23 November 2010

Vintage & Handmade - Chipping Sodbury - Sunday 28 November

Just a reminder - as if you needed one - that it's the Vintage & Handmade Fair on Sunday. I shall be there, along with the usual crowd and some new ones.

Fingers crossed for better weather than was originally forecast.

See you there!


01 November 2010

The Vintage Bazaar

What a fabulous day - hoards of people and absolutely no opportunity to take any photos.

However, there are already lots on other stallholders blogs, the VB blog and on the blogs of those visiting, judging by the number of cameras I saw, so do take a look.

This is just a quick post to say thank you to Liz & Jack and Clare & Mike for organising such a brilliant day and for ensuring that we were all happy. My heartfelt thanks, too, to Tracey and Michael, Clare and Jack for helping with loading and unloading. Trying to do a Fair when you're not supposed to be lifting isn't the easiest thing, and having to rely on others who have their own stock to hump about went against the grain. But thank you all for your kindness. I really did appreciate it and know that I couldn't have done it without you.

A lovely day was had by all - and here's to the next one, scheduled for 30 April 2011.

Sue x

26 October 2010

The Vintage Bazaar - Saturday 30 October - Frome

So here we are on the run-up to my first Fair since April and what a mess I'm getting in, trying to sort out what to take, what to leave behind and trying to remember that I am not filling ALL the tables, just my own!!!

I'm hoping I'll be able to get someone to help me into the car with this

It's rather heavy as every drawer is crammed with button heaven for your delectation! I'm hoping it's a good idea to take it, but I'll make the final decision on Thursday.

I've been filling the car over the last few days with 'possibles' so that I don't do too much lifting all in one go. However, yesterday I decided I had to be sensible ... Me? Surely not! ... and emptied more or less everything out of the car under the verandah at Dairy House, and started again. So far I have one-quarter packed and ready with no need to look at it again. But as I began to be selective with the rest we were inundated with customers and when we finally shut the shop door nearly an hour after our normal Sunday closing time, it was all still in precarious piles and had to be crammed back into the car so we could go home. Guess what I'll be doing again tomorrow! So much for trying to save too much lifting. I seem to be doing twice as much!

I WILL be taking plenty of these

 and this

and a selection of

and some Welsh wool blankets (but the photo seems to have vanished), a couple of quilts and eiderdowns, and anything else I can squash in the car!

I have been playing around with the sewing machine and am hoping I'll have completed some little projects by the weekend. If so then I shall bring them to the Fair. If not, then I shall attempt to get them done in time for the V&H at the end of November. It's been fun to do, but I have so little time to play that very few ideas have actually come to fruition as yet.


We had a lovely few hours with Hannah and Florence today. Florence is growing so fast and was on fine form, giving us her usual unblinking stare, and then beaming from ear to ear. I took a couple of photos but as you know I can't post them. If you are a Facebook friend you'll be able to see them there (when I get round to transferring them from my camera!). She was wearing a new outfit today which I bought from Manda a few weeks ago. It fits her perfectly as a dress already Manda!! Hannah is having a few baby-free hours on Saturday and is hoping to come to the Vintage Bazaar.

It's official, I'm having a day of rest tomorrow! I'll rearrange the car on Wednesday and Thursday in between customers and I look forward to seeing everyone at the weekend. Let's keep our fingers crossed for a lovely sunny day!

Sue x

21 October 2010

I Don't Believe It ... and a lot of words but no pictures ...

Well, what can I say. I've just looked at the date when I last wrote anything here and am reeling with shock ...

I can't believe you're still waiting for the giveaway I promised six months ago. That really is too much to expect of anyone and I'm surprised to see that I have even managed to acquire more followers during all that time. Thank you all for hanging around. I know I must try harder and hopefully I'll be able to from now on.

