Tuesday 20 July 2010

Wonder Whistle, vintage and antiques extravaganza, KT10

A sunny Sunday in London is always a treat. But this one had even more of a treat in store as I headed over to beautiful Esher where the Wonder Whistle vintage and antiques show was taking place at Sandown Park Racecourse.
This family run (with a family-close feel) antiques and vintage fair is held around ten times and year on Tuesday and Sundays. It boasts up to 300 specialist dealers bringing an amazingly wide range of their expert products, running from really affordable prices. The stall holders offer a huge selection of types and eras of vintage/antiques including silver, clothes, crockery, furniture, collectables, toys, textiles and jewellery (hint to boys...if you ever want to find one-off jewellery some pieces here would make a girl very happy).

So this fab fair really got me. I rolled up 1pm for a leisurely stroll around the stalls inside and outside the rather marvellous racecourse venue. The mixture of unique pieces on sale made it a happily distracted stroll as the friendly informative dealers didn't mind sharing the stories behind their fantastic finds. Like this real Welsh Guard's uniform! Straight from the front room of a real Welsh Guard. Not something you see every day at the races!
As the stalls offer vintage pieces as well as antiques there is a huge selection for any vintage lover. In particular with the vintage jewellery, clothes and accessories like...fabulous square toed 1940s heels still ready to wear, super cool 1950s kids' sunglasses and (my favourite) this amazing authentic bakelite necklace, as the dealer pointed out - look at the detail of the black framing the birds! A proper snip at £65

But my heart lay (surprise!) between interiors pieces. The Flour storage tin had me with its lovely old-school font, but I think I'll have to commit a little further to my baking before I can invest. I also spied a complete and perfect set of Thomas crockery including sugar bowl and dainty coffee cups(just £35...can't think why I didn't buy it now!)...but this elegant French style tin jug and bowl set in white with a simple gold stripe made it home with me in the end. It makes me want to wake up early, wash my face with cold water and find some moors to trek across...but that might just be me...
Wonder Whistle is a definite must visit for anyone who likes anything from accessible unique vintage pieces up to rare and specialist antiques. The next show takes place on Sunday 12th September and you may have to fight me off if any bakelite necklaces turn up again...

Monday 19 July 2010

En route...

Vintage interiors treats en route from lovely Esher...think they should make it by tomorrow...

Tuesday 13 July 2010

Timorous Beasties, EC1

Oh how I love Timorous Beasties - clever, witty fabrics and wallpapers subverting traditional patterns to create very cool contemporary alternatives. I've admired their toiles for a while, as they look traditional from afar, yet up close you don't see idyllic pastoral scenes but those of modern life...

So I was delighted to stumble upon the London showroom on Amhurst Street, EC1 where I spotted the very apt London Toile which includes scenes of the Gherkin (one of current fave London buildings), loitering teenagers and erm gun crime. Brilliant.
Also I loved this D├ęcouper 3 in a house fulla bikes I reckon I could sneak in some extra ones in my curtains pretty easily.

As including these prints in your home decoration would be a big commitment (but I would love to see how long the family would take to notice the person sparking up a fag in my wallpaper...) it was great to see that mugs, postcards etc were on sale for the less daring of us.

But I'd still love to have the guts for the London Toile in full, perhaps as the most lovely way to remember the scummier parts of 21st century London...

Saturday 10 July 2010

twentytwentyone warehouse SALE

My love of interiors won over my love of the sun today as I gleefully visited the twentytwentyone sale on the hottest day of the year. The warehouse sale was on for one day only, so it really couldn't be missed...whatever the weather.

The super stylish contemporary 20th/21st century (see what they did there?) furniture retailer has been on my radar for a while. In a way that allows me to browse hopefully at the cool but pricey collection of modern designs by Moooi, Established & Sons, Ercol etc. Plus a carefully chosen selection of 20th century designs (be still my beating heart!)

So I couldn't miss out on the up to 70% sale of ex-display furniture and accessories from the Upper Street showroom. Fresh (ha!) from the tube and clutching a bottle of water I made it later than I had hoped and I think I missed some of the best bargains, but loved the sale all the same.

I enjoyed having a chance to admire the bigger pieces ex from the showroom mainly furniture and lighting. I took a particular shine to this Established & Sons Convex mirror. Such a lovely slimline shape that uses its car wing mirror shape to give a really wide view of the room. Definitely the coolest thing I had seen all day.

Sunday 4 July 2010

Summer stars

As spied near Primrose Hill...a subtle vintage hint in a cluster of cool colours. You can't go wrong with that.

Saturday 3 July 2010

Urban Outfitters - I forgive you (sorta)

So you'd think I'd be crazy for the homewares too right? Erm no. Sorry Urban Outfitters I just don't get it. The choices of youthful floral and slogan based products aren't really my bag I'm afraid. It seems a bit fussy and busy next to the cool simplicity of their clothes.

They seem to be pretty keen on pastries too. Now don't get me wrong I like cakes as much as the next girl (see most of my other posts) but I can't see why I would want to decorate my home with wouldn't be able to eat them for a start...
However before admitting that this could mean I am too old for the store itself (god forbid) I found the collection of decorative letters in the Oxford Street store.

Urban Outfitters I forgive you, I couldn't resist these text book tall letters, especially this deconstructed-style pair. I'm back to my UO crush and still totally young enough to get away with their clothes. Alright?

Seaside style: Strike up the band

My Brighton jaunt introduced me to an updated classic with the freshly re-furbed Brighton Bandstand. Close by the eerie remains of the West Pier the bandstand was brought back to its former glory last year.

The elegant Grade II listed bandstand now houses a sophisticated tea room (run by Brighton stalwarts La Fourchette). Definitely worth a look at the tempting pastries and simple stripped down interior. I was particularly taken with the industrial utilitarian lighting and of course the cakes.