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Those of you who follow me on Instagram and watch items on my website will have noticed that I've been a little more quiet lately. It has been quite the month. In the first week of November my father passed away, which started a difficult and busy time. It also coincided with several other pressing demands elsewhere in life, and if that wasn't enough I had an unpleasant encounter with a norovirus (I won!).

My father with his beloved cat, 1937

Sometimes there is no let-up in life, these life events just need to be lived, and some things will have to fall by the wayside for a little while. But then I realised I didn't like leaving people guessing (how could I more or less disappear just at the holiday gift season??) so I thought to just write something more personal. After all, everything is personal; I don't believe in any kind of split between me, my life and my business.

My father passed away last month aged 91, and my mother 5 years before him. Both lived to a ripe old age, having lived full lives - a privilege. Although not immediately expected, I was ready for it and have peace. And whatever family difficulties there may have been over the years, I feel left with a lot of love.

My mother as an art student, in about 1951

But I realised something interesting that happens when your second parent dies: they hold the space for the first parent you lost. Suddenly you lose both of them all over again. Although in many ways I was closer to my mother, I have been experiencing deeper grief this time - because now it is final. The space my father held for my mother is closed; the space they held together for me to grow up in and exist as an adult is also gone.

The kind funeral lady (who helped us organise a beautiful funeral, driving my father off in a cool hearse that was really a converted hippie-bus; he would have loved it) said: "Now you're an orphan - it doesn't matter what age you are". That moved me very much. Suddenly you feel a little alone and exposed.

about 10 years ago

But time heals all wounds. I need some sleep, and some walks out in nature. And I will return to a busy business when I am ready. Once I have recharged, I'm sure the ideas for a wonderful New Year season will come and I will excite you with some lovely stuff. In the meantime, the shop is of course open as usual, and below are some new Samuel Alcock pieces that I've just released.

For now, I hope that everyone is doing wonderful, that the Americans have had a lovely Thanksgiving with much to be grateful for, and that world peace will be at least one little step closer by the time it's Christmas. See you again soon!

Holiday Shipping Deadlines!

To ensure safe transport during the chaotic holidays, international orders need to be in by the end of Monday 4 December, and UK orders by Thursday 14 December - shipping will be resumed on Monday 8 January.

The Murray Pollinger Collection of Samuel Alcock

In the meantime, this wonderful collection is still available. Many pieces have been snapped up in the last three weeks, but there are still plenty to choose from... and even just going through the catalogue is a joy! I have now started to release small batches of the items into my normal shop stock (see below for the latest ones), but if you'd like to get access to the whole collection, please make sure you are a subscriber so you receive an email with links to the catalogue, more information about Murray and his wonderful collection, and the shop page with the items for sale.

Where to find things

You can find all my available stock here. If you always want to see the latest additions, follow me on Instagram... I post pictures and a story several times a week.

Happy weekend!

Beach walk on their 25th anniversary, 1982


This week's new treasures:​


1 Comment

Dec 02, 2023

So sorry Willa, to read of your loss. You have been so fortunate to have had the pleasure of having your father in your life for all of these years. It is a privilege denied to many.

Thank you for the pleasure you give to your followers by introducing us to your beautiful china. I do appreciate your willingness to share your knowledge and expertise.

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