In my defence I have to say that I have spent much of the last five months one degree under, below par, not the full ticket and any other phrase you can come up with. To cut a long story marginally shorter I had an unexpected overnight hospital stay 3 days after Florence was born, because of an infected cyst. Sounds gory and not very pleasant, and it was both of those. Right between my shoulder blades and daily trips to the surgery to have the incision packed and dressed for a month. At the same time we suffered a family bereavement and all sorts of other stuff which threw us. I finally got back to Dairy House duties only to have to have another op to finally sort out the problem 2 days after Florence's Christening a month ago. This time I ended up with 12 stitches. It should have been quite straightforward (according to Lizzie The Washerwomam, who knows these things) but we didn't bargain for the fact that I reacted to the stitches, steri-strips and dressings and so had 10 days antibiotics and another 3 weeks off. We finally removed what I hope was the last dressing this evening and I've been back at Dairy House just over a week. I'm not supposed to lift anything heavy but am now feeling so much better that I realise I've been doing all sorts of things today that I shouldn't. But heyho ... with a bit of luck ...

So, here we are, racing up towards the end of October and The Vintage Bazaar at the Cheese and Grain in Frome on Saturday 30th - a new Fair organised by Lizzie (above) and Clare (Daisy Darling). It will be the first Fair I've done since the Dairy House Textile Fair in April. I feel very much out of the loop and hope I don't forget to pack anything vital when I load the car.

I won't ramble on any longer but as soon as the Bazaar is done and dusted I promise I will sort out the giveaway! I'd love to post some photos of Florence, but am only allowed to do so on Facebook as access to my page is limited to friends only. I must obviously respect Hannah's wishes, but for those of you who are interested, Florence is now 5 months old, chatters away to herself, is teething, has an amazing pair of lungs when the mood takes her and according to my Mum looks just like I did as a baby. And did you know? Nearly everyone I speak to has a Granny called Florence! I must, of course, point out that the Prime Minister's Florence arrived well after ours!!

Have a lovely weekend.


16 July 2010

It's been a long, long time ....

I think apologies are in order. Have you seen the date when I last wrote a post? It's been ages, but in my defence there has been an awful lot of stuff going on. Stuff that doesn't need to be gone into, but time-consuming nonetheless.

I think I can safely say that life is beginning to take on some semblance of order once again, and I haven't forgotten that you are all so patiently waiting for the promised giveaway. If I leave it much longer you'll have given up and will have completely forgotten the reason for it.

I haven't had a chance to take any photos recently so this is just a brief words only post to let you know I'm still in the land of the living and will be taking pics of the giveaway as soon as possible.

See you soon!

26 May 2010

Spanning the Years ... and an Update ...

I've just come across this photo from 1976 - what a surprise! Hanny was 2 and I was the ripe old age of 26! And this is how we dressed for my cousin's wedding. Hannah was sporting a very fetching knitted (by me) French navy trouser suit, and clutching the soft toy of the day - a rather peculiar-looking elephant which I have a feeling may currently be lurking in a black plastic sack in our loft! My waistcoat suit was a sage green linen/manmade fibre mix - and just look at the size of that collar!

I'm having a gentle sort out of drawers and shelves and STUFF at home whilst 'convalescing' after a whistle-stop trip to hospital last Wednesday/Thursday. Nothing life threatening, but a slow and uncomfortable recovery which means I'm at home rather than tripping back and forth to Dairy House for a week or 2 ... and being overcome with tiredness every so often to the extent that I know I'm not my usual battle-on-regardless self.

Moving on to 1996/97, Rosie loved posing whenever anyone produced a camera. This was taken in our garden in Bath. If you are ever unsure about the wisdom of buying those 9cm pots of herbs available in garden centres rest assured that the sage and purple sage behind us each cost £1.49 (dread to think how much they are now) and grew to that size in just a couple of years. Brilliant value for money!

Seeing that old photo of Hannah and me makes me realise that Florence looks like Hannah from certain angles. Because of my sudden hospital dash Mum and I have only seen her once - 2 days after she was born  - but there's certainly a family resemblance. Grandpa hasn't yet had the opportunity to meet his granddaughter as he had a nasty cough last week and wasn't the full ticket.

I haven't asked permission to show you a photo (it's just feed and sleep for Hannah and Florence at the moment after what ended up as a 7-day stay in hospital, so I wait for her to do the telephoning) but I think I might be forgiven for showing you just one. This is a very proud Grandma (still not sure what I will be) and Supergran with the most beautiful addition to our line of girls. I'm led to believe that Florence has the same grit and determination as her mother, grandmother and great-grandmother before her, which should make for an interesting time for the happy parents! As soon as possible Rob will be taking a 4-generations piccie - possibly this weekend. We're hoping to see them all as it's Hannah's birthday.

