Auction Finds – Time for Tea?

A quick post, just to show a lovely piece of ephemera I found at a local auction.

Tea Box

Tea Box

These are actually two sides of a rather battered cardboard box.

Tea Pot Picture

Tea Pot Picture

The sides themselves have been damp in the past, so are warped out of shape. It’s difficult to see what they could be used for, given their battered state, but I think that they show a charming snapshot of publicity material from an earlier age.

Advert Text

Advert Text

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Vintage Belts

Every now and then I find something that reminds me of my childhood (which is a nice way of saying I am feeling my age!).

Leather Belt

Leather Belt

I found this pair of belts in a mixed bag of clothing and I was immediately transported back to my early teens. I can remember making belts like this with my slightly older friend and role model in her house down the road.

Back of Belt

Back of Belt

This one isn’t really difficult to make. You cut the symmetrical shapes out of leather and with one shape open at the back, fold the others through the holes, finishing off with leather ties when you get to the desired length.

Side of Belt

Side of Belt

This belt is a little more complicated, made from alternating discs of red leather and fur (I think rabbit), held together by cris-crossed leather laces.

Fur and Leather Belt

Fur and Leather Belt

This should still be straightforward to make.

Front of Belt

Front of Belt

Although I’m not sure if I would want to wear one of these now – in fact, despite happily making them back in the seventies I can’t remember ever wearing one.

An Unusual Money Box

I was surprised to see this unusual money box at our local auction:

Money Box Front

Money Box Front

A little internet searching tells me that it was designed by Mabel Lucie Attwell in 1935, using her characteristic style of illustrations of fairies and animals.

Money Box Side View

Money Box Side View

It’s known as ‘The Fairy Tree’ and was a Biscuit Tin (the conical part forms the money box) for William Crawford & Sons Ltd.

Money Box Base

Money Box Base

Sadly, it sold for £150, so it didn’t come home with me.

 

Little Blue Dress

I do like vintage clothes. But I’ve never really had the confidence to wear full out vintage on a day to day basis, not like the redoubtable vintage blogger Jessica Cangiano at Chronically Vintage.

That doesn’t mean that I am immune to purchasing a few vintage outfits when I see them with the idea that I will wear them at some unspecified future occasion. And so it was that I bought this little fifties beauty:

Front View of Dress

Front View of Dress

I found it in the bottom of a mixed box of old clothes:- mainly Crimpline and Bri-Nylon – certainly nothing to write home about, but the sight of this classic 50s Prom dress got me very excited! I love the full skirt, and the faux belt with a diamante buckle.

Close Up Of Dress Front

Close Up Of Dress Front

It’s made of two layers of fabric, a sky blue ‘satin’ lining, with a over-layer of a nylon tulle fabric with a flock pattern of small white dots and blue and white roses. You can see it best in this picture of the skirt:

Fabric Detail in Skirt

Fabric Detail in Skirt

There was an underskirt of a stiff paper-like material to make the skirt stand out.

When I found it, it was wrinkled and rather grubby. Washing it was scary, as I was scared of damaging the ‘flock’ effect of the pattern and I wasn’t sure how the underskirt and buckle would react to getting wet. In the end, I sealed the buckle inside a plastic bag and turned the dress inside out so the top layers of the skirt went over the bodice and the underskirt could rest on my shoulder while I washed the fabric  parts.

Back View of Dress

Back View of Dress

 

But, as you can see, it turned out OK. However, sadly, it was just a tiny bit smaller that I ever have hope of slimming down to, so my dreams of wearing it to some unspecified future occasion have been dashed.

Close Up Of Dress Back

Close Up Of Dress Back

But it’s not the end of the world. It’s gone to be a bridesmaid’s dress at a vintage wedding so will no doubt get much more admiration than it would stored in my wardrobe.

Something for my Kitchen

I’ve had a couple of nice finds for my kitchen recently.

Fifties Kitchen Clock

Fifties Kitchen Clock

This lovely clock is made of blue and cream glazed pottery. It’s got a Deco vibe, but the mechanism is too recent for it to be a true Deco piece so I think it’s from the fifties.

Pepsi SIgn

Pepsi SIgn

Probably from the sixties, this metal advertising sign is jolly and cheers me up every morning. I’m just a little disappointed that it doesn’t take chalk marks very well so my hope of using it for shopping lists isn’t going to happen!

These both came from auctions, and at a reasonable price, so it is still possible to find these little gems. Needless to say, these are staying with me for the foreseeable future.

Vintage Bangles

Just a quick post today, to share with you these lovely vintage bangles that I found recently.

 

Vintage Bangles

At only £5 each, I thought that they were a relatively inexpensive way to add a ‘pop’ of colour to a modern outfit.

