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A Really Big Adventure – Visiting the BBC’s Antiques Roadshow at Historic Baddesley Clinton

A Really Big Adventure – Visiting the BBC’s Antiques Roadshow at Historic Baddesley Clinton

One of my favourite television programmes is “The Antiques Roadshow” made by the BBC.

Have you seen it?  It is possible to go and take precious items of all sizes to be valued by antiques experts.  Earlier in the year, before my Birthday and writing posts on Gloriously Vintage, I checked out their website and saw to my delight they were coming to film a programme at Baddesley Clinton, a beautiful old moated manor house not too far from my home.

 

“I would love to go”, was my first thought and “what could I take” was my second.

 

Welcome dear Reader to this post about a really big adventure for us – going to the Antiques Roadshow with some of my Corde Handbag collection and also some lovely named 1950’s costume jewellery.

 

History of the Antiques Roadshow

I am not sure if you have seen the show where you are, dear Reader, but in the UK the Programme is rather an institution!  It started in 1979 and has developed, with different presenters over the years into the very entertaining show we enjoy today.  It is usually shown on a Sunday evening at about 7.30 pm – 8.00 pm and is on for an hour.

I watch regularly and am often amazed by the wonderful items and stories they feature.  Indeed I have been a fan almost half of my life!  The idea is a collection of antiques experts gather together and members of the public take items to be valued.  Occasionally stories come up of finds from a car boot sale of an item bought for 50p, that turns out to be made by Faberge and worth thousands of pounds!

The venues have gradually become more adventurous and interesting as the programme has moved from inside places to outside often visiting historic houses.  Programmes are often hosted by properties belonging to the National Trust in the UK.  So there is an opportunity to see a lovely location and the interesting programme together.  It adds up to a very successful format that is popular and always stimulating.

 

The Current Presenter

Fiona Bruce is the current presenter.  Do have a look at this link to see her and find out more about her.  She is always very professional and looks as though she is having a marvellous time!  Her natural enthusiasm for the antiques and the whole ethos of the show is a big part of its success, I think.

We saw her – not too close up -and were totally charmed.

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Fiona Bruce has her back to us and is wearing very clean, new looking trainers!

 

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Do you see those wooden banded trunks?  I used to keep my dressing up clothes in one like that in our Third Bedroom, when I was a child.

 

The Experts

This link will tell you about the experts that participate in the programme.  As it is a very big team it is just luck who is there on the day.  All the experts are familiar as they are beamed into our homes regularly over so many years.  New experts are added to the team, but some have been like old friends, on the programme for many, many years.

 

Decision To Go

We did some juggling with our work commitments to be free on Wednesday 8th June.  Once we had made a firm decision it was a case of getting organized and sorting out a picnic too.  We took the precaution of buying a second large umbrella so there would be one each, should the weather be inclement.

 

I decided to take 7 of my Corde Handbags and some 1950’s named jewellery for valuation and advice.

 

I contacted the programme and submitted my story of the first Corde Handbag and said what I wanted to bring, on line.  A phone call to the production team confirmed my application had gone in.  Sadly, they did not select me to be filmed and on television, but I was able to see an expert who gave me some excellent advice to help me in my future collecting.  As it is necessary to queue I wanted to present my handbags and if possible to present the 1950’s jewellery as well but only if we did not have to join a second long queue!

Have you ever been to the Antiques Roadshow somewhere?  Do tell me in the comments.

 

What to Wear?

Well dear Reader, you can imagine my third thought was

“WHAT am I going to WEAR?”

 

I did a lot of thinking and styling in my head as I narrowed down just what to wear on the day.  Comfortable shoes were a must that would be fine walking on grass.  I wanted to use my cream handbag and Fox’s Umbrella too.