Have you ever seen such a head of hair? It was very dark to start with but apparently definitely has highlights. I wonder if they will be auburn like Supergran, or blonde like her Mummy. Rob's family are both fair and dark, so it'll be interesting to see what happens. At least she doesn't have as many chins as her grandmother - lets hope she never does!!!

I haven't forgotten the promised Giveaway. It will happen, but I'm just not quite able to organise it at the moment. As always, there's joy in anticipation, and once I'm running around again like a spring chicken (dream on!) I'll get the show on the road.

In the meantime, thank you to everyone for their good wishes and a special thank you to Martin at Dairy House for stepping into the breach, organising cover and generally keeping the wheels turning while I've been incapacitated.


17 May 2010

Decisions ... Gran, Granny or Grandma ...

Not too sure what I am, but that really doesn't matter. What does matter is the fact that this afternoon, 2 weeks early, Florence Mary Sage arrived, taking everyone by surprise.

So exciting ... I think Grandpa's quite thrilled, too ... and Supergran (how many of you remember that children's programme in the 1980s?) is beside herself. We're all hoping to meet her sometime tomorrow.

26 April 2010

Blossoming April ... and other tales

Pauley and I walked to our local pub for a meal on Saturday evening. On the way I had to stop to take photos of the gorgeous blossom on one of the trees in the carpark.

The blossom on our plum tree was beautiful last week but sadly the wind has now taken most of the petals so it wasn't a suitable candidate for a photoshoot today.

As you may remember, I promised an anniversary/milestone blog giveaway as the end of March/beginning of April is always an interesting time for me. I promised I would take photographs and do the giveaway blog as my next post, but sadly I haven't had an opportunity to do so as yet.

I hope you will bear with me as I have decided, now, to wait until the end of next month and hopefully make the giveaway something worth waiting for. As many of you know we are awaiting the arrival of our first grandchild and needless to say we shall be so excited when this happens that it would be nice if we can share our excitement!

The last few weeks have been hectic, to say the least, what with getting everything ready for the Dairy House Textile & Costume Day a couple of weeks ago, taking Mum away for a couple of days to see her brother (neither of them is a spring chicken and now she lives next door to us her remaining brother and 2 sisters who live in South Northants rarely see her. To my mind it is important that I make the trip for her as often as I can when you consider that the sofa held 171 years of life on its springs last Sunday when Mum and my uncle sat side-by-side.

I have also been spending a considerable amount of time this week thinking about my long-term plans for Dairy House. I have several ideas in the pipeline, but these need to be carefully considered and not put into practice until the time is right. 

I often take photos of furniture in Dairy House but sadly they do not do their subjects justice. Because several rooms have no daylight the colours are distorted and the end results are not a good advertisement for the stock we have on display. These few are the best of those taken recently. There are several pieces of pine in DH at the moment most of which I would quite like to have in my home.

I was so pleased that the Textile Fair brought in so many prospective new customers which had been the main purpose of the exercise - apart, of course, from giving everyone the opportunity to have a jolly day meeting friends, browsing and buying!!! Initially I had hoped to hold the event twice a year, but have now decided to make it an annual event to roughly coincide with the anniversary of taking over Dairy House. The date has still to be decided, but the second Vintage Textile & Costume Day @ Dairy House will, hopefully, be held in April 2011. A number of factors brought me to this conclusion, not least the fact that it was obvious from the numbers that it would have been impossible to house the visiting stallholders inside the building if the weather had been inclement. I shall, therefore, spend some time working out the best way of creating a windbreak or other form of weatherproofing to ensure that everyone is warm and cosy regardless of the weather.

Our trip to the farm gave me the opportunity to see the young calves - sadly I missed the birth of this one by a couple of hours

Belgian Blue mothers and Limousin fathers are producing some lovely calves

Don't these look contented! .

