Have a go at our Daisy Dog Vintage Quiz!

The vintage quiz at our Daisy Dog Vintage Fair on August Bank Holiday Monday was great fun for all. If you missed it why not have a go now? The answers are at the bottom of the page ...

Hunting out Vintage in the USA

a fascinating insight by Richard Dumville of Richards' Retro Road Trip

If you like seeking out vintage and retro things (of course you do, or you wouldn’t be reading this!) and you are planning on travelling to the USA on holiday next year, then it is well worth finding time in your schedule to visit one of their many antique centres (or “malls” as the bigger ones are often called). Our North American cousins are quite partial to “antiquing” and a huge and long established network of antique stores and centres can be found right across the country.

I’m lucky enough to have been over the “pond” a few times, and having one day discovered a behemoth of a “mall” purely by chance, I became instantly hooked! They come in all shapes and sizes, ranging from the shops and centres we are more used to, right up to supermarket sized whoppers (for example, the “Heart of Ohio Antique Centre” comes in at 116,000 sq ft! see www.heartofohioantiques.biz/index.html). Their stock-in-trade is, as you might expect, Americana from across the decades - the country having produced so much “stuff” down the years. Thus, you will find just about everything from the very early days of European settlement right through to the more recent consumer boom of the 20th century.

The larger ones run along the lines of (and look very much like) a supermarket. Booths and cabinets are rented to sellers, who are responsible for stocking and pricing. You gather up your goodies and take them up to the counter at the front. Sometimes the big ones have intercoms that you can use to get staff to come and help you out with things. Because of the availability of vacant large single floor open plan buildings either in suburbs or on the fringes of cities and towns, then big centres can soon establish themselves. The spread of the big retail hitters such as “Wal-Mart” has killed off many local supermarkets, and many of these buildings find a new lease of life as an antique centre.

It is not uncommon to find detailed fold out maps produced for whole, or parts of, individual States, which the stores and centres subscribe to. These give basic info on where they can be found, size, opening hours, website and type of merchandise. To see a perfect example of this visit www.sundaydriver.com which covers the eastern States of the USA. You simply request the map (in digital or hard copy form) and they send it to you. If you are on a self-drive tour then you can also invariably pick them up the centres themselves. An example of a web based directory is www.antiquetrail.com.

The vast majority have their own websites, and I personally like to check these out first, before visiting. This is to confirm a) that they are still in business a lists can get out of date b) their opening times - not all are open every day and c) what sort of “stuff” you will find there. They all pretty much accept plastic and many booth owners often have good deals on. The only downside is that you can only bring so much home on the ‘plane as sending back by airmail is very expensive (and you risk getting clobbered for import duty and VAT). So don’t get carried away!

Happy hunting!

Make an scrumptious Apple Cake

This year's apple crop is expected to be up by more than 20% up, which is great news for our British growers. But if you've run out of ideas for what to do with all those fruits in your own garden why not try baking Annie's gorgeous Apple Cake for a sumptuous autumnal treat.

8 oz self raising flour
8 oz caster sugar
5 oz margerine
1 teaspoon Baking Powder
Almond essence
Sultanas (optional)
12 oz peeled, cored and sliced Bramley apples
Demerera sugar or flaked almonds for the topping (or both!!)

Mix the flour, sugar, margerine, baking powder and almond essence together to make a stiff sponge mixture. Pour half the mixture into an 8" cake tin and arrange the apples in layers with the sultanas if you're adding those in. Add the remaining cake mix on top of the apples. Sprinkle with demerera sugar or flaked almonds or both and bake at 170º C for 90 minutes. Enjoy hot or cold!

Bake a Hidden Heart cake

by Emma of Emma Page Cakes

Why should the outside of a cake have all the fun? Rustic buttercream cakes are on trend for birthdays and even weddings, but if you think your occasion demands a bit more embellishment, why not surprise guests with a hidden heart?

Red Heart Cake on the Daisy Dog Vintage blog

You’re going to need a deep, firm sponge, so use a reliable Madeira cake recipe (like this one) and make it in two eight inch pans. To avoid a huge dome, wrap the tins with newspaper and pile the raw mixture around the sides of the tins, leaving a hollow in the middle.

