Thursday, August 14, 2014

A Few "New" Old Things

Yes, I know it's been a while, but it is summer after all and I'm trying to pack as much as possible into every single day. Here in New England, the summer season is blissful but insanely short and already I find myself teetering on the brink of an anxiety attack just thinking about the winter ahead. It truly feels like we just put away our parkas.

And I've been busy with a few big things. Mainly trying to set up an Etsy shop to share some of the many lovely treasures I dig up but probably don't need to continue hoarding. Let me confess right off the bat that I had no idea how involved such an undertaking would be! At least to do it legally, that is. So, while I am definitely a lot closer to fulfilling that goal, I am not quite there yet. And truthfully, it may not happen until the kids get settled into the new school year. And that is OKAY.

Anyway, I've thrifted a few times but not with any regularity and I've been lazy about writing full blown blog posts about what I've uncovered. If you are interested in seeing some of my finds from this summer, you can follow me on Facebook--Anne's Pocket Finds. I do try to post pictures there more regularly, so definitely take a peek, but here is just a taste of what I've found in the last couple of months:

A vintage drafting table, in excellent structural condition. I spotted this table after picking my daughter up at camp, it was sitting out on the curb nearby. Unfortunately, I had parked far away due to a road repaving project and was not able to carry the table to my car, although I certainly considered trying for a few minutes (much to my daughter and her friend's utter embarrassment!). Lucky for me, it was still sitting there the next morning, and a nice gentleman helped me load it up. I was so happy, and even happier when I got home and researched my find. These tables go for a lot of money! However, like most of my favorite finds, this is not for sale. I already know just where it will go once I'm finished sprucing it up.

Of course, I'm still collecting vintage cookie cutters whenever I see them!

This Oxford stoneware water pitcher is a nice addition to my small but growing collection of this pattern. I love the lid!

And here is another of my very favorite finds from this summer. A group of Russel Wright American Modern dish ware, in chartreuse. My mother owned a set of Russel Wright Iroquois china in blue, and also the American Modern pitcher in chartreuse. I remember hating it so much when I was a child, I thought it was soooo ugly. But, of course now I love it. My sister has the pitcher now and I am lucky enough to have been given the Iroquois dishes. I use them just as my mother did, on Christmas Eve, Easter, and Thanksgiving.

So there is a small sampling of some of the highlights from my summer hauls. But one of my most favorite acquisitions is not a "find" but rather a lovely and generous gift.

Just the other day, a friend sent me a box full of the most beautiful vintage sewing trims and threads! And not only that, she enclosed a letter with the stories behind the trimmings. In the 1920s and '30s, her great-grandmother ran a little store out of her parlor selling fine linen, fabric, lace, trims, buttons and more. The vintage notions that she shared with me were left from that time.

She also sent along pictures of some of the quilts her great-grandmother had sewn and the stories behind them. And best of all, she sent them to me to actually use with my children! Normally, I hoard treasures this beautiful and pristine, so getting encouragement to use these in projects and not just tuck them away for that mythical rainy day is so wonderful. The only problem will be getting up the courage to make the first cut--even my daughter said, "Mom, it is going to be hard to use these up. They are so pretty!"

But use them up, we will. In fact, we have a couple of projects in mind already. And while snipping and stitching, we will think of "Baba" and her wonderful sewing shop. I think she'd like knowing that a new generation of young girls will enjoy sewing with her beautiful trimmings.