I’ve just discovered that today is Old Stuff Day.
I just love Old Stuff. On of my favourite items is my cake stand, made by my very talented friend and artist, Jo Millar of Jo Millar Glass and Ceramics. I have a number of her pieces as they’re not just beautiful, they’re also useful. Multi-functional is always a big plus for me. Unfortunately the top tier of this cake stand became the only casualty of our house move last summer but I still have beautiful 2-tier cake stand and one of her brand new, original design 3-tier cake stands. I need to find more opportunities to use them.
I think I’ve always loved old stuff and I’m sure it originates from spending time with my Nan at weekends going to local jumble sales. My Nan was always well-dressed and it was only as I entered my late teens that I realise the majority of her wardrobe came from jumble sales. Nowadays I love to visit charity shops. I’ve picked up some fabulous items and handbags from them for just a couple of pounds. I love that I get to look a bit different to everyone else rather than an identikit High Street shopper and invariably, it’s always the cheapest items I buy that get the most compliments!
When I was going through significant financial difficulty following my bankruptcy some years ago I truly embraced second hand, vintage and old stuff. It aligns with my values. I don’t buy into commercialism and am not, nor never have been, motivated by money or consumerism. I absolutely HATE going shopping. To spend a whole day at a shopping mall is my idea of hell. BUT, give me the opportunity to spend the day rummaging around second hand shops, junks shops, charity shops or antique or flea markets and I’m in heaven.
In the past year my partner had to remind me that we were on the motorbike so ‘no, you can’t get that entire set of china in the top-box’. I’d seen a rather lovely 6-place setting set of china, including serving tureens, teapot and coffee set in an antiques market in Church Stretton, Shropshire for about £50. I was desperate to buy it but had forgotten that I had no way of getting it home. To this day I regret not arranging to have it couriered or finding another excuse to return to that part of the country to collect it!
In the past few weeks I bought myself an old bureau for £20. I love bureau’s. I love what they look like and I love the history that lies within them. I’d seen it advertised on a local page and excitedly loaded it into my car. I arrived home and asked a neighbour to help me get it into the house as my partner was away. It was lovely to read the 40-year old newspapers lining the drawers! I set it up and was rather pleased with my new workspace and the way it looked in the corner of our dining room. However, when my partner returned home he discovered it was riddled with woodworm so it was swiftly moved into the garden so the rest of our furniture didn’t get infected. I weighed things up and decided the cost of treatment and the time it would take was too much for me so the bureau has unfortunately become firewood.
My partner is going away again shortly and I know that the first thing he will do when he walks back in through the door is look around to see what other old items I have bought to enhance our home. It’s become a bit of a game but I hate seeing perfectly good old stuff being binned in favour of the latest fashions. An eclectic mix of old and new enables us to display our personalities, help the environment (reduce, reuse, recycle) and keep a little bit of history.
What Old Stuff do you enjoy?
You can find out more about how I coped through bankruptcy in my book: Create YOUR Blockbuster Life: How to Step Out of the Wings into YOUR Spotlight.