Thursday, 13 March 2014

Another month, another trip to Malvern!

Sunday morning saw us up at 5 a.m. and on our way to the Malvern Antiques and Collectors Fair by 6 a.m.  Here is a view through the car window of the day starting over the Brecon Beacons.  I wish I had been able to stop lots and take photos as the scenery was just absolutely amazing in the sunshine.

We stopped to change drivers and I managed to get a quick photo of the Usk valley.  I only wish I have not been the designated driver, or that we were in a hurry, as I wanted to stop so many times and capture the early morning light across the mountains.  Everywhere was bathed in a soft sleepy light.

We did the outside stalls first.  I think you can safely say this was a stall set up by a Bloke who didn't have strong artistic skills . . .  Note juxtaposition of goggles and fox - he missed a real design opportunity there!

Strong manly lines in this stall too, but at least you could see what was on offer and there was a definite oriental theme.

I was drawn to this colourful plate, but told myself sternly, that I had enough plates . . .

Inside were the Antiques stalls, and this pretty - feminine! - one really caught my eye.  The pots of flowers made such a difference to it.

I was very tempted by this cheerful Staffordshire cat, and he was affordable too . . .  but I stayed my hand.  However, if he is there next time, I may have changed my mind, as he wasn't dear.

Some lovely quilts and linen on this stall.  The stall-holder said that the quilts were largely the work of two sisters, who just lived to make quilts, by hand and by machine, and just kept going.


A close-up of the hand-quilted in red quilt.  I'd have loved to have bought this (though I didn't dare enquire the price!) as it is just like a cushion-cover (also worked in red) that I made when my children were small, back in the late 1980s.  Happy memories, and such skill went into this one.

Another stunning piece, heavily embroidered on velvet, and which I would have loved to have brought home with me.  My hand is now itching to do something like this, but the garden is calling VERY loudly right now.

Three dogs wait patiently behind a stall.  Their owner said they were very good, but not averse to the odd Bonio to help pass the time!

A hugely detailed school book from Edwardian times, when children really WANTED to learn - I should think this was a gifted teenager who came from a family who could afford extended education.

Crocodile foot purse anyone?  Only £48 . . .

Isn't this gorgeous?  Ribbon work and embroidery.  I had to walk away!  It was on that beautiful stall with all the flowers that I showed earlier.

We had one last wander round outside (which REALLY paid off for my husband, as he found a very old hunting knife, very cheap!)  I had a look at this lovely vintage quilt top (unfinished, and still with the paper liners of Woman's Weekly or something inside around the edge.  I shook it out, had a good look at it.  We had a little stroll, and I went back and haggled, and it came home with me.  I'll take a picture of it on a bed and show you it properly tomorrow.

Meanwhile, the garden is calling - SHOUTING in fact!  Progress has been made . . .


  1. What lovely things! Will you finish the vintage quilt yourself?

    I can imagine the early morning hills on your way to Malvern. You must have wanted to park the car and walk all the way, over the hills!

  2. Oh BB what a fascinating place for a visit - I wanted to be there with you. I'm sure I could not have resisted that Staffordshire cat though. I love the Usk valley (we used to have friends who lived in Penpont) , I'm sure it would be magical in the early morning sunshine.

  3. Now, I also LOVE that plate. You did very well to resist! It looks a great place to wander round.

  4. I would definitely have bought the Staffordshire cat - he is gorgeous. I wonder if he'll be there next time. How much was he.....just out of interest???? x

  5. The Staffordshire cat's ears looked to be in good shape--seems like that's always the first spot for a chip or a bruise.
    I'm wondering about the size of the hexagons in your quilt top as they look larger than Kath's projects. My Amish neighbor is hand quilting a top made of hexagons in muted solid colors, with placement that mimics a trip-around-the-world quilt.
    When we walk through the Peddlers' Mall we note that some stalls are very attractively arranged, while others are such a jumble that it would be dangerous to stop and examine the wares.

  6. I did like that plate. I hope the unfinished quilt looks brilliant in your home

  7. Suzie & C/Tales - I should have asked the price of the plate - I guess around £20 - £25, so hands would have been kept in pockets!

    Em - the cat was £10, and I was VERY tempted, but we had to make our money go as far as possible. I now regret NOT buying him!

    Sharon - I measured the hexagons last night and they are 3/4" along each side, so pretty small. Your Amish neighbour's quilt will doubtless look gorgeous when all quilted up. She doesn't waste a minute of her day does she? I have to say, the house clearance blokes and their "piles of stuff" sometimes have some gems piled on the floor, so we always check them out, but that sort of table-top "display" doesn't exactly lure people in.

    Pat - it is always a good day out, and the setting - in a sort of amphitheatre with the Malvern hills as a backdrop, is a lovely one. Wish we could have walked around together - you'd have loved it and it wasn't too huge this time. One of the late summer ones we went to last year (first time we'd been) reminded me of the first time we ever went in Toys R' Us - just completely overwhelming to the senses! The Usk valley is one of the most beautiful places in Wales.

    DW - Ref. the quilt, I shall leave "as is" and see if that tempts anyone. I may just reposition a couple of the hexagons in corners to even up the sides, if the colouring suits, but because it is impossible to match the material, I probably won't finish and back it.

  8. Great purchases you resisted... Love that colorful plate. Self-control was in charge today-good for you, BB.

  9. Oh it is so hard when there is no time to stop for photography, sometimes painful!

    I was drawn to that oriental plate too and i would have told myself the same thing ;-)

    wow, that foot purse is a bit freaky to me! just odd to use someone's foot as a purse.

    no gardening here yet, still under snow.

    thank you for sharing your antique show, really a joy to see ~