Wednesday, 4 December 2013

Vintage In The Shires In Stratford Upon Avon

Colourful Melamine From The Stratford Vintage Fair

We found these summery cups from the 1960s on Teddy and Mavis's stall when the fair visited Stratford upon Avon for the first time on Saturday. The fair took place in the council chamber of the Town Hall and the room looked beautiful as it had been decorated for Christmas by the friendly Town Council staff.

Lovely Embroidery From Teddy & Mavis

I brought this pretty tablecloth when I visited Blighty Bazaar in Leamington Spa last month only to learn that it too came from Teddy and Mavis as they have a display there! It must have taken a long time to sew and I am happy that it has survived the years and changes in taste and fashion and that it finally found it's way to me. Hollyhocks and asters are the flowers of late summer.

The  Stratford Fair Takes Shape 
The busy traffic outside meant that the stalls were just about ready when the time came to open the doors and the proceedings were watched over by the Bard himself who nestled on a ledge in the corner.

Stratford's Most Famous Son
The stalls were piled high with some lovely things, the light pouring in through the windows made the glass and delicate china sparkle, this display is by Christine from Sunny Morning Vintage.

Sunny Morning Vintage

Suzanne from Hearts & Kisses brought along some lovely handmade Christmas gifts and for once I managed to take a photo of her lovely stall before the fair started! Suzanne regularly has a stall with us and will be at the Market Harborough Xmas Vintage Fair on Saturday. Suzanne is also an agent for the leading magazine, Homes & Antiques.

Hearts & Kisses From Suzanne

Good quality vintage textiles make wonderful additions to the 'vintage' home, eiderdowns are perfect for snuggling into on cold winter evenings and a pieces of patchwork can be incorporated into cushions, bags and dresses by clever crafters. Teddy and Mavis also brought along a wonderful tinplate railway station toy which I regret not buying as it was there when I returned to their stall.

Vintage Textiles From Teddy & Mavis

If there is enough space we like to bring a few things along to place near the entrance to welcome people as they come into the fair. 

Some Things We Brought Along
 I found the Britannia Compendium several years ago in the now gone Dodo Antiques in Olney. Since then I have noticed that reproduction sets are being sold in gift shops but it is nice to have an original made by Chad Valley in the 1930s.

An Eclectic Mix

Vintage of course does not only come in shades of pink, blue and yellow. This display of all sorts of things received lots of curious attention. The vintage head and torso is an anatomical model from the 60s to aid in the teaching of the basics of the circulatory system!
China & Handbags

Linda and Jen from Curious Cuckoo Vintage brought along some china, a rail of clothes, a pile of handbags and a very distinctive 'shocking' pink chair.

Perfect For The 60s Studio
Christmas will soon be upon us and there was a seasonal feel to the stalls with lots of vintage baubles and paper decorations on display. Original decorations from the 1950s and 1960s look lovely when used together to decorate the 'vintage' tree.


A Merry vintage Christmas

This copy of "Chatterbox"is from 1919 and original Christmas wares are always very popular, the appearance of the Bird's Custard Jugs (featured in an earlier post) on a television commercial for a prominent supermarket caused a flutter in prices although I am not over eager for Tesco to be regarded as a champion of vintage! 

A Richly Decorated Room

The fox prowling on the shelf is on display of one of the stalls rather than being part of the fixtures and fittings at the Town Hall. 

Until We Return

By the time the bunting had been taken down and the poster collected up it was time to say goodbye to Stratford. The winter skies had darkened as we headed into The Garrick Inn for a drink before the drive home to Northampton. The fair will be returning to Stratford next year, with little time to rest before then we have the forthcoming Xmas Vintage Fair in Market Harborough to prepare for and look forward to.

Saturday 7th December

Wednesday, 27 November 2013

Vintage Stratford & Saturday's Fair

The Fair's First Visit To Stratford

The Stratford Vintage Fair is taking place on Saturday, our home for day will be the Town Hall which is situated on the corner of Sheep Street and the High Street. The Town Hall is the building in the foreground on the left hand side of the picture.

The High Street In Bygone Stratford

I cannot remember where we found a little book called Shakespeare-Land although I like to imagine that it was on a summer's day several years ago when we visited Charlecote Park and stumbled across a tiny second-hand book store where the cold stone walls provided welcome respite from the heat outside. It is thought that the 'Bard of Avon' was arrested for steeling deer from the park at Charlecote.


Anne Hathaway's Cottage
The book was published in the 1940s and contains some lovely colour plates and I used a picture of the High Street showing the Garrick Inn on the poster for the fair. The style of the watercolours is very much 'of their time' and depicts places of particular interest to anyone treading the Shakespeare trail.  Anne Hathaway was married to Shakespeare and her childhood home can be found on Cottage Lane.