'Beeswax' Bangle

‘Beeswax’ Bangle

The finish on this one reminds me of beeswax candles – I think it’s made of resin. As well as the dimples on the surface, the variations in colour mean it looks different whichever way you look at it.

This bangle is a bit more sophisticated, with ‘gilding’ to the edges of the flower petals.

Gilded Flower Bangle

Gilded Flower Bangle

It’s lined with a thin brassy material and has a clasp and hinge to open it so that it fits closely around the wrist.

Flower Bangle Open

Flower Bangle Open

Sadly, the hinge is a bit delicate so I suspect this will be the least worn of the three.

I have to confess that, although many people would find this a bit creepy, I love this bug bangle.

The Bug Bangle

The Bug Bangle

It’s made from clear resin, and you can see from the irregular outline of the bangle that it wasn’t made recently.

Side View showing Irregularities

Side View showing Irregularities

The resin is tinted blue around the wrist side and clear elsewhere. This means that when you look at the bangle edge on, it looks blue.

Ladybird and Beetles within the Resin

Ladybird and Beetles within the Resin

Set within the clear resin are a series of ‘bugs’ – ladybirds, beetles and even a small scorpion!

More Bugs!

More Bugs!

It wouldn’t suit everyone, but I think it’s great, and I’m enjoying wearing it to jazz up a navy work suit. It’s a great way to combine vintage and modern in a traditional workplace.

Indulging my weakness for sewing

It’s no secret that I have been keen on sewing related crafts since my Mum taught me to sew a long long time ago. As a result I have a major weakness for vintage fabric and all things sewing related. Left to my own devices at a recent auction, I took a punt at a large box of mixed vintage sewing things. I paid a bit more than I was comfortable with as I didn’t have a lot of time to delve deeply into the contents, but I’d spotted a few interesting looking things from (I reckoned) the fifties and so I gritted my teeth and raised my paddle……..

My Mixed Lot of Vintage Sewing Kit

My Mixed Lot of Vintage Sewing Kit

So, when I got it home I had a fun time separating the good from the dross.

Digging deeper into the box

Digging deeper into the box

The woman who had originally owned it was obviously keen on all sorts of fibre based crafts. I found examples of hand woven fabrics:

Hand Woven Items

The handwritten labels make me think they may have been entered in a show.

Tatting and rug making tools:

Tatting and Rugmaking Tools

Tatting and Rugmaking Tools

I have never seen these rug wool measures before, they must pre date pre-cut packs of rug wool.

Rug Wool Measures

Rug Wool Measures

As far as I can tell, you wrap your rug wool around the measure and then cut, running your scissors down a groove on the long side to give lots of wool strands of the same length.

There were also half finished pieces of embroidery and unusual embroidery hoops:

Unusual Friction gripping Embroidery Hoops

Unusual Friction gripping Embroidery Hoops

These plastic/rexine embroidery hoops relied on friction to hold the fabric in place, rather than tightening a screw fitting to tension the fabric.

A part embroidered tea cosy:

Part-finished Embroidered Tea Cosy

Everything I need to make a Golliwog (from the time when this was an innocent toy):

Golly making instructions

Golly making instructions

Gollywog Transfer Pattern

Gollywog Transfer Pattern

Sock needles:

Sock Needles in Sewing Basket

Sock Needles in Sewing Basket

Embroidery and crochet thread:

Embroidery ThreadsCrochet Threads

Novelty Knitting Needle Gauges. I love these as the numbers on my needles always wear off:

Novelty Knitting Needle Gauges

Novelty Knitting Needle Gauges

This cute pin tin looks like it dates from the Art Nouveau period:

Pin Tin

Pin Tin

And; a crazy patchwork tea cosy!

Crazy Patchwork Tea Cosy

Crazy Patchwork Tea Cosy

Now I just need to start finding a use for all of this!

Stylish and Warm – Vintage Knits from Wolsey

I am not a fan of moving house. I don’t like the disruption of packing, or the sense of dislocation that comes from not knowing where you have put that vital something that you absolutely have to have this instant. As well as the normal chaos of a new place, I had to leave things in storage until I found a more permanent place, so not only can I not find things in my new home, I’m not even sure if they’re here, or still in a container in Cornwall!

Fortunately, it looks as if phase 2 of the move will be happening shortly and I can look forward to another spell of unpacking.

Of course, one of the nicer things about unpacking is that you never quite know what forgotten things you are going to come across.

I recently found this pretty little advertising booklet in the bottom of a box I’ve had packed for ages.

Wolsey Brochure Cover

Wolsey Brochure Cover

I’m a keen knitter and I’m currently working on a vintage jumper, made with vintage wool to a vintage pattern. More of this in a later post, but until I have something in 3D to show you, have a look at what you could have bought to keep you both fashionable and warm back in the day:

Eden Roc Twopiece

Eden Roc Twopiece

A lovely outfit if you’re tall and slim. I would love to know what the ‘hopsack tricot’ used to make the skirt is – I feel the need for more research.