We have 3 dealers by the name of Liz at DH - but the one I now refer to is Liz who came with me from Somerton Antiques Centre to Dairy House a few years ago. She is an upholsterer by trade and is in the process of repairing and reupholstering our double drop-end sofa. We chose a Sanderson linen which goes with absolutely nothing in the house, so it has made us take stock of what we need to do on the house.

For some reason these 3 photos don't want to centre on the page, so we'll see where they end up.

We've had very little time to do anything to the house since we moved in almost 4 years ago. Dreadful, I know, but true. Normally we would be thinking about moving house at this stage but now Mum lives next door that isn't something that we can consider. So, we need to set to and decorate, recarpet and generally make good as if we were going to sell - because then it will become a nice house to live in. All our old homes have always been at their best just as we've put them on the market!!

So, tomorrow we'll be looking at paint colours. We already know which carpet will be right, but I'm not sure when we shall get round to doing it all. After all, we shall soon have our minds filled with baby things and decorating may get pushed down the list once again!

I'm hoping the garden will get some attention this year, too. It seems to have struggled along under its own steam for the last few years with very little care and attention. I've always been a keen gardener and I hate the fact that I've had no time to spend on it over the last couple of years. I'm not complaining, but it would be nice if there were 8 days in every week rather than the statutory 7.

As well as looking at paint colours tomorrow I need to start packing for the Vintage & Handmade Fair. This Saturday, 1 May, is the date and the place is once again Chipping Sodbury. I'm just having a single table this time, with some space for a rail. It'll be lovely to see everyone again, and I'm sure we shall be inundated with customers in the usual way. This event has become such a landmark on the Vintage Fairs Calendar and will no doubt be the usual credit to its organisers, Michele and Jayne. I look forward to seeing you there.

12 April 2010

THE Event ... updated

What an amazing day! We couldn't have wished for anything better. So many lovely people helping, buying, selling, being. Thank you to everyone. What a day ;)

I'll do a proper post once I've uploaded photos and have recovered!

Please leave a comment if you have blogged the day and I'll add all the links.

In the meantime Niki has already posted with plenty of pics, and Lizzie has now posted her version of the day, too.

Isabelle's photos are now on her blog.

Ali has also posted some gorgeous photos, and written some lovely words.

Tamsyn has some gorgeous photos to show you, and Donna has made me very envious with her fabric photos!

Rather than another post here, I've posted photos and my bird's eye view of the day on the Dairy House blog. Do, please, pop over for a look-see!

09 April 2010

Vintage Textiles & Costume Day @ Dairy House - 36 hours away ...

The giveaway post will have to be after the Textiles Event I'm afraid ... run out of time ...

BUT - everything is organised for our Textiles Day and the fine day I ordered back in November/December looks as if it's going to oblige.

We'll all be ready for a 10.00 am kick-off so come and enjoy a sunny day with lots of gorgeous textiles, costume, goodies and antiques, too!  There are 10 visiting sellers and the same number of Dairy House dealers.

Camera batteries being charged as I write this!

01 April 2010

Won't be long ...

... The birthday's over, Wedding Anniversary yesterday, two-year anniversary of taking over Dairy House Antiques today, blogpost #303, Vintage Textiles & Costume @ Dairy House in 10 days' time and only 8½ weeks until I become a grandma! So ... the promised Giveaway to celebrate all of the above will be the subject of, hopefully, my next post ... just as soon as I can take the photos ... 

 In the meantime here's a mosaic of fabrics with a central corsage to keep you going

Happy 1st April ...


22 March 2010

Luckiest Girl ...

This was the scene that greeted me on Saturday morning ...

Because of this ...

Quite an unbelievable milestone reached - not too sure how that happened!

(According to one of my birthday cards I was born the year that the VW Camper Van and the Kenwood Chef  made their debuts and Andy Pandy made his tv debut; it was the year of the first British F1 Grand Prix at Silverstone; Labour won the General Election with a 5 seat overall majority; Sainsburys first self-service grocery store opened in Croydon and I share the year with Karen Carpenter, Richard Branson, Jeremy Paxman, Julie Walters, Suzi Quatro and Stevie Wonder, to name a few)

My wonderful family had organised an amazing surprise weekend, and it turned out to be exactly what I would have chosen for myself if I had had any say in the matter!

