Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Layering it on....thickly

Thought that embroidered place mats deserved their own little outing - what a wonderment they are.

How long do you think that these would have taken to embroider?

There is a also an extra large size - each one is executed perfectly in a range of sizes.  You cannot really see in the photos but the larger flowers are different colours on each mat.  Oh, the patience that woman had - I salute you dear in your marvellousness.  I particularly go boggle eyed at the button hole edging. I have some other sets (cough, cough) that I will show you one day - equally lovely I think.

And yes we do use them!

PS: Setting up an Embroidered Mat Museum this afternoon

Monday, 30 July 2012

Last few tickets available. 'Car booting with La Cootard' - a weekend extravaganza

Following the success of last years 'meet' there will be  another weekend extravanganza event in August


Day One:

21.30 - Arrival.  Meeting but not too much greeting  (a little later than last year - to be honest the early start was all too much)
Evening Meal provided - there will be a limit put on portion size.  The amounts that some put away last year was quite staggering as Punter A (as per usual you know who you are) quite literally troughed her way through all  my  profit margin (again).

22.30 -  There will be some evening entertainment (my usual rendition of  'There's a one-eyed yellow idol to the north of Kathmandu' - so popular last year - video available on 'You Tube' - recording contract under review) but a strict curfew of 23.00.  I am coming down hard this year on any slackers who persistently ask for more alcohol and can they 'puhleeeeesss' stay up a little longer.  You will suffer in the morning so the answer is a firm but fair 'no'.There are shared toilet facilities so please ensure no 'gifts' are left for fellow residents this year (Punter P the main culprit here - I was really not  interested in your 'I had a curry last night' excuse!)

23.00 -  Lights out.  I am putting the mockers on 'tittering' throughout the night - we are not in a kindergarten are we!

Day Two:  

 06.00:  Reveille PROMPT.  Again I will have to be strict here - the slugabeds (something for the Shakespearians) who just roll over will be penalised by not attending the main event (a no refund reminder).  Harsh but fair on those of us 'early dawners'.  No showers allowed for the morning shift - wipes are provided for delicate areas. I am also banning use of hair dryers and other electricals  for hair frou frou'ing - it is not a fashion show and again no one thanks a slacker.

 06.30: Breakfast : I have been in liasion with the Olympic team chefs and sought advice regarding calorific intake needed for the day.  A balanced, but carefully budgeted, breakfast has been sourced (Lidl remains open late the previous night so if anyone is free to help with the  shop it would be appreciated...........)

Does it really have to be said that you need to dress appropriately? Those 4 inch heels that some were teetering around in through the mud was quite laughable last year.

06.35: Car Boot Briefing I will call it on the day itself but we may instigate the tried and tested 'pincer movement' technique - it worked very well last year (you may recall how we ousted the 'Chichester Posse' as they tried to muscle in on some tablecloths - I wasn't going to have that I can tell you.).  Depending upon my initial assessment we may perhaps implement the 'Swoop and snatch' method (can be difficult with large crowds but in sufficient numbers we should be good to go on that one). Note to self: remember to complete the medical assessment prior to acceptance - those with dodgy knees and bunions will hold up the main gang and must be refused entry- we cannot be held back for sake of a few....hang on a minute I've got dodgy knees and bunions.....  I will have the standard kit (gold testing/Miller's Guide etc) - could I ask one of the 'Yoof' members to bring an 'i phone' device so that we can tap into ebay memory banks at a moments notice.  Fortunately my memory is prodigious so I can be relied upon for a pretty quick assessment of most fabrics/china/books.  You will have to search your own conscience as you to what you have to offer to the group (some of you will have to search deeper than others.....)

 06.45 Departure: No cars - a short  brisk walk.  Though a full health & safety check of the route has been carried out -  and I will be issuing Hi-vis jackets/hard hats/steel capped shoes - you will be responsible for your own safety both en route and at the actual event.  The less sharp elbowed amongst you will have to fend for yourselves.  The broken rib sustained last year has been settled out of court.....Full liability insurance available on request - optional extra.  Any cat stroking, tittering, stepping in dog pooh will be dealt with accordingly.  Umbrellas/sun cream - optional extra.

