Tibor Reich for Concorde

Vintage Tibor Reich fabric cushions | H is for Home

We’ve long been fans of the designs of Tibor Reich and were lucky enough to catch a retrospective of his work at the Whitworth Art Gallery in Manchester last year.

Pair of cushions made from vintage Tibor Reich fabrics | H is for Home

A few weeks ago, we bought some cushion covers from a well-known online auction site. It was the original fabric used to make them that caught our eye. The seller photographed the covers alongside a cut-out from a magazine article that showed that the fabric was designed by Tibor Reich and had been used on Concorde.

We couldn’t find any images of the actual interior of Concorde showing this pattern. However we did find this reference:

One of the commercial highlights for Tibor Ltd. in the 1960s was a commission to design the first sets of upholstery and curtain fabrics for the Anglo-French Concorde (prior to trial flights in 1968) [Cabinet Maker and Retail Furnisher, October, 1966]. Five Jacquard upholstery cloths, in natural and gold were used as curtaining fabric along with two carpet designs [Cabinet Maker and Furnisher, October, 1965].
via “Patterns of Culture: Tibor Reich: A Life of Colour and Weave“, by K. Powers and M. A. Hann (with a contribution by J. A. Cousens).

Vintage Tibor Reich fabric with cut out from a 1960s issue of Cabinet Maker and Retail Furnisher, October

It’s clearly the same fabric as shown in the article, we just haven’t been able to find that ‘in situ’ image as yet. We’d love to see one. As well as being used on the plane, these fabrics were probably also used in the airport lounge for Concorde passengers. Someone’s probably got a lovely colour holiday snap with them pictured sipping champagne, reclining on seats covered in it!

Cushion made with vintage Tibor Reich fabric on a leather club chair | H is for Home

We were delighted with the fabric when it arrived. Beautiful colours and striking design – and unused, mint condition too. The cushions were very nicely made, so as cushions they will stay. With Justin’s chair addiction, we’ve got endless chairs to put them on!

Cushion made with vintage Tibor Reich fabric on a leather club chair | H is for Home

We thought they were a very good price too, considering the high profile designer and prestigious client… and a bargain never hurts!

Home Etc badge

Vintage tea towels

'Vintage tea towels' blog post banner

collection of vintage tea towels

We bought a box of mixed textiles at auction last week which included some lovely vintage tea towels. Great looking – and full of useful facts & figures too! Here are a few of our favourites.

vintage metric tea towel

The ‘Housewives Guide to British Metric Measure’ was aimed at helping us Brits through the process of change from imperial to metric measures – a process which started here in the 1960s and is still ongoing for most people! We certainly use a combination of imperial & metric measures in this household. Metres, feet, inches, miles, kilometres, kilos, pounds, pints, litres, Fahrenheit & Centigrade all jumbled up together – we just grab whichever seems to suit!

detail of vintage metric tea towel

Fabulous decoration and ideal ready reckoner this one!

detail of vintage metric tea towel

This next tea towel was issued by the British Diabetic Association.

vintage diet tea towel

A colourful textile, featuring foodstuffs with recommended daily allowances.

detail of vintage diet tea towel

Various letters & symbols indicate calories, carbohydrate, fat & protein content.

detail of vintage diet tea towel

The next tea towel concentrates solely on calorific values for those watching their weight.

vintage calorie values tea towel

It’s a very striking design and would look great framed.

detail of vintage calorie values tea towel

And the value for sweets? “too many calories” it says. We’ll be the judge of that!!

detail of vintage calorie values tea towel

This last tea towel is fabulous – a food guide to London restaurants dating from the 1950s or 60s. When did London last have 4-digit telephone numbers?

vintage vintage London restaurants tea towel

Some of the restaurants still survive to this day.

detail of vintage vintage London restaurants tea towel

We love the ‘specialities’ – from ‘midnight cabaret’ to ‘chicken paprika’!

detail of vintage vintage London restaurants tea towel

Drop us a line if you’re interested in any of the tea towels. They’re priced at £20 – £30.

Tammis Keefe teatowel

"Tammis Keefe teatowel" blog post banner

detail from a Tammis Keefe teatowel with red & white hearts and the words, "Home is where the heart is"

We’ve long admired the designs of Tammis Keefe. No relation to Justin, although you may not have to go too far back in history before their family trees meet. It’s interesting that her middle name was Thomas – and her father’s name was Thomas – and that she adopted the name Tammis which we think is a Gaelic form of Thomas. Justin has the same marked tradition of Thomas Keefes & O’Keeffes in his family. Father, grandfather, great grandfather, great-great grandfather – stretching back to the 18th century.

Tammis Keefe teatowel with red & white hearts and the words, "Home is where the heart is"

Anyway, we’ve promised ourselves an example of Tammis Keefe’s work many times and it arrived recently. It’s very dangerous buying that first piece as it can be the start of a mad collecting frenzy. We’ve resisted for years, but this gorgeous “Home is where the heart is” tea towel was just the final straw! We had this piece shipped over from the States where most examples are to be found. It will look great when framed and be perfect for the kitchen wall – combining a vintage touch with warm sentiments. There’s also something very Christmassy about it so we might even save it for festive season appearances.

