The Vintage Bazaar, Frome, Somerset

Alice Roberton enjoys a day in Somerset’s finest vintage and artisan shopping town

Two sisters. One carrying a rug, the other is carrying a bag

Frome has become quite a centre for vintage and artisan shopping due to the fantastic selection of independent shops on Catherine Hill, so the renowned Vintage Bazaar is very at home in the town. It was great to see the local sellers (and buyers!) out in force when I went along to visit last Saturday (19th October).


Sisters Leila and Chloe Wild Smith, from nearby Trowbridge, were delighted with their purchases: a hand-hooked wool rug from the 1930s and a leather handbag with an embossed deer head emblem. It’s this great mix of homewares, fashion, kitchenalia, textiles and trimmings that make this event a real treat.

Donna Lynch holding up a yellow dress

Donna Lynch was snapping up gorgeous dresses and shoes for her Catherine Hill shop Make & Mend Vintage when I saw her. I later popped into the shop, which sells quirky homewares, vintage men’s and women’s fashions, gifts and her own newly launched range of vintage-inspired clothes. ‘Viola in Marble Arch already stock my new collection and I’m currently in exciting talks with other household names about supplying them,’ she said.

Vintage rag rugs on display

Maud Lomberg of Beyond France was trading next to the H&A stand with her wonderful Hungarian linens and vintage rag rugs. Regular fair visitor Angie Sutton from Dorset was one of many people I spotted deciding whether to invest in one.

Helen Langford buying ostrich feathers

Helen Langford, owner of a local artist’s studio, was buying up some lavish looking ostrich feathers for a forthcoming project.

A mother and daughter trading team

It was the first time trading for mother and daughter Jenny and Hannah Jones from Bridport. ‘I’ve been selling for 25 years and Hannah is now having a go. We’ve got a good mix of vintage so we’ll see how it goes,’ said Jenny.

Two buyers holding up their purchases

Kim Mason from Hungerford bought this on-trend faux-fur coat for her daughter, as well as treating herself to an H&A subscription. Meanwhile, friend and trader Dee Atwood from Tetbury bought a wonderful square suitcase to sell on. ‘I love theming my stand. This will be great for a trend I have in mind,’ she said.

Lorraine Race holding a red sewing box she'd recently purchased

Another familiar face at The Vintage Bazaar was Lorraine Race of Lottie’s Vintage Closet, who is a devoted H&A reader. She’d been on the hunt for a red sewing basket for ages and this one on the Ted & Bunny stand was just what she’d been looking for.

Here’s where we’ll be throughout the coming weeks. Do visit us for fabulous homewares, magazines and great subscription offers.

Thursday 31st October to Sunday 3rd November (Thurs 11am-7pm, Fri & Sat 11am-6pm, Sun 11am-5pm), 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