08.00: Arrive at car boot.   Another reminder that your fee for the weekend does NOT include the 20p entry fee.  I remember the frantic - bordering on hysteria  (Punter H) -  protests from last year so I am being very clear about this early on.  Please read the very small print in your terms and conditions.  Also a reminder here that it is not my fault if you did not bring your glasses (if you are lucky there might be some at the car boot!).

Main event part one: You have 35 minutes to source the car boot for a special something  for the upcycling activity.  Please try and think creatively - some of your purchases last season were a little weak and there is scope for improvement this year.  I will NOT - I repeat NOT - be giving free advice on the hoof.  The constant badgering last year was overwhelming: 'What do you think La Cootard? Would you buy this La Cootard? What could I do with this La Cootard?' 'Would  H&A like this La Cootard?'.  I know this comes as a shock but I am not Methuselah and there is an extra fee for the 'Personal shopping experience' (again refer to terms and conditions for details).

09.35: Return to Custard Towers (walking faster homeward bound).  Tea an optional extra. Tap Water available on request.  No ice provided - sorry but last year the crunching really got to me.

9.35 - 10.00 - The Preliminary Sortee - where we show off our purchases and secretly dig daggers in Punter B who always seems to have bought THE star item (with her ruddy tra la la's and fiddle de dees - sometimes I could poke her in the eyes).  A reminder that there will be full security checks before entering Custard Towers.  Sorry that Punter B spoiled it last time by smuggling in imported goods - heavily embroidered tablecloths, layered with Crinoline Ladies all for 5p. Are you having a giraffe! That is called CHEATING!  I will be watching very, very carefully this year and after the optional extra tea we can watch the security camera playback to double check in case my eagle eyes missed anything.  Probably should add in here that I have put double bolts on my sewing room door - guided tours are an added extra (the usual terms and conditions apply).  All of my products have been marked with invisible ink, only seen under the UV lights (as sited by the front door).  The 'No to Pinsect' (double barrelled copyright protected)  pincushions are on sale as a souvenir item (no comedic effect here!!).  NB*

10.00 - 11.00 Main event Part Two (I have added in an extra 15 minutes this year as I realise that we are not all as dexterous as we used to be...).  The main fun (guarded use of that word) - you  take your car boot purchase and makes something BETTER & MORE USEFUL out of it.  I am emphasising certain points as the essence of it was lost on some of you last year.....sorry that you had to 'Walk the Walk of Shame' Punter G.....it is a harsh lesson but best to learn it whilst relatively young.

11.00 - The Show and Tell experience.  Here you display your item and explain what you were trying to achieve.  I will encourage applause but cannot be held responsible for any silence....

11.05 - There is a small prize for the winner (as gauged by myself - the vote rigging last year was astonishing...Punter C.....again....)

11.10 - Prompt departure - no feigned farewells and 'We must keep in touch dahling' please.  Say it as it is - it been ok but that is it.  End of.

No refunds offered

Cannot wait

Last years winning entry.....(now part of the 'Vintage Floral Chair in Summer' range - available in all good stores)

Nice detailing! Very well done to this particular punter - exemplary work I think.  I recall that the winner was particularly pleased as they had been wanting to break into the garden chair market for some time...

Before below....

* I have put in a bid for some security frisking devices and x-ray screening equipment post Olympic Games. Fingers crossed because I think that it will come in very handy and will save on rubber gloves!

PS: Book signing outside the Co-op as per yoosh - Saturday 10-10.20. Photographs optional extra (I notice how Ren managed to sneak one in under the wire - ho ho) New job as script writer in the offing.  Glass Emporium thriving. All is tickety boo

PPS: I have got a tight deadline for work looming - if you see me back here within the next week tell me to leave please!!

