Wednesday, 27 June 2012

See You At The Fair On Saturday

Making Their Way In Style

We hope the 4th Market Harbough Vintage Fair is part of your weekend itinerary. The fair will be returning to Market Harborough on Saturday, our home for the day will be the lovely Three Swans Hotel which is situated on the High Street at number 21.

The 4th Market Harborough Vintage Fair
Saturday 30th June 11-4

 I designed the poster for this fair back in February when it was freezing cold, I choses roses as the image on the poster because I was thinking ahead to June which, given the strangeness of our recent seasons, remains the best month to appreciate this beautiful flower.

The Three Swans Hotel - 21 The High Street
 Market Harborough LE16 7NJ

The fair is taking place in the Cromwell and Fairfax Suites which are at the rear of the hotel, easily found by walking through the arch and across the pretty courtyard. 

To Be Seen In Tomorrow's Harborough Mail

Hopefully the advert which will appear in the local newspaper tomorrow will help to let everyone know that the fair is in town. The fair doors will open at 11am. As well as lots of stalls selling original vintage homewares and beautiful vintage inspired handmade there will also be two tables of homemade cakes waiting for you in the 'pop-up' old style tea-room which will be furnished with roses, old china, embroidered cloths and the aforementioned tempting cakes.

Something I Will Be Doing My Best To Do

The spirit of the 40s, and indeed the spirit of the 30s, 50s and 60s is very much part of our fairs. The fashions and household effects that have survived the years, the sorts of things that you will find at our fairs wonderfully presented by our lovely stallholders, look great in todays 'vintage' influenced world. Something that we perhaps do not think about so much when we take home a vintage find to cherish, is that every single piece has a history.

Vintage Toys & Tales From Childhood
I bought this sailing boat from a vintage fair in Winslow last year, I suppose what I mean is that I get curious about who owned this toy in the past, and more deeply what was the significance of the item, in this instance, a toy sailing boat from the 30s/40s, to the person whose toy it was. Who bought it? Was it a birthday? Although slightly ethereal such thoughts are part of why I like vintage and why I find original things interesting. I am not talking about ancient things like antiquities, I mean the things of our parents' and grandparents' time.

A Glimpse Into The Past

Sometimes there is a tantalising piece of evidence. Many of you will have seen the old shop till I use at the fairs, inside the lid there is an inscription, scratched into the wood by a pencil. Inside a heart are four girls' names, Mary, Molly, Thelma and Margaret and the doodling is dated Valentine's Day 1945. What is even more fascinating is that someone took the time to add, some years later, the date when three of  the girls 'departed' the shop where this till was used. Was it perhaps Mary who recorded the 'moving on' of her friends, was she the one left behind to mind the shop and the memories?

The Wonders Of Digital

As much as I like older things I would struggle if I did not have use of a digital camera, email and modern printing, here is the poster 'blown up' and on the streets hopefully getting lots of attention from the people of south Leics.

However you are making your way to the fair we wish you a safe and pleasant journey, you will find a warm welcome waiting for you when you arrive. Best wishes and "See you on Saturday'.

Monday, 18 June 2012

Rainy Days, Saved By Vintage Scraps And Market Harborough Ho!

1930s Style

A combination of the poor weather of recent weeks and of having organised three fairs in four weeks (Olney, Stamford & The Jubilee Garden Party) has meant that I have not had much opportunity to find any vintage treasures. However I have managed to finish the last bits of decorating in our kitchen (a simple job that I contrived to turn into a task of Homeric proportion! - I started in early April with the statement "it will be done in 2 or 3 weeks" and now understand how Odysseus felt when it took him 10 years to return home after the war with Troy was done and dusted).

Glamour In The Most Unexpected Places
I found that I had little to blog about as I had not been out then my saviour appeared to me in the form of an old vintage scrapbook that has been resting on a shelf at home for a number of years. The faded and worn thin red cloth that bound the scrapbook promised little but inside were hundreds of beautiful images.

The Profile Of Vintage

Whoever collected the images and took the time to cut and paste them onto the pages created a sort of time capsule. Many of the images are of ladies pictured in striking poses, capturing forever the glamour and style of the 1930s. Interestingly men are not depicted widely and only seldom appear, often as adjuncts to the ladies portrayed or as comic figures.

The Bank Manager Calls?

I guess the scrapbook was compiled by a girl or young woman. Part of the fun of looking at old scrapbooks is trying to pull the strands of evidence together in an attempt to understand what thoughts are being captured and what stories are being told.

Stop In The Name Of The Law
(and come to the fair in Market Harborough!)

Another theme in the collected images is of ladies in a variety of domestic settings.

Corn Flakes - As Popular Then As Now

The notion of the strong female home maker is probably as 'old as the hills' but this image of a lady in  in her 30s in the 30s (you might need to read that again - it is not a typo) makes me think of my 
grandmother who bought up her seven children in this decade.

The Pantry - An Important Part Of A 30s Home

Women attending to many aspects of home-management is not exclusive to the 30s.

Reminds Me Of Last Week
(when I painted the kitchen floor)

I spent hours looking through the pages, thinking of ways I could bring the images to life in some way. I have annotated a few and have posted them on the fair's Facebook page (a very contemporary utilisation).

The 30s Cottage Garden
Cottage garden scenes, usually with a lady dressed in crinoline are often found on 30s crockery. The sorts of things depicted in the scrapbook can be found for sale at our fairs. Original homewares from the 30s-60s are always well represented on the stalls, we have have wonderful sellers who spend a lot of time and effort to source some lovely pieces.

Market Harborough 30th June 11-4
Our Next Fair!

