What a Carry On!

Who hasn’t heard of the classic British comedy Carry On series? When discussions of the NHS lead to calls of “Bring Back Matron”, who doesn’t have formidable but kindly Hattie Jaques in mind? Apparently, even Andy Warhol collaborator Paul Morrissey was a big fan of the whole Carry On genre!

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Woo Gilchrist
Eccentric Art

Curtis Jeré artisan house and its awesome sculptural works have become synonymous with Mid-century design and contemporary modernist settings. Though the name Curtis Jeré is familiar to many as the maker of eccentric modern design from the 1960s and 70s, relatively few are aware that it is a pseudonym for the design team of Curtis Freiler and Jerry Fels – who were brothers-in-law.

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Woo Gilchrist
Light Fantastic

We’re in the throws of pulling our February/March 2019 issue together, and thought it would be fun to remind you of some of the great articles we brought you this time last year. This article about Hans Agne Jakobsson appeared in our Feb/Mar 2018 issue (now sold out).

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Woo Gilchrist
Symbol Treasures

With the festive season fast approaching, many of us are readying ourselves to tackle the challenge of giving the perfect gift. In an age where sustainability and counting your blessings is important, we’ll most likely be on the hunt for something built to last and that will inevitably be cherished. A symbolic piece of antique or vintage jewellery could be the perfect solution to this present buying dilemma.

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Woo Gilchrist
Stroke Me, Touch Me, Feel Me...

As well as the wonderful furniture and jewellery that we feature, there are also lots of great designs in vintage fabrics and I'm one member of the VE team that knows all about this, having being a fabric addict since I was a small girl. Let me tell you why I love fabric so much...

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Masters of Tinplate

When do you think tinplate toys began? In the 1920s, perhaps the 1930s? Try the 1880s. I was surprised too. Toys up till then had been mostly made the way Geppetto made Pinocchio, by hand carving wood; so cheap toys were often simplistic and crude. Even when metal was used, as in lead toy soldiers, the decorating process made manufacturing extremely labour-intensive. And even after tin toys first appeared, they too were painstakingly hand-painted, pushing up prices.

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Shoulder to Shoulder

Considering how short a time the Suffragettes’ campaigned for Votes for Women, it is amazing how much memorabilia there is on the antiques market. Not only items produced by the movement itself, but commercially produced items showing support, showing contempt or – as with some of the German toys produced during this period – a sense of the amused observer.

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My Moonbase Alpha

Live your dreams, they say, and Catherine Bujold is certainly living hers. Welcome to the future! When it comes to design, some sci-fi fans draw the line at a Tardis moneybox and Star Trek pyjamas. But not Catherine Bujold. French- Canadian Catherine has transformed her home into her own Moonbase Alpha in hommage to classic 1970s TV show Space: 1999. And it’s not geeky in the slightest – it’s fabulous!

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Edna Martin - Swedish Textile Designer

As the VE Team textile officiando, I thought I would write a bit about one of my very favourite designers, who you may not have heard of.

Let me introduce you to Edna Martin (1908-2003) . Martin was one of the leading designers and a dedicated reformer of Swedish textile arts in the mid-twentieth century. She was also Director of Svensk Hemslöjd between 1945 and 1951, Artistic Director of Handarbetes Vänner from 1951 to 1977 and senior professor of art at the Royal College of Art from 1957 to 1969.

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Woo Gilchrist
The Krampus...

As you no doubt have guessed, we here at VE love the darker side of things.  We are drawn to the quirky and downright weird in fact.  We've been fascinated by the (mostly) northern European tradition of the 'Krampus' for some years now, and it seems to have been getting more popular now with some Krampus 'runs' being held in the UK.

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Woo Gilchrist
Marmite Musings

There are a few categories of collecting that will always have a love it or hate it reaction and taxidermy is one of them. Even the VE office is divided, but I’ll not let on who’s for it or who’s against it here.

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Alan Ashby