Tammis Keefe teatowel showing her signature

Tammis Keefe was born Margaret Thomas Keefe in Los Angeles in 1913 and, after initially studying maths at college, transferred to the Chouinard Institute of Art where she studied painting. Her early career was spent at Disney Studios – she then moved onto the influential Arts & Architecture periodical. Then followed a spell in the studio of textile artist Dorothy Liebes who was well known for developing the work of young designers. This was obviously a significant move with regards to her future career.

detail from a Tammis Keefe teatowel with red & white hearts

Her work from the 40s & 50s is very distinctive – full of wonderful graphic detail, colour, charm & wit. It was used on a great variety of home furnishing textiles, tea towels, place mats, napkins & handkerchiefs. Also clothing, crockery & glassware, wallpaper, stationery, product advertising & packaging. Sadly, she died relatively young in 1961, but has left such a wonderful legacy. And we’re pretty sure that this won’t be the last piece we acquire!

Here’s a list of further reading and examples of her work:

NWFestival | Making it Fun | Tammis Keefe | Flickr group

Material World

"Material World" blog post banner

large number of vintage fabric bolts

What a boot full of booty!!

large number of vintage fabric bolts stuffed into the boot of our car

Unbelievably, we’ve just acquired approximately 40 bolts of vintage fabric.

large number of vintage fabric bolts

It all dates from the 1950s & 60s.

bolt of vintage David Whitehead fabric still wrapped in its original brown paper and address label

Most of them are unused – some still have their original labels & packaging. It’s so rare to discover original vintage textiles like this – especially in this quantity.

large number of vintage fabric bolts

A friend of ours works in the textiles. He has a friend, also in the trade, who was clearing one of his storage areas. Lurking at the back was all this fabric – bought by his father, which had lain there untouched for 50 or 60 years. A real fabric collectors dream!!

large number of vintage fabric bolts

Each bolt measures between 30 & 60 yards in length.

large number of vintage fabric bolts

There are some fantastic patterns.

large number of vintage fabric bolts

…period designs featuring flowers & fruit, geometric shapes and even space galaxies.

group of vintage monotone fabric bolts

Some bold & bright, some monochrome.

close up of vintage monotone fabric bolt

We’ve only had the fabric for a few days and haven’t started identifying designers as yet – having said that there are lots still with original David Whitehead labels…

close up of vintage David Whitehead fabric with rose pattern

…a prominent textile manufacturer from this period.

close up of vintage David Whitehead fabric with leaf pattern

We’re pretty sure that a good number of the ones without labels intact are by them too.

close up of vintage fabric with pink and grey stripe and embossed flower pattern

Here’s a quartet of David Whitehead adverts – we often come across them in vintage magazines from the 50s & 60s.

four vintage magazine adverts for Davis Whitehead fabrics

We’ll be putting the fabric up for sale in the coming weeks. Some we’ll sell as long fabric lengths in our Picture House Antiques pitch – some we’ll sell by the metre in our webshop and Etsy & Folksy and eBay outlets.

close up of vintage David Whitehead fabric with fruit pattern

A once in a lifetime find… many thanks to Shaun!!!

Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010 blog post banner

collection of postcards and business cards from artists & craftspeople exhibiting at Great Norther Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We spent Friday evening at the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair in Spinningfields, Manchester city centre…

handmade enamelled copper nature-inspired figures by Janine Partington who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

…and a very pleasant evening it was too.

colourful handbuilt functional ceramics with hand cut stencil decoration by Ken Eardley who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

The fair expanded into two pavilions for its second year.

colourful handmade screen prints, etchings and lino cuts by Ruth Green who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

A great mix of ceramics, glass, metal, paper and textiles… from both new exhibitors and favourites from last year.

collection of slipware pottery by Hannah McAndrew who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

There were so many great stalls – we’ve just selected a few that caught our eye.

We’ll start with Jane Blease Design.

handmade bent plywood and threaded cotton lamps and artwork by Jane Blease Design who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

She uses plywood and threaded cotton to produce artworks, light shades and jewellery.

detail from a handmade bent plywood and threaded cotton lampshade by Jane Blease Design who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

It’s striking from a distance, then fascinating in the detail.

handmade bent plywood and threaded cotton jewellery by Jane Blease Design who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

A piece of Jane’s work was temptation number one and we’d only been in the marquee for a few seconds!

Moving along to &made,

cushions and cacti-shaped pin cushion from &made who exhibited at Great Norther Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Andrea Lord produces lovely hand-sewn pieces…

cushions and cacti-shaped pin cushion from &made who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

…her items simply & beautifully displayed.

cushions and cacti-shaped pin cushion from &made who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010cushions and cacti-shaped pin cushion from &made who exhibited at Great Norther Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Cushions, wall hangings and rows of gorgeous cacti pin cushions in their little terracotta pots!

cushion and cacti-shaped pin cushions in terra cotta pots from &made who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We mentioned Derek Wilson Ceramics in our post from last year’s fair.

handthrown functional porcelain tableware by Derek Wilson who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

His stand, filled with his beautiful and delicate porcelain, stopped us in our tracks again…

handthrown porcelain jug by Derek Wilson who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

….elegant, understated simplicity.

