Hester Fleming Vintage

20th Century Jewellery and Accessories

Eat & Drink: The Grounds of the City, Sydney

Sydney, Travel, Eat & Drink, LifestyleHester Fleming

I am all about meeting good friends for a cup of coffee or lunch.  Having moved from Melbourne to London, to New York and now Sydney, having a few social connections, can make all the difference in a new place.   Last week, I met my friend Heather, who I originally met in New York, and is now living in Sydney too.  We caught up at The Grounds of the City, located at 500 George Street, in the CBD. 

  Image courtesy of google..

Image courtesy of google..

First off, it's a good idea to have a reservation. This place is bustling and understandably too. When you walk through the entrance, it's like you've been transported to a parallel universe of old school charm. Think New York brasserie and colonial style Hong Kong. The interior fit out is fantastic.   

On arrival, I was taken to our reserved table and I ordered my usual single shot long black coffee. I shouldn't have been surprised how good the coffee was.  I really enjoyed it. For lunch both Heather and myself ordered the Chriashi style salad with tuna tartar. It was excellent, well presented and fresh. 

Even though the restaurant was at full capacity, we didn't feel rushed. We eventually asked for the bill and headed out via the bar, where we decided coming back for a cocktail or two, would be a very good idea.  I highly recommend The Ground of the City


Travel Tip: Three Great Vintage Markets To Visit In New York

Vintage Jewellery, Lifestyle, Vintage Markets, Vintage Shopping Tips, TravelHester Fleming

When you're planning that exciting trip to New York, I highly recommend including a Saturday or Sunday morning pottering around a Manhattan vintage flea market. They're a great experience and a fascinating insight into the world of New York fashion. Celebrities, editors, journalists, bloggers, costume designers, fashion designers etc, are often seen at these markets for inspiration. When I was living in New York, I made a habit of attending at least one every weekend. Also worth noting, is many of the vintage traders at these markets, have an amazing background in fashion. If you give them a minute or two, try and spark up a conversation, they have a wonderful knowledge and love to talk.  Please note, each market title below is linked with their website homepage, offering up to date information about locations and trading hours.

 1. Chelsea Flea Market

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While I was living in New York, this market was my favourite. I used to turn up early on a weekend morning with a warm coffee in hand. This market trades no matter what the weather is doing. Please note, the speciality of this market is jewellery and collectables, with little clothing.  I used to pick up some great mid century costume jewellery pieces by Trifari, Monet and Coro. Lots of couture scarves and a few bags.  The location of this market is great as well. It's within a ten minute walk to the Flatiron building, Madison Square Park and the wonderful Italian dining establishment Eaterly.  

2. Grand Bazaar, Upper West Side

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As I lived in Brooklyn, I didn't head up to this market often, but when I did, it didn't disappoint. Held every Sunday, there's a real mix of bric-a-brac, artists and designers, vintage/antique dealers and artisanal food vendors.  As this is an indoor/outdoor market, make sure you go inside. There are some great costume jewellery vendors to meet. I've also found the pricing really competitive at this market too. Another aspect to note about this market, is that it hosts themed monthly events, such as home decor and furniture bazaars, and craft pop ups. You can check their 2018 calendar of events here. There's a lot going on, the market organisers make a huge effort to keep things interesting and dynamic. The Grand Bazaar is also in close proximity to Central Park and the fascinating Natural History Museum.  You can make a fantastic day out of visiting this market and the Upper West Side. 

3. Hells Kitchen Flea Market 

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Another great market for bric-a-brac, antique/vintage vendors, and so many other types of collectables, I feel like you could find anything and everything here.  I always found this market great for mainstream vintage bags but that could just be my experience there. Located near Times Square and the Port Authority Bus Terminal, it's easily accessible too. This market is run every weekend, including Thanksgiving and Christmas Day! No need to stay cooped up in your apartment... And watch out for a regular vintage fashion vendor here, The Closet Without Walls, they have a jaw dropping collection to indulge in. 

If you would like to know more about visiting New York vintage markets, please contact me here

Images accompanying this post are courtesy of google.

Eat & Drink: The Palace Tea Room, Sydney

Lifestyle, Sydney, Eat & DrinkHester Fleming

A favourite place of mine in Sydney, to meet a friend for lunch or a cup of tea is The Palace Tea Room in the QVB. Offering a stunning selection of teas and a beautiful light menu of dishes, to tempt through out the day, The Palace Tea Room is a wonderful experience. 

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With 29 tea selections on offer, my current favorite (recommended to me by my cousin) is the Liquorice and Spicy Ginger blend. Every pot of tea is presented in a gorgeous Royal Dalton teapot, cup and saucer. 

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I confess to loving the salmon and grilled vegetable salad. I have also looked around and seen the beautiful servings of open sandwiches.  The staff will never make you feel rushed here, making a good catch up completely acceptable. A pot of tea and a light lunch will cost you upwards of $30. I highly recommend taking the time out to meet a friend and enjoy The Palace Tea Room. It's a wonderful nourishing way to treat yourself.

