The Wonder Emporium and other tales..

Happy Sunday lovely readers.

I could not be happier about it being a bank holiday tomorrow. It's been a long time since I had a Monday off at home, sometimes all you need is a quiet Monday at home, a chance to enjoy the feeling of not having to kiss goodbye to the weekend and leave your bed at an ungodly hour. It certainly isn't my most favourite thing. Bank holidays however, are definitely a favourite thing. Especially this one. This one has been just a little bit wonderful.

Yesterday I begged my housemate to drive us to the 'Fleetville Vintage Emporium' in St Albans. I had read about it on both Gem and Jewel's blog and was dying to go and being quite close by it seemed like the right time. I have been hunting for a dresser for my kitchen for almost a year. I have been making do with some crappy shelves for a while now and I go dresser hunting every chance I get so I simply had to go..just in case! I convinced my housemate with promises of second hand books and off we went. I was in love the moment I walked through the door. The clutter, the bric a brac, my idea of absolute heavenly goodness. It reminded me of the country living fair that I attended earlier in the year except it was quiet, there was room to rummage and take some time and the best thing about this emporium is that I loved pretty much everything about it. Every 'unit' had something wonderful to look at even if I didn't want to buy it and it was all very much authentically vintage - extra wonderful. So I had a good old browse, taking in the beautiful things, the cluttered shelves, the buried treasures.

Unfortunately everything was still at London prices! Not very thrifty at all. But I did manage to find myself some lovely treasures. Did you expect anything different?

I found myself a beautiful Limoges plate. I didn't know it was French when I spotted it on a dresser, out of reach behind vintage tables crammed with breakables. I climbed through and around the obstructions to reach it from the shelves and that's when I saw the French stamp on the back. My heart fluttered a little. I love vintage china..I love French vintage china even more. This is only my second piece. I also found a beautiful cake slice and an embroidered vintage tray cloth.

As if one emporium isn't enough, there are two others behind Fleetville. The superbly named 'Scally dog Curiosity Shop' and 'Alley Cats Emporium'. Despite the sudden biblical rainfall we hot footed it to find more treasures. Sadly there was none to be found but what wonderful, treasure filled places! If you're ever in the area you must make time to have a mooch around all three. 

Before leaving we had some lunch in the little tea shop in the Fleetville Emporium. It was really quite charming.

And then after a rummage through some charity shops just down the road we headed off. I had planned to go to go on to another town to visit some junk shops I had heard about but time was getting on and the rain was getting heavier. 

Homeward we headed through thunder storms and sideways rain (In August? Really?) We'll just stop off at the furniture recycling shop just down the road from home, I thought. Just in case there is a dresser in there. My dresser hunt has really stepped up of late. I needed the storage space in the kitchen desperately. I had the money saved and at the ready and it was just a case of finding the perfect one. My wishlist grew and shrunk, my requirements changing every time I saw and fell in love with a different dresser. Prices went from the bargainous to the absolutely rediculous but Ebay and local bootsales just weren't coming up with an answer and I was getting fed up. 

So we stopped off at the charity shop and there it was. Out came the tape measure, perfect size. A big one. Excellently priced and right around the corner from home. I'm not very spontaneous really but that often leads to me deciding not to get something only to find that I regret it wholeheartedly a day or two later. I have made that mistake a dozen times and not learnt from it. I knew that if I walked away from this dresser I wouldn't be able to come back for another week and by then it would be in someone else's kitchen. So I had to have it. Of all the times to be spontaneous, this probably wasn't the time. Is was thrashing it down, I had no cash and the shop closed in 30 minutes. Ten minutes later I ran back into the shop, rain soaked and giddy and I handed over the small amount of cash. Now there was a problem. Would it fit in the car, maybe! But certainly not all at once. The base fitted quite nicely, thankfilly and with the boot slightly ajar and me clinging on to the wood for the short journey home,  we made it. Then my housemate headed back to the shop with 10 minutes to go before closing time, leaving me to clear space for the new dresser. Cue big dilemma and panicked phone call from housemate, the dresser top didn't fit. Too wide. So off I went, marching back to the shop in the downpour and thunder storms very aware that my housemate might get a parking ticket any minute. She didn't. So imagine me, a few minutes later, desperately trying to carry the damn thing home down side roads to avoid the stares and pointing of passers by as I struggled down the road. It was heavy, it was raining, I was bedraggled and by the way, I'm scared of thunderstorms! I found myself wondering why I had been so spontaneous, why this time wasn't the time I just said no. But it was ok, I stopped at the planned spot halfway home and a few minutes later my housemate had parked the car back at home and hurriedly returned to help me carry it and soon enough we were home and setting it up. Seeing it all come together was the perfect cure for the aching muscles. We later found out that housemate could have parked on one of the streets near to the shop and saved me from carrying it half way home..but shhh we don't like to think about that too much.

And here he is folks..

Absolutely perfect. It has made my whole month. (simple things and all that). The happy feeling has obviously spurred my productivity on- whether it be completing horrid bank holiday tasks that I have been putting off forever (mostly cutting a lot of ivy) or writing horribly long blog posts (sorry about that) I have ticked a lot off my long term to do list today, even things I didn't know were on there.

I hope your bank holiday weekend has been as superb as mine.

With love,



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  1. Beautiful Lexie, well worth all the trouble and getting drenched for. Enjoy!

    Claire xxx

  2. What a fabulous shop Lexie! Think I need tobe taking a little trip there! Looks like an aladdins cave of loveliness! Oh my and your dresser is GoRgEoUs! Why do I not find things like that in charity shops?!
    Victoria xx

  3. Lucky you! That dresser is gorgeous - what a find!
    Wish I lived nearer, that emporium looks wonderful. XX

  4. What a brilliant way to spend a day, the plate is so pretty, and the dresser, well... just beautiful. What a great find, well done for getting it home. x

  5. Oh Lexie - have already showed the love for the new dresser on Instagram but I have to say again how beautiful it looks filled with your vintage crockery treasures! :-) I bet you can't stop admiring her, I know I'd most likely be gaping at her wistfully each time I went into the kitchen :-)

    Jem xXx

    1. I try to make excuses to go in and stare at it lol! I'm in love!


  6. Oh Lexie it's perfect, I can see why you were spontaneous on this occasion, it was well worth it x x x x

  7. Thank you for the lovely mention of my blog! I'm glad we inspired you to visit and you found such treasures! I wish I was so lucky! It really was your day! I have been after a dresser for a long long time and have had the same issues as you - they are all so expensive! This one was made for you! Just perfect! Enjoy! xx

  8. The day you brought your dresser!!! yep I bet it will be a day to remember and with satisfaction.
    Well worth it too...and its looking splendid filled with all your china....yes sir....I'd be peeking in and looking at it too every sec LOL!

    great buys Lexie :-)



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