PPPS: Last minute reminder that urine testing is compulsory this year - I recall the incident from two years ago when Punter F was found to have extra, extra hyper duper caffeine in her urine (in order to turbo charge her already forceful elbowing action).  We are still reeling from the shock and the 10 year ban has another 8 years to run!  You have been warned.

Saturday, 28 July 2012

Bonkers, British, working for the NHS...and London is indeed ready!!!

Thank you Mr Beveridge....

I am proud and pleased to have worked for the NHS - thank you also to Mr Boyle for giving the NHS that moment of shininess.

Health/ill health is something of a leveller for me - reminding me once again of my Dad's phrase: 'We all piddle in the same pot'.  Whilst working in intensive care at my beloved Westminster Hospital (now luxury flats I think...) we would 'share' any  admissions from the Houses of Parliament, for example, with St Thomas' - so Lord XYZ might be in a bed next to the gentleman of no fixed abode who collapsed round the back of Victoria Station.  No distinctions made - all cared for no matter what and I  loved caring for each and every one.

We were not allowed to wear our crisp white starched aprons outside so they do not appear here! I still have my 'hard worked for' frilly hat!  The watch (tick-a-tick-a Timex tra la la - something again for the older viewer)  that I am wearing was/is remains my second bestest Christmas present - given to me when I was a child and my first watch -  circa 1968 - I could not believe that I could have such a wonderful thing - new and all of my own!

Last night was all bonkers and eccentric - lots of 'in jokes' (goodness knows what people from elsewhere made of it) but anything that manages to squash in Nimrod (tears welling up from the off), The Archers, The Shipping Forecast (extra special double highlighted), lavatorial humour and the Queen doing something that she has never done before (extra bonkers) is all good for me.  Hugh Laurie coming on as Prince Regent and/or Lieutenant George would have made it extra, extra  bonkers (but then as Bronte pointed out we would also have to have Stephen Fry and it would go on and on...).  Oh and ending with 'Sailing By' would have be just perfectomuno....

And London did not cock it up!

Friday, 27 July 2012

London's big moment - don't cock it up!! Part One

Ah Londinium - how I loved it as a youngster.  I moved there all by myself many moons ago and stayed for 20 years - north, south, east and west - I hope that I  made the very most of living in that tremendous city - in my time off I would carefully select a new corner to explore and off I would go. Every Monday night I would travel on the underground from Kentish Town to East Acton to go to study at evening classes - two years of hard graft but worth it.  I hope that I used my time well and the great opportunities that it presented - working shifts meant that I could go to the early morning markets and then tra la la off to work later in the day.  Working nights meant that at the end of work I could go to down Brick Lane (before trendiness set in), Camden Passage (before prices went up!),  Columbia Road (well before it too became trendy - I went there for plants!!), best of all was Bermondsey (I still have many of the lovely things that I bought there in the early morning gloom) and Greenwich on a Sunday (went there again recently - not at all how it used to be sadly).  By the way I loved going to work and would arrive all cheery at 07.00 (poor sleep has its advantages!) even when I had got drenched on my bike.

Nowadays I get worn out just thinking about it! Anyway I still like London 'stuff'

A tablecloth with the London Underground map on it can be very handy don't you know!!

And of course a London tin or two...

For many years we lived not far from Streatham Common and my district nursing 'patch' covered that area

Lovely colours I think

I was a 'nanny' (selective use of the term) for a while but I did not dress like this!

Roll out the barra!

I loved London by night and by day - staying up all night and then going to that pub in the old fruit and veg market that opened up at 5 in the morning for the stallholders (can't remember its name now), going to Trafalgar Square New Years Eve (when the fountains were still splashable), going to Live Aid (first time around!), going to Lord Mayor's Show, helping out at the Marathon (in its early days!), cycling to work across the Thames and past Westminster - tra la la'ing on my bike.  Lucky enough to go the theatre several times a week for free and meeting the cast if I wanted to!!! Attending all sorts of first nights and last nights.  Meeting all sorts of great and not so great - from Anthony Hopkins to  Peter O'Toole - all sorts of off the wall happen stance - all sorts of stuff that build up memories and pleasant times.