You’ll also need a red velvet sheet cake of around 37x23 cm (if you’re short of time, use a Betty Crocker Red Velvet mix for this, who’s to know?) and around 1.5 kg of buttercream frosting. If you really can’t be bothered with the red velvet cake, you can leave this stage, I’ll explain how in a bit.

When the round sponges are completely cool, level off the tops and very carefully halve each horizontally. You now have four sponges of the same size. Spread the top of two of the sponges with a layer of buttercream and sandwich with the other two. You now have two sandwich sponges.

Scratch a circle around the top of each cake, around 1cm in from the edge. You’re going to invert one cake onto the top of the other, so these circles will have to match up exactly. Some people use a little compass made out of cocktail sticks and string to make sure their circles are the same size. To find the precise centre of your cake, fold a circle of paper that is the same diameter into quarters and line it up with the edge of your cake. The point will mark the centre. Mark this point with a skewer pushed deep into both cakes and use it to guide your compass.

Take one cake and, using a sharp, long-bladed knife, cut a cone from the circle you have scratched out down to the centre of the cake, close to the bottom. With the second cake, cut down around the circle, but only half way down and return to the middle of the top in a curve, so you’re carving out a doughnut shape and leaving an inverted cone in the middle. You may find it easier to freeze this cake for half an hour before carving to get a smoother shape. This is going to be the top of your solid heart.

Freeze the discarded chunks of cake to make cake pops at a later date. Crumble your red velvet cake when cool with a fork and, using your hands, mix with about a cup of frosting. This is basically a cake pop mixture and will hold its shape when chilled. If you haven’t got a red velvet cake, break up the chunks of cake you have just discarded, along with the trimmings from the levelling stage, and mix with a cup of buttercream that you have coloured red with food paste.

Fill your cakes with this mixture, better to slightly overfill them, pressing it in firmly. Now spread or pipe a band of buttercream around the edge of your red filling on both cakes. Now you have to invert the second cake on top of the first. Just hold your breath and flip it over in one movement. Whatever you do don’t mix them up!

Put the cake in the fridge for at least half an hour. Then take it out and apply a thin ‘crumb coat’ of buttercream to the top and sides, smoothing it firmly with a palette knife. Then back in the fridge for another few minutes. Remove and frost generously with your remaining buttercream, using a scraper if you have one to get a smooth finish. Your heart will have set by now. When it comes to serving, cut a large slice so you can reveal it in all its glory.

If you try this recipe send us a picture of your creation - we'll decide on a champion later in the year!


Held five times a year at Hove Town Hall this Art Deco Fair is a grand day out by the sea!

Daisy Dog Vintage Quiz Answers

Christian Dior launched his first fashion collection for Spring–Summer 1947 on 12 February of that year. The show of "90 models of his first collection on six mannequins" was presented in the salons of the company's headquarters at 30 Avenue Montaigne, Paris. Originally the two lines were named Corolle and Huit but the new collection went down in fashion history as the 'New Look' after the editor-in-chief of Harper's Bazaar, Carmel Snow, exclaimed "It's such a New Look!"

Brothel Creepers (sometimes shortened to creepers) are a style of shoe which has thick crepe soles, often in combination with suede uppers. This style of footwear became fashionable in the years following World War II, seeing resurgences of popularity at various times ever since.

Homburg hats, traditionally crafted of wool or felt and adorned with a grosgrain hatband, first became popular in the early 1900s after Edward VII's visit to Bad Homburg, Germany. The look remained fresh in European fashion as British comedian Tony Hancock used the homburg hat as his signature accessory.

Lesley Hornby was born on born 19 September 1949 and became widely known by the nickname Twiggy. She is an English model, actress, and singer. In the mid-1960s, she became a prominent British teenage model of swinging sixties London. She was initially known for her thin build (thus her nickname) and her androgynous look consisting of big eyes, long eyelashes and short hair.

Buddy Holly, was an American musician and singer-songwriter who was a central figure of mid-1950s rock and roll. He recorded a demo of 'That'll Be the Day' which was released by Brunswick Records as a single credited to 'The Crickets'. The Crickets then became the name of Holly's band.

The Shadows are a British instrumental rock group and Cliff Richard's backing band, with 69 UK chart singles from the 1950s to the 2000s. 35 of these hits are credited to the Shadows and 34 to Cliff Richard and the Shadows. The group, who were in the forefront of the UK beat-group boom, were the first backing band to emerge as stars.

