The number thirteen is considered unlucky by some, but this year I've been married 13 years and I couldn't be luckier. When it comes to presents, I do like a bit of tradition and although it probably is a bit cheeky, I like to choose my own gift. That is one of the great things about having been married so long, I know my husband well enough to be pretty confident that he doesn't mind too much.
According to the tea towel (linen for 12 years) that I gave my husband last year, detailing what I will be expecting for each year of our marriage, lace is traditionally given for 13 years of marriage. You can't imagine my delight, I totally adore lace, if its vintage lace, I don't believe it can get any better. It just so happens that I had recently been looking for some prettier lace curtains for Josie's room so I had a fair idea of what I wanted. And there it was a vintage sample of original Nottingham lace rescued from an old Victorian Lace mill before it was demolished in the 1980s. The lady lucky enough to purchase this antique stash told me that there were shelves and shelves of carefully wrapped samples spanning the entire manufacturing life a the factory.
I bought an Art Deco original 1930s design called 'Susie', which in my mind is priceless. The lace factory is gone, the British manufacturing has all but died and Nottingham's lace making fame is now a part of history, but there in our front room hangs my beautiful lace curtain, celebrating thirteen years of happiness.
And to be fair, I did get my husband a rather fab present. On a website somewhere I found some anniversary gift ideas that were more appropriate for the boys and a barometer was suggested for 13 years. Thank goodness for eBay, you truly can find just what you want: an Art Deco Oak case barometer, perfect.