 I got to know London like the back of my hand (though this tea towel is handy if you are a little unsure)

I loved jumping off the bus.....

If you live in London make the most of being there - I do miss it still but glad to be by the sea nowadays

Part Two another time

Thank you to http://mrsblacksthisnthat.blogspot.co.uk/  (I don't know how to do that proper link thingy)  for sending me a Kreative Award, very kind of you - I am a bit thick when it comes to such things so please bear with.   Thank you also to Katy http://lovelemon1.blogspot.co.uk/  for nominating a Leibster Award - sorry Katy but my brain could not follow all that I had to here - sorry for my denseness.  I will draft something on another posting I think to try and cover it. I am not very good with  instructions!

Here are 10 things that you might not know about me:

Circa 1979 I had a streak of pillar box red hair

Circa 1969 I won a Tree Lovers League badge

Circa 1971 I won a Blue Peter badge

Circa 1970 I won a national newspaper competition for art

Circa 1975 I came last in the school discus sports event....topical!

Circa 1970 I won a knitted poodle cover in the school raffle....I no longer have it

Circa (now I have started with the 'circas I have to finish'!) 1980 I travelled round Europe by myself

Circa 1984 I had my bottom pinched by Professor Robert Winston at the Christmas Ball

Circa 1986 I joined the Medical Corps for the Territorial Army - selfishly I wanted to learn how to drive a lorry and be part of the Remembrance Service at The Albert Hall

Circa 1990 the man in the flat below us was an actor in 'Eastenders' and used to leave his scripts out for recycling

Circa 1992 I watched sunrise at Tiger Hill, Darjeeling - spectacular and tearful

Circa 1992 I watched albatross flying above our heads at the Otago Peninsula, New Zealand - double spectacular and treble tearful

Circa 2004 I was 'live in the Westminster Studio' on the ITN main news

Yesterday the producer of BBC 'South Today' asked me to get in touch with them 'asap' for an update on a news items on the lunchtime news (as Elaine knows I was going to rapidly rustle up some 'No to Pinsect' t-shirts and wear them....no the article was not about Pinsect but something very, very different!).  I had to go to the bottle bank and get some bread (not from the bottle bank!!).....

I really could go on all day so thank you for listening....

I will try and add in blog favourites though I find that a painful thing to do - I would hate to hurt anyone's feelings ("Jenny funnily enough the world does not revolve round yourself"...oh dearie me)

PS Another 10 days or so of work and then tra la la all done! Hurrah and hurray!!!

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

Citius, Altius, Fortius

Go us!

A nice old tin. I like a nice old tin...but you knew that already....

The picture above shows my usual approach to participation...

If I had an ounce of business acumen I would bring out a range of cards!

I still cry when I see THAT moment with Torville and Dean!

Monday, 23 July 2012

The kindliness of friends....

You might remember how I made a purse printed made from a vintage envelope for a friend's mother for Mother's Day (see here if desparado: http://thecustards.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/dropping-in.html.  The envelope had been written to her father to her mother (sounds a little more complicated than it is!).   I had  made this as a gift but in the words of that old song:
 'Love is something if you give it away,
You end up having more.
 It's just like a magic penny, hold it tight and you won't have any.
Lend it, spend it, and you'll have so many
They'll roll all over the floor'

A few weeks later our friends came round for tea and gave me an unexpected present - I was utterly speechless and then burst into tears.  Well you would have too!

I had to look for a while at the cover of this book as I could not fathom it out! What was my name doing there - there must be another me somewhere in the world doing exactly the same thing!

All my favourite pictures under the cover of my very own book.

There's my wallpaper preserved for posterity.

The embroidered bag top left is one of my everyday shopping bags - I  should not use it so often but it is a favourite of mine.

The best things are when they are least expected don't you think. Thank you to the Robinson family and well done to Martin for thinking laterally as to how to circumnavigate his way round my 'no copying my photos' request (very clever Martin).

This has made up for something that happened recently (oh not something else Jenny - give it a rest please do.  For crying out loud LET IT GO!) that I thought was possibly going to be a great thing for me,  would have given me that shameful self-centered ego boost  and be a bit  more positive about the things that I make. Rather stupidly in the Homes and Antiques article I never even mentioned that I make anything - that would never have happened if I had been a business person (thank you Polka Dot House once again).  Anyway an  interview had been carried out  for another  well known High Street magazine (the one that always has a lovely cover - yes that one). They had been 'inspired' by my entry (ooooeerr missus) and we chatted for a long time.

I was a finalist in their National Awards!! Me!! Yes, me!! 

Photographer booked (I was actually going to have my hair cut for it - I had retained that stylish grey streak for the H&a article but this time I would go for a whole new look!!). I had a chat with the photographer and he told me that he was sworn to secrecy but it was going to be very exciting news for me.....................edge of your seat drama readers

 A week or so after the interview I had a telephone call - they had read the article in H&A - lovely though it was -  my entry would have to be withdrawn -   all rescinded because of fear of copying a rival magazine.  Their readers would not be pleased if they thought they had copied H&A - even though I had not mentioned making 'stuff' in that article.....pause for reflection....

I meekly asked if I had broken any rules/regulations. No came the reply - we just don't think that our readers would like to read about you if you have been in one magazine already...but, but I said....this was about making 'stuff'.....oh stuff it.

  Life is like that sometimes - smacks you in the face like a wet kipper when you least expect it....fully realise that worse things happen in life...would have been very nice though.  Left me feeling full of self doubt all over again...how I wish I could have that brimming self confidence that some possess.  Shop closed before I had had time to turn the 'We are open' sign over..

Now I am going to draw a big line here:
----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------..(ignore that the line is broken - there isn't some hidden symbolism!)

We have crossed that line and we will talk no more of Pintergate and now C.L.Gate!  

I am moving forward - '..for Harry, England (other UK nations welcomed) and St George' (please say this out loud in a Laurence Olivier voice).

Cheers me dear
PS As  Kirstie Allsopp and Emma Bridgewater were judges - I was hoping for my own TV programme by the end of the year.........

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Izzy whizzy, let's get busy....and lovely to meet up with you....sunny days.

To be honest I am a little bit tired now - going to bed later and later...getting up earlier and earlier.  Never mind because more can be shoe horned into those 24 hours (I do sit down and enjoy the garden though). Welcome abroad to new readers - I am trying to concoct some sort of internet treasure hunt (using the Chalky White theme) with a prize at the end for the winner - that would be such a hooooooot!

It was just sooooooooppppppppeeeeerrrr to meet up with lovely ladies yesterday - at least I laughed (did you just think that I was a bit...well....... weird?)  I had a lovely time.......went home with most of what I bought with me.....but had a lovely time.  It was top stuff when....and I had been eyeing up the door trying to second guess who might be a 'Chalky Whiter'.....a woman approached my stall.....looked down a little shyly......dead straight face.......not a flicker of a smile...........said those immortal words....'Your name is Chalky White and I claim my prize'.....I cannot tell you how absolutely super brilliant and ruddy marvellous I thought that was (you might have gauged that from my reaction though....).  Lisa that made my day I cannot tell  you.   Your cakes and biscuits were super too.  Lovely to meet you and your daughter - sorry that I went on a bit (.......a bit.....).  I will do a separate post about the other lovely ladies that I met I think.  Decided that I will do a car boot next week as IT IS NOT COMING BACK IN THE HOUSE!!!  Throughout the day I laughed like a drain..

Today I popped out to the local car boot (I seldom arrive before 10 - not sure why as I am up early enough!).  Set off thinking how I should not buy a thing (apart from any nice plants I thought).....most of  earnings from yesterday spent....