*images courtesy of google.

New Collection Pieces

Vintage JewelleryHester Fleming

I always feel a rush of excitement when it comes to vintage buying opportunities. There's something special about seeking vintage. Each piece has a story to it and I only ever buy when I'm inspired.  I have a few good sources in Australia now. The Rozelle Collectors Market is a great place for the completely unexpected. The monthly Sydney Antiques and Collectables fair is a treasure trove, and a few closed Facebook trading groups are very useful. Here a few highlights from the last couple weeks.

A french deco necklace

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A deco silver and enamel ring (please contact me if you're interested in this piece)

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A gorgeous, sparkly 1950s costume bracelet. In immaculate condition! 

A lovely pair of Lisner clip on earrings. They look big but are fantastic on (i'm wearing them here).  Fact: Lisner is a highly collectable, New York costume jewellery label. 

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If there's a special piece of vintage you're seeking, let me know, I'd love to help you find it.  Click here to send an enquiry. 

360 Fashion Market Review

Vintage Accessories, Vintage Markets, Vintage JewelleryHester Fleming

It was lovely to meet some of Canberra vintage enthusiasts last Sunday. The Fitters Workshop on the Kingston Foreshore is a great location. It was just a shame about the rain.  However, those that did come, were great. The coffee and DJ tunes were a treat too. 

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Vintage mid century starburst brooches were a popular choice. I think the rumour that the brooch is back, is true. 

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Pretty necklaces were also popular.  Particularly, the cameo and 1930s pendent.  A lot of people asked where I source my pieces and I always say it's a combination of all the years I've spent living in London, New York and Sydney. 

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This stunning Liberty bangle was snapped up quickly. Fingers crossed I find another one soon! Vintage bangles are a fantastic way to accessorise. They're a timeless accessory that rarely dates.  

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Mid century sterling silver and enamel pieces were in demand too. Butterflies in particular, as always.  If you have a piece in mind that you would like to source, I'd love to help, please contact me here.   My next event is in May. I'm sure I'll head across to Canberra again soon. Thank you for having me 360 Fashion Market. It was a great experience.   

360 Fashion Market, Canberra

Vintage Jewellery, Vintage Markets, Vintage Shopping TipsHester Fleming

I'm so excited to be participating at the 360 Fashion Market in Canberra, on Sunday 25th of February. Held at the Fitters Workshop, Kingston, there should be loads of affordable designer wear, vintage finds and local couture to get you excited. I'll be at stall number 9, with a big collection of vintage jewellery and accessories. Looking forward to meeting the vintage enthusiasts of Canberra.  Pictured below is a Vintage Ciro Bracelet, 1940s. $75. 

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Vintage Seekers Survival Guide: The Sydney Antique and Collectables Fair

Lifestyle, Vintage Jewellery, Vintage AccessoriesHester FlemingComment
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On the first Sunday of each calendar month, approximately 100 dealers from all over Australia, set up at the Sydney Antique and Collectables Fair, Wentworth Park Function Centre, Glebe. General admission is $6. Doors open at 9am and close at 3pm. Here are my top tips to make the most of this event, and others that you may attend.

1. Make sure you bring cash. Some dealers have an eftpos machine or a square reader, however, they don't always work.  You can withdraw cash from the event organiser but there is a fee on top of this withdrawal. My suggestion is to plan to visit an ATM before you arrive, to avoid any ounce of disappointment. 

2. Bring some nibbles and a bottle of water.  While there's a cafe on site which serves plenty of coffee and tea, a few nuts or a museli bar is a sure way too keep your mind sharp when you're working your way through the enormous range of collectables.

3. Wear comfortable shoes. There's lots to see and practically no where to sit, other than the cafe on site, which is always busy. 

3. Arrive early. It's a well known fact, trade starts as soon as the doors open.  For the best pieces of the day, it's first in, best dressed.

4. Be prepared to seriously rummage. Some dealers have mountains of estate lots on tables, waiting to be picked through. It's not glamorous, but there are definitely diamonds in the rough to be found. Be patient. 

5. Look at the piece of interest thoroughly. Think about the weight, the condition and whether all the stones are there, or if you see any cracks. Consider whether any repair work needs to be done and if you have the extra resources available to fix the piece properly.   

6. Ask the dealer politely for the best price they can offer.  Nine times out of ten, dealers won't be outrageous with their pricing. Often their first price is their best price. However, if you're buying a few pieces from a collection, then you can expect a reasonable discount. 

7. Regularly attend the Sydney Antiques and Collectables Fair. There's nothing better than developing a relationship with the dealers who trade at these shows. Let them know what you're interested in and ask a few questions about their collection. A touch of loyalty goes a long way too..  

Good Luck.