Alice Roberton enjoys a busy day of Christmas shopping in North Devon
The last time I visited The Vintage & Makers Market was in June, when we were in the middle of a heatwave and vintage swimming costumes were flying off the shelves like they were going out of fashion. But with a wintery chill in the air, the November fair, which took place last Saturday (16th November), was all about finding warming things for the home and Christmas gifts for loved ones.
Friends Paula Odam and Tammie Brayley had intended to shop for presents but admitted that they had mostly bought things to improve their homes. Paula bought a wicker bedroom chair painted in a cornflower blue, while Tammie snapped up this standard lamp from Stevie's Stitches & Stuff for her 1930s townhouse living room.
Exeter based Kookolki (Russian for dollies), run by sister-in-law team Ksenia and Kirsty Scorer, offers upcycled lampshades made using pretty vintage and modern fabrics. Each lampshade is an individual creation and they take commissions too.
As well as homewares, there was an abundance of vintage and antique fashion, accessories, makers' trimmings and handmade gifts - all in the stately setting of The Assembly Rooms.
Trader Alison Brooks sold this fabulous 1950s turquoise boucle yarn coat to a fair regular, the stylish Sheila Grove from nearby Chumley. The detail on the three-quarter length sleeves and pinched collar made it a special purchase and suggested it must have been made by a skilled seamstress.
H&A reader Kate Palmer, who owns a farm at nearby Witheridge, bought this powder-blue 1950s doll's cot from Vintage Style for her granddaughter Clara as a Christmas present.
Trading next to me was was Neil McKernan-Lewis of Gorgeous Old French Stuff, who sells an eclectic mix of vintage and antique items. Annabelle Holloway-George bought this brightly coloured Carlton Ware lemon squeezer to add to a collection she displays on a Victorian pine dresser. ‘It’s not a collection of one kind of thing, more of a mix of things that just look good together,’ she said.
Here’s where we’ll be throughout the coming weeks. Do visit us for fabulous homewares, Christmas inspiration, magazines and great subscription offers.
Saturday 23rd, 10am-4pm - My Little Vintage Fair at Nene Court, The Embankment, Wellingborough, Northamptonshire
Sunday 24th, 9.30am-4pm - Bath Vintage & Antiques Christmas Market, Green Park Station, Bath, Somerset
Saturday 30th, 9am-4pm - Bows & Braces Vintage Fair, The Masonic Hall, High Street, Lymington, Hampshire
Sunday 1st, 11am-3pm - Hancock & Smith Vintage Fair, Star & Garter Ballroom, 4 Lower Richmond Road, Putney, London
Friday 6th, 2pm-7pm - Christmas @ Dairy House, Dairy House Antiques, Station Road, Semley, Shaftesbury
Saturday 7th, 10am-3pm - Original Vintage & Handmade Christmas Fair, The Town Hall, Chipping Sodbury, Gloucestershire
Saturday 7th, 11am-4pm - Market Harborough Christmas Vintage Fair, Three Swans Hotel, 21 High Street, Market Harborough
Sunday 8th, 10am-4pm - Handmade & Vintage Fair, Town Hall, Sheep Street, Stratford-upon-Avon, Warwickshire
Saturday 14th, 10am-3pm - Kitsch & Stitch Vintage & Makers Christmas Fair, The Vestry Hall, Cranbrook, Kent
Saturday 14th, 10am-3pm - Dee Dee’s Vintage & Handmade Christmas Fair, Trull Memorial Hall, Church Road, Trull, nr Taunton, Somerset