I imagine when the designers thought this one up their thought processes went a little like this:
“Hmmm, everyone wants a dead deer’s head hanging from their wall nowadays. But what about the vegetarians? Perhaps they want to share in this experience too! And what about the people who want a barometer on their wall as well? Eureka! I’ve got it! Why not combine the two into a wall ornament which is trendy yet fully functional.”
I give you: the Plastic Deer Barometer.
We found this on Saturday in a charity shop in Glossop. I pointed at it and laughed, then the laughter turned to… hang on, that’s really kitsch, isn’t it? Do you think that would sell on Ebay? Quite possibly…
We’ve compared it to the German barometer we currently have hanging up in the kitchen, and it does appear to be working. It’s completely made of plastic, and I can’t see any manufacturer’s marks on it. It does say ‘Made in GB’ and in tiny letters M.M. Ltd. Wish me luck trying to find the maker from that!
As is always the case with us, something like this just has to be displayed for a while:
It’s replaced the wooden backed print of a girl playing a guitar for the time being. I wonder what any potential buyers will think of it! I’ll be honest, I think it’s growing on me. (Well, not literally growing on me… that would be weird). I think this has the potential to hang around for a while.
- Charity Shop Challenge (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
It’s a spectacularly rainy day here in Devon, so we decided to take a trip to Totnes. Unfortunately, the pickings were fairly slim in the town’s charity shops. However, we did find this little gem and after some deliberation (and yummy veggie food at the Willow cafe), I decided to buy it:
I got thoroughly drenched on our walk round; my own fault for being stubborn and not taking the brolly with me. It’s lovely and cosy to be back in the cottage now: laptop on, cup of tea and fire merrily flickering away behind me. Even the rain spattering outside is adding to the cosiness. The book is delightful. I’m so glad I bought it. Already, my mind is whirling with ideas of what to do with it. I think some Halloween-themed lessons will be in order next week.
The book, ‘Pleasant Fieldmouse’s Halloween Party’ was written by Jan Wahl in 1974. This edition was published in Great Britain in 1976. The gorgeous pictures are by Wallace Tripp. Other books about Pleasant Fieldmouse have been illustrated by Maurice Sendak, but I much prefer Trip’s whimsical and beautiful drawings. The sleeve jacket reads:
“When swallows fly south and pumpkins turn orange, the forest animals get ready for winter. But Pleasant Fieldmouse isn’t thinking about the cold wind – he’s planning a Halloween party! When the moonlit, spooky night arrives, there are rustling sounds… and sudden, scary noises! The mysterious capers that precede the party guarantee a night of surprises for everyone, including some uninvited guests, and especially Pleasant Fieldmouse. The lively and warm illustrations by Wallace Tripp are a perfect complement to Jan Wahl’s rambunctious and humourous- BOO!”
These are some of my favourite drawings from the book – how cute are the tiny mice in their little ghost costumes? And with the sentence, “Some end-of-year honeybees flew, timidly, as tiny, tiny bee ghosts.” you can’t fail to be captured by the writing as well.
The poor mole – moles are always portrayed as boring and miserable. I wonder why it is? I’ve got quite an affection for moles…
Unfortunately, I’m having huge problems with the internet here. Blame the rural location, horrendous weather or my own ineptitude. Either way, it’s taken two hours to get this far… so I’ll continue with pictures from the next part of the story another day.
This morning we went to view a house in Ashton-upon-Lyne. Not only did this mean the chance to look round a house, but also to visit the charity shops of Ashton and get some lunch at Lily’s Vegetarian Indian Cafe. Feeling lucky, I sent a message to Twitter and my mum to take on the Charity Shop Challenge. The theme: Kitsch. The spending limit: £3.00. Mum, Aidan and Lisa (blurat’s entry here) accepted the challenge…
Aidan’s entry consists of both the retro glass elephants and this board game:
He spent the princely sum of £2.50 on his two items, leaving him with 50p change.
My mum got these:
It’s a set of retro cocktail sticks in the shape of miniature swords! My mum’s got a good eye for the kitsch. She and my sister bought these two pictures from the charity shop yesterday:
They’re planning to do up one of the bedrooms in their house as a vintage shop for my youngest sister, using all of the retro and kitsch pictures and mirrors they’ve bought to fill a wall. Fantastic idea in my eyes! Not sure where these saucy ladies have come from, but they’re definitely a good bit of kitsch.