Ruth Green Design has proved another favourite with our blog readers – and a shot of her prints always rides high in our Flickr photo viewings.

colourful handmade screen prints, etchings and lino cuts by Ruth Green who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We lingered at her stall for a good while.

colourful handmade screen prints, etchings and lino cuts by Ruth Green who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Her prints, sold in limited edition runs, look fabulous hanging all together.

colourful handmade screen prints, etchings and lino cuts by Ruth Green who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

The Pear Tree, one of her  new designs, was another strong temptation!

You can always guarantee a striking display from Hannah Nunn’s Radiance Lighting

handmade laminated papercut lampshades by Hannah Nunn who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

…the warm cosy glow of her beautiful, nature-inspired shades…

handmade laminated papercut lampshades by Hannah Nunn who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

…the designs hand cut from paper and then laminated.

Adelle having a pit stop in the bar area at the Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Phew… time for a pit stop… a sit down with a glass of wine!!

First-time exhibitor Ken Eardley made the long drive up from Brighton where he has his studio.

colourful handbuilt functional ceramics with hand cut stencil decoration by Ken Eardley who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

His range of striking pottery with stylised trees, flowers & leaves was a real show stopper.

colourful handbuilt functional ceramics with hand cut stencil decoration by Ken Eardley who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Functional and beautiful – always a winning combination.

colourful handbuilt functional ceramics with hand cut stencil decoration by Ken Eardley who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

No doubt his work will be starring in lots of interiors magazines in the future!

The natural landscape strongly inspires & influences the work of enameller Janine Partington.

handmade enamelled copper nature-inspired figures by Janine Partington who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Trees, flowers, seed heads, birds and animals.

handmade enamelled copper nature-inspired figures by Janine Partington who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

She produces enamel panels, small sculptures and jewellery.

handmade enamelled copper nature-inspired jewellery by Janine Partington who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We’d love to stroll through a magical forest of her making.

Kent-based Maxine Sutton plays with imagery of familiar everyday domestic objects and the natural world.

hand-embroidered and printed textiles by Maxine Sutton who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Incorporating them into embroidered and printed textiles to produce a range of interior products.

hand-embroidered and printed textiles by Maxine Sutton who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

There were lots of eye-catching items on her stand.

hand-embroidered and printed textiles by Maxine Sutton who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We’ve got a standard lamp that would happily accommodate one of her large shades… and we just loved the coffee pot/cafetiere cosies with their Scandinavian feel.

The work of Sarra Kate is bright and effervescent – just like Sarra Kate herself!

colourful textile banners, cushions and greetings cards made from original collages by Sarra Kate who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

Her stand called out to us from a long way away.

detail from a colourful textile banner made from original collage by Sarra Kate who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

She starts her pieces by making colourful collages which are then laser printed onto textiles and paper…

colourful  greeting cards made from original collages by Sarra Kate who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

…which go into making wall hangings, cushions and cards.

Last, but certainly not least, we have Hannah McAndrew, another of our favourites from last year.

collection of slipware pottery by Hannah McAndrew who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

This is where we finally gave into temptation.

collection of slipware pottery by Hannah McAndrew who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We admired her stand last year, filled with its mediæval-inspired slipware pottery.

collection of slipware pottery by Hannah McAndrew who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

This year we just had to take a few of her pieces home!

detail from slipware pottery jug by Hannah McAndrew who exhibited at Great Northern Contemporary Craft Fair 2010

We’ve concentrated on featuring homes and interiors products, but there was also lots & lots of fantastic fashion & jewellery – and if we featured any more this post would turn into a novel!

All the makers will be packing up and making their way home as we write this… so be sure to put the fair in your diary for next year!

Nada

"Nada" blog banner

detail from a vintage cloth pattern designed by Belinda Lyons of a doll called "Nada", an Algerian girl

It’s funny how things happen…

detail from a vintage cloth pattern designed by Belinda Lyons of a doll called "Nada", an Algerian girl

…we were looking at these vintage doll patterns for Oxfam on the internet last night… then we walked into a local antiques centre today and found one!

vintage cloth pattern designed by Belinda Lyons of a doll called "Nada", an Algerian girl

This one’s called Nada and features a young Algerian girl in traditional dress. Here’s another similar one of her patterns that we found featured recently on the Pass the Pattern blog.

detail from a vintage cloth pattern designed by Belinda Lyons of a doll called "Nada", an Algerian girl

They were designed by illustrator, Belinda Lyon. There isn’t a great deal of information about her on the internet. We know she was working in the 1960s/70s – designing fab stuff – including textiles, books etc  She illustrated a number of books by Janet Barber.

vintage psychedelic teatowel of a camel designed by Belinda Lyon

In addition to the sewing patterns, she also produced a series of tea towels for Oxfam – this is her psychedelic camel!

We’ve just set up a Flickr group to share images of her work, so if you have any, please share!

Enhanced by Zemanta