It all began with this ...
Click on the image (my dear daughter calls me Soosan these days - such disrespect!!!!)

So we set off on Friday afternoon in pouring rain! I was allowed to know I was to drive to Dorchester and from there directions were given to me by my co-pilot, although he forgot to mention one key factor and we had to phone the owners of Tincleton Lodge to find out where to go (but don't tell him I told you)!!!

Hannah and Rob were already there, the woodburner was lit, and we were sent to look round the most beautifully-appointed house with low beams which Rob had already come into contact with numerous times. Pauley and I were given the master bedroom (which you can see if you click on the link above), and despite it being a 5-bedroomed property I was amazed when, at 10.00 pm a car arrived and my bestest friend Bozena (who lives in Nice) arrived with her daughter and daughter's significant other.

Not only had BA upset Bozzy's flight plans, but they'd also had a disastrous journey from London in the rain. Apparently there had been endless secretive text messages between Han and Amanda as their arrival had been timed for 6.00 pm! We had just finished our meal when they arrived. They were, of course, supposed to have been included, but we continued sitting round the table imbibing while they ate in between all the shrieks of excitement and catching up that took place. Having not seen Bozena since Han and Rob's wedding there was much jollity, especially as neither of us has ever behaved when together in company!!!

This is the card Boz gave me! No-one else realised this is really how we see one another!

To think that we were Chairman and Secretary of Northampton High School for Girls PTA together in the 1980s beggars belief ...

After everyone else had gone to bed, Boz and I sat up until 2.30 am catching up on the nitty-gritty of "life like wot it is led" (how our girls ever grew up to be so level-headed and articulate is beyond us of course), by which time we thought it would be sensible to get a few hours' shut-eye before 'the day'!

We were all up reasonably early, greeted by more drizzly rain which continued until Sunday morning, but a breakfast of scrambled egg and smoked salmon, washed down with Bucks Fizz meant our enthusiasm wasn't dampened in the least!

I was instructed to sit down with eyes closed and after much rustling I was allowed to open them and this is what I saw ...

SIXTY red roses from Pauley, beautifully arranged with twigs and eucalyptus.

How lucky was I?

They had been prepared by Han's florist friend Jo (Flowers by Passion) and transported by Han and Rob and hidden in their bedroom overnight. Needless to say I was reduced to tears, but that soon turned to laughter (and then despair when I saw some of the photos they'd taken of me - seriously REALLY need to stop eating and I won't be showing any of the photos here!).

Sadly nearly all the photos I took of everyone were either blurred or I took them at the wrong moment where everyone was looking serious, but there are one or 2 that are 'showable'.

Only 10 weeks to go until the bump becomes a grandchild!

The day was planned to be free and easy with everyone doing what they felt like doing. Pauley stayed at the house and had a snooze, Han and Rob went to Lulworth Cove and I took Boz and Mum to Lulworth, too, via Wareham and various other places as Boz had never been. In 1980-something Pauley and I took Boz's other daughter on holiday with us to West Lulworth, so it was nice for her to see it. It continued to rain, but undaunted we walked down to the Cove and then up the hill.

There must be a suitable caption to go under this photo, but I can't think of a printable one!!

Don't you love Boz's rain hat? You can see why no-one else wanted to come with us!!
Mum spent the whole weekend grinning, despite the weather, and despite the fact that her daughter
had reached such a ripe old age!

We all reconvened in front of the woodburner later in the afternoon to watch the rugby. Everything was so relaxed that it was almost better that the weather was poor. If it had been brighter we would  have stayed out longer and not enjoyed the lovely house and each others company quite so much.

Apparently the evening meal was to be another surprise - every New Year's Eve when we all lived in Northampton, Boz and the girls would come to us, and we always had a fondue. So, to carry on tradition that's what we had. Rob wasn't impressed, not being a fondue lover, but was told the weekend wasn't about what he wanted! Hannah was determined everything was to be just so, and it was ... even to the extent that once the meal was over I was told there was one more surprise ...

Has anyone ever played the game "Farming"? This always followed on from the fondue, and Saturday night was no exception. Rules were not adhered to - were they ever? - and by 2.30 am we all agreed that we would have to stop mid-game, otherwise we'd be there all night. No photos at this stage - they would most certainly have been blurred if I'd thought to take any!