My entry… not as successful in the kitsch terms. We found lots – which I’ll show off in a bit – but not much of it could be classified as kitsch. I think I’ll have to bend my own rules a little and use this as my entry:
This little critter came from a car boot sale in Oldham last week, and cost a whole 50p. No idea who made it and no idea what we’ll use it for, but I like it all the same. So – readers, who’s won? Lisa’s kitsch print dress, my Mum’s miniature sword cocktail sticks, Aidan’s glass elephants or my hedgehog pot pourri holder? My money would be on my mum’s cocktail sticks…
What else have we bought today and recently? At the same car boot sale the hedgehog came from, we bought a little plastic Babycham deer (which is already sitting on my desk at work), and from the Ashton car boot sale, these plates:
We only paid £6 for these! What a bargain. They have joined the Homemaker bowls and Barker Bros. 1950s plates in the cupboard. We were going to keep one and sell the others, but we’ve accidentally kept all three…
The rest of our haul from today included:
I also got an old book of fairy tales with some gorgeous illustrations, but I’m saving that for another day. The plan tonight is to get out the retro board games with a glass of red wine. A good end to a lovely day. Just goes to show you can still find some bargains in the charity shops. I’ll get thinking about next week’s Charity Shop Challenge (possible rechristened as the Chazzer Challenge?). Don’t forget to let me know who you think wins the first one this week!
Last night we went to visit our friend John, who has finally moved into his house eighteen months after buying it! This meant that we were in Barnsley for today and, what with the glorious weather, we took the opportunity to visit the charity shops and Cawthorne Antiques Centre.
Unfortunately, the pickings were fairly slim in the charity shops. All I found were these vintage books:
The trip to Cawthorne Antiques Centre was much more successful. We always like going there; it’s got a good mixture of antiques, including a couple of rooms and stalls of the kind of ‘vintage and retro’ stuff I like. Prices are reasonable as well.
We’ve had a couple of these before and they always seem to be popular on Ebay. Never been able to find anything out about them though. Aidan spotted both the Italian vases and the Tretchikoff style head. I think I’ll keep the vases for a while.
Some of those are a bit rubbish but there are some lovely ones mixed in. Most seem to be for Christmas, so I’ll probably save them until then to blog about.
The Ridgway Homemaker design is one of my absolute favourite Mid Century prints. We actually bought two teacups and six saucers: one of the cups is chipped but I think we’ll be able to find cups to match the saucers.
Lovely day all in all. Let’s hope the gorgeous sunshine continues for tomorrow.
- Charity Shop Rummaging (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
Yesterday, I still felt pretty rotten after the Thursday-IBS-Extravaganza. I’m trying to give it a more positive sounding name, but honestly on Thursday, I felt like some kind of monster was going to burst out of my abdomen Alien-style. I’m surprised the neighbours didn’t knock on to ask what all the noise was about. Sorry, Jim, that was the sound of your mentalist IBS-suffering neighbour groaning in agony.
Friday, I felt a bit better but still very much full of headache and feeling sick so decided to stay at home again. I hate being off work. I feel guilty and that makes my stomach even worse and so the cycle begins again. At least this time it was nearer to the weekend so I’ve got today and tomorrow to sort myself out properly.
Anyway, I went for a walk around Glossop yesterday before lunch time and I honestly think that did me as much good as anything else. I don’t know if it was the good weather that did it or not, but I actually found a few bits and bobs in the charity shops:
I’m going to keep these two tops (plus another one but I’m wearing that now!) and the brooch. Vintage brooches are one of my favourite accessories, despite the ribbing I get about it from one of my work colleagues (you know who you are!). There are a couple of girls at school who occasionally wear brooches on the blazers and it breaks my heart to have to ask them to take them off.
Now, I haven’t gone mad and I haven’t completely turned into a little old lady… but just look at the covers for those books. The illustrations are great! Unfortunately, I can’t quite read the signature on the ‘Substitute Lover’ one. It looks like Lin something or other. I might ask Leif Peng over at Today’s Inspiration if he knows who drew these.
I love all of the little compartments to this bag. My first thoughts were to sell it, but it might be good to keep in my bag to keep all of my junk in. I usually just throw my phone, makeup, keys and purse into the bottom of my bag for work, so perhaps this would be a good solution.
That one will probably end up on Ebay as we’ve got more than enough pots knocking around our kitchen.
The two dresses you can see both appear to be from the ’80s, but masquerading as ’60s pieces. The dark blue one is handmade and has an almost digital feather print and a batwing top/tight skirt shape; the bright pink is a vintage Jaegar shift dress. Both are amazing: neither of them look any good on me! The blue one at least fits, but my ‘posterior’ as Aidan calls it doesn’t quite work with the dress… Just because J-Lo can work it, doesn’t mean I can, unfortunately.
