Friday, 12 October 2012

Treasure on my Travels

For a while now I've been absolutely fascinated by vintage ephemera - letters, shop receipts, diaries and tickets from days gone by. I love social history and I find the notion of somehow being connected to people from the past by the ordinary things they've left behind both exciting and in some way comforting.

We had a trip to Devon last weekend with some friends and couldn't resist introducing them to the wonderful town of Totnes...brimming with gorgeous shops to explore and with a lovely feel to it. We popped into 'Inspired Buys' as there's always a fabulous collection of treasures to look at, both vintage and vintage-inspired. I came away very happy with two purchases...

...the first was a telegram, dated 9th July 1941. It was the gold envelope that first attracted me to it, but when I opened it up, I had a lovely surprise...

...this colourful, handwritten telegram waiting to be discovered!

I'm going through a phase of having bit of a soft spot for vintage boxes at the moment. Needless to say, when I saw this one I knew it had to come home with me!





The box even still had this original piece of paper in it, nestled away in the bottom.

I had no idea there were so many different styles of collar.

The name and address of the box's original owner are still on the outside of the box. I wonder who Mr Harvey of 6 Melrose Avenue was?

Printed in the bottom of the box are a list of 'Helpful Suggestions and Conditions of Service'.


Helpful suggestion number 14 made me smile - "Please don't keep our messenger wating at the door. Our van has 200 calls to make per day. If kept 5 minutes by only 12 of these, one hour is added to their day's work. Please think it over, and you will always have box ready'.


Here is another treasure I found on my travels recently, this time in a secondhand bookshop in Looe, Cornwall. It was the colourful spine that first attracted me to it on the shelf...and then when I opend it, I found all manner of interesting bits and pieces inside.

I studied Design at university and ever since then I've had a love of typefaces, particularly ones from the 1930s and '40s. Imagine my glee when I saw all of the old advertisements in this 1931 annual!

They just don't write advertising copy like this anymore - "We have searched the world for Treasures for My Lady's wardrobe, and have returned with the Newest and Smartest designs and dainty garments by the foremost designers from every corner of the globe"...and what a fabulous idea - a restaurant and hairdressing all in the same place!

There's something so evocative about vintage advertisements.




This Doidge's Annual is bursting with just about every useful piece of information that anyone in the Western Counties would have needed to know in 1931!


There are even lots of stories to keep readers entertained.

The Annual ends with a Christmas message to all its readers...I hope 1931 was a good year for everyone who read it.

1 comment:

Liz said...

What a fabulous book - just the sort of thing I love! The collar box is an amazing find.
Liz @ Shortbread & Ginger