Vintage and Decorative Letters

abc naman letters

We’ve always been big fans of typography…

When we opened our first shop, back in 1999, the trend for vintage lettering and typography had just started in the world of interiors and styling. Around that time, we chanced upon a complete tray of wooden letterpress at an auction…and discovered how decorative they were; and how it made great wall art. In fact that letterpress tray was one of the first things we ever sold!IMG_5477
We’ve now been selling letters, old and new, for over 15 years; sourcing vintage and salvaged letters that would originally have adorned the fronts of shops and factories etc.
We even made our own for a few years!

As with most trends, fashions come and go, and there was a point when you couldn’t open an interiors magazine, or look online without seeing an interior that had either an old, single letter, carefully ‘placed’ and propped up –  or a word spelled out in random types/sized fonts. Whilst some would say they have been over-used and have had their day. We still love them. But then we’ve never paid much attention to trends.

These ones are in the shop right now…IMG_6061Visitors to our shops will be familiar with the different ranges of
letters that we stock. But it has to be said, these mini metal script letters, that we’ve just added online, are probably our current favourites..
metal_script_lettersIMG_6034Also available, are our best selling larger metal letters that we’ve been selling for sometime now. Loosely based on Times New Roman, they can be mixed and matched with the script letters. These ones are also handmade and in random colours…steel officer's trunk

IMG_4120 IMG_4137

All online and in the shop!

Sm Script letters £8 each – approx 5cms   |  Lg Letters £12 each – approx 20cms high

Beside the Seaside

Typography & Signage in Hastings and Rye

At the end of last year, we took a little trip to the seaside, for a final little break before the Christmas season started in earnest……The thing that became apparent on our return, was the large amount of photos we’d taken of old handwritten/handmade signs and signage: Shop signs, house names, road names, fishing boat numbers and fish and chip shop signs…..seaside

RYE, East Sussex. 

We actually spent a weekend in the seaside towns of Hastings and the fishing port of Rye a few miles along the southern English coast. We’ve been to Rye a few times over the years, and it never fails to charm us, with its picturesque old town and cobbled lanes of cottages and houses…mermaid street 2

There’s an abundance of antique shops and emporiums, small boutiques – and a good choice of restaurants and coffee shops (and traditional tea shops- it is a very English town after all) There’s also a fantastic old Vinyl record store; Grammar School Records – situated in an old Grammar school (funnily enough) It’s always worth a visit, if you like a long player!

We found there are a lot of quirky houses in Rye if you keep your eyes open…2 front doorsPatriotic too…..fish and shipsprinters

Lovely little boutique – Violetta – closed unfortunately!violetta

A very neat and tidy looking homewares and ironmongers….Crockery

Philosophical messages atop the buildings! You just have to look up……DSCN1895

HASTINGS, East Sussex

Hastings is a contrasting town of two halves. Having never been before, we were surprised at the difference between the Old town and the ‘New’ town. The lovely Old town to the west of the town, has a wonderful mix of independent shops, pubs and restaurants, including many vintage/antique and lifestyle shops. We particularly liked the fantastic Myerscough & Mairs antiques and vintage shop, on the old high street. Lovely guy and great pieces. The ‘New’ town to the east, appears to consist of a mix of once beautiful old Victorian buildings, that have seemingly been long neglected (the magnificent old Palace Court Hotel on the seafront in particular) and a sprawling, shabby looking, commercial shopping centre. And dodgy looking guest houses…B&B

….we liked the front door of this B&B – but didn’t fancy staying there! And the ‘Antiques sign was clearly more interesting than the shop – it had closed down.antiques

Always handy to have a shop that serves soup, while choosing your wedding cakes – don’t you think?……DSCN1607

light steps

Alastair Hendy’s Homestore on the High Street is enough on it’s own, to warrant a visit to Hastings. We had a delicious, freshly caught sea food lunch here too….home store

The Haunted Waterloo Passage – off the old high street…waerloo

Who wouldn’t want to live at No.1 Pleasant row?pleasant rowHand painted signwriting….right Like the idea of a rock shop…rock shop

There are many more photo opportunities to be had down on the seafront. Hastings is still home to Europe’s largest beach based fishing fleet and you will find many old and abandoned fishing boats, amongst the working boats and fishmongers, selling their freshly caught produce….fresh fish Look out for the seagulls though…..fishing boat

By the way, we stayed at the George Hotel in Rye, on the high street. Fantastic, stylishly designed hotel, with great rooms and a cosy bar (with roaring log fire) and a great restaurant! Worth a stay….DSCN1863