Shakespeare's Birthplace On Henley Street
Henley Street is a short walk away from the Town Hall and it is here that Shakespeare was born, the house is very pretty and has a rose garden which looks lovely in June. Shakespeare's father became Mayor of Stratford and William attended the local grammar school.


Mary Arden's House

Mary Arden was Shakespeare's mother and she lived a couple of miles from Stratford in a village called Wilmcote.  

The Shakespeare Memorial Theatre

The Shakespeare Memorial Theatre opened in 1932 and sits beside the River Avon. Just over half of the funds raised for it's construction came from America.

Holy Trinity Church

Shakespeare is buried in Holy Trinity Church which is situated on Old Town and it is probably the most visited parish church in England.

The Guild Chapel

Shakespeare's England can be found by visiting these places and in a similar way one finds a way to connect to the past through 'vintage'. How nice it is that everyday things from a bygone time have the chance to become cherished again.

Stratford Town Hall 2013

This is the Town Hall on a rainy winter's day. Reassuringly the dark coloured noticeboard hanging on the wall behind the lamp-post can be seen in the vintage picture of the High Street painted seventy years earlier.

Wednesday, 20 November 2013

Vintage In Phippsville & The Northampton Vintage Fair

Orange Roses At Vintage French Finds

One of the nice things about preparing for the Northampton Vintage Fair is that I get to walk around the area surrounding St Matthew's Church which is known as Phippsville and takes it's name from Northampton brewer Pickering Phipps who provided funds for the building of the church. St Matthews Parish Centre which is situated just behind the church has been home to the Northampton fair since the very start and we are really looking forward to returning on Saturday.


The Italian Shop Northampton

It just so happens that two of my favourite places in Northampton are in Phippsville. The wonderful Vintage French Finds and The Italian Shop Northampton are just a couple of minutes walk away from the church and both are really worth a visit if you are coming along to the fair. I loved the vases of orange roses which were decorating the tables.

A Very Chic Sewing Box

Vintage French Finds specialise in interior design and bring some unique original pieces and other wonderful finds from France over to their shop which is at 114A Kingsley Park Terrace. 

Lovely Interior Design 

The sumptuous displays are set out in a series of rooms and look fantastic and include everything from a set of Pastis glasses to large mirrors, chandeliers and freshly painted armoires. The attention to detail obvious in the displays and the excellent taste of the proprietors Carmela and David has created something quite special.

Gallic  Charm Vintage Style

On the day I visited David was preparing for a delivery of Christmas trees for display so I imagine the place looks even more lovely now.

More French Vintage Finery

I noticed some lovely vintage suitcases and a very smart oak writing desk/bureau as well as lots of bits and pieces that would be perfect for a 'cuisine vintage'.

Elegantly Cool

The elegant off white decoration throughout creates the perfect ground for the richness of everything on display. One could easily visit and decorate and furnish an entire room or leave clutching something beautiful intended for someone special.

The Parapluies Of Phippsville

I walked down the corridor past the collection of fine umbrellas and arrived in the courtyard where I found some lovely enamel jugs and other rustic wares. 

Rustic Vintage From France

Walking away from Vintage French Finds I passed St Matthews on my way to The Italian Shop and stopped to put up a couple of posters on the wall around the church garden (where we have stalls on the lawn at the fairs in summer). The Italian Shop is a short walk from the fair along Collingwood Road and can be found on the corner at 52 Ashburnham Road.

St Matthew's Church Northampton 

We will be serving tea and homemade cakes in the 'old style' tea-room at the fair however if you are looking for ingredients for a special meal you will find everything you need including advice about preparing authentic dishes from the friendly owner Adriana. I love the retro formica tables, oilcloth dressed tables and mix of modern and vintage which is very much Italian in style.

 The Italian Shop Northampton

I wish I had taken a photo of the lovely display of panettone in the window, they make great  Xmas gifts and are lovely sliced and toasted although I am not sure if that is how they are supposed to be eaten, I will enquire when I visit again tomorrow.


See You At The Fair - The Doors Open At 11am

Hope to see you at the fair on Saturday.

Sunday, 17 November 2013

A Rainy Day Indeed!

I used the picture of the girl and her scottie sheltering from the rain on the poster for last Saturday's Olney Vintage Fair and as it turned out to be very much in tune with the weather on the day. It was raining when we arrived at the Church Hall and it did not stop until three o'clock! It was amazing that so many people braved the conditions and came along - thank you.

Vintage Inspired Christmas Gifts From Home Spun With Love

Sue from Home Spun With Love brought displayed some lovely handmade Christmas gifts including these lovely sewn cards decorated with lace and ribbon. Sue will be joining us again in Market Harborough in December.

"Wishing You A Merry Christmas"

Birds (the food company) gave away these custard jugs to customers who had collected enough vouchers, they are from the 1950s and would look great on the vintage dining table on Christmas Day.

