Monday 25 October 2010

A Great Weekend at the Vintage and Homemade Fair

Saturday was the Vintage and Homemade Fair and my mum and I had a really lovely day. All of the stallholders had lush selections of vintage and handmade goodies and it was great to meet lots of fellow bloggers, old and new, including fair organisers Ann of Vintage at the Cornerhouse and Debbie of Home Thoughts from Vintage Wants, Jo of Hesta and the Pugs, Wend of Ticking Stripes, Sharon of The Crafty Trundler, Lindsay of Elsie Sparrow and Gill  The Vintage Gardener and her husband.
I managed to restrain myself and stick to buying Christmas presents rather than bags of stuff for me. There was a great turn out and even children that had been dragged along seemed to enjoy themselves. I had a little chuckle when I overheard a young boy telling his younger brother off for touching the felt poppies I’d made and was selling in aid of the Poppy Appeal. ‘Don’t touch those! They’re special ones…they’re handmade you know!!’ Glad to see he attributed such value to something handmade, lol. You would have thought they were made of gold they way he emphasised the 'handmade' part. I made £23 for the Poppy Appeal so thank you to everybody who bought them! I wish I’d made more poppies as I ran out quite quickly and mum and I even had to take ours off for a lady to buy.

I look very vain having only taken photos of my own stall, but we used my mum’s camera for most of the pics so I’m hoping there are some good ones on there of all the lovely stalls.

Friday 22 October 2010


Firstly, a big hello to all my new followers, and secondly a big apology for not having replied to comments yet. I have had such a busy week at work that I haven't checked Blogger or my emails for two whole days. I didn't even have chance to blog about my lovely Mum doing a giveaway to promote my blog, thanks Mum! So today I will be catching up on comments, finishing bits off for the Fair tomorrow and dealing with some silly Ebay buyers who don't understand how it works and launch paypal disputes before contacting me, or insist on sending items back that are in fact brand new and perfect. Grrr. Thanks for all the lovely comments, I really appreciate it  x 

p.s. Lily's in season at the moment (because I bought her as a sort of rescue I wasn't sure if she'd been spayed), and she's thoroughly exhausted after harassing my Mum's poor Alfie (who's ben castrated) to death with unwelcome advances and general flirtaciousness.

Sunday 17 October 2010

The Sun Has Got its Hat On

The sun's so bright in my craft room today that I can barely see the laptop screen. I think I'll carry on being blinded as it seems terrible to be shutting the blinds on probably the last bit of sun we're going to get. I hope everybody's having a lovely weekend! I'm off to my mum's later for a rummage in the loft (checking what I have up there for the Bicycle Bazaar in a couple of weeks) followed by a roast dinner. Yum Yum.

Here's a few pics of my trial run at setting up my stall. I think my table at home's much smaller than the one we'll get at the fair but it gave me some idea of what to take. Sorting through the stuff from my grandad's house, washing everything, setting up my pretend stall and then packing and pricing it all took me the entire day and now I'm pretty exhausted and have uncomfortable and horrid looking tonsils. I forget that with my Chronic Fatigue the key is to pace myself, but when I have things to do and a burst of energy I tend to use it all up in the fear it won't last very long. 

I'll be taking along much more than I have in the pics, including two triple dressing table mirrors and some lovely embroidered linens. Also, I'm not at any kind of landmark in terms of followers or the amount of time I've been blogging, but I thougt it was high time I put together some goodies for a giveaway. I'm hoping to get myself organised within the next couple of weeks and once I've done so I will post about the giveaway x

Saturday 16 October 2010

Vintage and Home Made Fair Preparations

Next week is the Vintage and Home Made Fair and I’m getting very nervous, mainly over how to set up my stall. I have only sold at the Bicycle Basket Bazaar before and we aren’t allowed the luxury of a table there, just a bike to display things around. I’ve decided to pull my craft table out and do a practice run of setting up to calm my nerves. It will also give me an idea of what and how much to take.

On Thursday my mum, stepdad, nan, granddad, Lily and I all headed to Liverpool to visit my great grandad in his new care home. The home was really nice and he’s settled in well, cheating at cards and joking around with all of the staff. While we were in Liverpool my nan thought it best that we start clearing some things out of my great grandad’s house, as he’s now a permanent resident in the home and until his house is empty he will have to continue paying council tax. Grandad’s taken all the bits and pieces he wants around him to his new home so everything that was left was to be shared out between family members or skipped, and my nan said I may as well take anything kitsch (or quiche as she jokingly calls it) for myslf or for my stall. It felt a bit strange taking grandad’s belongings, but everyone agreed that it was better they went to my house or people who wanted them rather than in a skip.

