I am an antique textile dealer and also make things from a variety of my textiles,usually things that are distressed and can be recycled to extend their life and enjoy their beauty or workmanship.
I buy antique quilts exstensively ,log cabin pattern is my favourite. "Paisley" shawls are another passion of mine,even the damaged ones find a good home with me! love the colours, so rich.
I have a soft spot for anything in wool, must be my Northern roots and upbringing,Blankets, sweaters, tweeds and felts , the more rustic the better.
Lizzy and I share a love of French linen and textiles and have a joint collection , " Franglais " which we source together on our travels, bedlinens , soft furnishings , sheets for curtains , the more rustic the better we like them Handwoven linens and hemps from the 19th cent. wonderful shirts and chemises.
Barnes Fair on the Green an annual event each July which my friend Sandra and I have been doing for more years than we can remember, always heaving with people all day and many return customers have become regulars and friends.
We have always arrived early as it is a really tight squeeze and you need to get your tent up quickly to mark your pitch and get two loaded Volvo estates emptied and down to the car park before the masses decend.
This year must be the wettest ever , we have had showers before but this was quite a challenge. We decided to get there even earlier than normal ( still were not first !!! ) we were on site 5.10am, it was fine rain but not bad so we soon got everything under cover ,got the cars away and set about dressing our stall while watching the developing chaos!!.. after a van got stuck , they then banned any cars from the grass so hundreds of stall holders had to queue to get on site on the narrow tarmac paths between what is now like a bedouin encampment.
Actually on the whole very little drama and all very good natured, before long it was business as usual,
I take my hat off to all the traders who turn out and get on with it despite huge challenges and p......g rain and thank you to all you lovely people of South London who came in your droves dressed in amazing outfits and made it all worthwhile.
We had great fun and enjoyed the sociable side of our business , could not help patting ourselves on the back for being organised , kept mainly dry , changes of clothing, hot drinks, picnic , only a bit of washing to do to remove the evidence of a day under canvas. It was after 7pm when we left the site,don't let anyone say we don't work for our living.
All the lovely French things Lizzie and I sourced on our last trip were very well recieved and appreciated, so I can look forward to going in August for another week with my lovely friends Ticky and Nick when the holidays provide some more buying opportunities.