we don't know where to start?  Have a great weekend and see you at the V&H Textile and Fashion fair if you can make it.
Jo xx

Monday, 26 September 2011

Weekend in Devon

I have just returned from a wonderful and slightly emotional weekend in Devon.  Mum and I both had stands at the Nostalgic Mix fair in Totnes on Saturday.  Lesley had organised yet another fantastic fair and it was very busy all day long.  There was a lovely mix of stands all selling vintage and home made treasures, all very different so something to suit everyone.  

I bought this beautiful black Victorian lace shawl amongst other things (too numerous to mention!).

I also bought this gorgeous and ethereal 1920's bridal veil and head dress from my friend Ros who owns a lovely shop called 'The Snug' in Ashburton.  Some of you will be familiar with her shop and for those of you who have never visited I can recommend a visit if you are ever down in the South West.  Ashburton has lots of lovely antique and vintage shops.

If you look closely you will see it still has some of the confetti stitched into the hem of the veil.

This beautiful French picture frame came from Liz The Washerwoman.  I also bought some beautiful linen from her hubby.  I can never resist their stand as they always have so many little treasures to ooh and aah over, and I never come away empty handed.  
After an exhausting day, Mum and I returned home to find that my Nan had been taken ill.  Her carer was very concerned as she was sleepy and not eating and drinking.  The Doctor visited and I managed to convince her to go to hospital.  To cut a long story short she is very poorly, and we all realise that this may be the beginning of the end.  My brother drove down from Cambridge yesterday as I had to come back home so he is there to support Mum and John.  We are all absolutely devastated but we do realise that she is 91 and her quality of life is not going to improve.  It has hit me very hard because I am very close to her and she is my last Grandparent, but I do realise that I am lucky to be in my forties and have my Nan.  I am just dreading the phone ringing now.
I hope you have all had a wonderful weekend, and have a great week.
Jo xx

Thursday, 22 September 2011

Off To Totnes

Have had a busy week, getting ready for NM3 in Totnes this Saturday as well as recovering from a bad back, a legacy left over from my nursing days, either that or I am getting old!  Totnes is a long way for me to travel but I get to see my family, especially my 91 year old Nan who has had a couple of bad falls lately so I feel it is especially important this time.  I do feel very lucky to be in my forties and still have a Grandparent alive and   Louis to have a Great Nan.  I was lucky to know both sets of Grandparents and also to have two sets of Great Grandparents.  Mum also has a stand at NM3 and she has also been busy this week packing and pricing.

A small selection of what I am taking.  I still have some things to pack.

The beautiful Confit pot was a great find this week.  We have a little antiques centre not far from us and I found a couple of little gems hidden amongst the usual rubbish that is usually for sale there!

I also found this beautiful hand embroidered Chinese panel that had been crudely framed and literally had the edges taped as it was too big for the frame....sacrilege!!  Andy very painstakingly removed it from the frame and the offending tape and it will be coming with me to Totnes.

Lastly I will leave you with a picture of what our pear tree produced this year.  I will be taking some down for Mum along with some windfall apples and newly laid eggs from our chickens.  Hopefully see you on Saturday if you are able to make it.  Have a great weekend.
Jo xx

Tuesday, 13 September 2011

Victorian Patchwork

I was very lucky yesterday to buy a gorgeous Victorian Hexagon Patchwork quilt from a lovely lady I buy from regularly.  She usually has the most gorgeous eiderdowns for sale but this time I came away with this beautiful hexagon patchwork....and three eiderdowns...well I couldn't leave them behind now could I?

It is just exquisite, and fairly large.

It must have taken hours of painstaking work with all those little hexagons to piece together.

There is only slight damage to a couple of the hexagons otherwise it has weathered well, obviously being stored away safely.  I love how people were so thrifty making beautiful quilts out of all their little scraps of fabric.

It will probably being staying awhile to be coveted and then I may part with it if I can bear to!
  I am busy updating the website today and also have two fairs to get ready for, Northampton Vintage fair on the 17th of September and Totnes Nostalgic Mix 3 on the 24th of September.  Hope you are all having a great week.
Jo xx

Sunday, 11 September 2011

Sunday Antiques Hunt

Hubby and I took an impromptu trip this morning to Brackley Antique Cellar, in Brackley Northamptonshire/Oxfordshire area.  This lovely antiques centre holds many dealers with a good turn over of stock and there is always something interesting as the stands are so varied.

This gorgeous large vintage floral fabric box was the first find of the day.

Covered in the scrummiest of vintage fabrics and in a very large size...possibly staying!

