UK Chapter

of the
International Perfume Bottle Association

A group for collectors of perfume bottles and perfume ephemera

Convention 2012 - November 10th and 11th, Leicester

After a successful convention year we returned to the Leicestershire Suite of the Holiday Inn in central Leicester. There were no more registrations than last year and a couple of our regular dealers decided not to come but we nonetheless had a good programme and I was hopeful of another enjoyable weekend.

pochet montageMany members arrived on Friday and after a couple of hours sorting out the goody bags and display cases we congregated in the hotel restaurant at an ever lengthening table.

On Saturday morning it was all hands to the pump to decorate the room and set up the reception desk and then Angie opened the convention. Angie welcomed delegates from overseas: our most regular and valued member, Phyllis Dohanian from the USA , Gerda and Gilbert Marshall from Germany, Maureen and Ton Langelaar from Holland, dealers Stefaan and Tom from Belgium and Monica Magnani from Italy.

Our first speaker was Mark Loveday, Sales Director of Pochet UK, part of the Pochet du Courval company. In a fascinating talk Mark described the development of Pochet and the work that the UK company does. Mark brought many examples of Pochet bottles and had generously produced some bottles labelled as mementoes of the convention, indeed enough for all of the goody bags.

After a delicious lunch IPBA UK member Yvonne Redgrove gave a captivating talk about favourite bottles from her collection. Yvonne related many memories of the bottles and her affection for her collection was obvious.

This was followed with a slide presentation prepared by Marsha Crafts, who leads the Czech glass speciality group for the IPBA. The slides gave a comprehensive introduction to the world of Czech glass and while these bottles aren’t collected by many in the UK everyone had a much better understanding of the subject. A couple of members thought they would look out for Czech bottles in the future.

After the tea break we had the first innovation in the programme — a Collectors’ Market. Members were given a small space to display and sell or swap items from their collections. Several members took part and it provided an opportunity to see bottles and ephemera not normally on show anywhere. I think the session was enjoyed by people on both sides of the table and will definitely be repeated.

The afternoon ended with an Open Forum on various matters of interest including:
- an effort to attract more young people to the IPBA Young Collectors group
- a decision to advertise the UK Chapter in the book that is being produced to celebrate the IPBA silver jubilee
- a reminder that the Perfume Intelligence website is a free resource for members, whose contributions are welcomed see www.perfumeintelligence.co.uk

After a shaky technical start, we managed to both hear and see via Skype the IPBA President Susan Arthur from her home in New Jersey. Chris Hipkiss chatted to her about a wide variety of topics including the next IPBA Board nominations (Jeffrey Sanfilippo is to be the next President), the Las Vegas convention and Hurricane Sandy. Susan coped well with Chris’s unique style of interviewing and the chat was appreciated by all present.

In the evening, after a buffet, Chris ran the usual Mini Auction which included items donated by our speakers, Mark Loveday and Shelagh Foyle, and as usual some sought-after items from Phyllis. The most surprising item was a Pochet bottle that was produced for the Abba group but never released commercially. One of only six in existence, it went for over £100, much to Mark’s surprise and amazement.

The Sunday programme was changed quite a bit this year to make it a worthwhile and interesting day for those members who could only make it for that day. The sale room was opened earlier than normal and at 10 o’clock we had a talk from Shelagh Foyle, Head Perfumer and Perfumer Laureate from Floris, London. Shelagh successfully covered both perfume and perfume bottles in her talk with exactly the right balance between the juice (with plenty to sample) and the bottles within the development of the Floris brand from the middle of the eighteenth century.

After silence for Remembrance Sunday at 11 am the public were admitted to the room and for once the extensive advertising seemed to produce a result, with around thirty people coming in.

We relished another lunch and then the ever popular Raffle Draw. Many, many items had been generously donated by members and most people won something — even the Welsh contingent this year! One of the star prizes, registration for the Las Vegas convention donated by Susan Arthur and Deborah Washington, was won by Ollie Hitchen.

The planned second collectors’ market and the phial exchange table were squeezed out through lack of time but we will probably try again next year.

Another enjoyable and in many ways successful convention was over. The success is in no small part down to the efforts and generosity of members who donate items for the goody bags (the best ones ever?), the raffle and the auction. These are popular parts of the weekend that also keep the costs down considerably.

Our speakers gave up their weekend for little reward to come and entertain us and we are very grateful to them. We are fortunate to have many regular attendees and, as I said during the event, the weekend is more of a reunion than a convention. These regulars will be watching with interest the forthcoming debate about when and where the 2013 convention will be!

Photo Album»

UK Chapter of the IPBA       Convention Organiser: Terry 0116 2478776 or 07714 671234, email terry@ipba-uk.co.uk