Yet another brilliant day out yesterday at one of the Arthur Swallows Fairs, this time in Ripley, Yorkshire on a Moregeous road trip across the Pennines. Honestly, if you’re doing nothing today or tomorrow and fancy adding a unique twist to your home or garden, jump in the car and get over there! I was expecting to maybe find some taps, had my eye out for a spot of copper and hopefully a chandelier, but instead found myself bartering over 10m of French terracotta floor tiling, bagging a 9ft wisteria for our sensory garden at the Baths and bringing home a haul of decorative iron work for the garden! You need to be prepared to act fast and pay faster, before someone else snaps up your treasure because there is serious wheeling and dealing going on all around you….
In the market for some odds n sods or small items to add character to your home? Look no further. Timber and pottery? Tick:Pewter tankards? Tick:Original and salvaged handles, hooks and fittings? Tick:Copper? Tick:Wheely wheels good garden stuff (sorry)? Tick:And then of course there are the items which you’d never even thought of, like the clock face from a German/French village with the original bullet holes in it:Giant metal Indian firebowls in every size imaginable…Enormous copper pots and metal wellies which would actually fit Hagrid! I so wanted those but my budget dictates only getting the things we actually need for the house, which strangely enough doesn’t include oversized steel footwear.Cute cast iron garden seating with the requisite hexagon cut outs, desperately in need of paint stripper and tlc, but just so charming….Or, surely what every home needs, a Paddington Bear. Plus suitcase!There’s just so much to see and buy, it’s almost too much to take in.My 9ft wisteria is hiding in that lot, what a fantastic array of mature plants and trees from a grower over in Doncaster. I didn’t expect to be buying plants yesterday but smiled as I planted in my new lilac dwarf rhodedenron last night 🙂There was a lot of red, weirdly.And some amazing ‘big’ stuff like these huge timber corbels and original Leaf hanging seat.French frippery, if that’s your hearts desire, was available to lust over. Lots of gorgeous white crockery, kitchenalia and fabrics to die for.Who can resist spelling their own name out, especially in cute bronze letters?And some trips down memory lane, as Mr M reminisced over how much this reminded him of his aunt’s kitchen when he was young. It’s very poignant how items have the power to take us back in time and maybe that’s why we love these sort of shows so much. The treasure on sale has history, patina, years and memories almost tangibly attached to it, and can’t be compared to buying something ‘new’. Plus the traders have such passion for what they do, it’s infectious. Like I said, if you’re at a loose end this weekend get over there and get delving, or have a look at the other nationwide locations for the fairs throughout 2016. I look forward to sharing how I’ve designed in my treasure, like the tiles below, for Moregeous Mansions in the coming months!