My great grandad smokes like a chimney, as did my great grandma (we called her Gaga), so the boxes and boxes of stuff I’ve brought back all need a god airing, febreezing and washing. That’ll keep me busy for at least today and tomorrow.

Up in grandad’s loft we found a stack of old War Illustrated magazines and a big bag of bunting my Gaga must have made, which was then brought out for every Royal occasion. It’s now flapping in the wind drying on my washing line.

Have a lovely weekend everyone x

Saturday 9 October 2010

A Crafty Weekend

I’ve been having a lovely weekend (I don’t work Fridays so mine begins then) and have been making a few bits and pieces ready for the Vintage and Handmade Fair in a few weeks. So far I’ve made a few rings (using decorative acrylic designs my Mum made a while ago), some tiny daisy studs and waxed Irish linen friendship bracelets with dinky gold and silver tone charms. I also experimented with making some cake stands and smaller cupcake/jewellery stands. Once I’ve bought some cake stands fittings I’ll have ago at drilling plates to make in to two and three tier stands, but in the meantime I have been busy gluing vintage cake plates to vintage glass candlesticks, and turning upturned cups and sandwich plates into cupcake stands. The handles of the upturned tea cups mean you can whisk them into a room rather elegantly too. Today I’m working on more button badges as these seem to be quite popular at the Bicycle Basket Bazaar and I’ve chosen to use vintage fabrics with small detailing on. I’ll also make a few more using old stamps and other recycled bits and bobs. 

On a totally different subject, my mum, stepdad and I are attempting to empty the garage, as the garage my mum rents for all our ‘oh my god I love it and have to have it’ larger finds is leaking and we can’t really ask for the roof to be repaired because technically you’re only meant to have a car in there, not mountains of furniture. We’ve also realised that we need to stop buying furniture just because it’s beautiful, because we have nowhere to put it and it’s not that easy to EBay when you have to arrange a courier and have people emailing you with silly questions. So, I’ve been pro-active and upon seeing that my favourite girly gift shop, Aspire, was opening a new store in Solihull, I emailed them with an offer of an art deco dressing table. Their shops aren’t the usual ‘put everything on shelves’ type, they have dressing tables and vintage cabinets adorned with all their lovely wares. The owners loved the dressing table and very kindly offered me a gift voucher, so as of tomorrow the garage will be a little bit emptier and my vintage shoe rack will be a bit fuller. Yes I’ve already mentally spent the gift voucher!

I have wanted these beauties for over a year but since all my money was ploughed into my New York trip and my new house I haven’t been able to buy them.
I’m also very excited about seeing my old dressing table in all its glory when the shop opens. It is such a beautiful piece of furniture and I’m glad that it’s going to a good home.

Wednesday 6 October 2010

Seven Things

Thanks to Pene at Scrap My Midlife Crisis for passing me the Versatile Blog Award! Pene’s blog is well worth a look…she’s even lived in a castle!
The rules are to link to the blogger who sent you the award, and the harder part; to share 7 interesting facts about myself. Well, here are 7 facts, although I can’t promise they’ll be interesting.

1. I love dogs. Any type; scruffy, smelly, big or small, but I particularly love terriers. They’re so cheeky and full of naughtiness. My baby is Lily a Scottish terrier, and although I no longer live at my mum’s I class the dogs there as a bit mine too. There’s Betty the Chihuahua, Jack the Scottie and Alfie the Westie.

2. I have a BA (Hons.) degree in American Studies and English from Keele. When people ask what I did at uni and I give my reply, people generally go, ‘Huh, one of those Mickey Mouse degrees?’ Well no, but I did study Mickey Mouse (I did a unit on Disney and Popular Culture). My degree was a dual honours so I got to study two different subjects. I mainly chose film and history modules in American Studies. Sometimes I really miss studying, but put me back there writing my dissertation and I’d probably cry.

3. I’m not thick, but I can be very dim! During my first year at uni I embarrassed myself in an American Studies lecture by shouting in shock, ‘Oh, is America connected to Canada then?’ Geography defiantly isn’t my strong point and I had only ever seen America on a map showing just America.