I drove up to Market Harborough last week to pin up a few posters for the forthcoming fair and as usual I found myself enjoying a cream-tea. Nestled in the corner of the lovely cafe in Joules Yard I tucked into warm scones and strawberry jam.

Joules Of Market Harborough

Joules Yard is where you will find old pine furniture and vintage garden planters, Joules Eating House adjoins the yard and next door is Joules (yes that Joules) clothing shop. All are lovely and worth a visit, I bought a pair of white jeans in the sale. Joules is very much a Harborough institution, the walls of the eating house are lined with old sheet music.

Wayne Hemingway's Festival

While in Joules I picked up a flyer for the forthcoming Vintage Festival at Boughton House, it looks like it is going to be great fun. I am the local correspondent for the festival, here is a link to the Vintage Correspondents (but beware you will see a photo of me in a sleeveless sweater!).
Vicky from Vicky Loves Vintage who regularly has a stall with us will be part of the vintage market at the festival.

The 2nd Vintage Jumble

Thinking ahead to the height of summer you will be able to grab a vintage bargain at the 2nd Vintage Jumble in Northampton. Then two weeks later you will find us in  Olney for our 4th visit to this beautiful market town, the fair in May was a great success and we cannot wait to return.

Find Us In Fabulous Olney In August

I will be driving up to Market Harborough several times before the fair and will keep you posted as the day of the fairs draws closer. Here are a few more pictures from the scrapbook.

New York Skyline

I like this skyline scrap, I think it is New York. The birds below appear a few times in the album, pictured alongside a glass of orange juice.

Does Anyone Know Which Product/Brand
These Three Birds Represent
This last image has been annotated by me, it is an extraordinary and makes me laugh. Best wishes and hope to see you soon.

As The Caption Says
"See You At The Fair"

Sunday, 3 June 2012

Some Photos From Yesterday's Stamford Vintage Fair

My Favourite Image From Yesterday's Fair

I found this Ladybird Book of Garden Flowers as I walked around at the end of yesterday's fair. It has some great illustrations and dates to 1960/61.

Great As Vintage Gifts For Children

I am also a bit sentimental when it comes to summer flowers as I had a garden full of them before our lovely hens started there free-ranging life last June. They have removed every single blade of grass from the lawn, and by jumping and flapping have cleared the lower three feet of the hydrangea which clings to the wall. In their favour they happen to be very entertaining and have provided two eggs per day without a break for months.

When I Had Foxgloves

Yesterday we were in Stamford for our first fair in this magnificent town. Stamford Arts Centre provided us with an elegant home for the afternoon, the chandelier decked ballroom and the mirrored 'Blue Room' looked beautiful as the stalls began to take shape. Many thanks to the very helpful staff at the centre who are doing an amazing job for Stamford and the local area, a venue for many activities and a great meeting place.

Stamford Arts Centre

The rooms were full of brilliantly presented displays by mid-morning and there was a great variety of things to suit the eclectic tastes of contemporary vintage.

Lovely Handmade Cushions, Shades & Original French Pieces

It was great to see Heather from Hellish Designs and Wendy from Ticking Stripes who made the trip down from  Notts to be with us.

Some Love Vintage French Linen & Enamel Ware

Amanda from Charente Vintage also brought along some lovely pieces from France. Amanda, Wendy and Heather will be with us when the fair returns to Market Harborough at the end of June.

Colour & Style From Antoinette's Vintage

Fred and Antoinette's stall caught the eye of the reporter from the Stamford Mercury, reputedly England's oldest newspapers. If you want to have a look at the press release and to see cap wearing the like of which has not been seen since Kevin Rowland or Wayne Hemingway c1981, here is (a rather lengthy!)  link, Fred did make me laugh when he enquired whether the DJ had been hung when the music stopped, a conversation which quickly referenced The Specials and Wigan Casino (a retrieved power lead and the band played on!).

Festive Jubilee Vintage
The Diamond Jubilee celebrations were reflected in the lovely stalls, crammed full of pieces, many dating from the early 50s.

Vintage Finery

Vintage kitchenalia is always popular at our fairs and large enamel pieces can be used to dramatic visual effect in both period and contemporary interiors. Naturally coffee made in an old enamel pot tastes much nicer than that extracted from a modern appliance.

Perfect For Baking & Sunday Lunch

Although not a fan a mustard I have to concede that it is a vital ingredient if you want to make the best cheese scones.

The Quality Of Vintage Packaging

We will be returning to Stamford in December for a seasonal Vintage Fair. We hope you enjoyed the day and wish you well for the remainder of the Jubilee Bank Holiday.

Jubilee Celebrations - 60 Years

I will be blogging again soon as Market Harborough is 27 days and counting.

30th June

See you at the Three Swans in what will hopefully be a 'flaming June'.

Friday, 1 June 2012

Start Your Jubilee Weekend In Stamford

Join The Procession To Stamford Jubilee Vintage Fair

Just time for a short post before I try to get to sleep early in preparation for tomorrow's fair in Stamford.
I used the above the image in the poster for the fair.

The Doors Open At 11am

The fair is taking place in the lovely ballroom of Stamford Arts Centre, situated in the centre of Stamford, surrounded by streets of beautiful 17th & 18th century town houses built of mellow stone.

Stamford Arts Centre
27 St Mary's Street, Stamford. PE9 2DL

There is limited on-street parking outside the venue but plenty of spaces in the numerous nearby public car-parks. The Arts Centre has a popular cafe which serves hot and cold snacks, teas and cake.

Conveniently Located In The Centre Of Town

We hope you have a great bank holiday weekend, if you come to the fair you will receive a warm welcome. Twenty-eight stalls will be waiting for you in a perfect venue in one of Engalnd's most beautiful towns. Best wishes and hope to see you tomorrow.