Score of the Week! (#12)

Have ya’ll noticed a theme with these score of the week posts up ’til now?  Like maybe I have a special affinity for vintage pottery, children’s books, and old printed glassware?  Well, brace yo-self, this week I will be flashing more of this exact goodness!  So much so in fact, that I will be splitting these goods into two lots; but to make it interesting, I will accompany them both with a thrifty lesson.  A little thrifty tippage for you.

GOOD STUFF!  Gimme somma that good stuff!

GOOD STUFF! Gimme Somma That Good Stuff!

I think a lot of my finding the same types of things has to do that I am always on the lookout for these things.  That’s the essence of a collector, right?  Every time I hit a thrift store, estate sale, or flea market, I have a little list in my head that I always check for…  this is my Mom’s training.  I have been thrift shopping since the womb (no exaggeration), so over the years, if you apprentice with a master, you are bound to learn a few things here and there.  I think the two general rules of thrift shopping would be– having a general idea of what you’re looking for, and keeping an open mind while you look.  Remember that some things can be altered and fitted to your wants.  So today, we’re going to tackle the first part.

***Have a general idea of what you are looking for.***

This sounds easy, doesn’t it?  That’s because it is.  As you are going about your life– brushing your hair in the morning, washing your hands at dinnertime, flossing at night– all the while staring at a mirror you don’t like, think about what you *would* like hanging right there.  What kind of frame would this replacement have?  Is it a different size?  Is the material important?  How much would you want to spend on it?  Develop some loose parameters about this replacement item.  Its really as simple as that.  (For a real-life version of the example I just gave, read up–  Having an idea of what you’re wanting helps you to have a purpose when you hit the shops, rather than feeling like you have to look at everything to find a good deal.

One thing that I actively do to improve my thrifting that I know my mother does not, is that I keep a thrift journal.  Its just a smallish spiral-bound notebook, and in it I write lists and make sketches.  For example, in my thrift journal right now, I have a page for each room of the house, and what general items I’m watching for in those spaces.

My Thrift Book W/ Sketch

My Thrift Book W/ Sketch

Dining room–

  • yardage of (preferably) large-scale black gingham
  • funky silverware
  • ribbed, pressed-glass serving pieces such as pitchers, butter dishes, s&p shakers, cake plates
  • 1950s-ish silhouettes
  • vintage yellow and chartreuse pottery
  • two matching chairs for ends of the table
  • large drum shade

I also have a page for my son (including– books for bedtime,  size six pants, anything LEGO); his upcoming birthday party needs (men’s colored XL tees to make into capes for the kids), collections (vintage printed glassware, kitchen cupcake/ice cream items, mccoy pottery), gifts for other people (like jadeite for my sister, delft for my Mother-in-law, etc.) personal style/wardrobe (jeans, short-sleeved tops, liquid eyeliner), and the list goes on.  Whenever I’ve marked an overwhelming number of things off a page, I tear it out and recycle it, and either retire the category– “Dining room done no need for this!”– or start a fresh page with the few remaining items.  Believe it or not, I don’t need to take the list with me, once I’ve written it all down, I’ve pretty much got a good idea of what I’m watching for.  (Keep in mind that not everything on these lists will be purchased second-hand, in my mind the goal of writing it down in the book is for me to merely find a good deal on that item, new or used.  No thrifted eyeliner for me, blech!)

If I feel the need for something to be fairly specific, I will sometimes sketch out my version.  I am currently on the watch for some sort of super-narrow desk or maybe sofa table, something shallow that I can still pull a chair under.  I don’t want it to be very curvy or ornate, instead I really want something that is very squared-off and angular.  White or aqua would be preferable, if I could choose, but I’ll paint if I find the right thing in the wrong color.  I’m thinking the twenty to thirty dollar range would be preferable.  I intend to use it as a vanity for myself in the master bedroom.  Because this is an element I don’t really want to settle on (I already have a headboard and chest of drawers that I love love love, and I want this to all ‘fit’), I quickly drew out the type of thing I had in mind in my book.  This sort of cements it for me and establishes those parameters.  If you feel that your drawing skills aren’t adequate, I’m sure that snapping cell phone pics or pinning ‘the right stuff’ on pinterest is all equivalent.  Whatever works for you, really, just visualize, visualize, visualize.  I swear it cannot hurt to be daydreaming about pretty, cheap, things you hope to find, it just can’t.

Chartreuse Lefton Pottery

Chartreuse Lefton Pottery

So, case in point– at the KARM with my mother-in-law this week I scored this gorgeous basketweave Lefton chartreuse pot in *perfect*condition!  I had to keep myself from squealing when I saw it….  And only three dollars!  It doesn’t get much better than that.  The color is perfect and I really like the faux texture.  I had to take a soft-bristle toothbrush to it in order to clean out all those grooves, but when I did it revealed that the glaze and condition were even nicer than I had originally thought.  AND it still has its wee red and gold Lefton sticker on the bottom!  Yay!

Geese Glass

Geese Glass

I’m sure if you’ve already spent any time with me anywhere, blog or real life, you’ll know that I avidly collect mid-century printed glassware.  Like, obsessively.  It’s something like a 17 year collection for me at this point, and I literally have hundreds of pieces.  Never enough.  The geese is not a new theme to myself or my collection, but I do think this is the first gold and teal pieces I have, what an unusual combo.  And the condition on this one is fantastic– no internal frosting, paint still bright and glossy.  Two bucks!

A Couple More Pottery Pieces

A Couple More Pottery Pieces

I picked up a couple more pottery pieces, even though both are sort of oddball.  The mousie on the chunk o’ cheddar is a rooter, I guess?  It is tee-niny, and has that opening on his head.  No holes on the bottom, so that’s what I’m going with…. anyway, he looks handpainted, but he’s also brightly glazed, he’s a little mystery… he reminds me of my friend Eartha Mae Kitsch, for some reason.  I think it’s the entranced gaze.

The blue thing he’s sitting on is a candle pillar stand, and it also has a vintage sticker, one that simply says “Japan.”  I remember doing research on that once, I should be able to get an idea of how old it is by the sticker, I should try and figure it out.  I got because it looks flexible, like maybe I could put plates on it for serving at parties, or displaying sugar eggs in the spring– and blue is used a lot around here.  It’s cleaned up really well!

Anyway, many more scores in with this one, and next time I will talk a little bit about the ‘other’ rule of thrift shopping, while I show you the REST of this stuff!


Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.