Vintage at The Village Hall, Blandford Forum, Dorset

Alice Roberton enjoys a sneaky weekday's vintiquing at an action-packed fair


Vintage at The Village Hall brightened up last Monday (14th October) with style, welcoming several hundred people through the doors of Blandford Forum’s Corn Exchange for a jolly weekday shopping experience.


With an offering of elegant homewares, gorgeous vintage fashions and textiles, workshops, and booksignings, it was exactly how the perfect vintiquing week should begin. Organiser Elaine Kirsch seems to have hit on a recipe for success with her event and, with the help of friend Jo Hall, there was even tea and cake to refresh visitors too.


Pearl Lowe was at the event signing her latest book, Pearl Lowe’s Vintage Craft. Pearl, an inspiration to many lovers of vintage style, spent the day chatting to visitors and exchanging stories.


Victoria Hopper of Vic Loves To Knit, from Romsey in Hampshire, is such a keen knitter that she bought this wonderful vintage birdcage to house knitted birds! ‘I’ve been looking for one for ages, so I’m really pleased,’ she said.


Good friends Wyn Mackey and Denise Symmons were delighted to be out shopping together after Wyn booked a last-minute flight from Dublin for a minibreak. Denise just had to snap up this Avon soap set, which we featured in a recent issue of H&A. ‘From 1982 to 1986 I worked as an Avon lady in the Blandford Forum area and have a small and much-loved collection of soaps, giftsets and perfume bottles. This is a wonderful find!’ she said.


Fashion buyer and collector Samaya Ling was busy rummaging away and, if her full shopping bags were anything to go by, it seemed she was having a successful day. I loved this 1930s applique on water-silk bolero jacket that she found.


Sara Sinaguglia (wearing black) was holding crochet workshops for visitors such as beginners Sophie and Ali Bowerman. Sara was also offering insider tips from her book Simple Crochet to more experienced crocheters like Miriam Gibney who was in need of a bit of advice on a project she has under way.


Interior designer Annabel Elliot (pictured centre, with Elizabeth Horsey and Heather Shepherd) is the Duchess of Cornwall’s sister and has worked on many Duchy of Cornwall estate projects. She had a successful sweep on doll’s furniture for her shop at the Once Upon a Time stand.


As ever it was a joy to be out and about with H&A. Here’s where we’ll be throughout the coming weeks, selling great homewares, textiles, fashion, magazines and subscriptions.


Thursday 31st October to Sunday 3rd November, Antiques For Everyone, Halls 17-19, NEC Birmingham, West Midlands


Friday 1st to Sunday 3rd November (Fri 9.30am-8pm, Sat 9am-7pm, Sun 10.30am-5pm) – MK Handmade and Vintage Christmas Extravaganza, MK Shopping Centre (outside John Lewis), Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire

Saturday 2nd to Sunday 3rd November, 10am-5pm – Jukebox & Retro Fair, Chessington Community College, Garrison Lane, Chessington, Surrey

Saturday 2nd November, 10.30am-4.30pm – Penshurst Vintage Christmas Fair, Penshurst Village Hall, High Street, Penshurst, Tonbridge, Kent

Saturday 9th November, 11am-4pm – Vintage in the Shires Olney Fair, The Church Hall, Church Street, Olney

Saturday 16th November, 9am-3pm – The Vintage & Makers Market, The Assembly Rooms, South Molton, Devon

Sunday 17th November, 11am-4pm – My Little Vintage Fair at Bosworths Garden Centre, Finedon Road, Burton Latimer, Northamptonshire

Sunday 17th November, 10am-3pm – Vintage Zoo, Chessington Community College, Garrison Lane, Chessington, Surrey

Sunday 17th November, 10am-3pm – Homespun Christmas Fair, Gerrans Parish Memorial Hall, Gerrans Hill, Portscatho, Cornwall

Saturday 23rd November, 10am-4pm – My Little Vintage Fair at Nene Court, The Embankment, Wellingborough, Northamptonshire


Sunday 24th November, 9.30am-4pm – Bath Vintage & Antiques Christmas Market, Green Park Station, Bath, Somerset