As I happily tweeted last week, I spent Saturday morning at a church fete rummaging through lovely old nick nacks. Once a month, St John’s Church at Dee Why holds an op shop which sells clothes, shoes, accessories, linens, kitchenware and other assorted homewares. There’s lots of books, CDs and DVDs too. I like to spend a good hour sorting through the piles of things for sale. You really have to look hard and assess item carefully, but that’s all part of the fun of vintage shopping!
I got chatting to an elderly church volunteer who was looking after the haberdashery items for sale. She commented on the kimono jacket I was wearing, and when I told her I made it myself, she showed me all the crochet scarves that she had made. The details and intricate patterns on the pretty little scarves were amazing. She had worked at the Bonds factory in the northern beaches before it had closed down, and after that she had worked at many other factories, doing button hole making, zipper attachments, etc. “You name it, I’ve made it”, she said. It made me a bit sad that we are quickly losing this sort of amazing skill and talent in our generation.
The lady kindly helped me sort through a big box of old sewing patterns, telling me all these styles were coming back to fashion; she’s seen them worn by the Duchess of Cambridge. So cute. Eventually, I found a pattern on how to make collars and cuffs. Very fitting, as I had only recently blogged about my plans for making detachable collars. I also found beautiful wooden buttons, cut out of Tasmanian golden wattle. So Australiana – I love it. Another 20 minutes of digging later, I discovered some black suiting fabric and a light white knit fabric under a mountain of tablecloths. Total spend for the morning? Two dollars!