Friday, 5 February 2016

Lots of new gorgeous linens, embroidery ..and the ones that got away!

The end of January saw the first Antique and Vintage Textiles auction of 2016 at Tennants in Yorkshire. The usual fabulous array of quilts, costume, household linens and more luxurious accessories.  I go to buy the linens and embroidered items that I like to sell but always take a look at the costume and have the thought that if only I had somewhere to wear such stunning pieces I could be seriously tempted!  The evening stole and the lame evening coat below are perfect examples of this..

White ermine fur with black velvet trim.

Circa 1930's lame evening coat with fur collar

 Embroidered vintage shawl

The other interesting items included Chinese costume  (sold for £1000)
 And a very old unusual paisley wool shawl

This was estimated in the catalogue at £200-300 but eventually sold for £1300!

The Biba tapestry coat from the late 60's was also very stylish and sold for double it's estimate

I was very happy with the items that I did buy however.  Lots of superb quality Irish linen sheets and pillowcases with hand embroidery and monograms.  Some are shown below and are currently selling on eBay.  Lots more to come!

In one lot was an exquisitely embroidered white Irish linen tablecloth with Chinese figures, florals and motifs.  The embroidery work is superb - this one is attracting lots of bidders on eBay already.

Saturday, 23 January 2016

2016 already! Scottish wool fabrics..tweeds, checks and tartans.

I have only attended one auction so far this year but it yielded an interesting hoard of  unused vintage Scottish wool fabrics - tartans, tweeds and checks.  All from the same household and from a number of different woollen mills all in Scotland and the Borders. Currently (January 2016) for sale on eBay at very reasonable prices but hurry as I don't expect that they will be there for long!

Wool fabrics are becoming increasingly more expensive and more fashionable for upholstery as well as clothing.  I have used some pieces to make cushions for myself and I am quite tempted by one of the fabrics to re-upholster a large footstool that I have - see the last photo for how it may look

Lovely muted heathery russet tones. 

The green based tartan is believed to be Farquharson Modern but  have been unable to identify the other tartans.  They too would give a great contemporary classic look as cushions or stools

 There is enough fabric in this bolt of grey and white pinstripe to upholster an armchair (or make a couple of suits!)

This is the fabric that I am contemplating using to upholster my large footstool (below) 

Friday, 9 October 2015

Last week tablecloths, this week.........

So the last couple of weeks have seen my huge stash of square white linen tablecloths diminished (slightly!)...I do still have boxes of them so if anyone has a particular size or design in mind drop me a line. This week it's time for pillowcases and once again I do have literally hundreds. Some are "everyday use" cotton ones with embroidery or lace decoration and some are more special; cool crisp Irish linen with lace Oxford borders and hand embroidery, monograms and ladderwork decoration....possibly too nice to sleep on but they do dress up a bed or bedroom chair beautifully.  Take a look at some of the sale items below

Thursday, 24 September 2015


I have neglected this blog for a long time! Too busy selling linens and just getting on with life!  But I am now having a big stock clearance in order to make way for new (to me) linens and other textiles that I plan to buy in the next two months ready for Xmas.

I have hundreds (literally) of Victorian tablecloths so I am listing only a fraction of them this week at a very low start price - they do need washing but would make great presents...or just use one yourself. Small selection of what is on offer shown below - all starting at £1

Tuesday, 19 August 2014

1940's clothing stash from auction

Last week I went to an auction that doesn't normally sell vintage clothing and came back with a stash of clothes and shoes (more about the shoes in the next post). Some of the clothes were Victorian but a number belonged firmly in the 1940's. This suit, dress with matching jacket, epitomises the 40's style, very fitted, no excess fabric with the exception of the over-sized padded shoulders....perfect for a re-enactment day or maybe Goodwood Revival.

Something for the children - a boys double breasted tweed wool coat and matching cap. Made by Rowe of London who were one of the most expensive children's outfitters of their time.

And a gorgeous crepe Art silk summer tea dress. The print on the fabric is just so 40's and very pretty. The same box also contained a number of unused fabrics that date to the 40's ... so maybe the intention had been to make more of these lovely frocks

The two fabrics at the right of the photo are fine wool / cotton Viyella and the other two are silk.  All available on eBay but selling out fast!

Sunday, 11 May 2014

Another auction trip and lots of new stock.

This weekend I have been down to Yorkshire to a dedicated textiles sale. I managed to buy a whole stash of linens, furnishings  and costume items. Everything from sheets and pillowcases to tapestries, bell pulls, hand embroidery, costume accessories, shawls and lace. The "piece de resistance" of the sale was a length of Honiton lace.

I didn't buy this but it did soar well past it's estimate of £150 - £250 to reach a height of over £700!

I did buy a large quantity of Irish linen sheets - many with decorative top edges - embroidery and lace.

I also bought a good lot of hand embroidered tablecloth and other table linen. All executed by a skilled needlewoman.

And amongst several other boxes I have acquired shawls, tapestries, lace pieces, quilts, bedspreads, huge Irish linen damask tablecloths and table napkins. One of the cloths is 18ft long and another is 13ft long so perfect for wedding tables or banquets.

So now just the lengthy task of exploring the boxes (there may be other treasures hidden inside).
                   First sorting the linens and checking for damage (if I had this team is would be easy)

then washing (fortunately my laundry appliances are more up to date than these ones)

then the killer....... IRONING!  I'm really not looking forward to that 18ft damask cloth

So look out for lots more to buy in the next few weeks.

Thursday, 10 April 2014

Textiles from Bowood House, Wiltshire.

 This week I am listing on eBay a number of items that originated from Bowood House in Wiltshire. This is a magnificent English country house with beautiful gardens but surprisingly the view you see in the photo below is only what was known as the "Little House" as the original "Big House" was demolished in 1955

 This is a much older view showing the original "Big House" to the right of the picture.

I received an invite from a lady now in her 80's to view and buy a collection of linens and other textiles that  had been made over her lifetime. She was downsizing considerably and now felt it was time to part with them all. The hoard included Christening gowns, nightdresses, pillowcases and more. According to the seller some of the items had originated at Bowood House. Certainly some of the items do bear the laundry mark of "Bowood" and some have monograms and coronets that you would associate with the family from Bowood in the past. The listings this week from this collection include lace curtains....

and the most enormous linen and silk sheet that I have ever seen - 132" wide x 150" long (330cms x 375cms). This sheet has the laundry mark for Bowood and a hand embroidered monogram with coronet, dated 1844. As it is labelled "no 4" there were at least another 3 of these huge sheets originally!

And finally a masterpiece of hand embroidery and needlelace.

This is a fabulous hand embroidered bedspread - huge central monogram "K" with a coronet above and butterflies and foliage with hand worked needlelace inserts to the remainder of the bedspread. It does have some old repairs so was obviously much used and treasured by the family.