Tuesday, 15 January 2019


We've all had a Batchelors Cup-a-Soup in our time, but now you can have one retro-style!!!
I've got these brilliant cups that date to the 1970s, that absolutely scream RETRO!!!

The company Batchelors started life in Sheffield in 1895, becoming known as purveyors of dried foods.
Their legendary dried soup in packets, the 'CUP-A-SOUP', were brought out in 1972, although they'd first had a go at it as far back as 1949.

My cups are probably items you'd send off for using tokens, or possibly used as promotional giveaways.
It's good to see the brand is still going strong, but I'm not that keen on their rather bland new logo and packaging, that's why it makes perfect sense to go retro!!
Mine have a perfectly simple and stylish design, with clear and legible type, and a cool block of colour underneath. 

They remind me of the Pantone colour mugs you find in slightly upmarket stationary shops.

They'd be great to use to sip your soup, but as the design is so cool, can just be displayed in the kitchen.

You'll be able to find them at my upcoming fairs at LOU LOU'S BOURNEMOUTH VINTAGE FAIR on Sunday 17th February and VINTAGE SOMERSET in Wells on Saturday 2nd March!

Sunday, 13 January 2019


I have here an exquisitely decorative item, with a brilliant name ...

You would just think that this was a dustpan and brush, but as befitting such a beautiful piece, its actual name is a crumb tray!!!

I love this name, and it does make perfect sense, as its real use was to sweep crumbs off a dinner table.
Which is far more dignified than scrabbling around on the floor sweeping up bits!

It does have an air of sophistication about it don't you think, with the very elegant shape of the brush, and the intricate flower designs and motifs. 
You could imagine a butler or maid discreetly brushing up the cake crumbs from the afternoon tea!


So how old is it?
Looking at the designs it could be 1900s, with its vague hint of Art Nouveau.
But, taking a closer look, it could also be Arts & Crafts, which could nudge it back a bit further into the 1890s or as early as the 1880s. 

So not only is this an unusual and ornate item, but is a genuine 'antique', in the real sense of the word.

Wednesday, 9 January 2019


Sounds like the name of an old ditty or funny limerick doesn't it?!

But it's actually the winner of a medal ...

I found this lovely item at the recent Giant Shepton Flea at Shepton Mallet in Somerset.
The fantastic Art Deco design of the medal caught my eye straight away, as did the striking image of the dancers.

The I.D.M.A. is the International Dancing Masters Association, which was created after a complicated set of mergers in 1930.
After yet more mergers in 1967, its now known as the International Dance Teachers Association.

As it was originally set up in 1930, it's tempting to think that they had a whole load of medals struck in the modern Deco style when they formed, and were still dishing them out in the early 60s as prizes!
It would have looked curiously outdated as a medal by 1961, but now of course looks sleek and stylish as a vintage item.

I don't think Mollie Mallett minded though as she was presented with her medal on 25th November 1961!!
It would originally have been held in a neat red box, embossed with I.D.M.A. in gold lettering, which has sadly been lost.

So who was our Mollie??

Unfortunately I don't know, but one reference did pop up online of someone on the Isle of Wight which fitted the time frame, so you never know.

Friday, 4 January 2019


Have chucked a big stash of the classic 1970s Commando comics into my unit at The Customs House at West Bay, Dorset.
So if you are a fan of these little gems, then lucky you!!

The comic first started in 1961 and is still going strong today, currently standing at Issue Number 5190. 
My bundle of comics will help you start a collection, but you might need an extra room to collect them all!

Also in my unit are other faves from the 70s, Hotspur and Wizard ...

... and not forgetting the one and only Beano!

Monday, 31 December 2018


Blimey, another year gone already??!!


2018 was a good year for my ArtPix endeavours, doing new fairs and markets all around the South West.
I've expanded my list of places to trade at to Shepton Mallet, Wells, Exeter, Yeovil, Wimborne, Dorchester, Bridport, Bournemouth and a few more, including the Tank Museum at Bovington!

I'm already looking to expand and try new places for 2019.
Also, my unit at The Customs House at West Bay in Dorset had its best ever year, so exciting times!

As always, keep in touch right here for all the latest news!!

Sunday, 30 December 2018


Over the holidays I've been thinking I must add to my list of retro football collages I've designed.

So as I live in Dorset, it makes perfect sense to do the nearest League team to me, Dorset's very own Premier League team – BOURNEMOUTH!

And not far down the road from there is another top team – SOUTHAMPTON

So it looks like I've got my work cut out then!!

I've started sifting through the Retro Football Department in the ArtPix Storeroom for ideas, and have already found a few gems!!

Below is a fantastic programme from 1965, when Bournemouth were known as Bournemouth and Boscombe Athletic.
This is an FA Cup 1st Round clash with soon-to-be-Dorset local rivals Weymouth.
The non-leaguers held Bournemouth to a shock 0-0 draw, but were soundly beaten 4-1 in the replay.

This is a team group photo from the 1974/75 season, featuring a young looking Harry Redknapp!!
They are wearing one of my all-time favourite retro football kits. It had a fantastic newly-designed club badge and super-Seventies retro black and white vertical stripes!

Here we have a Southampton programme from 1975. 
It has a brilliantly designed cover. Multiple action shots, outrageously retro typography, and clear info enclosed in a neat red circle in the middle. A perfect design!
Defender Mel Blyth scored the only game of the game in a 1-0 win for the Saints.
A lot of the team playing that day would go on and win the FA Cup only a year later.

Lovely poster from the 1960/61 season featuring four proper old-school footballers!
One of them, Terry Paine, is also a proper legend, playing over 800 games for Southampton and staying there until 1974! 

If you want to see all the teams I've done so far, have a look HERE
See if your fave team is there, if not, get in touch and I'll design one for you!

Friday, 28 December 2018


One of the most fascinating things you find in the English landscape are the indomitable pillboxes that still stand proudly.

Most were set down in 1940 as a network of barriers to thwart an expected invasion.
They pop up anywhere, in the middle of a field, behind a wall, or right on the edge of a cliff.

Now they are so intrinsically linked to the landscape they seem part of it, and yet all are a timely reminder of darker times.

On a walk between Abbotsbury and West Bexington on the Dorset coast, you can find some great examples.

Here plonked right on Chesil Beach is this proud pillbox. 

With the whole of the South coast of England on the front-line it isn't particularly surprising to see one here.
And it's still in perfect condition, despite facing the full force of the weather for nearly 80 years.
The only thing that hasn't fully survived is the crafty disguise of a layer of stones to camouflage it, that blended it into its beach surroundings.

What is also interesting, is that as the pebbles on the beach have shifted, it has revealed the hidden base of the pillbox.

Not far from this is another one set in the middle of the hills that sweep down to the beach.
Oddly, its completely visible for miles around, built in red brick on a green field! 
I can only presume it would have been covered in camouflage netting of some sort to disguise it?! 

This stunning setting is just below St Catherine's Chapel at Abbotsbury, looking towards Weymouth and Portland. Below a pillbox still stands, and right in the middle of the picture, on the land jutting out into the Fleet near the Swannery, there is another one.

See if you can spot any on a walk sometime!