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Thursday, 5 December 2013

Arundel by Candlelight, and a look at the year with Victorian Bamboo, Marrakesh, MS and the London to Brighton cycle ride

Good Morning
Arundel Eccentrics Antiques

Arundel By Candlelight

Christmas is coming to Arundel this weekend in the form of
Arundel By Candlelight.

Its a great event.
The town will burst at the seams.....well, almost.
 There is a packed timetable for the day and  people flock into town
to be part of the festivities.

We will be sharing a stand with
French Loft Antiques
and you'll find us, no doubt shivering,
 opposite the Swan in Arundel High Street.

Here are a few snaps of last years events.....

See what I mean?

The Year 

I've been having a look back over the past few months
As we all do, I guess as the year nears its end.

Here are a few snippets...........

Town Criers  Competition

" Oyez, Oyez, Oyez"

A couple of years ago
Arundel hosted
the annual 
Town Criers Competition.

As you can see it was quite a spectacle.

Well, its back this year
on Saturday 8th June.

The parade starts at 10 am 
The Norfolk Arms Hotel 
in Arundel High Street.
It will go 
 throughout the  town
 and eventually over the cobbles 
leading to 
Arundel Castle Lower Lawns.

Entrance is free 
and the event goes on all day.

Angela ...Arundel's own town crier.

Be sure to take your camera.

We had one of our pieces featured in  Homes and Gardens Magazine

we've appeared in a few magazines over the years............

A few of our pieces have appeared in magazines...... did the bamboo items come to be in such a prestigious interiors magazine?

When this is how we found them.............
sorry state of affairs hey? may think, its just a tatty 
old table lying there in grannies shed
or down at the car boot sale.

You may think its from China, and it's pretty new.
Or maybe, that its old, but also from the orient.

Its a fascinating story and that table has 
been around a lot longer than you have.
Well....unless you happen to be about 150 years old, that is. 

The furniture was made circa 1860,
many of the factories were in London and Birmingham.
There were around 250 factories producing the pieces.

Its a great story and there are a few sites on line you can check it all out.

Gary Sharpe  now lives in 
Edmonton Canada,
though, for 20 years,
 used to be an antique dealer in the UK.

His site is full of interesting, interiors information,
and his knowledge on 
English Victorian Bamboo
is pretty extensive.
Worth checking out...ha ha, and no, he's not paying me 

Victorian Bamboo Table...with lions and leopards
this featured in Homes and Gardens magazine in September

Victorian Bamboo table....with chickens decoupage

Have a look on this link.
Wow... there is a massive list of all the factories and
loads of information.

Victorian Bamboo Table with Strawberries...English of course ha ha

We track down these sad and battered tables and bring them home.
They would probably have rattan on the table surface, or lacquer, or sometimes leather..

We clean them up, restore and sturdy them..........
and send them on their way for another 100 years or more.

Victorian Bamboo Table with Gilt and botanicals decoupage

In June I went to Marrakesh with old friends.

We had one of the best weeks I've spent for a while

The Square in Marrakesh

 Sitting in a restaurant above Jemaa el-Fnaa  square in Marrakesh 
on any afternoon you can watch the hustle and bustle
 below, while calmly relaxing with a mint tea, cold drink or simple lunch.

The drums  from Berber dancers mix with shouts 
of street vendors enticing buyers to their stalls.
 Horses clatter across the vast expanse pulling decorated 
carriages taking visitors on city tours.
 Donkeys haul carts laden with anything from building materials to eggs,
 their wheels noisily traversing the uneven surface.

Looking down you'll spot snake charmers and jugglers.
 Chained Barbary apes and fortune tellers. 
If a tourist inadvertently  takes a photograph of any of these
 they will often be chased across the square for  payment.
 Moroccan  women persuading visitors to have henna tattoos on their hands. 

Sometimes this is in rather a forceful way.
 Snatching a hand and applying henna before the victim is aware of what is happening.
Vendors on stalls sell fruit and freshly pressed juices.
Shop owners noisily tout their wares and encourage anyone walking past to go inside.
Souks on the edge of the square are, on most days bursting with both locals and tourists.
 The former confidently haggling for everyday essentials.
 The latter mostly practising their bartering skills walk away with rugs, lanterns,bags, Argan oil......

"Keep your smile and tell me your best price "
"Hello, come and see my lamps"
" Beautiful Moroccan bowls inside. I give you good price"
"Where are you from? Come and look..lovely leather handbags. My brother makes them"

Then there is the Moroccan cheeky chappie approach.
"English? Lovely jubbly. Apples n pears. Come in my shop."

Yes. Its noisy and busy. But nothing can quite prepare you for the evening.
Around five o'clock you will notice huge carts being pushed into the square.
The already busy place becomes frenetic.
Tents are erected.
Food is cooked.
 Trestle tables emerge.

By nine o'clock the square takes on a whole new persona. 
There is a cacophony of sound.
Smoke and steam rise from the pop up restaurants producing an eery atmosphere.
Thousands of people flock to the dimly lit square.
 Moroccan lamps are laid on the ground to sell and many are lit. 
Lights shine from the food vendors stalls and they all call out vying for business.

"English? Eastenders. Lovely jubbly. I am Fanny Craddock's great grandson.
Come and have food from my place. No.22"

Mostly it's all good humoured.

It's also incredibly crowded so if you visit hold onto your valuables.
Be aware you will be a target of every passing vendor.
Watch who you take photographs might find a traditional dressed character trying to edge into the frame and then demand money for being photographed.

Having said all that its a wonderful experience.

The square closes down late and the theatre and excitement  repeated  every day of the week.

London to Brighton Bike Ride.

Well, he did it.
My amazing husband.

Nass and our lovely friend Amy who rode with him....well done you guys

Firstly, he has MS.
Secondly he hasn't ridden a bike.
Thirdly, he only managed to obtain one two weeks ago.
Went up and down the road when he brought it home.

"ooo err its a bit wobbly"

Went for two 4 mile cycles.

On Sunday he rose at 4am.
His friend collected him in a van at 5.15
 and they travelled from Arundel to London.
Where Nass then proceeded to cycle around 54 miles back to Brighton.
For charity.
He raised money for The Brain Tumour Charity
and The Chestnut Tee Childrens Hospice.

I can't tell you how proud I felt as
 he came through the finishing line.
In pretty good time as well.

Botanicals on 19th century chests

I've been working on some new botanical designs
 on our 19th century chests of drawers

Using 19th century drawings of botanicals and butterflies.
They have come up.

We also now have a friend, a local artist
 painting our 19th century chests
with tartan.

stylish hey?

Have a great day

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