A Conway Stewart pen, a moon map, a mysterious hat stand, a glass ship in a bottle, antique Chinese spoons – there’s something for everyone at the Godstone Emporium.
As usual there is plenty to write home about where Godstone Emporium is concerned – not least this beautiful Conway Stewart fountain pen which dates from the late 1950s/early 1960s. Featuring a lovely green celluloid marble-effect pattern and 14ct gold nib, it would make a fine addition to any pen aficionado’s collection. The pen features a ‘lever fill’ mechanism on the side which is used to draw ink into the internal bladder. The barrel has a few marks on it and the pen could probably do with a service, but this is a chance to pick up a classic writing instrument for just £22.
‘Conway Stewart’ was founded by Frank Jarvis and Thomas Garner in London in 1905 – the company name perhaps being derived from that of a contemporary comedy double act. Dozens of different models were produced over the decades, this one being a classic ‘No 12’. Blue and burgundy versions were also available.
Elsewhere in the shop is this highly unusual pair of metal horns mounted on a plinth.
Perhaps modelled on an antelope, it is very decorative and yours for just £35. A guaranteed conversation starter, maybe you could use it as a hat stand?
Another curiosity is this delicate glass ship in a bottle. The secret of ‘conventional’ wooden or card ships in bottles is general knowledge nowadays – the hull of the vessel fits through the neck of the bottle and strands of cotton are then used to raise the hinged masts and rigging. But how on earth do you do it when the entire boat is made from glass? Considering the amount of work that went into producing it, £3 seems a ridiculously good bargain.
Moving to a far larger scale, recent visitors to the Emporium will have noticed a magnificent geographical picture of the moon on the right-hand wall. Produced at a scale of 1:2,300,000 it features incredible detail, including the names of hundreds of landmarks such as the ‘Mare Humorum’ (Sea of Moisture) and Lacus Somniorum (Lake of Dreams). Priced at £395, sadly it has already been snapped up. But rumour has it that another is due to ‘land’ in the shop shortly – watch this ‘space’.
The Emporium would like to say a warm ‘welcome’ to Rebecca Green – her cabinet can be found on the right-hand side of the shop as you enter. Among a number of beautiful items for sale, she is offering these “Antique Chinese export silver spoons” in their original box for £125.
Sadly we will also shortly be bidding ‘farewell’ to an established and well-loved seller, Cat Longhurst, who is heading for Northampton. All at the Emporium would like to wish her and her family the very best of luck!
Finally, please keep your eyes peeled for news of our annual Christmas Fair. Due to take place on a Saturday towards the end of November, it’s your chance to meet the sellers, enjoy a hot mince pie and a glass of mulled wine. And, of course, pick up that very special Christmas gift.
Strictly Come Dancing champion Joanne Clifton and antiques expert David Harper were special guests at the Emporium in June when Celebrity Antiques Road Trip came to town.
The pair scoured the shop for items to sell at auction and came away with a couple of beautiful objects. To find out what they were and whether they made a profit, you’ll have to tune into BBC2 at some point in the near future – watch this space for details!
Joanne, who won the popular television dancing competition with partner Ore Oduba in 2016, announced recently that she will be appearing in the touring production of Flashdance The Musical. The show visits Wimbledon and Dartford in October and Tunbridge Wells in December – to find out more, see flashdanceuktour.co.uk.
Meanwhile, the Emporium is delighted to report that Julie Bond is branching out into a larger section of the shop (on the right-hand side). Julie specialises in art and curios (she is a fine artist in her own right – see julie-bond.com for details of her exhibition, Emotive, at Denbies at the end of August).
If you go to the Godstone Fete on Monday 28 August, look out for the Emporium-sponsored nag in one of the donkey races! Other attractions at this year’s event include a Punch & Judy show and a traditional Dutch street organ (named ‘Tulip’) that spent many years playing on the streets of Leiden.
Here’s a quick look at some of the antiques and decorative items currently on sale in the Emporium…
As usual, Cecilia’s section is filled with beautiful objects.
On top of the blue dressing table (£160) is a lovely wooden box featuring mother of pearl detailing – it’s yours for £34. The ethnic sculpture is just £16.
Contrary to popular belief, aneroid barometers do not contain mercury. Small changes in air pressure cause a small flexible metal box (an aneroid cell) inside to expand or contract, which in turn engages a spring and mechanical levers which drive the needle on the face. Tap the case and the needle will rise or fall – a move to the right indicates rising air pressure and – hopefully – better weather!
Dating from the 19th century it has a light-green glaze finish; the coin slot is just out of view. Measuring only about three inches in height, this highly unusual item is yours for £30.
Book lovers may be interested in this charming copy of Eyes and No Eyes by Arabella B Buckley, printed by Cassell and Company in 1903. Someone has taken the trouble to cover it in brown paper, and inside you will find a handwritten dedication to one ‘Una R Webb’ in Christmas 1911.
A treasured gift no doubt. Also known as ‘Mrs Fisher’, Buckley wrote numerous other books on science and natural history for children, including The Fairy-Land of Science and By Pond and River. She died in 1929, aged 88. The price of this fascinating little volume is just £6.