The lovely actress Alison Steadman is on Lorraine at the moment.
Did I ever tell you how she visited us in our warehouse?
We were filmed for Celebrity Road Trip.
It was a few years ago now.
Alison was great fun.
It was a wonderful experience for us.
Hidden away from the main streets.
Brought us to more peoples attention.
Been a busy few weeks for us.
Took delivery of some beautiful French decorative pieces
Had a write up in Antiques Trade Gazette
Shop talk: Arundel Eccentrics
In our series looking through the keyhole of ‘bricks and mortar’ shops, ATG talks to Brenda Nassarian of English and French decorative interiors business Arundel Eccentrics. When and why did you open the shop?
Brenda Nassarian, right, of English and French decorative interiors business Arundel Eccentrics, pictured with husband and business partner Mahmoud Nassarian.
The space is a warehouse hidden down an alley in Arundel, West Sussex. It is the last remaining building of the 19th century Swallow Brewery, which we chose for its size and price. I started there 20 years ago while my husband Nass was working for a top antique dealer.
For a while I left the warehouse and moved around the antique centres in the town and then set up a showroom and workshop in an old barn on a farm outside Arundel. Then 10 years ago Nass and I joined forces. The warehouse was still empty, so we returned.
How do you divide responsibilities?
Nass works at the shop with extra help from friends when required. I cover the occasional day but mostly work on decorating furniture in the riverside studio we have in our Arundel home – I specialise in decoupage on Victorian furniture and on vintage boxes and bowls. I also work online, updating websites, organising deliveries and emailing customers.
How is the shop designed?
It’s down to Nass who arranges head-turning displays. He likes to encourage customers to meander round the warehouse in order to fully see everything.
What’s the atmosphere in Arundel like and how has it changed over the years?
We have US trade customers who have visited for many years, but the area is fast becoming a destination for the UK-based antiques trade and interior designers. The back of the Co-op isn’t the most salubrious place in Arundel, but in general the town has a buzzy, friendly atmosphere.
Out of sight, out of mind: because it’s an old warehouse there are no windows. The council won’t allow signs. No signs. No windows. Long term, the biggest challenge is the possible redevelopment of the site.
What events do you host?
Open evenings, to remind folks we are here. These are fun and good for business. Arundel people like to support – they also like to party.
The Old Brewery Antiques Warehouses, 2A Fitzalan Road, Arundel, West Sussex, BN18 9JS
Our cocker spaniel puppy Elsa keeps us busy
finding new walks and revisiting ones from years ago.
She keeps us constantly amused by her antics.
This week Elsa had her first taste of snow.
|look at that face|
We met up with her mother and brother to walk up at Whiteways.
It's a fabulous walk through miles of forest.
Open 7 days a week from 07.30.
As well as using it if you are walking it's a good place to stop off if you are travelling on the A29.
Large car park.
Outside tables and benches.
Been working hard on English Victorian bamboo.
We have a studio down by the river in our Arundel home.
We restore and paint then decorate with decoupage.
All our latest pieces can be found on The Hoarde.
and I've been working on a chest of drawers I'm decorating for a customer.
They wanted gilt with butterflies decoupage.
It's a long job.
But worth it.
When I run workshops I always tell students to take a before photo.
Should follow my own advice, as this has been transformed.
We had a great write up in Reclaim magazine this month.
The journalist really did his homework before coming to the town.
Here's the piece on Antiques in Arundel
Our friend Amy came over on Monday.
To socialise and have a walk.
With her dog Clint the daschund.
And yes, he was named after Mr Eastwood.
You can get a map at Arundel museum for Arundel walks.
It was bitterly cold and trying to snow.
But we had a fabulous walk.
Through the woods and over the hills.
We parked outside Slindon College and took the path towards Bignor.
Last time we walked we
were talking about nut roast.
were talking about nut roast.
Who knows why.
How it was very much a veggie staple years ago.
Not so now.
But I still love it.
I was vegetarian chef at West Dean College years ago
and it was a real favourite with the students.
(West Dean is an extremely upmarket college for mature students.)
Amy was saying about some of the fiddly recipes there are.
And how loads of them have cheese in.
By the time I got home, I could think of nothing
else to go with the roast Nass would be cooking later.
He's very much a carnivore so had his meat sorted.
I pulled out some of my old books.
I still occasionally use Cranks and Rose Elliott books.
Make me feel nostalgic.
I wanted to make the nut roast quick.
Whatever I could get at the local Co-op.
Minimum dirty pots.
And it had to be tasty.
So the books went back on the shelf to gather even more dust.....
and I made it up as I went along.
In the magimix, I threw an onion and two carrots cut up roughly.
Whizzed it up a bit.
100g bag walnuts.
100g bag almonds
100g bag unsalted cashews.
Wizzed some more
400g tin of tomatoes (as I had no stock)
2 free range eggs
about 80-100g wholemeal bread.
with a small handful of fresh rosemary from the garden
I love sage but only had dried
handful of that.
Put it into a loaf tin
baked it 200 for about 20 minutes
Took it out, covered it with foil.
Put back for about 25 minutes.
Let it stand for a few minutes and turned it out.
oooh that roast was gorgeous and the nut roast with cranberry sauce
I cut it into slices when it was cold
and put in the freezer ready to pull out individual portions.
Have a great day.