3/05/2011

Books and Bargains.


click on the images for a closer look.


The photographs show Knutsford, a Cheshire market town close by where we go to for the odd treat. There are good places to eat, cobbled streets packed with galleries and best of all the charity shops. “Posh” people it seems, throw away the best stuff! Of course I had to buy something when we visited last week, I found a lovely old wooden blotter for £3.50 and a vintage toast rack for 50 pence which I just had to have.

We ate lunch inside a quirky little museum which houses a collection of Penny Farthing bicycles and later explored some of the buildings associated with Elizabeth Gaskell. The novelist lived here and immortalized the town in her novel Cranford. Some of the buildings have an Italianate feel to them especially the Gaskell Memorial tower, which would not be out of place in San Gimignano!




We had World Book week a few days ago so I thought it would be fitting to share with you some of my recent acquisitions. I love a bargain, don’t you? I found this gorgeous re-print of Walter Crane’s “Here we go round the Mulberry Bush” for 99p and a very tatty copy of “Mrs Molesworth’s Four Winds Farm” for less than a fiver. I shan’t tell you what I paid for the “Baby’s Opera” but I am going to attend a book restoration workshop so I have told myself that this will be an investment. All of these titles were illustrated by my hero Walter Crane; my heart still skips a beat when I come across his work.

The other two books I bought in London, “Engraved Gardens” published by Primrose Hill Press Ltd is a beautiful book about wood engraving’s inspired by gardens. I came across “Twelve Poems about Birds” by Candlestick Press in The British Library bookshop; I bought it to give a friend on her birthday so I am hoping she won’t be reading this!


28 comments:

  1. what finds! my mum was evacuated to knutsford during the war and speaks with findness of her times there. i remember travelling through it on our way from home in altrincham to visit grandparents in crewe. the little villages of upper and lower peover figure largely in my rememberings of an england that has long passed. steven

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  2. The garden book looks lovely and I would love to see inside. Funnily enough I popped into Knutsford on the way back from Rode Hall the other day. It smells a bit of money but it is pretty. The auction rooms are good fun. x

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  3. I'm originally from up north and haven't been to Knutsford in years; had forgotten what a lovely place it is, in fact how lovely that whole part of the world is. Thankyou for a lovely reminder.

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  4. Brilliant finds!!! My heart skips a beat with Walter Crane's work as well. He truly is one of my art heroes! Thanks for sharing your treasures.
    xo,
    Heather

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  5. Knutsford sounds lovely! It might even tempt me up North again one day...

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  6. What treasures you found!!
    Those old books are simply gorgeous. And what a lucky friend to receive one for her birthday!!

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  7. What wonderful finds! I adore Walter Crane's work as well. Thanks for sharing...

    ~ Carolee

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  8. Valerie, I know that you do value such opportunities, but hope that my leaning in with blossoming green envy will encourage you to give even more value to visits like yours to Knutsford.

    Yes, my huge cosmopolitan city offers many things, but there are so many treasures that could never,never be found here.

    xo

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  9. Your books are things of great beauty! We haven't been to Knutsford for ages. I remember having coffee and scones in the penny farthing museum - I seem to recall that they were around the walls and up in the ceiling then. I love how close the entrance to Tatton Park is to the town:)

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  10. Love Knutsford and what great books you found.

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  11. I love books with embossed covers and have collected quite a few over the years...Love a good bargain as well but if you have to spend a bit more, that's fine too...I once bought a book for the high price of $8 and later learned that it was worth $400! 'The Baby Opera' looks fantastic!

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  12. Would so love to see more of Engraved Gardens. I would love to own that title. x

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  13. Hi Valerie, how are you? What a lovely outing - the cover of engraved gardens is beautiful, terrific work. Have a good week, Lesley. x

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  14. Terrifc finds - heavenly Walter Crane. Avril has the Baby's Bouquet with the beautiful endpapers. His line was - is - brilliant.

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  15. treasures indeed
    and your time there sounds wonderful
    did you write the poems for the book? Looks wonderful.

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  16. Beautiful finds. We are lucky to have so many places to visit. Like you I love hunting in old book shops, secondhand or charity shops and I know that feeling when your heart skips a beat as you spot a treasure.

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  17. Oh ,Cranford, how I love it!
    These are indeed treasure you have acquired, every one of them.
    A book restoration class is something I would love to take, I have so many poor, tattered books in need of TLC. You find the most interesting classes!

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  18. thank you for sharing the lovely photos. This town will go on my list of "someday when I visit England" list. The books look lovely.

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  19. I love your delightful booky finds. Such treasures. I have a soft spot for vintage books and have far too many, I'm afraid.

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  20. Valerie, you did good! And what a fun day it sounds like you had!
    Hugs, Diane

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  21. So jealous of your amazing book finds and fun outing to Knutsford/Cranford! I hope I can visit someday!

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  22. Ooh, what fabulous old books! And Kutsford looks super, we're sadly lacking in those lovely old places in Brizzle...

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  23. I loove old books, those are certainly treasures you have found! Nothing better than a bargain too. I love Knutsford, it has a lovely feel to the place, we used to live very close to there & i often cycled through on my bike, with one or other of my children perched behind. Another favourite place was alderley edge!

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  24. Now you have gone and made me very jealous Valerie. I love the 12 poems about birds book and the Engraved Gardens looks gorgeous. Lucky you finding so many gems. I couldn't agree more about charity shops. I love them to bits. They are like treasure chests where you dip into them and never know what you are going to come up with. Knutsford sounds well worth a visit.

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  25. The Real Mother Goose book, written and illustrated by Blanche Fish Wright, was the book that I read to my children. Fern Bissel Peat illustrated the Mother Goose Book from my childhood, and I have both books ready to read from when my grandchilfren arrive. Love the Peat illustrations a lot!!!

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  26. I deeply thank for your warm heart and thoughts...

    From Japan, ruma

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  27. Knutsford sounds wonderful. I'm thinking about going to England in August and posts like this help make me more sure that this is what I need to do. Lovely book finds. I too love Walter Crane, and 'The Baby's Opera' is a treasure.

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