Thursday, 30 January 2014

Year of the Horse

Chinese New Year is on the 31st of January and 2014 is the Year of the Horse. It is considered a fortunate year that brings luck and speedy success.

Why not treat yourself to a horse keepsake to welcome in the New Year. Here's a selection of horses (and horse themed items) we spotted around Alfies:

Vintage brooch offered by The Originals
"Horses of Britain" book, from the "Britain in Picture" series from 1941 onwards. Offered by The Originals.
1950s Celluloid horse shoe horn, Japan. Offered by Carole Collier

Vintage horse brooch offered by Carole Collier

1930s Oil painting, jumping horses. Offered by Peran Dachinger's Fine Art

Mid Century Vase, West Germany. Offered by Robinson's Antiques

Victorian silver brooches. Offered by Naneen Brooks
Classic Gucci horsebit design, 18ct yellow gold. Offered by Gareth Brooks

18ct Tie pin depicting a racehorse, Essex crystal. c1900. Offered by Kieron Rielly.

Friday, 24 January 2014

Propaganda Scarves

During World War II, there existed a particularly visually rich tradition of propaganda scarves, created for the benefit of an army. These scarves, depicting militaristic iconography, patriotic flags and maps, were then sold to profit the war effort, simultaneously creating a new class of fashion and very loaded 'conversation’ prints. 

Jacqmar of London made propaganda scarves from 1940-1945.

Leslie of Tin Tin Collectables talks us through his collection of Jacqmar propaganda scarves available at his shop: 

"This jolly scarf could easily be looked over as a piece of propaganda - in fact it is encouraging you to listen to a radio programme called 'Music While You Work' a rather up beat radio show which was meant to cheer up munitions workers during their shift."

"This is a military one, and one of the earliest produced - it featured the logo ‘INTO BATTLE’ and had all the military regimental crests fitted into a large brunswick star. It is on hop sack rayon."

"When America joined the conflict this 8th Army scarf was produced as a sweetheart keepsake - this example is on rayon."

"A really clever piece of subtle propaganda. The war office approached Jacqmar to produce a series of scarves which subtly ‘bigged up’ the French - this one promotes the wonderful art connected with French painters (there is a Spaniard and a Dutch man thrown in for good measure). This example is on rayon hopsack."

"The British Restuarant was a canteen set up to provide a hot meal for families who were bombed out - the food was extremely basic, perhaps corn beef hash, boiled beef & carrots etc and the canteen suffered form a rather bad image. The war office were already working with Jacqmar and asked Arnold Lever to come with an idea to promote the restaurant to a better profile. The scarf which looks like a table cloth from a bistro has the names of Londons finest eateries written round the edges…. Mirabelles, The Ritz, LaGavroche,The Savoy Grill…… and tucked in amongst them……The British Restaurant! This example is on silk."

"The second of the military scarves prompting the Combined Operations initiative, again this is on hopsack."

"Although most propaganda scarves are pretty rare - this is the rarest of all, this is only the second of these I’ve come across in 20 years! It’s called The London Wall and depicts a brick wall with bill posters with all the popular sayings of the war…Lend to Defend the right to be free……Careless talk costs lives…etc. This example is on silk."

"Another rarity from the home front stable is JACQMAR PRESENTS. This brightly coloured scarf has a multitude of catch phrases which were from popular BBC radio programmes - Television was still a bit of a non starter so the population ‘listened in’ on radio sets and many German propaganda stations existed, like Lord Haw Haw William Joyce whose catch phrase is seen here - Germany Calling! - the scarves message was to encourage everyone to only ‘listen in’ to the BBC."

"This is the first of the home front scarves and depicts Winston Churchill with various quotes from some of his speeches - this example is on rayon."

Thursday, 16 January 2014


All this miserable weather getting you down? Bring some sunshine to your rainy day with these summer colored antiques.
Spring/Summer patterned curtain design, perfect for a vintage style kitchen offered by Carol Collier

Yellow assortment of objects including salt and pepper set, vintage tin, yellow mug, all placed on a beautiful yellow tray, offered by The Originals

Vintage telephone, comes in many different colours offered to you by Thirteen Interiors.
Some vintage books, find many more on the top floor at Alfies from East West Antiques.

Brighten your home with this yellow light shade offered by Vincenzo Caffarella.
Start your mornings with a summery breakfast set offered by W&L Antiques.

Friday, 10 January 2014

Handmade by You & Make, Thrift London - Competition!

Handmade by You studio

As we all know January can be a long and dreary month. The over indulgence of food/drink and irregular sleeping patterns during Christmas and New Year usually takes its toll in January and puts us in a slumber.

So what perfect way to start the New Year than to get creative and learn some useful skills along the way. A new series of workshops called ‘Thrifty Makes’ from Make, Thrift London will be on throughout January at the Handmade by You studios at Alfies. You can learn to how to;
Make sure you are quick to book as there are a limited number of early bird places at just £10! Do not fret if you miss out on the early bird offer as these workshops are not only thrifty by name, but thrifty by nature as you can still take part for the princely sum of £15 (usually £28!).
So no excuses, get crafty! Click here for more info.

Upcycled collar clips

To celebrate the Handmade by You Studio's reopening and new partnership with Make, Thrift London, win a place on their 'Make, Thrift and Mend It' alterations workshop.

To enter, just search for @MakeThriftLDN or @alfiesantiques on instagram
and follow instructions on the competition pic.

Not on instagram? Just visit the makethriftlondon or alfiesantiques page on facebook or follow us on twitter @MaketThriftLDN and @AlfiesAntiques for details on how to enter.

One entry will be counted for completed actions on each platform so you can enter up to 3 times!
A winner will be chosen at random at midnight on Friday 17th January 2014.  The winner will be announced on Saturday 18th January.  Full terms and conditions here.
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