It’s never long before I am getting ‘itchy feet’ for my next Art Deco Travels. After some intense weeks of knuckling down to the jobs in hand, I am now literally ready to blow the ‘Cobwebs’ away!
Having a day in Southampton, prior to boarding the Queen Mary Ship of the Cunard Liner fleet, I know of a certain alluring shop, for all you transport enthusiasts. Yes it is aptly named ‘Cobwebs’ and is nestled in the older quarter of the City.
It was established in 1975 by Peter Boyd-Smith as a general antique shop, but has since specialised in ocean liner and transport memorabilia. Peter greatly admired his Father, who was in the Royal Navy and received accolades for his bravery and conduct during the Second World War. So gradually the love of the sea and transport swayed Peter, to predominantly stock and sell in this field. He also passed on his enthusiasm to his Son Simon, who helps out in the shop at weekends.
The shop has two floors with over six thousand items on display. It is rather like looking around a museum, however the difference here, is that you can buy the prized objects!
Simon advised me, that the wonderful mix of items for sale appeal to all age groups, from children who are starting out their collections and adults alike. With this in mind the items are accessibly priced, obviously depending on the items rarity. Simon explained that the Titanic memorabilia is always at a premium, however the general public are becoming more interested now, in a wider variety of ships. The Cunard line, always appealing, especially the RMS Queen Mary, which retired in 1967 and is now permanently docked at Long Island, California and is a floating museum and hotel.
I can see why this shop has clients from all over the World and has been the focus of a certain ‘TV show’ on three separate occasions! Not to mention a few ‘A’ list celebrities who have passed its threshold. I was particularly taken with the Queen Elizabeth desk up for grabs, however I had to pass on this as space prevails. I have however at home, my delightful original RMS badges and pins, which have been passed down by family members and are cherished, along with a delicate butterfly wing, miniature picture of an ocean liner.
Just a few things on offer in the shop are; Paintings old and modern, posters and prints, ships furniture, chinaware from egg cups to tea sets, Silver plate items with the company monogram, carpets and steamer blankets, ships bells, instruments, maritime books and ephemera.
So, if this type of memorabilia ‘floats your boat’ make sure you pay a visit to this interesting and friendly family run business. Cobwebs: 78 Northam Road, Southampton. SO14 0PB. Tel: 023 8022 7458 Open 10.30 – 4pm: Monday – Saturday (Closed Wednesdays & Sundays)
Until next month TTFN, from Genista Davidson The Art Deco Traveller.