The Washerwoman

Sunday 25 January 2009

Holiday time!

Just remembered that I bought this 1950's china just before my holiday. I had to have them to add to my collection of wacky vintage china. Each little skiing figure appears to be handpainted.
The mark on the bottom says "Broadhurst, England. Alpine". I bought them at the Exeter Flea market which is a new event & well worth a visit. The next one is on March 14th.

So, what is this all about then?

Here they are, let me introduce you to the annual "torture boots"..... We just got home from a lovely holiday in Austria, but on that first day in the basement boot room you really do wonder why on earth you are cramming your poor feet into these glamorous things....... and then to attach them to long pieces of fibre glass in order to hurtle down icy slopes at ridiculous speed..... why?

it has to be worth it for the view from the top.......

..or stopping at a charming mountain restaurant for a delicious cup of hot chocolate......( isn't that a wonderful shade of green on those shutters).

.. in order to ski further to enjoy more views......these trees were absolutely amazing....

Then back at the hotel one can admire the fantastic old painted furniture (how I would have liked to have smuggled this one home!)

Another fab view on another day. I do have dozens more piccies from the holiday, but I won't bore you all too much. We met some really lovely people, and some not so great ones (throwing furniture out of your hotel room at midnight is NOT the way to behave on holiday) ... there was also a ski instructor with an attitude problem. I endured 3 days of ski school with him, then played hooky for the rest of the week!
It is good to get away, but coming home is wonderful.... apart from the amount of washing that you have to face!

Thursday 8 January 2009

Reasons to be cheerful..part one!

In the words of the late, great Ian Dury.. Reasons to be cheerful...... a new pair of Doctor Marten boots! Well. he didn't exactly sing that but I am sure he would have approved!
I went in search of a "sensible pair of plain black boots that I could wear with anything" and came back with a fabulous funky shiny purple pair of DM's that I will have difficultly matching up with a single thing in my wardrobe!
How does that happen? Funnily enough, it often happens to me if I attempt to go anywhere near the shops.....
One of the main problems with the more conservative trendy designs was the embarrassing fact that most of them were too tight around the calf area. I know I don't have the skinniest legs in the world, but I know for a fact that this isn't the undernourished 1970's any more and people are just a bit bigger than they used to be. (so why make the boots so darn skinny?)
Anyway, here they are in all their purple glory, along with the fabulous bag they came in as a background & the butterfly laundry bag that I also could not resist as it was only £1.99.
I did want to add the Youtube clip of Alexie Sayle singing the Dr Marten Boots song, but having a few technical problems as per usual, so here is the link if there are any Young Ones fans out there!

Tuesday 6 January 2009

Having a bad day? Try mine!

Back in August when I started this blog I promised "rural ramblings" - well, you almost got a rural rant at 4.30 this morning! The weathermen predicted "severe weather" and temperatures as low as minus 10. However they forgot to mention the Chance of the old handbrake freezing up.
Yes, imagine the scene in the pitch black at 4 am as we are trying to attempt to drive halfway across Southern England to the Ardingly showground in East Sussex.... there was me crouched on the floor with a hairdryer in hand trying to defrost the back wheels of the trusty Peugeot 807.
After 40 minutes with heater and hairdryer, we were on our way..... only to reach the motorway which was closed! Next thing we know we are driving in totally the wrong direction asking ourselves if somebody somewhere was trying to tell us something....
We then made the awful decision to turn back and head for home. As anyone knows who has ever been in the Antiques trade, it is a real tough one as the stall is pre-paid and after weeks of inertia due to the Christmas "holidays" (as it now seems to be known as in this country).... we really needed to be out there selling today.
So, have just finished unpacking the car and stomping around the house and think a calming trip to the local pub might be in order?

PS I meant to add that the photo was taken at 10 am this morning when we had to go through the whole sketch again as the handbrake froze again..... and we needed to go out to collect the cats from their luxury "hotel" (aka the cattery) where they were booked in for 2 nights as we usually do 2 days at the Ardingly fair!

Monday 5 January 2009

Funky 50's dress fabric designs

Recently some really interesting dresses have come my way. They all have a common theme, but I know very little about the makers. The above print has a definite "map and compass" theme. There is no makers label, and it appears to have been made by hand.

Another hand made item is this wonderful skirt depicting a wild night at the theatre, don't you just love the way the figure in the background is leaping through the air!

This demure dress has a fabulous street market scene going around the lower part of the skirt. The label on this garment reads "Vicky Johnson, London".

and last, but not least - my favourite with the Ballerina design. There is a very positive influence of the artist Edgar Degas in this print.
The label reads "Karin Lee by Hellas". You can just see one of the characters in "Mad Men" wearing this one! (Do check out Mad Men on Youtube if you like your TV viewing to be set in the 1950's and distinctly off-beat).
We got Season one on DVD for Christmas and have been glued to it most evenings...