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Thursday, 19 March 2015

Brighton Childhood and Artistic Aunty,Gorgeous Granddaughter, Ardingly Antique Fair, English Bamboo & other stuff

Good Morning
Arundel Eccentrics.

Hows life with you?


Our gorgeous grand daughter is adorable.
Of course, they all are hey?

She is thriving and growing into the most beautiful little girl..

Like her ma and pa who are both in the fashion world..................

.............she is becoming quite the little fashionista.

We can't wait until we get to California to see her.
Lets hope we manage that before she is 18.
Thanks goodness for FB, Email and Skype hey?


If you like reading blogs, have a look at this site.
It's packed full of blogs on every subject.

You can follow your favourites .

This is one of mine

If you love fashion you will adore this.
Street fashion in Milan and Paris, New York, London and Tokyo
to name only a'll be hooked...I'm warning you.....
Look away now if you don't have at least an hour to spend...Ha Ha

Follow us on 


We have some great pieces in the shop at the moment.

Copper and wood 19th century box.

This chair is so comfortable I've been known
 to snooze on a quiet Sunday afternoon in the shop.

Many of our latest pieces are on The Hoarde

The Hoarde

My clever aunt restores chinoiserie and has worked on
the 19th century trays and large circular snap top table below.

The flower table is all original.
Gorgeous isn't it? 

Aunty B 
is not just my aunt,
she is my oldest friend.

Well, I've known her since birth.

My Mum, 
waited 17 years for a sister.

Nan kept having sons,
albeit lovely sons,
whom Mum still adored,
but she was desperate 
for a baby sister.

By the time the sister 
came along, 
Mum was engaged 
and leaving home.

So, my aunt and I were 
nearer in age and when I
 was in my teens, 
we became the best of friends.
Oh to be 17 again!

Prior to that, 
I have snatched recollections
 of her feeding me "rainbow drops" 
(remember those?)
and teaching us kids to make toffee apples 
in our kitchen in Woodingdean, 
on the outskirts of Brighton.

Once I was grown up, 
and I use the term loosely,(ha ha) 
we were great buddies.

We saw each other 
through some catastrophic, 
but equally,
euphoric times too.

This is some of the work
 my exceedingly 
clever aunty does.

In the 1960's she trained at 
Brighton Art College
and later worked
 for my grandad, 
her father. 

Grandad was a well known 
furniture restorer in Brighton.
He loved his restoration work so much,
the family couldn't get him to retire.

He was well into his 80's before he put down the tools.

Grandad was pleased when 

I came into the business.
Said I'd sneaked in
 through the back door.

As with many things in life
 it wasn't planned.
Just seemed to evolve.

Aunty Barbara does the most beautiful
hand painted work.
Chinoiserie is one
 her of specialities, 
which I wouldn't even attempt.
chinoiserie on a 19th century bamboo table painted by Aunty B
Noah's Ark on a 19th century chest

We try to meet up on
special family anniversaries. 

We visit the cemetery in
Woodingdean and go for a long
 walk to chat and remember all those
dear to us that are no longer around.

No really,
it's never maudlin.
We laugh hysterically at 
some of the old family tales.

Shed a small tear occasionally.

Hug each other and 
vow to meet more often.

our walking companion

My visits to Brighton 
always make me feel nostalgic ...
childhood memories come flooding back.

When I was 13,
 I was in love 
with a 17 year old mod
who lived up the road.

I used to stand 
on the toilet seat and gaze misty eyed
 out the of the bathroom window.

I'd watch him drive up
 and down the 
road on his silver lambretta.


Oh! the ecstasy as I jumped off the school bus
 one bitter winters afternoon.

I was in my Convent Girl
 school uniform.

The gorgeous Pete 
drove up on his lambretta, 
wearing his parka.

"Can I borrow your scarf, its freezing on here?"

Oh joy...I could barely contain myself.

Remember being 13?

Just as the scarf was in place,
wound neatly around his gorgeous neck...... mother's dulcet tones
bellowed across the street.

"Get that scarf off yer greasy neck Smithy"

Oh the mortification of it !

 I blushed, he blushed.

He roared off on his scooter.
 I stood in the middle of the road
 gazing misty eyed after him.

Unrequited teenage lurve.

ha ha.

I wonder what became of him?

English Victorian Bamboo

We source 19th century English bamboo,
and restore and decorate it.

If we can we leave in the original state,we do.
All too often  the rattan on
the little table, or bookcase, is too far gone.

Well, when you consider they
were made in England in around
That's a long time to stay in one piece hey?

We clean and polish the bamboo.
Remove the ripped rattan and re-board the surfaces.
Then paint and decorate with decoupage.

All the images we use are 19th century.

So....we take a piece like this

..................and turn them into this.

It's a lot of work,
but we love what we do
 and are passionate about
putting a good finish on every item.

Many of the factories where the pieces were made
 were in London and Birmingham.

Have a look at this site
it gives a huge list of all the places
19th century bamboo was made

They've done well to last this long.

Sometimes we leather them for a simpler look

Hopefully we have sent them on 

their way to last another 100 years.


We also source old galvanised items,
buckets, bowls, boxes, in fact
anything that is old and will stand still

and we paint and decorate them.......

we use all sorts of 19th century images.....

by the way...

look out for the April edition of 
House and Garden magazine.....
We decorated a chest of drawers especially for them.....

This was the chest we started with.......


you'll have to wait to see the finished piece,
it's under wraps until April.

Completely different to our usual look......

Ardingly Antique Fair.

The next Ardingly Antique Fair
 is on soon
Tuesday 21st to Wednesday 22nd April 2015
South of England Showground, Ardingly,
 Nr Haywards Heath, West Sussex, SAT NAV - RH17 6TL

If you get on the fairs website 
you can download a pdf
 of the entire years dates.

If you've never been............
It's well worth going on the first day.

It's called "Dealers day",
but you don't have to be a dealer to gain entry.
You just need £20.
Its cheaper second day, (but the £20 you pay on the first will give you a ticket for both days.)

I love the first day.
It's buzzy.
Everyone is full of anticipation.
Buyers and sellers alike.

By the second day some sellers have already left.
Many of the best pieces have sold.

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