Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Does this look like a "Treasure Chest??"

Don't be fooled by the back-alley placement of this little gem....

Time and time again this "magic box" has produced vintage treasures that would have gone unnoticed by the common man...

This dumpster sits right next to the parking lot at our local post office. I can see it as soon as I pull up. And if I get there on a lucky day, it will be waiting with "who-knows-what" inside. I can recall half a dozen times when, all I did was pull into the PO parking space, look up, and there it was...beckoning me with some useful item waiting to be remade! Once I even found a lovely wicker sofa and side table precariously shoved into it! (They now reside on my front porch.)

Last week someone thoughtfully laid these treasures there for me:

A perfect vintage George Washington bedspread...perfect fringe and all! 100% cotton, NOT polyester. Look at the size of this thing! (click on it for a better view) It's shown on my King sized bed. Perfect condition! I found it gingerly draped and spilling out over the edge of the dumpster as if the previous owner knew I'd be coming to the PO that day. It lured me over to peek inside...

And amid a box of old throw pillows...

This BEAUTIFUL vintage chenille number! It had a couple of stains on the edge but they came out with oxy treatment and it is gorgeous!

I have made no secret of my "diving" and finds like these make me down-right proud! I...AM...the ULTIMATE RECYCLER!


POST SCRIPT: Ahem...could I just clerify? "Diving" is just an expression. It usually entails retrieving something already revealed...not actually climbing in and scraping the bottom. It is serendipitous.

I know Christmas is over but...

Did you know that the 12 Days of Christmas actually STARTS on Christmas day??? So really, I can keep celebrating until January 5th!

I just wanted to share some pics of my favorite ornaments from this season.

My sweet angel and blown glass tree topper.

I love these old angels with the china heads, netting, and paper accesories.
This one was a 50-cent'r after Christmas sale item.
This sweetheart is a little german bell covered with a wooden headed felt angel. She was donated to my thrift shop and, because she has all the perfect colors of pink and blue, I snatched her right up and took her home.

I also collect these old '70's items with red and white flocking over a plastic base. This Snoopy is missing one ear but I just turned him the other way. He is so cute. In the upper left corner you can see a bit of a red flocked house that Santa is peeking out of. (Click any photo to enlarge.)

This basket of ornaments is another 1/2 price find. Most are marked West Germany. They are a little older than the style I usually collect but for $3.50, was I just supposed to leave the basket at the store???

This is a wreath I made out of all my extra vintage ornaments. (Sometimes you have to buy a whole bagful to get the ONE indent at the bottom of the bag~!) I strung them all on a wire coat hanger, leaving the hooked end to hang it. It's a bit delicate. I strung about 65 ornaments but about 4-5 popped off (plink...CRASH). I think it was too packed. I learned how to do it from Rhoda at Southern Hospitality.

Here is a peek at my attempted village display. It didn't quite turn out how I'd hoped but it's ok.

Here is a close-up of my treasured pink santa that a dear friend gave to me years ago after I admired it. Isn't it nice to have generous friends!

This is my NEW Nicole Sayre nativity that I got at Mega-Marshalls! I Love it! The colors are beautiful! On the day I bought it, I set it right in the center of my dining table. Later that day, I lifted it to clean the table and Joseph dropped to the floor and I totally broke HIS FOOT OFF! AARRGH! It's made of plaster so his foot really just shattered off, so it wasn't like I could just glue it back on! BLaaah!! I'm gonna have to make a new foot with sculpey. My son has it in EVERY COLOR and I use it to fix EVERYTHING I breaK!

This is what I did with my Santa collection this year. I did have it on the buffet but it was so overwhelming I relegated them all to this old bassinette.
I hope you all had a blessed Christmas! God bless you in the New Year!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Vintage jewelry Christmas trees framed on Black Velvet! Just like grandma used to make!

Merry Christmas! The elves have been busy around here! "They've" been decorating, creating, wrapping etc, just as I'm sure YOU have been doing! The little wreath above was made from an old garland that my friend was throwing out. I wound it into a circle, added a couple ornaments (birdie lost his tail so I stuck a pink feather in the end!), and pinned-on some of my favorite vintage brooches.

It hangs in my bedroom where I can see it, first thing in the morning when I wake up. It's very cheery!

Our next project asks the question "What do I do with all these bags of broken vintage jewelry?"
Well, you turn it into Christmas Trees!

My daughter, Eva, made the one above and gave it to an elderly lady at church. She was delighted with it. Most of the jewelry came from her so she recognized alot of the pieces.
Eva helped me make these MINI trees. They are about 6" whereas the larger one is about 12". Do you see the girl riding her bike??
I like how they turned out. Check out he Jesus and Mary at the base of this one. I must get back to my baking. It's not REAL baking. I'm making those easy Thin-Mint cookie clones. I'll have a recipe and pics for you tomorrow.
Have a BLESSED day!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

New door and chandelier at the Cottage!

