Mar 04

To Market, To Market, To Buy Me Some Plates.

Yesterday was the first Saturday of the month. That means its flea market time!! Every month a flea market is organised on the dry docks of the old ship building company of Amsterdam at the NDSM wharf. It consists of an indoor and outdoor area, and is fenced in. Visitors pay a € 4 fee to get in and browse the almost 300 stalls for cheap deals. Be aware that there is not much in way of food there. The only food stalls we encountered were the poffertjes stall, the french fry stall and another kiosk inside selling bread rolls and sandwiches and soft drinks ~ so don’t come hungry. There are no tables or chairs to sit at. There is however a very nice cafe about 100m from the ferry pier where you get off if you are coming in from Amsterdam Central Station.  The ferry from Central Station to the NDSM wharf if free of charge. No tickets required.




I was there with R (left the dog at home) to pick up a few specifics ~ porcelain or bone China plates, serving platters, antique cutlery and a cake pedestal. We combed thru each and every one of the stalls and had a lot of fun. There was a huge variety of stuff on sale from garden decorations to chandeliers; paintings, old furniture, retro telephones to first generation Nintento game consoles.


After a few hours I came home with my treasures, feeling very satisfied. Well at least until R got to the living room and kitchen and discovered what a “busy boy” our 3 yr old Bernese had been while we were away. See, Doopey usually goes everywhere with at least one of us on a daily basis. I do not work so I am home with him everyday anyway and I keep him in line when he gets cheeky and tries to push his boundaries with me. But ever since we left him in kennel care for fifteen days last month while we went on holiday to Switzerland, he has come back with a mild separation anxiety disorder. He gets uneasy when we leave the house without him and he has become what I like to term a “Velcro dog”. He needs to know that someone is in the same room at all times, except at bedtime when R and I go to bed, then he is quite happy to stay in the living room and sleep by the radiator.


But yesterday he was upset that we did not include him on our outing and was rather confused as we closed the door behind us, leaving him in the hallway. When we got home some 6 hrs later we found him exactly where we left him, in the hallway sleeping next to our bedroom door, prompting us to go, “Awww …”.


The moment was short lived.

Seconds later I hear R go, “What the…. Oh. My. God!!”




It was quite a mess, and Doopey knew he had done something naughty so he ran out onto the patio and stayed there. He ate all the leftover lasage, roast chicken bones and pizza. And when we looked at him with an accusatory look, he looked back at us with an almost angelic expression … with a price tag stuck to the end of his nose. SO BUSTED!! There were cupcake wrappers strewn all across our living area right up to the patio.


Been a very busy dog indeed.




La la la la …. I don’t know what you’re talking about, Mum.


Anyway, we cleaned up fairly quick and it was good there were no raw meat scraps in the trash, just packaging and a few cooked leftovers …. of which he erased all traces of.

Back to my purchases. I started off with a lovely oblong candy dish (I think), with pretty blue flowers on it. Made in Bavaria, Germany. Do not now the date of when it was made. € 5.50. A very happy buy for me. All these ceramics will hopefully feature in some of my photographs when I showcase my desserts.








I never started out wanting to know about the origins of porcelain or china, but my days spent watching Antiques Roadshow, Flog It!, and Cash in the Attic have deepened my curiosity. I looked online for a reliable website to tell me something about the make of this particular piece of porcelain and the era of which it was made in. Most sites I have come to require a membership of some sort and an annual fee. Drat!

I have been fascinated by pieces like this since I was in my early 20’s, and I used to trawl the internet and eBay looking for pieces. I never had any use for them back then so I bought them and sent them to my mother, and she displayed them in her glass showcase. I mainly bought stuff from the Royal Doulton, Wedgewood, Royal Worchester and Noritake collection coz they were the easiest to find and I like English designs. Chintz teacups were another fascination of mine and I used to save hundreds of pictures of them on file. My favourites were the more frou-frou designs and the Russian ones with gold trimmings. I had it firmly in my head that if I had a tearoom business, I would serve all my cakes on plates like these.


My second purchase of the day was a € 2 bone china saucer of English make. Typical red rose design, very simple yet vibrant. The lady said it had a corresponding cup to go with it but she could not find it … hence the € 2 price tag. From the Queen Anne collection ~ I feel like throwing an English themed tea party already!








And last but not least …. I think this last purchase has got to be my favourite buy of the day. I laid eyes on it almost by accident while paying for my Queen Anne saucer. This set is very delicate and I had never seen anything quite like this before. I have absolutely NO IDEA what it’s used for, but I reckon it is a bon bon dish with a set of six corresponding bon bon saucers.





 Made in Germany, I believe these are porcelain. Again, I tried to find out more info on the make but in vain. Back in the day I used to look out for teapots because my mother used to collect miniature teapots, and I remember buying her (all the way from England) a not-so-miniature commemorative teapot celebrating the Queen’s 50th anniversary of her reign. On one side of the pot was a portrait of her on her coronation day, and on the other side was a portrait of her as she looked on her 50th anniversary as monarch. There was also a teacup and I bought that too. I never bothered looking at makers marks or anything like that … I just bought them because they looked pretty. These days I am not an antique fanatic … just more curious than anything else because the origins of these fine pieces are so fascinating. Three cheers for shows like the Antiques Road Show and Bargain Hunt!









In future I hope to collect many more pieces and hopefully I will also know more of the origins of these pieces. Until then I will keep scouring flea markets and the internet for more good deals.





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