Which vase do you prefer?
First, an antique Chinese vase from around the 1860s, made in the blue and white porcelain kangxi style.
And secondly, a very retro 'Rainbow' vase made by Hornsea Pottery of Yorkshire in the Sixties.
They've come along way to be together, nearly 100 years and 5000 miles, but you can now find them both on our Cambridge market stall.
Which vase do you prefer?
Retrovert's growing 'Indian Tree' pattern collection is making its debut at the market tomorrow.
The design was used by many different potteries and china companies. What I find the most intriguing about Indian Tree items is the subtle variations in shape and colour which create a diverse range of vintage items.
Here are the items in all their glory.
Here at Retrovert we love grouping our vintage finds into themed collections.
Roses - from the classical red to the unattainable blue, are a beautiful feature in so many vintage designs. They won't wilt away like cut flowers and can be appreciated for many years to come.
These are a few of our favourites:
Jane really got into the Valentine's spirit yesterday, decorating our stall with these cutesy messages of love.
If you want to eschew the commercial and the conventional, but still want to show your loved one you care, come along to Retrovert (or nudge your partner in our direction) for a cutsie, quirky or even eccentric gift, which says 'I Love You'.
We'll even tie up your vintage gift in a big red bow for free.
On Sunday we made it to our first Judy's Affordable Vintage Fair on our bicycles through the deep snow. Getting there was a bit of an adventure. Here's how it went:
Jane - Pulling an over-laden trailer to Judy's through six inches of snow felt like one of the craziest things I've ever done. I'm certain one passerby, who asked after my well-being, thought I was homeless, pulling all my worldly goods behind me! Was greatly relieved Sophie didn't have time to photograph my arrival at the Guildhall, looking, even more than usual, like a frazzled bag lady!
Sophie - After it took three of us to push the bike and trailer up our driveway, we realised that there was no way we could get anywhere unless we cycled right down the middle of the road. My Dad, undaunted, volunteered for the task of taking the heavy load and the journey was surprisingly without incident. We got there, 15 minutes early in fact, to discover that the fair might not even be going ahead! Cue feelings of comical ambivalence mixed with a hint of despair and then much relief when they decided to go ahead and all our efforts were worthwhile. Thanks to the valiant Sam it was a great day in spite of the weather.
Can you believe we managed to get all this on just our bikes?
We were setting up right until the last minute, hurriedly unwrapping items, assembling cake stands and arranging our retro delights.
It was our first meeting with fellow purveyors of vintage and retro and they were lovely, lovely, lovely.
It was great to put a face to a fellow twitterer - Oh So Retro!. They had lots of great vintage clothes with them on the day and they do retro homewares and furniture too. We were sandwiched between gorgeous vintage jewelry on offer from stylist Galina Sherri along with lots of other great vintage clothing delights and Anya (we think), another friendly vintage trader from Cambridge who bought our cute squirrel vase and was our first sale of the day. They both took us newbies under their wings.
Visitors to the fair were charming and showed impeccable taste. Take a look at some of the cute characters and eclectic objets we waved a teary goodbye to on Sunday.
We were still there carefully wrapping up our remaining china long after the vintage clothes sellers had gone. What a luxury it would be to fold everything, put it in a bag and go. Never mind, we wouldn't have it any other way as we just love our retro homewares! Hope to see you again at the Guildhall when Judy's returns to Cambridge in May for more great vintage bargains.
Don't you just love shopping for vintage...
I bought a Colclough Ivy sideplate in Oxford, and then two days later I came across a large cake plate at a car boot. Never before have my eyes lit up so much when I realised it matched the plate I had already got and together they would make a beautiful two tier cake stand! Talk about cheap thrills, I am far too easily pleased...
Have you ever matched up vintage items from different places?
We recently acquired this Royal Worcester coffee can from one of our regulars at Cambridge market. He found it was a duplicate in his collection - not surprising when you have 583 and counting!
The delicate cup and saucer are decorated with a variety of geometric and floral patterns in navy blue and have elegant gold rims. The fine bone china is so light and transparent that you can even see the pattern from the inside.
I wanted to find out more about it so after some research and this helpful site I discovered the system that Royal Worcester used for dating their items. From 1891 they started using a dot sequence, adding a dot either side of the crown or beneath 'Royal Worcester England' each year. This helped me date our coffee can with 22 dots at most likely 1913, though as you can see from the photos the backstamps are somewhat ambiguous.
This means it is probably 99 years old! I scared to pick it up in case it gets broken before it gets to 100...
It is now packed in its own little chocolate box for safe transport to our stall. Come and see its exquisite form next Monday.