Thursday, 23 May 2013

Jazz and Boules at the Brocante - 11th May 2013

Another fabulous day at the Brocante in Alice Park on Saturday despite the blustery weather. We set up in beautiful sunshine and Saravian who came to sing her wonderful jazz certainly brought out the sun later.  People came to browse the fabulous array of decorative antiques, wonderful prints of vintage bathers, vintage jewellery and stunning lampshades, whilst sampling the delights of the café. Adrian Chivers and Chris Garratt had brought along their boules friends and played for a while, creating a wonderfully relaxed vibe. They were kind enough to let me have a go and I'm now hooked! 

Eirlys very kindly came to lend her quirky bunting and looked quite the picture of French chic putting it up in the morning sun.  Sarah Corbett brought a little bit of vintage beach as she moved in with her wonderful beach hut, a print of beach antics at Trouville nestling behind.  As she and Eirlys reminisced about the beach there thoughts of Jacques Tati's "Mr Hulot" came to mind.  Wouldn't it be great to be able to have an open air showing in the park me thinks.  Sarah's prints of bathers and beach scenes were wonderfully evocative, and I adored her vintage bathing doll with its swimming cap, very similar to her fabulous leather one!

As ever I met interesting customers and had lovely chats with people and was thrilled to sell my glass paintings of two twinkling belles made from sweet wrappers during the war, to one of the boules players who collects them.  Very serendipitous.

A couple of weeks later I had a wonderful morning for Mrs Baer's retiring fair at her house and the Church Hall in Church Road, Bradford on Avon.  I entered through the cellars and weaved my way through rooms of stunning and varied textiles, edgings, antique dresses, baskets of napkins, pretty linen pillow cases.  Through Mrs Baer's room lined with shelves of French linen and hemp sheets, some monogrammed in beautiful fonts, grain sacks and pretty French café curtains and others hanging.  Into Sue another cellar with Sue Stokes's stunning stall, with more treasures, vintage girdles, unusual textiles with the prettiest prints.  I bought an original French floral pinny, perfect for wearing at my job in the café at the Pound Arts Centre. 

I loved these very unusual fair ground decorations with their fibrant colours.

It is always a joy to see Jen Jones and her incredible selection of Welsh quilts and blankets.  I would definitely recommend a visit to her fascinating and beautifully set out Museum of Welsh quilts and shop, in Lampeter.


One of Joanna Heptinstall's stunning and quirky lampshades greeted us on the street outside the entrance! and there were more inside.  I love the shape and fabrics with their delicious frills.  Above the cellars was Mrs Baer's beautiful terrace edged with red rock roses.  I sat with a friend in the sun drinking coffee and looking at each others' treasures that we'd bought and admired things that the couple of ladies at the next door table had bought!  The church hall was as ever full of stunning textiles and antique clothes, and it was great to catch up with Liz van Hassault in her incredible patchwork coat.

It was an inspiring day tinged with sadness that this would be the last time that such a gathering will be happening again there under Mrs Baer's helm.  I admire her creativity, integrity and dedication to the textiles she has amassed and their history.  I salute her!

I love this little family of 1950s dolls which will definitely be coming to the next Brocante on 15th June, 2013 in Alice Park from 10am until 4pm.  There are some spaces left so if you are interested in taking space please contact Katherine Gilmore via this blog or at or on 07951 889056

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