Win a kitsch print
While her school friends’ bedroom walls were plastered were pictures of Duran Duran in the 1980s, owner of The Picture Emporium Sam Hart “had a weird collection of Victorian grannies” on hers. Easy to see then, how over two decades later she can be found selling vintage postcards, prints and paintings in Hove’s Department Flea Market.
“I started a small collection of vintage postcards when I was about eight,” Sam recalls. “I think I was a bit of an odd child! Now the walls of my house are so full of mismatched art – a spaniel next to a vintage advert for blancmange – that I keep thinking ‘that’s it’, but then I always manage to squeeze just one more in.”
In Sam’s eyes ‘vintage’ refers to artwork produced before 1979, and her collection boasts everything from 1920s nudes through 1950s florals to iconic 1960s mass-produced prints.
Many of the items she sources are evocative of both her own and her customers’ childhoods. “I had a whole set of pictures of an artist who signed himself Strev when I was a kid. He did loads of little boys and girls with puppies and kittens and people often go a bit misty-eyed over them.”
Sam names other “wide-eyed child artists” such as Walter Keane, Dallas Simpson and Michel among the names she looks out for, as well as Vernon Ward, Tretchikoff and JH Lynch.
“I’m constantly on art alert – my children can’t bear it”, she laughs. “They always try to distract me when we’re walking past second-hand shops but I’m drawn like a homing pigeon. I also love getting out into the countryside to the Ford and Sayers Common boot fairs. If I get a bargain I pass that on to the customer.”
For charity and vintage shops, Sam says that you can’t beat Blatchington Road, where “even the carpet shop sells vintage handbags”. And it was among these shops that she chose to turn her hobby into a business, feeling at home in Department due to its “relaxed vibe and quirky stock”.
“The other stall holders are really welcoming and supportive and there’s also a really lovely teashop so customers can make a morning of it.”
Enter the competition
For your chance to win this 1960s print by French artist Soulet, one of many wide-eyed child prints available at The Picture Emporium, all you have to do is answer this simple question by leaving a comment below:
A famous commercial artwork made entirely of stamps is featured on The Picture Emporium blog. What is the title of the piece?
Deadline for entries is midnight Sunday 12 May and a winner will be chosen at random and contacted via the e-mail address used to leave their comment in the week commencing 13 May.
Everyone who buys a picture from The Picture Emporium (stall eight) at Department Flea Market in Hove will get a voucher for a free tea or coffee at the shop’s Tea and Toast café. Offer ends 31 May 2013.
This is a promotional post