23 November 2012

Family Relics

Many years ago hubs and I lived in a huge 5 bedroomed house with stained glass windows, a staircase more suited to a crinolined lady, and a huge hall with a picture shelf all the way round. It was on that shelf that I displayed my collection of glass bottles, all shapes and sizes, ages, and colours. They were fun to collect, not so much fun to keep clean! If we saw a village market I just had to stop and see if any ancient bottles were for sale.

However, the collection had to be curtailed when we moved to a bungalow which was fairy-like compared to the big house. Nowadays it is known as downsizing.  As years rolled by the assortment of bottles diminished, some were broken and some given away until I was left with a few miniature relics of days gone by.

Having a house decorated does wonders for sorting out ones belongings and that’s how I came to study six of those relics. So the question arose ... chuck or not to chuck? The answer was ... No. Here's the six items in question. 

Mackenzie Smelling Salts
Original Bovril Bottle
 A very old medicine bottle (with measurements)
A bottle of Venos lightning cough cure 
A small bottle of Spike Lavender oil made by Boots, the Chemist, with some oil still inside.
Original Eye Bath
Two items, smelling salts and Spike Lavender, had belonged to my aunt, sadly no longer with us, and to discard them would be like removing her presence from my memory. So I made them into a display piece, gluing each item into a wooden box I just happened to have. It once contained packs of herbal and fruit teas, a gift from Australia, and was exactly the right size to hold a few vestiges of the past.
What do you think?


  1. I think I'm a lover of old coloured bottles, so I'm very biased.
    Like you, pretty to look at and a pain to dust. LOL
    I've never thought to put them in a shadow box--but it's a cute idea!

  2. Hubby has one of those smelling salt bottles, he still uses it when he has a headache.

    Great way to display your bottles Valerie!

  3. i think it a very cool way to display your bottles...cold bottles are pretty cool...esp since they are so different than what we have today...

  4. I am a lover of old bottles too, especially if they have labels imprinted into the bottle. Your shadow box is excellent!

  5. Thanks, Mel. I remember when shadow boxes were all the rage, holding anything and everything.

    Thanks, Pearl. Hope your hubby doesn't need smelling salts too often.

    Thank you, Brian, you should have seen my original display ... time marches on, though.

  6. Thank you, Banker Chick. I wonder if in the future folk will collect present-day bottles.

  7. they look perfect in the shadow box. How about putting a mirror in the back of the box, it would hopefully reflect the light from the bottles.


  8. I like it! It's a fabulous collection!!

  9. Very talented ideas worth bottling!!

  10. That's a great idea, Valerie!

    Those are for keeps. I think having them displayed is pretty cool, considering that very few people still own bottles such as those nowadays. Glad you kept them.


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