On Sunday morning we awoke to brilliant sunshine! We pottered around a little, but were all ready to vacate at the required hour full of happy memories of a wonderful weekend. I had such a lovely time and am so pleased for everyone's sake that nearly everything went according to plan.


I had some lovely gifts from friends, too! Look ...

An orchid in a felt watering can!

Very yummy choccies ...

Green bead bracelet, shiny pewter butter knife with a cow on the handle,
silver pendant, beach huts tile, button necklace, scarf, lovely lily-of-the-valley cushion ...

This beautiful handkerchief embroidered by a prisoner of war for his sweetheart ...

More gorgeous flowers

Thank you everyone for your birthday wishes - I received so many cards (I don't think blogger could cope with more photos though) and lovely blog comments. This birthday was certainly one I shall never forget! I've been so lucky and have loved every moment.

Sue x

17 March 2010

Keeping out of mischief ...

At last my little creative streak has come to the fore and I've purposely made myself stop, take time out and play a little. Playing, but not misbehaving ... first of all I've been making button necklaces. They don't take long, and I'm hoping that by the time the Vintage Textile and Costume Day @ Dairy House comes round - 3 weeks on Sunday - a button necklace will still be a suitable accessory!! Apologies for the poor light - believe it or not most of the buttons in the first photo are shades of blue!!

No problem if these are no longer the height of fashion, I'll wear them myself - I've probably now made one to coordinate with every colour of jumper in my possession!! They've been great relaxation therapy and as my latest offering looks good on my other playtime activity, I might just have to keep the necklace AND the mannequin!

I have 2 other mannequin bodies to patchwork before 11 April but believe it or not, despite having acres of fabric, choosing the right pieces isn't an easy task.

Have a lovely weekend  (I know it's only Wednesday today but I won't be posting again this week) - it's a special one for me, but I'll tell you all about that next week.


07 March 2010

Three Hundred ...

I can't quite believe this is post #300. Strictly speaking I feel this should indicate that it's time for a giveaway, but if you'll bear with me there are lots of exciting things happening over the next few weeks, culminating in the Vintage Textile and Costume Day @ Dairy House. So, sometime between now and then I'll announce a giveaway.

In the meantime, my last Shepton Giant Flea was a great success, although if you open the door to my studio you wouldn't think anything had gone! Lots of lovely bloggers and other friends stopped to say hello, and I gave out plenty of postcards advertising the Vintage Textile and Costume Day.

Since then I've had a little shopping spree in order to add to the button mountain - here are just a few with apologies for the poor lighting!

I've been selling 50-gram packs of buttons for £1. I packed them ready for the Flea and have been selling them in Dairy House since. I don't know that there's anything really exciting among them, but you never know.

You may recall that the Bridport Rag Market took place on 20 February. That was another good day, with lots of jolly company and several blogging visitors. I bought a lovely chunky cardi which needed its own button fix ... not a problem of course, and here it is with its 2"+ octagonal button.  I could have done with this thick layer all through the winter at Dairy House but at least I've  certainly managed to keep warm over the last couple of weeks!

It's been a treat driving back and forth to Dairy House since the days have been getting longer. Some days I've got home in daylight which has been great. Some evenings I've been later shutting up shop and this sight greeted me as I pulled out of the carpark one evening last week.

Yesterday morning I came across this beautifully laid hedge. So often today hedges are ripped to shreds by massive hedge cutters manoeuvred by even more massive tractors, with twigs and branches flying all over the place. I know it's done for speed and economy of time, but it was a lovely surprise to see that this dying craft is still practised in Dorset.

I do believe that Spring is now just around the corner. Although we've had some incredibly chilly days the sun and blue skies have been magnificent, trees and hedgerows are beginning to come into bud and the amaryllis I gave Mum for Christmas has come into flower.

Finally, these flowers can be found at any time of the year. A box of gorgeous floral corsages I bought on Tuesday. I think I shall keep them at home and enjoy them for a few weeks before displaying them at the Dairy House Textile Fair.

Have a good week, everyone!