Posts Tagged ‘kitsch’


No, not an actual disaster, but a commission inspired by the Paper Plane range by Disaster Designs.  Back in January I was contacted by a friend who wanted a guestbook made for her wedding.

I’d like something A4 and landscape with coptic binding, as suggested, and we’re expecting 120 guests.  We’ve not really got a theme for our wedding, it’s a bit of a mishmash!  Our invites are vintagey luggage tags and I love the Disaster Designs paper plane range with the old airmail border, old maps, that sort of thing.  My bridesmaid will be wearing teal/turquoise but we’re not going nuts with a specific colour theme.  I don’t imagine that’s very helpful really!

She also included links to some of the Disaster Designs items she particularly liked.  Despite her fears, this was all incredibly helpful!  I had a think, and played around with a few ideas.  My first thought was to have sturdy fabric pages covered with pockets so that guests could write their message on a luggage tag and then slot it into the book – this idea didn’t really get past the rough stage, but it’s certainly something I might attempt at a later date!

In the end we settled on the design you can see pictured above.  I used a map print by Cavallini & Co for the covers: it would have been nice to use a map which was more personal to the bride and groom, but they were born at opposite ends of the country so it wasn’t that practical!  I chose a lovely tan leather to create the look of a quarter-bound binding, and attached a luggage tag to the front bearing the names of the couple and the date.  The idea of using some airmail bias tape as a tie closure was abandoned as, in the end, I thought it made the design look too cluttered.






I did use some airmail style bakers twine on the luggage tag though, which I thought was a more subtle nod to the Paper Plane range.

I loved working on this commission as, like the bride, I am a huge fan of the Disaster Designs stuff.  I can’t believe it’s taken me this long to get round to blogging about it (the wedding was in August!), but it’s here at last and I hope you all enjoy seeing it.

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Retro and vintage wares are still enjoying a huge surge of popularity, so I thought I’d take a peek into the life of a seller who specialises in all things vintage, retro and kitsch…

Sarah, of VintageRetroKitsch, doesn’t just sell all things vintage, she lives them.  A visit to her house is enough to reveal not only a wonderful collection of furniture and curios, but that she has a keen eye for style.

I grew up in a victorian house and it is still my favorite style of property and I have always been used to being surrounded by older furniture, my parents had an antique shop when I was young and I have fond early memories of going to house clearances and being fascinated by all the things that people leave behind.

This has carried on throughout my life and although I have flirted with the likes of Ikea I have always come back to homewares with a past and now my home is a huge mismatch of curios and collectables but I love it.

Vintage suitcases and trunks look beautiful and also serve to hide the inevitable clutter of toys belonging to her young son.

Modern pieces and antiques are displayed side by side in perfect harmony

I started VRK really as I found myself coming across great unwanted things all the time and I was fast running out of space to bring them home and keep them! This coincided with a growing trend for vintage so I decided to try my hand at selling.

We started about 18 Months ago now and we are slowly building up a loyal fanbase. We try to do at least one fair a month and I have an Etsy shop although I am scaling that down as I am not sure its the right medium for vintage, I generate the most interest via my facebook page although I am thinking of sorting out my own website this year, just need a few more hours in my day!

Sarah’s love of vintage is so strongly evident throughout her home that it’s almost contagious.  I left her house wishing I had more room to stash beautiful things, and also with a very strong urge to plant things in teacups!  She has excellent taste and it’s wonderful to see someone who is living their passion.  Sarah trades on Facebook and, for the time being at least, on Etsy.  Sarah is based in Bolton and also takes her wares to various fairs in the midlands (for more details please visit her Facebook page) and if you’re in the area when she’s around I’d highly recommend a visit to her stall.

It is really the ultimate recycling as we are only really the caretakers of our lives . I love to look at some of my things and imagine the kind of lives they must have led, fascinating.

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