So, for us, the two highlights of Frieze were only slightly connected with art. Firstly, the food at this fancy fair is a cut above normal exhibitions, we stopped for a cake at Gail's artisan bakery and were overwhelmed with choice, apparently she does wonderful bread at her stores in Clapham, Notting Hill, St John's Wood and Battersea. Lovely, interesting and terribly fattening cakes revived our flagging interest in the canvasses half way through our art trawl..
Our second highlight was something we could actually afford to buy. In a collaboration with Bill Amberg, the Royal Parks charity has made shopping bags out of its old deck chairs, not any old deck chair fabric either, these are the designer deck chair slings (the technical name for the fabric seat) that were produced over the last three years as part of the Deck Chair Dreams initiative.
Artists such as Tracey Emin, Rachel Howard, Marc Quinn and a lovely one by Catherine Yass, designed chair fabric that has been in use throughout the parks for the last few summers. Now they've done their time, they've been replaced by new works and the old designs have been cleaned up and turned into jolly bags, with nice strong leather handles (courtesy of Mr Amberg and his skilled Somerset craftsmen).
The bags are limited editions, each chair sling only makes one bag and can be bought from the Deck Chair Dreams website. At £55 these would make rather lovely London-flavoured presents for Christmas, particularly for home sick Londoners currently abroad or anyone who's a fan of the eight Royal Parks, which the proceeds help to support,
Deckchair bags made from fabric recycled from the Royal Park deckchairs