..........a blog about food, travel, gardening, and living the good life in Arizona.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Recent thrifting acquisitions

A most amazing auction with oodles of stuff from a tiny house that must have been packed to the rafters. And even though the Cinderella bowls were buried in a box along with other kitchen stuff, the saavy auctioneers knew what they had, so offered them separately. No matter, they had my name all over them; coming home with me was a foregone conclusion. They are in fabulous condition and seriously, who doesn't love a pyrex bowl?

The green depression glass sherberts were another find at the same auction and since they go perfectly with my china pattern (Mikasa Hampshire), they had to come home with me as well. Now, what to fill them with?

Lately, I've been obsessed with vintage patterns and search them out wherever I go. Here are a few of my recent finds... This little number, a dress I actually made in the early 70s, was known as a culotte dress for its pants bottom and dress top. These were very popular in the late 60s, early 70s but now I'm thinking, what a pain when you have to go to the bathroom! I guess that didn't bother me back then because I remember making several of these dresses and culotte skirts too.

This apron pattern is not very old (1979) compared to others in my collection, but I love, love, love view 2. It has an "H"-back with back loops that the ties slip through. It will be amazingly comfortable and won't hang around the neck like many of the less well-designed, modern aprons do. It's a keeper.

Then there is this glamorous 1960s fishtail cocktail/evening dress designed by Pauline Trigere that I found at a thrift store. To die for... a dress that dreams are made of. And though I haven't stopped dreaming, this one is better left to Etsy shoppers; it's now for sale in my shop there.

Thanks for stopping by! Happy thrifting!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Remember gym suits?

Our's were white, one piece, with short sleeves, a collar, button front, a fixed belt with a metal loop-type buckle and bloomer bottoms. Just hideous. No wonder half the girls hated gym and pleaded to get out of it. We had to take our gym suits home every week for laundering too and then on Monday, coach would check to make sure our suits were clean including our sneakers! When I came across this pattern in my stash, it reminded me of those gym class days and the associated anxiety of wearing such an awful outfit. Who the heck designed those things anyway?

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Aprons of the 20th Century

Earlier this week I was invited to give my vintage apron presentation to a fun group of local women celebrating their annual “Ladies’ Night Out” event. It was a great time with a wonderful turnout. After my talk, we have a little “show and tell” so attendees who brought aprons can share their stories and memories of their treasured piece of history. It’s the best part of the evening for me and so gratifying to meet others who value vintage aprons too. Here are some photos during my presentation.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Catching up...

Hmmm… has it really been over a year since I wrote in my blog? Guess so. It’s not because I’ve nothing to say, truly… friends can vouch for this, but simply because I’ve been really busy this past year, often with projects that would likely bore quite a few gentle readers… so no need to inflict those posts on anyone.
During this not-blogging time, I’ve found out a few things about myself, about writing and about my vintage obsessions. Fact is, I really like to hunt down the treasure, but I’m not so keen on actually parting with it, even if I bought it with the intention of selling it. Sound familiar to anyone? I do like to write about stuff though; that’s how I blog roll, it seems. Over the winter as this realization began to sink in, I stopped going to auctions and stopped buying whatever looked interesting or had possible sales value. Still my house is filled with the things I collect… books, vintage linens including aprons, table cloths, fancy work (pillowcases, dresser scarves, countless tea cloths with matching napkins), books, framed prints, vintage sewing notions and of course, vintage sewing patterns (my current love), and books, did I mention books? I’ve watched that show about hoarders (for about 45 seconds) and I don’t think I’m there yet.
No auctions, estate sales, or garage saling for many, many months, until yesterday when I took myself on an artist’s date (a creative practice from Julia Cameron’s book, The Artist’s Way) and went to an estate sale on a farm. It started at 7:00 a.m. and I got there a few minutes before. Loads of really great looking vintage items, all of which I managed to resist. Not because I didn’t want them, but because the woman running the sale was from Texas (I’m guessing here… the daughter of the homeowners) and had her own ideas concerning market value of vintage items. She priced everything by Texas standards which don’t actually translate very well here in SW Nebraska, if you get my drift. You don’t find B&B’s around every curve in a country road in these parts, nor any Texas hill-country style mansions whose owners decorate in vintage style. Case in point, the box of fancy work I considered buying (a small box, really) that she was convinced was worth $40.00. Well, maybe in Texas, but not around here. At a local auction that small box would go for around $3.00… and well, I felt compelled to tell her so. Leaving empty-handed, quite self-satisfied… and okay, a bit superior, I soon arrived at the next stop on my list. It was a lovely little home in SW Lincoln where the dear friends of an octogenarian were holding an estate sale for their friend. Now these ladies knew how to price things!! I walked away from this one with a smile on my face. My finds: 2 sewing boxes filled with vintage rick rack, lace, buttons still on the cards, a buttoneer (never used, still in the box), a couple of vintage patterns, some really old handmade braid from Germany still on the card, the big yellow Pyrex bowl (50 cents) and a two pristine, block-printed mid century tablecloths (50 cents each -- just the sort of thing I hoard). Ahhhhh, I’ve got my game back I think; a happy thrifter indeed. Here’s a photo: