Tuesday 21 June 2016

The Summer Brocante in the grounds of Cowdray House!

I love the countryside. I love the calm and tranquillity,
trees, wildlife and flowers.
Then pop up a marquee for a day filled with vintage
goodies .... heaven on earth! ....... SJH

As if going to a vintage fair is not enough, to have it held in the grounds of somewhere like Cowdray House it is quite frankly amazing.  I love the countryside, wildlife and trees .... lots and lots of trees and to be in a setting like
that and going into a vintage fair of this magnitude well its exciting! The weather behaved thank goodness but the thought that had gone into this fair was amazing.  Two large marquees were set up but also outside there was a marquee for a pop up cafe/restaurant and a horse shoe of little marquees so that people who had fabrics and delicate's were protected too, either from the rain if it came or sun.

 Also there were people in the middle outside with garden objects and a rather fine shepherds hut on display with details how you could order your own!!!  Oh let me tell you if when we move I can fit
one of those babies in .. I will.

It was an amazing vintage event and the work that must have gone into it was outstanding.  Even the tiny detail of  toilets was thought about beautifully because they were not just your all common port a loo ... they were beautifully clean and thought about with the basins that look like raised bowls, proper hand wash and spare everything within.

They had a proper coffee stand inside the cafe with a couple who actually roast their own and it was delicious as well as just before you go in a takeaway coffee van too.  In the centre next to the shepherds hut was a great stall that sold homemade cordials such as lime and chilli, nettle or
elderflower to name just three and you could have those or you could add a gin! very civilised ...

There was plenty of parking being that it was held in the grounds of Cowdray and it was marshalled so it was so easy in and out.  On the way out you could go either way and had been sign posted so that you knew in which direction you needed ... as I say every fine detail had been thought out and it showed.

I was on the hunt for certain things as you know and mainly fabrics and things for my work,  the choice was outstanding.  We arrived when it opened so I had chance to look around without crowds and that is what I did first and then later I took photos for you all to look at.  Again I could not take photos of everyone but I did ask and take photos of all the stalls that I bought from and who I get near enough to take good photos without disturbing the buyers, which was easier in the end because it became very busy .. but not over crowed which was wonderful.

Cowdray House and grounds is sort of nestled between Midhurst and Petworth towns and has a lovely drive up with the view of the big house.  They were also offering rides around the Estate in a Land Rover for £5 each as well.

In the pop up cafe they served beautiful cakes and cold drinks along with an array of quiches, salads, large homemade sausage rolls and Scotch eggs .. all of which where handmade and not mass produced and bought it.  Each table had little jars of wild flowers on them along with leaflets and flyers of further events for your diaries.  I can report that the salads and scotch eggs were really very good indeed.  We did not have cake at all, not even my cake searching husband!! I know, I did ask if he was ill at all .....

Well not in any particular order I went in through to wonderland when we paid, it is just like walking through the best shopping centre in the entire world, vintage goodies everywhere you look.
 Outstanding and beautiful displays and a atmosphere all of its own.

First I spied The Old Haberdashery and went up and caught up with the lovely Sonia.  When I was very poorly earlier this year Sonia would put up gorgeous photos of things in her shop and would send me things through the post ... Helped me no end to my recovery.  As normal her stall was beautiful and with lots to tempt.  I bought some vintage sylko threads and an inspiration pack with a beautiful line of vintage flowers to stitch onto a piece of work that I am in the middle of stitching at the moment.  I was looking for something but was not sure what ... until I saw this pack so I am now going to be incorporating it into my piece of stitchery this week.

Then I spied Emma of Little Wren Vintage and she always has an eye catching stand with oodles of
gorgeous fabrics and quilt pieces ... today was not exception.  I looked around here twice actually and bought some wonderful bits and bobs, which of course I will be showing you all my vintage finds and treasures later in the week, but for now take a look at Emma's amazing stand.  We were able to catch up and laugh about my looming move ( if we find a house soon that is)  I keep buying things for a house I do not have as yet and it is a source of mine and Emma's amusement to laugh about how it will all come together .. and hope there is room for it all too!! eeeek.

Then I remembered that I had to find Rosie's Armoir because I had ordered some bits of blanket in light browns and beige colours and I wanted to make sure that Helen knew I had arrived so I went in search of her, which was not easy because she was meant to be in the main marque but was actually outside in the horse shoe of the little marque's in the corner ...  I luckily found her and we caught up.  Helen handed me some blanket bits and would not take one penny for them , so very kind and I would like to thank you again Helen.  I also bought some lovely fabric bundles and bits from her and of course later on in the week you will see everything I bought at this amazing vintage fair.

Then wandering around guess who I found .. The lovely Simmone of Ayres and Grace .. Oh this is one very talented lady indeed.  Simmone makes all sorts of animals.  They look so real but in a sort of
whimsical way.  I was talking about it with her and she said that they have to look lifelike and real even if they are wearing a dress or pantaloons!!  I agree too, it is all in the face and features and we are like sisters in a way about how we feel about things ... as always such a lovely catch up with such a wonderful lady.  I have several of her pieces of work and am thinking about other bits that I should get from her.... Its this bloomin,' house move thing .. decorating before I have it, so I was a little restrained.

Then the smiling face of Suzi of Hearts 'n Kisses caught my line of vision and I went over for a quick chat and a photo shoot!  As I was doing this Suzi became mobbed with people but I did manage a little purchase of my own!  As always her stall looked really beautiful and people had come especially to find her ...

She did manage to tell me that she had made something for one of her sons for his and his girlfriends house together .. It has become a talking point between their friends.  It is so lovely that he sees his Mums talent and likes it.

Turning around I found the lovely Christine of The Sea Garden and of A Mermaids Tale blog fame.
 Christine is such a lovely gentle soul and a very talented maker of all things gorgeous!  Of course I succumbed to some fabric bits and something that she had made .. one of her new designs as a matter of fact and I am the first person to have one ...

Christine lives in Cornwall and has a shop, she loves beach combing and the sea but has branched out with her new design but you will have to come back Thursday to have a peek of her new designs but there is one on the top far left of this picture ... more about it on Thursday though..

Then by chance I spied Chalk and Paisley and went over for a chat and catch up.  Her stall was so very beautiful.  I had a little look whilst doing a photo shoot but alas there was no paisley fabric as fabric but there was some lovely antique bits and handmade things on offer.

Some really beautiful cushions too ... I didn't succumb to any more not yet .... I keep thinking it will look to crowded here to sell if I do but now I think I should have got some and wrapped them up and put them away until after the move .. Never mind, I did not take my own advice and buy it when you see it policy!!

Next door to was The Apple Loft again with so much to look at and purchase.  There is another one
of the Love Lane Vintage events in August and another later in the year.  I only hope I will be moved by October time and that I can pick up some scrummy bits from these people then.  I know some of them will be back then so I was again very good in not buying for the home.

I was off to find The Velvet Ribbon stall outside in one of the individual marque's and there she was, I was so pleased.  Always but always there is a pile of stunning fabrics and today to my absolute pleasure I was not disappointed at all.  Each bundle had a vintage ribbon on with a corresponding palette and there were a few vintage ribbons singularly that matched some other fabric pieces ... yes ladies and gents I did.  It had to be done and it is for work so therefore I can buy it without thinking about it being for a particular room in a house that I have not bought yet!!  As you know I will be putting together a work box for my first weeks or so survival of the move and I am collecting with that in mind ...

Mercer and Rose were there and at another show they attended I bought that darling little blue drawer
set if you remember.  There were some bits there that I needed from my shopping list including some little silk flowers so I was able to purchase some things and catch up.  This is where I got the heads up that the salads in the pop up cafe were amazing and they were right too, they were!!

I spied that hat box in the picture but again I did not listen to my own advice ... kicking myself now.

Then joy of joy I found Lisa of Lovely Hudson, Hudson is Lisa's beautiful dog and is so famous on Instagram I can tell you.  It is fitting that her business is named after such a handsome chap.  Well Lisa had lots to tempt all as well, with some beautiful furniture pieces but again I was restrained.  There was however a basket of vintage quilt pieces so I did come home with a piece for my collection.  It will be used in a design yet to be thought about and is waiting patiently for me to up cycle it into something that people will look at daily and not hide in a cupboard or drawer....

Found Country Antiques was there and there was a most beautiful vintage swing seat but it had
already been sold, which is a shame for me, because that would have come home that day.  I would like a swing in the next house for me to sit on in the garden and watch the wildlife.  I love swings and have never grown up when they are about, and I never will I suspect!  Alas it was not to be this time but it just goes to show things are out there in the Antique and Vintage world, you just need to be patient and look.  All was not lost though as there was a beautiful piece of vintage patchwork fabrics stitched together and I came away with that tucked into my basket of goodies!

I must just show you the homemade cordial stall that was outside and they are for hire at events as well.  They make all there own cordials and these  can be drunk as a long refreshing drink or mixed as a cocktail or a Gin and  tonic.

 There are some fabulous flavours which change all the time with the seasons and what is about in the hedgerows for foraging  ... thus the name.
Hedgerow Cordials ....  I might have to get them to our house warming party me thinks!!  Such a lovely couple with a great homemade products.

Will and Bea and The Vintage Blanket Co. were sharing a stall which works very well indeed because their things blend perfectly somehow.  I was tempted to some bits from both of them and they were tucked into my trusty vintage basket .... By this time my lovely husband had been back to the car for me to put things in so that my basket was empty as I went around.

I found some beautiful lace and a great little stone antique pot jar with Boots on it ... pictures later in the week.

Outside was a huge stall and it was a mother and daughter team.  There were two names as they were different business but I can only find Three Angels but between them they had some gorgeous things.  The Daughter had vintage linens dyed in France by a lady and it must have been Woad because the colours were amazing ... different shades of blue.  There was antiques for the home and garden as well and it was one of those stalls you had to walk around and around to take in all the beauty.  I apologise for losing a slip of paper but if you are reading this please leave a message to add you name to this.  We had a lovely chat and it is such a shame I have been such a numpty and lost your details ..

And last but certainly not least was Nicholas and Steele and there stall of vintage treasures, from old
pots that used to contain Cream ( this was in stone and cranberry colours) or Marmalade jars and more.  There was an amazing windmill along side some antique chocolate moulds.  Some unusual and beautiful pieces as always ...

There were antique books, china and little ducklings .. it all looked so lovely and inviting.

Well it was then time to head off slowly home.  We decided to eat at home and have dinner cosied up together as the rain had just started to head in on our way home.  The clouds were black as night and the rain fell ... so we decided to meander home through the Sussex country side but not stop and have a warm bowl of soup when we got home instead .....

Hoping you have enjoyed a little look around the fair and if you have never been and ever get the chance to visit a Love Lane Vintage Event then do, they are so worth making the effort for.  It is a two hour journey for us.  We go on the motorways and return the scenic route every time.  The Sussex country side is magnificent and worth taking your time over.

Have a wonderful day and as always Happy Stitching!


  1. What a thoroughly lovely read this is-sounds like such a wonderful day! So many gorgeous vintage sellers and beautiful craft items-thank you!

    1. Thank Alison, it was a great day out and I highly recommend the Love Lane Vintage events.

      I am glad you enjoyed reading the blog today and thank you so much for taking the time to leave a comment, it is much appreciated.


  2. I agree with Alison. Really enjoyed reading it and I know how much time and effort goes into writing a piece like that and adding photos. The setting sounds wonderful. I went a couple of times to the Country Living Fair at the Business Design Centre in London but gave up going as I would come out feeling like I'd been in a battle, it was so overcrowded and hot. I always thought they should hold it in the grounds of a large country house.
    I think you must have a very understanding hubby Sarah. Does he enjoy vintage goodies as well?
    I haven't been to a vintage fair for years now and I would so love to go. The trouble is that I have two beautiful furry children (also known as Labradors) that we can't bear to leave at home and I don't think they would be welcome at the fairs even though they are quite well behaved. I just need to find a vintage fair in a field next to a car show to keep hubby and doggies amused.
    I'm going to see if Love Lane Vintage have a fb page. Xxx

    1. Hi Dawn
      Thank you so glad you enjoyed the read, yes it takes hours to do a piece like that but as long as I know people are reading and enjoying then it makes it so worth while... so good when you get left comments, I appreciate it totally.

      Dogs are welcome at the Love Lane Vintage fairs and there were lots there on Saturday plus you can walk them around as long as you clean up after them, they are very happy with you bringing your Fur babies along! They are allowed into the marquees as well.

      My husband is the best! he supports me in all that I do and we go to lots of fairs. He has got to know some of the husbands of us vintage lot and has become good friends with some as well.
      He loves vintage tools and garden things and goes off looking and he will look for me as he knows what my taste is in fabrics etc. We have hours on our own at these kind of fairs and meet for coffee's and lunch and he lets me go off and photograph. Then we have a wander around together too, he has become well known now and enjoys these days too. If there were vintage cars as well he would be in heaven ... some events there are ( I call those the man creche paddocks!)

      Cakes are the other pull for my husband and at these sort of events, usually, he has a few pieces ... annoyingly he does not seem to put on weight!!
      Love Lane have another event coming up in August, I will be doing a blog next week with dates for up and coming fairs .. so watch this space.
      waiting for all addresses to come in for the parcel sending but if some do not reply by end of week will go to PO to send yours ... its ready to go.

      Have a great day and thank you for commenting Dawn.

      Sarah xx

  3. Looks like you had the most wonderful time
    Julie xxxxxxx

    1. Hi Julie
      Yes it was really really good, like walking around the best shopping centre ever. All that gorgeous vintage fabric and goodies under one roof and so much talent on the making side ... fabulous event.

      Sarah xx

  4. All those muted tones and patina simply gorgeous presentation... what I love about modern vintage fairs a far cry from the junk shops of my youth (which I adored even then).... aren't we privileged to call it work

    1. Oh yes we are so privileged to work in this world!
      It was a great fair and there are quite a few more on the Horizon.

      Sarah xx

  5. Oh I'm so pleased to hear my doggies can go and that there will be other doggies to say hello to.
    Your hubby sounds so nice and I can totally understand his interest in cakes. I love baking them and eating them! I've always dreamt about having a vintage chintzy tea room and decorating it with lots of bric a brac and books for sale. Al Bowlly playing in the background. It's nice to dream , isnt it. Xxx

  6. Hi Dawn
    Oh yes dreams are what make realities I always feel, our goals if you like!

    Oh your tearoom sounds wonderful, let me know when it opens & I will bring hubby! First day sales would be good ...

    Next week I am doing a blog for dates for fairs for July and August so keep an eye. Possibly Tuesdsy ( collating what I know of you see)

    Anyway have a great day!

    Sarah xx

  7. Sounds lovely!! Sorry I have not replied to your comment on my blog but you come up as a 'no reply blogger'. I won't be at VB jumble as away on my hols but will be at the VB in October. M x

    1. Hi M

      Oh shame but look forward to seeing you in Oct.
      Have a great holiday...
      I must see if no reply can be changed !! I did not know it was that.

      Take Care
      Sarah X