5 1/2 yards of the most gorgeous beaded 20's trim and in such good unused condition.  I was lucky to find it in such a large quantity and it will be coming to Totnes Nostalgic Mix 3 with me.

I was really thrilled to find an antique milliners hat block as I recently sold my own.  I have wanted one in this shape for ages.

I am about to wax it to bring out the shine.  It is such a lovely, tactile object and was an very good price also which pleased hubby who in turn didn't mind parting with the contents of his wallet!  We also met Debbie (Home thoughts from Vintage Wants) and her hubby.  They have a stand at Brackley.  It really is a fantastic place and you will need a good couple of hours to nose round as there is so much to look at...well worth the trip.  Have a wonderful week.
Jo xx

Thursday, 8 September 2011

Little Textile Treasures

I have been having a rummage through the cupboard in our spare bedroom where I knew I had squirrelled away some little bits and pieces that I purchased many moons ago.  I uncovered some little antique dolls dresses that I had bought in a lovely antique shop in Honiton when we lived in Devon.  Sadly this gorgeous shop is no longer there.  The lady who ran the shop with her hubby always had the most delicious little antique dolls and dolls clothes for sale.  I always enjoyed rummaging through them to find something for my Victorian doll to wear.

I will be honest I am not really a doll person, my thing is antique bears, but I couldn't resist her when I saw her in an antique shop many moons ago.  For all you doll experts out there she certainly isn't the finest of antique dolls but I love her.

She is so pretty and I bought the silk bonnet and fine lawn dress from this lady in Honiton.

Yes, she even has pants (bloomers) on...I always check, do you?

This little assortment of dolls dresses and an apron also came from Honiton.  The little apron is too small for my doll so I think I will be selling this little group at my next fair.

The apron is made from the finest lawn cotton and edged with beautiful handmade lace.  I am sure some of these clothes would have been made by the children who owned the dolls.  I own a 1930's Steiff bear who is dressed in a blue velvet hand made ensemble.

During my rummage I also came across these two little vintage children's coat hangers.

A little vintage children's Chinese jacket.

From dolls clothes to this beautiful late 19th early 20th century wedding dress.  I cannot believe that someone actually wore this it is so tiny.

The boned bodice doesn't actually fit on my mannequin (who isn't large) so I have to display it separately.  It is also very fragile so I wouldn't want to pull it around too much.  Even with a corset on can you believe people were that tiny.....this would fit a child now!

It does make a lovely display though don't you think?  I am going to carry on my rummaging and see what else I can find.  Enjoy the rest of the week, and I hope you haven't been blown away with the gale force winds!!
Jo xx

Monday, 5 September 2011

Shades Of Autumn

Well here in Derbyshire it is certainly turning very Autumnal.  The whole week is forecast gale force winds and rain....Mmmm just what we all need!  However there is a nicer side to Autumn, I love the colours of the trees as they turn (I don't like the mess they make) and I love battening down the hatches indoors ready for the onset of the colder weather.  I am in the throes of getting out winter quilts and Welsh blankets in readiness.

I also had a lucky find yesterday, from Freecycle of all places.  We were listing some bits and pieces unearthed in the garage (Hubby has been very busy tidying up the bomb site that was our garage) when eagle eyed me spotted a large picnic basket on offer.  I emailed the lady and last evening went to pick it up.

I know, a bit late in the season but I couldn't resist especially as it is a lovely large vintage basket.  As you can see it has had a bit of a makeover with the ticking fabric holding the wonky lids together and a Toile lavender heart.

The front garden has also had a bit of a tidy up in readiness for the cooler weather.  Hubby spent ages weeding the knot garden (or what will eventually become one) and we replanted the window boxes with evergreens and heathers.

It is a lot tidier now and makes the front of the cottage look better.

I even got on the step ladder and cleaned down the front porch and oiled the Oak front door.  Of course it had to have a heart hanging from it...suitably rustic of course.

One of the cast iron window boxes..they weigh a tonne!

Our lovely old apple tree is laden with apples once more ready to be picked this weekend.  It is reputed to be over 100 years old!  Our lovely neighbour has lived next door for 56 years and it was an old tree then she tells me.  It is lovely because she can remember how the cottage looked when it was still two dwellings.  We have managed to trace it back to at least 1850-1860  so very early Victorian and I have a picture of how one side looked in 1930!

The garden is still very green at the moment but that will all change in the coming weeks.  We have another apple tree and two pear trees that are laden with fruit so I think it's going to be shared with the neighbours with some left over for cooking.

A little bit more Autumnal colour, just to get us in the mood.  Have a wonderful week whatever you are doing.  Thank you for all the lovely uplifting comments and hello to all my new followers.
Jo xx