 

This is the outfit I styled.

outfit

CD scarf

Bags and Fox's umbrella

Trifari Earings and bracelet

Outfit Details

Cream twist front flat shoes   New Look

Light Green Viyella Pleated Skirt   Oxfam on Line

Soft Peach Square neck top    Kettlewell Colours

Christian Dior Scarf with green and peach in the pattern   Bought recently at an Antiques Fair (The hand rolled edge is on the top, CD and Hermes do this, I have learnt)

1950’s Cream framed Handbag   Bought at a Vintage Fair

Cream and gold “everything” Bag   Oxfam on Line (a bargain as it was £6!)

Fox’s Umbrella/Parasol (used here as a parasol)

3 Rows of pearls

Trifari Pearl and gold earings

Trifari pearl and gold bracelet

Napier twist bracelet

Ted Baker Sunglasses

 

 

The Experience

Dear Reader, it was a great experience!  Firstly it is very rare for us to have a Wednesday off together, so that made it special to start with.  The sun was out; it was warm so I did not take a jacket.

 

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Here I am, at my dressing table putting the finishing touches to my Lipstick blend:

Bobbi Brown lip pencil Red + Revlon Red + Bobbi Brown Parisian Red

 

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Baddesley Clinton is approached from the road by a long drive.  We made our way slowly and were waved into the overflow carpark by a NT Steward wearing a high visablility jacket.  Another steward then waved us to a parking space.  We had arrived.

 

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I am standing at the entrance to Baddesley Clinton, by the gateway into a courtyard where the Tea Rooms are, the shop and also an area where there are plants for sale.  The three people in front had come from Australia to be there.

 

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The queue very slowly progressed through this courtyard, passing this sculpture that was for sale for £150.  I like it and thought it would look interesting in our garden!

 

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So glad to have to use my parasol!

The queue moved on to the grassy area just in front of the house.  That is a BBC van behind me.

 

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There were a lot of BBC vehicles and equipment of all sizes around.

 

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This 1930’s bus was something to go and see.  The camera on the long arm was impressive and the two men had to man handle it around the gardens filming the back ground shots.  We may be in some of them.  Have a look at the fence.  This fence is a good example of the fencing that was used to surround an estate in the past.  It has weathered to a silvery grey and blends into the fields beyond very well.

 

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Can you see the red chairs? They are antiques Roadshow chairs.  There were small groups of these chairs all over the gardens.  A welcome opportunity to sit down!

 

At the Reception desk we were given a blue ticket, for Miscallaneous Objects and directed to the Walled Garden to queue again!

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I am smiling for both of us!

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Still waiting, dear Reader, in the Walled Garden.

 

The Comment and Advice from Lisa Lloyd

The expert we were able to see was Lisa Lloyd who specialises in all things vintage including jewellery.

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She praised my collection and valued them on average at £100 each.  Her advice was to always buy in tip top condition and to go on collecting them!  You can read the story of finding my first Corde handbag here.

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I love these bags and use them – especially for dinner dates and special occasions.  It was marvellous to talk to Lisa about these darling handbags.

 

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As we had waited a long time to see her she looked at my jewellery too!  So we only queued once.  I took my Pennino jewellery and the Schreiner demi parure, a 1930’s unmarked brooch and earings I wear as a “Set” and a bird brooch that is rather a mystery.

 

dayset with sphinx brooch

My brooch is marked Sphinx but I have found on the internet the same bird brooch by Marcel Boucher with different stones marked Boucher.  Lisa confirmed that Sphinx did not make for Boucher but it is a copy of the bird design, maybe made from the same mould.  She also told me my brooch was almost too good to be by Sphinx as it is a higher quality than a lot of their pieces.

 

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Lisa is looking at the Pennino jewellery here and I am holding the Hobe Bracelet that I had for my 60th Birthday from Glenn.  These pieces are so precious to me.

 

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It was wonderful to have this time with Lisa who confirmed I had pieces in good condition and that I had not paid too much for them!

 

I now have a Gloriously Vintage You Tube Channel.  This is our first video – they will get better!

 

Lisa told me about Alfies in Marylebone , London and encouraged me to go and see what I could find there.  Oh yes, dear Reader, another adventure …?

