Charity shopping

Bognor Charity Shop Finds

Here's the best stuff I got for very cheap in the excellent charity shops in Bognor Regis (the only entertainment there). The reasons for so many good finds is fairly grim- lots of old people in the area who die and have house clearances of all the 60s and 70s stuff they were hanging on to. Everything cost less than £5.... Read More...

Recent charity shop finds

The good thing about spending the summer in a small town full of old people is that there are a lot of charity shops and jumble sales, they often have good stock, don't overprice and there aren't a lot of other people looking for the same things as me (which is more likely to happen in a big city).... Read More...

Maidstone

The other day I had to go to Maidstone. I really can't think of any other word to describe the place rather than dull. It has the usual chain shops if you want to buy some things, and a pretty town hall and museum, (and a prison with huge stone walls slap bang in the centre) but that's about it. It's the sort of place you go to run errands, no other reason. It's not horrible, but not particularly interesting either.When I was at school I sometimes went to gigs at the student bar there, but it was such a pain to get back in the evenings I didn't bother too often unless I knew someone who was driving. When I was really little I used to go to see the Sooty Show and pantomimes at the theatre, and that was the high point of Maidstone in my estimations.... Read More...

Golden Hands Monthly

got this stack of 70s craft magazines in a junk shop in Devizes a few years ago. That place was amazing, a multi-floored cavern of junk. It's gone now, I think. Here's some photos.There's the usual ultra-cheesy raffia work projects and crocheted plant holders and so on, but the clothes patterns are actually mostly pretty nice, which is why I bought the magazines. What I've scanned is a mix of nice things and weird stuff though. I also couldn't scan double page spreads very easily, because the binding on the magazines is dodgy, and I didn't want to pull them about too much in case they broke. These issues are from 1972 and 1973. I have another issue from 1976, but it's printed on much cheaper paper (the paper quality wasn't sterling to begin with) and the contents are pretty dull.... Read More...

Costumes for Plays and Playing

When I was a kid I used to borrow this book again and again from the local library. The first thing I ever sewed myself was from it. A friend of mine at junior school's older sister was in a school play of Toad of Toad Hall, and we went to watch. When you're 7, 13 year olds seem incredibly impressive. What impressed me even more were the weasel costumes. I wanted one for myself. Armed with an offcut of brown fabric and a toy sewing machine I'd got at a bootfair, I made a hood with ears like the ones in the book. It was wonky, and I was a bit ashamed of it though, and wished I knew how to sew straight (looking back, I'm not sure the toy sewing machine was actually capable of a straight seam). My opinion of my sewing projects has improved slightly since.... Read More...

Smuggle!

This is a board game I got in a charity shop. I think the title deserves an exclamation mark. It encourages children to lie to customs officers convincingly. You get to smuggle dodgy perfume and boxes of cigars through customs. In my head it belongs to an imaginary Father Ted episode where Ted & Dougal are stuck inside on a rainy day, and decide to play a board game, they have a choice between Trivial Pursuit- Papal Edition or Smuggle, then Dougal turns out to not understand the concept of bluffing... Read More...