vrijdag 18 maart 2016

What a day for a daydream


Last Saturday, there was a special event at Belgium’s charity shops. As they do every year, they held a  so-called “Retro Day”.


First of all, I need to explain about charity shops in Belgium. Although we have a few charity shops which can be compared with UK ones, like Oxfam, the majority of the shops which for convenience’s sake I will call charity shops, are called “Kringloopwinkels” in Belgium which for want of a better word translates as “recycling shops”.


What’s the same is that what they are selling are donations. What’s different is that they do not support any charity as such: with their proceeds they employ people who are otherwise difficult to employ. Most shops are situated on the outskirts of towns and are generally larger than the average UK charity shop, selling everything including the kitchen sink.


Although some die-hard vintage fans might disagree, there is some reasonably priced vintage to be found in the shops all year round, for those who make the effort to visit regularly. In the run-up to the “Retro Day”, it’s quite another kettle of fish, as every item which can be remotely labeled as vintage is being kept behind.  This is the cause of a lot of frustration, especially since the shops sell these items for a higher than usual price at the day of the event.  There are still a few bargains to be found, though.


By the time we arrived at our first shop of choice (which is spread out over three floors, no less) there were  roughly about a hundred people waiting for the shop to open at 10 am, pushing and shoving to get inside as soon as the doors opened. We had decided to remain in a “zen” state of mind, and this has actually paid off.

This is some of our haul, after a whole day of shopping and visiting three different shops. On the bottom right is our cat Phoebe, who immediately claimed the volume of 1932 magazines we found.


A set of dinner plates and an original box of soup plates from a dinner service we are collecting. It’s from a Belgian pottery called “Boch”, and was issued in 1966 to celebrate their 125th birthday. The pattern is called “Rambouillet” and has become very collectable in the last couple of years.



 A set of bowls from an older blue and white “Boch” pattern  (on the left in the overview picture), which we’ve recently started collecting. My husband’s parents had these when he was growing up.  We started collecting this last summer, when we were actually given some plates at a local flea market.

A Bakelite radio (as seen above), made in Belgium, dating from the early 1950s. It is still in working order, but needed some TLC.



Another Lourdes souvenir for our little collection. This one is super kitsch and still in its original box, and it’s got full working coloured lights.  We’ve also found a Lourdes barometer to join our collection.

A 1970s orange party set to join the slightly different one I already have. I use them to store jewellery. This one is English and marked "Dialene Better-Maid".

A wonderful handbag, which just needed a good cleaning.

Last but not least, some vintage dresses!  In one of the shops there was a whole rail of them. At € 5 per item, it would have been rude not to let myself go, so I bought 5 dresses, including – wait for it – a maxi!



These are just a few teasers

Now, where am I going to put it all?


Oh, and I already wore one of the dresses to work this week ...


17 opmerkingen:

  1. Again great buys!
    That Lourdes souvenir looks so beautiful :-)

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
    Reacties
    1. Thanks Isabelle, you will get to see it "live" soon. xxx

      Verwijderen
  2. All those wonderful finds make me want to jump on the next plane bound for Belgium!
    Can't wait to see all your new old dresses, the one you're wearing is fabulous and I love Phoebe. xxx

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
    Reacties
    1. Thank you Vix! We adopted Phoebe when she was about 1 year old, and we love her to bits, although she can be quite grumpy and doesn't do cuddles. xxx

      Verwijderen
  3. What a lovely handbag with the lucite handle-that's the sort of summer bag that will go with everything.

    I had a Lourdes barometer years and years ago. She would change colours from blue to purple depending on the weather. It never worked well, but it was a conversation piece.

    Oooh, a maxi dress-that will be fun to see. Looks like you did quite well.

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
    Reacties
    1. Thanks Goody. My Lourdes barometer is not as sophisticated as the one you used to have, but I guess our little collection of kitsch Lourdes memorabilia is a conversation piece as well.xxx

      Verwijderen
  4. Some charity shops in the neighbouring county will put their vintage prices up just before the Goodwood Revival, which is a huge event. Bit cheeky if you ask me!

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
    Reacties
    1. A bit cheeky indeed, Melanie. Here they do not even put all the stuff out until the day of the event ... Anything that's not sold will go down in price after a couple of weeks though. xxx

      Verwijderen
  5. Love the colour of the dress you are wearing, and I can't wait to see the other 5 you bought!
    I'm always interested to hear how other countries "do" charity/thrift shops, they are all a little different. And you found some wonderful treasures, I like those plates very much. xxx

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  6. Thank you Curtise! I'm glad you like the plates. We almost have a complete dinner service now, collected bit by bit over the years. Oh, and you'll definitely get to see the dresses, don't worry :-) xxx

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  7. That Lourdes ornament is one of the kitschest things I've ever seen.

    The recycling shops sound like a very good idea, especially if they're helping people who would otherwise struggle to find employment too.

    Having seen the news today, I hope everyone you know is okay.

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  8. Thanks for your concern, Mim. We are okay here in Antwerp, and as far as I know no-one I know is involved. Still, it has thrown me off-balance. After all, Brussels is not all that far away. Feels a bit close to home ... xxx

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  9. Hear, hear! One never knows where vintage may reside and it's wise to keep your eyes open for it wherever you go.

    I'm truly sorry about the atrocities that rocked your beautiful country this week, sweet lady. I hope dearly that no one close to you was directly hurt by these horrible events.

    Many hugs,
    ♥ Jessica

    *PS* Thank you so much for each and every one of your fantastic recent blog comments.

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
    Reacties
    1. Thank you Jessica, you are so kind! Luckily no-one I know was involved. It was still a horrible day yesterday, and everything felt very unreal. Many hugs for you too, and I so appreciate your comments, which mean a lot to me.

      Verwijderen
  10. Deze reactie is verwijderd door de auteur.

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  11. I'm on my third backward blog post read and loving the sound of the recycling shops and it looks to me like we could have identical wardrobes.
    The pattern on the crockery looks like the Orla Kiely logo, it's amazingly simple but so effective.
    Is your house as cluttered with fabulous finds like ours ?
    We see Vix and Jon at Stockport. Do you remember the black n white fur coat she wears well that came from us, it was my hubby Philip's mothers coat. Vix did a great blog page on it

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen
  12. I've also noticed the similarity with the Orla Kiely logo. I must say that it was immensely popular in Belgium in the 60s, absolutely everybody had that crockery. Then it went out of fashion and now everybody wants it back. Our house is cluttered with all kinds of things we like. No minimalism for us. We just need a bigger house, though. xxx

    BeantwoordenVerwijderen