You will have met Ade in 2017. His Guest Tea Towel was a Calendar Tea Towel for 1965, very popular tea towel, especially in America. Ade is a ‘serious’ collector of tea towels; his are either vintage or brand new, unused, pristine. Ade’s Twitter Profile says that he takes his shoes ‘seriously’, that he is an author by day and an Inheritance Planner by night with cycling, baking and collecting tea towels as additional interests. His book “Maximum Inheritance: The easy way to write the will that is perfect for you” is well-recommended.
On 2 January 2018, Ade contacted me “Are you up for a brief article on my latest tea towels?”. I couldn’t turn down an offer like that! Ade said:
”I had a whale of a time at Christmas. It was so long ago. I hear you say “What was that?”. I had several additions to my tea towel collection. I bought one when I went to see ‘The Mousetrap’ (having seen ‘The Mousetrap’ three times, the first time when I was 8, more recently three years ago and there wasn’t a tea towel to be seen. So I think Ade was very lucky). The others I got as gifts. They were all in display of good grace and sparkling wit. Christmas was a down time for me – I didn’t do a lick of work for two weeks – it’s part of living my life like it’s golden. But I performed three administrative tasks: first, I made entries to my Christmas Card and Gift Book – more about this another day; secondly, I marked important dates in the calendar – things like tax disc renewal etc. Finally, and importantly, I altered the provisions of my will. It’s my day job, but that’s for another day. There were two changes. I have a new niece since I wrote the document, so I have made provision for her. And I’ve followed my own advice of leaving gifts to those who’d get most out of them”
“Cost and Worth: In my book, ‘Maximum Inheritance’, we discussed how my friend, and client, has a super-dooper spinning wheel – leaving instructions of how it was to be disposed of. Tea towels aren’t in the same league as coins, stamps or wines as collectible items but if one knows where to look….. These items aren’t meant to remove water from dishes or dry hands. They are collectibles – their worth exceeds their cost. With the right person, the pleasure is boundless, such that to take measure is cruelty.”
“Previously my tea towel collection would have got lost in the residue of my estate. The collection would have been wasted. It would have been bits of cloth of little intrinsic value and would have ended up in a Charity Shop. What a waste that would have been!”
”The solution: Bequeath (free of all taxes and other costs) my Tea Towel Collection to the Virtual Tea Towel Museum. Barbara would know what to do with it. She’d make sure the lot went to a good home. I wouldn’t want the set to merely be drying hands or cleaning dishes”
What can I say? That is a very generous bequest and should I no longer be around I have already bequeathed my whole Tea Towel Collection (together with the Virtual Tea Towel Museum) as a gift to Jai, with clear instructions as to what she needs to do, so long term provisions would be made for Ade’s Collection.
Thank you Ade for that great contribution to the 2018 Guest Tea Towels!