So I bought a nice basket (see here for basket needage: http://thecustards.blogspot.co.uk/2012/02/my-baskets-brimeth-over.html), a nice tin (see here for tin needagehttp://thecustards.blogspot.co.uk/2012/03/my-sewing-room-not-so-tidy-today.html ), a wooden doll (see here for doll needage:http://thecustards.blogspot.co.uk/search?q=jubilee ) and a couple of old books....also (and isn't it funny how things turn out) a Tweed flat cap (Ren I bought this for one of your lads if you would like it).

So I set my self a challenge today and I am going to set up a business model based on my super duper idea (thank you to Polka Dot House for your entrepreneurial skill and staggering business acumen - you know who you are!!.) .  From this day onwards anything that I buy has to pressed into use or upcycled/recycled/mended/bended/sewn/mown/eaten/beaten...you get the idea............. by the end of the day.  The 24 hour challenge has been set.  Within 45 minutes I began to wonder why the heck I had thought of that idea ....

So the basket - I thought that I would line it (have done this a few times and they usually turn out quite nice) so here it is in progress...

The usual sophisticated approach to pattern making - cough, cough...

Are you getting a bit fed up of this fabric?  You might recall that I was given two of these old bed covers earlier on the year from a charity shop manager - I still have a complete one left and lots of this fabric.

Accessories....I did not buy these today...that's me leaning out of the window...

Just in time for Sunday afternoon tea....tra la la..

I also bought (special treat - as it was £15!!! Bang goes half the profit from yesterday already...) a Lloyd Loom table - lovely colour I thought.  Dom says that one of our 'lovely little tables' has to go...

Maille made us some lovely banana smoothies so the table was very handy here

I lurve these colours

Double usage for table as it also served well for afternoon tea....

Blue sky for a change

Thank you as always for lovely comments.   Just off to the beach for evening stroll along the prom, prom, prom and maybe an ice cream to finish off a tiring but lovely weekend.

Best wishes and I hope that all was sunny in your part of the world

Tra la la, fiddle dee dee, off I go, it is ice cream for me!!

PS: The books have been read and the dolls came for tea....phew they all get to survive another day!

Friday, 20 July 2012

If you don't have a Southend tea towel...and something for everyone (well tried hard!)

Thank you all so much for delicious words - you have made an old woman  happy!

Thought of this Missy when you mentioned that you were looking for a Southend tea towel...

Posting these photographs of a purse that I made a while ago - using an image that is not copyrighted (see what I did there!).  This postcard usually lives on our mantelpiece and it makes me smile - I printed it out on to some cotton fabric and used some original 50s seaside fabric on the reverse.  I thought that the lining (an old sheet Ada!) reminded me of those old fashioned paper bags mixed with a bit of candy floss. I thought that this could also easily be done with an old Southend postcard.  Just a thought but I will search high and low for a Southend tea towel - I sold about a dozen of my souvenir tablecloths on ebay I hope that that wasn't Southend amongst them.....I did my midwifery stint somewhere near Southend I think.  I remember all that I did was cry at all the births!  Rubbish am I (said in a Star Warsy type voice)

Please let me know if you make one

For Garden of Daisies - It took me a while to dig out an older photo of a purse that I made last year -(entre nous this was bought by one of the vintage buyers for Cath Kidston after they had bought the other ones so I think that this was for personal usage.....how much longer will I be dining out on that one......).  Particularly handy if you are like me and do not know how to use a Satellite Navigation System (I like to use 'proper' terminology)....you will never get lost again....so long as you do not stray too far from this coast line!

It would be great if you could make one of your local area too

And while I was at it (for A tale of toadstool house)  this took a while longer but I knew it was somewhere - I found my scales photo (this was daft because those scales sit right next to me here so it would have been quicker to take new one!  Today they have two building bricks (the sort that are covered with a paper design) on them.

I do like a nice old tin.....

Mmmm not a very good photo so I will upgrade one day!  Children break up today though of course I'm still working and will fudge through.  Spent a while deleting my photographs from Flickr groups today - all except yours Elaine and three others - a shame that.

