Monday, March 16, 2009

Antique market and an old bear...............................

Yesterday we went to Pontivy's monthly antique market. We had no idea what to expect but this market has been featured on BBC's antique road show programme. We arrived and found lots of cars and had to park and walk quite a distance. Given that there are no pavements in France and they are speedy drivers, this part of living in France is taking some getting used to. Wonder how they would cope in Mtata in the Easter Cape!The market was enormous and we spent hours looking at all the stalls. The outside area is rather like a good quality boot sale with wonderful old furniture, clothing and bric n brac. There was also a lot of junk!
We found some buttons (old and new), old lace, ribbon and an old bear! I also found one bunch of velvet flowers.

This is a picture of the loot we found including a tiny old music book which Megan has some ideas for.

This seems to be an old French bear. He has been very well loved and has no fur left on his body and his eyes are missing. Embroidered eyes have replaced what would have presumably been glass eyes and he is dressed in an old red knitted suit with bootees knitted by some loving mom or granny. I am not generally a lover of old bears but this one was just too wonderful to leave behind. With my limited French when I first enquired the price I understand that it was sold, gave it a hug and put it back in the box with all the other toys. Decided to pay the bear a visit before leaving and asked again. Realised that he was telling me the price! Being a charming Frenchman asked me what I would pay, reduced his price by some 20Euro and I got a bear and a hug!!!! So Gladstone (Megan's Portobello find) has a companion. I am definitely not going to collect old bears but now have a selection which I love. One of my bears was found by a special friend hanging on the fence of the garbage dump outside Durban. It is a Polish bear and had been very ill treated, hanging in the rain and sun for some time. I had to take all his filling out and wash the entire bear. As these bears are made from a rayon type fabric this was not too much of a problem. Unfortunately his eyes were too damaged to re-use but I will eventually repair this bear and he can join the collection. So my bears have a sort of history of their own would love to know about their previous owners.

I love the vintage velvet flowers which were made in France many years ago. Think they are still produced but the old ones are especially beautiful. Have a small collection which I have purchased over many years including a bunch of violets on a tiny purse. The price has become ridiculously high now and at some £60-70 a bunch in England I have long stopped adding them to my collection. When scratching through a box of old lace I found this bunch of violets. They were very reasonable and I came away very happy with my new addition to my collection. They are in a remarkably good condition so I will have to keep looking. Weekend markets could become a major outing for us!!!
The winter seems to be over and spring has sprung in all its glory, the trees are starting to bud and the fruit trees in the garden will soon be in flower. The bunch of daffodils in the picture behind the old bear I found in the local garden refuse dump. A whole clump growing there where someone had thrown out the bulbs last year I suppose. As I am a re-cycling fanatic I was thrilled to discover there are various bins for all my plastics, glass and paper so we took a walk with our bag of recyclables. So finding the daffs was an added bonus. If I was staying in this house permanently I would dig up the bulbs and plant them under the trees.
Have a great week, I have bears to complete.

Happiness lies for those who cry, those who have searched, and those who have tried, for only they can appreciate the importance of people who have touched their lives.


Patricia said...

The velvet flowers - to die for!
As you say, the price has become ridiculous for velvet flowers, IF you can find them. Well done Wendy!

blue-doggie said...

Like the old bear, even though he looks rather comical in his red "leotard", jersey and booties. At least he was loved.


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