The really cool thing about buying vintage* House Candy is that each piece comes with its own unique story. More often than not, this is House Candy that finds you, rather than you finding it, like this pretty yellow jug I bought on one of those idyllic Sunday afternoon family canal walks.
My closest friends know all about "the walk". It's the one my kids really didn't want to go on, it being the middle of the Euros and all. The one, despite the uneven ground and recent heavy rains, they insisted on bringing scooters on. The one that involved me threatening to leave home if I had to ease the boys' boredom by playing one more game of Guess Which Footballer I'm Thinking Of... That walk.
But whilst out on "The Walk", at round about the time my dog produced a sloppy poo and just before my husband threatened to throw the Godforsaken scooters in the canal, we came across a crazy canal boat dweller who had decided to have a clear out.
She had set up a stall outside the canal boat a bit like the ones my sister and I created outside our house in the school summer holidays. It was a table laden with unwashed tat from the houseboat.
Among the crazy lady's treasures were a broken sound system, some scenic coasters and a dirty, ink stained jug previously used to hold biros. Everything was 50p because she "needed to make some space before the boat was advertised on Airbnb".. True fact.
Now it was either a canny sales tactic or a tragic sob story, but upon showing an interest in her wares (and therefore avoiding another round of guess the frikkin' footballer) Crazy Lady told me how loathed she was to part with any of these precious artefacts; particularly the lovely yellow, slightly chipped, very ink stained, old jug-come-pen-pot that I was now holding in my hand.
The sight of a shiny 50p did nothing to ease the pain - quite the opposite in fact. Instead my keenness to pay appeared to evoke more happy memories of blissful pen storage and happy letter writing on the lovely old (but overcrowded) house boat. It wasn't until my husband suggested she keep the change from a one pound coin and I promised to give the the jug a loving family home, that the crazy house boat lady agreed to a sale and the yellow jug finally got new owners.
I wasn't lying to the crazy house boat lady. I do, actually, love this jug almost as much as she did. I love it because it is the most fabulous shade of vintage yellow that is difficult to replicate on new ceramics.
I love it because a handful of cheap supermarket flowers and garden picked blooms look amazing just plonked straight in it without all that faff of fancy arranging.
And most of all I love it because it reminds me of The Walk that started badly and ended beautifully. Ending - since I know you are so desperate to hear the moral of this story - with us all:
a) Realising that there are actual human beings out there who haven't even heard of the Euros and know nothing of the pressures of rushing through quality family time in order to get back in front of the telly before kick off.
b) Feeling blessed that we don't live all alone, going slightly crazy on the Leeds to Liverpool canal. But have each other for family walks (however painful they may be) and endless games of Guess the Footballer.
c) Understanding that House Candy doesn't have to be about full height Crittal windows or reclaimed Moroccan tiles. Sometimes it can be about a 30 year old chipped yellow milk jug, which during its time has proven to be equally good at holding pens and peonies.
Happy weekend all, hope you get to enjoy some family time and perhaps a little bit of House Candy.
*vintage meaning stuff off of someone else