Coolac Market, NSW

9 Apr

Random signs on the road painted “Market today” get us every time. Driving along the Hume Highway on Easter Sunday on route to Melbourne we spotted such a sign and just had to pull off into Coolac for a quick look. Typical of a small country town the first landmark we see is the pub and then the Coolac Memorial Hall where the market was held. Inside we were greeted by a handful of local stallholders selling mostly handmade items (jams, sewing, flower arrangements etc) but it was the gentleman selling refurbished tools and antique items that caught my eye. All of his goods had been lovingly looked after and polished for sale. I thought of my father and how he would love to look over the tools but I managed to find him something else more unique. Almost hidden at the back of a table laden with glassware and vintage Red Cross badges was a miniature mixer. At first I thought it was a travelling sales rep’s sample but the elderly stallholder told me it had been his daughter’s toy as a child in the 1950’s. She also had a little “electric” kettle to go with the mixer but it has long since disappeared. The mixer has a switch to rotate the beater but as expected is no longer working. I’m sure my dad could get it going again, he loves to tinker with such things and collects (amongst many old things) antique toys, restoring them to their original condition as best he can. I purchased the toy for $20. On the base was the manufacturer, Tri-ang. Made in England. I’ve since researched online the Tri-ang story and it seems that their railway and doll house range are most sought after. I couldn’t find any detail about my particular mixer though?

Tri-ang toy mixer

Hunter gathering is a learned skill in my family and our offspring love being able to buy something themselves. On this day they found a basket full of handmade baby doll clothes. The girls immediately ran back to the car to get their beloved teddies; Rosie & Florry. After an age trying various outfits on their bears much to the amusement of the lady who made them, I  persuaded the girls to make their final decision and pay the woman some money. They purchased a green floral dress with matching bloomers, handknitted cardigans and beanies, fleecy pyjamas and loose knitted ponchos all for a tiny $1 a piece! Then as if they didn’t have enough already the stallholder also gave the girls easter eggs in tiny knitted chickens. Squeals of “Look mum! They’re sooo cute!” echoed through the hall followed by soft giggles from the surrounding stallholders.

Florry & Rosie in their new outfits

Coolac is in the Riverina region of NSW near Gundagai. It’s a small country town with less than 400 residents, all the more reason to stop in, have a look around and support the local community. Happy Easter!

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2 Responses to “Coolac Market, NSW”

  1. Rose Lewis April 10, 2012 at 6:31 pm #

    Thanks for the great post on Coolac Market. I would not have know about it if I wasn’t a fan of Hunter Gatherers. I particularly like how you talked about your dad and his tinkering. There should be more tinkerers in the world! I love Florry & Rosie’s new outfits – So Cute!

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