Having spent days packing boxes and cutting up bubble wrap I am taking today off. Our move date is set for 8th August although my daughter and I will be flying off to the States on the 30th July ~ good timing or what? My husband and son will be left to load and unload up the van. The clearing of cupboards, drawers, sheds and garage in a house that we've lived in for thirty years plus, has brought back many fond memories and also made me realise that I seriously cannot throw anything away. I've managed to gather a large jar full of vintage buttons, a selection of old lace and sewing items, a large box of McDonalds free gifts, three boxes of 1970's toiletries, (mind you ~ some of it has gone in the bin as it was all stuck together and quite nasty to be handling!), linens, some gorgeous pillowcases still in their original tissue paper from when I bought them as a teenager and a big box of lovely crocheted and knitted blankets that my mum has done over the years! I can see that this exercise is going to take a lot longer than originally planned. I ventured into the garage and found some lovely vintage baskets and cupboards, small tables, some old metal signs ~ I always had a notion that I would have them on the back wall of the house, but somehow it never happened, at least thirty Snoopy mirrors which the children used to collect, and I really don't want to part with them, and some 1980's toys, clothes and books.
Thinking back, my earliest memories are of the smell of machine oil and the sound of my mother's old Singer industrial sewing machine purring away in the background. As a tailoress, she always had a fabulous variety of sewing related paraphernalia and many happy hours were spent playing with her buttons and beads and making dolls clothes. I can quite happily hold my mother responsible for passing on her passion for collecting all sorts of things, especially if it meant they could be reworked or revamped into something else. She was, and still is, very thrifty and loves nothing more than going to charity shops looking for bargains. She is eighty years old and still makes beautiful bobbin lace, tapestries, fine crocheted lace and exquisite hand-made flowers.
My sisters and I were taught to sew, knit, crochet and embroider from an early age and when you are younger you perhaps don't value the skills you are being given. However, over the years my passion to practice and improve on these skills has been ignited by the availability of so many fabulous vintage and shabby chic blogs and websites, flea markets and fairs, antique centres and boot sales. I love recycling and making new things out of old. I also love the thrill of the chase.
My husband knows to keep out of my way as I get withdrawal symptoms if I haven't bought anything for a while ~ really it's because I'm a grumpy old bag.