I know it's silly to get excited about such small things but if your front door was 100 years old, you'd understand. Our old door was so out of plumb that you could hardly lock it anymore! And the window that had been broken out of it before we bought the cottage had been replaced with a bit of ill-fitting plywood. There was a 1inch gap at the bottom and everytime I left the place, I had to pray that I could slam the door just right in order for it to lock. One time I slammed my finger in it and stood there crying as my son prepared to catch me as I fainted from PAIN! So NOW maybe you can understand my JOY! Just look how perfectlly square it is! Aaaaaah.....

Here is the old door. I painted the little plywood piece blue just to make it tolerable. In the 2nd pic you can see light coming through the crack where it was screwed to the door! Ugh.
Look at this photo from the inside. At the top of the jamb you can see that it was practically 3" off square! No wonder I could never get it shut! The workers had to remove the original trim but were able to get it back up. You can see they had a little trouble with the plaster/lathe coming off on the left but they patched it pretty well.

Inside view. The new locks work like a dream. I'm very happy. ('Scuse the unpainted section of the floor.)

Check out my chandelier! I bought it at a garage sale for $2. It had no crystals and it was all brass so I took it apart, rewired it and painted it white. I bought an old table lamp for $10 that had aurora borealis crystals and used them for the chandelier. They are awesome!

Look how they sparkle like tiny rainbows!
I bought 2 ceiling medallions at the Escondido AMVETS for about $5. (Try to fit THAT in your carry-on luggage!) You can see I used the smaller one here. The center hole was a bit small for the electrical box so I just jig-sawed it bigger and then glued the thing up there with that super-caulking-industrial-glue-stuff. It ain't goin' nowhere!
My daughter and I have been working of Christmas crafts and I hope to have a few pictures of them for you next time!
Merry Christmas

Friday, December 4, 2009

NOT SO "Fast Times at Ridgemont High"

Well, I can't believe it but it's true. I've returned from my 30th High School Reunion! Who were all those "old folks?" Oh, ya. They were ME & MY FRIENDS!!!

This photo shows only a smattering of our class of over 900! I guess if you can get 1oo or so of them together, it's a pretty good turnout.
Few people know this, but my 1979 graduating class was the inspiration behind Cameron Crowe's novel & subsequent film, "Fast Times at Ridgemont High." I did not know him, but some of my good friends knew him as he infiltrated their Journalism class.

Every ten years we get together and have a blast! And every ten years the local media writes a little piece or films a little news clip about the "Ridgemont High" class. It's kinda fun to have our "15 minutes of fame". But it's even more fun to reminisce with the girlfriends!
Well, I guess I got 15 and a half minutes of fame this time. After the Saturday night reunion, I got a few early AM wake-up calls on Sunday. "Have you seen this morning's paper?" I got my picture in the paper but they didn't use anything I had to say in the interview...I guess they didn't like the idea that it was because of my own high school experience that I HOMESCHOOL! LOL!

That's me on the left, sorting name tags....
You can read the entire article here if you are interested in more info...
Anyways, while I was in San Diego, I got to visit The Best Thrift Store in the Universe!

Amvets Thrift Store is a GIGANTIC store in Escondido and if you EVER get a chance, you MUST go! Yes, this is a command. If you DO have the chance and DO NOT go, you will regret it the rest of your live-long days! It's THAT GOOD! I visit San Diego 3-4 times a year and hit Amvets every time! (Plus, there is ANOTHER one right by the airport! Double-duty!)
Here is the outside of the building. See...I told you it was BIG!

Rows of shoes.
Miles of aisles of clothing.

This is the checkout where, on a Saturday morning there will be up to 10 checkers taking your money!
Every day the board announces which colored tags are 50%-75% off. If you go on a crazy Saturday, everything but ______ colored tags are 50% off, but you will be hard pressed to find anything but ______ colored tags! It's a trick they do that I have not been able to figure out. I've been there on a Friday and returned on Saturday only to find that all the tags have magically changed color!!! The tagging elves have swept through the place during the night and changed everything! It's incomprehensible due to the sheer volumn of stuff in there!
I didn't take a picture of all the knick-knacks lining every wall but they have loads of modern, vintage and antique JUNQUE. I didn't even take a pic of the items I bought. But I got 2 American Girl Bitty baby twins for 6$ plus some other items that will be resold on Ebay. I also bought some silver tea pots that will be turned into night lights. I will be sure to take
before/after pics of that.
Bye for now!