4. I live in a new house, but my favourite houses are Victorian terraces and Regency style homes. I love anything with original features and ‘oooh’ and ‘ahhh’ at the original features in people’s homes when I’m out on visits for work. Very unprofessional of me, but I can’t help it. Unfortunately lots of people don’t seem to appreciate their house's original features as much as I do.

5. I have Aspergers, but wasn’t diagnosed until I was 25. My friends and family, just like me, thought I was eccentric. It wasn’t until I started working for my uncle, who is a disability consultant, that we realised my ‘oddities’ were similar to those with Aspergers and I was referred for an assessment. It’s a bit confusing for people (even me), because I’m so called ‘high functioning’ in a lot of things, but at the same time struggle to do things such as tell the time, cross the road and understand money.
6. I’m a really visual person and love anything ‘beautiful’. When I was younger I would fill my pockets with stones, because they were all so beautiful to me that I couldn’t pick up just a few. I once came home from a pebble beach with three large bags full of them. My Nan made my cousins help carry them and they caught onto the fact that I was obsessed with them. Later that day they picked up some stones and sold them to me, knowing I couldn’t not have them. By the time my Nan found out I’d spent £15. They were made to give me my money back, and the stones. In hindsight there were big signs I had Aspergers!

7. Family and friends are really important to me. I have a really big and close extended family and find it strange that others don’t. My friends also have large families and close families. All of my friends are my best friends and I don’t see the point in spending time with people I only sort of like. I also really like my own company.

Hope I managed to make my answers semi-interesting!

I now need to send this award onto 5 lovely blogger friends.

1. Annie at Vintage at the Cornerhouse
2. Jenny at Winnibrigg's House
3. Kitty at Pea Green Kitty.
4. Annie at  Birdcages & Butterflies.
5. Vix at Vintage Vixon.
Can't wait to read your answers! xxx

Sunday 3 October 2010

I Want, I Want

I was browsing through the Miss Selfridge website today when I spotted a few must haves. In general I’d much rather wear vintage clothes, the 1940s and 50s being my favourite eras, but finding vintage clothing in anything above a size 12 can be challenging and so I tend to look for modern vintage inspired pieces. I love these.  

I think I also need this handbag, although I’m torn between this style and their satchel version. Ok, yes I have millions of vintage handbags, but I love leopard print and these are vintage inspired in shape.

I also love these dresses from Littlewoods, and would quite like to buy Holly Willoughby’s figure too.

I’ve decided to do a load of EBay listings today, mainly vintage bags, to fund some of the above. At least I don’t need to buy an footwear to go with them. I’ve got my Evans biker boots (my calves are far too chubby for standard shop boots), 80s black slouch boots and 80s brown leather and suede boots. I dread the day that my trusty 80s boots die. I’ve had them both re-heeled numerous times and they’re just sooo damn comfy. Boots, the above dresses, my beautiful new Per Una coat and black tights or leggings and I’m sorted. I’ll start digging out the pashminas and vintage leather gloves when it gets even colder. Oh I love winter clothes, can you tell?

Here's a few things that I've put on EBay.

Saturday 2 October 2010

Jumble Sale Mayhem

I spent most of yesterday re-organising my spare bedroom, which is in fact no longer a spare bedroom as it doesn’t have a bed. The IKEA day bed was put on eBay, my bag rails moved to another side of the room and a set of shelves from the very full garage was wrestled up my stairs. My vintage fair and bazaar stock was beginning to takeover the house and I decided that it was time I had some semi-organised space for it all. Also, the fact that it’s usually all bubble wrapped in boxes means it’s really hard to see what stuff I want to take to the fairs and bazaars without spending an entire day unwrapping then re-wrapping everything. So now I have this, just a small selection of my stuff as boxes and boxes are still in mum’s loft. I’ll eventually paint the shelves white when I have time. (Excuse the terrible pics) 

I spend lots of time at car boot sales and in charity and tip shops, but today was my very first jumble sale. I was amazed by how aggressive they are! I was shoved and pushed by numerous grannies and had to battle to the bric-a-brac table. My mum, having been to many a jumble sale assumed I’d know what it was like and hadn’t warned me. I was totally overwhelmed but still managed to come back with bags full. I could have cried when I saw a lady walk past me with a vintage sewing basket in the shape of a cottage with its original box. I definitely need to get better at jumble saleing. Oh well, practice makes perfect.

We went to three recycling shops on the way home and needless to say my shelves are now even fuller.