"Tony" Hadley (born 2 June 1960) first rose to fame in the 1980s as the lead singer of the English new wave band Spandau Ballet. "Gold" is the single which the band released in 1983 from their third album "True".

The Bay City Rollers are a Scottish pop band whose popularity was highest in the mid 1970s. The magazine "British Hit Singles & Albums" noted that they were the "tartan teen sensations from Edinburgh" and were one of the most screamed-at teeny-bopper acts of the 1970s! Bet you all knew this one!

Spam is a brand of canned precooked meat made by Hormel Foods Corporation and first introduced in 1937. Ken Daigneau, brother of a company executive, won a $100 prize that year in a competition to name the new item. Hormel claims that the meaning of the name is known by only a small circle of former Hormel Foods executives, but popular beliefs are that the name is an abbreviation of 'spiced ham', 'spare meat', or 'shoulders of pork and ham'. Another popular explanation is that Spam is an acronym standing for 'Specially Processed American Meat' or 'Specially Processed Army Meat'. For the purposes of this Vintage Quiz Spam does NOT mean unsolicited, undesired, or illegal email messages!

Constance Spry, an English food writer and flower arranger, and chef Rosemary Hume, both principals of the Cordon Bleu Cookery School in London, are credited with the invention of Coronation Chicken. Preparing the food for the banquet of the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II in 1953, Spry proposed the recipe of cold chicken, curry cream sauce and dressing. Coronation Chicken may have been inspired by Jubilee Chicken, a dish prepared for the Silver Jubilee of George V in 1935, which mixed chicken with mayonnaise and curry. For the Queen's Golden Jubilee in 2002 another celebratory dish was devised, also called Jubilee Chicken.

It may not have been quite the first ARM (Ambient Ready Meal), but Vesta Curry was the archetypal TV dinner. Launched in 1961 by the very British firm of Batchelors, Vesta curry was a testament to our growing passion for Indian food and the fact that we preferred TV to conversation. That may not have changed, although Vesta curries have. They may have been the height of exoticism in the 1960s, but this suspiciously shiny brown goo tasted more of Worcestershire sauce than anything from the Indian subcontinent. Then again, we didn't know any better. The Guardian - Nostalgia

Prawn cocktail, also known as shrimp cocktail, is a seafood dish consisting of shelled cooked prawns in a cocktail sauce (typically mayonnaise, tomato ketchup and a couple of shakes of Tabasco) served in a glass. It was the most popular hors d'œuvre in Great Britain from the 1960s to the late 1980s and was likewise ubiquitous in the United States around this time. According to the English food writer Nigel Slater, the prawn cocktail has spent most of its life see-sawing from the height of fashion to the laughably passé and is now often served with a degree of irony.

The fire brigade is perhaps Trumpton's most-recognised feature. Captain Flack's roll-call was recited in all but one episode: Pugh, Pugh, Barney McGrew, Cuthbert, Dibble, Grub. Puppeteer Gordon Murray has explained that "Pugh and Pugh are twins you must understand - not Hugh, Pugh."

Clangers is a British stop-motion animated children's television series of short stories about a family of murine creatures who live on, and inside, a small moon-like planet. They speak only in whistles and eat green soup (supplied by the Soup Dragon) and blue string pudding. The programmes were originally broadcast by BBC1 between 1969 and 1972, followed by the first of three special episodes that was broadcast in 1974.

Captain Scarlet and the Mysterons is a 1960s British science-fiction television series produced by the Century 21 Productions company of Gerry and Sylvia Anderson, John Read and Reg Hill. First broadcast on ATV Midlands from September 1967 to May 1968, it has since been transmitted in more than 40 other countries including the United States, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. Characters are presented as marionette puppets alongside scale model sets and special effects in a filming technique that the Andersons termed "Supermarionation".

Pan's People were formed in December 1966 in London. Set up as a sextet, they were first approached to appear on Top of the Pops in 1968. Babs Lord married actor Robert Powell in 1975 and became an amateur yachtswoman and world explorer, with several trips to the Himalayas, the Sahara, both Poles and the jungle in Guyana. She was the subject of BBC's This Is Your Life in November 2001 and appeared on the final regular weekly edition of Top of the Pops on 30 July 2006.