Paris Plage

Paris Plage

 

Completely impractical for today’s golf course, I am assuming from the title of this outfit that this is a dress for crazy golf and not the full 18 holes!

 

Rubberneck

Rubberneck

A rather unfortunate name for this outfit, but a great hat, and I love the names of the colours for this model. So evocative.

St Tropez

St Tropez

You could quite easily wear this jumper today, it’s refreshingly spring like and would look just as good with jeans as it does with this pencil skirt.

Newmarket

Newmarket

I’m intrigued by this description – how would you use quilting on a knitted suit?

California

California

I love this outfit, and I’d be quite happy to wear it to the office!

Cote d'Or

Cote d’Or

‘Lacy sweaters and cardigans, in down soft wool and angora’ doesn’t it make you want to snuggle up?

Sunningdale

Sunningdale

I love the idea of unshrinkable wool – I certainly haven’t got the knack of that yet.

Longchamps

Longchamps

With today’s fashion for blocks of colour, this outfit would fit right in on the catwalk, particularly with the Chanel-look jacket.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A Busy Week

It’s been a busy week, with 5 auctions over 6 days. While I take a little time to sort through what I have bought, here’s a few things that caught my eye in the sale rooms:

This lovely cream enamel Belling cooker has a lovely vintage vibe.

Belling Cooker

Belling Cooker

And it goes beautifully with this vintage fridge

Fridge

Fridge

Still on the domestic front, I remember seeing hairdryers like this in hairdressing salons, but I never knew they came in a home version.

Hairdryer

Hairdryer

Or, if you fancy something a bit smaller/more modern (still in its original box).

Boxed Hairdryer

Boxed Hairdryer

I loved the shape of this unusual cheese dish, but couldn’t work out why it was so tall in comparison to its length – pretty, but not practical, unless you’re going to stack all your cheeses on top of each other!

Cheese Dish

Cheese Dish

I’m guessing that this glass dome was also used to cover food, but it was incredibly heavy, much too inconvenient  to protect cakes, so it may be for garden use?

Heavy Glass Dome

Heavy Glass Dome

I loved the way these seventies light shades were stacked, it made them look quite sculptural!

Lampshades

Lampshades

I loved this pair of pictures, just right for down here in Cornwall.

Seaside Girl

Seaside Girl

In fact, it may well have been modelled down here, the landscape (seascape?) definately has a Cornish feeling to it.

Seaside Boy

Seaside Boy

Apologies for the pictures by the way, I only had my camera phone with me.

Always Look in the Bottom of the Box!

I was at a nondescript auction house in Cornwall a little while ago. It’s not exactly a high-end place, in fact it sells such low-end stuff I only popped in because it was on my way to lunch. But I poked around in the boxes as any good auction hound should, and under some rather tasteless ‘Cornish treasure maps’ in a very damp box I found some rolls of old looking paper. I carefully unrolled a corner and I could see what looked like some hand printed designs.

I left a low bid, which was successful and carefully took them home where I had to give them time to air – the smell of damp paper was not nice.

Once they’d stopped smelling, and having thrown away the treasure maps, I unrolled the real treasure….

Block Printed Picture

Block Printed Landscape

The bottom of the box was full of block printed paper.

Border Print

Border Print

These prints were made by dipping a series of carved wooden blocks into paint/ink and then applying them on top of each other. This would have taken a lot of skill and a very steady hand, and was the way the first printed wall papers were made.

Floral Prints

Floral Prints

Some of them had an impressed stamp saying ‘Stampi Remondiniani PESP’, and one had an inked stamp saying ‘Importe d’ Italie’, so I worked out that I wasn’t dealing with British papers:

Italian Export Stamp

Italian Export Stamp

I was fascinated, so I contacted the Wallpaper Historical Society who passed my query on to the marvellously helpful Robert Weston of Hamilton Weston Wallpapers.

Floral Border

Floral Borders

He told me that these were not, in fact, wallpaper samples as I had thought. They are decorative papers that were used to line boxes, or for borders.

Panel Design

Panel Design

The impressed stamp is the mark of Remondini, who were a family printing firm, from 1730 to 1860 based in Bassano del Grappa, N. of Venice.
They exported world wide, which could explain how the papers made it to the UK. The Remondini company was  bought out byanother company called Rizzi who continued using the blocks into 1930s. So my little bits of paper could date from anywhere between 1730 and 1930!

Border Print

Border Print

Unfortunately, some of the papers had been damaged/used:

Part Used Paper

Part Used Paper

I am now trying to find out more before deciding what to do with this collection. But what a fascinating journey they’ve been on, from Italy to one of the poorest areas of Cornwall. And truly a lesson to always look in the bottom of the box……you never know what might be hidden there!

Floral Pattern

Floral Pattern