Autumnal rambles around the Wairarapa

For the past four years, I’ve had an annual visit to my friend Emma’s in Featherston for a weekend of fun, food, junk-shopping and Nana-ish great times…we did it earlier than usual this year and it was entirely great.

We stopped in at cafes (Cuckoo, The French Bakery and Trocadero), many lovely shops, one pub (Cool Change, Martinborough), Emma took me to see a local-knowledge icon -The spooky abandoned house on the hill- which I didn’t get a photo of because there was a gang of tourists taking photographs of it and I didn’t want to join the tourist throng, even though I totally WAS one!

We also went to see the Wes Anderson film ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’ which I experienced as PERFECT. Beautifully styled, superbly acted, and funny funny funny. I loved it! It’s definitely a film that cries out to be viewed on the big screen, and now I want to see it again, and soon.  The cinema in Masterton is wonderful,  a real step into the past. I thought Emma’s heart skirt went quite well with the cinema carpet…



1960s handbags on the wall at Cool Change:


I hovered for far too long around this suitcase of soulful old teddies in a junk shop, but given I’ve just sold off my vintage-toy collection on trademe….I tore myself away lest I ‘accidentally’ start a new one. I do love old toys, though, they are so characterful!


I had fun times spotting old fonts and signs:



I love the name of this pipe band ‘Fern and Thistle’ – I’m guessing the fern = New Zealand and the thistle = Scotland. I said to Emma, ‘Do you reckon The Fern and Thistle Piping Band is still going?’ and she said ‘Doubt it’ but she was wrong….a quick internet search revealed that it is! It’s ‘the Wairarapa’s only pipe band, established in 1958’ and not only is it still going…it has a facebook page! So there you go. I wonder if this sign was painted in 1958? The font of ‘secretary’ looks to be a 50s/60s font. (Font-nerd IN THE HOUSE.)

Are you old enough to remember four-digit phone numbers? I am!


There’s always pretty corners at Emma’s house. She got a big scratch on her hand picking this lichen-covered lemon-bough for the room I was sleeping in – now that’s friendship!


wairap_8 wairap_9

I read many of the great magazines Emma bought home from her trip to Japan. Check out this bonnet shaped like a beef steak, and the perfection of the granny-chic picture below…

wairap_6 wairap_7

You can read Emma’s take on the weekend HERE.

Last time I cam home from Emma’s I went down with pneumonia. This time the worst that happened was a bit of indigestion from eating too much delicious food. I had a grand old time and now feel very relaxed and inspired, Hoorah!



One thought on “Autumnal rambles around the Wairarapa

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s