Today is dedicated to work for my Masters then tomorrow we’re off to Stafford for the day to see my sister on her birthday.
- Busy Saturday (littleowlski.wordpress.com)
Yesterday was quite a busy Saturday, to say the least! We woke up at about seven, then I worked on research for my Masters until about 12.30. It was interesting actually; I’m looking at how poetry and Maths could be combined within the English classroom, and I stumbled across a few amazing blogs (what else?) that provided a huge resource of related links and articles. Anyway, you don’t want to hear about that…
There are six of them, but my picture of all six is terrible! After the not-quite-delights of Staly Vegas, we headed up to Mossley.
I like Mossley. It has a kind of ‘in the hills’, ruralish, pleasant feel about it, similar to Glossop. The Emmaus charity shop there is usually good. Downstairs, it has lots of furniture from all eras. We’re after some kind of shelving for the hundreds of pots that our tiny house now holds. We were quite keen on a 1950s unit, but on discovering that we couldn’t fit it into the car, we had to leave it behind.
Ironically, considering where we later went, we ended up buying three cheap Ikea shelving units from there for thirty quid. These have now been commandeered to house the West German Pottery in both bedrooms:
We were intending to do a charity shop hunt around Ashton as well, but by the time we’d looked around the Emmaus properly, and discovered that the ’50s unit wouldn’t fit into the car, we didn’t really have time.
I also wanted some plants and other bits and bobs for school, so we headed over to Ikea in Ashton. Ikea is Ikea. Boring, big and full of bothersome people. It is almost impossible to leave that place without a candle of some kind: but I managed it yesterday. I even had one in my hand yet I made a conscious effort to put it back down…
I’ve just bobbed them into those two WGP planters for now. They WILL be making it into school, no matter how good they look in our kitchen. Aidan says I can take some German planters to have them in, but not those two as they’re ‘too nice’. To be fair, I don’t necessarily trust the kids not to mess with them, especially the one that looks like fingers! The teeny-tiny hyacinths were a Christmas present. Unfortunately, they seem to have forgotten to grow before flowering.
Almost forgot: I bought a couple of books as well.
This picture probably shows off my eclectic tastes like no other! I love anything to do with fashion from decades past; I also have started reading Science Fiction – Philip K. Dick in particular. An odd mixture, but it keeps me happy.
Needless to say, after all of this trekking around yesterday, we needed to relax and so treated ourselves to an earlyish tea at Lily’s Vegetarian Indian Restaurant. It’s amazing! There’s a giant Asian supermarket next door, which is run by the same people. So you can eat the gorgeous food at Lily’s then go next door and by the ingredients to make it yourself. The link above is to the shop’s website; it has recipes for food in the restaurant bit so I think I’ll be making some of that this week.
A busy Saturday and a busy Sunday ahead too. Work, running, a return trip to Emmaus as I’ve discovered they have another shop in the area which is open today. Aidan’s got the projector from work at home this weekend, so we’ll be watching a film or two this evening.
- charity shop heaven (preciouseast.wordpress.com)
- Should Charity Shops Review Their Prices? (craftery.wordpress.com)
- PreFab charity shop now open! (peaceloveandpolkadots.wordpress.com)
Just seen this in a charity shop in Glossop. It’s £45. Do I buy it or not?
Easter holidays are upon us which means I have time to relax and indulge in some of my favourite past times: wandering around Glossop, searching through charity shops, reading, playing on the computer and blogging. After a lovely lunch with my friends, Rachel and Deiniol, I had a little look around the charity shops. I picked up a couple of books (including one on owls!) and this:
It needs a good old clean, but I quite like it. Aidan even likes it, which I am surprised about.
I’ve had a quick look on the internet about Arthur Wood, but there’s seems to be very little to find. The company is located in Longport, Stoke-On-Trent and has been trading since 1904. It’s been through a number of name changes over the years: more information can be found here.
Few more places to read about Arthur Wood products:
Here is my disclaimer before you see the following photos:
1) The Italian pottery found in Blackpool will not be to everybody’s taste.
2) I have mentioned previously my inability to take a decent picture of a pot.
That said: feast your eyes on these:
A little bit gaudy, a little bit over the top… what’s not to love?! How about the fact that they have undoubtedly been produced as tourist tat for one region of the continent (Italy) and have somehow ended up in the tatty, touristy town of Blackpool? How can you not appreciate that?
Ok, I know. I’m trying too hard… it’s just me that loves them. Ah well. You’ll all be laughing on the other side of your face when these are worth thousands in fifty years’ time. Probably.