 

 

Joining the National Trust

We have rejoined the National Trust at Baddesley Clinton and are so happy about this.  We had been members for many years up to 2009 when we just did not have time to visit any properties due to work commitments and new responsibilities following the death of my father.

I am looking forward to sharing with you dear Reader, some wonderful places near my home through the summer months!

 

Picnic

The day ended with a tasty picnic beside our car, before setting off for home.  Dear Reader, do you agree that food tastes much nicer when eaten out of doors?  I do not know why, but it does!  The raindrops started as we were eating our fruit, so we packed everything away and left, both agreeing it had been a great day.

 

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Go Again!

In September The Antiques Roadshow is in Cornwall at a lovely NT House called Trelissick.  It would be lovely to go again.  Cornwall is a very beautiful part of England in the South West. That would be another adventure to look forward to.

 

This passion for collecting is making life so sweet dear Reader, and sharing these wonderful times with you on Gloriously Vintage is making being 60 years old an exciting decade, so far with so much to learn.  Thank you for coming by today, do drop me a word or two in the comments.

 

As always a big thank you to Glenn for coming with me and taking the photographs.

It started with a …Corde Handbag

Five years ago I decided that I wanted to make my everyday style much more vintage. I have always been very interested in the Hollywood Film Stars of the 1940’s and 1950’s, loving the glamorous hair and makeup and wonderful clothes. The fashions of the 1930’s, 1940’s and 1950’s spanned the style of my maternal Grandmother and Mother that I remember so fondly from mychildhood, have also been a strong influence .

I changed my hair colour to blond at the age of 50 and made Marilyn Monroe my style icon. This meant a return to a rollered hairstyle, which has evolved into the hairstyle you will see in my posts. At 60, it is now ash blond, thick, naturally curly and is my trademark. So to complement the classic clothes I like to wear I needed to mix in a number of things to get the vintage look. Firstly, three rows of pearls and secondly, a framed traditional handbag. These two items added to court shoes with a stiletto heel were enough to get started .

I have always adored looking for things to wear in charity shops. In my village at that time there were two. I went in my favourite one lunchtime, with a short time to look round and see if there was anything of interest. High up on a display was a framed handbag that looked as though it was from the 1950’s. I asked to see it.

It felt old, like nothing I had seen before and the tactile nature of the material was appealing and so different . I estimated that it was 1950.’s and I already liked it a lot.

The clasp was a rectangle of what looked like plastic and I opened it to find inside a label that I just knew made it very special.

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I can still remember the thrill of finding that handbag and the overwhelming desire to own it.

It was marked £5. As it was old, I offered to pay more but was told it is £5, that is the price. I could not wait to get home and see if it would go with a brown pencil skirt and “Ladies Pride” tweed jacket I loved to wear.

That evening I started to research on the internet to find out about corde handbags and to understand this new treasure . As I sat at the computer it felt like an adventure was beginning, something was happening that would change everything!

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I found out that the bag was from the 1940’s and was made of a fabric called Corde. Gimp strands of silk or wool were wound round a wire or cord core and stitched to a backing fabric in various geometric patterns. They were made in the 1940’s because due to a leather shortage other fabrics to make handbags had to be found or created. English corde bags are usually framed and American ones can be a miriad of shapes and designs often with zips and pulls made out of an early plastic called Lucite. They were made in brown, black , blue and taupe.

My bag was “Made in England”, framed and had a domed rectangle of Lucite at the clasp. Reading “Style Me Vintage – Accessories” by Naomi Thompson and Liz Tregenza, I found out that corde handbags were advertised as “dressy” and “hardwearing” in the 1940’s.

Mine was in remarkably good condition given its age and had clearly been a best handbag , lovingly looked after and brought out for special occasions. I felt a strong connection to my favourite era the 1950’s.

To find the pearls…well that took a little longer and is another story. Finding the Corde handbag and finding out about them made me want to find another one, perhaps in a different colour…This is how collecting starts.

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