Now this is an odd photo to end with you might be thinking.  Well, this is the arm of Stuart - he is a 'right diamond geeezahhhh!  Some of you may know Stuart - an older gentleman with a pony tail and plenty of tattoos to distinguish him from the crowd.  Stuart and I have had many chats putting the world to rights - I make him laugh by greeting him with the words: 'Your name is Chalky White and I claim my prize'.  He likes to talk about his old days in the East End where he remembers the Kray Twins. Stuart works in a charity shop - not in my town but nearby and I go there about once every 6-8 weeks.  Stuart is one of the few men to have admired by bags (not a euphemism) so I have instructed him in the mysterious art.  One day Stuart asked me a favour - would I make a purse for his sister using a photo of his 'old mum' and she liked lilac.  It took me a few weeks to get back there but today I was able to.  He was chuffed as chuffed - he let me photograph his arm for posterity....gor blymy laaarrrvvv.  He was a bit emotional.  I was chuffed too.  Stuart makes me laugh like a drain.  I did ask if it was ok to put this photo here but just in case he forgot in all the unwrapping  I have cut his mum short - I hope that is ok!

I did not charge Stuart very much........ho ho...........said for comedic effect as always
Tatty bye - that is all for a while so have a nice weekend and thank you all so much again.................

Seaside souvenirs - more cheery post I hope

I am sure that you too are fond of items that have a souvenir theme - you may be a little surprised to learn that I have one or two such things (cough, cough) and a few souvenir tablecloths (oh dear this wretched cough when will I be rid of it!). I now try and hang (cling desperately) on to only souvenir items that are local/local'ish to ourselves....fortunately/unfortunately that means quite a bit then..

I bought a few tablecloths for 20p each the other day (from a favourite shop).  Some were a bit faded and I will save the 60s daisy ones for a different post (Bronte was quite taken with those but they were 40p each so I should hope so!).  All of this led me to sort out a little pile (cough, cough) of other souvenir tablecloths and tea towels....

I might have rootled round for souvenir china....

This particular tablecloth I thought was sweet because them names of the towns are set out on a bunting design around the edges thus:

There is stain over Brighton...oh dear.....

Old seaside bunting from a while ago....this time Brighton is stain free - hurrah!

This is Blackpool - not local to myself but a lovely tablecloth so has to be kept

This is a jolly tea towel - I use my tea towels until they are threadbare and then I use them for cleaning purposes (oh but not my really, really nice London ones - they are in frames!).  My dear friend Bryony lives in Cuckfield (see below).

All of these have been bought in local shops and I like them all and the different styles.  I cannot quite remember now but I turned an old tea towel into a series of purses and I think that this is somewhere in the East of England (perhaps someone can let me know please).

Brighton crops up on quite a few of my tablecloths - this one has an unstained character

 Not too much traffico on the sea front

This tea towel of Cornwall I bought years ago and was going to sell it when I saw that Cath Kidston had the same one being sold for £29! Yikes - I have saved it for my retirement plan (let's face it I think that tea towels are probably a safer investment than stocks and shares!).

That's me at Lamorna....

 I like the graphics on this one

This one still has its label on so I cannot bring myself to use it...

I think that this bunting did indeed go to live in Cornwall

I will finish with an old Cornish tea towel - falling apart but nice images.  Just realised that I have forgotten the tablecloths that are local to where we live - I will save those for another day!

I do have one or two more (excuse me while I swig the Veno's...) tablecloths and I think that I will 'stagger' them over the months.  Dom insists that one tablecloth is enough but I say that I am building up a collection for the new 'Tablecloths through the decades - a retrospective perspective' book that I am writing...
PS: Fully realise the folly of my ways and of course everything is up for grabs on the internet - it is no different to thinking that if you cross the road you should expect to be knocked down, that if you walk round at night you should expect to get mugged, that......  Silly of me not to realise this sooner - do apologise.  I am joining the 'grab it while I can - what's yours is mine' world.....A final hurrah is that I notice Pinsect have done something strange to my account (only to request that my photographs are not used by the way!).  What a charming and delightful company they are.