Shout out to the mum

The collecting gene runs strong in my family. Too strong Robin, the Best-est Husband (and die-hard minimalist) would say. I wrote about some of the toys, wallpaper and Christmas lights I found in my parents garage before and believe me, there’s more. If it wasn’t for Robin, e.v.e.r.y.t.h.i.n.g would be coming home with us. It would look like a second-hand shop exploded in our house and had some second-hand shop babies in the process.

A few months ago, the parents went to help my aunt sort and pack stuff for her move from Richards Bay to Pretoria. The ‘stuff’ included some old things that belonged to my aunt’s mother-in-law. Many items had to be sold or given away but my mom – bless the collecting gene – asked for these bits and pieces for me. Just had to take some photos and share them with you:

I’m a huge fan of vintage packaging, so I almost did cart wheels when she gave me these (promise – if I ever do cart wheels, I’ll post pics). They’re pop-up needle books by a German company called Wittekind. The needles, which were placed inside, are long gone but the pop-ups are still perfect. And the illustrations are just too sweet.

The mom also got me this 1938 edition of Die Huisvrou (The Housewife), an Afrikaans magazine, which is quite amusing. Aimed at moeders en dogters (mothers and daughters), it has cigarette advertising on the cover nogals. Love the retro ads and the illustrated fashion pages featuring options for formal occassions and everyday wear.

This weird little tin is the actual 'gift' but it is packed with sewing bits and bobs, which are quite cool. Rummaging through it, I realised that in many ways it offers a snapshot of someone’s life at some point, all deurmekaar, yet it somehow makes sense. What stories the buttons, screws, clasps and homemade pin cushion could tell!

Dankie ma, my aunt – and of course, Ouma Anna (my aunt’s mother-in-law).

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