Kitsch is defined as “excessively garish or sentimental art; usually considered in bad taste”. And yes, the items I’m showing you today have a sentimental ‘touch’ – and I am glad they exist. I hope you enjoy them, too!


I bought this at a flea-market in Paris and the vendors couldn’t believe their luck – they had a good laugh when I marched off with it. But I was and am happy! It is an amateur attempt (on wood) at recreating a popular Victorian painting by Frank Paton. The original is in a private collection but you can buy prints of it from various places. I like to think my version has more ‘soul’. Frank Paton (1856 -1909) was born near where I currently live so that adds another layer of interest.

portrait of a poodle
Poodle portrait made with ‘Velvon’ . The frame and background are plastic

Sadly, ‘Velvon’ – black velvet – doesn’t seem to have been a success. I can’t find any mentions of it and the Company “Greecol Arts Ltd” from Harold Wood in Essex, England, also no longer exists.

close-up of ‘Velvon’

Next up, a set of needlepoints from 1970: ‘Gingham Dog’ and ‘Calico Cat’

Biscuit and Sweet tins or boxes often feature animals – I am so pleased to own a painting by Michael Victor Johnson (UK-born but now based in Germany) taken from one such box. You can follow Mike on Instagram:

A tin of Sharps Quality Confectionery – 40s or 50s

Sharps was a family business in Maidstone (Kent)
more about its history here

Kitschy images are also often produced on plates and I own 2. One another fleamarket find … the other for truly sentimental reasons – it used to hang in our family’s living-room and I inherited it.

from ‘Purrfect Portraits’ – Danbury Mint
alka kunst, Bavaria – signed Gisele

And finally, a detail of the cover image: the clock (it still works) was our present to ourselves when we went on honey-moon. I am fortunate that my husband is not afraid of Kitsch.

2 white cats agains blue background
marked Impex – I have not been able to trace this particular company