Custard Jugs From Lost Property Vintage

Cherry from Merriman's Vintage Jamboree displayed some lovely felt wreaths that she had made especially for the season. Cherry specialises in original vintage wares related to children and has a permanent display in Blighty Bazaar in Leamington Spa.

The Colours of Christmas - Handmade Felt Wreaths

The Church Hall in Olney was renovated during the summer and its colour scheme of red, blue and off-white added to the nostalgic ambience. Although the fair in Olney is quite small when compared to our other fairs it also has a charm all of it's own (a charm which once extended to the use of a vintage pail to catch water from a burst pipe high up in the eaves - last February if I recall correctly).

An Eclectic Display In The Alcove

The stalls looked lovely and nestled into the corners.

Sugden & Daughters

Sugden & Daughters brought along a great collection of country styled vintage wares and they have just opened a shop, The Barn at The Red Lion Pub in Yardley Hastings.

Vintage Jewellery

Vintage jewellery is always popular and there were three specialist stalls at the Olney Fair.

Vintage Fashion From Dulcie Britain

Vicky from Dulcie Britain created a small boutique in the corner of the room. 

Pip n Mix

Thanks to Pip and Mick for joining us after a busy three days at the previous weekends Vintage & Handmade Market in Milton Keynes.

Afternoon Tea - American Style

I loved this "Fiesta" ware tea-pot which comes from the USA and was brought along by Jo from Lost Property Vintage.

Vintage Leather & Militaria

I love old Gladstone bags and vintage leather cases although they are increasingly difficult to find as are uniforms and ephemera from the period.

Saturday 23rd November

We are looking forward to returning to St Matthew's for the Northampton Vintage Fair on 
23rd November. We will be serving homemade cakes in the 'old style' tea room and the halls will be full of stalls. Best wishes and hope to see you at the fair.

Monday, 4 November 2013

Swing Dance At The Stamford Vintage Fair

'Vintage Marvells'

The Stamford Vintage Fair took place place last Saturday and there were some lovely stalls as well as some great swing dancing on the stage. Visitors and friends of the fair entered the reception room and were greeted by rails of vintage fashion and a gramophone playing Lili Marlene and The Victory Polka before stepping into the wonderful Blue Room which was full of colourful stalls.

'Sew Born Again'

Large gilt framed mirrors and the soft reflected light created a wonderfully atmospheric and calming setting for the vibrant displays, a kind of blue is definitely a good backdrop for vintage. 

'Antoinette & Fred's Vintage'

Bags, hats and accessories are always popular at our fairs and it is always nice to see Fred and Antoinette who always join us when the fair visits Stamford and Market Harborough.


Country Shades In The Ballroom

Large double doors in the Blue Room lead into the Ballroom, stalls were lined all around the room and formed an aisle down the centre. The tables were full of all sorts of original vintage wares, some lovely vintage inspired handmade items and rails of clothes, I spotted someone walking away with a lovely 1930s display cabinet.

Pretty Homewares

There is a stage at the end of the Ballroom which we usually use for stalls but on this occasion we did things a little differently. We met Nat and Chris at the Vintage Open Day at the Derngate Theatre in Northampton in September when they were had a stall selling some lovely accessories and 40s inspired hats. We really enjoyed the Lindy Hop class they gave and hoped that they would be able to join us at some point.

Nat & Chris Swing Dancing At The Stamford Fair - Fab!

It was lovely that they were able to come along on Saturday, everyone loved their swing dancing and they received a great round of applause. There is a short clip which you can view on the fair's Facebook page, VintageInTheShires. Nat and Chris will be joining us again soon - hooray!

Many Thanks To Nat & Chris

The late afternoon performance really livened things up - fabulous (see the clip to hear the applause).


Vintage Prints & Pinks

We decided to take a few things along to the fair, the 1930s prints are the last of a batch we picked up during the summer, the ones with dogs are very popular.

Vintage Pearls

Costume jewellery is always popular at our fairs and there are usually two or three stalls specialising in original necklaces, brooches and accessories such as gloves. 

Vintage Brooches

Other stalls specialise in items such as ceramics, textiles or kitchenalia, Graham brought along a collection of tea and coffee ware from the 50s-70s including some Midwinter pieces and will be joining us again when we return to Market Harborough in December.


Vintage Coffee Time

Hats complete any vintage outfit and there usually quite a few to be found on the stalls, many are original whilst others are made using traditional patterns from the 30s and 40s.

Hats Off To The Dancers!

I liked this chenille door curtain from the 1930s, they have brilliant colours and are a great way to keep out the chill of winter in authentic style.

30s Chenille

It is 'all go' at home as we are preparing for the Olney Vintage Fair on Saturday when we are looking forward to returning to St Peter & St Paul's Church Hall. The doors open at 11am!

Saturday 9th November